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Author Topic: Sansa Clip Zip: Wow!  (Read 20049 times)
superboyac
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« on: October 12, 2011, 10:07:28 AM »

IN preparation for my next vacation, I purchased the Sansa Clip Zip.  Not because I didn't already have 3 or 4 mp3 players, just because.  It's really quite cool!!  I'm no mp3 player expert, but I have followed it closely over the years simply because I'm all about music.  I'll break down what makes this thing so freaking cool.  If you've ever had a Sansa Clip of any model, I'm probably preaching to the choir:
1) Super cheap.  I got the 8GB model for $70, and the 4 GB model is $50.
2) Well, what if you want more memory?  It has a microSD slot for more memory.  Isn't that amazing?!
3) Not only that, but it's not a pain to use the card slot like other players.  Very simple menu choice.
4) TINY!  It's about the size of that tiny ipod rectangle model.  Obviously the build quality is much cheaper, but who cares at this price.
5) GREAT sound quality.  Even ignoring the price, it has great sound quality.  Easily better than 90% of the players out there, including Apple.
6) No proprietary cables, just regular USB with the tiny microUSB slot on the player.
7) Firmware updates are fast and reliable.
Cool Sansa asks for feature requests...and then implements them in future firmware!  Who else does that?!
9) Don't like the stock interface software?  You can Rockbox it!  Rockbox is a custom firmware for these players.  It's not ready for this latest clip zip model, but the other clips have it and people love it.

There you go.  Very easily the best bang for the buck player out right now.  I would be shocked if there was another even close.
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eleman
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« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2011, 10:14:36 AM »

Steve's body is not cold yet, but you're already talking as if there are mp3 players other than ipod. Shame on you. Shame on you.
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mouser
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« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2011, 10:27:33 AM »

 Grin
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allen
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« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2011, 10:39:42 AM »

You don't perchance own a Zune do you? I'd be curious about sound quality comparison -- that's one thing that's kept me loyal to the now discontinued Zune/Zune HD line. All other devices audio quality pales, so I'm a bit concerned about what comes next. Hopefully my 64gig ZHD holds out for a good long while...
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superboyac
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« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2011, 12:11:15 PM »

You don't perchance own a Zune do you? I'd be curious about sound quality comparison -- that's one thing that's kept me loyal to the now discontinued Zune/Zune HD line. All other devices audio quality pales, so I'm a bit concerned about what comes next. Hopefully my 64gig ZHD holds out for a good long while...
The Zunes are great also.  I don't own one, but I've used them before, and I like them a lot.  I would say the sound quality of this Clip Zip would compare very favorably with the Zune, and I wouldn't be surprised if it was better.  I also have a couple of high end Sony players, and Sony's walkmans are known for their superb sound quality, and I don't notice any difference with the Sansa.  I mean, I haven't A/B'd them or anything, but I haven't noticed much of a difference.  AS a point of reference, when I listen to ipods, I can immediately notice a lack of sound quality vs. what I'm used to.  Flatter sounds, exaggerated things here and there...I don't find them to be very gentle on my ears.

I won't buy a music player if the sound quality isn't great.  That's my starting point.  Once I have filtered them down to the great sounding players, then I start considering other features, prices, etc.  After all, the primary use is listening to music, right?
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allen
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« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2011, 12:26:03 PM »

I absolutely agree, and this is why I prefer a dedicated audio device over just using my smart phone (Superior battery life doesn't hurt, either...). I'll keep the Clip Zip in mind, thanks!
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Edvard
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« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2011, 03:21:31 AM »

I hope I'm not going too off-topic here, but just to report, I have a Sansa Clip v. 1 that I installed Rockbox on, and while there are advantages to both, I'm sold on Rockbox.

The stock Sansa firmware is very basic, but very easy to navigate; only four different menu items and you're on your way, which I find quite nice.
The RockBox firmware has a MUCH more complex menu system with an almost overwhelming array of options that I feel could be done better/simpler, but the reason I keep it installed is for the sound quality.

The stock firmware sounds OK, but tends to be a little on the "flat" side, and I've noticed it can be overdriven fairly easily e.g. when turning up the bass.
Rockbox sounds at least an order of magnitude better right out of the box with a flat EQ, and it has a fairly advanced 5-band shelving EQ with 3 different methods to control it, and you can save your EQ settings.
It also has a 'Balance' control that I've found quite useful on many occasions (damn those cheap earbuds!!), which Sansa does not have.

Overall, I'm happy with  Sansa's products as a whole, and it's good to know that RockBox will soon support the Zip.
http://www.rockbox.org/
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superboyac
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« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2011, 11:16:16 AM »

Thanks Edvard!  I have heard great things about Rockbox, so I'm really looking forward to it coming to the clip zip also.  Maybe I should just get a clip+ in the meantime...
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Deozaan
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« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2011, 11:39:20 AM »

Here's a link to more product info if anybody is interested: http://www.sandisk.com/pr...sansa-clip-zip-mp3-player

I can't find any information about the battery life. About how long can you play music on this thing before needing to recharge it?
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Edvard
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« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2011, 08:42:21 PM »

My Sansa Clip v.1 typically goes almost a whole day's worth (listening on and off for an 8-hour workday) but it's a few years old now, so I assume the battery has lost a bit of life by now, and battery technology has probably gotten better.
What I could find on the net about it suggest it has a continuous-use life of ~15 hours.
http://www.sandisk.com/ab...sansa-clip-zip-mp3-player
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Daleus
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2011, 07:12:57 AM »

I'm along time fan of the Sansa stuff.

I purchased my first Sansa MP3 player about 5-6 years ago.

It's small, has a easily readable lcd screen, needs nothing proprietary and best of all it's powered by a single AAA battery which they estimate gives 19 hours of playtime. That's roughly 3 hours of listening pleasure a day, to get through a week, and that estimate is pretty much dead on!

I'm still working through my first NiMH AAA rechargeable and I use the thing every week.  And it's still working. In fact I've worn out two sets of headphones since I bought this thing.

Oh yeah, the sound quality has always been superb.

What I'd really like to find is some non-earbud style headphones that will last.  My last pair, some Sony wrap around the back of your head jobbies barely lasted three months before a wire stopped working and I lost one half of the 'phones.

I can't wear earbuds due to hearing issues and I generally hate them anyway as they never stay in my ears.

I wouldn't pay hundreds for good headphones but I would go better than 9.95 for something that lasts Wink

All recommends accepted.
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superboyac
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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2011, 01:04:43 PM »

Daleus, headphones that you describe would be difficult to find.  I've also had a hard time finding portable headphones that weren't earbud style, that were also built very well.  I keep going back to the earbuds because you get the best sound quality, and you can store them anywhere without breaking (like a bag or something).  I have Koss PortaPROs which are really awesome, but they are fragile.  Then, of course I have the big boys that go around your head and have soda cans on the ears, which sound the best and are tough as nails, but are definitely not portable (long thick cords, big ass phones, big head supports).

So I just stick to earbuds.  What you want is something like a KOSS portapro that won't break so easily.  if you find one let me know.
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bob99
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« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2011, 01:33:45 PM »

Daleus,

I bought a pair of JVC headphones like these about a year and a half ago and been happy with them.
http://av.jvc.com/product...&page=2&styleId=A
I can't find a number anywhere on mine to make sure they are the same but they look like it and the specs are the same.  Bought mine at a "Wally World."

They aren't the fancy noise cancelling but suit the need.  They sound good and the earpieces can turn so they lay flat.  I've carried them around in my bag, shoved stuff in on top, pulled em out and they still work. Even worn them doing yard work.

Might take a look.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2011, 01:34:36 PM by bob99; Reason: spelling typo » Logged
Edvard
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« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2011, 09:56:22 PM »

Many variations on this theme, and I like the Howard Leight foldables best, but the gist is:

1- Cheap headphones with large drivers like the Koss PortaPro or KSC75's  (I even found some Cobys that sound great... COBYs).
2- Inexpensive/lightweight hearing protector muffs.
3- Decent (rubber-y, not plastic-y) 3.5mm-stereo-to-RCA patch cord that you can cannibalize.

Voila!:
http://www.instructables....undproof-HiFi-Headphones/
http://news.cnet.com/8301...17938_105-20035598-1.html
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EfeWfnFCy-Y
« Last Edit: October 14, 2011, 11:40:10 PM by Edvard » Logged

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superboyac
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« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2011, 11:33:03 PM »

I couldn't wait for Rockbox to be ported to the clip zip, so I purchased the older clip+ model today.  I just installed Rockbox and....
Rockbox is AWESOME!!!

The amount of information it can show is astounding on that little screen.  And if you don't like a cluttered screen, there are plenty of different themes available for minimalists and powerfreaks both.  But lemme tell you, a couple of these themes are artistically brilliant.  This one dude was able to clutter the screen with just about everything, but it works great.  His scrolling speed and placement and size for long titles are perfectly adjusted and balanced.

Guys, this is the way mp3 players should go.  I don't think I'll ever buy something that isn't Rockboxable anymore.  The only thing that could make it more perfect is to have Sony's build quality and hardware in something that you can Rockbox.  But I doubt that will ever happen.  So the question now is, of the Rockbox comaptible players, which is the best sounding and the best built?
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AbteriX
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« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2011, 03:55:42 PM »

Thanks for that review.
I also have the need for an small player, but after two bad buys (cheap ones) i was afraid of buying an another one.

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superboyac
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« Reply #16 on: October 17, 2011, 11:41:28 AM »

Man, it's really crazy how much information some of these rockbox themes are able to cram in on that tiny monochrome (bichrome?) screen.  And all the settings...sheesh.  It has settings to tweak the sound as if it's a mini pro tools mixing station.  My first reaction is "who uses all this stuff??" but it's impressive, nonetheless.
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superboyac
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« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2011, 11:43:54 AM »

Also, if anyone cares, I prefer the Clip+ over the Clip Zip.  Once the Zip gets Rockbox, I may change my tune.  But for now, it's an easy choice.

Which means:
Best mp3 player under $100 = Sansa Clip+
Final answer.
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Edvard
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« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2011, 08:51:53 PM »

Hehe... mission accomplished  Thmbsup

I totally agree about the customizability, it's pretty awesome, but sometimes I yearn for the simpler Sansa menu; Scrolling through all that stuff just to tweak the bass by 2 dB's is a bit much sometimes.
The only thing I would add to the Rockbox if I could would be the capability for a customizable "home screen" with a user-definable menu or table of shortcuts to the most-used functions.
Hmmm... off to the Rockbox forums...
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« Reply #19 on: October 25, 2011, 06:44:05 AM »

Newegg.com's Shell Shocker Deall From 10AM to 12:59PM Pacific Time (3 hours) today (October 25, 2011),  is a "recertified" 4Gb Sansa Clip+ for $22.99.

I have a couple of Clips, a Clip+ and a Zune, all purchased at various times over the past 2 years recertified from Newegg, for less than $30 each.  All have always worked flawlessly, although one arrived DOA (wouldn't hold a charge) and was immediately replaced by Newegg.

YMMV, but at these prices, I consider them nearly disposable and keep several around for different uses.

I should also note that I like the Sansa players better than any others I have used over the years. I particularly like the Clip and Clip+ because they are tiny, have great FM radio receivers, and most important, have a physical volume rocker on the side so I can reach into my pocket and adjust the volume without having to look.  They have excellent sound with good phones and are much easier to manage contents on than devices that rely on music management software.

I have never tried RockBox, but I might just buy another Clip+ to experiment with, based on the glowing notices here.
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bob99
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« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2011, 08:25:58 AM »

xtabber,

Thanks for the heads up.
I bought a Clip+ a while back to replace a slowly ailing Creative model.  It was ok until I updated to Rockbox on Edvard & superboyac's suggestion and comments.  Now I love it.  True, the Rockbox menu is a bit daunting until you get used to it. But once you do I think it's great.  IMO it's now head and shoulders above my old Creative.  Especially since I now have full and easy access to anything I put on the plug-in SD card.  What my Creative lacks.  And from what I read somewhere Rockbox will allow you to access (I believe this is correct) up to a 32 Gig SD while the stock Sansa firmware will only do up to 2 Gig.
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Deozaan
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« Reply #21 on: October 25, 2011, 12:11:18 PM »

Thanks for the heads up! I got one.
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« Reply #22 on: October 26, 2011, 05:18:26 PM »

I own 2 clip+'s and have rockbox installed on both of them.

First one is being used a jukebox in my car (with a usb power adapter). Never leaves my car.

Second one used at work. It's tiny and it fits behind my speakers.  Thmbsup
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Deozaan
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« Reply #23 on: October 26, 2011, 07:11:57 PM »

First one is being used a jukebox in my car (with a usb power adapter). Never leaves my car.

That's what I intend to use mine for. cheesy
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Deozaan
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« Reply #24 on: October 28, 2011, 07:42:00 PM »

Any tips in getting Rockbox installed on the Clip+? Mine just arrived and the Rockbox installer keeps crashing when I do auto-detect. So I selected things manually and now it's telling me to get the Clip+ original firmware, so I went to the forums and got the firmware but Rockbox installer says it doesn't recognize it (mine is v01.02.16 and it says it only recognizes up to v01.02.15)

So far Rockbox has not been a pleasant experience and does not seem stable at all, and I haven't even gotten it on the Clip+ yet!

UPDATE: Well I managed to find a download for the older firmware. Currently installing Rockbox. *fingers crossed*
« Last Edit: October 28, 2011, 08:05:10 PM by Deozaan » Logged

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