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I was looking for a small flash memory based MP3 player for podcasts and a few tunes I wanted to have portable.  I never owned a small MP3 player before now.  I started with a 20GB Archos, and when that died, I moved to a Creative Zen 40GB, which I am still very happy with, but when you want a few hours worth of podcasts or tunes, the Zen can be a bit big and heavy.  I also recently started biking again and the thought of my 40GB Zen somehow falling, crashing to the ground and self destructing was enough for me to start shopping for a flash player.  All I knew was I wanted as much storage space without an actual hard drive (no moving parts actually) and I wanted it light and fairly usable.  I looked at the Mobi Blu and thought I found a winner. 

Alas when I shopped around (Wal-Mart was the only store that claimed to have these little hotties at the time) a few stores and came up empty handed, I had to make a choice.  All I had for time to make up my mind was the 15 minutes it took the elderly (not old, *elderly*) man to open the MP3 player case at my friendly neighborhood Wal-Mart.  In the end I went with the 1GB Sony Network Walkman. 


I like Sony, I like my PSP, I like my Cybershot camera, so I went with the Sony. 

All in all I have to say the user experience is very satisfying so far.  I like the AAA battery, no fancy schmancy battery to replace when the built in one stops charging, and if the battery needs to be charged and I am out somewhere, there are a million places I can go to get a batt, no waiting till I am near an AC outlet to recharge.  That was an added bonus I didn’t think of.  The only thing I miss is the drag and drop convenience of my old Archos.  When I wanted to add music to my Archos, I took out my USB cable, let Windows find it as a removable drive, copy my audio over to it and away I went.  Now with the Creative Zen, and the Sony, I can plug my USB cable in and move audio to my removable drive, but the built in MP3 player does not see the music.  It kinda gets treated as a great big memory stick.  If you want the music to show up and be playable as music on the MP3 player, you have to use the manufacturer supplied software to move the music to the device.  Not a deal breaker, and I think most MP3 players work this way now anyways, but I miss that drag and drop audio convenience.  If I am away from home and there is a podcast someone wants to share with me, I can copy the audio to the device, and then when I get home, copy the audio off the drive to my PC, and then back in thru the software.  That’s my only complaint with the Sony Network Walkman so far.  All in all, I am very happy with the device and can recommend it to anyone looking for a reliable, bigger flash based MP3 player.      

Posted on Sunday, August 28, 2005 7:04 PM | Back to top

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