Monday, February 13, 2006
In general I've been very pleased with the device.
- It works well with Linux. It mounts nicely as a mass storage usb device without incident.
- The UI really isn't too goofy. The hardest aspect for me was figuring out how to turn it on.
- A standard AA battery powers the device, an enormous advantage over players, such as iPods, which have integrated rechargeable batteries because when my Yepp's $10 worth of 4 rechargeable batteries eventually give out, it'll cost me just another $10. When my friend's fancy iPods' batteries give out, it'll cost them much more to replace. Moreover, if I ever forgot to recharge my player's battery, grabbing a fresh one is simple; try that with a pretty iPod.
- FM reception is reasonable. It's certainly not as good my alarm clock radio and is roughly equivalent to a $20 walkman style radio from Wal-Mart.
- The ogg audio file format is well supported. I've not found a quality setting or sampling rate in my casual examination that couldn't be played.
- Output levels can be cranked. 20 mW of output seem to be enough to drown out my lawn mower, which is impressive.
- It seems to be a hardy little device having suffered the dampness of being sweated on and soaked in melting snow and the impacts of drops and my general clumsiness.
- It really is a small device with a readable screen. I think it's a more portable size than an iPod Nano and more practical than an iPod Shuffle.
I am displeased with the device in a few ways.
- Long start up times are annoying.
- If my hand hits the device stowed in my pocket while I run, the shock seems large enough to cause the device to reset. Given the preceeding point, this is rather annoying. Given that the device doesn't pick up at the point at which it left off, this flaw is really annoying.
- Occasionally, my YP-MT6Z will skip to the next track partway through a file. I've updated firmware and such, but the problem persists. The issue does seem to be software related because the skipping is deterministic.
- Fast forward isn't fast enough for skipping to the last 10 minutes of an hour long podcast.
- The name. So nerdy, it's even painful for me.
I can't comment on the quality of the earbuds that come with the device as they fell victim to my bike's spokes early. Neither can I comment on the player's ability to play Windows Media files or to interoperate with any form of music service; I indemnify my bike for my ignorance in the latter, however.
All the same, I recommend the device if you're in the market for flashed based MP3/Ogg player and aren't addicted to iTunes.
I'm glad to hear you like your digital audio player. I however went out and got a "pretty iPod" a few months back. It's a 512 MB Shuffle, and I think it cost exactly $99.
The largest benefit I've received from it is its portability. I can run with it in my pocket and not even notice that it's there. Of course I also use it heavily for data transfers, and it works quite well as a USB mass storage device.
It's also incredibly durable. I've never had it skip or reset.
I also appreciate the convenience of the fancy, built-in rechargeable battery that receives power from the USB port on the PC.
In the end, the only two things I don't really like about the player are the lack of a display screen (but there's really no good way to have that included with this device) and the fact that I'm tied to iTunes...sort of. I'd buy it again, though I might go for the 1GB if I had it to do over.