Product Type: Creative MP3 players
Newest Review: ... keeps the USB connector concealed when not moving music between it and your computer, though Creative seem to have followed the baffling... more
The featherweight workhorse
Creative Muvo T100 2 GB
Member Name: dannylee
Creative Muvo T100 2 GB
Advantages: Extremely lightweight and small, yet not fragile
Disadvantages: No screen! Though has been introduced as an improvement to newer models
I've had an affection for Creative MP3 players for some time, specifically the bulkier previous generation MuVo which came in two halves and had a screen. Creative are a good brand name for someone looking for an item which is a cut above the average. In my opinion they are to audio what a company like LG or Samsung is to TV display.
When my old generation MuVo did finally conk out after a couple of years, I straight away set out to replace it with another one.......except that the blocky old MuVo seemed to be phased out and untraceable, replaced by this new, strange, white 'chewing gum strip' device. Intrigued and attracted by it's fair price and my residing brand loyalty, I went ahead and bought one. As it seemed to be a completely redesigned and repackaged product, I was taking a slight leap in assuming it would be just as good, despite the lack of a screen or an adjustable equaliser.
However, what it lost in functions and components was made up for very nicely. It's clear to see that the MuVo name has been redirected away from normal MP3 playing towards a more specialised, ultra-lightweight and low footprint portability. I myself use a digital player for listening whilst doing activities and exercising. The old-gen MuVo accomplished this, but this rebooted version excels at it. Having such a low weight, it will not jingle annoyingly in your shorts or jump out of your pocket when training, easily forgotten about whilst you go around doing your thing. The physical dimensions are remarkable and are probably the main appeal, being very thin, barely longer than your index finger and not a whole lot wider - the general build quality and solid feel is also something to be recognised, owing in part to that small size.
There are no AAA batteries to worry about, and the battery life defies it's tiny size, being self-contained. Recharging occurs simply by docking with a USB port on your computer, as is loading music and audio onto it. Treated very similar to a USB penstick (it is barely bigger than one) there are no complications to it. No syncing software or hoops to jump through - just throw your folders full of music onto it and they'll be managed as such. Whereas some players are fussy and need to convert WMA files before playing, the MuVo needs no such attention. Handy then, as most people who copy their CD's to their computer for easier access would have done so in a WMA format if they've used Windows' built-in software.
A slide-on lid keeps the USB connector concealed when not moving music between it and your computer, though Creative seem to have followed the baffling technique of incorporating a lanyard/keyring loop - on the lid rather than the player itself. I wouldn't trust the lid to hang on to the rest of the unit if it was dangling around my neck so this is a bit of a pointless addition there.
The handful of buttons the new MuVo does have are admittedly a bit on the micro-scale. It's not always easy to press it's flush-fit buttons without having it in your hand to see what you're actually doing. A slider on the left is used, with a little flick, to jump to the next folder, or set to shuffle tracks. On the right side, a Bass button can be pressed to cycle through normal, low or high bass. Unfortunately, the more bass you introduce, the more you lose from general volume and high-end clarity. This is as far as it goes to provide an EQ function, and sometimes it is appropriate. In noisy environments, disengaging bass boost will make things crisper and clearer whilst you're out and about - or if you're laid in bed just listening to whatever, bass boost can add some warmth to the sound. Smack bang in the centre are the play controls. The volume and next/previous track controls are all on one centric ring which surrounds the play button. It's not a very intuitive layout and over time my player has become less 'affirmative' when pressing these buttons. It will still do what I ask, but I won't feel much of a 'click' as I do so, probably just due to a bit of grit between the surgically-spaced components. The centre play button doubles as a power on/off button by holding for a moment, and the provision for a reset of the device is there too with a button tucked very much out of the way.
The MuVo gains point for being easy to use whilst connected to a PC, but loses it again when it comes to the fumbling affair of cycling through tracks and using the tightly-packed buttons without a screen. At the end of the day, you're buying it to listen to audio, not look at tiny LCD screens or admire the buttons. Where the MuVo comes into it's own is on the long runs, or the lengthy cycles, or the big journeys. Leave it in your coat pocket doing the job it was designed to do and you will appreciate the big bonuses of having such a slim, convenient device.
Regard the MuVo as a player for active, agile people with less things to go wrong with it. I've enjoyed mine for a couple of years and can surely expect a few more to go.
Summary: Not a show-pony player, but instead is a tough and minimalistic music player. No more, no less.
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