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Creative Zen Microphoto 8 GB

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    11 Reviews
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      27.12.2011 01:47
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      Very competitive price and well thought out MP3 player.

      At Christmas I like to treat myself aswell as others. I don't count them as Christmas gifts as such, but I buy myself items I want, making sure i don't write them on my list to Santa of course! I were on the lookout for a new MP3 player for next years holidays as there are always bargains around, so I gave one of my old players to my dad, I suppose you could say to 'justify' the purchase. Anyway, onto the player I bought. This is the Creative Zen Microphoto 8GB. Priced at around the £80 mark I managed to pick mine up for £55, so I thought it was reasonably good value.

      One of the main reasons for buying this MP3 player (and to justify its purchase!) was the fact that it is really a four-in-one device. I can store images on it and use it as a voice recorder. It also has an FM Radio and organiser, the latter isn't something I ever use on any device - my life simply isn't busy enough!

      Once you begin using the Zen Microphoto you will realise you don't need to justify the purchase or the pricetag. The design is one of a modern and attractive look, also incorporating large buttons for ease of use and a clean finish to the lines. You really wouldn't think this model had been around since the 'mid-noughties'.

      The main reason anyone would look to purchase an MP3 player is for its ability to play music. The sound quality is often very much down to the earphones used, but the player itself plays a very important role in the sound quality, too. This MP3 player gives a high quality sound, meaning that the player will make the most of even the high-end earphones on the market. I havn't had any complaints as far as sound quality is concerned, and I am most impressed with just how clear the sound is.

      Another consideration is ease of use. I find music is effortless to upload to the player, though I do have past experience of carrying out such a task in the past. The instructions are sufficient however, so even beginners will find the process a lot simpler than they may have anticipated. The software is easy to install and the instructions will guide you through the uploading process and also the day-to-day operation of the device. Creative really could show some of the larger technology companies a thing or two when it comes to user-friendly text.

      Listening to music once uploaded to the MP3 player is a real joy. Operation is easy to control and as there are just 6 buttons on the front of the device there is little to go wrong. The first button is Play/Pause, then there is a button for Skip Forward and also Skip Backward. The fourth button is the Menu button, then we have the Scroll Bar and finally the Return button. To the top of the player is the On/Off button, this also allows you to 'lock' the player, an important feature for those wishing to use the player on the go.

      I find the menu easy to navigate, and control of the music library, photo's and radio, for example, is really simple. There are a few handy features including the ability to be able to sort songs by genre and how popular they are to you. The photo album feature is a bit of a mystery, as there is no camera. I think the idea behind this is to allow you to upload images to the player so you can keep a personal picture album with you on your travels, which is a neat idea, though some may find it pointless/useless.

      Battery life is a function I also have no problem with. I have never considered it to be poor, though it needs charging a couple of times a week with heavier use. The package includes a simple USB charger. If you don't own a great deal of technology within your home you may not have a socket USB adaptor, though these can be purchased online for a few pounds. I have a few of them in my house, so I didn't mind the lack of power socket charger, it is done to save on production costs.

      Overall I surprised with the variety of functions this player has and as it is reasonably well priced I can't fault it. There is seriously nothing I am annoyed with. I expect that this MP3 player will last me a long while yet, partly due to the quality feel of the player.

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        20.08.2011 20:05
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        very good buy

        I honestly cannot remember when I got this mp3 player. It was at least 4 years ago though and probably longer. The fact that I have not replaced this player yet probably gives you an indication of how much I love it! I got it initially because I didn't want to pay the price of an ipod when there were other options out there that I felt were equally as good.


        This player looks really great and even now I still think it is modern and attractive. Mine is the black version with a white case on the back and it lights up a lovely blue colour. The combination of colours is great and looks really classy. I was surprised when I got this player as to how small it is. It is more bulky than the modern ipods but still much smaller than my mobile phone and easily fits in a pocket. The screen is just less than half the size of the player which makes it a really good size.


        Ok, so the main reason I got this product was to listen to music. It performs this function very well. Adding music to the player is easy using the software provided with the player. The software is also easy to install and very user friendly. The instructions provided with the player tell you all you need to know. Listening to the music is also easy and the quality of the sound is great. I have obviously had to replace the headphones that I originally got with the player but all of the ones I have used have worked well.


        There are 6 buttons on the front of the player. These are the play/pause button, the skip forward and skip backword buttons, the return button, the scroll bar and the menu button. The small number of buttons makes the player really simple to use. On the top of the player there is the on/off button which also doubles as the lock. The buttons are really touch sensitive and they all still work just as well as when I got the player.


        The menus are really simple to use and give you all the usual options like music library, now playing, photos, radio and system. I'm very untechnically minded and I still find the menus really simple to use and can work my way around quite easily. Even creating playlists is easy and the DJ option is great. This gives you lists of songs like your favourites, least played and sorts songs by genre.


        I don't really understand the photo function of this player. There is no camera and I don't really know why I would want to store all my photos on my mp3 player just to look at every so often. It also would use up memory so I have never really used this function.


        I have used the radio function which was also easy to use and quite a good feature. I wasn't expecting to get a radio included with the player so it was a bit of a bonus.


        The player has 8GB of memory which I know is quite small compared with what is available today. However, I have never come close to filling the 8GB and unless you really do have a lot of music it will probably be adequate. Apparently it will store around 4000 songs and thousands of photos. I'm not sure if this means you can store more songs if you have less photos or if it means either of the options.


        The battery life is still really good and I can play music for a good few hours before having to charge it. It did last longer when I first got the player but I can't complain after this long! The one annoying thing about charging this player is that it only comes with a USB charger. My brother bought me a mains charger about a year after I got the player which is much more useful.


        I am very impressed with the durability of this mp3 player. It has survived several years of use, being carried around in multiple handbags, travelled to several hot foreign countries, been dropped in sand, water and from a height and is still working. I feel this is really impressive bearing in mind that most stuff I have I break in some way.


        When I got this mp3 player it cost around £100 which bearing in mind how long it has lasted was a bargain. I had a quick look on amazon and you can pick one of these up for under £50 now which is a very good deal.

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          13.03.2010 16:23

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          Great product if you want to avoid giving Ipod more money!

          I didn't want to give in to the Ipod's huge market share by buying one of their products, so I bought this one, in the lovely pink!

          I have found it to be a great product, in particular, I love the fact that you can listen to the radio on it. I also use the DJ function a lot- you can choose whether to listen to favourite songs, or songs you don't often listen to, or an album of the day. The battery seems to last a good few hours and the uploading software is great, I use Windows media player and the plug in to that is very good. I have had no issues at all with the sound quality, it's clear and crisp.

          On the downside, the buttons are very sensitive, and easy to press by mistake- takes quite a while to get the hang of. Also, because Ipod has such a huge influence on the market, when you go to hotels, often the speakers they have in the room don't accomodate this player, which is slightly irksome. Oh, and also, you have to be very careful when buying the chargers, I went through 2 unsuccesful purchases before finding one that worked- I would make sure that when you purchase a charger you buy a creative labs one rather than chance buying one that doesn't charge it.

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          31.07.2009 13:42
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          The market for these things evolves too fast and you can now find a "better bang for your buck"

          This is still my MP3 player to date. I used it a lot to survive the Parisian chaos on rush hours when I first got it as a thesis gift. Nowadays, and mainly after acquiring a decent hifi system, it mostly sits in my car and is used on longer trips to feed the car audio system.

          The device is solidly built and feels sturdy, not like some that you are afraid to break them by just holding them. Of course this comes with a slight drawback, which is its weight. Not that it is overly heavy but you can feel the weight. It uses a 8 GB hard drive that can cause you grief if you drop it, but I found with my own mistakes that it can actually handle some bumping around. This disk space, you may think, will not get you far, but do you really need to carry around more than that?

          The screen uses OLED technology and is quite good, with very bright and vivid colors, although one is left wishing it was a little larger. It also has a blue glowing light around it that I find can be a bit annoying but I guess this is a personal preference. You can use several play modes and you have an integrated radio tuner. The battery will normally last for a good 6-8 h of continuous play.

          Sound quality is pretty good with the supplied headphones but I find the bass to be quite tiny... However, the thing I dislike the most is the fact that you cannot have album art being displayed. With such a nice screen and largish storage space it is a crime to have omitted that. What's worse, despite the many user requests, Creative never bothered to include this feature in a software upgrade.

          I'm still happy with it but I'll look for something with a bigger screen and better features for my next player.

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            05.07.2009 08:44
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            Its quite a good alternative to an Ipod if you don't mind the extra weight and the cheaper price

            At first glance, the Creative Zen Micro Photo could be mistaken for the Ipod Nano.
            It is a hard disk player, which explains its heavier weight compared to other players of the same size. The 8GB memory capacity is ample for the average user.

            It also supports both WMA and MP3 audio file formats. Its file transfer rate is quite fast, an average it took 2.2 secs to transfer 10 megabyte of audio files.
            Its interface is also simple and straightforward. It is easier to control the player using the buttons rather than its scroll wheel. It also has a few extra functions in addition to the bog-standard features, including radio capabilities, photo viewing, direct recording from the radio or through its own build in microphone to make voice recordings.

            Other functions' include a clock, calendar, timer and even a feature to store contacts which can be then synchronized with Microsoft Outlook.

            When using the supplied headphones, it gave a average sound quality that was well balanced. Upon using an additional pair of headphones, the sound was slightly more clear and crisp.

            On average, the battery provided 10 hours of continuous audio playback after a full charge, which is quite standard.

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              02.12.2008 20:20

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              If you aren't bothered with the ugly design, this is good media player with a good storage capaci

              I bought the Micro Photo 8 a few weeks ago. So far so good, the sound quality is very good (with supplied ear buds, which have a "Dynamic Response Bass' support). The sound quality is easy adjustable by using the standard equalizers or you can make your own equalizer setting. The control of the device is in the beginning rather difficult to use, but you get used to it after a while. The touchpad is not always precise, because it sometimes detects a click even though it was not the intention to click on it. Furthermore, the player has more than enough storage space. Music and
              photos can be easily transferred with the software that is included. What I do regret is that there
              is no charger supplied with it. You can only charge the player through the PC (with the USB 2.0 cable that is included). However, a charger for the Creative Zen MicroPhoto can be purchased through various Internet sites (including those of Creative itself). The manual gives only the basic functions, while much more is possible with the device. I am very satisfied with it, although the fact that the battery life could have been better.

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              14.06.2008 11:51
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              great

              This is not a bad mp3 player. with 8GB you practically have an unlimited amout of songs that you can put on it. its smooth touch buttons are a great feture once you get used to them. it is simple to use and has many extra features like a microphone, calender, organiser and many more. this handy gadget also lets you store and veiw pictures and it can be used as a memory stick aswell. when playing music you can have it onmany different play modes like random, reapte track, repeate all. you can also create playlists which i find very helpfull especcially when you have so many songs to choice from. this mp3 player also lets you search an artist that is stored on tour mp3 which is always usefull. this is also very easy to use an upload songs from your computer. overall this 8GB mp3 is definatly worth the price.

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                13.06.2008 12:19

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                id give this a 7/10 and would reccomend this as a alternative to an ipod

                okay this mp3 player, what can i say?
                although this player isnt as up to date as bigger names such as ipod this mp3 player offers great value for money and has many many features that are commonly desired in an mp3 player. One thing that can be said is that this mp3 player has an original stylish look that will be envied by your friend if you o deside to buy this product. Aswell as this this mp3 player offers a huge 8gb of memory which is enough to store up to and over 2000 songs, however once the memory is nearly full the player does tend to react slow on its touch sensetive buttons, which leads me onto my next point. this mp3 player boaste touch sensetive buttons as an advantage however mastering the technique of using these buttons is hard to gain. more features that this product boasts is an inbuilt radio which can be recorded as i rarely make use of this function because the quality is very poor so i wouldnt buy this product on the basis of this feature as well as this the mp3 player has a photo viewr function and you can set photos as your background however browsing photos can be a chore due to the slow reaction speed.

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                15.04.2007 22:23
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                A superb and reasonably priced mp3 player, and a great alternative to ipod's.

                I purchased my microphoto about 6 months ago as a replacement for my much loved ipod mini. To be honest I have always been an ipod fan, however I had problems with the ipod breaking, therefore upon choosing a replacement I decided to shop around for a different brand. The result - a Zen microphoto. It appeared to be a smart looking, reasonably priced player, with loads of cool 'extra' features, which really grabbed my attention, such as a radio, voice recorder and the ability to store photos. Generally, I am pleased with the purchase, and it certainly matches if not exceeds my previous ipod, however it is not perfect, and as always there are some negatives to the player.

                The first positive of the microphoto is its relatively small size, meaning that it can easily fit into most pockets, however it is quite bulky (it has a depth of 1.7cm), therefore if wearing tighter fitting clothing such as jeans, fitting it into the pocket can sometimes be an issue.
                The microphoto also looks extremely smart and stylish compared with many other mp3's in the same price bracket, and you can choose from a choice 10 different cover colours, which I think makes the microphoto feel much more personal to you.
                The battery life of the microphoto also first rate, and far exceeds any of my previous mp3 players. I have often used it for seemingly days on end before having to recharge the battery. Also an added benefit is that you can take the battery out yourself (unlike ipods), and so if the player does ever need a replacement battery, this can be done quickly and without having to send the microphoto away to have it changed.
                The 262,144 colour OLED display means that the screen quality of the Zen is fantastic, and this means that any photos uploaded onto the player look equally good. Sound quality on the Zen is also of an excellent standard, however I found that that the supplied earphones didn't fit my ears very well, and they felt rather large and uncomfortable after using ipod headphones for so long (although they're probably fine if you get used to them).

                On the other hand however, I feel the microphoto's screen size is rather small, meaning that although picture quality is excellent; the size of the photos is slightly disappointing. Though if like me and you're not all that concerned about using the Zen to view photo's, then this shouldn't be too much of an issue.
                Another downside is that the player will not enable you to view any photos while listening to music, only one or the other. This can be annoying, although you perhaps have to ask yourself just how frequently you will want to do both things at the same time, and whether this is a valid reason not to buy one.

                The final negative aspect to the microphoto is the touchpad sensitivity, meaning that scrolling through to find a particular song can be difficult (you can alter the touchpad sensitivity but I don't find this helps greatly). However, again this probably just takes time to get to grips with, and I have to admit that scrolling through to find a particular song has become much easier the more I have used the player.

                Therefore, overall the Zen microphoto is relatively good value for money, as it is smart and compact, with a excellent screen and sound quality. However the drawbacks are its limited screen size, coupled the fact that music and photos cannot be accessed at the same time, and the sensitivity of the touchpad, which can make selecting songs a challenge.

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                  09.11.2006 03:12
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                  Never had an iPOD, but I know it's better because I never saw an ad for this product outside the web

                  The very first MP3 player I bought was the Creative Zen Micro Photo 8 GIG player. Cleverly it quadruples as a voice recorder, photo album, FM radio and organizer which consists of an Outlook sync capable calendar, task list and contacts list. I researched this purchase well before plunking down $179.00 primarily because I wanted nothing to do with iPOD. It was my opinion that Apple used excessive marketing strategies to force these MP3 players down our throats. I did not yield. I waited and waited and waited until finally…my wife let me buy one.

                  $179.00 plus NYC tax, plus the purchase of a charger and I was on my way to the adventure of tuning out society and tuning in ANYTHING I wanted to listen to from Bach and the Beatles to Indie porn groove. Well, I swear I never listened to any form of porn groove, what ever that is, well at least intentionally! Any who, I knew I had to buy a charger, the only real disappointment in this purchase. No biggie, about $19.00. Once I got it home, I set to charging the player which took about 5 hours to max out. Then, I installed software and read a little of the instruction book and set the thing up. It worked as expected. Lo and behold, there were songs on it already. Good ones too courtesy of emusic.com. Since I only read a little of the book on purpose, it was my intention to see if the player and accompanying software were intuitive. I was impressed at how fast I caught on to the mechanics of the player’s features for finding and playing music. Also how easy it was to run through ample menus which can help one do anything the player is capable of.

                  Over the next few weeks I experimented with many different types of music and at the same time, learned the nuances of the Creative Zen. I am ok with the touch/slide mechanisms of the keypad but do find the sensitivity to be excessive even on lowest setting. Thankfully there is a lock pad feature to keep accidental touches during play from interrupting the music. If you do not utilize this feature, the mere effort of placing the small, comfortable and ergonomically designed player into your pocket can pause, stop, change the music you are listening to. I had read reviews about this complaint and wondered why the reviewer did not use this feature. Perhaps it is an upgrade since there were a lot of these statements on the web. Regardless of intuitive key padding, it does not respond at times the way I would like it to. This is the only other drawback in addition to the charger issue that I can make.

                  Here is a summary list of the best features:

                  Does much more than play music. (See above)
                  Comes in really neat and interesting colors-a pleasure to look at.
                  Sounds as perfect as a CD if you download at 192 kbps quality or better.
                  Holds more than enough music to entertain for hours.
                  Easy to use software for transferring music or manipulating tags.
                  Nice feel in the hand; stores easily in a shirt pocket without feeling weighty.
                  Reasonably priced. A great cost to value ratio.
                  You can create play lists on the fly while listening to music.
                  The player is actually a hard drive which can be used as a file transfer medium like a USB flash card.
                  Removable/replaceable battery.
                  Display is easy to read and appealing to the eye. Can be managed to display in numerous themes to compliment face color.
                  It is not an iPOD!

                  Here is a summary list of objections:

                  Keypad is ultra sensitive-takes some getting used to.
                  Does not come with a charger, just the USB wire which does charge off your computer.
                  The standard white casing is ceramic coated and can chip if dropped.
                  Standard earphones are average at best. Better to use ear buds, anyway.
                  No album art displayed.
                  Can not listen to music while perusing your photos.

                  I hope this was helpful as I sincerely enjoy this new toy of mine.

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                    11.07.2006 17:46
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                    Great value for money multi-functional player that beats the ipod hands down

                    After having 3 ipods die on me i decided to make a change and ended up purchasing a white creaive zen micro photo. I have found it overall to be much better than those damn ipods.
                    It's colour screen can be customised, the sound quality is very good (although could go a little louder). I can get 4000 songs on my Zen and it also stores photos, has a calendar etc- everything the ipod does but it is CHEAPER!! It also has a radio and a voice recorder which are nice little extras.

                    Only probs i have had are with charging it. You have to do it through your computer and a USB which is annoying as it means you can't listen to t while your charging. Honestly, it has crashed a few times but is very easy to fix as it comes up with a problem screen giving you options which have always managed to fix the problem. Another plus is that the battery can be taken out- which means if it dies you can just get a new one.

                    Just one other tiny gripe is that you can't listen to music while looking at your photos but hey, that's not the end of the world.

                    One last tip is to not be boring and think 'white goes with everyone' like did. Live a little and get a purple one.. or maybe orange.. or red lol- they look much better.

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