A few months ago I received a notification on my Apple iPod Touch that I couldn't keep some of my metronome apps (I'm a musician) as I had to upgrade to 3G. Instead of shelling out a few hundred quid I settled to simply buying a metronome, and a Creative Zen Style 100.
Now, this does exactly what you'd expect from an mp3 player, no more, no less. It keeps your 8GB worth of tracks in something the size of a matchbox and it's easy to access them via the user interface. In terms of durability, mine has been through hell and back and still lives to tell the tale so I believe these are actually very strong little bits of hardware. The screen is clear, and the background and menus are customisable for maximum user ease. Another plus for me is the Custom EQ function, as a musician I like to make sure the headphones I'm using sound their best, and for learning parts I like to tweak the EQ to pick out subtle nuances. Zen's computer alternative to iTunes, Creative Centrale, is simple to use and shouldn't take long for you to get to grips with (although it offers no buying music option, it does organise media easily).
The cons are obvious, it has a small screen so the video/picture capabilities are limited at best, although the picture is clear, it's still small! The earphones that came with it are not the best, although they are quite comfortable. The other thing worth noting is that the short USB lead that came with it is easy to lose, so make sure you know where it is!!
Great little mp3 player, far more than I was expecting for this price, well worth your money, but if you want to have your pictures and videos in the same device as well then opt for the more expensive Zen products, or indeed Apple or Samsung.
This Creative Zen is a breeze to use, and seems to last for ever. I Use it mainly in the gym for an hour per day and maybe sometimes at work if there are no bosses in, and it seems to last a whole week without needing a recharge. if not longer. The sound quality is as great as you would expect within this price range. The provided earplugs are good quality, but I prefer my skull candy headphones cause they fit me much better. The Screen is of a very good quality, great contrast, and good for watching TV clips on the go, but the video playback does drain the battery life a hell of a lot quicker than just the music player.
As for any software that comes with it, I cannot comment on, I never installed any. I just plugged it in, and manage it all via Winamp. It works fine this way, and I don't have to deal with more pointless software.
This is a great MP3 player for people who do not want to conform to the masses, n spend pointless amounts of money on a fancy iPod that does exactly the same.
I found the Zen Style very easy to use.
All of the software is pre-loaded into the player so that when you first plug it in, you can install straight to the computer so that there's no fiddling with discs!
This review isn't about the software it comes with, I'll just say that it's brilliant - like iTunes but without all the restrictions!
I own quite a few MP3 players and this would rank amongst the best. I've compared it to my Walkman A828 and the sound output is definitely on-par. I even go on to say that it is better than a lot of the iPod/iPhone's I've tested in the past.
I've never had any problems with transferring music or playback with any of the songs I've put on this player, you just simply drag and drop the files as you would in a data-stick transfer!
The menu system is extremely intuitive. The battery life is great. One charge tends to last me at least four days of commute usage and it charges while it syncs with your computer, so if you're anything like me, it'll never run out!
If you're a bass freak, the EQ has 8 presets and the ability to customize a preset to your own preference though I must say I found the bass very heavy towards the top end, almost distorting in some places.
The build quality is moderate. Obviously it's made of cheaper materials but it still has a solid feel when you hold it. And I'd say it looks more expensive than the price point.
The Creative Zen is the latest in a long line of portable music players from the company. This Zen is very user intuitive and I found it easy to navigate around my collection. The screen is high quality as you would expect from an mp3 with video playback. I found uploading music to it very easy although it seemed to take a while, that could just be my PC though. I like the stylish design of it, it does need a regular clean due to fingerprints, fluff in pockets etc. The sound quality is good, and the earphones supplied are good enough to not want to replace them, if the lead is a little on the short side. It is small enough to comfortably fit into trouser pockets. The battery life is very good, i charge mine once a week based on use of a couple of hours a day going to work.