The Sansa e250 was my first real MP3 player (aside from a disaster player which managed to break within the first month by leaving it in the sun), and honestly, it really helped get me into music. It's sleek if not so sophisticated, it's subtle and yet not too small to be practical, it's extendable but has a modest starting disk space and it's easy to alter the firmware (the software that provides the interface) without too much hassle. It's a great little MP3 player.
Sound Player - The sound quality of this player is fantastic, and it allows for the storage of many songs with its base storage of just two gigabytes. It can accept the usual formats with its original firmware (MP3, WMA), and more less usual ones if you choose to modify the firmware. The only niggle that I have relating to the sound is the fact that it doesn't come built in with a "play out loud" mode when there is no headphones plugged in, it just stays silent in a form of MP3 player protest until you give it something to play into.
Ease of Use - This is not Apple. It does not give you the "No, don't drag your files on, use iTunes, no NOT MediaMonkey NOT Winamp, iTunes. Now you're going to have to format your MP3 player because Winamp did it wrong you IDIOT" Apple treatment. In fact, the Sansa experience is as far from that as humanely possible, you can't use iTunes, but you can use just about any other piece of software or you can simply drag your MP3 into the audio folder in the device's hard drive if you'd prefer it. The next time it turns on, all the things that were with the MP3 you placed on the Player will appear (with lyrics and album art if you also dragged them on with it)
Recording - This MP3 player has the prominent feature of a sound recorder. That's not really much of a shock, as a lot of phones do and so do a lot of MP3 players. The surprise is that it outclasses the lot, each of my friends' phones that I had heard within an English lesson on Transcripting was muffled and incomprehensible, whereas mine was smooth to listen to and I could analyse each word as it was said, while the others struggled to understand what was even being said in some examples. You might not think you need a recording device in the MP3 player, but it's a good one at that and I'd say it's always useful to have.
Extensive - There is the ability to place an SD Card of varying sizes into the MP3 player to allow for more songs and storage. It's a brilliant idea, especially since two gigabytes for some music enthusiasts is next to nothing, and it adds limitless amounts of songs into the MP3 player (depending of course on the size of the card). You cannot, however, replace the base hard disk that it comes with.
Battery - It's not got a bad Battery Life, clocking in at about five hours, but that's not what really stands out. Again, in a move against Apple tradition, this music player allows you to remove it's battery and order a new one without sending your product off for repair with a ridiculous amount of money for ransom. It's rechargeable with a (rather annoying) lead that has an odd nobly end to it, much like that of an iPod Touch. It charges quick enough and can have you on the go again in no time.
Video - There is video playback on this MP3 player (alas no recording), but there isn't a lot of point. Without modified firmware getting it onto the MP3 player is an exercise in frustration and the screen is really too tiny to watch anything more than a few minutes of video on. Trust me, watching an entire movie on it is borderline impossible, as I discovered with the rather disappointing The Road.
Modifiable - The firmware that I keep babbling on about throughout this review is known as Rockbox, essentially a piece of software that overwrites the original software on the MP3 player and replaces it with its own. It adds a few applications that really add to the appeal of the MP3 player (Asteroids with a twisty wheel as control is brilliant) and makes it a lot easier to add video to your MP3 player as well as allows you to modify audio on the go (speed, pitch, frequency, crossfades etcetera). It's unlikely that I'd use this media player quite so much without it. It also saved me one time at school with its Scientific Calculator application.
Durability - Well, I have had it for four years now, and if that is not durability after being dropped countless times, scraped by keys (retaining a massive scratch) and smacked accidentally into a car from its headphones, I don't know what is.
Conclusion - I wouldn't even think about using this without the Rockbox firmware, but with it, it's a fantastic device that is extremely open and easy to use. I highly recommend it, but because of its default firmware I am only going to reward it a total three stars out of five, but get it anyway, you probably won't regret it.
My old 5GB Creative Zen MP3 player's earphone jack broke after a good 4 year use and I decided to buy a new one. At that time I was sitting in the train a lot and I needed to listen to some audio books to keep away the boredom. So I bought the SanDisk Sansa E250 mostly because I wanted an MP3 player without using special software like iTunes or such.
The Sansa supports the USB mass storage standard so you can use it with every operating system like Windows, MacOS or Linux.
Even though it only has 2GB of internal memory you can always put in a 4GB micro SD card and you got 6GB which is more than enough. The display is bright, sharp and gives a good level of contrast.
Probably the best thing you can do with it is to install the open source firmware RockBox which opens up a whole new world with nice little applications, themes and even games.
You can replace the battery pack and the backside of the device is nicely finished metal. I didn't like the "jog wheel" though, it feels a bit cheap.
The Sansa e250 is what defines a player that seems awfully similar to a remote control. Its control placed directly beneath the display screen, is very much like the ones found on the Ipod. However this one is slightly different, with its illuminated controls which makes it easier to use the player in the dark or at night.
The player also has a memory card slot, more specifically a MicroSD one, which can be used to boost the existing memory capacity if it is insufficient for your needs.
When using the supplied headphones, the sound quality is quite good, with a well balanced sound. Upon using an additional pair of headphones, there sound was more defined, with more accurate highs.
Sadly the player lacks radio capabilities. It supports quite a wide range of audio files. Its file transfer speed is quite good, on average taking about 4.5 seconds to transfer 10 megabytes of audio files.
Its battery stamina is only typical with nothing special, on average providing up to 20 and a half hours of continuous audio playback and about 3 and a half hours of continuous video playback. Its charging time is quite short, only taking half an hour to fully charge the player.
The display screen is quite small although it is not tiny, although the player supports videos and pictures. The quality and resolution of the screen is not great, therefore you might need to resize your images in order to view them on the player.