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Ah the Sansa Fuze, probably one of the most troubling electronics I have ever had the misfortune of buying. I will note that this review is based entirely on my experiences, many people seem to have purchased this player and had no problems, so maybe I just got a lemon, but either way here we go.
I purchased the Sansa Fuze after my old 1 GB mp3 player died. I can't remember the name of that kind, but it was a Sandisk and it had served me well for over 2 years and I had been happy with it. The Fuze looked like a very cheap but powerful mp3 player, and I was happy that this one could also have pictures and videos on it, as well as the radio too.
When I purchased this player, I bought the 1-year warranty as well. At the time it seemed like a bit of a waste of money, but it turned out to a good decision. The player served me well for 11 months. However, the 12th month into my owning of it, everything just seemed to fall apart. I was getting strange error messages when transferring music onto it (the player still had almost 2 GB of full space left) and a fully-charged battery was lasting 10-20 minutes rather than 10-20 hours. I dug up my old receipt and did manage to return and get a full refund. I will say this; Best Buy was very helpful throughout the whole procedure of returning it and getting my refund, so maybe they had been seeing this a lot as returns don't usually go as quickly and smoothly as this one did.
So did I have a dud? Maybe. However, it was a very nice mp3 player for 11 months. I wouldn't buy one again but I'm sure many people are still looking for a nice alternative to an iPod, and maybe this is it for you. My only word of advice would be to purchase a warranty along with your player just to be on the safe side.. it sure saved me.
Found it a bit complicated with three settings for the USB connection, but once once I managed to work it out its a great little box. Documentary assistance pretty poor but onsite user forum I found was excellent. If you wish to only want to play music this is fantastic, although you may wish to purchase different headphones though as the ones supplied are not of the best quality. Expandable memory is great, and not universally available at this price.The price I thought was great I got it half price!!! Not sure if I would have paid the full price for this item as it was abit much. The sound and quality is really very good. The design is unique, stilish, and compact. A good shape. It does state 20 hrs battery life which mines was infact not but over all a good product. Would recomend for users that would been teenage years.
I bought one of these for my girlfriend when her Sony NW-A808 gave up the ghost. We were not disappointed. What a cracking little player for under £50. You get 4GB of space with expandable memory which is more than enough for casual users like my girlfriend. She finds it very simple to use and it is perfect for using at the gym or attaching to your car (for those lucky enough to have a headphone jack).
The style is very much like an iPod but without the price tag. The scroll wheel is good whilst not quite as slick as the iPod's. The screen is a revelation for the price and it displays videos and pictures very well. Sound quality is as good, if not better, than that of the iPod's I have tried. Feature-wise you can't go wrong with this budget player. You get sound, video, picture, FM radio, voice recording etc. all in one little player. And it is a little player at that, thinner than most mobiles and easily concealed in your pocket.
Having tried many of my friend's iPods I really wouldn't bother with them when you can get something of this quality at less than half the price. The drag-and-drop functionality of this player is also much more appealing than the awkward (in my opinion) iTunes.
To summarise, if you're looking for a low budget, easy to use, feature packed, reliable player, producing great sound, then this is the one for you.
My daughter has inherited my love of music and likes nothing better than to sing, dance or listen to music and her preferred way to listen is using the MP3 player on her phone.
I am, however, not keen on her going out and about with her phone as if she were to lose it I'd be looking at a lot of money to buy a comparable phone as a replacement.
Also, the battery life on her phone isn't brilliant and we frequently have tears when after a couple of hours listening the power cuts out.
As a result I decided to buy her an MP3 player. I was reluctant to buy her an iPod Nano due to the price so I decided to do a little research on what was on offer that wasn't produced by Apple.
I was pleasantly surprised to see a decent range of players available for a reasonable price from many outlets and did some research on all the players that both caught my eye and were within budget. One of the great things about shopping on the internet is the ability it gives you to read reviews from people who have bought in the past, and this ruled out a few models on the grounds of "cheap rubbish".
I kept being drawn towards the Sansa Fuze from SanDisk however - the price was within my budget and the features were what I was looking for. Online reviews were generally very positive. Moreover, it was available in red, which is my daughter's favourite colour!
I consulted my daughter about the aesthetics (which are all she cares about) and received the thumbs up, so I ordered one on the Argos website and duly picked it up the next day. It cost £48.69 and came with a 3" CD-ROM, a USB cable, earphones, a black protective case and the player. There was also a "mini" user guide which is useful to get you started but the main user manual is on the CD-ROM.
So what are the features of this little beauty?
It plays MP3s, WMA, secure WMA, Ogg Vorbis and Audible audio file formats. It also plays MPEG-4 videos and you can add JPEG photos, although you have to use the Sansa Media Converter software to add these files to your player, unlike MP3s which you can add directly to it. It has a 1.9" screen to view the videos and photos on and this screen is surprisingly sharp given the size.
The player also has an FM radio and voice recording and crucially for me, it can hold another 8GB through a Micro SD card - this was what made me decide to buy the player as it means the memory can be expanded to 12GB in total which will hopefully keep my daughter happy for a while.
I found the entire player very straightforward to set up - you start by inserting the CD-ROM in your computer and it will take you through the set-up process. The software you need to download is available on the Sansa website and you need to download the Sansa Firmware Updater and the Sansa Media Converter to get started. This only takes a few minutes and then you can upload songs. The CD-ROM also includes the full user manual.
I found it easiest and quickest just to cut and paste tracks on to the player and had a couple of hundred songs uploaded in no time.
I stumbled when it came to uploading videos and photos however as I had committed the usual sin of not fully reading the user manual and wasn't aware that I had to use the Sansa Media Converter to upload media to the player.
Once I had realised my mistake I managed to upload a couple of music videos for my daughter and a few photos and realised I would have to give her a short tutorial before leaving her to do it for herself.
All the common photo files are supported and the Media Converter can handle MPEG 1, AVI, dat, DVR-MS, MOV, QT, MP4, asf, wmv, 3gp/3gpp2, and DivX(ver 6.0) files.
The power switch is located at the side of the player and you slide it up to switch it on. You can also use this to lock the player's functions, which is useful if you are out running and don't want it switching off or skipping a track in error.
On the front of the player is a small "home" button you press to choose which function you want to use and then you navigate using the scroll wheel and select button. I had to fiddle about a bit at first (as ever) to work out how to change the volume but of course this is actually very straightforward if you read the instructions!
My daughter picked it up far more quickly than me, as all kids do!
The headphones that come with the Fuze are basic and, quite frankly, not very good. They are in-ear ones and don't even have a little foam cover to make them more comfortable to wear. My daughter detests in-ear headphones so these were swiftly cast aside for bulkier, but more comfortable on-ear ones. She was, however, very impressed with the sound. I found the sound quality to be comparable to my own iPod 30GB Photo which doesn't get much use these days and my Samsung Tocco phone which gets lots of use.
The battery is recharged via the USB lead you use for uploading files to the player. Battery life is good - my daughter was able to play music for the entire first day she had the player without having to recharge the battery. She did get a little panicky when the battery indicator got low and decided to stop playing it, but she probably could have played music all day without worrying about it.
Sansa claim you can get up to 24 hours for audio playback or up to 5 hours video playback so it's pretty decent.
The FM radio is fairly easy to use and you can tune it automatically using the auto preset. You can also record content from the radio, which I thought was useful but my daughter was less impressed with.
So what didn't I like? To be honest, not very much!
The only thing I can foresee being a problem is the USB charger. This is fine if you are going away and have a computer to hand for recharging, but not so good if you are travelling without one. Amazon do sell wall chargers for the Fuze for £9.99 and I can see myself having to purchase one in the not too distant future.
The player would also benefit from a clip for those who are out and about but it is small enough to slip easily into a pocket.
For the money, I think this is a great little MP3 player and while it may not be quite as stylish as a Nano, it's got the same features and a little more and is ideal for younger kids or for those of us who like a little competition for Apple in the MP3 player stakes.
The Fuze is also available in an 8GB version and in several colours including red, pink, black, blue and silver.
Sandisk Sansa Fuze 4GB is the ultimate mp3 player. I have had my Sansa Fuze for about 6 months now. I have had no problems with it and its so easy to use and its really awesome! The best things about the Sansa Fuze 4GB is that its easy to use, easily drag and drop music, including play lists, compatible with windows media player and media monkey, easy to manage. It is also small, bright, and will take almost any type of music file. You can also add images and videos to the Sansa Fuze. One of the most amazing features is that you can insert a microSD/HC into it to give you more space. It is also rechargeable and will lasts around 5 years with proper care. Also has FM Radio and record.
The bad things about the Sansa Fuze is that the battery cannot be replaced and to add videos you need to convert them with there Sansa Media Program. Also it will only last 5 years.
Overall this is the best mp3 player I have ever used.