13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars
Almost the Best., 10 Jan. 2008
Let's get something out of the way straightaway: This new Zune isn't designed to compete with the Ipod Touch or Iphone, they are in a category of their own.
If you need to, compare it with the Ipod Classic as they have similar features.
The Zune 80GB is the best MP3 player I've ever used; here are my pros and cons:
- The new Zune design makes it much more appealing than the Zune 1st Generation. It's sleek, slimmer, has a larger screen and a brand new interface.
- The glass screen is about twice the size of the Ipod Classic or Creative Zen screen, which allow for impressive, DVD-quality video display. The videos play horizontally so you can watch them "widescreen".
- The touch sensitive pad is brilliant and makes navigation extremely easy and fast.
- There is a built-in RDS FM Radio as well as Audio/Video Podcast support.
- You can connect the Zune wirelessly to your computer.
- The new Zune software is very intuitive and easy to use; you just need a few clicks to get your media collection on the device.
- The earphones are high-quality.
- The Zune isn't (yet) officially available outside the United States so there is no support for Europe and therefore, some features are unavailable. Notably, there is no access to the Zune Marketplace (which offers unprotected content unlike ITunes) and no other Zune users around to take advantage of the Wi-Fi sharing capabilities. Additionally, you might struggle to find some accessories.
- Some files are not supported by the Zune, which can be a turn-off, especially if you're used to the Creative Zen. DivX and .avi files notably are not supported, but there are excellent converters to get around this issue.
- You can only use the Zune as a Player, not a USB Storage device.
- Although the audio is excellent, there is no EQ System on the Zune.
- The battery life is about half the one of the Creative Zen or Ipod.
Conclusion: For me, the Zune 80GB is a 5 stars device because I've found ways around its main issues (access to Zune Marketplace, format conversion...) but for this review I have to take it down to 4 stars. Out of the box it doesn't offer a Marketplace in Europe, unlike the Ipod and doesn't support some files that most people use, unlike the Creative Zen (DivX, avi...) and not everyone will have the patience to get through the conversion process (although it's very easy).
In any case, it's an excellent MP3 Player.