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on 3 February 2012
Since my only experience of mp3 players was from way back when, when the things were a novelty, I was pleasantly amazed when this popped through my letter box. Impressed doesn't even come close to describing it! And it is so diddy. For something that packs such a wallop it is amazingly minute. It is smaller than, and almost the same colour as the Complimints sweet mints tin, retailed by a popular high street German discount supermarket, that provides ideal protection when not in use and stuffed into a pocket or what-have-you. It would even look small, almost, in a 2-years-old's hand. Though a 2-year-old would never be able to remove it from its packaging!

The first thing I did, having recovered from the trials and tribulations of unpacking it, and enthusing over its size and sturdiness, was connect to sandisk.com, using the minuscule (c 8") usb cable that came with it, and update the software. Plug and play as easy as pie. Paying attention to the reviews I had read I selected the 'rest of the world' for better sound options when given it during set-up. (Once set-up is complete there should be no reason to return to it so the fact that it never returns is not an issue to operation so too fiddly my foot!)

Then I installed the extended memory I had bought to go with it and uploaded a weeks worth of audio books, plays and music tracks, plugged in my headphones (I didn't bother with the earbuds so cannot comment on them) and was swept away by the quality of playback.

Switching to radio I wasn't quite as impressive but I do live in a poor reception area so can't really blame the zip for that, after all the radio is an added bonus anyway. As is being able to record a program.

The microphone for the voice recorder is another amazement. In keeping with the minusculity of the unit as a whole, the hole can hardly be seen yet the quality of recording, even at arm's length, belies the truth.

The menus are fairly simple and easy to work through, with options for 'music', 'radio', 'books', 'voice' 'card (the external memory)', 'sport (the timer)' and 'settings'. To get the option to add a song to the golist just press the down arrow whilst the song is playing to call up the music options, then hit the enter button to store or remove. Well that should be how it works anyway though, for some reason, when I have been looking at the podcast contents stored under 'books' it always returns to this menu instead of the music options - haven't worked out if this is a software or behavioural issue yet.

I was perturbed that the on/off button had to be held down for a long time before it started up but have since discovered that it only requires a short press and a little patience before the logo appears as if by magic.

Complaints: I bought this for its advertised capacity to play .aac files since I have a lot of these but could only play them via my pc without going through the process of converting them first. Imagine then my disappointment, having expectantly loaded them all onto my wonderful new little toy, to discover that they were not recognised never mind played. Not a one of them. Oh, I found a solution to the problem easily enough, simply opened up a dos window and renamed them all to .m4a at one fell swoop but that isn't the point. I was under the impression that I could do a straight copy and felt terribly let down on discovering that life is just never that simple. Hence the four instead of five star rating.

Like one of the other reviewers I have also experienced the occasional bit of stuttering in reproduction but not enough to actually contemplate converting the files. Plus I'm not sure if the stuttering is indication of an inherent fault in the file since it always happens at the same point in replay - a bit like having a scratch on a vinyl record.

There is no rewind or fast forward option. Fair enough when listening to 2-3 minutes of song track but having to repeat the first 25 minutes of a chapter to catch the final 3 sentences of a book because the battery went flat goes beyond the pale!

When plugged into the pc, playback switches off so it is not possible to listen to one tune whilst uploading another or topping up the battery. And there is no warning to running out of power if you don't pay attention to the battery icon - and since the screen goes blank during playback that is easy not to do.

There seems an issue handling folders on the extended memory, for some so far unfathomable reason some but not all being renamed as 'unknown' so that isn't very helpful to organisation. And, for some reason, it lists some files outwith the folder in the top menu but not others. Maybe that is a fault, maybe it is just that I am not used to the player's foibles yet.

There is no option to rename saved radio stations rather than having to sort through a list of obscure frequencies. Having said that, being able to store the stations in the first place saves a lot of searching in future.

It also doesn't put the kettle on nor do the washing up - but then you can't have everything :-)

Complaints aside, this is wonderful piece of kit and for what you get at the price they're asking I would forgive it an awful lot more before falling out with it.
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on 18 April 2014
I used to have a Cowon iAudio 7 which broke, and I wanted a replacement which met these criteria:
* Presents itself as a Universal Mass Storage device so it works with any operating system, not just Windows
* Must not require dedicated management software such as iTunes or similar
* Allows me to play files/folders directly in ASCII order by filename instead of using ID3 tags to try to work out the intended play order.
* Doesn't force me to wade through an enormous database of artists/albums/tracks, or require me to waste time setting up playlists

The SanDisk Clip Zip meets all the criteria, and then some:
* It presents as either UMS or MTP - you choose which in the device settings
* Just drag and drop your chosen files onto the player; no extra software needed
* Allows playback of folders and files directly as well as supporting ID3 tag parsing
* Manages an enormous on-board database of artists/albums/tracks and supports playlists, too, but neither one is mandatory.
* It supports Audible files directly, without having to mess about with time-consuming conversion to MP3 first
* It's even smaller and lighter than the iAudio 7 it replaces
* It allows you to disable features you don't use, so they don't appear when scrolling through the main interface; enabling them again is just as quick

In short, I haven't yet found another player which offers such flexibility and convenience. Until finding the iAudio 7 I'd look for something which would run Rockbox, as Rockbox would offer what I wanted (with the exception of Audible support). Apparently you can stick Rockbox on this thing, too, but I shan't bother this time. The manufacturer-supplied firmware does what I need, without fuss.
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on 18 July 2015
When it worked it was the best mp3 player I could imagine.

+ small size, colour display with easy navigation
+ sturdy clip with a good grip that enabled me to do all kinds of activities like running, cycling etc. without fear of loosing mp3 player
+ easy way of dumping music to it without installation of third party software that would 'manage' my music (I hate itunes and ipod for forcing me to work with their libraries that duplicate files and put it in its own locations, forces paring with limited amount of computers or wipe stuff. In general I want to be in control of my files and clip zip was giving me this freedom)
+ good sound volume (there is an easy way to overrun the eu sound volume limit)

- battery indicator (despite little indicator I never knew how well it was charged as sometimes I could listen to it for hours and sometimes it was dying after the hour despite being 'fully charged' for a day prior usage - perhaps I have over charged it)
HUGE -! - after little over the year of usage "Not enough space for music DB. Please free 200MB" message appeared and this was the end.
-- mp3 player is no longer responsive except turning it on - just to show this error message
-- mp3 player is no longer recognised by any computer
-- all tips and tricks on all forums including sandisk forums did not help (however for a brief moment I managed my computer to see the "unknown device that was 4mb in size and was not able to be formatted. Later on it was just unknown device that even disk manager was not picking up anymore and no driver was available to make it work)
-- I have found plenty of people that experienced exactly same issue and it looks that proposed methods of fixing it haven't help anyone - or at least people did not share happy information.

You can risk and buy it as it is really nice little device, works like a miracle, you can have fun time with it, but you never know when it will have a change of heart and will die on you. I would not be that shuttered if it would physically died, but it looks like it can get into a coma like state and never wake up properly.
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on 15 October 2014
Just received this player today and have to say that I am really pleased with the audio from this tiny device, Now I tried it with a pair of Betron wood in ear phones as well as a pair of Sennheiser PX200s and they sounded quite good but just for luck and not in any way thinking that it would even work I plugged in my Grado SR125is which cost over £150 and they sounded FANTASTIC, I had turned the volume all the way up as I didn't think the Clip zip would drive these phones and they blew my ears out lol. Really loud and clear with lovely tone and this is with 192khz mp3s ( Just set it to USA or anywhere but Europe). I have a Sony NWZ-B172 and the clip zip just walked all over it. So the thing is that even with fairly high end headphones the Sandisk Clip Zip delivers. As always Format your SD card before use or you may have problems with adding or playing files then drag and drop your mp3s,Audiobooks etc plus insert your phones firmly until the connection clicks. Good buy.
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VINE VOICETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 5 January 2014
This is a superb little MP3 player.

But you may ask why would anyone want a dedicated MP3 player in these days of smartphones and tablets?

There are a couple of reasons that spring to mind.

Sound quality. This little device sounds great! Do remember (as others have mentioned) not to select "EU" as your region when setting it up though as the maximum volume will be drastically reduced.

Storage capacity. There is a growing trend with smartphones and tablets for them not to have the ability to take SD memory cards to increase storage. On a 16Gb Android device you only end up with about 11Gb of space to use for Apps, pictures, games and music. This little device will take a MicroSD HC card, so you can carry literally thousands of songs with you even if you store them in a lossless format.

Battery life. - Possibly the biggest reason of all is if you use your smartphone to play music for more than a few hours then you might not have the battery life left to make that critical phone call when you need to. This little device takes that worry away.

It really is a great little product. It is tiny, easy to use, clips on your cloths and is just great at what it does.

Paired with my new Fiio Headphone Amplifier and a set of Sennheiser Headphones I now have absolutely top quality sound with me wherever I travel.
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on 21 October 2014
I have a 8gb Sansa Clip V2 that I've had for years and still works perfectly but as I had a spare 32gb card lying about and this was only £25 I thought I'd get one so I could use the extra memory. Very happy I did as it's a cracking little player and nothing else comes close for this price. I now have a 36gb player that sounds great and fits into a matchbox, will use the older one as a spare. I did change the firmware to Rockbox though.The stock firmware isn't terrible but Rockbox is an improvement. Increases battery life when using formats other than MP3 and updates database in a few seconds. Using the standard firmaware the player updates your database everytime you disconnect from your pc and takes ages and uses half your battery life.If installing Rockbox I would recommend checking all the different themes before installing and selecting one you like, once installed you'll have a fantastic little player that you will be happy with for years.
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on 26 June 2014
I’ve used my Zip whilst walking for at least an hour each day for a couple of months now, and it hasn't given me any reason to doubt its capability to carry on working. A lot of people have reviewed it already, so there’s no point in repeating all their valid remarks.
However, as there have been a few comments about the quality of the headphones that come supplied, my own experience is that they seem fine. I like their range and depth of sound, and find that they’ve even improved the playback quality of some of the music tracks I’ve put on there. (The wide range of choices within the equaliser obviously helps.) As they presumably act as the aerial, it's also worth mentioning that the radio reception is strong and constant, which is good news for me as I live in an area which is extremely hilly with deep valleys, renowned for poor reception.
Something worth remembering is that the Zip’s battery needs to be recharged. (Yes, you've guessed that I sometimes forget!) The battery life is supposed to be up to 15 hours, but mine prefers about 12. What I don’t like is that you can’t just plug the player into a PC to recharge the battery without everything making full connection. That causes it to lose its memory as to where you were when recharging became necessary. Then, if you want to carry on listening to music from where you left off, you have to re-find the place manually, which can take forever among hundreds of tracks!
The main criticism I have about the Zip concerns the “play all” order in which “Music” tracks play. Just as Windows automatically sorts My Documents into alphabetical order, so the Zip gives you no choice over the order in which music is stored or played back. Irrespective of whether you tell it you want to listen to Artists or Albums or Songs etc, everything is then strictly played back in the neat order a computer interprets things should be in. That might sound unimportant, but it can be very irritating when it chooses to play the final track of a film soundtrack before the opening track.
A disappointment I’ve encountered is that I’ve been unable to obtain any software upgrades or even the correct full user manual from Sansa. Interestingly, Sansa don’t recognise the model number on their own site, despite following the several links provided, nor have I been able to do any better via Google. Fortunately, I’ve been able to work most things out for myself, and as the player is working all right for the simple uses I have for it, (music and radio), there doesn’t seem to be any reason to worry about upgrades.
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on 28 November 2014
I bought this to replace my old Creative Zen player which had stopped working. I read some of the one-star reviews but thought that people had just been unlucky - the five-star reviews outnumbered them by about 4 to 1. Unfortunately, I was one of the unlucky ones. Same fault that others have reported - the headphone jack has to be in exactly the right place (about 3/4 of the way in) to get any sound at all. It will be going back for a full refund.

On the positive side (to justify the one star that Amazon insist I give it!) it seems to be more Mac-friendly than the Creative Zen was. I had to use a piece of third-party software to put anything on the Zen, but the Mac sees this as an external hard disc. Also, its top volume is louder than the Zen (on the rare occasions when it transmits anything).
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on 7 May 2014
About five years ago I purchased a Sansa Clip and thought it was fantastic. It was very small so easily portable; it was cheap; the sound quality was great; you could use Windows Media Player to put music onto the player and create playlists which made life so easy.
A few months ago my old Sansa became unusable, so as I had had a great experience with it I decided to buy this SanDisk Clip Zip. I wanted more memory so I also purchased a 16GB mico SD card. Initially all went well and all of the good points mentioned above for the Sansa applied to this one. I did notice the player was very slow at starting, but this was probably due to the micro SD card. I tolerated this although I think it would be fair to say that if the player is going to take minutes to start up with a 16GB micro SD card then maybe the manufacturers should set a limit on the size because otherwise it becomes a bit misleading. Yes the player can work with such large size but given the time it takes you wish you hadn't bothered adding the extra memory. So if you are going to buy this I recommend you stick with the onboard memory or only add a few more GB via micro SD.
The problems began when I tried to charge the SanDisk from a computer which wasn't my home computer. (For some reason this player cannot be charged from the mains - which is really helpful if you are travelling around and haven't brought a PC or tablet with you! If anyone can explain this I'd appreciate it). Anyway, the player lit up as usual but after a while it did not seem to be charging. I left it for a bit to give it a chance to charge and when I returned the player was completely dead. I tried turning it on and pressing the various buttons but nothing happened. After approximately 24 hours the player miraculously came back to life when I pressed the "on" button. I couldn't understand why and gave it the benefit of the doubt............until it happened again! I have no idea what prompted it to give up the ghost but I could not continue with a player that was going to leave me high and dry for 24 hour periods whenver it felt like it.
It is a shame because this could be a really good product. But I could not tolerate a player that works in this way. If you do decide to buy it I would repeat that you should try to stick to the onboard memory if possible and to be careful how you charge it as the player can be temperamental. I would also point out that a player which has a battery life of just 15 hours should not be limiting your charging possibilities!
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on 31 May 2014
It takes AAAAAAAAAGGGGGGGGGEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSS to turn on. Over a minute for it to "boot up". Why it has an operating system, I don't know. It should be hard coded to be just an MP3 player and to turn on straight away, because that is all it is.

Then... it takes ages to navigate to the music in the internal memory:
1 Turn it on.
2 Select Music.
3 Select Folders.
4 Select Internal Memory
5 Select MTP (whatever that means)
6 Select Music
7 Navigate to the song/folder you want and select.

Alternatively you can choose Play All and then press >>| over and over until you get to the track you want. Or create a play list (also long winded).

It also takes ages to turn on, and turns on when you plug it in to charge, but stays on and drains the battery if you unplug it.

On the plus side, it works. The battery lasts a long time. The screen is visible in bright sunlight - this is the first MP3 player I have EVER owned that I could see in bright sunlight. It has physical buttons to change track, and volume which you can easily find by finger touch inside your pocket. It includes a clip so you can wear it, or use it as a hair pin.

I'm not sure why it has an FM radio though. Does FM even still exist?
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