The Zen's menu, organised in a list that you scroll up and down, reveals the full functionality of the player with options for Microphone, Photos, Music, Videos, FM Radio, Extras, Memory Card and Settings.
The microphone is a straightforward voice recorder that records in WAV format, perfect for execs on the go or those prone to important out-loud ramblings, and it worked fine. The FM radio is a nice feature and something the iPod has yet to offer, despite the pleas from fans. With its 32 station pre-sets, it'll serve those who want to catch with the news or get fed up of their playlists.
Photos display well on the luscious screen - more of which later - and can be added by simple dragging and dropping them onto the Zen's icon in Windows. Pics load quickly.
The Extras menu gives you date and time settings as well as Tasks, Organizer and Calendar functions. These have to be synced through Creative's software with Microsoft Outlook so we feel, unlike the iPod Touch - which has just been granted direct calendar editing with the 1.1.2 firmware update - these are not features the average consumer will take advantage of.
The Zen takes SD cards and the new high-capacity SDHC boys, so buy a 4GB player, stick a 32GB SDHC card in - bank balance permitting - and you've got a really respectable media capacity on a teeny-tiny player. It's quick too: just stick the card in, select the Memory Card option and browse away.
Love it! Thanks for the heads up. I will def be getting one of those T-shirts!
Creative Zen? *shudders*
I have a Zen V, and I thought I'd have a shufty at this review to see what the opinion was.
I take it that the sound processing unit is entirely different to that on the Zen V, which is, frankly, atrocious. Using Shure E2Cs [reasonable headphones] I get lots of low end distortion on Nine Inch Nails tracks with lots of lovely bass. Except with the Zen I just get it crapping out and buzzing. Regardless of the settings for the bass in the equaliser, and the bass boost setting itself.
It's not the headphones, as the problem doesn't exist with my iRiver H320 [the Zen was a workaround till I get a new battery/less watt-hungry HD for the H320], my laptop [ubuntu], nor my desktop [XP] regardless of how I set the bass.
Oh, and the oLED screen started getting dead pixels within weeks.
And another thing - why can't I just create the folder structure that I want, rather than relying on ID3 tags? I have rakes of files mixed up by mates and pupils at the school I work with that either have incomplete tags or none at all, and my Zen just won't see them. With the H320, you just drill down to the folder, Explorer style.
And *another* thing, unrelated to the Zen but hell, I'm on a roll, why the hell do you want 'touch' controls on something you will have in your pocket 90% of the time? I don't want to take it out of my pocket every time I want to skip a track.
I'm sure the Zen is a good little player, but the touch controls and [I expect] the same transfer system as my Zen V means I won't be getting one any time soon.
*goes off to get ibuprofen for rant induced headache, and to hunt ebay for H320 batteries and HDs*
Sound quality and volume?
So compared to the Ipod nano, assuming I am playing a high bitrate mp3 which actually sounds better?
And what about the volume ?
My Ipod nano (fatty) does of course come with the EU crippled sound volume, which basically means even with inear phones (Sennheiser CX300) listening to quieter classical music on the street is nigh on impossible.
I have even resorted to using a boosteroo amplifier, which of course is another device to carry around with me.. more leads etc..
Has anyone directly compared the volume between the cripplied ipods and the Zen?