Sad to say that the bundled phones are a bit two-bob. Stick 'em in the bin and buy a decent pair.
Video playback from the 224 x 176 screen is rather limited. To get anything to play on the Fuze you will need to transcode it using Sansa Media Converter which can be downloaded from the SanDisk site. The Converter pumps everything out as MPEG 4 20f/s DivX, which looks OK but no more. Let's be honest, who actually buys an MP3 player with a 1.9in screen to watch video anyway? The Fuze also supports JPEG image files.
Colours to suit all moods
Media transfer is straightforward. The player can be set to either MTP, MSC or Auto-Detect so you can either sync up via a desktop media player; drag and drop if you are using Windows; or just drag and drop if you are a Mac or Linux aficionado. The Fuze also comes with a handy on-the-go playlist feature - adding a track simply requires you to hold down the centre button while it's playing.
SanDisk claims the Fuze delivers 24 hours' continuous play from a full battery charge. We got 21, so no complaints on that front.
In the value for money stakes, the Fuze compares well with the iPod Nano being about £20 cheaper like for like. Of course, you can currently get an 8GB Micro SDHC card for less than £50 which means you could end up with a 16GB player for less than £150, and that isn't bad at all.
SanDisk is excited by the idea that we'll soon all be hot-swapping our media from our phones to our cars to our hi-fi systems to our MP3 players. Maybe. In the meantime, we just like the idea of a small Flash-based MP3 player that sounds great and comes with the option to add a shedload of extra memory yet doesn't make us go poking about deep into the player's menu structire to find the content it holds, as we had to do with iRiver's E100.
SanDisk Sansa Fuze
Why should I have to cover the cost of semi-average headphones that I am never going to use???? At least if they are junk it is only adding a few pence to the cost of the player. If anything, I wish they didn't include any headphones!
sounds good to me
My old sansa takes forever to power up and refresh database and i had to replace the battery (once)....but that they made VERY easy.
Speaking of very easy...now if I could just try the controls....
IMHO, sounds very good
I had the pleasure of getting the Fuze for myself and it sounds a tad better than a nano a friend of mine has. Using the same headphones (we used a sennheiser px200), the fuze was, literally, music to my ears. However, what really impressed me was the memory expansion. I'm looking forward to Sandisk releasing the 16GB microsdhc card soon. A firmware update supporting OGG would be nice.
...and I'm a big fan of the Cowon range. If they do get good OGG/FLAC support, I might be looking at that to replace my loverly D2 (which has 8GB onboard + 16GB SDHC).
The drawbacks with the D2 at present are a slightly flaky database when it comes to indexing the OGG files and really, the device is overpriced - they tend to cost more than similar Apple offerings, and are less styley. Although they sound fabulous - I had great sound out of the box with the D2, and gave up on getting anything good out of the iPod, even with Rockbox and every kind of sound tweak tweaked. The D2 also takes forever to boot when the database needs updating, and it irks me that there isn't a setting for it to automatically resume the music after starting up (it does resume from the track you're playing, but you need to select the Music option and then hit Play).
Assuming the Sandisk offering sounds as good a Cowon beastie, the price is definitely right, it doesn't look fugly, so it'd definitely be an option worth looking into.
..an updated version of my E265. Great player, I would second all the positives you noted. From the review it seems they have cured the only fly in the ointment of the earlier player, the start up time. On my older model, every time it is turned on it refreshes the audio database which means it can take 10 secs or more before the device is usable. If this has been sorted then I will certainly consider a purchase.