Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Hardware Review: Creative Labs Zen Vision:M

Screen: 9 of 10
Colors, millions of colors. The screen of the Vision:M (henceforth called V:M) is very impressive in the way of colors and resolution. The only flaw I have found is that I would rather have a larger screen.

Sound: 10 of 10
Check your MP3s before you transfer them, I've found several of them that have really crappy recording quality (some of my older rips). The sound is so clear on this device you can hear every little error in ripping/compressing. Definitely the main focus of an MP3 player is sound quality and the V:M does a flawless job.

Portability: 6 of 10
I would say the weight and the size of the V:M is on par with its other 30+ gig cousins such as the iPod. Truth be known I would like something more portable but I went mid-range portability because I wanted more space. I would have given the iPod of the same size category a similar score though. Nothing against the player itself, it is light and relatively small just not that great for working out.

Battery: 10 of 10
I've clocked mine at 14 hours of playtime (constant running). But by that time the battery completely dies. That's good life span for the battery. I don't play mine full blast though, mostly the opposite and I don't do video that often ether.

Ease of Use: 4 of 10
a.) Hardware Interface 4 of 10
The slider control is a bit of a tough thing to get used to at first but once you turn of the incessant clicking and adjust sensitivity it actually is just as intuitive as the iPod dial.

b.) Software 8 of 10
The only thing I have against the easy-to-use software included is that the whole software suite is just a bunch of separate programs. I'd like to see one software program instead of a jumble of utilities. Playlist creation and manipulation doesn't allow you to just add a directory, you have to actually choose the MP3 files themselves. That can get tedious if you're like me and you sort everything under its own folder. Other than that the software is good. The CD Ripping software is quite quick and efficient!

Overall: Worth the buy, I'd do it again. I may give a few of these out to my favorite relatives for Christmas.

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