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SanDisk Sansa Clip review | MP3 player functions

Published on: Monday, November 3rd 2008                   Written by: Martijn Kooijman - Photography by: Mark Peters

SanDisk MP3 player menu

E ven though the monitor has two colors, it keeps pace with the rest of the Sansa product line. With clear, animated icons and text, the following options are displayed on the screen; Music, Radio, Voice and settings. The navigation ring allows you to navigate through the menu which works very straightforward and intuitively. Especially those users that already have some experience when it comes to operating a Sansa MP3 player, will hardly need to spend time on learning how it all works, if any time at all. If you click down further than the main menu, a list appears with many options. The 'Music' menu offers a choice in sorting your music by genre, artist, album etc. The other menu options have almost identical structures and the functions of the buttons remain the same in every submenu.

SanDisk Sansa Clip review

 

SanDisk Sansa Clip music player

SanDisk Sansa Clip music player

Music quality and Equalizer

SanDisk announced that they would bring out a small MP3 player with fabulous music quality, and that is exactly what they have done with the Sansa Clip. The music quality pleasantly surprised me, and it did so every time upon activating the small Sansa Clip. The headphone that comes with this MP3 player seems to be cheap and rather bulky at first; however, this is only appearance, because as soon as you put them in your ears, you can forget all your negative thoughts. They fit perfectly in your ears and as soon as you turn on the Sansa Clip, you are caught in the Clip's world and you are treated to a sound of a uniquely high level. It is then that you really start appreciating the headphones. Not only do they deliver a clear sound, they also produce a full sound with a superb bass, which makes your forget you aren't using earplugs. And this is quite positive because using an earplug can be rather annoying, as it enters your ear quite deeply. However, with the earphone that comes with the SanDisk Sansa Clip, you don't suffer from it. Even with different earplugs, the sound remains equally excellent although there is no reason to purchase a different set of earplugs. And although the SanDisk Sansa Clip is fairly small in size, this MP3 player offers everything you'd expect from an MP3 player. An equalizer for example, among other things. This equalizer offers a number of preset settings such as: pop, rock, jazz, classic and an option to select your own settings for the equalizer. There are five slide bars that you can adjust one by one, and that is all the information displayed on the monitor. The SanDisk Sansa Clip supports the following formats: MP3, WMA, Secured WMA and Audible Audio files.

SanDisk Sansa MP3 player review

SanDisk Sansa MP3 player review

Radio and Voice recording functions

The radio function of the SanDisk Sansa Clip is displayed on the monitor with a search bar ranging from 87.5 to 108 FM. On top, the current frequency is displayed and a play/stop icon. The option button of the SanDisk Clip will offer you an array of radio options, among which one that will automatically search and store all the radio stations in the area. It is extremely easy to find and locate these files, listen to them and even to transfer them to your computer at a later time. Unfortunately, the sound goes downhill in radio mode; the clear tones and full music sound when listening to the MP3 player change to a muffled, empty and somewhat shrill sound. It is quite a shock when you switch from MP3 music to the radio. However, in general it’s still ok to listen to. The sound of the MP3 music spoils you compared to that of the radio mode. The Sansa Clip also features a voice recording function. It allows you to record voices or a song and listen to it afterwards. The voice recording cracks slightly and the recording volume is low, however, it is easy enough to record a voice memo with this function. I did not expect much from these additional functions, and since the device is extremely small and the sound is more than excellent, I find the fact that these functions do not perform excellently to be of only minor importance.

 

SanDisk Sansa Clip manual

SanDisk Sansa Clip manual

Music player settings

Although the small music player is perfect to listen to and the operation does not require changing a setting, these are still available. Display, language, FM settings, volume, system information, default settings, formatting, USB mode and an additional press and hold function are all at your disposal and are neatly developed and finished. There are more than enough languages, the monitor can be adjusted at will (clearness of the screen and the time before it goes to standby mode), drag and drop or automatic detection when you connect the MP3 player to a computer and all the rest goes without saying. Except for the press and hold function. This function allows you to choose from adding a song to your playlist or add a classification to the song by pressing the centre button a bit longer. As you can see, there is an abundance of options to adjust the Sansa Clip to your own preferences.

USB cable

USB cable

Battery and Memory

Uploading and transferring music is carried out through the included USB data cable, and requires a USB 2.0 High Power point to be available on your computer. Transferring is very fast and uploading usually takes no longer than 60 minutes. A fully charged battery lasts for approximately 15 hours, although this depends on the data rate of the music and the user's pattern. The 4GB internal flash memory of the Sansa Clip suffices to store approximately one thousand MP3 songs with an average length of 4 minutes or two thousand songs in WMA format. This is a large amount of songs, especially for on the road, and since there is no room wasted on video files or large firmware software, nearly the entire 4GB is at your disposal for music.

SanDisk software

SanDisk software

SanDisk music player accessories

You don't need software for the SanDisk Sansa Clip. The SanDisk Clip offers a drag 'n drop mode that allows you to put your music on the MP3 player, directly from your pc. If however, you find it easier to transfer music through a synchronization program, that is also possible, because the Sansa Clip also happens to offer this transfer mode. There is no software included. The items you will find in the package are: a USB 2.0 data cable, headphones, 'quick start' guide and a CD-ROM with the PDF version of the 'quick start' guide. The latter seems superfluous to me, however, there must be people who prefer to read the manual from a PDF version than in a small, unhandy booklet. The SanDisk Sansa Clip functions perfectly on its own; therefore you don't really need any additional accessories than those that are standard included.

 
 
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