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SanDisk’s Sansa Fuze: Review

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Not long after posting the details of SanDisk’s newest MP3 player, the Sansa Fuze, did reviews start hitting the net. SanDisk has positioned the ‘Fuze’ as an Apple iPod Nano (third gen) competitor. Unfortunately, for the most part, the ‘Fuze’ falls flat in the video support category and doesn’t have the audio prowess of other MP3 players. However, to its credit, SanDisk has attached attractive price tags to the ‘Fuze’: $79.99, $99.99, $129.99 for the 2, 4, and 8GB model.

Continue reading the review after the jump.

Specs:
* 1.9? color screen
* 0.3? thick
* microSD card slot
* music player: MP3, WAV, Audible (for audio books) and Windows Media Audio (WMA)
* video player: MPEG-4
* photos viewer: JPEG
* FM radio
* audiobook support
* voice recording and built-in microphone
* Capacities: 2, 4, and 8GB
* Colors: pink, red, blue, black, and silver
* Battery life: 24 hours for audio; Five hours for video

Good:
+ High quality feel. Solid construction; nice weighty feel.
+ Main menu is nice. Very easy to navigate.
+ microSD card slot is nice.
+ FM radio

Bad:
– Uses a proprietary dock connection. Why not stick to mini USB?
– Can’t customize background. Inner menus are dull to look at.
– The screen’s protective coating makes the display look dark and grainy.
– Video support is horrible: supports only MPEG4
– Included earbuds distort sound at high volume

All in all, the SanDisk Sansa Fuze is a decent audio player. It won’t please the hard-core audiophiles, but the relatively cheap price (than Apple’s iPod) and battery life might just make it worth considering. Just be sure to upgrade the earphones.

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