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Topic: MP3 Question
Message: Posted by: Leland Stone (Jan 9, 2008 10:27AM)
Okay, so I'm working at upgrading my technical skills to better manipulate sound for my shows. I got the Audacity program for recording & mixing, and I'm ready to buy an IPOD to replace my current MP3 player. However -

I've been using this gizmo for a while (mainly for biking) and I wonder if I'm going to have the same trouble with a new device? I use RealPlayer to upload music to a Sansa 1gb player, and it takes FOREVER. One track takes >4 minutes to upload, most of the album info simply doesn't transfer, playlists - fuggetaboutit - and the songs are arrayed randomly on the device.

I'm using a Dell running Windows XP, and NOTHING else I do on this machine takes so long. Is the bottleneck the MP3 player itself? I thought Sansa was an okay device - and for $50 at BestBuy I thought I was getting usable hardware.

Thanks for the input, guys!
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Jan 9, 2008 11:19AM)
And Ipod+ITunes combo should cause you no trouble. Playlists will be a key feature as you can have a different playlist for each type of show you do.
Message: Posted by: Skip Way (Jan 9, 2008 12:19PM)
Leland, my wife confiscated my iPod Nano for a trip so I bought a Sansa Express for my gym workouts with its FM option to hook into the gym's TV/Music system). The Sansa definitely loads much slower than the iPod. I've never actually timed it. I usually set it up then find something else to do. The iPod zips through downloads.

I need to buy my wife her own iPod so I can get my Nano back for upcoming shows. Marriage! Go figger! :)
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jan 9, 2008 12:50PM)
Sounds like the Sansa has a slow USB connection. That's what happens with some inexpensive hardware, they cut corners and you get fewer features.
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jan 9, 2008 07:22PM)
I bought a Sansa e250 (2 gig) some time back and the instructions suggested using Windows Media Player. It took a while to figure out what the instructions were trying to say (and what they didn't say), but eventually I got the hang of it. It loads much faster than what you're describing (a whole DVD rips in just a couple of minutes), although probably not as fast as an iPod. You can do playlists and such, but apparently the album info doesn't transfer, so you have to enter it yourself. However, there's a copy-and-paste feature and a few other shortcuts that I guess are supposed to be intuitive (if you happen to be a teenager).

The thing does videos pretty well, and I also have a few podcasts on it. The one thing I've noticed is the huge difference in after-market stuff (speakers and such) between Sansa and Apple. There's some stuff for Sansa, but lots more for the iPod.
Message: Posted by: ScottRSullivan (Jan 9, 2008 11:12PM)
Hmm. Just a thought. If you are already planning on upgrading to an iPod, why waste time entering in all the metadata on your Sansa manually?

I think this is why iPod has the market share. It is easy, fast and they think of the little things, like copying all the metadata (including cover art, for example).

And, as Frank mentions, organizing is a piece of cake. You can make as many playlists as you like. You can even make playlists on the fly FROM your iPod with the music currently on it. Or you can organize your music by artist, album, song, newly added, the list goes on, literally!

Also, my understanding is Real is basically an end-of-life product. Their RealPlayer was nice for awhile. I liked it much better than Windows Media Player (which I hated). But iTunes handles stuff so much better.

Good luck with your new system!

Message: Posted by: Donald Dunphy (Jan 10, 2008 08:48PM)
Allow me to play the fool, and ask a silly question. It may show how computer illiterate I am. :)

I don't have an iPod, but I do have a RCA Lyra MP3 Player. I'm also running XP on my desktop. Older computer, only USB 1.0 ports, so not even high speed transfer. Small ram, small hard drive.

To put music on my player, I connect it via the USB port. It opens up as a new drive. I take files or albums from the My Music folder, and copy them to the RCA folder (find it through My Computer, sometimes appears as your E: drive or whatever). I can re-organize a bit within the RCA folder, as necessary. When it is done, I simply close the connection by clicking the appropriate icon (and following close prompts), and then disconnect.

I never open Windows Media or iTunes to do any copying. Are you saying that you do that, or have to do that, with your player?

Can't you just copy and paste (or drag and drop) from your My Music folder? Could the fact you are using a program to do the transfer, be what is causing you this problem?

- Donald
Message: Posted by: Leland Stone (Jan 11, 2008 10:46AM)
Hey, Guys -

Thanks so much for taking time to help out!

Scott: Once I get the Ipod, I plan to keep using the Sansa product on the bike trail, even though it's a bear to load. Maybe this plan will change after purchase, but still...I figure risking the old player will make more sense than riding with the Ipod (especially the way I ride :) )

Donald: Hm. The Sansa just sits there when I plug it in. For transfers, I have to use RealPlayer or Windows Media Player, and the cut-and-paste function is dicey at best. Once in a while, the system will just freeze and I have to reboot.

I'm guessing that the Sansa product is just a clunker. Curse this 6 month old technology!
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Jan 11, 2008 01:03PM)
Donald: Many MP3 players are set up the way you describe, but not all.

Leland: I think you just got an inexpensive player.

Message: Posted by: Mystical Matthew (Jan 11, 2008 04:29PM)
I know it's a pain, but I would check to see if the device is USB 2.0 compatible. I would also check to make sure your computer has USB 2.0 ports.

Do you get a message that pops up when you plug it in saying "This Device Can Run Faster"? If so you probably need to see if your computer has any USB 2.0 ports.

The 4th Generation iPods and before all could work with Firewire, which was NICE. I truly miss that feature. Firewire transfers were LIGHTNING QUICK! To my knowledge anything 5th gen or later only supports USB.

When I got my 5th generation iPod I had to install a PCI card on my computer to get USB 2.0 (Weird I know... I had firewire but no USB 2.0... Gotta love Gateway). This worked perfectly. If you can confirm that your computer only has USB 1.1 ports, this would do WONDERS to speed up your transfers.


Truthfully... My long term advice is "Just buy an iPod". I know that seems lazy, but it's truly the most user friendly player out there. My second choice would be a Zune, but not as much is compatible with it.
Message: Posted by: George Ledo (Jan 15, 2008 07:30PM)
On 2008-01-10 21:48, Donald Dunphy wrote:
To put music on my player, I connect it via the USB port. It opens up as a new drive. I take files or albums from the My Music folder, and copy them to the RCA folder (find it through My Computer, sometimes appears as your E: drive or whatever). I can re-organize a bit within the RCA folder, as necessary. When it is done, I simply close the connection by clicking the appropriate icon (and following close prompts), and then disconnect.
Hmmmmm... That's an option on my Sansa. You can do it either this way or through Media Player, but you need to choose which way you want and select it from the Settings menu in the player itself.
Message: Posted by: Leland Stone (Feb 5, 2008 09:07AM)
NOW I get it.

Actually, I got it. After being inundated with media hype, marketing stressing their uber-coolness, and rarely seeing a teenager without little white buds jammed in their ears, I broke down and bought an Ipod Nano.

And...NOW I get it.


P.S. If the MAC is to computers as the Ipod is to MP3 players, I'm gettin' a Mac next time :)
Message: Posted by: ScottRSullivan (Feb 5, 2008 09:44AM)
Welcome to the club. You've seen the light.


You have no idea how much your Mac:computers::iPod:mp3player analogy is spot on. Congratulations.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Haas (Feb 5, 2008 05:03PM)
Actually, you just got an inexpensive MP3 player. If you'd bought a different one by Creative or Sony or one of a few other brands, you wouldn't have had that problem. The current Nano costs at least $149.00, so it's got better hardware and user interface than a $50.00 one.

Now you've been sucked into the great whirling vortex of Apple hype. Soon you'll be acting and dressing and thinking like all the other "rebels."
Message: Posted by: ScottRSullivan (Feb 5, 2008 05:33PM)
I've got my black mock turtleneck and blue jeans!

Tongue firmly planted in cheek!