Monday, October 6, 2008

The perfect stocking stuffer for mom!

I thought no better way to get the holiday gift ideas started that to come up with something really great to give to moms! I've been a bit slow to jump on the mp3 player bus, which is ironic as Connor has had his own mp3 player for months now though its not a smaller player. I am usually one of the first to jump on any new technology or gadget so I honestly cannot explain my hesitation to buy my first mp3 player but a good reason why I've waited is that up till recently they were just awfully expensive.

I'm really incredibly excited that my very first mp3 of my own will be the Sansa Fuze. The first most attractive feature about the Fuze is how incredibly affordable it is, I've done a bit of pricing on it and you can usually pick up cheapest model, 4gigs, for around $80-90 and upwards of $120 for an 8gig model which if you pay attention sometimes you can pick up the basic silver 8gig for as cheap as the 4gig.

Visually the first thing I noticed is how much the Fuze really resembles the Ipod Nano, its closest competitor, and size wise they are very similar.. the Fuze may actually be a bit smaller but it does seem a bit heavier than what I remember from my very brief encounters with a Nano but either way its tiny weighing in at 2.1 ounces and offers a 1.9" lcd display which is virtually half of the Fuze's body. The menus and spin dial are incredibly easy to use and I love the home button which brings you back to the main menu.

The Sansa Fuze supports basically any sort of sound file you can throw at it from MP3s to WMAs and even audiobooks and podcasts. Though I'm sure there are some formats it wont support I've not found that its even baulked at anything in my collection. It will also play videos, store and allow you to view your photo collection, and will even play a slide show for you. Its video playback abilities are actually quite impressive mind you it is a tiny screen and if your dead set on watching movies on it I might recommend you move up to a larger mp3 player but I absolutely love it to store Connor's home movies and its nice to know I can store a movie on it for road trips as Connor usually hogs my portable dvd player.

The really unusual aspect of the Fuze is its extra features! The Fuze offers built in FM radio capabilities, voice recording with a built in microphone, and its memory is expandable via a microSD card. Ironically I've been writing most of my reviews this week from bed while Connor sleeps as its been a rough week for my little man and he hasn't been that cooperative as far as letting me have any time to write and the last thing I want is to wake him up. So I've been logging my mommy time via my Fuze and my secret addiction to National Public Radio. Though seeing as the Fuze does not have an antenna I can't seem to pick up as many channels as I would with my car radio it does give me more freedom to branch out from just my music collection and usually I only get to catch up with NPR in the car its great to be able to listen while Connor snoozes. Though I haven't tried the microSD card expansion slot on my Fuze its nice to know if I need more memory I can expand my options which is a real rarity with mp3 players. You could easily double your memory storage with the addition of a memory card!

Really the only disappointment for me about the Fuze is the earphones that are included. They are rather uncomfortable hard ear bubs, I'm definitely going to have a new pair of earphones on my Christmas wish list. That's a really easy and cheap fix though!

The Sansa Fuze is available for purchase in five colors directly from Sansa!


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