Darxus

[toys] What portable media player should I get?

[toys] What portable media player should I get?

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2009-09-29
Requirements:
  • Ogg Vorbis support.
  • Linux support, probably by being a standard USB mass storage device, including firmware upgrades.
  • Useful for playlist pruning
I've never owned one. Except for the ipod work gave me which is useless due to inability to play vorbis, and phones with insignificant storage.

I'm thinking about 8gb.

I care a lot about being able to easily delete a song from my playlist while driving.

It would also be nice to have a scan mode like my car radio - play only a random 3 seconds of each song, for playlist building from a random pile of music. But I don't know of any player that does that yet.

FLAC support would be cool, but I don't know that I would ever want to use it on a portable player.

I'm not interested in FM radio and removable media slots. I'm not confident I care about having a display at all.

List of Vorbis players.
  • Actually, my Android phone (with an 8GB micro-SDHC card) fits your specs pretty well. :-)

    (The default media player falls down on playlist-editing support, but I'm sure there are lots of third-party ones, too. One significant drawback is that it doesn't have a standard 3.5mm headset jack, and as of Android 1.5, support for adapter dongles is flaky.)

    I have an old Linux-based Archos PMP (with ~30GB hard drive) which (after I added an Ogg Vorbis codec, tracking down which was a bit of a hassle) significantly exceeds your specs, but the model I have is no longer made and I have no idea whether their current line would make you happy. They floated back and forth between Linux and WinCE from model line to model line; I don't know what they're doing now. One nice thing about that was that it had USB device and USB host ports, so you could plug in a keyboard or an external hard drive. It didn't have any networking out of the box, but I think people got WiFi dongles working with it.
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