published on in Geekyness

one brand new another squeaky clean

I’ve had a good run with my Zune MP3 player, excellent in fact, and I would highly recommend that player to anyone who was looking for an iTunes alternative. Truthfully, I’d recommend one no matter what, but it is impossible to beat the ubiquitous nature of iTunes and the iPod, like it or not. I’ve had mine for over 2 years, and I only one had a problem where it locked up. For a Microsoft device, it is the most un-Microsoft like product out there. It was incredibly clean, stable (2+ years of constant running and only one lock up, most servers struggle for that kind of uptime), and the Zune software itself was probably the best media manager I’ve ever used. I can’t say enough pleasant things about the product, it really is well made. Here is a shot of the main interface:

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Main View of my Collection

Here is a shot of my profile:

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Some playback information

BTW, I’ve received a “Silver” Badge for Pink Floyd, Buckethead and Smog. That means I’ve listened to their music at least 1000 times…

So, Sunday morning, when I asked Michele if she had seen my MP3 player, I almost leaked out a few tears when she opened up the Washing machine lid after the load was done and fished out my poor little 8GB Zune Player. There it was, a sad little thing, I felt like I found the family cat under the house or something. It was cold, a little damp, and completely devoid of life. There was a glimmer of hope, because I still kept the Extended Warranty papers… and it was for two years, which expired on 05/26/2010. The timing of this event was pretty comical.

Faced with a crisis of having to listen to the dreaded morning radio, I came up with two options. One, was to use what I had left in Best Buy gift cards (about $50), and get a new Zune HD (~$179). The Second option was to join my geek friends and get a smart phone.

I talked with my friend Steve for a bit, primarily to ask how well an Android based phone would perform as a MP3 player and Podcast manager. He said that syncing music is probably more laborious compared to what I was used to, but he said managing podcast’s with Google Reader is where it really shines. He mentioned that he will play podcasts at work in his desktop, and then continue it on his phone as if it were the same device.

In the end, I went with the phone, the Droid. I’m a bit sad about giving up my Zune, and I even softly whistled “Taps” as I put it back in its original box. However, I would like to take a little more advantage of what a “Smart Phone” can offer, and consolidate two devices into one. I guess it can make phone calls too, but I doubt I’ll do that very often.