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A Quick Guide to Choosing Your New MP3 Player

Jun 4, 2008
Having an mp3 player is just as important these days as a Walkman was in the 1980s. Thanks to digital music downloads, an mp3 player is essential if you want to take your music with you on the go.

Choosing the right mp3 player may seem like a daunting task, but if you follow these simple steps you'll be able to find the right player for you.

The first thing you need to decide before you start shopping is exactly what your needs are for your mp3 player.

* Are you going to be using your mp3 player while you exercise?

* Does it need to hold your entire digital music catalog?

* Does it need to be waterproof or have another type of special feature?

* Do you need to have additional features, such as a phone or Internet access with your mp3s?

* Will you be listening to audiobooks on your mp3 player?

Deciding on the answer to these questions before you go shopping is essential to not getting overwhelmed. There are a lot of choices out there when it comes to mp3 players, and the more you know about what you want before you get started, the better off you'll be.

The other step to take before you shop is to set your budget. Decide what you can comfortably afford so you won't be tempted to overspend once you start shopping. Mp3 players can range from under $100 to several hundred dollars depending on the model you get and the features that want. You'll typically pay more for brand name mp3 players, as well as for more storage.

Your first determination will be the storage space that you need on the mp3 player. Lower end mp3 players only have a few megabytes (MB) of storage. If you want to store most of your music on your mp3 player, you'll need several gigabytes (GB) of storage. It's a good measure to buy as much storage as you can afford. Most first time mp3 player buyers upgrade later on to devices with larger storage. Start out with was as much as you can so you won't have to upgrade too soon.

Visit a local electronics store and try out models. It's important that you try out the functionality and feel of your potential mp3 players. You want the device to feel good in your hands, as well as to have intuitive controls. Some cheaper model mp3 players have controls that don't make a whole lot of sense, so trying them out in person is an extra measure of safety.

Make sure to pay attention to important features, such as how you transfer songs to your device as well as the battery life. USB and Firewire connections offer the fastest transfer rates. You also want to find something that is able to play without recharge for an extended period of time. There's no point in buying a device that you can't use on the go.

Another feature to check out in person is the sound quality. Keep in mind that better headphones will improve the sound quality, but the audio output of the device is important too. Pick something that sounds good even with the standard headphones and you'll know that you have a good device on your hands.

And if you know you will want to download audiobooks, as well as listen to music, make sure that your mp3 player is compatible with the audiobook files, which are often a specialized file type that not all mp3 players can read. Check with the website where you download your audiobooks to make sure.
About the Author
Jamie Jefferson writes for Momscape.com and Susies-Coupons.com, where you'll find coupons for audiobook downloads as well as today's coupons and price drops on mp3 players.
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