The Cheapest MP3 Player Ever: A Review

The story begins with my brother and his friend. In one of their shenanigans, they decided to go to this crooked “Pay Us So We Can Make You a Website” seminar to get a free dinner and a free MP3 player. Needless to say, the dinner sucked, and what they got looked like the cheapest MP3 player ever. Needless to say, none of us took it seriously, but hey, it was free too. While it’s probable that it sucks even worst than their meal (which they skipped out on), I might as well prove it as scientifically as possible.

Background Information

Simply put, there is none. The box it comes in is a bland white box, only comes with a single note of how to use the buttons. No manufacturer at all; the closest evidence we have of one is the drive title when I insert it into my computer “AMT_MP3”. I doubt that helps anyone.

Aesthetics

Simple, dollar store style

Simple, dollar store style

Yeah, it’s pretty ugly. You can see that it tries to be an iPod Shuffle from a few generations back. Unlike the Shuffle, it feels about as sturdy as a water bottle. The on/off switch takes a lot to actually push it into the on position, and it feels like  you’re going to break it every time you do so. I was never serious about being able to crush a Shuffle in the palm of my hand, but this, I’m willing to bet I could.

Storage & Software

Now, the packaging didn’t even say how much space it had on the player. And considering how many elderly people were apparently at this “conference”, I doubt many of them would be able to find out. Anywho, I figured out it’s only 256 MB, which is just enough for 2-3 albums of mine. Oddly, on the player itself, it comes two songs (with foreign names) with software. And it creates it’s own CD drive to play them on it, which kind of scares me. Still, I kept it in my computer, just so I could put a bearable song on it.

Headphones

The look says iPod to anyone who shops for less than 50¢ per item

The look says iPod to anyone who shops for less than 50¢ per item

Yeah, I didn’t mention it came with headphones. But they’re cheap. And I’m not using them in this test, because I’m pretty sure they’ll blow out in one ear as soon as sound goes through those wires.

Sound Quality

The poor song I’d victimize to enter this MP3 player would be Porcupine Tree’s “Octane Twisted”. A good song for this test, has a good vocal low, and a loud bassy high. Really good live, now let’s hear it on this abomination. And at first, I was surprised. Sure, I was using Sony DJ headphones, which probably cost 3 times as much as the player, but it was crisp. But that was only a low acoustic guitar, and that’s easy to sound good. Then came in the vocals. I cringed as Steven Wilson’s crisp, beautiful vocals became jagged and distorted. This was more of what I expected. Then the loud came in. I suggest, if you ever run into this MP3 player, don’t put any song that involves cymbals on it, unless you like the sound of a scratching chalk board, that is. Basically, it was harmful, more brutal than a black metal concert, and I was developing a headache afterwards.

Battery Life

I’m not listening to this thing more than five minutes to find out.

Price

Well, as there was a problem with not knowing the manufacturer, this thing doesn’t have a price. According to eBay, you can get 256 MB MP3 players as low as a dollar. But it’s probably not worth that much anyways, since you can make your own MP3 player. Sure, they won’t be cheaper, but they’ll look cooler.

Verdict

You couldn’t pay me to use this monstrosity. It is far worse than the 128 MB RCA Lyra that I got for Christmas seven years ago. And at least that had expandable SD memory.  If you get your hands on this, please, fill it with thermite, and make an amusing YouTube video out of it, because that’s the only fun you’ll get out of it.

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~ by The Slurpee Man on October 19, 2009.

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