Looking for a lightweight, simple MP3 player with a long lasting battery
June 2, 2015 4:49 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a super lightweight MP3 player (and FM radio maybe?) with a long battery life to take on a long distance camping/hiking/cycling trip.

Here are my demands:

- Not interested in fancy screens or video playback
- Must not need extra cables or external proprietary chargers
- Drag and drop via USB with any computer (so no iTunes and Apple products)
- Decent storage capacity (8GB+?) but not looking for a hard drive based product
- Must be small, lightweight, something you can just throw in your pocket

A few years ago I had a Samsung YP-U3 MP3 player and absolutely loved it. I'd use it while commuting and only charge it every week or so. It was only two or three inches long, the size of a USB flash drive, it charged in the blink of an eye and was basically the bee's knees. I can't find one to buy online anymore, so maybe there's a similar but better product out there?
posted by UltraFleece to Technology (9 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I like my 8 Gig Sansa Clip+ a lot. Fits all your requirements, I think. Recharges via USB.

Works great out of the box but I like to fiddle with my stuff so I replaced the firmware with Rockbox (the current Rockbox build for the Clip+ is stable). Definitely worth it, though the original firmware is just fine. Very good sound.

I just added a 64 gig microSD memory card so now I can listen to an 8,000-track shuffle, just like I always wanted.

The clip is robust, and the whole thing is quite small and convenient. I replaced the earbuds that came with it, but I think one must pretty much expect to do that with any mp3 player anymore. I got Sony XBA-1's for half price on Amazon, I'm very happy with them.

My Clip+ was a gift from my brother, I think he bought a few for super cheap on some kind of slickdeal a few years ago. I am super happy with it.

If I lost it, I'd buy another.
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 5:29 AM on June 2, 2015 [9 favorites]

seconding anything in the sansa clip line. Small, simple, and rock solid.
posted by cosmicbandito at 5:32 AM on June 2, 2015

Thirding the SansaClip. Had one a few years ago. It's teeny, the battery lasts forever, it's bombproof, it's fantastic.
posted by julthumbscrew at 5:35 AM on June 2, 2015

I have an older model Sansa Clip and it is definitely not water resistant. You may want to look for something a bit more durable if you're taking it outside and on strenuous activities.
posted by Anonymous at 5:49 AM on June 2, 2015

I have been looking for this lately, too, and the Sansa MP3 players are recommended for this all over.

If you want to, you can flash their firmware with Rockbox to teach it new tricks -- but as is, it's a pretty well-regarded device.
posted by wenestvedt at 6:21 AM on June 2, 2015

In case the Clip doesn't work for you, I'd like to recommend the Sony NWZE385 16 GB Walkman MP3 Video Player. I'm not taking it hiking or anything, but I use mine 40+ hours a week, the screen is scratched to hell, but all the buttons work and I've never had any issues with it. I've been using it over a year and my previous two MP3 players died within six months of purchase. I used to have a Sansa MP3 player before this one and I loved it, but the quality has gone downhill imo since my original Sansa, which actually had a metal back. The Sony Walkman is plastic but durable, I don't feel worried about throwing it in my bag and going. It charges with a mini USB and has a drag and drop interface. You can do video and radio but I only use mine for MP3s.
posted by possibilityleft at 6:23 AM on June 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

I like the look of the new Sansa Clips a lot, I'd get one except the Sansa Clip that I got in 2008 is still working great. To be fair part of the clip broke after three or four years, but it's so tiny I just chuck it in a pocket.
posted by yeahlikethat at 6:41 AM on June 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Yeah like everyone else I love my Sansa Clip. I've used it daily for years and years, I regularly get 10-15 hours of use out of it between charges, its' easy to get music and audiobooks onto it. It takes micro SD cards so you can easily expand the storage. I have a bright pink silicone cover on mine. It's tiny so it's easy for me to lose track of, but I can always see the bright pink from across the room.
posted by RustyBrooks at 7:52 AM on June 2, 2015

Another Sandisk Clip+ / Clip Zip vote. Stay away from the newer Clip Sport, though.
posted by Bangaioh at 1:15 PM on June 2, 2015

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