Almost as if it was a belated birthday present from Microsoft, the Zune I won a few weeks ago finally showed up yesterday. Benoc covers the public perception, which generally led me to believe that this wasn’t going be a prize I particularly valued. But you know what…
It doesn’t suck.
I don’t have a video iPod to compare it to — just a nano. But given that, the Zune is immediately more scratch resistant and durable than my nano. I stress the scratch resistant part because I had to go out and spend $25 on a durable case for the nano so that the display wouldn’t become unreadable. On the other hand, I don’t plan on spending any extra money on the Zune. (Well, actually it was free — I don’t plan on spending any money on it at all.)
There’s no scroll wheel, but the controls are pretty intuitive nonetheless. In fact, I like the non-click wheel better for adjusting volume. And for all the reports that it’s “bulky” — seriously, people, there’s a limit at which things become so small that it doesn’t matter. And because I’ve been watching video on the Zune, I’m not sure I’d want it to be too much smaller. I like to see what I’m watching. (Of course, it only supports a limited number of video formats not including divx or xvid, which means I’ve been using Usman’s Beauty and the Geek audition as the demonstration video for everyone who asks. Then again, his tie bit is pretty priceless.)
Oh but wait… there is another shoe to drop. The physical Zune itself doesn’t suck when loaded up with my stuff and not attached to the computer. The software on the other hand… yeah that freezes up a lot if I try to import too many videos. And occassionally it will hang if I decide to edit an album image and I’ll have to restart the program. Plus everytime I start it, it wants me to log into the “Marketplace,” which I have no intention of ever using. iTunes doesn’t ask me log into the iTunes store every time I open it. On the other hand, once a song is on my iPod, if I happen to delete it from my computer because I run out of harddrive space or whatever, I can’t get it back from the iPod easily, which is not true with the Zune. (Yes, yes, I know there are cracks out and there and I could do it… but I am lazy.)
Overall, for a prize, I am more than pleased and willing to put up with crappy software to be able to use it. It was definitely worth my 12 hours of puzzling.


2 responses

  1. On my Zune. 🙂
    He sent it to me once a long time ago and it’s been on my computer ever since. I think it was somewhere in his /www directory. You might go poking around athena to see if its still there. Or, you know, ask him.
    Otherwise, if you wait a little over a month, I can show it to you.