Conclusion: Armed with wireless streaming features, but hindered by an irksome user interface, the affordable ZEN X-Fi is a solid player, but lacks the graceful navigation of devices from Apple or Samsung.
Pros: Streams and downloads music wirelessly. FM Radio and voice recorder. Quality earphones are included.
Cons: User interface needs work. Most videos need to be converted with the included software. Loaded with buttons.
Creative ZEN X-Fi Portable Media Player with Wireless LAN Review
18 October 2008
Conclusion: In a world of portable media player leaders and followers, kudos to Creative for going their own way. The design and feature set are uniquely theirs, with improvements over the first generation and an attractive value for those looking to go beyond the ordinary. Where to Buy: Manufacturer's Specifications What's in the Box?
Pros: Head-turningly compact but, Proprietary audio tweaks make it sound BIG, Works great with established content providers and Digital Copy, Highly customizable
Cons: Video streaming requires resizing of our existing video files, No video output, Comes with the shortest USB cable I've ever seen!
Excerpt: Creative has been hawking its X-Fi sound enhancement technology hard in the last couple of years, putting it in everything from sound cards to headphones — and now in a portable AV player. Aside from the usual voice recorder, FM radio, expandable storage, and audio/video playback, the Zen X-Fi is the first player from Creative to offer built-in WiFi.
Pros: Very good sound quality; included ear buds are excellent; attractive interface
Cons: Buttons are small and are not backlit; lacks wireless sync and web browsing
Summary: Creative is marketing its new Zen X-Fi digital media player as "the sound of perfection," which unfortunately is a bit of an overstatement. It is the company's best-sounding player to date and it does sound undeniably great, but really only when X-Fi, its most lauded feature, is disabled. Most of the other features unique to the Zen X-Fi are gimmicky at best, and the new controls do nothing but clutter an otherwise attractive player.
Conclusion: Compared to the Zen, the build quality is improved, upgraded headphones are included, and the wireless feature works pretty well even though it really puts a drain on your battery. But that is as far as I will go as calling the new features improvements. X-Fi sound enhancement is not an improvement. Chat and Friends list is not an improvement and has hindered the button UI. These features are just flat-out poorly implemented.
Pros: Upgraded headphones included, Very good build quality, Good sound quality, Wireless Setup and Streaming is Easy
Cons: Weak FM Radio, Poor SD implementation, Chat is poorly implemented, Text input, Poor top down viewing angle, Emulated X-Fi
Summary: The Creative ZEN X-Fi continues the tradition of past ZEN players, offering a compelling alternative to the iPod range. However, Wi-Fi and the X-Fi modes are poorly implemented and don't bring much to the table.
Pros: Stylish design, wide array of formats supported, lots of features, large storage capacity
Cons: Wireless connectivity of limited usefulness, keypad makes it difficult to type, X-Fi modes not worth using, SD card slot poorly implemented