MP3 Players Buying Guide

The MP3 is one of the biggest breakthroughs not just in the internet world but in the music world as well.

The MP3 is actually a file format, a way music file is stored in the computer. The MP3 is a compressed CD file format. Since CD files are big difficult to share around the internet, the MP3 takes care of the problem sharing.

MP3 has sound quality that nearly matches the CD sound quality. For example, if you have one song of, say, Jennifer Lopez that is 32 Megabytes, it could take you about an hour to download from the internet. If that is converted to MP3 format, file size can be reduced to 3 MB and downloading time will be reduced to a few minutes.

As MP3 players are reduced file formats, so are the MP3 players. In fact, more than 95 percent of all MP3 players are in handheld devices like cellular phones, iPods and specialized USB flash drives.

Three types of MP3 players are in the market today: MP3 flash players, hard drive players and integrated multimedia players. If you want to buy an MP3 player to day, you need which type suits your taste and budget.

Flash Memory MP3 Player

This type of MP3 player is perfect for people who are active and always on the go because this MP3 player does not have moving parts. They also come in very small packaging so they can fit inside your bag or packet while are jogging or doing you household chores like listening to you favorite music or audio books.

The only drawback to a Flash Memory MP3 player is the limited capacity. At present, the common capacity of Flash Memory MP3 players is from 2-5 gigabytes although this will surely increase in the not so distant future.

Hard Drive MP3 Player

This type of MP3 players stores the MP3 files inside a hard disk that is a miniature version of those found on your computers. Players of this kind in the market today can have up to 120 Gigabytes of capacity so you can have up to 20,000 tracks.

Hard Drive MP3 Players have a small screen display to help you navigate through your song files. There also connectors so that you can listen to your music on powerful speakers and even on home theater system.

If you are the type who is mobile and semi-active, like if you are an office worker who likes listening to music while working, this type of MP3 player is perfect for you.

Multimedia MP3 Players

As the name suggests, Multimedia MP3 Players play different kinds of media formats and not just MP3s. They can contain nice LCD color video display that is capable of playing your favorite MTV or movies. You can also store into the gadget many photos taken from your digital camera or video taken from your camcorder.

But you must note that these players don't come cheap. But then you are not just buying one player but a combination of many players. This gadget can even act as a personal digital assistant where there is software included like calendars and planners.

CD Players as MP3 Players

CD players may be a relatively old technology in the music world but they are very effective as MP3 players. You must know that an MP3 is just another format which can be stored in any digital medium like a CD as you would picture or document files. But not all CD players have MP3 playing capability so you need to examine closely.

The problem with CD players is that they are bulky and the minimum size of the player you can is a little bigger than the CD size.

Cellular Phones MP3 Players

Most cell phones nowadays are multimedia players as well as integrating the MP3 player, video player, and personal digital assistant in one small package. You need to buy a cellular phone with a high memory capacity so you can store plenty of music files on the go.

MP3 Players Memory sizes

The memory size of your MP3 player determines how many tracks you can fit into the player. Generally, a single Mp3 music file occupies an average of 3 MB so a 1GB MP3 Player can fit about 300 songs (1 GB equal to 1000 MB).

MP3 Players Compatible Formats

MP3, although the most popular, is not the only compressed audio format today. If you want to listen a wide array of music downloaded from different sources in the internet, you will want to consider buying an MP3 player that can also play other format like WMA (Microsoft proprietary format) and AAC (primarily used by Apple's iTunes).

MP3 Player Audio Recording

If you like to send voicemails on the internet or record the proceedings of your business meetings, you will want to buy and MP3 player that has a built in microphone for recording. After you record, an MP3 file is automatically created and stored in the player's memory.

MP3 Player Connectors

You can choose between two of the most common connectors today: Universal Serial Bus (USB) and Bluetooth Technology. USB allows you to insert you MP3 player on any USB ports on the computer so you can easily save or copy music files from the computer. Bluetooth can do the same function wirelessly.

MP3 Player Battery life

Different models of MP3 players use different types of batteries. Some are integrated into the unit non-interchangeable while use double A or triple A size disposable batteries. If you buy an MP3 player that uses external double or triple A sizes, you might want to buy an external charger so you won't keep disposing and go environment friendly. Commonly, battery life can last up to 40 hours depending on how continuously the MP3 player is playing. Multimedia players with colored video screen consume more battery power.

FM Radio Tuner

If you love listening to random music from the radio, make sure you buy an MP3 player that can function as an FM Radio tuner as well.

If you are confused of which MP3 Player to buy, read MP3 Player reviews at reliable review sites to make the right purchase.