8000 song limit on Clip+


Given the release of the new 32GB micro SD from sandisk, I decided to replace my ageing 40GB hard disk player with a Sansa Clip+ with the card add-in.  Before I purchased, I wanted to check that the device would be compatible with the card - that there were no limitations on the number of songs.  So I emailed Sandisk tech support and was assured that there was no limit.

I bought my device and card (£140 in total) and after loading my device, it soon became apparent that not all the songs were available.  I emailed tech support again, and it now appears that there is an 8000 song limit.  This was not mentioned on the website, in the manual, or by the tech support agent when I SPECIFICALLY asked him this question before.

Is there any resolution to this?  I am now outside the retailer’s returns window.  Should Sandisk foot the bill?

Also, it takes almost 20 minutes to “refresh my media” after every time I recharge.  This is not an acceptable level of quality for a consumer product.


The limits are mentioned on the site, but I cannot blame you for asking the support. I cannot imagine what a stupid idiot the support person must be not to know such a simple info and misleading you that bad!

Unfortunately, there is no resolution I could see with the official firmware. I’ve publicly asked Sandisk to increase the limit when the cards were about to get available, but no reaction so far. The thing is it’s not just about tweaking a number, a bigger db requires more storage, cpu etc, so it seems they are trying to delay it until 32Gb will be widely used.

The long refresh time complains also were posted here by myself and many others, no results or feedback so far.

What you can do is to switch to Rockbox instead of the oficial firmware. It has other benefits as well, but requires some aditional learning. The refresh still will be there, but you could force-reset to Rockbox to skip it.

There is also a solution only if you are mainly using audiobooks, ambient or other type of content that it is ok to join. I’ve merged all my audiobooks with Mp3Merger (Win, free) on a 1 file per book basis. It joins the frames without transcoding or quality loss, and Clip plays huge files (the biggest I have is 870 mb) without problems. The refresh time is also very fast because of this.

8,000 songs is an approximation of the limit. The real limit is in the size of the database file, which means more songs will show up on the player it you keep filenames, tags and folder names as small as possible, and don’t excessively nest files. I guess the issue is that the full databse file needs to fit in the player’s ram memory so that the player will be reasonably responsive. The maximum database file size might not be capable of being expanded without having more physical ram in the player. When the Clip, clip+, and Fuze were originally designed, I doubt that the designers thought about having these players access 40 GB of flash memory.

Regardless of the technical reasons, the fact is the functionality is lacking.  I work in technology and I would never fob off a customer with technical excuses for a functional issue.  Sandisk should be ashamed.

Nevertheless, I have taken notgod’s suggestion and installed Rockbox.  It resolves the issue and works a dream - no issues as of yet.  I am still angry that I have to resort to unsupported methods to get the promised capability from my purchase, but luckily I am a techie and can handle these things.  Thanks for the tip.

Still doesn’t resolve the issue of re-building the song list after every time I plug in.  I think it is because the Rockbox for Sansa firmware still resorts to the original Sandisk firmware when conencting via USB - it’s a WiP apparently.

Thanks again for the tip.

griff99 wrote:

I am still angry that I have to resort to unsupported methods to get the promised capability from my purchase, but luckily I am a techie and can handle these things.



Don’t be angry; be thankful for the talented and dedicated ‘techies’ who designed and built Rockbox (in their spare time, i might add).


Otherwise, you’d have to look for a completely different player. Every electronic device (and mechanical for that matter) has limitations. These ‘shortcomings’ are not always disclosed beforehand; many you discover after you purchase the unit. If this case, you either have to decide you can live with it as-is (or work around it), or return it as it doesn’t fit your needs.

To print out a list of what a particular ‘whatchimacallit’ doesn’t do would take 10 times the space of what it does do. Besides, this particular limitation may not affect the majority of users. In this case, SanDisk has no way of knowing who it might or might not impact. Having said that however, it is reasonable to expect that their next generation of players designed around the upcoming SDXC format would be more generous in many regards and have fewer ‘limitations’.

Ironically, I feel SanDisk is a victim of their own success.  As the Sansas have been developed, larger capacity microSD cards have become available almost as fast as firmware updates.  The capacity increase hasn’t been linear, it’s been logarithmic, doubling many times.

As the players’ OS is tag-based, which makes sense for a media device with Janus / WMDRM-PD capabilities.  Who would have envisioned a little domino sized machine with 40GB of flash memory three years ago?  To make matters more critical, the price of those 32GB cards will inevitably level off, making them more available to many users.

I’m hoping for a simple remedy in the method the Sansa uses in cataloguing the tracks on the device.  This will speed up the database refresh (parsing) process is well.  It is quite possible, comparing the e200 version 2, frozen in time with an earlier firmware revision, yet running an (almost) identical SOC.  The Clip+ / Fuze rev. 2 have integrated SDRAM.

It’s a wonderful thing, having regular firmware revisions to catch up with advances in capability.

Bob  :smileyvery-happy:

An 8,000 song limit would not be an issue for me with a 32GB card. With an 8GB Clip+ and 16GB card, I’ve barely broken the 3,700 song barrier.:wink:

Tapeworm - Don’t get me wrong, I’m very grateful to the techies who put rockbox together and if it holds out over the next few weeks I will be donating with a big smile :slight_smile:

The problem is, a lot of these limitations do not become clear until after some use, when most retailers’ return periods have ended.  I’m still angry that I was misled in advance by a Sandisk operative.

I think a limitation in song quantity is a fairly major point to highlight…