Very interested in the sansa clip

I am very interested in the sansa clip.  I am thinking in getting on in a couple months.  I was wanting to know if it is very difficult to put the c.d.'s you buy in the store on them? Does it cost anything to listen to the radio if it comes with one? I also would like to know if it is easy to put your c.d.'s on them or hard?  Does it come with exact instructions? 

Please let me know

Thanks in advance

The instructions that come with the Clip aren’t very thorough- but the device is so simpe and intuitive to use…you really don’t need instructions.

To put CD albumns on the clip, just convert your CDs to MP3 files on your computer with a suitable audio file conversion program (available for free on the net- google “free audio file converter”), and then just drag and drop those MP3 files onto your Clip with a click of your mouse- it’s about as easy as it gets. The Clip does not require any special software or anything…

Just to be clear, the process of ripping your CDs is going to be the same no matter what portable player you get.  Most of the big media player applications (WMP, Winamp, etc.) have CD ripping functionality.  There are also more sophisticated tools like dbPoweramp that specialize in ripping.  All these tools extract the digital audio from your CD, convert it MP3 (or whatever format you want) and then save the files to the hard drive on your computer.

Once you’ve ripped your CDs, you can just drag and drop the files onto the Clip like the previous post said.  Also, most media aplayer application have the capability to automatically synchronize the files on your computer with the Clip.

Hmm…now you’ve got me wondering:  if radio recordings on the Clip are in WAV format, couldn’t you also rip into lossless WAV and store CD albums that way.  Sure, they’d be HUUUUUUUGGGGGE, but it’s an alternative to converting to MP3. 

I seem to remember that WAV is NOT listed as one of the Clip’s native formats, but surely you just slip a ripped CD into the “FM Recording” folder and the unit would be none the wiser?

-Matt

There is no charge to play radio over the Clip.  The Clip simply tunes in to and plays regular FM radio (not satellite radio, etc.).

The Clip in fact will play a WAV file.  But as noted above, a WAV file is large, many times the size of even a well-ripped (i.e., high rip rate) compressed music file.  Given the limited space on the Clips, one may prefer compressed files, so as not to have to be transferring music to the Clip more frequently.  E.g. on a 2 gb Clip, uncompressed music may only allow 2-3 CDs on a Clip; compressed, 15-20 or more (depending on rip rate).

Hey…wow! Ya CAN rip CD’s to MP3 with Windows Media Player! Cool! Thank you, Skinjob!

@miikerman wrote:

The Clip in fact will play a WAV file.  But as noted above, a WAV file is large, many times the size of even a well-ripped (i.e., high rip rate) compressed music file. 

Thanks for clarifying…but don’t get me wrong.  I wasn’t advocating it be done this way…many here are skilled enough to transcode into numerous formats.  I was wondering (hypothetically)…“what about those who are not sure how to rip and convert the file into an MP3?”  In that case I think you might be able to drag the WAV files directly from the disk to the Clip.  Now it’s a different question entirely about whether that’s an efficient thing to do!

-Matt

@sansamatt wrote:


@miikerman wrote:

The Clip in fact will play a WAV file.  But as noted above, a WAV file is large, many times the size of even a well-ripped (i.e., high rip rate) compressed music file. 


Thanks for clarifying…but don’t get me wrong.  I wasn’t advocating it be done this way…many here are skilled enough to transcode into numerous formats.  I was wondering (hypothetically)…“what about those who are not sure how to rip and convert the file into an MP3?”  In that case I think you might be able to drag the WAV files directly from the disk to the Clip.  Now it’s a different question entirely about whether that’s an efficient thing to do!

 

-Matt

While you could rip to uncompressed wav files, it’s not really ideal.  First there’s the size issue, and second, wavs don’t have any standard tagging support. So the Clip wouldn’t be able to get the artist/album info from the file.  Everything would show up as “unknown”.

I always recommend ripping to a lossless format like FLAC.  Once you’ve got your files in lossless you can always transcode to any lossy format you want for portable use.  And you can change your mind as often as you want and try different bitrates or codecs.  If you rip straight to a lossy format like MP3 you’re pretty much stuck with that codec and bitrate forever. Transcoding a lossy file to another bitrate/codec incurrs significant additional loss.

I’ve ripped about 3000 CDs to FLAC and use Winamp to sync to my Clip and Fuze.  Winamp’s portable sync feature will automatically transcode to the codec/bitrate of your choice.  Once you’ve got it setup, you just connect your your player and click the sync button.

On a side note, FLAC support is coming to both the Clip and Fuze in the near future.  FLAC files are still kind of big for the limited amount of storage on the Clip (FLAC is typically around 65% of the uncompressed wav), so you’ll still probably want to transcode to MP3 or Ogg Vorbis.  But the fact that it will support FLAC at all is pretty cool.