I just bought an 8GB Fuze, intending to replace a Sansa m250, primarily for the increased capacity which I had intended to further increase to 16GB with an 8GB microSDHC card. I use the player for recorded talks and books as well as music, with the emphasis on voice recordings rather than music.
I am very unhappy with playback quality. Volume on the Fuze is very low compared to the m250. I have to set the Fuze to maximum volume to equal less than half volume on the m250. In a quiet environment, that’s barely ok. It’s not going to work at all if there is competing environmental sound. I’ve tried swapping ear buds of the two players and there’s no change in Fuze volume. Interestingly, with a set of Panasonic mini headphones (unknown model), volume output from the two players is more similar.
If volume is set high or max, then mp3 files suffer from cutting out. Cutting out and crackling are worse with high volume and time of the problem varies. The identical tracks play perfectly on the m250, even if set to maximum volume (and the earbuds held away from the ear!). I upgraded the Fuze to .15 and tried an OGG file, and that was much, much worse. Cut outs were so frequent that I could not understand what was being said (this is an audio tape, not music). The same OGG file played perfectly on the computer, and much better if volume on the Fuze were reduced.
Crackling is much worse on the Fuze than on the m250; perhaps the high frequency distribution is different?
I did charge the battery, which after testing shows as 94% charged.
Has anyone else experienced problems like this?