Gadget time - MP3 player

This year, the choir has gone hi-tech. Well not exactly. But we now have a semi-functioning website (they call it an intranet, but from my knowledge of IT, that would only apply if we were on the same network, but that's beside the point). Well, we log in to the website, and get important notices, choir rosters for the weekend, and loads of other stuff. But most importantly, any new songs to be learnt are now available on the website in mp3 format (that's what they said, but the ones there today are in Windows Media Audio format, but again, shut up Boso, and stop being such a smartass). And from now on, before every rehearsal (Thursday, today), you must have listened to the song, learnt it, and be ready to learn how to sing the harmonies, and any new arrangements. This way, we can learn up to 5 songs a week (at least that's the aim). There are currently 6 songs online now, of which I only know one. The songs are made available on Tuesdays, so it's a 2 day window, but with my lifestyle, I don't have the time to listen to it when at home, as I get home pretty late. And now that music has been banned in the office, that means that I can't listen at work either. So there's only one solution. I have to get myself an MP3 player as soon as possible.

I was already planning to get a digital recorder to use in choir rehearsals. But I discovered over Christmas that I could get a combined MP3 player/voice recorder. But these things cost money. Which I don't have. But this is becoming more and more of a necessity, and I'm gonna stuggle to cope with choir till I get one.

Being Boso, I've done some research. So these are the contenders, in order of price:

1. Phillips HDD120 Jukebox

With a built in voice recorder, and 20GB hard drive, this is a very lovely piece of kit. Price? Argos is currently doing a sale and it's available for £199.99. Richer Sounds has it for £249.99, which is the price at loads of other places. I would prefer a larger hard drive, but this is the largest Phillips do, so the only reason I'd buy this is because it's the cheapest.

2. iRiver H320

Also with a built-in voice recorder, but this also has an FM radio !! Also the colour screen is a big plus, it also allows you to view JPEG and BMP images. However, it also has a 20GB hard-disk, and if I get this one it will also be based on price. Richer Sounds has it for £259.95. Saw it at Dixons just before Christmas, but the price was so laughable, I've forgotten it (it was £300 plus tho...!) Currently available on an eBay shop for £209 (delivered from the US) and on Amazon.co.uk for £219.00

3. iRiver H340

This is currently sitting very comfortably at the top of my priority list. All the features of the H320, but with a 40GB hard disk !! The price? £311.99 from amazon.co.uk, or £269.00 from the eBay shop. It's been hard to find this player around in stores, but this is what I want........if I can somehow come up with the money.

4. Iriver IHP140

In reality, this is what I'll most likely get. It has the required voice recorder, and even packs an FM receiver, but the screen is unfortunately not colour. :( But with a 40GB hard drive, I'm not likely to run out of space anytime soon. This kit goes for £239.99 from amazon.co.uk and £249.95 from Richer Sounds.

So which will it be? I'm not so sure. I'm too broke to buy any of them at the moment, so I'll try and save till the end of March and see which I can get.

Fingers (and toes) crossed !!

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