IRiver has released a new hard-drive based MP3 player to compete with players such as Apple's iPod Mini, the Rio Carbon, and the Creative Zen Micro. IRiver's H10 player has a 5 GB hard drive, a 1.5-inch color display, the ability to pick up FM radio , audio recording, and the ability to display JPG graphic files. The player retails for $280.
Apple's IPod used to be the benchmark for portable MP3 players, but now everyone seems to be gunning for the IPod Mini.
Joining competitors like the Rio Carbon and the Creative Zen Micro is IRiver's $280 H10.
The highlight of the H10 is an attractive 1.5-inch display that, combined with an improved hardware-and-software interface, makes the player a joy to use.
Navigating your music library is easy with the touch-sensitive slider control, and IRiver has wisely abandoned the oversimplified folder structure that it used on previous hard drive players.
Now you can easily browse by artist, album, genre, or song title.
The player lets you add individual songs (but not albums or artists) to an on-the-go playlist called QuickList.
I imagine that most people will prefer to create playlists on their PC and sync them to the device.
The H10 does more than play music: You can also listen to and record FM radio, record audio with a built-in microphone, display text files, and even view JPG photos.
Since the H10 lacks a video output, you can't display those images on a TV as you can with the IPod Photo; and if you want to move the photos to another PC, you'll have to carry around the proprietary USB and power connector.
The H10's battery is replaceable and rechargeable (IRiver offers an optional second battery for $40 more).
The company rates the battery's run time between charges at about 12 hours.
Rounding out the package is an exceptionally functional case that protects the unit's elegant finish (it's available in silver, blue, red, and gray).
The translucent, rubbery case has a great feel and fits snugly around the player while leaving the screen visible and all the player's controls accessible.
So how does the H10 match up to the IPod Mini?
About the author: Mike Adams is a natural health author and award-winning journalist with a passion for sharing empowering information to help improve personal and planetary health He has authored more than 1,800 articles and dozens of reports, guides and interviews on natural health topics, and he has published numerous courses on preparedness and survival, including financial preparedness, emergency food supplies, urban survival and tactical self-defense. Adams is an honest, independent journalist and accepts no money or commissions on the third-party products he writes about or the companies he promotes. In 2010, Adams created TV.NaturalNews.com, a natural living video sharing site featuring thousands of user videos on foods, fitness, green living and more. He's also the founder and CEO of a well known email mail merge software developer whose software, 'Email Marketing Director,' currently runs the NaturalNews email subscriptions. Adams volunteers his time to serve as the executive director of the Consumer Wellness Center, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and enjoys outdoor activities, nature photography, Pilates and martial arts training. He's also author of numerous health books published by Truth Publishing and is the creator of several consumer-oriented grassroots campaigns, including the Spam. Don't Buy It! campaign, and the free downloadable Honest Food Guide. He also created the free reference sites HerbReference.com and HealingFoodReference.com. Adams believes in free speech, free access to nutritional supplements and the ending of corporate control over medicines, genes and seeds. Known on the 'net as 'the Health Ranger,' Adams shares his ethics, mission statements and personal health statistics at www.HealthRanger.org
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