Zune first impressions

Discussion in 'iPod' started by qtip919, Sep 27, 2006.

  1. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #26
    It's a 3" screen at the same resolution ie. no more information. I wish people would stop saying that the 3" screen is the best thing about the Zune, it's got no more real estate than the 2.5" screen on the iPod because both of them are 320x240 - you don't get any more image when you use a bigger screen if the res is the same.

    iPod resolution = 160 pixels/inch
    Zune resolution = 133.33 pixels/inch

    Thus when viewing the same image on the iPod and the Zune the iPod would be clearer. Viewing the same text would show more "blockiness" on the Zune.

    For the Zune to get the same image clarity as the iPod it would need to have a screen resolution of 288x384 (remember, the screen is in portrait orientation). This would give the Zune the same 160 pixels/inch resolution of the iPod, making both images as clear as each other but as you can see there would now be 33,792 more pixels for the Zune to use to display more information. 3" at 240x320 is no better than 2.5" at 320x240, if MS wanted to upstage the iPod's gorgeous screen they should have upped the resolution of the screen.
     
  2. davidjearly macrumors 68020

    davidjearly

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2006
    Location:
    Glasgow, Scotland
    #27
    Look at it, it's all there. The old style iPod controls were not as good as the 5G controls.

    Yes, it is a V1 product, 5 or 6 Generations too late! And I can't see MS putting any innovative ideas into it in any future revision.

    MS have allowed what exactly? Hopefully you have the brains not to be suggesting that Apple has only been so successful because MS haven't attempted to compete - until not. If so, then that is just nonsense.

    You mean, they are imitating Apple (albeit badly). Adapt their business model how? With Music subscriptions? I don't see no adaptation, I see the same old same old from the same old company that forces stuff down peoples necks using its financial monopoly.

    I really REALLY doubt I would think Apple have designed any aspect of this thing including the software. The last time I checked, my iPod didn't have a cluttered menu system with ugly backgrounds.

    They are different products and I am making no assumption. MS is clearly aiming this oversized brick as a better video player than Apple's 5G iPod. Hence the landscape screen orientation when viewing movies (which I note is the same resolution as Apple's smaller screen).

    The only benefit I can see from MS Zune player is the fact that it will prevent Apple from sitting around doing nothing with their iPod because they have a little competiton. Although, I could never see them doing this anyway.
     
  3. someguy macrumors 68020

    someguy

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    Location:
    Still here.
    #28
    All I want to know is... what the hell does "Zune" mean, anyways?
     
  4. DubbaJ macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2006
    Location:
    Sarnia, ON, Canada
    #29
    I think it's Latin for "We probably would have been more successful with this 2 years ago".
     
  5. Synapple macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    #30
    I would really love to understand how the software on the Zune has left such an impression on the OP...
    Already asked by a fellow poster but I'll reiterate: care to elaborate on this?

    lol @ the screen size debate :p
     
  6. qtip919 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    #31
    For confidentiality reasons, I cannot.

    However, I can say this:

    1. I love the Mac OS, the iPod UI and Apple's general hardware/software solutions.
    2. I HATE the MS operating system, their "new" longhorn, and most of the garbage they create year after year

    This being said, I was absolutely blown away by the Zune interface. I was really in awe of how well they have done to use the strengths of the ipod and iterate on some of their weaknesses.

    For example, if you click on a song within the ipod UI, you get several screens, one after another and the most ANNOYING thing is that you cannot "tag" a song when doing this to make it part of your automated "on the go" playlist. To do this, you need to back out to the playlist, scroll down (potentially) and find the song, click and hold it and wait for it to flash.

    This, in my opinion, is one of their most undiscoverable poorly designed features.

    Zune's way of doing everything listed above is fantastic. However, you are just going to have to experience it for yourself.

    TO ALL THOSE WHO THINK I AM POSTING THIS FOR MARKETING A MS PRODUCT:

    Whatever, go crawl in your self-righteous hole and brag about our 4% marketshare some more...

    Look, All I am saying is that this is to our collective benefit as APPLE CUSTOMERS. I think the past couple of ipod designs have made the ipod worse. Honestly. I could care less about video capability, I just want something with good battery life. Also, I HATE the new hardware...far too delicate...and battery life is sub-par to what they could be producing. I wish they would go back to a more modest design with the screens, extend battery life, make digital output, and iterate on the ability for the ipod to help you LISTEN TO YOUR MUSIC!!
     
  7. qtip919 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    #32
    Look, everyone has this worry...I wouldnt assume this was impossible...but lets face facts: this isnt an OS, and an MP3 players OS is pretty darn easy to get right....

    however...you just never know ;)
     
  8. amin macrumors 6502a

    amin

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #33
    I disagree. I haven't seen the Zune, nor do I like its design, but I think a larger screen is better in this case. My Ipaq 4700 had the same number of pixels as its Dell counterpart, 640 x 480, but the larger screen of the Ipaq is much nicer. I don't think the iPod needs as much pixel density as it has; and I would prefer a larger screen, even though it means a lower resolution in this case.
     
  9. Synapple macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    #34
    Thanks for going back to this point.

    As you say I will probably have to hold one in my hand before understanding why you judged the OS on the Zune this impressive.
    Nonetheless, you seem to imply they literally copied the iPod software and improved it where it seemed lacking.
    Fine.
    Besides, I would judge an OS "impressive" or "incredible" when introducing a revolutionary system or an innovative approach to doing things: OTOH, cloning a system and ironing out minor aspects of it (frankly, the example you mentioned seems pretty minor to me) doesn't "blow me away" or "leave me in awe".
    But that's just me and I understand you had a good experience with the Zune.
     
  10. qtip919 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    #35
    Here is why I said this was all smoke and mirrors:
     

    Attached Files:

  11. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #36
    Definitely bigger, but that still doesn't make it widescreen.

    EDIT: Since they have the same resolution if you hold the iPod at 2.5/3 of the distance as the Zune they will give the same image on your retina. i.e if you place the Zune 12 inches from your eye (or the camera) and the iPod at 10 inches you won't see a difference anymore.

    B
     
  12. MacinDoc macrumors 68020

    MacinDoc

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    The Great White North
    #37
    It's because both players display the exact same amount of information. You could make a 52" TV with a resolution of 320 X 240, but nobody would want to watch it, because you'd just see the same number of pixels as you'd get on a 12" TV, the pixels would only be larger and the picture more blocky.

    The extra 0.5" the Zune has means nothing without a higher resolution. And "widescreen" refers to the ratio of width to height on the screen, which is identical on both players. Neither player is more "widescreen" than the other.
    Exactly. Or wear reading glasses with 1.2 X magnification while watching your iPod, the effect would be the same.
     
  13. kineticpast macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #38
    /me bangs head against wall...

    For goodness sake, we all know the Zune is bigger, have you not read any of the comments here?
     
  14. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #39
    Well he is fooling himself a bit with perspective by placing the zune further away and taking the picture at an angle so it looks a smidge narrower.

    That's it! The Zune's secret weapon is that to view widescreen movies you have to hold the suna at just the right angle so it looks 16:9 thus giving you 30% more vertical resolution. :p You have to hold it real steady though, otherwise people will tend to look like stick figures.

    B
     
  15. ZoomZoomZoom macrumors 6502a

    ZoomZoomZoom

    Joined:
    May 2, 2005
    #40
    Nice, informative and pretty unbiased review.

    Yep. It's like people who are wishing for 17'' MBPs to magically have a 15'' diagonal. Whether or not the bigger screen is useful is another question. I wouldn't know; I'm not an on-the-go video guy.

    Anyways, I think that this shows that the Zune as a piece of hardware is a competitor and not a flop. However, whether or not it'll have the software and branding power to make it a competitor to Apple will remain to be seen.
     
  16. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #41
    Not really a good analogy, since the 15" and 17" have different resolutions unlike the Zune and iPod screens. The 17" can display more information than the 15".

    The comparison between the 12" iBook G4 and the 14" would have been more appropriate since they shared the same resolution, but at different sizes.

    B
     
  17. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2005
    Location:
    visiting from downstream
    #42
    Great review, qtip!

    While I've firmly embraced the iPod, I think the Zune holds a lot of promise, and I'll be buying one when they're released. Like a lot of folks, I have never bought any music from iTMS (I don't buy bits, I buy CDs), so I can play my music on ANY device I want.

    The only real complaint I have with the Zune at this point is that the 30 GB HD is not big enough. I need at least 40 GB to hold all of my music.
     
  18. 2nyRiggz macrumors 603

    2nyRiggz

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2005
    Location:
    Thank you Jah...I'm so Blessed
    #43
    Wow, there are a lot of long post in this thread so let me break it down some...you are impressed by the zune..thats great for you. I'm not interested in purchasing one because it won't play my itunes purchased music and it won't work on macs but I do want to see what it can do.

    Yup the screen is bigger but its at the same res. (if I'm reading correct) so hands down there is really nothing there but bigger pixels but hey...whatever right..fight to the death.

    I would buy anything except creative players.


    Bless
     
  19. MacinJosh macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Location:
    Finland
    #44
    Geez... how thick is your head?
     
  20. clayj macrumors 604

    clayj

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2005
    Location:
    visiting from downstream
  21. gloss macrumors 601

    gloss

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Location:
    around/about
  22. huck500 macrumors 6502

    huck500

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    Location:
    Southern California
    #47
    Without going into the whole screen size thing, which has been addressed in multiple posts and apparently ignored, it's amazing to me that MS decided not to go with a wide screen... I guess it would be a design challenge to fit the controls on the device, but I won't be buying a replacement for my iPod until someone releases a widescreen player. I had a PSP for a while, and after watching Deadwood on that big, beautiful (slowly refreshing) screen there's no way that Apple's 'video' iPods are going to work for me.

    If Apple releases a real video iPod that also stores all my music, I'll be first in line.

    I kind of like the more rugged, customizable concept of the Zune, personally, but there's absolutely no way I'll be using their software, Mac version or not, if it's anything like Media Center.
     
  23. spicyapple macrumors 68000

    spicyapple

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    #48
    Things Apple can do to improve on the iPod (video):
    1. Use icons for navigation, instead of a text listing (copy Blackberry, for example. :))
    2. Increase screen resolution and size (480x360), portrait orientation.
    3. Aluminum finish, ala nanos

    Things that will definitely kill Zune:
    1. DRM-infection of all your music (whether you want it or not)
    2. Limited video playback
    3. Lack of a comparable iTunes jukebox software.
     
  24. Chris Bangle macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #49
    I say that the Zune has a bit of personallity. It something different, sadly everyone has an ipod and they dont realy seem that special anymore..... The zune for a few weeks after it release will be quite a cool thing to have. In January everything will change but I quite like the zune. Its alrite.

    I may completly regret this opinion of the zune one day soon, so Ill cover up by sayin i was half asleep when i wrote this,

    (even though its 4.45pm)
     
  25. wiseguy27 macrumors 6502

    wiseguy27

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #50
    Actually, Zune does not infect all music with DRM. Any non-protected media that's imported will remain unprotected - it won't add DRM to those files! BUT, what it does do is limit playback to 3 days or 3 times when you receive ANY file from someone else through wireless from another Zune device (even if the file is unprotected and could possibly be a non-copyrighted/personal one). So there goes the utility of beaming one's personal videos or music compositions to friends/relatives/strangers (not that many people are into this, but it still is a crappy restriction).

    All the details about Zune are available from a reliable source - http://www.zuneinsider.com - a blog by one of the developers in the Zune team at MS.
     

Share This Page