Okay, I’ve had this thing for almost a year now and I have been meaning to write this for almost that long. I did a diligent job on researching the other MP3 players out there and I picked the Nomad because it had lots of space (20 gigs), long battery life (11 hours on one or 22 on two) and excellent EQ and sound leveling? come on, what do you expect from Creative Labs! What I didn’t expect was that the firmware and software for it was so poorly written (and still is)! Okay, the headphone sucked too, but I expected that. Read on if you plan to buy one of these things?
Why The Nomad Sucks
One very important accessory they left out of the package is a straighten out paper clip! You need one handy for a few reasons. If you ?accidentally? leave it plugged in to its power supply over night, it won?t turn on?!?!?! Huh? I have never had any device in my life that did this! At first I thought the Nomad was bad and I contacted the Creative labs technical support. The said they needed to replace it. They did and it kept happening until I realized what the real problem was. The only way to get the player started is to stick a straighten paper clip into the reset hole in the underside of the player.
So after I was very careful to not keep my player plugged in, it kept happening! During this time I was transferring a lot of songs over to my player while I worked on another computer. Well, after a frustrating time wondering why I kept having to use my trusty paper clip every morning. I discovered that keeping the USB cable plugged into it overnight did something, so it needed to be reset every morning! Huh?
Before I move to the crappy software, there are a few more firmware issues. One is that there is no way that you can tell if you added an Album to the Playlist. So if you added it again (because you could not remember if it was in the play list or not), the firmware is too stupid to know that you already added it and adds it again. After about six months of wondering why some songs played all the time and others hardly ever played, I finally figured it out! I also found out that the play list can not be as long as you want. I recently hit some limit and had to kill off a big play list and make lots of smaller ones. When you select to play a play list, for some reason it will play songs that are not on that play list ?!?!? Also, the random song generator simply blows. It can actually play the same song twice in a row! With over 600 songs on my player, I don?t know why I hear the same song 3 or 4 times in 8 hours??
The Software Sucks? Then Got Worse!
The Play Center software that originally came with the Nomad looked like a summer intern wrote it! It did not ?play well? will other programs while transferring songs to the Nomad. Meaning it took over all the computers cycles and you could not user any other programs. Navigation around the Nomad major areas (Albums, Play lists etc.) is very poor. It?s funny how my CD player for my home stereo system can read the song names off of CD-R?s that I burn, but the Pay Center can not?
Anyway, I was hoping they would fix Play Center or come out with a better program? well they did. I just installed it and its worse! They seem to be forcing you to use this huge program Creative MediaSource Organizer. Even though it says it will work with the Nomad, it doesn’t unless you install a plug in. After going to their web site again, struggling though some error messages, deleting a device driver, installing it again and rebooting? it finally worked! But then it took me about 30 minutes just to figure out how to transfer a CD to the Nomad. The MediaSource Organizer is way to confusing to use. Most features that were in the Play Center are gone! You can?t add an entire album to the play list anymore? you have to add the tracks. The whole thing just sucks.
What Were They Thinking?
Okay Creative, good hardware but want went wrong with the software and firmware? Because of this I will NEVER purchase another Creative MP3 product. You have lost a customer forever. Actually, since we all paid for this piece of crap, I think that we all deserve the latest generation of MP3 player you have? for FREE! That?s the least you can do.