Nokia Lumia 920/928 as a music player vs...
06-11-2013 12:05 PM
- Windows Phone Community:
I have done quite a bit of searching on the forum and the web in general and I am not finding any real satisfactory answers for my quandary. To start off, I am platform agnostic, and I currently have a BlackBerry Bold 9930 (VZW) and I frequently use it as a PMP (Personal Media Player) for my library of M4A audio. I am considering an upgrade to a newer phone, but the ability to perform VERY WELL as a PMP is essential. None of the Z10 reviews really touch on the music player or audio quality, so the small bits of information there wasn't much help.
I could upgrade to a BlackBerry Z10 (but the music player MUST be an improvement over the PlayBook music player, which is quite poor even when compared to the player on OS7.1), the hopefully soon to be announced Nokia Lumia 928/Lazer/Catwalk (assuming it has a good music player and a SD card slot) or wait for the 64GB HTC One variant to release on VZW and pick that up. I have used Android prior to my switch to BlackBerry so I am familiar with the music player options and functionality.
I could keep using my 9930 but the 32GB limitation on the SD card has been a real hassle for me as I have close to 50GB of music that I carry with me. I rotate between my ZuneHD, Nokia N9 (not compatible with VZW), and HTC Incredible (Power AMP) for music player duties, but I would like to be able to carry a SINGLE device. No, I don't listen to all of the music every time I am out, but having to create playlists with anticipation of my musical mood for each day is a real PITA and re-syncing ~30GB of music to my 9930 takes a long time. Many people question the NEED for 64GB of storage space or SD slot expansion, but I suppose it comes down to personal preference. I don't NEED it, but I would LIKE it.
My question is for Lumia 920 owners who USE their phones as Media Players for music and their honest experiences. Would I be happy with the 920/928's capabilities/software or would I better served going elsewhere for my specific wants? If I should look elsewhere, what other options would you recommend? I'll probably cross post this on the other M.Nations forums for feedback there as well. Thanks for any help you can provide.
NOTE: The cost of the iPhone 5 (64GB) is relatively prohibitive off contract ($850); I am confined to VZW or AT&T due to geographic location; I currently have a grandfathered Unlimited Plan on VZW that I would lose in a contract upgrade and I don't want to lose that. I am also NOT a fan of the SGS series phones, as they look and feel cheap and I don't care for touchwiz.03-25-2013 04:07 PM
- If you are into Xbox Music cloud - yes worth it. If you are reliable on syncing and metadata etc stuff - then not in its current state. I have a Xbox Music Pass and I rely heavily on cloud and I have unlimited internet. My music library is endless and my playlists are already made in cloud for me. I play at will, don't care about album art. I'm happy. Renewed my pass a week ago and can't see Spotify etc apps as a substitute.03-25-2013 04:43 PM
(First up I work for Nokia, so will give comments related to Nokia only)
Within Nokia Music you have the unlimited streaming for free, but then on the Music Player we have this neat feature whereby when you are listening to your local music, if you swipe Right to Left you will get a rich artist page that contains:
- Ability to create a mix based on that artist
- Wikipedia info on artist
- Artist imaged you can save to your phone (and use as lockscreen)
- Official tweets (where applicable)
- Gig info (if they are touring)
- Mix Radio channel if they are on one of the channels
It has all the standard stuff you would wish for...
Hope this helps.
deano03-25-2013 04:43 PM
- I personally think the 920 is excellent as a music player. It does have a few issues that are annoying however.
1. Your music must be properly tagged, like iOS it relies on tags to sort music by albums, artist etc, if you just have a bunch of mp3s in folders it will be a mess. This wasn't a issue fort me as I tagged all my music about 6 years ago but I have seen this issue posted multiple times.
2. Bluetooth audio reliability is hit or miss. Some cars I have driven the past few months will crash the Bluetooth stack multiple times over the course of a few hours. Other cars are rock solid. The headphone jack always works however so in those cars I just use the aux port.
3. Maximum volume is a bit low for my tastes, not terribly soft but I wouldn't mind a bit more volume sometimes.03-25-2013 04:43 PM
- I struggle with the same sort of issue myself. For me though, I have an unlimited data plan still so I tend to stream everything so that way I can access all of my ~30GB music library with out figuring out what to sync to my 32GB phone. I know you want to carry 50GB of music around but that just seems crazy to me. Do you have unlimited data? Have you thought of streaming it? What happens when you add another 10GB there aren't many phones that can handle that much music unless it has a memory slot.
Here are my experiences:
I have been using a 920 since January 2013. Windows Phone 8 so far is the worst experience I have had with trying to listen to my media. The lack of apps doesn't help. The best I have been able to do is use Plex to stream my music. However, Plex's app is very out dated and very buggy. Also, Plex doesn't support playlists. But this is the best I can find. If there is anything else, please let me know because this really isn't a solution and I curse at it daily.
Now, my best experience so far, and one regret with going with the 920, is iOS and iTunes Match. I had the iPhone 4 previous to the 920. I was able to match my entire collection to iTunes and then stream it (technically the first time it streams and then it stores the file on the phone). It even syncs the playlists. I would buy music from Amazon (usually cheaper), which automatically added it to iTunes, which automatically matched it and it became available on my iPhone. This is the way it should be IMHO. Everything automatic and within minutes of purchasing.
I have tried the same thing on my Nexus 7 with Amazon MP3 it is doesn't work as well. Haven't tried Google Play yet.
If Microsoft implements the same "match" capability as iTunes and they fix the music app to make it work better then it might be just as good.03-25-2013 05:01 PM
- Wow! Thanks for the great replies so far.
@ rockstarzzz: I'm not much of a cloud player. I prefer to have my music with me because I live in the middle of a mountain valley and service (on any carrier) gets spotty at best when traveling through the surrounding mountains. This would mean minutes to hours of no music access, which is further exacerbated by the fact that I do most of my traveling on my motorcycle, where it is extremely difficult to stop and fiddle with the phone to change music sources. I do like to use Slacker on occasion when I am tethered to my desk at work.
@ Deano42: Nokia music looks pretty cool. I'll do some looking on the Nokia site. I am quite happy with the interface and usability of the music program on my Nokia N9, and if the 920/928 program compares favorably, that is a great sign.
@ Narse77: Great reply, thank you. 1) All of my music is properly tagged, sorted into folders by Album Title, and include 500x500 album art files (tagged and in the folders). I'm a bit Type A. 2) I use an AUX input in my car and wired In-Ear monitors while on the bike, so bluetooth isn't a huge issue, but good to note for use with my BB Music Gateway at home. Thank you. 3) I don't use much in the way of volume (afraid of hearing damage) so that may not be an issue, but again, thank you for the info. Always good to know such things.
@ Scott Maier: As I told rockstarzzz, I'm not a cloud person. I like to have my data with me instead of relying on the cloud to be available and accessible. In the same way that I prefer to buy CDs/DVDs/BRDs over digital media. I like to actually possess the things I buy. Oldschool I guess. Yes, I have unlimited Data and I do use it to stream media through services like Slacker and the like. Works fine, but not ideal in a geographically isolated area where service is spotty. I use iTunes to sort and process and tag my audio files (offline) but I prefer to use my Zune software to listen to media. I suppose I could move to the iPhone, but I didn't much care for my iPod touch (2nd Gen) and I gave it away and bought a ZuneHD. The interface and audio quality were sorely lacking (IMO of course) and I was a huge fan of the Zune line from the start. I still have my ZHD and my 30GB Zune Gen1. Buying music isn't a big deal as I prefer to purchase actual CDs, but I can see where having the ability to buy music and have it sync to the device automatically would be pretty slick. My PlayBook syncs wirelessly with my PC via BBDesktopManager and that has been a pretty good experience, though the Z10 uses new software and it is lacking in some of the basic features of BBDM. Food for thought, for sure.
Thank you all for your feedback thus far.
~Ex03-25-2013 05:22 PM
- Not to try to sway your 920 decision but I think the 8x would be slightly better only if you stream music. The audio quality on the 8x sounds superior than the 920's. More so when coupled with some descent to great headphones. The 8x really shines when you connect to home entertainment systems. But truth be told, the best pmp would be the Zune 64GB. The sound quality is still almost unmatched, it had HD radio, and controls are better since you can control the music without looking, bit you know that already.
Just my 2cents.03-25-2013 05:27 PM
- I think also that Lumia 920 is an excellent music player, with very good battery life for lissening musics (own music collection and offline radio) - yeah, 50 to 70 hours as a music player ... Nokia Music Radio mix online does not eat your battery too much either ... I can not say the same about streaming and online radio channels ... well, Lumia 920 is not for a such big collection, but if you are ready to limit your music collection (I have 1550 mp3 songs, appr. 7,5 Gb) ... Lumia 928 might have a SD card slot too, so it might be the right one for you ... I never use any software to sync, just moving songs in mass storage mode and making my playlists by Windows Explorer ... moving songs in mass storage mode is very fast ...
What I like is very fast use, to continue lissening is 3 clicks (power - volume down - play) and I like to pin to start my playlists and my favour Nokia radio channels (you can pin offline radio channel too, as well as your own radio mix) - they have great looking live tiles ... and you can pin to start a certain album or singer too, if you like ... I had to make some further tagging for my songs, because MS Music & Videos need that, but Nokia Music is forgiving for missing some tags ...
I have downloaded album cover and artist pics by MPAtool ... but it is not needed, just if you like it ....
Last edited by Jaripi; 03-25-2013 at 06:11 PM.03-25-2013 05:35 PM
- @deano_42 maybe you lot could make it possible to make a simple playlist then on your app.
Seriously, the one thing people do the most is skim past their library and make a quick list, and that seems unnecessarily complicated on your app, it had me infuriated and I removed it completely, not that the Xbox app is better, both are terrible.03-25-2013 05:37 PM
- I really like the 920 as a music player. I use it nearly everyday when I workout. The music sounds fine to me but the syncing could be a little easier. I also think the player application could be a little easier to make playlists. Don't get me wrong, its very usable, just could be cleaned up a bit.03-26-2013 11:03 PM
- I am very happy with my 920, wish I could have more space for more of my songs though, I had to pick and choose what I wanted on the phone (although an SD slot would make that point moot) The sound quality is great, the fluidity of the xbox music app is very nice. There are a few little annoyances with it though and that is mostly with the playlist creation. Apple has this one down, its just smooth. I a pretty sure things will get ironed out in the end, but that really is my only sticking point. I LOVE when you just hit the play button just in the app it will do a shuffle of all the songs. under the album art you have a list of the upcoming three songs after the one you are listening too. If you tap on that, it brings up an entire list of the songs order so you can pop ahead in the shuffle, or pop back. And if you long hold on a song in the library while its playing, you can choose to add it to the shuffle. it gets added as the next song which is great when you want shuffle, but want a specific song in line as well. So my only beef is the playlist stuff. I do not stream from my library, I use Pandora occasionally,
(I am a previous Iphone owner, with music match enabled)03-27-2013 12:26 AM
- Oh and just to add, the microsoft itunes / wp sync software doesnt work at all well, and the ratings on the wp player no longer works as its still the old zune player sw.. Using xbox cloud and own music creates duplicate records on the phone and requies a reset to remove..
The new windows 8 music app doesnt support dinamic playlist or ratings and creating playlist on the phone is a pain...
The native wp music capability is very much work in progress, i would guess at least another year before it resembles sonething useful...03-28-2013 02:34 PM
- 920 as a music player is unable to play tracks in order- full stop. If album has 2 and more disks it will play track 1 from 1'st disk, then track 1 from the 2'nd disk and so on, rather then 1'st trac, 2'nd track... disk 1, and then stuff from disk 2. I other words as a music player it is disaster !06-11-2013 08:49 AM
- You can get 64GB iPod Touch if iPhone 5 seems too expensive for you and I must tell you that iPod Touches have great battery and stand by times.
Quality is ok (not too bad or not too good) but features are nice (all basic things like equalizer , airplay etc.)
L820 is nice device with 64GB SD-Card support.
I clearly think that my L820 beats iPod Touch's quality by a small margin in terms of loudness and quality.
I don't know if you have heard this or not , every company has kind of signature for its music player.
After using iPods for long time and listening to lumia sounded terrible and then after using lumia continuously as music player , iPod now sounds terrible.06-11-2013 10:13 AM
- Currently on the 920, but previously the 900. I carry my phone to the Y and I don't stream. So...I have a library on my phone of around 16GB of music (I'm also a dj with over 500GB of music on the home pc). I avoid playlists as I enjoy being surprised by a variety of genres from Stevie Wonder to The Qemists to Rob Zombie. I use the shuffle feature on the default player. I can't use the EQ feature because I use BT headets, so I can't comment there. All I can say is I get great battery life on the player (my headphones are older and die way before the phone even works up a sweat) and the shuffle is on point. I even enjoy the fact that when I get a text, my audio is interrupted and it will ask me if I want to read it or ignore. You won't get this on most other players.
It's obviously going to boil down to personal preference, but that's why you get the 14 day return period, unless you purchase outright. I hope this helps a little bit as I understand that you don't want to stream. Good Luck in you decision!06-11-2013 12:05 PMLike 1
- Windows Phones
- Microsoft / Nokia Phones
- Nokia Lumia 920
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