Win A Finis XtreaMP3 Waterproof Digital Music Player

It’s time to clear some shelf space and what better way than with some contests. Companies send a lot of products to me to review and I can’t keep them all, so I need to give some of this stuff away to make room for more stuff that I can review for you. To do this, I will have a new contest every week until I run out of stuff to give away. Let’s get started with the Finis XtreaMP3 waterproof digital music player.

FINIS XtreaMP3 player

I took this guy on a 7 day hike along the Paria river from Utah to Arizona where there was a lot of dirt and plenty of water. It did great, but all my music listening is at my computer or in my car. So I cleaned it up and it’s back in the box, ready for one of you to win.

Entering is very easy. Just use the widget below to enter here on the blog, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck and don’t forget to tell a friend. The more exposure each contest gets, the more contests we can have.

Iomoio : Cheap MP3s And Two Free MP3 Downloads For Signing Up

I had the opportunity this week to check out another site where you can search for and buy mp3 songs on the cheap. At 16 cents a track, iomoio.com is a fraction of other sites, leaving you to ask, “What’s the catch?”

iomoio.com site review

What’s The Catch

The first thing most people wonder about a site offering cheap mp3 music downloads is if it is legal. According to the site’s FAQ, it is. The reason they can offer these tracks for so cheap is because they’re outside the U.S. and have different licensing rules and agreements. Giving your credit card to a site outside the U.S. might make some people nervous, but I didn’t feel that way with iomoio.

Features, Selection, And Quality

Any time I visit a music site that I haven’t been to before, I look for three key components: site features/usability, music selection, and quality of the music being played. I give iomoio.com a 90/100 for features and usability. The site was very easy to sign up and navigate and finding tracks was easy with a comprehensive search that auto-completes for artist, album, and track. In my searches, I found most of what I searched for, and I have an interesting taste in music. Even though it didn’t find one of the tracks I was searching for, it did find a few artists I didn’t expect results for, like Faderhead and Stromkern. Of course, iomoio had plenty of the top artists like Rihanna and Lady Gaga too. I gave iomoio a 95/100 on selection. Out of the 10 tracks I searched for, it found nine, but the site had two out of three albums for the one it didn’t find.

When viewing a list of tracks, you are presented with a play button to preview the track, but the music preview plays about four different parts of the track rather than just the first 30 seconds, providing a better sample of what you’re buying. In addition, the preview lets you skip ahead by clicking the outer ring of the circle. When you purchase, you get to download mp3 songs without any DRM, so you can add them to any of your devices and listen wherever you want.

iomoio.com site review

When a track or album is purchased, it’s placed in your Downloads page, where you can download a .ZIP archive including the song or album. Downloaded tracks included the important track information like album, artist, track number, etc. and are 256k, earning a 100/100 for quality. The tracks I listened to sounded perfect.

As a bonus, when you sign up, you get two free tracks. I give that 100/100.

Conclusions

Like a lot of people in the U.S., I’m a little sensitive about who I give my credit card information to. Being a site in a foreign land may turn people away, but the trade-off is really cheap tracks at great quality with fast downloads. Even if you’re not ready to make a purchase, just head over and pick up a couple free tracks.

Although the preceding was a sponsored review, as always I strive to provide an honest opinion of the product reviewed.

Finis XtreaMP3 – The Tough Waterproof MP3 Player

A few weeks ago, I was busy trying to make an old iPod shuffle ready for dirt and water and whatever else might happen to it over the following seven days. As I was devising ways to make an iPod waterproof, the FINIS XtreaMP3 waterproof digital music player arrived for me to review. I dropped my special project to open up the box and see what it was all about.

FINIS XtreaMP3 player

XtreaMP3 Technical Specs

Often, when I find out something is made to be rugged or, in this case, waterproof, I fear for the loss of traditional features. The first thing I noticed with the XtreaMP3 was the lack of any digital screen to show me a playlist or even what song is playing. I may be a bit spoiled, but I wasn’t much surprised. This, after all, is meant to be waterproof and I guess no digital readout is the trade-off. Moving along, I found this player to have many of the standard features expected of an MP3 player, including:

• 1GB of storage
• MP3 and WMA Compatible, iTunes Convertible
• Playlists
• Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery
• Basic play controls

…and, of course, a couple unique to a sport or waterproof player:

• Air-tight, waterproof ear buds
• Neoprene arm strap

Like some car MP3 players, playlists on this device are created by just dropping music into a folder. This is a little less convenient than creating a playlist via software and it means you’ll have to be creative if you want to put the tracks in a specific order. The 1GB of storage seems a little low from the perspective of someone with a 64GB iPhone, but for its size and durability, it gets the job done.

The River Test

This product arrived with exceptional timing for a proper test. Why just play with it near water for a day when you can fully immerse it into the type of activity that its creators had in mind? After charging the XtreaMP3 up fully and squeezing as much music as possible onto it, I took it with me on a seven day hike. Starting in Utah, two friends and I followed the Paria River 63 miles into Arizona, enduring cold, heat, mud, water, climbing and a lot of dirt and sand throughout. For those seven days, the XtreamMP3 tagged along in my pocket, surviving the same elements, and occasionally making the trip easier with music.

FINIS XtreaMP3 in the Paria River

The picture above is not just of me on the river. Below is a close-up where you can see a wet, dirty, mud-covered XtreaMP3. Towards the end of our hike, I stopped to relax in the river with the best of Johnny Cash.

FINIS XtreaMP3 player

Although the waterproofed controls of the XtreaMP3 took some getting used to, the waterproofed ear buds sounded much better than I had expected. The arm band (which I did not take with me) takes some practice the first time to get the music player to attach to it and stay attached. One of the more unique elements FINIS included was the way in which the XtreaMP3 is charged. There’s a small waterproof sleeve that covers the tiny USB connector to keep water out. I’m not sure if any water got through, but I never had a problem with it working, even submerged in the river.

Conclusions

At about $90, the XtreaMP3 is a little less than most iPods, but you’ll trade some features for the peace of mind that a little dirt and water is no match for your music. Even accidentally throwing this player around didn’t phase it. The XtreaMP3 is the easy choice for the outdoor adventurer, surfer, or swimmer.