SanDisk's tiny, popular Sansa Clip flash-based MP3 player gets upgraded with a microSD slot and a slightly different name - the SanDisk Sansa Clip+.

The SanDisk Sansa Clip+ retains the same high quality audio and great value as the original SanDisk Sansa Clip, but the added storage slot gives the player even greater potential.

It is ideal for users who store music on their mobile phone's microSD card, but want something smaller for working out. The SanDisk Sansa Clip+ also will appeal to music-lovers who don't want to splurge hundreds of pounds on a fancy digital audio player, but still want an adequate number of extra features.

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In terms of design, there aren't too many changes between the Clip and the SanDisk Sansa Clip+. The directional pad is squared-shaped rather than round as is the Home button. Instead of a slider switch to power/lock the device, there's simply a dedicated button.

This change, while small, is significant: after a long period of use, the slider on my first-gen player started sticking as it trapped a lot of dirt and grime. To set the SanDisk Sansa Clip+ in lock mode, you simply hold down the Home button and the same to unlock it.

The actual clip has a slightly different design, as well. It is springier and has a sturdier construction than the first generation player's clip . The first-gen's clip was rounded with a circular cutout. Now, the clip is solid and square with the SanDisk logo on the back. In our informal tests of clipping both players to our shorts and running around the block, we found that the SanDisk Sansa Clip+ felt much more secure than the first-gen.

The microSD slot, which supports up to 16GB of external memory, lies below the headphone jack on the right spine of the SanDisk Sansa Clip+. Thankfully, there's no annoying cover over it like we've seen on other players. You simply pop in a microSD card and the player automatically refreshes your library to blend together the collections stored on the player and the card seamlessly.

SanDisk also has a line of slotRadio cards - cards preloaded with a variety of music from the Billboard charts - that are compatible with the player. When you insert slotRadio cards into the player, they go to a designated slotRadio application on the SanDisk Sansa Clip+.

The preloaded cards aren't really for us, but we can see how they would appeal to other audiences. People who don't want to deal with downloading music software or navigating online stores will appreciate the ease of simply popping in a card and listening to music instantly.

The SanDisk Sansa Clip+ player now supports a wider range of files including Ogg Vorbis and Audible for audio books.

The SanDisk Sansa Clip+ is available in 2GB, 4GB and 8GB.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

PCWorld.com

SanDisk Sansa Clip plus: Specs

  • 2GB/4GB/8GB
  • MP3, WMA, secure WMA, Audible, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, audio books, podcasts
  • Expandable microSD and microSDHC memory card slot
  • Digital FM tuner
  • Long-life, rechargeable battery with up to 15 hours of continuous playback
  • Built-in microphone
  • Large, bright (OLED) screen
  • Solid state flash memory
  • wearable clip
  • Compatible with Windows 7
  • 54x34x15mm
  • 2GB/4GB/8GB
  • MP3, WMA, secure WMA, Audible, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, audio books, podcasts
  • Expandable microSD and microSDHC memory card slot
  • Digital FM tuner
  • Long-life, rechargeable battery with up to 15 hours of continuous playback
  • Built-in microphone
  • Large, bright (OLED) screen
  • Solid state flash memory
  • wearable clip
  • Compatible with Windows 7
  • 54x34x15mm

OUR VERDICT

Despite being only a minor upgrade, the SanDisk Sansa Clip+ improves upon the already great SanDisk Sansa Clip MP3 player.

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