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Best Portable MP3 Not iPod

Updated on May 28, 2013

You Have Great MP3 Alternatives to iPod

If you are looking for new digital MP3 player but prefer to find a device that is not locked into the Apple world, there is good news. Today there are some awesome portable music player alternatives that will get you outstanding function, superb-quality sound, and a great price.

Due to the huge success of the music player and the ability for many companies to tab into platforms like Android, these "other" devices have all of the features of the original, and in some cases more. Before you blindly go with the crowd, check out the best of the alternative options here. You will be pleasantly surprised.

Why Not Buy an iPod?

First of all, let's agree that the iPod family of music players is excellent. The quality is very high and they have set the bar for other to follow. That being said, there are a few key reasons that consumers like to steer clear of this brand.

The Software - iTunes is a software package that gets music onto an iPod. While it is a great software package, many people really hate being locked into this method of moving music onto the device. Many non-iPod devices simply plug in and are used like another drive.

Familiarity - So many consumers now have Android-powered phones and tablets that getting an MP3 players that uses this platform makes it easier to use and sync with Google software titles.

Cost - You normally get what you pay for, but when it comes to portable music players you can certainly pay a bit less than the iPod rate and get an awesome device. You will find other brands to undercut the Apple rate just enough to be noticed.

Full Android MP3 Player - No Monthly Fees

With Android you get the full Google Play store along with WiFi, front and back camera, and the versatility of removable memory for massive storage.

Samsung 3.6-Inch Galaxy Player (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Samsung 3.6-Inch Galaxy Player (Discontinued by Manufacturer)

I'm a huge Samsung fan, and the Galaxy Player is just one more reason. This is the first place to look when searching for a replacement for a full-sized iPod. It comes in different sizes, but the core features remain the same.

The Player looks like a smart phone, but without the contract. You will get full access to the huge Google Play store and its massive supply of apps with so many being free. The sound is great, and with WiFi you can enjoy online music, including Pandora and other popular apps, without additional charges. It even has a radio tuner, so you can pick up the local station as well.

The Samsung Galaxy Player also includes both front and rear cameras, so it's fun for shooting pictures and movies, as well as video chatting. Think of this as everything in a smart phone without the phone charges and with better sound. It is excellent!


The Walkman is Still Here!

This is not the old Walkman. This version is modern, functional, and has superb sound.

Sony NWZE464 8 GB Walkman MP3 Video Player (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
Sony NWZE464 8 GB Walkman MP3 Video Player (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)

Who really started it all? Sony did, with the original Walkman. These days, the Walkman more resembles a small iPod that the big brick many people clipped to their belt loop, but this version is pretty cool and it comes in a variety of colors so you can pick your favorite.

Think of the Walkman as a replacement for the iPod Nano. It's reasonably small and portable, yet powerful as a music player supporting not only music but pictures, video, podcasts, and it even has an FM radio tuner so you can listen to the radio.

This is a great MP3 player for running or tossing in your pocket, and it has the quality sound you would expect from Sony. The battery will power your tunes for up to 50 hours, so even a long road trip is no problem. If you want portability for music and other audio, the Sony Walkman MP3 player will do the trick and save you money.


Lot's of Music For a Small Price

With it's low price tag yet full music features, the Sansa Clip is one of the best values out there.

SanDisk Sansa Clip+ 8 GB MP3 Player (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
SanDisk Sansa Clip+ 8 GB MP3 Player (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)

The SanDisk Sansa Clip has bee around for quite a while, and this iteration is better yet. This is where low price meets quality function. A price lower than that of the Clip will leave you wanting more, but SanDisk delivers great quality here at this price point.

The Clip makes a great player for kids or those who just want to bring their music along without breaking the bank. It will hold up to 2000 songs but includes a memory slot, so you can bring along thousands more. The sound quality is excellent and the size is small enough to clip it on and go about your day. This is a great music player for a workout.

The Sansa Clip also has a digital FM tuner so you can listen to the radio, and save your favorite stations in preset for easy changing. The battery lasts for up to 15 hours, so you can go ahead and run a marathon if you like and your tunes will be there for you.


You Have Great MP3 Alternatives

Don't feel that you must shop for an iPod. You have great options. We love the Samsung for smart phone features without the cost, the Walkman for a few extras with a lower price, and the Clip for a low-priced and simple MP3 player. All offer quality sound and a great price as compared to their Apple competitors.

Other MP3 Options at Amazon

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What do you love about your MP3?

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