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Creative Zen Mozaic 2GB - Creative Zen Mozaic 2GB

By Jonathan Bray

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

7

Extra features are all very well, but music playback should be the focus for any device of this type, and happily the Mozaic doesn't disappoint. Support for file formats runs to MP3, WMA (including DRM), AAC, WAV and Audible formats – impressive, though the omission of FLAC and Apple Lossless support is a touch disappointing.

And sound quality is very good too. As with most Creative music players I've listened to over the years, the Mozaic's sound is balanced and detailed. There's just enough bass without it becoming overblown, plenty of clear detail at the top end, but it rarely becomes harsh or difficult to listen to. The mids – the most important aspect – are defined, substantial and punchy.

I hooked up my usual reference headphones and kicked off some listening tests with a short burst from Mozart's Requiem, which revealed admirable control. It's perhaps not the most exciting and involving sound, but you can hear all the details, without things becoming confused or muddled.

Moving onto a touch of jazz and Lisa Ekdahl's piercing vocals on Cry Me A River are delivered with acceptable confidence and clarity. The double bass, so easy to get wrong, is substantial but doesn't drown the rest of the music out, and the piano sparkling and well-defined. For a player costing under £50, there's really nothing wrong here: it presents a coherent and convincing musical picture, though it's worth noting you'll need to replace the rather average bundled earbuds to get the best out of it.

Verdict

There's not much wrong with the Mozaic. Despite the limited video functions, the rest of it is a success: it's easy to use, looks good, sounds good and is stuffed with useful extra features. But the price for this, at around £46, could be a sticking point.

The main competition, oddly enough, comes from its own stable. The 2GB version of the Creative Zen is available online for around £10 more with the same interface and feature set, but a better screen and memory expansion. If the Mozaic was a little cheaper or had memory expansion we'd have no hesitation in recommending it, but as it is the Zen is marginally the better buy.

Overall Score

7

Scores In Detail

  • Value 6
  • Sound Quality 8
  • Design 8

michael maher

January 2, 2009, 6:12 am

have the 4gb and is an excellent machine.... great sound and a little easier to use than my older zen

DONT BUY THIS

January 8, 2013, 8:54 pm

I have had two zens so far. Both died on me. The first zen product I had in my life was the mosaic above. after that I had the latest version of the zen. The first one had many problems with it, i had to fix it myself by checking online on how to fix it, apparently nearly everyone who had the zen had a similar problem. So i fixed it after 2 weeks of dread. and then the next week it totally turned of and never turned on again, I had only owned it for HALF A YEAR! I tried fixing it again and again and again. And then I made the worst mistake in my life! I bought the latest zen I think it was called a 'stylus' something like that. Died in less than a year. I didnt try fixing because it was in a different situation then the first one - it just got a whole lot worse!.

I advise no one to buy THIS , just buy a sony walkman. My sibling has had it for 5 years and has no problem (Even though they had dropped it thousands of times on concrete and other hard surfaces). I bought the latest sony walkman with stunning graphics sound qaulity, video playback, bluetooth, radio, voice recorder and a Sense me feature.

If you take my advice you will not regret it!
Atleast buy something that is worth your while. If you want a mp3 for a month buy a zen
£50 A MONTH is still considered a ripp-off

Plus the zen interface is confusing, and not clearly though of when engineered, with annoying buttons that keep making awful sounds

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