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Samsung YP-P3 8GB review




  • Recommended by TR

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Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB
  • Samsung YP-P3 8GB


Our Score:


Towards the end of last year I was beginning to feel a little sorry for Samsung; the company was producing its best MP3 and media players ever, and yet it still seemed to be coming second best in every category. The YP-U4 was a lovely little compact audio player, but couldn't match the Sandisk Sansa Clip for sound quality or value. The YP-Q1, meanwhile, was a great sounding, versatile PMP, but was pipped to the post by the better sounding Sony NWZ-S639F. The YP-P2 was another solid effort, but only as a sort of cut-down alternative to the iPod touch. When we were dishing out points and prizes, Samsung kept on getting A for effort but never had the performance to match.

Within minutes of clapping eyes on the YP-P3, I had hopes that this new touchscreen player might be the device to turn that sorry situation around.

I don't like to think I'm superficial, but it helps that the design is both attractive and highly functional. The YP-P3 feels like a halfway house between the stripped-back cool of the iPod touch or Cowon S9 with the rugged, slim-line feel of the S-series Sony Walkmans. At 53 x 102mm and just shy of 10mm thick it's not an awful lot larger than Sony's player, and what additional size is present is compensated for by the screen. This occupies the majority of the front panel, covered by a sheet of glass, and the rest of the construction is predominantly die-cast metal.

Whereas the touch feels like it needs a little TLC if it's to make it through the working day, the YP-P3 feels tough enough to cope with anything bar some rough treatment to the front. Controls are limited to a power button and volume controls on the top, with the former doubling as a lock/unlock toggle, and the only other things breaking up the sleek lines are the headphone socket, a miniscule reset switch and Samsung's proprietary USB connector on the bottom.

The YP-P2 was Samsung's first stab at building a touch-based GUI for a PMP, and the YP-P3 shows clear signs that the company is learning, or possibly even drawing on its experience with the Pixon and Tocco mobile phones. The core functions are handled with a fairly straightforward grid of icons, but as with the aforementioned camera phones, Samsung has gone big on the idea of widgets: useful or entertaining applets you can drag out anywhere you like on the YP-P3's desktop.

Examples include a simple memo application, analogue and digital clocks, a photo slideshow, a light-bulb which acts as a brightness control and a little butterfly that flitters around the screen. If things get crowded - and they will - you can assign different widgets to different screens and flick between them at will. None of the examples are particularly sophisticated, and many aren't more than a novelty, but they certainly let you know that this isn't just another PMP.

You get the same feeling from the touchscreen interface. Like the YP-P2 it relies on a system of taps and gestures. Touching the lower part of the screen during music playback, for instance, brings up the transport and navigation controls. Vertical menus and lists are navigated by dragging your finger up and down, while a brusque flick of the finger up and down on the screen activates the volume control. Samsung has made the interface less fussy in terms of context-sensitive screen zones and the like, and usability is better for it.


March 8, 2009, 5:30 am

With this player supporting Ogg and FLAC, and with the great sound quality, Sony better do something pretty damn special to win my money. But as we already know, no FLAC or Ogg support on the upcoming touchscreen Walkman, what a damn shame!


March 8, 2009, 7:55 am

Dedicated MP3 players are so 2006.


March 8, 2009, 10:33 pm

Nice review and a nice player. A couple of issues, the first paragraph refers to the P3 at one point I believe you infact meant P2. On the second page you say the P2 does not have native voice recording, the mic is on the bottom next to the dock connector and it infact does have voice recording and can even double as a handsfree kit.


March 9, 2009, 12:10 am

I personally prefer the Cowon for it's features, but I think the price of the P3 could be it's best point. The 16GB Cowon costs ~𧶀, and with the 16GB P3 going for 𧵎 it may just become quite popular (similar to how the LG Cookie has, as an alternative to the comparative Apple product but 1/2 the price with almost as many features).

Jawad Mateen

March 9, 2009, 12:52 am

Stu is one of those 'Trusted Reviews' reviewers you can rely on if you are looking to buy a product or a software and really need a good look into the pros and cons and standing in the market of that. Again, his ratings at the top follow what he actually says in the text below. But then he went on to say at the end what I dreaded the most and that was to compare the P3 with iPod Touch. Sighhh...

Every other guy reviewing an mp3 player does that. Like the iPod Touch is some kind of a benchmark by which all mp3 plyers are to be judged. But what really irritates me is that they all just don't come out and say once and for all that the iPod Touch is 'The' mp3 player (it isn't, of course) and be done with it. No... they cannot make this statement for so many reasons that we all know and I'm not even going to count one of them here (If you are reading this comment then it means you are a techy guy of some sorts and know what am I talking about here). So what they resort to is the oh so revered UI of iPod Touch, Mobile Safari, email, WiFi (Sync), (lame) games, and... err, thats it!Okkk... Are these really the features we are looking for when buying a dedicated mp3 player. I bet 90 percent of the people will say 'Nahhh'.

In this day and age, a 'proper' mp3 player buyer is the one who is passionate about music, the quality of it, the choices allowed by the device and the overall durability of the product. Can anyone say with a straight face that all the above mentioned features can be found in an iPod Touch. The answer will be a big 'NO'. On one hand convergence mongers say that this is the future. Like one comment above read, "Dedicated MP3 players are so 2006". Yeah for the general public they are. Back then your music player had to be a dedicated one but now mobile phones can carry 32gb worth of music and the vast majority now uses their mobile phones as their portable music players.

My point is that one who invests at least about 200 pounds upwards for a dedicated mp3 player and a good pair of headphones must be looking for the right sound not web browsing/email (even that tied to a WLAN) and eye-candy UI. Right?

I myself have a Cowon D2 (32gb in total memory... long before the iPod Touch 32gb came out) and the sound quality is nothing short of stellar even with low bit-rate mp3 files and it trumps the iPod Touch (A friend's) in this category (The 'Real' reason why I carry an mp3 player along with my Samsung Omnia). Is the user interface comparable to the iPod Touch? Absolutely no... it decidedly looks yester year(s). It is not pretty and shiny but while looking bland and boxy (not in my eyes, personal preference) it did withstand drops and still looks as pristine as ever. Is the software as user-friendly (ha ha, ha ha...ohh it always brings tears to my eyes) as iTunes? No, I do have to do firmware updates but it allows me all kinds of music and video file types and I can use upto three different kinds of software to manage my music and media at the same time. Eco system my A**!

Go to anythingbutipod.com and thousands of Sony, Creative, Cowon, iRiver and Samsung users are testifying to these realities. I know, I know the obvious 'Haters' rants but the logic is so gigantic to ignore.

And for a pretty UI, 'Mobile' browsing experience/email, WiFi data sync and more 'Proper' and free games than an App Store can shake a stick at, I use my Mobile phone (a Samsung Omnia... Yeah it's a WinMo and a resistive touchscreen but I will buy an iPhone if I want to).

Sorry Stu... I really like your reviews (you speak my mind about games) and even this one but the mere mention of iPod being the all conquering mp3 player (It is but only in the matter of total number of units sold) totally out of context just irks me. We are the guys who live our life by tech... I mean you have a platform so use it to form a public opinion, educate the masses and stuff. I don't want to picture another individual heading for the apple website to type the text he or she wants to be carved on the back of the iPod thinking... "Hey, the techy guy said this device is 'The complete User Experience".


March 9, 2009, 1:59 am

Jawad - you're my new best friend!

Hamish Campbell

March 9, 2009, 1:06 pm

Bet you that individual would still be happier with the Touch than this regardless of what you told them about sound quality.


March 9, 2009, 1:14 pm

Hi Jawad (and everyone else).

I brought in the iPod Touch partly because it's impossible to review a touchscreen MP3 player without covering it - not because I think it's the ultimate PMP, but because it is still widely seen as the market leader. I certainly didn't intend to imply that the YP-P3 is a weaker product - merely that the Touch does more, but also costs more. I hope that clarifies things. For the record, I'm not in any way an Apple stalwart, and I'm happy to see products that take on and comprehensively trump the Apple competition. My point is that the YP-P3 sits somewhere between straight PMPs like the Sony S-Series and products like the iPod Touch, and covers that niche brilliantly. Hence the Recommended award.

Jawad Mateen

March 9, 2009, 7:40 pm

Hey there Stu and yeah... to everyone especially that guy up there to whom I'm his new best friend.

First thing(s) first... totally agree with you there that a) You are not an Apple stalwart and b)The recommended award so rightfully given but here's the catch... I know that you know most other mp3 players wipe the floor with the Apple iPod when it comes to sound quality. Please make a big deal of it because that's what really matters in a DAP, isn't it? Do mention Apple's persistence on limiting the options available for it's users. One example... we all know that Apple uses proprietary inserts on the iPod but I have never ever read a single reviewer pointing this out as a bad thing or not even as 'not so convenient'. While on the other hand if another manufacturer does that (proprietary inserts) a big deal is made out of it as not being helpful and handy for the end user.

Here's another one... Drag & Drop is now deemed the ultimate solution for putting your media onto your device. Right? But Apple's iTunes software not just means being tied to it, it's practically bondage. Yet it is always mentioned as a user-friendly eco-system. Why? Some will mention that terrible brand-specific softwares like Sony's Sonic Stage were the first reason why people turned to iTunes. Ok but that was way back. Times have changed now. Drag & Drop is the way and hold it up as being a major advantage for any PMP to have.

And just on this note... Has anyone 'Used' Zune 3.0 lately. That's what you call a proper eco-system so beautifully done. The bugs have been fixed and at the moment this 'Is' the music-management software to have on your PC. Download it for free and have a go at it yourself even if you don't have a Zune player. Satisfaction Guaranteed. You will not believe your eyes how cool it looks and the 'Now playing' screen simply takes the breath away (Given you've got album art for your records). Trust me on this. And don't start to fry me just yet any of you Apple fanboys out there for even mentioning Zune. You Sirs... just keep using iTunes to transfer music to your iPods but take one look at Zune 3.0 and you will never want to go back (Unless you use OS X, of course).

Coming back to my original post, Yes the iPod Touch does more than what is really required from a PMP in a similar manner a toaster that can pick out the raisins from the muesli and put them in 'Fruit Brute' in the morning just so you love it that way and have the eggs fried exactly to your liking but burns the toasts every single time. The 'real' reason it was boughtin the first place. Yeah I know... a dumb example but it's no more daft than your supposed mp3 player saving you the time to physically connect it to your computer to transfer data, have you browse on its (tiny) screen while you can enjoy the same experience on a much bigger screen of your computer using the same WLAN, let you play games that you can't really play in a real way (tilting the screen for controls, how fun... just like people thinking of getting real exercise on a Wii Fit) but churns out horrible sound quality every time you want to listen to an actual song. Wow. This is what you really call 'doing more'? Then save me the favour(s).

Stu, I was never out to make a point to you. You know what's what. But be really clear about the pros and cons of every product in your reviews. Reviewing an iPod, give it a 5 or 6 in the sound quality category knowing that it doesn't deserve more while not fearing a law suite from Apple or one of your colleagues not speaking to you for a couple of days. On the other hand, a Cowon player deserves a perfect 10 for sound quality because you know that here and now, on the go music can't get any better than this.

'With great power, comes great responsibility', and you are responsible for at least speaking your mind out on a great platform like 'Trusted Reviews' without fearing the backlash from whoever.

So, compare the next mp3 player you review to... let's say a Sony Walkman or a true legend like the Cowon D2 for the sheer quality of sound. Let's leave the iPod vs Zune cat-fight (Both eco-system Zealots)in the States and we all know who the obvious winner is.

Of course it's the iPod... what did you think?... Jeez.

P.S. No ipods were bashed during the writing of this post by me or by anyone else (including Steve Balmer).


March 9, 2009, 8:58 pm

"Has anyone 'Used' Zune 3.0 lately."

I own a Zune 120 and absolutely love it! You can find more of my thoughts here http://www.trustedreviews.c....

But as you say, the software is beautiful to look at and the now playing screen is really artwork. It's a little slow and buggy though...


March 9, 2009, 10:06 pm

Seriously, Jawad, keep your comment length sensible. Dragging a point out to be fifteen paragraphs long doesn't make it anymore correct.

Fine, iPods don't sound as good as some alternatives and iTunes is a bit of a pain in the backside but essentially that's all there is to it. iPods still sound good enough for the vast majority of people and, you know what, I haven't become diseased and had limbs fall off or caused a third world war by using iTunes. It's just a minor inconvenience for certain things but is in fact quite good for others.

What I will concede is that the iPod Touch is a slightly odd product because it costs so much that you might as well get an iPhone and enjoy a true mobile multimedia experience. I, for one, use my notebook when round the house so the idea of something that only works on Wi-Fi is somewhat moot. In this regard, the primary judgement criteria for a none 'mobile' PMP should be a balance between sound quality, video quality, format support, battery life, etc. And on all these the iPod Touch falls behind the competition.


March 9, 2009, 10:26 pm

"Seriously, Jawad, keep your comment length sensible. Dragging a point out to be fifteen paragraphs long doesn't make it anymore correct."

Fifteen paragraphs? I only see a couple of blocks of text that I could barely navigate through!

Jawad Mateen

March 10, 2009, 1:14 am

Okkk... First of all dude, if you were trying to be sarcastic by saying "Dragging a point out to be fifteen paragraphs long doesn't make it anymore correct." while knowing the 'comment' wasn't exactly that long, it sounded a bit... Sorry I'm lost for words here. What's the significance of 'fifteen'? I mean why fifteen? Go the whole length and actually say something really sarcastic so it could make your line that little bit like a good one-liner. What you actually said was right though, totally. But since you were serious so why not keep it real like 'Ohmz' pointed out above, it is fifteen paragraphs... NOT!!!

And you guys have named it 'Comments' but really the comments section really work out as forums on 'Trusted Reviews' where people just speak their minds out. And you should only see some of the comments on some proper forums. The extraordinary lengths some users go to prove a point is just amazing (especially, comic book forums). And it may sound lame to some but shouldn't at least to you guys that I am myself a forums guy... (Yeah, I said that) who just went crazy back there so my apologies if the length of my post annoyed you.

"... or caused a third world war by using iTunes."?

That Sir is giving way too much credit to iTunes. It ain't that smart.


March 10, 2009, 1:55 am

Unfortunately, the Internet is not the place for dissertation-length blocks of prose. You need succinct, well made points if you want to get your point heard at all. Most people are lazy and can't be bothered to read all that. I know I didn't, I have better things to be doing...


March 10, 2009, 4:53 am

Honestly, i read the first and last lines of Jawad's impressive blocks of text...wheras every other comment on this page i at least skimmed properly. An impromptu forum it may be, but you could probably have got across the same point in a few points without the ranting interludes:

ALL mp3 players will be compared against the most popular in their class, and one which finds a good balance of sound quality and features.

This particular one is touch screen, with the most popular in its class (deserved or not) being the ipod touch, with the sony being one with excellent sound quality and balanced features for a reasonable cost.

The summary suggests this is in the middle, which seems completely valid.

G'night all


March 14, 2009, 10:25 pm

Stu: I've read elsewhere that there are underground maps included as standard with the YP-P3: are they included on the model you reviewed?

It's a minor point but it could sway me to get this over the Sony X series... The YP-P3 currently has the edge on price but lack of wi-fi may cost it unless the extra features make it better value.

simon jackson

April 15, 2009, 9:35 pm

FYI, according to the guys over at AVForums, serious audiophiles actually use either: an iPod classic for it's line-out, into a seperate headphone amp (to avoid using the amp in the player); a dock to get at the digital content directly; or an old school iriver H120 with an optical out, into a decoder and amp ;) For most players/users, we're talking about personal preference rather than fact (check out the discontinuity between trustedreviews and anythingbutipod when it comes to sandisk SQ). Point being: what makes the difference for headphone-out SQ is headphones, not so much the player. Stick some decent cans or canal phones into any of the high end players, and you'll get a decent result.


April 29, 2009, 11:27 pm

Great review! I have an iPod touch myself and really can't see myself enjoying an interface which "waits" for you to make the gesture before doing something... Although iTunes really is annoying sometimes and FLAC support would be nice.

PS: I like your new hairstyle, Ed - it suits you.


April 30, 2009, 2:06 pm

Why thank you.

Nick Upjohn 1

May 20, 2009, 12:45 am

if you want to fix all the touch problems, follow this link and get the firmware update. its a massive massive improvement so go get it!!!


Nick Upjohn

July 27, 2009, 7:19 pm

Theres a new firmware out, ignore my previous post follow this link and click on YP-P3 firmware (MTP)(VER.2.14) and download the file.



April 9, 2010, 3:46 pm

The P3 plays FLAC files and sounds very good... BUT it does NOT support FLAC tags so you will not be able to select your tunes by Album, Artist, Genre, Track Title or even Track Number and you will see no album art. All you will get is a very long list of file names. Absolute pants!

Further, the included Emodio software will silently install a windows component called 'contentSAFER for Winmax'. This piece of malware does not play nice with iTunes and completely trashed my Squeezebox Server installation. What's worse, it cannot be uninstalled in the usual way. You have to find and delete its files and then find and delete its registry entries (not for the fainthearted). Apparently this malware is also installed with Samsung phones. Thanks Samsung. You are now on my blacklist.

I am returning my P3.

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