A review of the Zune 2! A Look At The Past

Relevant background

We know that this is one is almost ancient now, but it is so good that it still deserves to be mentioned today. The 80GB Zune 2 by Microsoft is the second generation hard drive based player in the Zune mp3 player line. Building on popular features from the first generation Zune player such as WiFi sharing, an FM tuner, and a large display for better media viewing. The Zune 2 line launched 2 months after Apple refreshed their iPod line with the Touch and Classic.

Out of the box

After I was able to successfully find a Zune 80 (which was admittedly harder than I expected as there was a shortage) the first thing that jumped out at me was the design of the packaging. The box was very sleek and looked very appealing, with the signature orange to pink Zune gradient on the bottom.

One thing I found very interesting was Zunes decision to not include an installation CD in the box (the box was too small to fit a CD anyhow). This means after opening the box I found that in order to update and sync my new mp3 player I had to download and install the Zune software from the internet. Now for me this was not a problem at all, but I can imagine that there are people out there that don’t have access to the internet all the time to this could be a major inconvenience.

Physical Impressions

There was a lot of strong opinions about the appearance of the original Zune 30GB models. Many people really liked the refreshing difference in styling that the Zune had in comparison to the iPod, but just as many people were claiming that the Zune was the ugliest mp3 player they had seen. It seems Microsoft decided to take a safer route when they designed the look of the second generation Zune players. With a sleek matte black finish on the front and a brushed aluminum backing the Zune 80 is easily the best looking portable media player I have ever seen, really.
Zune red
The large …

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