Samsung YP-P2 8GB MP3 Player Review

Sound Quality

Although I don’t consider myself an ‘audiophile’, sound quality is nonetheless important to me. On this front, the Samsung P2 impresses. Sound quality is top notch and the additional sound customization features provided by Samsung is impressive. There is a 7 band EQ and many EQ presets, which Samsung calls its 2nd generation Digital Natural Sound engine (DNSe 2.0). Furthermore, two options, ‘Clarity’ and ‘Street Mode’ can be set. Enabling Street Mode punches out the mids and highs a bit more, so is useful in situations such as in a car or plane, where lower frequency ambient noise may drown out vocals. Clarity doesn’t really boost high-frequency volume, but seems to instead (as the name would imply) clear ‘fuzz’ around high frequencies. It was especially noticeable when used while listening to some vocal jazz. It did an admirable job of brightening up Mr. Buble’s voice.

I typically don’t like using EQ, but Samsung’s DNSe 2.0 is extremely nice. For example, playing classical music with DNSe set to the ‘concert hall’ preset really does a good job at recreating the effect – in essence by adding just the right amount of reverb. You can get a feel for what these settings entail over at the Samsung site (samsungplay.com). There is also one ‘User’ preset, that allows a customized EQ, bass boost, and ‘3D’ levels to be saved. One thing I’d like to see added to the firmware is the ability to set a specific DNSe preset to each genre of music. This would minimize the need to switch the DNSe setting for differing styles of music.

Samsung P2

The device can push a lot of sound. Anything above the midway point on the volume scale becomes quite uncomfortable with the Creative EP630’s or JVC ‘Marshmallows’ in-ear headphones I typically use. The Samsung P2’s amplifier produces the same level of sound from computer speakers at 15/30 (50%) as the iPod at 75-80% volume. This should allow the device to drive higher impedance speakers/headphones without resorting to an external amplifier.

Of all the MP3 players I’ve owned, this one has, by far, the best audio quality I’ve heard. Very impressive Samsung!

Videos

Video format support is something that is severely lacking with the Samsung P2. I can usually deal with the limited format support by many MP3 players. After all, almost my entire music collection is in MP3 format, and what MP3 player doesn’t support that? Lots of people clamor for OGG Vorbis or FLAC or whatever support, but I’m not one to join in. However, I know for certain my video media is not in WMV or Samsung’s SVI format. As a result, I have to re-encode all of it from DivX/Xvid to something supported, which is both time consuming and tedious. What it means is that the device will get little use as a video player by me. I wasn’t planning on using it as a video player, but the fact that I can’t easily use it on the fly means it has even less use as one.

However, if you are interested in playing videos on it, make sure it’s in WMV format (chances are, none of your media will be in SVI format to begin with). Samsung bundles a video converter with its Samsung Media Studio; however the converter has very limited compatibility with Divx and Xvid media. None of my videos were able to be converted to work on the P2. Else, you can use one of many free video converters. I tested out one called BADAK that converted videos to work on the Samsung P2 flawlessly.

Battery Life

Samsung is being very aggressive with their rated battery run time of 30-35 hours in music mode. My testing showed that around 25.5 hours of audio playback is possible if the volume is set to 10/30, Bluetooth is disabled, and the display is rarely used. More normal usage of the player (more screen usage) yields around 23-24 hours of continuous music playback. While this is nowhere near Samsung’s advertised runtime, it does compare rather favorably to the iPod Touch, which is only rated at 22 hours of battery life while playing music.

Since no wall charger ships with the device (although Samsung cell phone chargers should work) the only option by default is to charge through USB. With my desktop, the player can be charged even if the computer is turned off. With my laptop (Dell XPS M1330), there is no such capability. The player only charges while the computer is turned on. It will not charge with the laptop in sleep mode either. Charging from USB takes a substantial amount of time, somewhere in the range of 4 hours to charge from completely empty to completely full.

COMMENTS

25 Replies to “Samsung YP-P2 8GB MP3 Player Review”

  1. Great review, as always. I’m thinking of picking up a new MP3 player when I’m visiting Rushan for his ordination later this year, and I’ll definitely check this out (possibly the 4GB as I don’t watch videos and I always have trouble filling more than 2GB).

    What other ones were you considering?

  2. I wrote about a bunch of different MP3 players and what I (quickly) thought of them when I was deciding. You can read it here.

    I’d take a hard look at the Samsung T10 if I were you.

  3. I’m going to say that iPod sales growth is slowing (but not down year-to-year) mainly because everyone already seems to own one. It’s almost like a disease now that everyone has.

  4. Then why aren’t we (as good capitalist consumers) buying second, third, fourth or twentieth ipods? You’re not saying that people can have enough stuff….are you Rene?

  5. Because unless it breaks most people don’t go around buying a new iPod every week for kicks. Being capitalist consumers doesn’t always equate to frivolous spending. If you already own one, and its not broken, then why get another? It’s like anything, TVs, cars, steroes. If the newest technology isn’t miles better than what you have, why spend the money?

  6. Rene, I agree with you. The same thought actually hit me when I looked around my study period, and everyone listening to music was listening to it on an Ipod. And there were a lot of people listening to music. With the prices on the simpler models so low, I think most people who would ever buy them have already done so. And I think Nick was joking. Or being sarcastically cynical.

    The T10 actually seems like the right player for me. Let’s hope my problems with Samsung (see YP-Z5) won’t continue with this. Forgive my ignorance, but what does bluetooth in an MP3 player do?

  7. Ah, but Rene, I think you’d be surprised at just how many people have multiple iPods – they have a 4th gen, but hey, that iPod touch is awfully cool. I’m sure my comment will be accused of being stereotypical, and it is, but Apple fans can get especially caught up in the hype. A broken iPod is hardly the most common reason for upgrading. Just for the sake of it and keeping ‘with the trend/times’ are often just as good reasons in their minds (and sometimes, shamefully, in my mind as well).

    Will – Samsung’s players have progressed a hell of a long way since then. I remember fiddling around with that Z5 and it sure was frustrating. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend a Sammy nowadays.

    As for Bluetooth, the most common use is probably Bluetooth headphones (ah, the wonders of wireless) but a cool feature of some of the new Samsungs is the cellphone pairing capabilities. I’m actually writing something about it, but in short, you pair it with your Bluetooth-enabled cellphone and you can make and take calls with your MP3 player. You’ll be listening to music and it’ll fade out and indicate an incoming call. No need to take off the headphones and swap devices.

    I don’t foresee myself using it much, but it could be useful if you have earbuds stuffed in your head all day…

  8. Excellent review, particularly the information regarding video formats and the Badak converting freeware. If you have details of the settings used in Badak to convert to a working format it would help.

  9. I have a problem connecting my samsung p2 with the computer,I have windows xp sp.2 but when i connect it,nothing shows on,even there is no like a new hard drive??

  10. Veljko – Check the player when you connect it to your computer. Does it show that it’s connected or does it not recognize that fact at all? Windows XP should have automatically installed the mass transfer drivers for you.

  11. I can’t understand all the hype about IPOD. I’ve got Sansa Clip mp3 player and it beats IPOD shuffle in terms of cost and quality. I think there’s a lot of alternatives available like this samsung player you’ve got reviewed. Great review anyway!

  12. i got one and i loved it
    its the best thing i have ever bought i think
    then one day i go to use it and i have no screen
    its just black but i still got music playing
    is there anything i can do about it?
    i have tried reseting it a number of times and still wont work?
    does anyone no what to do?

  13. yeah pretty nice gadget..pushes the competition..sad that samsung sort of doesn’t make it clear that the bluetooth feature wont work with the FM radio..the earbud wire is needed for an antenna..That info would not of stopped my from buying the one I bought,,that said, I think its a bit of a call for buyer to beware..still..nice gizmo though..all the same..I suppose

  14. Right now in Canada, the mp3 is selling for $99.00CA – should I get it, or save my money for other new technology? Because it sounds great and everything, but it does have some bugs I may not be able to be patient about (I have the T10, and sometimes its so sensitive i end up restarting the song than going to the next one).
    Please answer back!

  15. Hey uh I have a problem. Mine doesn’t seem to be charging at all. Whenever I connect it to try to charge it it only takes about 7 minutes for it to show the green light; but whenever I disconnect it, the bars are not full D: plus when I’m listening to music it turns off by itself and says “turns off due to low battery life” in red letters

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