creative zen x fi 2 review

As Creative's brand-leading MP3 player, the X-Fi 2 was always going to be a decent player. Excellent sound quality is the trump card and in general the player is easy to use.

We liked

X-Fi enhancement makes MP3s sound brilliant, while the bundled earphones are fantastic. Apple should really be doing something similar with the iPod touch. The screen is also big and bright, with a menu that's easy to find your way around in.

We've also got a pretty agreeable price here - £129 for a 16GB touchscreen player with category-leading sound quality is pretty good in our books - and it's cheaper than the original X-Fi was on launch.

We disliked

The touchscreen doesn't quite work and we reckon it's a totally unnecessary addition. It's no easier to use than the previous X-Fi, and the clunky menu system needs to be smoothed out to make it worthwhile. It's so unresponsive that it actually detracts from the experience. It's an absolute deal-breaker.

The interface can also be pretty fiddly - it takes longer to navigate to your music on the X-Fi 2 than on the iPod nano, touch and even the original Zen X-Fi. This is not acceptible in an age of intuitive design.


All in all the Creative Zen X-Fi 2 is a decent MP3 player. However, with the Zii Egg on the horizon, it's hard to recommend buying this player.

We prefer the original Zen X-Fi, mainly because it too offers X-Fi audio, and yet the interface is more zippy - the touchscreen doesn't really offer anything more than gimmickry.

That said, if you're in the market for a new player and you're looking to spend around £100, you could do a lot worse than the X-Fi 2.


Reviews Editor

James (Twitter, ) oversees the reviews we publish on the site and also edits the TV, AV, Gaming, Car Tech and Gadgets channels. He's been in the field for 13 years, and travels all over the world to attend tech shows, product launches and cult gatherings. James' opinions have been inflicted on audiences of BBC TV, Radio 5 Live, The Guardian, local radio and various magazines and he's a grizzled veteran of most tech shows but will never again to return to CeBIT (no means no).