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MP3 Player Buying Guide

MP3 Player Accessories
Research headphones to find the right sound for you.
Research headphones to find the right sound for you.
Michael Blann/Taxi/Getty Images

To personalize your MP3 player best, you'll want to consider the wide range of accessories available. For instance, MP3 players typically come with basic earphones, but if you're interested in experiencing high-quality sound, you might want to get better headphones. After all, you already invested in a nice player and perhaps sacrificed precious memory space in preference for high quality music files. The best way to take advantage of those things is using quality headphones, such as noise-canceling headphones.

Casing and armbands are useful for those who like to keep their players both protected and accessible. Cases are often made of hard polycarbonate frames or pliable silicone sleeves, or a combination of the two. And armbands are perfect for use during exercise routines. And if you do use it for this purpose, consider a sweat-resistant arm-band (in addition to sweat-resistant headphones).

To take advantage of the MP3 player at home, you might enjoy having a boombox with a compatible port for your player. These allow you to plug the player in and blast the music through the speakers. Similarly, clock radios with compatible ports allow you to charge your player while you sleep and can even wake you up to a music playlist of your choice.

Some people opt for car stereo systems that work with their MP3 players. If you don't want to spend a lot on a new car stereo, however, there are other options for listening in your car. For instance, FM transmitters, audio cables that connect from the player's headphone jack to the car's line-in cable (if accessible), or, if your car has a tape deck, cassette adapter are all low-cost options.

If you rely on your computer to recharge your MP3 player, this can get more difficult when you're on the go. Even if you bring a laptop, you'll might not want to siphon off it's precious battery reserve for your music. Instead, you may want to invest in a separate charger, such as a wall charger or car charger, to keep your player juiced and ready to use when you want it.

After you've chosen your player, equipped it with all the helpful accessories and loaded it with songs, all that's left is to enjoy the music. For lots more information on MP3 players, see the links on the next page.