Top Music Phones

Top Music PhonesIf you awakened this morning thinking to yourself, “Hey, I should go out today and find the best music phone. I definitely need improved tune-age from my handheld,” would you know how to search and what to choose?

Yes, of course, you trust your ears. Keep in mind, though, every major cell phone retailer and a host of websites have hundreds of phones from which to choose. Narrowing the field before tuning in and cranking up the volume, you will save a great deal of time, wear and tear, and aggravation. Most of all, your ears will stay fresh for the ultimate sound check.

First, find a fine music phone equipped with dedicated sound hardware. In other words, find a handheld with chips custom-tailored to music’s special requirements. Samsung, for example, joined forces with audio manufacturer Bang and Olufsen to produce great-sounding phones. Sony Ericcson devoted the same kind of special attention to the sound properties in the best of its handhelds.

Then, look for “music file recognition.” Sound lives and thrives beyond MP3. In fact, the best music files come in an alphabet soup of special formats—AAC, OGG, WMA, and FLAC, for example. If your phone is not fluent in these alphabets, you forfeit the best in digital music. Of course, you will check the headphone socket, making certain your symphonic cell is set-up for 3.5mm earpieces. You cannot safely assume the headphone hook-up is a no-brainer, because several big name cell manufacturers equip their handhelds with their own exclusive sockets. You know the best player sounds barely mediocre through brand-X headphones.

Knowing the reviewers follow these guidelines as they do the difficult shopping for you, use these five picks for a head start in your search for the very best music phone for your ears. Your choices may vary.

The Top Five

5. Apple iPhone 3G SUsing most of the same technology in your iPod, the iPhone 3G S stands out as the best among the MP3-only collection of good sound phones.

Tech Fever

Credit: Tech Fever

Keeping it real, you must admit that you buy an iPhone for the apps and games, so that music quality and the machine’s usefulness as an actual phone do not significantly alter your judgment.

Still, you can find a little reassurance that you have not traded away all your sound quality in exchange for “Mario Cart.”

4. Samsung UpstageBuy it for the music. Stay for all the other great features and functions.


Credit: Geee.Darryl

Audiophiles, do not even test the phone’s single speaker, because…well, because it works okay for your voicemails. Then, switch directly to earphones and Upstage rocks your world.

Just as importantly, Upstage has stereo Bluetooth, an excellent megapixel camera, and an extended battery. Slim, sleek, and finger-friendly, upstage will please your ears without inflicting great harm on your wallet.

3. Samsung Sgh-i450In fact, the music ranks third among the reasons to like this phone.


Credit: RafeB

First, you will love the sleek-slick slider package, which warrants a gold star from fashionistas everywhere. Second, the mighty mega-pixel camera outperforms digital cameras that do not come with phones attached. All that, and then there’s the music.

With this phone, you trade Wi-Fi for the Bang and Olufsen hardware. Music lovers believe that represents a more-than-fair trade.

Tech Fever

Credit: Tech Fever

2. Motorola Zine ZN5Motorola almost had fallen off the cell phone radar until it introduced the Zine. Like the Samsung i450, Zine seduces you with the camera, but you stay for the sound. Motorola developed Zine’s camera in collaboration with Kodak, and Zine streaked to the top of the photo lovers’ popularity chart.

So, note that, while you listen to your tunes, you can take amazingly clear, crisp, very high resolution photos. You do not get a whole bunch of programming features—playlist and shuffle only. You do, however, get perfect compatibility with Windows Media Player, so that you can drag your favorites from your PC to your phone. Most importantly, you get solid bass, clear mid-range, and very sweet treble.

The music actually sounds like music. Also note that, Zine delivers a lot of talk time—325 minutes, or double the ratings on any of the phones on this list so far. Finally, if by some quirk of fate or miracle of rare device you grow weary of your own music, Zine also includes an FM radio. Did you need a weather forecast?

1. HTC Touch DiamondThe lowest priced phone on the list tops its rankings. The price tag reads at least $100 less than any other handset listed here. Touch Diamond runs on the Windows Mobile 6.1 operating system and that fact alone would disqualify it from most top 5 lists.


Credit: MintGadgets

In this case, though, the WinMo OS is the heart of Touch Diamond’s advantage. Windows Media Player 10 is built in, so that the phone supports just about every audio and video format in the musical universe. Because you can download your favorite music in the best formats, you get better quality into the player; therefore, you get better quality out.

Equipped with more memory than any other handset on this list and your happy ears will numb you to the sketchy performance in the phone’s web and Wi-Fi features.