Yay, my surprise present came today! Only slightly disappointed, 'cause I was kinda hoping for some awesome geeky toy or other. And I'm not too sure how I'll use this.
It was a padded brown notebook, with Google on the front cover. There's "CASTELLI" and 67625, "MADE IN ITALY" written on the back.
It is really pretty though. Thank you, Google!
 whoops, "made in italy", not "made int italy"
...although it's a semi-broken one.
+ Off eBay, for $22 (might... get some money back. Person said it was 512, but it's actually 256. We'll see.)
+ Kingston 1GB SD card for $17.
So a 1.25 GB MP3 player (maybe 2.25, if I grab another SD card for another $15-19ish) for $40. Not too bad, methinks. It's a Rio Forge, by the way. And now I know why iPods are more expensive. The design of the iPod is by far, much better. Not only are iPods prettier, they're better designed (The moving parts in the Rio Forge are... crappy. You wonder why there's reviews on Amazon complaining about the volume buttons failing.)
The software isn't too bad though. It's kinda slow when saving / canceling settings (zomg, the useless _animated_ checkmark / 'x'), but it's got more playlist sorting options (kinda..), although there's no on-the-go playlist yet? And there's FM radio! Spiffymuch.
Hm. There was a firmware update somewhere, I should download and run..
Uh, yeah, back to the problem. This Rio Forge lacks the piece inside that lets you turn down the volume. ^^;; It's a small press button, and apparently, it's been opened before. 'cause the pieces are missing, and they can't just fall out. I think someone took them out and then sold the player. I'm thinking of moving the small metal contact bits and the two plastic bits over to the volume down bit, so I'll have volume down instead of volume up. And since it resets the volume back to 30 whenever you turn it on, that'll be the rather lousy hack to turn the volume up. I doubt I'll ever need to turn the volume down anyways.
Alternatively, I could pick up a volume adjustment connector... I think I've seen those at radio shack before...
The one final down-side. Or upside... is that it uses AAA batteries. I could use rechargeable ones, but they... tend to be crappier. We'll see. Maybe I'll pick some up at a later date.