Microsoft released its latest Zune portable media players today, garnering approval from PC World. "This latest generation of Zunes should finally provide some real competition," declared the reviewer. The magazine praised the players for high sound quality and good extra features, but pointed to improvements to the Zune software, Zune Marketplace and online environment as most significant.
In particular, PC World liked a tag feature that lets users save and share information about their favorite music. The negatives: You can't create dynamic smart playlists and you can't manually make the Zune recheck for album art it misses the first time. The 80GB Zune costs $250; the 8GB flash-based Zune is $200.