1 Gigabyte, 2 Gigabytes, 3 Gigabytes More

Mp3 players have taken the audio industry by storm. Mp3 player sales in 2006 were estimated at $3.3 million and are expected to rise in 2007. The big companies like Apple and Microsoft are scrambling to keep their products on top as more and more newcomers to the mp3 world try to get in on the profits by marketing their own brand of mp3 players.

Some popular brands already on the market are: Apple, Microsoft, Creative Labs, iRiver and SanDisc. An internet search for mp3 players can boggle the mind with the brands, prices, reviews, features and accessories available. One of the most important features to consider in an mp3 player is storage space. The amount of storage on an mp3 player is advertised in GB or MB.

Now for the math lesson

A 1 GB mp3 player has one gigabyte of storage which is equal to 1024 megabytes- abbreviated MB. One megabyte is equal to 1,048,576 bytes and a byte is equal to eight bits. Bit is a combination of two words: binary and digit. A bit is defined as the smallest unit of information in a media storage device and is represented as a 0 or 1. Are you confused yet? Remember 'The Matrix'? The characters could read that code of zeros and ones at a glance and form a picture in their minds. That is essentially what a computer or mp3 player does and then passes that "picture" on to you in the form of your favorite song or audio book.

Choosing a byte

Choosing how many megabytes or gigabytes you will need in an mp3 player depends on what you are going to store and how much. An mp3 player can be used to store audio books for listening on the go. Audio book lovers may require a higher level of storage. The most popular use of mp3 players is listening to music. Choosing a storage size for music files depends mainly on how many songs you want to store on your mp3 player. A 1 GB mp3 player is a good choice for anyone who is unsure about how much storage will be necessary. Most 1GB mp3 players hold about 240 songs at an average song length of four minutes.

A 1GB mp3 player may cost $80 to $180, depending on the brand and features desired. A review of available brands is easily found online to help you choose. If you prefer the good old fashioned, face to face shopping approach, most sales persons in your local electronics store can answer any lingering questions you might have.

While mp3 players are available with storage sizes of mere megabytes to 60GB and above, the 1GB mp3 player is a good starting point for the music enthusiast.