It is possible to listen to MP3s on a generic Sony Memory Stick (blue) using a Sony Clie. Sony has tried over the years to prevent honest people from ripping songs from purchased CDs onto various MP3 compatible devices. Sony has created a type of copyright technology called Magic Gate. “MagicGate refers to the copyright protection technology used by the MagicGate Memory Stick™ and other MagicGate Memory Stick™ compatible devices. The Memory Stick™ Walkman and MagicGate Memory Stick™ work together to check the data and ensure it complies with copyright protection. If no problems are detected, the data is exchanged in encrypted form; if authentication is not passed, data cannot be exchanged or played back.” This text was extracted from Sony’s handbook for the Clie. Magic Gate technology is used at the moment by Sony on Magic Gate Memory Sticks (white). Theoretically MP3s are not supposed to work on generic Sony Memory Sticks (blue) while installed in a Sony Clie PDA. Since Sony makes most of the devices that use Memory Sticks, they can control which data can be used on those devices by limiting the Memory Sticks capabilities. Well, me being the way I am, I did not read the stupid handbook first before operating my Sony Clie N770C. So that little clause about politically correct MP3s and Magic Gate Memory Sticks did not have a chance against my ignorance. First, I stuffed all the MP3s that I could get on that poor Memory Stick. Second, I inserted the bloated Memory Stick in Clie’s slot (no, these are not sleazy innuendos). Third, I turned the media player on……nothing happened. The media player did not find the MP3s. Hmmm……I unscrewed the top of the Clie pen, turned the Clie over and injected the pointy end into the reset hole. I turned the thing back over and waited a few seconds…..turned the media player back on and…….I got this stupid grin on my face as I was waiving my middle digit to the Sony Clie handbook. Guess you did not think about that one did you……Soooony!
I bought a Clie a couple of months ago and have been having serious trouble with the copyprotection BS on it. I have had to reformat my memory stick (blue) and reinitialize the entire PDA on average once a week so that it will play my MP3's. Talked to Sony support and they said that the MP3 had to be created with the folowing settings. (98-128 kbps, 44.1 sample, joint-stereo) Well after reformatting my memory stick again and Ripping all the music off my CD's for the 3rd or 4th time I still have problems with the stupid copy protection. The thing works about 90% of the time then it decides to arbritarilly stop playing selected tracks that were working before and say that they are violating copy protection. My recomendation is NEVER buy a CLIE for playing MP3's they suck.
I appreciate the fact that you guys have all had problems with your Clie's and have my sympathy.
I have a 710 model (that has been upgraded to OS 4.1 but that doesnt matter here), and transfer regular, self-ripped MP3s onto my blue memory stick by using a USB card reader. I do this every day before i go to work, and listen to an album of music each day. Absolutely no problems.
My only advice - absolutely do not use Sonys music PC software - it's over complicated and has too much copy protection in it. I just use Winamp to listen to it on my PC and explorer (that is Windows Explorer) to transfer it.
Very simple and it works.
Good luck guys.
One additional thing though - the software on the Clie does seem to only be able to read MP3s that are encoded at 44 Khz, and (i think) above 64 kbps. Anything under that (which could be useful for stuff like audio books, to cram really loads in there) doesnt get read by the player.
Its a shame that no-one has written an alternative audio player for the Clie itself, but there you go.