I've owned a 4th gen Ipod and an ipod nano.
I lost my nano and needed to replace it.
I've always respected the reviews of sony mp3 players but was put off by sonicstage, their supposedly lousy software.
Knowing my PSP had good soundquality I went for this model with good included headphones.
Looks/build: It looks nice enough and is built well enough too. Not epic but not shabby. I was worried it would feel too light at 64grams but it is fine.
Display: The OLED screen is bright, vibrant and fast, fine to even watch video on. Resolution is fine for most needs.
Sound: This, genuinely, blew me away and made me smile like a lunatic:) You will need to sort your source material out, this thing deserves more than 128kbs, I am whacking on 320kbs to be safe. Coming from an ipod you WILL, as in GUARANTEED, hear things in your songs you have NEVER heard before. Vocals are hauntingly present, like you are being sung to, directly into your brain!
Bass is fairly tight and well balanced. If you are an out and out bass freak then perhaps look elsewhere, for those that appreciate balance it is great.
Noise cancelling: Tested this next to the kitchen extrator fan:) it really does work. tried it on the tube and it quietened things by 70% i'd say, it's really nice.
Software: Plug it in, drag files or videos into respective folder and disconnect again. It just works. Fast transfer rates too, brilliant.
Battery life: Not sure yet as had it not very long, but i'm sure it'll put out a respectible 20hrs, maybe more.
Conclusion: even at the new price of 130quid you get 70quid headphones and 16gb capacity which is more than enough I think.
Have no doubts, I have owned two ipods and this OBLITERATES them. Ipods are NOT improving their sound quality 'as they go along' that's a load of BS.
Be sensible, stray from the flock and get this great piece of kit. Life is too short for dodgy music!