Creative Zen X-Fi Style 16GB review

A multi-media portable, the Creative Zen X-Fi Style 16GB is very likeable and affordable Tested at £100

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

It’s no sonic thriller, but the Creative is likeable and affordable


  • +

    Fun, fairly robust design

  • +

    good format support

  • +

    smooth sound and crisp pictures


  • -

    Lacks the sonic insight of the best

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

At £100 for 16GB, the Creative is a multi-media portable with a very impressive pound-to-memory ratio.

With good video format support, FM radio, and a built-in mic and speaker, it ticks all the spec boxes, too.

As well as handling the free downloads from BBC iPlayer, the Creative will play AVI video files without conversion. It looks great, with very decent detail and bright, natural colours.

For sound, though, you should swap-out the bundled headphones as a matter of urgency, and avoid the daft ‘Crystaliser' and ‘Expand' settings.

Play hi-res files (FLAC and WAV are supported) and you'll get decent weight and solidity, though others are more detailed.

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What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

Read more about how we test