I have had my Rio since they first came out and have had no problems. It gets daily use and has seen many drops and lots of travel. I got 23 hours when new, now more like 15+.
I have not found a replacement battery yet but will post when I do.I found the company but not a distribution source.Hard Drive Upgrade
If you are going to replace your hard drive because of the issues you mentioned, you might be interested in what I just did:
I just (today) upgraded my drive because the 5GB was not enough. I love the Rio simple interface and wanted more space so I took a chance and bought an 8GB Seagate drive. I just finished installing it and it works great. Upgrade procedure:
0. Buy the drive
I Used Seagate ST1.2 Model: ST68022CF
I got the certified repaired drive for about $35 at digitalet.com. I figure if it dies, I have music backed up anyway and it was cheap.I didn't want to spend much on a test. I will now look for larger capacity drives to see if they work as well since I like the Rio form factor so much.
I purchased the drive here:
Digitalet Item #42399184
8GB Seagate ST1 Compact Flash CompactFlash CF II Card
Inventory SKU: DMC-ST68022CF-R
1. Offload music
... from existing 5GB Drive. I simply used Windows Explorer and dragged the entire Music directory on the Rio to my laptop HDD. This preserved the music in folders which I like.2. Open the case
I found instructions somewhere on web but cannot remember where. At the end of the day, it is an exercise in patience and feel. There are 4 clips that hold the back cover to the unit. Use 2 small flat ***** drivers or a thin metal blade.3. Remove existing drive
Remove the drive from leaving the cable that goes from the board to the drive attached tothe board (you can remove it but I wouldn't). The end of the cable has traditional pins that mate to a CF card so be careful not to damage them as you remove the cable.4. Install new drive
Being careful not to damage the pins.5. Turn on the power and Flash the firmware
You will see the message UPGRADER on the display .Go to the Rio support site and download the firmware. Follow the instruction on the site to upgrade the firmware. http://www.digitalnetworksna.com/support/rio/6. Reload Music
Once upgraded, the drive is formatted by the Rio and you are ready to reload your music files. There is about 7.6GB free space after the upgrade. I used the Rio Music Manager to reload the music onto my player.