Saturday, May 28, 2005

Whats Up?

I'm working on an incredibly boring thing this weekend, which leaves plenty of time for my head to wonder. I'm looking forward to getting the HDD to replace on the iPod. I've been relying on borrowed iPods to do comparisons recently and that is frankly tempting fate, recalling what became of my previous iPods.

I have no idea how much the Apple specific ROM of the iPod-installed Toshiba HDD's will hinder the replacement. I've heard different things from different people, so let's find out conclusively next week.

So what's passed through chez bangraman since last posts?
iRiver: H320/iFP-lots, Sony: HD5 / NW-Elots (the new ones with the OLED displays) / RH10/DH10 Hi-MD's, Creative Muvo V200, and more HTPC parts than you can shake a motherboard at. In some cases it's been a quick look, a quicker writeup to meet deadlines, then out of the door again.

The Creative Muvo V200 is notable, because of all the flash players I was looking at this time around, it was the only one which didn't somehow get in my face. By that, I mean impede something I wanted to do on a daily basis. Choosing music and operating it is dead simple, unlike iRiver. Loading it is fast and simple, unlike iRiver (whether flashed with UMS or Manager, all the iRivers were significantly slower... like a *lot*.) and Sony (which were glacial in comparison). Sound is good, with the Sonys practically as good while the iRivers trailed a little. There are issues (poor quality recording, slightly iffy EQ in terms of what it does to the sound etc) but less that got in my way in general use than the other players I was looking at this time around. Plus of course, it has a built in USB jack. In many ways, compared to the Sony and iRiver players it's distinctly low-tech. But it's priced right and more importantly, works really well.

The Sony Flash players are cool looking and really well made, and do have excellent battery capabilities (and also sound pretty good too) but they're functionally a bit compromised. There's the Sonicstage thing which is a restriction on it's own, but the USB transfer itself is painfully slow compared to Creative and to a lesser extent the iRiver players. Still, it's a nice looking thing. It's generally well engineered and the controls are easy to use, but it's not as easy to control as the Creative. Also, the high-tech OLED display is virtually invisible in many daylight conditions. Indoors it's fine.

E400-series flash player under overcast skies, showing album/artist information.

The Karma is being fixed / replaced again (just a week after opening the previous replacement!), the Sony HD3 is collecting dust, and the H320 is pending an in-depth sonic comparison with the iPod.

I'm about two thirds of the way through the long delayed Qualia 010 review. I've given up with the HD3 review as there's not much point now and also because I don't think it's that great :p

1 comment:

Jaron aka Bananatree said...

Dear Mr. Bangra:

I enjoy how you scoff at the fact that thousands of dollars in free audio equipment passes through your possesion on a seemingly weekly basis. While some covet the 300 dollar DAP or Headphones and fanboy them to their death.