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Sony stick Walkman offers '3hr play from 3min charge'

by Bob Crabtree on 18 April 2006, 11:44

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Sony USB Stick player - all colours

Sony's latest Walkman is a multi-format, USB stick player due to arrive at the end of April in three capacities (512MB, 1GB, 2GB) and claimed to offer three hours' battery life from a three-minute quick charge.

The E-series player is offered in six colours (pink, blue, silver, violet, black, and lime green) and in versions with FM radio - but only on 512MB and 1GB models.

As well as playing MP3s, the unit handles non-copy-protected WMAs and files in Sony's own ATRAC format. The Lithium-ion battery's claimed playback time is impressive - around 28 hours for ATRAC and 27 hours for MP3. Players come with the latest version of SonicStage - V3.4 - said to provide easy music management and transfer of tracks.

Although Sony hasn't revealed pricing, a selection of 1GB and 2GB models are available for pre-ordering on its own on-line store. VAT-inclusive prices there range from £119 for a 1GB  pink model with tuner (NWE003FPC.CEW) to £79 for pink, black or violet 1GB models without. A 2GB model in lime green  (NWE005G.CEW) - radio's not an option here, remember - sits in the middle at £99.01.


Sony USB Stick Walkman - black

The players are around 79mm in length and weigh about 25g. They're said to have direct USB connectivity with fast transfer speeds and to feature a bright and clear one-line dot matrix organic LED display.

Sony says that storage capacity, using ATRAC at a datarate of 48kbps, is up to 90 CDs for the 2GB model, 45 CDs for 1GB and 22 CDs for the 512MB.


Walkman USB Stick player armband case

Each player comes with a set of headphones but Sony will at launch time be offering a selection of optional extras - a neck strap headphone set, a protective case and an armband case for joggers (and posers).

Thoughts? Let us know over in the HEXUS.community.



HEXUS Forums :: 12 Comments

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So basically for all intents and purposes an Ipod shuffle with a few extra features which probably aren't really important anyway.

I've been using my shuffle for a year and have not once had to need to charge it within 5 minutes in an “emergency”. It's constantly partially charged and the battery indicator has never gone below green (good baterry life) despite the fact I seem to hardly ever connect it for charging.

FM radio ….does anyone actually use the radio function on an mp3 player?

Sony's own ATRAC format ….does anyone actually use that?!

I can't even be arsed to auto create ACC files when transferring to my shuffle….takes 3 times as long to transfer! …I just bought the Anapod software so I can drag and drop mp3 files in about 3 minutes flat.

Now what someone really needs to develop is a base mp3 player that'll accept SD/duo memory cards…that could be interesting!
No screen……pointless.

Its quite amazing that the company that invented the Walkman, created huge brand value with the likes of Trinitron and a consumer association with high quality products, can drop the ball so badly when it comes to MP3 players.

Their strategy of trying to create proprietory formats such as ATRAC, Blu-Ray etc is a big big mistake in my view. Rootkits and DRM are just the icing on the cake….
davidstone28
No screen……pointless.

Its quite amazing that the company that invented the Walkman, created huge brand value with the likes of Trinitron and a consumer association with high quality products, can drop the ball so badly when it comes to MP3 players.

Their strategy of trying to create proprietory formats such as ATRAC, Blu-Ray etc is a big big mistake in my view. Rootkits and DRM are just the icing on the cake….

Ahh, more unbased Sony bashing..

Well, given that the ipod shuffle seems to sell without having a screen, I can clearly see why Sony did the same. Most of it's other MP3 players do the job no more or less worse that anything else on the market, and certainly the iPods all have their own faults. Yes, the first generation of digital music players did require you to convert mp3's to ATRAC, but that's not been the case in a very long time now.

Blu-ray is not a proprietory format, it is maintained by the BDA (Blu-Ray Disc Association), which is comprised many different hardware manufacturers (Including: Apple, Dell, Hitachi, HP, JVC, LG, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, TDK and Thomson). It's no more a proprietory format than DVD is/was.

ATRAC was an offshoot from the MiniDisc, which was needed at the time to compress the information on an audio cd due to it's smaller size, Sony just continue to support it (is that such a bad thing?).

Before you even start on MiniDisc, that has it's own place at the time, when there was the need to replace the humble of compact cassette tape, the other format was the DCC, which didn't even enjoy the same success that MiniDisc did (admittedly mostly in Japan/Asia).

DRM is in pretty much everything regardless of manufacturer, and has been for a long time (even back in the VHS days which gave you nothing but snow if you attempted to copy a pre-recorded video using two tape decks).

Sony did not create the rootkit fiasco, that was from a 3rd party supplier, although to be fair, Sony didn't handle it in the best way to start with.
Well these look nice. FM stereo's a good one IMO and as long as the shuffle function does the shuffling right I'd be happy. My ipods on a continual shuffle anyway

These look nice but Sony's pricepoints usually put me off a bit.

And AAC saves a fair amount of space on my ipod plus my PC processes those buggers pretty fast anyway :)
Wow amazing, the battery lasts forever

No wonder it has no screen :\ If it had a screen it wouldnt be half as impressive, I know, lets take out the headphone socket and get 4 hours playback from a 3 hour charge, people will deinfutly want that