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Sony Walkman MP3 review | Functions

Published on: Sunday, July 20th 2008                   Written by: Martijn Kooijman - Photography by: Mark Peters

Sony Walkman MP3 player review

Sony Walkman MP3 player review

Music, photo and video library

The Music Library of the Sony Walkman NWZ-A826 is straightforward, goal directed and very practical. You can sort songs by Artist, Album, Genre, Distribution Year or through folder. The albums are rendered in the correct sequence and played accordingly. Navigating through the menu is easy with the navigation buttons and everything works intuitively and just how it should. The only minus I can come up with is the fact that winding fast forward happens at one speed. That speed might be good for songs of around 3 minutes, but if you have songs of more than 10 minutes, it might get rather annoying to play forward to the part you wish to listen to. The Photo Library of the Sony Walkman lets you search for pictures per file and reproduce these on the monitor. The view is extremely clear and the pictures displayed on the monitor look great. The option to offer a slide show is excellent and it is a nice way of showing your pictures to your friends. If you click on the Video Library, you will get an overview of all the videos stored on the Walkman. These videos are also rendered clearly and are a joy to watch on the large monitor. The formats supported are: MP3, WMA, AAC, JPEG and MP4.

Sony music player

Sony music player

Sony Walkman options

I really felt happy when I saw the amount of options. Almost everywhere in the menu, you can click on the ‘Option’ button and a list will appear with an abundance of options. Too many, in fact, to mention them all in this review. I will therefore stick to the most important ones. Of course, there are the music options with the aforementioned audio technologies / equalizer and ‘Playback’ options. In addition, separate settings are available for photo and video, as well as Bluetooth settings to adjust the music quality for streaming through Bluetooth. ‘Common Settings’ speaks for itself; it offers options to adjust the brightness of the monitor, AVLS volume Limiter on or off, screensaver, clock and memory information. A nice function is the intelligent shuffle. You choose a year and the MP3 player will play every song that came out in that specific year. Additionally, the search function is available that lets you search through all the songs.

 

Sony NWZ-A826 MP3 player

Sony NWZ-A826 MP3 player

Equalizer settings

Did the amount of options already make me happy; when I saw the equalizer, my happiness was complete. The equalizer offers a number of preset settings: Heavy, Pop, Jazz, Unique and 2 custom settings to set your own preferred settings, which is easy thanks to the slide bars with figures. Equalizers with bars only, where you have to guess what every bar signifies, used to drive me mad. Thankfully, Sony made this one clear and well structured. The many settings pleasantly surprised me. I was able to find everything I needed and more on this MP3 player.

Sony NWZ-A826 music player

Sony NWZ-A826 music player

Bluetooth functionality

The Sony Walkman NWZ-A826 offers Bluetooth 2.0 which enables you to stream music from the MP3 player to appropriate equipment such as a wireless headset or car radio. Personally I would have liked to see an option to share files with Bluetooth, but unfortunately you can’t, only music streaming is enabled. This is a disadvantage, however, it does not diminish the functionality as such. It is still very useful to be able to take your own music everywhere and to ‘send’ it to your car radio.

 

Sony A826 Walkman

Sony A826 Walkman

Sony memory

The model from the Sony Walkman A-series we have tested features an internal flash memory of 4GB. This suffices to store approximately 1100 songs. It’s a real pity the memory cannot be enhanced, because if you store some videos on the MP3 player, the memory fills up rather quickly. If you store only music on your Sony Walkman NWZ-A826, you will not suffer from memory problems that easily. 4GB is a considerable amount of memory that doesn’t fill up that rapidly.

Sony USB Walkman

Sony USB Walkman

Walkman accessoires

When you purchase the Sony Walkman NWZ-A826, the following items are included: the MP3 player itself of course, EX earset with an extra pair of rubber earplugs, a foot-stool, a USB cable, Sony Media Manager software and a range of manuals and booklets. Furthermore, the Sony internet site offers many additional accessories, among which external speakers, chargers and pouches.

Sony NWZ-A826

Sony NWZ-A826

Sony USB cable

The included USB cable enables connecting the Sony Walkman to the computer. Managing music is easy with the included synchronization software. When transferring my music, I used Windows Media Player, which worked excellently. The transfer is fast and the library is created fast too; albums are reproduced and played correctly and finding the music when searching is fast as well. No comments on this matter, it works and is fast on top of that.

 

Sony Walkman software

A CD is included with the Sony Walkman that offers the Sony Media Manager 1.1 together with Windows Media Player 11. I have not been able to get the Sony Media Manager working with this MP3 player. It displays ‘error’ all the time and does not give me any information about what I should alter in order to get it working. I have tried and tried, but I didn’t succeed. My advice is to go to the synchronization option of the Windows Media Player immediately, since this works well, easy and fast. The software is not nearly as good as the MP3 player itself. It is a pity because the Walkman as such is outstanding.

Sony Walkman MP3 review

 
 
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