13
Sep
sony-walkman-z

Following its recent announcement of the "Live With Walkman" Android smartphone, Sony has today officially introduced the Walkman Z Series (Japanese press release) of personal media players.

sony-walkman-z

These Android 2.3 devices will weigh approximately 156g and will feature the following specs:

  • 1GHz NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual-core CPU
  • 4.3 TFT color LCD, WVGA (480 × 800)
  • 512MB RAM
  • Bluetooth
  • 802.11b/g/n WiFi
  • WEP/WPA/WPA2 Encryption
  • GPS
  • E-Compass
  • G-Sensor
  • FM Radio
  • Built-in mono speaker (this is an interesting choice considering this device is billed as a "Walkman" phone)
  • HDMI output
  • DLNA

As these devices are billed as "Walkman" PMPs the lack of a camera is not entirely surprising.

However, sticking to its core music and media consumption functions these PMPs have a wealth of audio enhancements, including the following technologies built right into the device:

  • "S-Master MX" digital amplifier
  • digital noise cancelling
  • 13.5mmEX Headphones
  • DSEE
  • Clear Stereo
  • Clear base
  • 5-band Equalizer
  • 5 seeds VPT Acoustic Engine
  • Dynamic Normalizer
  • Clear phase
  • xLOUD

The devices will also support a wide variety of music formats, such as MP3, ATRAC, ATRAC Advanced Lossless, AAC, HE-AAC, WMA, and Linear PCM, and video formats, such as MPEG4, AVC (H.264 Baseline), and WMV.

There are also a couple of interesting features built-into the devices to allow the user to make full use of it as a PMP. Firstly, the "W. Music," app provides a number of ways for the user to browse through their media library.

img_002

Secondly, the built-in "W. Button" appears everywhere, regardless of the display, allowing the user to control the music playback. Lastly, there are a number of elegant visualisations to suit the mood of the music.

img_004

This series of Android PMPs will come in three varieties based on sizes:

  • "NW-Z1050" (16GB): ¥ 28,000 ($ 363.64)
  • "NW-Z1060" (32GB): ¥ 33,000 ($ 428.57)
  • "NW-Z1070" (64GB): ¥ 43,000 ($ 558.44)

Sony's press release also provides estimates of dedicated accessories for the Z Series, including:

  • Dedicated headphones ("MDR-NWNC200"): ¥ 18,000 ($ 233.77)
  • Leather case ("CKL-NWZ1000"): ¥ 4,000 ($ 51.95)
  • Clear case ("CKH-NWZ1000"): ¥ 2,800 ($ 36.36)
  • Silicon case ("CKM-NWZ1000"): $ 25
  • Privacy filter ("PRF-NWP43"): ¥ 2,000 ($ 25.97)
  • Screen protectors ("PRF-NWH43"): ¥ 1,500 ($ 19.48)

With numerous manufacturers making their own versions of Android, Sony's Walkman Z Series should satisfy the niche audiophile market who wish to have a state of the art Android device.

The original source of this article was in Japanese and Google Translate was used, hence some content may have been lost in translation.

Source: Walkman Z Series and Press Release (Japanese) via This Is My Next

Abhiroop Basu
Abhiroop Basu is an opinionated tech and digital media blogger. As a doe-eyed twenty-something he started his first blog TechComet to comment on anything tech-related that caught his omniscient eye. Since then he has blogged for Android Police, Make Tech Easier, and This Green Machine. In the real world, Abhiroop Basu is a resident of Singapore and the Editor of The Digit, a subsidiary of The Potato Productions Group.

  • Alexander Procter

    Did you mean to say 'wealth' ?

    a dearth of audio enhancements

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Pretty sure you're right. I'll fix that - otherwise it sounds exactly the opposite.

    • http://www.abhiroopbasu.com Abhiroop Basu

      Cheers for noticing!

  • nico159

    No support for Flac?

    • Alwyn

      Lossless audio is Flac.

      • tony

        FLAC is lossless audio, lossless audio is not always FLAC. It could also be Windows Media Lossless, or even WAV.

  • Anthony Harper

    $558.00 for a 64g version? Are they crazy??!!! It doesn't even have a camera! The 64g Microsoft Zune is only $350.00 and the Zune library is $15.00/month for UNLIMITED music; while the 64g Apple iPod is around $350.00 as well, it has dual cameras, wifi with video and skype, etc. Sorry, as much as I would love to see a competitive Android music/video player, the projected price-point is completely off the mark.

    Personally, if I were to design a product that has more appeal to the masses, I would have dual cameras such as the iPod, and in addition to the internal storage of 16/32/64g I would also incorporate a removable SD card slot so that the user can CONVENIENTLY swap out media because having to sync the media player with the specifically designed software linked to only one computer is quite inconvenient at times.

    The music service is another aspect that makes the Zune such an appealing product - perhaps Sony with its vast empire of music should consider a similar marketplace for consumers. Unlike iTunes, the Zune library lets you listen to the entire song, while iTunes limits the consumer to only 30 or so seconds to decide if you like the song. The Zune does not have a built-in speaker, while the iPod does - a feature that most consumers appreciate, especially when using the iPod for a Skype call.

    While I applaud the attempt to improve the Walkman series of mp3 players using an Android platform, and many of the features are very good, I think they've missed the mark when it comes to the lack of cameras, removable media, and the projected price of the unit.

    • Ben

      I agree. They could at least have added a front camera to allow for video chat since the devices have wifi.
      And they should definitely be a lot cheaper!

    • David Ruddock

      No one has suggested these will be released stateside, and the conversion to USD is just there for information's sake. It's highly unlikely that, were these to come to the US, the converted prices would reflect the actual MSRP.

      Sony is seen as a "premium" electronics manufacturer in Japan - people will and do pay these kinds of prices for electronics all the time in Japan.

      • Ben

        Living in Scandinavia I have yet to see a device released with a price point lower than the initially suggested retail price (at launch).
        I don't expect these devices to sell for any less than what is proposed - should they be released here.

    • http://www.abhiroopbasu.com Abhiroop Basu

      Agreed David. Especially considering that the press release and the main page are both in Japanese it is very unlikely these will ever actually be released in the US or any other country aside from Japan.

    • Coollead

      The price of this player is cheaper than the iPod touch. You cannot use YEN-to-USD simple conversions for any sort of conversion.

      Also, Sony has their own music service, Quriocity.

  • droidbeat

    Not having a camera is a huge selling point for people who can't take cameras into their workplace.

    • lincthra

      This is exactly the comment I was going to make before scrolling down and saw your's. Mind you, the price point IS pretty brutal for what it is but it would be that and not the camera that is the deal breaker. It wasn't long ago that I started a job I couldn't take my phone into because of the camera and had to settle for a random mp3 player... which pretty much made me miss the Android experience every hour of my workday. There is definitely a gaping hole in the market for this.

  • Brandon

    Lol, those are some crazy expensive earphones. I hope they for that price they compete with Sennheiser and the likes of their competitors.

  • Ribbys

    You will not hear the difference between mono and stereo with speakers on a 4-5cm device.

    Its better to put a bigger mono speaker than two small speakers for 'stereo'.

  • mskks64

    I'm glad to finally see an android media player! I love my iPod for music but would love an android device. The price is way too high and I would like alot more memory my ipod is 160 or 180 i cant remember.

    • Sony copied the J3 chassis

      Cowon have been making an Android media player for about a year now - the D3.

      Sony are charging way too much for their new device - as per usual, Sony make something slick and then decide to be greedy - just like Apple with their iPhone (for example, compare the price of an iPhone with the price of a Samsung Galaxy S2)

  • Gordon

    ugly as sin. IMO Sony should steal a lead designer from Apple or HTC.

  • D3Seeker

    No FLAC! Or maybe it's just not listed, I thought Sony was doing a good job wit formats lately. But they do have ATRAC, and Lossless at that.

    Also I may question the decision to go without a camera, but more so, Will we get these stateside?! A certain other android PMP Has gone rouge and was suppose to be here in the sprig but that never happened.

  • spacedingo

    I've listened a sony walkman player with s-master amp and it's simply ast-sounding I say this on the basis that you have good gear like headphone amp, headphones to go with it, to know it's great sound. Unfu*ing-fortunately i lost my walkman and im punishing myself by not buying another one.

    I am interested in this model because this has s-master amp and android, meaning could lossless/flac or just about any a/v format be played back on this walkman? Sombody confirm this.

  • Sponge_Bob

    The reason this mp3 player is so expensive compared to other mp3 players is because it has new audio technology that none of the other mp3 players out on the market have. Sony cares more about the quality of audio playback because well IT'S A MUSIC PLAYER. I believe that Sony, Samsung, Cowon, and Philips care way more about the quality of music and video playback moreso than the iPods. People are too spoiled by having cameras on their phones and mp3 players. If you want to take pictures, stop being lazy and buy a friggin camera. If not, then you're obviously not too worried about taking pictures. And don't talk about size, I have a digital camera that is more compact than my ipod. Apple is too worried about quantity, losing touch with quality. It's well known that ipods' music quality isn't as good as it should be, but because it has a camera, wifi, and tons of apps (omfg!), people will fall for them. I believe Sony, Samsung, and Microsoft have made way better personal media players than the iPod. Plus Apple tries too hard to appeal to people without technology knowledge. While Sony looks to be appealing to the more tech-savvy consumers.

  • Waiter

    I am waiting for a Sony Ericsson Walkman Phone.

    Sound quality is critically important but it is very unconveniently to listen to good music (with noise cancellation?) and keeps missing calls in other mobile device.

  • Crapple

    it willlmost likely be300 because the currency always changes,so 16g is 300
    32g couldbe 350 or400 and 64g could be 400 or 450

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