Of late, there has been a massive surge in portable / mobile entertainment devices which comprise entertainment oriented smartphones, tablets, phablets, and the popular iPods. However, this has not lessened the spirit for Sony which still believes that an audiophile player market is still in existence.
In the music category, very few music players have been able to attain the popularity and brand value like the Sony Walkman. This brand has definitely seen one of the most prominent transitions from portable cassette players to the current age of digital media formats. The sheer popularity of this brand may be judged by the fact that the company celebrated the 35th Anniversary for the Walkman brand this month.
In keeping with the current technological advancements and the need to comply with the “premium” segment offerings, Sony had introduced the Walkman NWZ-ZX1 in December, 2013. This product has been made available in certain Asian and European markets. As of now, no official confirmation has been provided for a global release for this high end product. This is rather strange as the company has enjoyed strong sales for this product.
- Display: 4-inch TFT screen with an FWVGA (480×854 pixels) resolution (The TRILUMINOS display provides brilliant and vivid colours.)
- Storage: 128GB of inbuilt storage
- Audio Format Support: 24-bit 192kHz flac audio a.k.a the ultra-high resolution audio format
- Format Compatibility: MP3, WMA (DRM), AAC-LC (Non DRM), Linear PCM, JPEG, MPEG4, AVC (H.264/AVC), and WMV 9.
- Connectivity: USB and WM-Port
- Power Management: 3 hours for full charge and 32 hours of continuous playback music for every full charge. (However, this is possible when playing MP3 songs @ 128kbps. The battery life may vary with changes in the sound settings.)
- OS: Android™ Version 4.1
- Features: Drag and Drop facility, Dynamic Normalizer, Clear Bass, Clear Stereo, 5 Band Equalizer, DSEE HX (upscaling restores quality to compressed files), S-Master HX digital amplifier
- Dimensions: 59.7mm x 122.3mm x 13.5mm
- Weight : 139 g
The Walkman NWZ-ZX1 was launched with a price tag of $700 which roughly converts to INR 42,200. Of course, this was but expected, considering the integration of some of the finest features from Sony’s audiophile oriented developments. However, it does get stiff competition from Apple’s iPod touch which is lighter, slimmer and a price tag that is $500 or INR 30,100 cheaper than the Walkman.
In light of this comparative argument, Sony’s Kenji Nakada, Sound Product Planner at the Japanese electronics giant, stated that, “The message for our designers and engineers was: please create a good product without worrying about the cost.” The features of the new Walkman do speak loads about the music quality and the precision levels that have been adhered while coming up with this amazing device that will definitely be in the possession of all audiophiles (if they have the cash to buy it).
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