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on March 30, 2007
I like this player a lot. 3 minutes out of the box I was connected the home WiFi. 2 minutes later it found my Infrant ReadyNAS (ReadyNAS NV+, 1.0TB (4 x 250GB pre-installed Seagate Barracuda ES SATA HDD), X-RAID, 256MB memory, Silver, SFF desktop NAS) and was streaming MP3s and video to the player flawlessly.
Size:
It's thick and heavy. It has a similar footprint to a Sony ebook reader, but much deeper and heavier. It's just about as wide and tall as a DVD case, but again, much deeper (almost 3/4 of an inch deep).
Formats:
I do not have any media formats that this won't play. I did purchase the optional .VOB codec from the Archos site. It plays my WMV (including DRM stuff), Divx, AVI, MP3(all kinds).
Accessories:
It comes with a nice woven nylon case and a 120V power adapter. It has headphones (with inline volume) and USB in and USB out.
Connections:
It has audio out (headphones), power, USB (mini in, mini out, two Archos plugs for docking and that's it. Everything else needs a dock to work.
Screen:
The touch screen is vibrant and very bright. I have big fingers so I do better with a stylus for controls. The high resolution is amazing.
Sound:
The speakers are "OK" but headphones could be louder. I took this on a plane yesterday and the included headphones were not loud enough to hear over the engine noise. I had to use my Sure E5c headphones to hear anything on videos and MP3s (Shure E5c Sound Isolating Earphones).
Internet:
It comes with Opera and surfing was fine. A great device for webmail or shopping (it comes with am eMusic 50 free MP3s certificate). I will take this (instead of a laptop) on my next vacation.
Sync:
The platey can snyc (USB) as a Windows Media Device or a USD hard drive. I love that option (it asks you each sync).
Issues:
1. I would have liked a place to "plunge" the stylus in the device for storage (the case has a tiny pocket).
2. I would have liked Svideo out without buying a dock.
3. Audio out should be louder.
Wishes:
1. I would love to see this use a bluetooth phone as a DUN to the hit the net.
2. I would love to have and SD Card reader on board to help move media on the road.
Other Issues:
1. Be careful with Unbox video. The resolution of this player far exceeds most mobile players. One of my goals was to start buying Unbox videos instead of ripping my DVDs all the time. Problem: the "mobile" size of Unbox video looks very poor on the screen (please try an inexpensive one for yourself)due to low resolution. And Unbox does not allow you to sync (no snyc rights) the larger video that you download. So I have a video that I "bought" that I cannot use on this device because the low version looks so bad, and the high-res version has DRM restrictions that won't let it play on the 704 Wifi. Not terrible, but it will keep 704 owners from renting or buying from Unbox for sure.
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on April 16, 2007
I orignally purchased this as a companion to my A504 so I can watch videos from a further distance while at a hotel (I travel A LOT). The first thing I learned is that the screen is a fingerprint magnet so using a stylus is the best bet. The included stylus is okay (one extra is included) but I've been using a pen/stylus combo that works just as well and isn't as liable to get lost. The case is acceptable, but could use a little more rigidity for my taste.

Video clarity is pretty good; not as good as the A504 but it is still decent with less glare than the A504. The screen is also nice and bright and can be seen under most lighting conditions (except direct sunlight which I encountered while flying to southern California recently). I was also happy with the embeded speaker volume as it didn't need to be jacked up 100 to be heard in a mildly noisy room like the A504.

Video & Audio out are just as good as the A504 while using the DVR station. One little nitpick would be the adapter for the DVR station could be a little deeper to make the connection more secure.

PC connection is very good as you can use a cable from another AX04 unit or a standard USB mini-plug with the choice to sync as a Windows device or use as a hard drive. I generally use it as a hard drive as the files I transfer are all Xvid or Divx and I don't want WMP11 to re-code my files. The only gripe here would be the lack of USB charging. All other 4th generation Archos units are USB chargeable, but this one isn't.

Using the unit as a web tablet was a real suprise. I didn't think that I would use it in that capacity very often, but I found (on a recent trip) that I could do almost everything on the web with the 704 that I can do with a laptop. It came in very handy during a recent conference where I needed to get to some .PDF files off my corporate website to show a customer. It isn't the fastest unit in town, but it works quite well in a pinch. I've found myself using it at home with my wireless connection almost as often as I use my laptop. One thing I would like to see is the ability to connect a small keyboard for data input as trying to write an email using the onscreen keyboard is a bit of a pain. Also, trying to access streaming video off of a webpage is an effort in futility.

Battery life is very good for a unit this large. I turned it on and let it run through my video folder (at brightness level one which is the default and at 75% volume) and it took just over 4 1/2 hours to deplete the battery. I haven't noticed if using the WiFi drains the battery any faster but it doesn't seem to.

All in all, I am very happy with the unit. I'm a huge Archos fan (except for their customer service, but I digress...) and I look forward to getting the spare batteries as soon as they are available.
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on June 12, 2007
I've eagerly waited for a device that could do all the things the 704 says it can do. And believe me I've had all the devices out there. 1st gen I=pod to Video I-pod and the Archos 704 Wifi blows them away. If you are a true techie like myself you'll have to agree that nothing comes close to this little baby. The screen is excellent especially if you have Divx files, not to mention that it can handle almost any video file out there with the plugins of course. Mpeg, VOB, WMV, Divx and even Apple Mp4 files without a hickup. I used to own the Archos 504 but when I saw this baby, wow was I sold. Connecting to my home wireless network is a breeze and using it as a file server took a bit longer than I expected, but once I was up and running it was easy! What I'll be looking for next is the ability to watch streaming video or music and then I'll die happy! In a nutshell, an I-pod is nice to have if you're just into music and paying for one at $299 is not the best way I like spending my money. I hooked it up to my plasma and it was like renting a DVD movie, clear and sound was pretty good. I also hooked it up to my LCD projector and was surprised that the quality was also good.
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VINE VOICEon April 19, 2007
This is a great device. As previous reviews mentioned, it took me less then 2 minutes to get on the internet, check weather and read the latest news on the BBC. The browser works a lot better then I expected.

Displaying pictures is extremely fast, even large jpgs of 4-5 MB load under a second. This was for me the main purpose as I often do extensive trips where I take lots of pictures. Bringing 30-40 1gig memory cards is just not practical nor is bringing a heavy laptop.

I had no problems playing DIVX files and jumping to the middle of the movie was extremely fast, better then my current PC. The sharpness of the screen could be improved a bit, but it is far better then my old AV400 (which I am replacing because it only has a 20GB HD) and above all it is nice and large.

There are a few things I wish they would fix/add.

1)viewing PDFs is slow since only one page is loaded at the time, even for very small PDF files.

2) No way to view or type up a quick text file

3) The device is Linux based and has a browser, so I wish they would release some limited utils/games for it. A text/notes editor, Sudoku, solitair... Or at least allow the user to point to the 704's drive to pull up self made web pages.

Oh and I almost forgot, it played my MP3s flowlessly.

I can't wait for my next vacation trip and really test it out!!!
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on July 3, 2007
Let me start out buy saying that I have always been a huge Archos fan. This is my third one and it is GARBAGE. It arrived borken (from Archos). Instead of taking the broken unitback and sending me a new one, they insisted on trying to fix it. It came back still not working. I was told to wait 5-6 weeks for a firmware update, that would fix my issues. When the firmware did finally come, it did nothing to address any of my issues. So called them. Still wouldn't send a new one; wanted to try to fix it again. I paid, again, to have it sent out. Came back broken again. Keep in mind, each time you send it to their horrible tech and customer service, it takes 4-5 weeks to get back. So now I called them and told them I just want to return the item for a refund. I was told I was past my 30 days! hahahhaha. I told them I haven't had a working unit for 1 day and the only reason I have held onto the unit is because you guys told me your firmware would fix it. So I now have mailed the unit back a third time and it has been sitting in limbo with them for 4 weeks now. I ordered this unit the day it was released. It is now months and months later, and I still have no working item; even worse, the nest generation 705's will probably been weeks away when I finally do get a wroking unit. This customer support is pathetic. I am a huge backer of Archos, and I am telling people to avoid this company like the PLAGUE. They got to big to quick and can't keep up with what is going on around them. They don't care what their customers think as long as they haveyour money. You will hear a ton of people say that "mine works fine - I don't know what he is talking about". Trust me. Go to any Archos site dedicated to Archos, and there is just one horror story after another, talking about broken units and zero help in getting them repaired or replaced. If you happen to get on of these lemon units, the company will acts as if it is your problem and you must have done something to cause it. As stated...I have always been such a huge Archos fan and have heared the horror stories, but now that I am on their side of the fence, I know completely what they are talking about. STAY CLEAR OF THIS COMPANY. Purchasing anything from them is like putting $500 down on black in roullette -- you have a 50-50 chance of hitting with a winning unit, but if you don't your out %500. Because they will not give you your money back and it will pretty much become a second job getting it fixed (they put you on hold fo HOURS at a time - and then they eventually just let the phone system disconnect you. At which point you have to call over and get back into the waiting line - which will take hours again). Please do yourself a favor. Look at Cowon or some other company.
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on June 11, 2007
Love the machine, it is great to take on the road to watch movie and share photos with friends and family. Battery will last on an oversea flight especially if you bring a spare. The WIFI is quite good although it is somewhat difficult to navigate around. One advantage of this machine is that you can hold it in your hand when you watching a movie or pictures, it hardly emit any heat and the machine doesn't feel hot. Easy to transfer movies from cable or computer. The only deficiency is that not everything is in one box, you have to buy some essential separately.

I appreciate that they are trying to keep the price point down but it is inconvenient to buy the items separately especially since most retailers do not carry accessory. Also this is not a great MP3 player because the machine is too big. The case that came with the machine is ok but I would recommend it add a simple belt loop at the back. The earjack connection needs improvement because sound quality is not very good on a plane even with a noise reduction earphone. Battery is adequate and not too pricy which I appreciate.
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on August 23, 2007
I've been using Archos since the AV400 for the same purpose: get rid of the "Are we there yet?". the touch screen is cool but not so if you had to use your finger instead of the stylus; you'll really have to press hard and get your finger prints all over the screen. You'll have to purchase the DVR cradle before you could record from TV. The timed recording is good too, but the new Generation 5 that's almost available on the market now has a feature that enables you to record a specific show from the Program Guide.

PROS:
- clear screen, touch screen
- good sound
- good battery life (enough for a 3-hour trip)
- ok WiFi reception (if you were desperate to go online!)
- good portable backup
- all functions are easily accessible by remote control
- records and plays in multiple video formats (AV series used to only record and play AVI)

CONS:
- nowhere to place the stylus when docked
- you need to buy a DVR docking station to record from TV (not needed in the old AV series)
- very slow PDF reader (takes forever to load the user manual)
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on November 18, 2007
I have had this Archos Video Player for about 1 month now and am completely happy with it. I have been using DVD decrypter to strip copy protection from DVD's that I own and compressing them with Gordian Knot to about 700 Meg in size in DIVX format. Given the 80GB hard drive installed that equates to over 100 movies on a very nice 7 inch touchscreen display. The sound quality is very good and volume is acceptable for airline or auto use. I also purchased the optional video adapter that lets you view video on TV as well as use the internal hard drive like a digital video recorder (DVR) both work exceptionally well. I would recommend purchasing a extra battery for it since while using it for video the battery pack only lasts about 4 hours, I havent measured the battery life with MP3's. MP3 and WMA playback is very good as well (I purchased mainly for video play while traveling). The only drawbacks I have come to find is that the wifi link only works with a unprotected Wireless network, and the internet browser that is included is Opera, which is sometimes difficult to use for those used to Firefox or Internet Explorer. Other than those two drawbacks, this is a fantastic video player that I thoroughly enjoy and find it a much better value that the Creative Vision W or the Apple Ipod. ps....I have now had this player for 3 months and am as still pleased with it as the day I purchased it. I have been reading some complaints that people have been having over the size of it. If you are only looking for a MP3 player this is not the device for you. If you want a device that has a fantastik large 7 inch picture with great sound, there is no better device. It does weigh in at about a pound, but is much lighter than lugging a laptop around while traveling...plus the wireless internet is a godsend on short trips so I can leave that laptop at home. I have had absolutely zero issues with this player and have over 100 high quality movies loaded on the hard drive. The one and only thing I think archos coul dhave improved on is an even larger hard drive option. Other than that...you cant beat this portable video device.....Dont buy and Apple IPOD....Buy this!
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on June 6, 2007
Not having as much fun with mine. There are 3 things I was looking for in the unit:

-photo viewer (connecting directly from camera)

-movie downloads

-internet access

I've been at it for 5 hours now, and still getting error messages when trying to view my photos loaded directly from the camera (this is not a recognized file type, will not play). I have a Nikon digital slr camera using JPEG formats.

More error messages when trying to access e-mail (Yahoo and company server). There is not a backslash key on the keyboard which I need to get into my company email (through outlook web access).

And lastly, it feels kind of clunky

I'm going to return it tomorrow, I just think it wasn't very user friendly.
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on November 24, 2007
Pretty picture and a smooth Video Player but .. it's still a brick (weight) of a Portable Media Player.
Archos 704 color screen is absolutely gorgeous, vivid color in all angle of views. Its touch-screen technology is flawless for a handheld with 7" color screen. Interface takes some practice but as is with anything else- different. The truly shining feature has to be getting-the-DVD-into-the Archos 704. Simple and quick for you to get going on a train or plane or automobile. WiFi is somewhat slow but it's handy when you need to get to the email. Opera built in browser can be better, a lot better. Music as smooth with MP3 but unlike iPod where Apple owns the iTune. If you're a big fan of DVDs or have long commuting, this is it. It's the one.
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