Top positive review
58 of 66 people found this helpful
Love My Walkman!!!
on November 8, 2012
I have the Sony S-Series, E-Series, A-Series and now the F-Series Walkman; I also own the Cowon S9 and have a Samsung Smart Phone. All of my devices play music and video but space and battery life is what drives me on my purchase decisions. To put this in perspective, I tried to use my phone to listen to music or watch a video while traveling (airline travel is boring lol) but I realized I was constantly needing to recharge and that's not good. The phone is used for calls, email and text and yes, I do have a car charger and the phone is integrated into my car via Bluetooth. My PMPs are also integrated into my car via an auxiliary jack or I can use Bluetooth) I won't use my phone for anything else outside the above three reasons (I have built-in GPS in my car as well) except on rare occasions so that's the reason for battery life; now for space issues.
Exercising and completing DIY projects is much better when jamming with tunes (I'm sure we've all been there). The S-Series has 2GB and a very small screen...OK for tunes but not much space and the screen was too small for videos. The E-Series has 16GB but the screen was too small for videos as well. The Cowon S9 is an excellent device but IMO, too bulky to slip into my gym shorts while exercising or just working around the house (I dislike arm bands or cases when exercising or completing DIY projects because they don't feel right too me and get in the way). The A-Series Walkman is a pristine device (I mean I love that device for the gym and watching videos) but memory was capped at 16GB and I almost filled that with tunes. The reason for filling the space up was due to the album art and custom art I attached to each song (I use a program called mp3tag pro); the A-Series screen is excellent and I enjoy looking at the art. I took a chance on this device due to limited reviews and it took me a few days to get used to it but now I'm totally into the system.
The F-Series is running Google's Ice Cream OS but my main reason for purchasing this system was the 32GB option (If Sony ever brings a 64GB Walkman to the States, I would purchase that as well). I have over a 120GBs of tunes so no, I won't ever put all of my tunes on one device nor would I want too. This system has the same control over sound, e.g. equalizer, virtual sound space, etc. and the tunes/videos sound and look great. I wasn't sure about the Android IC OS but I have no issues connecting and checked out most of the apps, e.g. email, YouTube, location, app store etc. and I'm digging it. Why? I set my phone on vibrate and know that I have that area covered (email, calls and text) and I can play hard with this device. I also love the design, e.g. slimness (slimmest Walkman to hit the shelves so far) and screen size and the variety of options to view your media (One cool thing is the user selectable screen visualizers that match the rhythm of your music for a unique visual experience; similar to a screen saver.) The one thing I thought I would miss from the A-Series was the physical buttons to control your tunes, e.g. access your tunes and adjust volume or advance to the next song. Actually, I almost cancelled this order when I realized that this system didn't have the physical buttons for advancing tunes (there is a volume button) but after playing with it for a few days, I'm totally comfortable with it. The F-Series has a 'W' button that lets you access your tunes immediately even if the screen is locked and that's good for me; little music player app appears on the screen that allows advancement to the next tune and displays album art.
In short, if you really like your media but need a rock solid communications system for work, then the F-Series should be on your short list. Your phone can be used for work/family issues (I get almost three days of use from a single charge) and I can play long using this device. BTW - when I'm at the gym, I don't accept any calls nor will I read/respond to any emails/texts (I don't even bring my phone into the gym).
A couple of other things worth mentioning. The included buds are excellent but if you're like me, you own a few top shelf buds to jam with. I use Sony's flagship set of buds, Sony MDREX1000 In-Ear Headphones and Etymotic Research ER-4PT MicroPro Noise-Isolating In-Ear Earphones. These buds can make a world of difference for sound but I'm not diminishing the sound from the included buds (I started with Sony buds, 300, 500 and 700 series and always enjoyed them) and the included ones are the 300 series; definitely OK to jam with. Comparison to the IPOD series isn't something I'll comment on. Why? I use a MacBook Pro for work and my kids have all the Ipods, Ipads, etc. They're all beautiful devices but I prefer the Walkman sound; my Cowon rocks too but the system is not on the same level as the Walkman IMO.
I'm sure the price will drop soon but I really enjoy this device and for me, was worth purchasing to bring a little joy into my life. Hope this review helps you and feel free to ask questions.
Update - Note on transferring music and video files to the Walkman. I use Media Go (included software) to transfer music because the app analyzes the songs and places them in a category, e.g. relax, morning, upbeat, energetic, etc. You can select a category and only play songs from that area similar to playlist. For videos, I use an outstanding program named Aiseesoft Total Video Converter. I convert my videos (TV, Movies and Music Videos) into Sony's format, MP4 video, and then drag and drop using Windows Explorer; I do not use Media Go for this function.
2nd Update - The unit has an update to v1.10. This update is required to facilitate the use of playlists on the unit. I use playlists all the time and like having the ability to add a tune to a selected or new playlist on the fly.
3rd Update - I ordered the case for this unit and learned something. I was reluctant to order from a merchant directly but came across Amazon.UK and ordered there. All my info was available for billing/shipping and the case should arrive in 2-4 days with expedited international shipping; How cool...Update: received the case four days after ordering from Amazon.UK...very impressed with shipping and the case itself.
4th Update - I recently took a business trip and wanted a case to hold my Walkman (I already have a case on this), Sony Earbuds and USB adapter; I have a Compact Premium GPS Carrying Case for Garmin Nuvi 255W 4.3" that was no longer used and that case was perfect for holding/protecting my PMP and accouterments while traveling, e.g. keeping everything together/protected in my suitcase; have to interact with clients sometimes and doing it with buds in my ears would lessen the professional appearance lol.
5th Update - I have been putting this device through various config options including exploring more Android apps and comparing to my other PMPs. Being objective, this player rocks; music/video sounds full and rich and much better than my other players.
6th Update - OK this is cool. If I connect my Walkman in my car via the auxiliary jack, I cannot advance tunes using the controls on my steering wheel. I found out last week that if I connect my Walkman via Bluetooth, I CAN advance tunes using the controls on my steering wheel. This is a major help as I was using my Cowon and A-Series in the car but I don't have to anymore. This player is becoming my go to player for almost everything (I still prefer buttons when sitting in the dentist chair hence the Cowon or A-Series lol).
7th Update - I recently upgraded my phone to a Droid Razr Maxx HD and very impressed with the specs particularly the battery life (reason I went with the Droid). I could easily say that my phone can take care of all my needs but for one caveat - size. This Walkman is the largest size I would slip into my gym shorts, jacket pocket, etc. without feeling too cumbersome. So, the Walkman still gets top billing from me for entertainment (tunes/video) and my phone can now be used for a few more things than previously, e.g. Internet is not an issue any longer due to battery life.
8th Update - I just purchased the JayBird BlueBuds X Sport Bluetooth Headphones - Midnight Black and this is a major change. The buds sound great and most importantly, pair with multiple devices that can be used simultaneously. To understand this, I paired these headphones with my phone so I can accept calls via the buds (the buds have controls for this and more) and paired with my Sony Walkman so I can listen to tunes/watch videos. Everything is smooth on connectivity and as long as I'm not riding my motorcycle and/or scooter, I'm very pleased. I did provide a review of the JayBird buds if you want more information on that.