These are my first impressions only, feel free to ask questions in the comments. I Plan to expand the review as I live with it longer. Overall the Z1060 feels awkward and not quite polished. This player is based on the Android Gingerbread platform which is recent, but not the latest (Icecream 4.0). Maybe by the time the Android version makes it from 2.3.4 (mine) to 5.0, the human factors will be better integrated. Main target customers are probably owners of Android phones and possibly Zune players. What the Ipod Touch is to the Iphone, the Z1060 is to the Android Smart Phones, a smart phone without the phone. 4/27 update System updated itself to version 1.21. Having some problems. Many apps want to log into Google Accounts, back button not effective,cant close the app. Reboot. Music player still works well.5/3 Update Installed the Sony software, pretty good. The SensMe genius like function analyzes about 500 songs per hour. It does not save results immediately, I learned the hard way to get out of the software everyonce in a while to update the library. That way if anything crashes, you dont have to start from scratch. The 12 way analyzer that is integrated into the player is much slower at about 100 songs per hour.
5/21/12 Today I got to work with a car OBDII monitor Koolertron ELM 327 OBDII PC Car Diagnostic Scanner. and the free version of Android Torque app. Works great.
5/2013 Update Sony now updated the firmware. Android is up to 4.0.4 Ice Cream, and the music player now supports FLAC (free lossles audio compression). Battery life is said to be improved as well
Sound and amplifier quality are excellent. Bold, full, spacious, solid sound.
Radio - not digital though
Screen size 4.3"
Built in GPS, limited usefulness in included Maps app, low res without WiFi, coordinates ARE shown on more,about, center menu. Just found "precache" maps option - problem solved Wow! On the more, labs menu.
Screen very sensitive
Does not need bulky software to get music into player.USB drive mode interface. You dont need Vista or Win7, just use any computer to put mp3 files in the Walkman /music directory. It will find them on its own.
Works fine with other USB brick power supply such as the Iphone or the generic Car USB adapters
Direct link to web from song metadata
Built in speakers are stereo and quite loud
Supplied earbuds are very good to excellent. They are MDR EX300Sony MDR-EX300/BLK Vertical In-the-Ear Style EX Style Headphones (Black)
Very good as a gaming platform. The supplied jetski type demo game is very smooth and the tilt controls are the best I have ever tried.
Potentially useful as a WiFi phone thru GoogleTalk. Still trying to get that to work.
Cost, other 32 gig players are less.
Although large, and bright, screen resolution (480 x 800) not up to current standard.
No camera, not even VGA resolution.
Speakers on back are blocked when unit laid down, on hard surfaces back curvature helps.
No hard button on front make use in the dark difficult, many Android phones have these
Battery usage page shows main culprit as "cell standby" but there is no phone?,
Location service cannot be set to prompt its either always on or off,
Cover art flow looks bad multiple covers floating on screen,
Screen brightness not dynamically adjustable,
W button limited usefulness ff rew and pause,
Just holding the player often causes finger to hit home button messing up whatever you were doing.
Smartsense (Sony version of intelligent playlists) is very slow. About 1-3 min for a 3 min song for basic analysis, 3x longer for full analysis. It is required for smart (genius) plays lists and visualizer screen savers that "respond" to music. Also buggy, sometimes after basic analysis is completed it does not say anything and wants to do a full analysis. Trying to cancel this suggested lengthy analysis can result in total lockup of the unit requiring big switch power down.
Visualizer screens not very creative. When used after analysis, seem VERY choppy, not smooth.
While playing music, Unlock invariably says no songs available, then catches up and shows the current song playing.
Difficult to tell what applications are running, requires multiple keystrokes. I had to manually force shutdown on two extra music players. Why were there three instances running in the first place?
Battery life- Used up 25% after about 3 hours of use (60% screen off music only, 40% screen on and videos, WiFi running)
Yet another proprietary interface connector. Why not simply a mini or micro USB? Can't be because of the HDMI interface, because it has its own connector on the side.
on October 26, 2015
Great if you want a device just for listening to music and don't want to chuck money at an apple product that will fail after about a year of heavy use. actually bought this thing years ago used and the only problem ive had is the headphone jack got loose. Which was an easy fix only needed a small screwdriver to open and tighten the screws holding the jack in.
It's a sleek little gadget- very lightweight and great screen. Sort of like a mini-tablet, bigger and slimmer than an iPhone (which seems a little chunky in comparison). I really do like it- it's sort of in between a Kindle Fire and a iPhone, but a little curvier. It's definitely what Sony set out to make- a portable media player that is small enough to tote around in your pocket/bag/etc, small enough to hold comfortably in your hand, but not so small that you need to hold it up to your face to watch a movie on it.
The big downside? This machine is not intended or designed to work with Macs/Apple computers. We have a Windows box upstairs in my husband's office that he uses for work, but I was hoping to figure out a workaround to get the Walkman to work with our MacBooks, specifically with iTunes. However, the Walkman DOES show up as an external drive when plugged into the USB port of my MacBook. Inside that drive is a folder called "MUSIC" so you can drag and drop your music files into there with little problem. Organizing those files and creating playlists from your Mac, however, will not be possible via iTunes on your Mac products and the Walkman straight from the box. If you are a media junkie, like me, you'll want to have your playlists and movies transferred as they are to the Walkman (I have *so* many playlists that the idea of creating them all from scratch on the Walkman makes me want to cry just a little bit.) There's some third party software I am going to try out, but most of that software costs money, so it's an added investment.
There also is not a camera.
Some additional info: The unit comes with a nice set of earbuds, information packet (no software), and a USB cord. There's no plug-in-wall charger included, so I assume that's either an accessory you can purchase or you can charge using the USB connection to your computer or a USB charger that plugs into the wall, a la iPhone or Kindle.
I will post updates to this review as I try to get the Walkman working with my Mac. But wanted to let Mac users (or people looking for a gift for their favorite Mac users) that this machine was *not* designed to pair with Macs and will probably take a little sleuthing on the recipient's part to get it going.
I wondered to myself, what was the reason people would pay over three hundred dollars for an android phone without the phone, or a camera for that matter. Was playing angry birds that compelling, or perhaps the high quality MP3 player? All those things could be had more cheaply I thought, so why does anyone need this. I thought maybe smart phones are all so subsidized by the contracts, that they really cost this much for the actual device. That may have been true to a small extent, but it was not the answer. I came across it later on, as I showed the phone to my brother, who had come over to watch the basketball game.
My brother is an android phone user, and had one of the latest versions fo the phone. From a distance, it looked just like this one, and the screen size of his phone was about the same as well. He took the player from me, and immediately commented on the "feel" of the device. It had "rounded" edges, which felt more comfortable holding in his hand than his phone, which had sharp corners. Since both phones were connected to my home network, they both had web access. His I had connected to my network some time back, and I had just entered the password to connect the Sony. He did a search on the phone, and then went to a few sites, and said to himself "no....."! Picking up his phone he tried a few searches, and site selections, and counted the loading time. It appeared the Sony was maybe five times or more, faster on a WiFi network than his own new Android Phone!
I looked at the hype describing the device, and this class of unit has the first dual core processor to be used in a hand-held of this kind. Speed was a big feature, and besides that it was a top notch MP3 player with a huge amount of memory and a great sound. I'm sorry for this review I did not have the time to try anything other than the AP collection that comes with it, but thats pretty good on it's own. Unfortunately, it is limited in video playing MP4 format, and I would really prefer a device that would play several formats, rather than having to do file conversions.
Overall I did like it, I'll have to put some other APs on it one day, and I wish it did have a camera, but as a internet mini-surfer, it allows me to kick back in bed or a comfortable chair. and surf the web without having to fire up the desktop PC. Take away one star if you have to have everything in your phone. Give it another half star if you have a cheapie $20.00, "pay as you go" phone like me, and would rather play angry birds, and surf on something without the 75 dollar a month surcharges.
on April 15, 2012
Decided I had wasted my money buying a Motorola Xoom tablet, because I just was not using it. Plus, the sound quality on the Xoom was pretty mediocre at best, even with the added micro SD slot for my storage. So I sold the Xoom and bought one of the new Sony Z1060s (I also own an iPhone and an iPod Classic 160GB, Gen 7), sort of as a replacement for the tablet. I know a 4.3-inch screen is not the same as a 10-inch screen, but I also have a nice netbook if I need more screen real estate. As an ereader, music player and Android machine, the Z1060 is pretty nifty. And the sound quality is off the charts, depending on the headphones you use. I have a nice pair of custom phones, JH5 Pros from Jerry Harvey Audio, and the synergy between the Z1060 and the JH5s blows me away. I am "hearing" my music collection (at least 20GB of it, the amount loaded on the Sony so far) all over again, incredible details, robust sound. Could not be happier with the Z1060. The Z1060 also sounds great with some other phones I have (Westone 3s, Atrio MG7s, Creative Aurvana Live! and Fostex T20p. Oddly enough, the Z1060 does not sound great with my Grado SR80s, but it must be the two just don't synergize well, because the Grados so sound decent with other player/amp combos.
However, even if you use the OEM phones that come with the Z1060 (I wish Sony would specify the model, because they don't match any that are listed on the Sonystyle website), the sound is still very good. For packaged headphones, they are excellent (though I wish they would get rid of the J-cord on their phones). They could be a variation of the very decent EX300 phones, not sure. The photos of the EX300s on Amazon and the ones that come with the Z1060 are not a match, but they look very similar.
Anyway, I am really happy with the Z1060, which will become my primary at-home listening and e-reader device, sharing time with the iPod Classic using a portable headphone amp/line out dock. I can now rest my iPhone 4 a bit and cut down on battery recharges. I would say the Z1060 is a bit better sound quality-wise over the Apple players/phone, but I really like them all for various uses.
Update: Reduced rating to four stars because the wifi connection is very difficult to get working. If I am sitting next to my router, no problem. But from my living room, not far away (and not a problem for netbooks or laptops in the house), the Z will just not connect until several attempts, and sometimes not at all. I used the "test" wifi connection feature, and it says connected to my WEP network, but when I try to access websites, etc., no go. Sucks really. I don't care about it all that much (can always use my iPhone4), but I am going to try some public wifi sites and see what happens. Very annoying. But I still love the sound.
My Sony Walkman came with a thumb sized "light spot" blemish on the display screen. The screen is still visible underneath, it just appears brighter than the surrounding area if that makes sense. I don't know what caused it, and I need to send it for repair. However, that aside - the blemish is only annoying when you are watching videos and I suppose I could get away with not sending it in, but it's annoying.
EDIT 5/2/12 - Not expensive to repair. After checking with Sony all I needed to do was send it back in the original packaging and they are fixing it free of charge. I have to pay shipping however. I will update when I get this back to let you know how long it took to do repairs and if they were done properly.
EDIT 5/12/12 - Got a notification parts needed to fix the Walkman were on back order, no date given on when I could expect it, just a "Please be patient".
EDIT 5/29/12 - After saying we'd have it back in 8-10 business days around the 14th I STILL don't have it back and they just send me automated messages with no new information. Getting frustrated. I'm downgrading my original outlook from optimistic to negative. This thing better come back pristine.
EDIT 6/2/12- got the walkman back and repaired. It seems ok but now it loses wifi connectivity for no reason and it did not do that before. I don't know if this is something else that is wrong or if it is just a small hickup on my end. I will watch it for a few days and see if there is any change... take it to work and see how it does there on that wifi.
I do love the Wi-Fi capabilities (when working) and the ease of downloading apps. It works pretty much the same as my Galaxy Tablet. And downloading my own music and media files is so simple. It really takes no time at all to familiarize yourself with the controls.
The sound quality is AMAZING, as one would expect if you use decent quality headphones, and I like the fact that there is also a built in speaker in case you don't want to use headphones - but the quality on that speaker is a little lacking - I won't fault Sony too much for that. It's still pretty awesome to have that feature because my other MP3 players have not had it certainly.
At 32gig, which seems like a lot you are getting a lot of space but I had a lot of movies and so I rapidly ate through all the space and didn't have enough room for my music collection - so I'll have to be a bit more sparing I guess... but 32gig would be enough for the average human. Plus with the WiFi, and a netflix account I guess you can get movies streaming.
It's got all the bells and whistles you could want, but no camera - which it seems like they could have thrown in there easily enough. Other than that it's like a mini-tablet computer really - wrapped up with an MP3 Player.
on June 21, 2012
Out of the box it is clear that the product designers had mixed feeling about whether this should be pocket sized or tablet sized, so they chose neither - ending in an awkward size. Too big for pockets, not big enough to carry like a tablet.
The screen is sharp and well sized, and the overall appearance of the Walkman is rather sheik. The touch screen and layout is rather similar to an Ipod's layout.
The Media software that comes with the product is a great program: it does what it's supposed to do and doesn't drown your cpu usage. The Walkman uses Google play store, a very convenient way of getting all the apps, music, movies, and books you want.
The built in speakers are fantastic, delivering high quality sound even at full blast (several times better than an Ipod's speakers). The headphones that come with it are also great quality.
Overall, if the size is a good fit for you then this is a great product.
In far too many ways, Sony's latest top-of-the-line portable media player shows exactly why Sony isn't high on everyone's favorite brands list. It's a competently designed mini-tablet, somewhat larger than an iPod touch, and rather attractive considering its typically uninspired Sony design. The sound quality is quite good (I have to agree with other reviewers that it's better than an iPod), and if nothing else, the fact that it's an Android device means software will never be a problem.
The problem is that Sony just isn't trying very hard. It's a little nicer than, say, a Kindle Fire, but not nicer enough; the interface is, by all appearances, bog-standard Android 2.3, and the playback interface is just about what you'd expect from a phone that isn't optimized specifically for multimedia. (The Walkman logo button on the side is meant to pop up a playback controller while the device is sleeping, but it's not immediately obvious that's what it's for.) The inclusion of an HDMI port is nice, but it doesn't make up for the total lack of a camera; while I admit Sony probably didn't want to cannibalize their sales of Bloggie camcorders, there's zero sense in charging more than Apple does (larger screen or no) and not providing a feature many users are going to consider important. In fact you'd be forgiven for not even knowing there's a microphone on the unit; there's no external evidence of it, only the presence of a confusing, poorly designed voice memo app. Also, the lack of Mac support is just brain-dead; although the Z-series works fine as a USB storage device, the fact that it works with iTunes on Windows but not iTunes on Mac is silly. As for the headphones... well, I don't consider them a critical part of the product, especially as I use my portable media players mostly in the car, so the fact that mine don't seem to work very well may just be a quality control issue. (Also an issue: one corner of my screen has a bright smear on it -- crushed screen corner? transit damage? I'd be interested in knowing if screen issues are a common problem on this series.) And the use of a dock connector that is compatible with neither Apple nor Sansa, and isn't a micro-USB port, is just a bad idea all around, especially given what Sony tends to charge for replacement cables.
On the whole, it's an okay device; functionally it's more or less equivalent to a third-generation iPod touch, so if you don't need the camera and the bigger screen appeals to you, it will do the job. But I'm hard pressed to recommend a device that uses a dual-core processor -- 2012 tech -- to build a 2010 product. Sony as a company isn't in the greatest shape right now, and the Z-series Walkman shows why. For my purposes, it's a flash drive with a screen and speaker.
Always read the whole description before buying something. Since I got it as a Vine offering, my order of the Walkman MEP was a bit impulsive. Many of the apps and much of the functionality depend on an internet connection, which I couldn't afford to get at this time, so I am not able to give as much information as I'd like here. Nonetheless, it is clear that this Droid look-alike performs well, charges fast, and has a great display for things like videos and movies. I really like the size and proportion of it especially for that. I still have my old Sony CD Walkman and this product appears as well-made and durable.
This Walkman paired easily with the Bluetooth system of my 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander, and the audio quality on my Outlander's 750W hi-fi system is awesome. There's a lot of richness to the sound when output to a set of high-quality hi-fi speakers and also to good-quality headphones. Video support is typical of the Android kind, and the Walkman's screen is good enough for most viewings, except in bright daylight.
The system is responsive most of the time, but not all the time. Transfering music and video media can be done via drag-n-drop in Windows Explorer, but the transfer speed over USB 2.0 hi-speed averages only about 6.5 MB/s, vs. about 8 MB/s for my HTC Radar phone using the same cable connected to the same port on the same Toshiba core i7 laptop.
To me, Sony continues to disappoint by not being able to come up with its own OS, after 10 years of lagging Apple in the portable digital era. I guess their British CEO knows nothing about electronics and is determined to turn Sony away from electronics, which is just bad.