Archos bundle with the 705 a dinky little 54-key remote control complete with a Qwerty keyboard, a tacit acknowledgment that the touchscreen UI can be a little lax as an emailing and URL-entry tool. The 705 also comes with a rather cheap plastic stylus, although with nowhere to house it inside the player it's likely to get lost early on.
Unusually for a device in the premium end of the market, the 705 doesn't come with any media management software, so loading content is simply a case of drag and drop. However, the player is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux.
To connect to a TV you'll need the DVR Station 5
With such a large screen and a hard drive to power, battery life could have been an issue, but Archos has fitted the 705 with a big old removable 3.7V power pack that gave us 19 hours of continuous music playback and five of video. Both numbers are just a little shy of Archos' claims of 22 and 5.5, respectively, but are pretty impressive nonetheless.
To connect to a TV you need to cough up another £70 for the DVR Station 5, which changes the 705 into a full-fledged DVR that can be used to record direct from your TV and play back content the same way. Archos tells us the station will allow you to stream media to your TV from your PC as a UPnP device, but since it didn't send us one we couldn't test this.
And why should we? The 705 is clearly branded a "mobile DVR", yet without forking out for an optional extra, the machine is most definitely not a DVR. How many consumers are going to walk out of a shop with one of these PMPs, having seen the label on the front of the unit, only to find that it doesn't do what it says on the tin?
There is no doubting the 705's competency. As a media player it is quite superb - size, weight and slightly clumsy touchscreen UI notwithstanding. As a web browsing device, though, it is less successful, and the inability to stream internet radio or access your favourite RSS feeds are major drawbacks.
But Archos deserves strong criticism for labelling the device as a DVR when there's no DVR functionality out of the box. You can't even connect the 705 to a TV without buying the £70 optional add-on. Badly done, Archos.
Archos 705 Wi-Fi mobile DVR
Closed Linux OS = Bad. Nokia's Open Linux = Better
The makers of the Archos have given the device a closed version of linux. You can not develop applications for it, so you simply won't find any of the common applications you would expect ... unless Archos makes it and slaps a price tag on it.
The Nokia N810 is far more flexible. the Maemo OS is open, hundreds of applications are available from people around the world for free ... although admittedly many of them should NOT be coding ... but if you don't like it, you can build something yourself, unlike with the Archos.
... For example, Mobipocket ... not available for either device. But thanks to the open source Garnet Virtual Machine, with some effort you can run Mobipocket for Palm on your Nokia N810, while the Archos owners keep begging Mobipocket for a version ... that Mobipocket can't make due to the closed Archos system.
The Nokia N810 has similar battery life, a good screen if smaller, is much lighter and comfortably fits in a coat pocket.
One problem with the screen..
....that put me off the 705 was that it's only 262k colours, where as the 605 which I got instead, with the same resolution is 16million and makes quite a difference. Plus the 705 is really too big for travelling on buses/trains or walking.
Also, it supports WMP for synching out of the box so you don't have to drag'n'drop, but drag'n'drop is usually better as you can use other applications to manage your collection.
I just wish it could internally resize video that's too large, within reason, rather than rejecting it.
Oh and I agree with the double tap nonsense - I wish they'd add an option to set it to single tap.
"Navigation around the 705 is pretty straightforward"
"The icons are not that intuitive"
lol, make your mind up...!
As far as I'm concerned, all of those chargeable extras should be standard out of the box. I'm sure it will do a very nice job, but I agree it needs marking harshly for being a con artist
"Creative and the like squabble over the mass market for MP3 players"
Do a bit of research mate before you knock out generic nonesense!
Creative own the only company that has made a chip capable of doing 720P HD output from 1watt of power and you think they arent interested in this market?
I have the similar but more portable 800x480 4.3" Archos 605WiFi
The Internet is MUCH better than Safari or Opera on the E65 phone. Phone displays are just too small.
But all these Archos are useless for DVR. They only record at 640x480
As PMP (video) and Web-Browers, great. I hope the rumour of Real Player or equivalent is true.
Unlike other PMP it will play 720x576 files as is. Though re-encoding to DivX is recommended to fit 2 to 3 times as many as straight DVD (which needs a plug in).
Indeed these are not DVRs.