Feeds
65%

Cowon Q5W media player

The killer PMP/internet tablet combo?

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The Q5 also has a built-in FM radio, which lacks RDS and needs the earphones cable connected to get any sort of reception. There's a little remote control that is fussy over what angle you use it at, and there's also Windows CE Office Viewer and MS WordPad, though how much use these are on a device whose main uses are media playback and web browsing is debatable. A good selection of AV cables and a handy combined USB to USB and mini USB cable also come in the box.

Wireless signal reception proved to be a bit of an issue during our time with the Q5. Much of the test took place in an office in which Wi-Fi reception is close to perfect, despite being on a different floor from the router. Certainly laptops show either a 'Very Good' or 'Excellent' signal, as did the HTC S730 smartphone, a Nokia N810 and Archos 705 we recently had on test. The Q5, however, would only show a half-decent signal on the ground floor, and even then only when virtually in line of sight with the router, which is pretty poor in our book.

Click for full-size version

Some of the applications are somewhat dated

During our test we found the manufacturer's predictions of a battery life of seven hours for video or 13 for audio to be about right. We got a shade over twelve-and-a-half hours of continuous audio playback, and six-and-a-half of video.

The Q5's biggest problem is price. At around £390 for the 40GB model it's a whole £100 more expensive than the 60GB A3. It also looks costly when stacked up against the Archos 705, which can be had in 160GB form for around £360, or for just over £300 in 80GB form. If you can stomach a 0.7in drop in screen size, then buying the 30GB Archos 605 will save you even more money.

Verdict

As a PMP, Cowon's Q5 is very, very good. But, like the Archos 705, it rather trips over itself when it tries to be an internet tablet. That raises the question, why buy the Q5 rather than the A3? Take away the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth headphones connectivity, and when all is said and done you are paying a fair bit extra just for an extra inch of screen, and less file and codec support.

In our book there's still a large gap in the market for a successful combination of PMP and internet tablet. A 32GB iPod Touch with comprehensive file and codec support would do the trick - until then we are going to see what we can do with a Nokia N810, a Cowon A3 and some Araldite.

The Q5 review unit was supplied by Advanced MP3 Players

Remote control for virtualized desktops

65%

Cowon Q5W media player

A fine if expensive media player, but still not the killer PMP/internet tablet combo we were hoping for.
Price: £398 (40GB) / £419 (60GB) RRP

More from The Register

next story
NOKIA - Not FINNished yet! BEHOLD the somewhat DULL MYSTERY DEVICE!
N1 mini-'slab to plop into crowded pond next year
The Nokia ENIGMA THING and its SECRET, TERRIBLE purpose
Finnish firm coyly exposes mystery product – and WE NO what it is
Heyyy! NICE e-bracelet you've got there ... SHAME if someone were to SUBPOENA it
Court pops open cans of worms and whup-ass in Fitbit case
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Nokia's N1 fondleslab's HIDDEN BRILLIANCE: The 'Z Launcher'
Sugarcoating Android's Lollipop makes tab easier to swallow
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence
Download Choosing a Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence to learn more about cloud computing - the new opportunities and new security challenges.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.