Feeds
80%

Cowon iAudio O2 personal media player

Cowon A3 with SSD instead of HDD

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration

In the O2's defence, you could say that being a video player means that remembering which files are put were is less of an issue than it would be on a dedicated music player. Fill a 16GB card with 700MB video files and you only have 20-odd files to scan through to discover what's on the card before you look into the player's on-board memory. Filling a 16GB card with 256Kb/s MP3 files and trying to keep a handle on what's where would be a whole different kettle of fish.

Cowon iAudio O2

Splendid audio quality

Cowon reckons a full charge is good for 18 hours of audio playback or eight of video. The best we managed was 15.5 and 6.5, respectively, though we could probably have improved on these if we had turned the screen brightness down.

As per usual, we plugged the O2 into Ubuntu and Mac OS X boxes and on both occasions it popped up on the desktop without hesitation, though MTP operation seemed to be restricted to Vista and WMP 11.

The 16GB O2 will set you back £204, the 32GB £243. With 32GB SDHC cards available from around £65 that means you can have a 64GB media player for just a shade over £300.

The fly in that ointment is that you can get a 60GB Archos 5 for around the £250 mark. OK, it's heavier, H.264 codec support costs extra and the battery life isn't as good, but you get Wi-Fi, a web browser and a higher resolution screen into the bargain. Or you could just buy a 60GB A3 for around £235.

Verdict

The O2 is very much a game of two halves. Format and codec support is superb and it'll play pretty much any resolution video file you throw at it. The sound quality is excellent if a little on the quiet side, it is Biblically straightforward to use, and the ability to expand the storage is not to be sneezed at.

One the other hand, having a screen larger than that of the A3 but of a lower resolution just seems daft, while some will consider the lack of gapless playback, ID3 tag and playlist support to be deal breakers from the outset. ®

Thanks to AdvancedMP3Players for the review sample

More PMP Reviews...


Samsung P3
Preview

Cowon S9

Archos 7

Sony Walkman S

Build a business case: developing custom apps

80%

Cowon iAudio O2 personal media player

A touchscreen flash-storage version of the excellent A3 is a great idea, but it's let down a little by the screen resolution and lack of support for ID3 audio tags.
Price: £204 (16GB) £243 (32GB) RRP

More from The Register

next story
Nice computers don’t need to go to the toilet, says Barclays
Bad computers might ask if you are Sarah Connor
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
PEAK LANDFILL: Why tablet gloom is good news for Windows users
Sinofsky's hybrid strategy looks dafter than ever
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
VMware builds product executables on 50 Mac Minis
And goes to the Genius Bar for support
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?