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iRiver’s digital music players are held in fairly high esteem by MP3 enthusiasts who praise them for their excellent sound quality and innovative features.
For the recently launched H340 40GB hard disk-based player, iRiver has added what is certain to become a key facility on rival models: a colour screen. The 2in display doesn’t make it any easier to find your way round your music collection – iRiver needs to work on the interface. However, the device now moonlights as a reasonably good quality picture viewer, displaying JPeg images. Another neat feature is that you can connect certain digital cameras to the player via USB to transfer the images over – a lifesaver when you are on holiday. Like its predecessors, the H340 offers playback of MP3 and WMA files, a voice recorder and FM tuner, and battery life of 16 hours.
Its key flaw is its size: it is both bulkier and heavier than its key 40GB rival, the Apple iPod. Nevertheless at £360 the H340 is an innovative player.