Sony Walkman x2! B Series & E Series MP3 players


The Sony Walkman B140 is very nearly a true MP3 player, except it plays WMA files as well. There’s no poncey video screen on this 26g device, just a 3-line LCD that tells you what music’s playing. What it does do, though, it appears to do very well.

It takes just 3 minutes of USB charging to get 90 minutes of listening time but, if you’re not in any hurry, it’ll offer 18 hours of playback after a 70 min’s wait. They come in 2GB and 4GB models, in pink, orange, red and black, and even with an FM radio too.


Features-wise there’s a very early 90s sounding Bass Boost but, best of all, I’m just glad to see small MP3 players sticking to the USB roots for both charging and music transfers. Cables are so two Tuesday’s ago.

The Sony Walkman E440 is a slightly larger creature with much more to play with and back. It comes in 4GB, 8GB and 16GB sizes and adds H.264, MPEG-4 and WMV video codecs to the party which you can watch on the 2-inch QVGA LCD. A full recharge takes 2 hours and offers 30 back in music or 6 in video. There is a 45 minute 80% quick charge but, frankly, that’s not that quick.

Black and red are the colour choices, as you can see in the rather nice image below, and this 54g player has a five-band EQ along with a volume normaliser which makes sure your tracks are all at the same level. There’s also some sound technologies in the shape of Clear Stereo and Clear Bass to control sound leakage and low-end frequency distortion respectively.


Sadly, I can’t tell you how much they’ll cost. For some legal reasons, to which I’m not sure I wish to hear the explanation, Sony is no longer allowed to give out its RRPs. However, I’m expecting around the £69 mark for the B160 and maybe £80/90 for the E series. Just a guess. We’ll find out when they pop up in stores in the next couple of weeks.

Sony Press Release

Zappin – the mini Sony Walkman


Sony has announced a range of mini USB-based MP3 players that should more than rival the iPod shuffle in the gym bunny market.

The Zappin name comes from its functionality which allows users to listen to a five second clip of a song before deciding whether or not to play it. Handy if you’re working on your guns and you need to find the exact tune to pump you up and you’re unable to move your head to look at the LCD screen.

The players have 2GB of storage, can play WMA as well as MP3 and also have a built in FM radio. The battery life is an astonishing 18 hours from a single charge and the Zappin’s only weigh 26g. Drag and drop is supported so no need to install any software.

No price has been confirmed by Sony. Sorry about that.

(via Akihabara)

Philips GoGear Opus: iPlayer-friendly, inexpensive PMP


Philips has launched the wallet-friendly MP3 (et al) player known as the GoGear Opus. We saw a little something of the 8GB/16GB device – well Zara did – out in Lisbon and now we hear it allows you to pay downloaded BBC iPlayer content too. Nice touch.

The news since then is that it’ll cost £99 or £129 depending which model you go for and it supports MP3, WMA, AAC (non-DRM) and FLAC (hurray!) for audio and MPEG4, WMV and SMV on the video side. Fear not, though, AVI, MOV, RM, WMV and DVDs can be converted by the software included. Make sure you factor in the time for that.

It measures 107mm x 11mm x 57mm and sports a 320 x 240-pixel, 2.8″ LCD capable of 262,000 colours. Not exactly mind blowing stuff here certainly good for the money.

You get the ever-reasonable free Philips headphones backed up by the ever-dividing FullSound upscaling technology with 30 hours of audio and 6 of video battery life to consider you point of view.

There’s some hook-you-in 30-day trials of Napster, if you wish, or you can go and get your music like a real (wo)man instead.

All in all, a pretty good package from Philips. Perfect for downscaling those iPod Touch birthday present requests without the bad taste in the mouth.


Naim launches all-in-one NaimUniti home entertainment machine


UK audio manufacture gods Naim is taking a step into the unknown this morning with the launch of their first all-in-one unit. The NaimUniti comprises an integrated amplifier, CD player, DAB/FM tuner, internet radio player, iPod & MP3 dock, digital to analogue converter, USB & network-stored music file player and network streamer. Kitchen sink not included.


You get 10 inputs with 50-watt-per-channel amplifier action and the idea is that it sits as your all purpose box in pride of place in your living. Under the telly springs to mind. You can play music from USB, stream media over your network and you can start plugging in your satellite box, DVD player and games console too.


It’s available now for a pretty reasonable £1995 with the n-link iPod connector cable for another £95. While you’ve got your wallet out, Naim also recommends a pair of £770 Naim n-SAT speakers as the perfect accompaniment.

NaimUniti Specifications

Audio Outputs – Speaker output Line output (L+R RCA) Sub output (2 Mono outputs via RCA) Pre-amp output (DIN)
Tape Output Fixed – 275mV, 600
Preamp Output load -10k to 8
Frequency response – 20Hz – 50 kHz
Signal to Noise Ratio – 80dB
Phase response on CD – Linear phase, absolute phase correct
Power output – 50WPC into 8Ù 90WPC into 4 Ù
Other outputs – Headphone 3.5mm jack
Antenna inputs F type
Analogue inputs – 3.5mm socket on front 3 x RCA 1*DIN with power to support
Stageline phono stage
Digital Inputs – 5 SPDIF (2xoptical, 2xcoaxial, 1*3.5mm jack) Input overload 27 dB (Rear panel connections) (Front panel: 33.8 dB) USB Front panel socket
Other inputs – Ethernet and iPod (analogue)
Remote input – Rear panel
RS232 – Rear panel
Audio files supported – Internet radio (WMA, MP3 Streams, MMS) Playlists (M3U,
PLS) MP3, AAC (up to 320 kbps, CBR/VBR) Apple Lossless (from iPod) Windows Media-formatted content (up to 320 kbps) WAV, FLAC, OGG Vorbis CD formats disc compatibility Redbook and CD-R Supply Voltage 100-120V or 220V to 240V, 50/60 Hz
Dimensions (H x W x D) – 87 x 432 x 314mm
Weight – 11.3kg
Finish – Black