First of all, you should know that I practically live in headphones and an MP3 player. Listening to music is as much a part of my walking, as the physical workout itself. It gets worse than that though. You see, I’m somewhat of an audio nerd as well. I’m extremely finicky when it comes to the actual quality of the sound that reaches my eardrums. You might remember that before I went into medical field, I worked as a recording/sound engineer.. an audiophile if you will. Whether I’m listening to music on a home audio system, at a live concert , or during my workouts on my Mp3 player, I want to feel the music. I want to hear the full range sound, from crisp highs to resonating lows and punchy bass.
The Walkman W series MP3 system, is basically a set of headphones that have an Mp3 player built right into them. Amazingly, they were able to cram all the standard MP3 function controls into such a tiny little package. Pretty cool actually. What you have here is a no frills 2gb player that hooks over your ears kinda like the way Blue-tooth receivers do, so no need for headphone wires.
When not in use, the two ear pieces come together via magnets to form the shape of a heart…..Ahhh aint that cute
Now I’m not exactly a follow- the-instruction manual kinda guy, but getting the thing going was a piece of cake. After a fairly straight forward set up, transfer of music files and examination of where the controls were located, I put the buds in my ears and headed out for a 8 miler.
I have to admit, I was pleasantly surprised. The unit does exactly what it’s suppose to do…It stay in your ears while you’re running, jogging… or in my case, racewalking! It actually felt weird at first not having any wires to fiddle with it. You just put the earbuds in your ears, turn it on and forget about it. No more getting tangled up in wires or accidentally having an earbud yanked out of your ear when you pull your arms back too close to your body(which is something you do a lot of when you racewalk.)
The unit is also water resistant, but I didn’t get to check that claim out, as I barely broke a sweat during the 2 hour walk.
My only real complaint, is that there is no sound equalizer or audio presets on the unit ( I mean where would you put them?). I’m not sure what the actual specs are, but I found the sound to be kinda metallic and mid-rangy. Again, I’m an audio nerd and most people probably wouldn’t even notice this. I will say however, that in my opinion, the audio quality of this Walkman is better than the Ipod nano.
So overall I like this cordless Walkman, or should I say, I like concept behind it. I wish the audio quality was a little more to my standards, but I’m totally impressed with the rest of the design, that for the most part, works very well and looks kinda cool too. Sony is definitely on the right track with this one. I think future models will be even better.
If you’re looking for a music player that will stay in your ears while you’re on the move, give these babies a test run. Sony is offering a special discount through this link.
Disclaimer, I was provided with this product free of charge in exchange for reviewing it.