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iRiver at CEScomment: 2 | Sunday, January 09 (2005) 08:51AM | Posted by Austin Vaughan
iRiver had a very respectable booth, showcasing the current lineup of flash and HD-based players, especially the H10. The H10 will soon be available in the US (February) for $ 279 MSRP. This is a 5gb DAP similiar in size to the iPod Mini, but featuring a color screen and some other goodies. As the iRiver rep explained, the H10 will be iRiver\'s flagship model for 2005, eventually replacing the H300 series as well.
After playing with the H10 and quizing the iRiver people, here's some interesting things to consider about it:
• The H10 will not be a Mass Storage Complient device, instead, it is an MTP device. Which means that it will act like a MSC on Windows XP machines, and only XP machines. Will not be recognized by Linux or Mac type computers.
• Although it will have line in recording and line-out capability, it requires a player dock to access these functions. The player dock will not be included in the retail box and must be purchased seperately (approximately $ 40 MSRP).
• The player dock allows you to use and charge the player, while simultaniously charging a spare battery. It also folds up (clam-shell type design) for easy transportation.
• As the battery is removable, extras will be available for purchase. Supposedly at the time of launch or shortly after.
• There are no dedicated volume buttons, you must be in the Now Playing screen to adjust volume.
• The touch-strip does feel very "touchy" - in that, it will certainly take some getting used to. The sensitivity is adjustable in the settings.
• There is no standard USB port on the main unit, you will have to use a special cable (similiar to iPod's configuration).
• There is a port near the headphone jack that indicates an in-line remote will be possible at some point, but is not included with the player, nor were any prototypes available at this time.
• Does not feature gapless MP3 playback. They could not answer when or if it would ever happen.
• You can browse/play music by File/Folders or by iD3-tag database (Artist, Album, Track, etc). The H10 requires a PC application in order to build the iD3-tag dB, it cannot self-database like the Rio Carbon.
• Features FM radio, radio recording, voice recording, text view.
• Feels very light, almost toy-like.
• Screen quality is definately above average but not the best we've seen. It does seem a little small (a half inch more would do it right).
We also saw a set of portable speakers built specifically for the H10, with an integrated dock.
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