|News Forum Reviews Articles Where to Shop Links Polls Submit News DAP Shop Content|
CES 2007: Cowoncomment: 26 | Tuesday, January 09 (2007) 10:24AM | Posted by Robert Sinke
One of the first booths we hit was Cowon's. They've got plenty of new stuff coming up, and luckily enough for the multimedia freaks among us, a lot of it is PMP-related. Guess they figured the low-capacity flash market is safe enough in the hands of the T2/F2/whatnot.
Speaking of flash players, though - the D2 is a flash player alright, but at least it comes in capacities up to 4GB; and then there's the SD slot for memory expansion purposes. We're now the proud owners of our very own touch screen-based D2 sample, so if you've got some questions... shoot. One of the few downsides we could find so far, is that you'll have to convert your video files in order for them to play on the D2. Other than that, the GUI, controls and design all look pretty friggin' decent.
Moving onto the really new stuff, beginning with the A3 - an improved version of, guess what, the A2. It basically looks completely identical in terms of design (apart from the fact that is black/blue rather than white/grey), meaning that the controls are the same and overall, the form factor is still rather on the large side.
The good news here is that the A3 comes with a new chipset ("DaVinci") that supposedly will improve overall video performance (especially through TV-out), while also allowing for a few new file formats: APE for audio and OGM/MKV (open source containers)/VOB for video. Shouldn't take too long for it to hit American/European soil and MSRPs are probably comparable A2 values.
The bad news is that Cowon didn't properly ground their samples, zapping some nice current into Austin's sticky little fingers every time he touched the thing .
Next in line: the Q5. Although it looks pretty plain on first sight, the Q5 has some very impressive tricks up its sleeves. What do you think about a maximum screen resolution of 800 x 480, for instance? Pretty dang sweet. We're talking about a 5-inch, 16.7m touch screen, by the way. That's the reason for the unit's "plain" looks as well - there are no controls cluttering the front side, making it kinda look like an enlarged Clix (or D2, if you will).
The 30GB Q5 is Win CE 5.0-based, supports the usual rim ram of formats (MPEG4 (A)SP, WMV, MP3, WMA (DRM), WAV, BMP, JPEG, PNG) on top of some more specific ones (Ogg, FLAC, APE, AC-3)... Cowon has those corners covered pretty well. Naturally, the unit also sports TV-out as well as an FM radio + recorder, USB-host and internal speakers.
It's also interesting to notice that it supports WiFi, Bluetooth and HSDPA - all wireless protocols that can be used for stuff like Internet browsing, e.g. through using the on-screen keyboard. GPS is optional. Seems like we've got ourselves our very own Cowon mini-computer over here, then. As a result of all of this functionality, price is expected to be rather steep - some 600 USD in Korea, although it's likely that some features can be stripped off according to continental standards, possibly lowering price levels here and there. Release window has been set to
Details on an X5 successor are still very vague... but at least there's some indication that they're moving along with that particular project as well. Cowon certainly is one of the highlights in an otherwise rather ill-lit (DAP-technically speaking) CES. We'll drop by again soon enough, so you might want to dump your inquiries in the comment section.
|All Content (c) 2003-2010 DAP Review.net|
MP3/Digital Audio Player News and Reviews