Cowon may be a bit of an underdog in the U.S. market in terms of sales, but boy, this company sure does know how to make a quality MP3 player. I have in my hand the Cowon D2, a solid device dominated by a 2.5-inch screen. I had seen a picture of the player before CES, but it didn't do the D2 justice--the player has such a nice feel to it. The sleek, black body is wrapped in a brushed-metal border, where you can find some tactile controls: a power/hold slider, volume buttons, and a menu … Read more
SDI Technologies, the maker of the hot-selling iPod clock radio, is showing new affordably priced iPod speaker accessories at CES, including two small home-based units, the iH10 ($49)and iH4 ($49), and the portable iH19 ($69), which comes in multiple colors. The company also has a license to use the Timex name in upcoming iPod clock radios, so this is clearly an accessory company on the move. During my tour of the SDI meeting room (for dealers), I was shown a couple of more novel iPod accesories, including a speaker with a built-in iPod dock that looks like a water … Read more
Convergence among devices is one thing, but it's happening with accessories as well. The Duracell PowerFM ($79.99) from Battery-Biz is three iPod Nano (1G and 2G) add-ons in one: an FM transmitter, a protective silicone case, and a battery pack.
The transmitter sends your iPod's audio out to any FM radio receiver within about 8 feet via a user-selectable frequency, while the lithium-ion battery pack doubles the life of your iPod's built-in battery. The PowerFM isn't hideously obtrusive, and a pass-through port on the bottom lets you hook up other iPod accessories that use the … Read more
You may not have heard much about Eton, the sole licensee of Grundig for all of North America, but you may have seen some of its portable radio products in a Sharper Image catalog. The company had a well-priced and decent-performing iPod speaker last year, the Eton Sound 50, and at CES it was showing a couple of new products, including the Apple Hi-Fi-like Sound 200, which will come out in March for $250. Along with an iPod dock on top of the speaker, there's also a USB port for playing back tunes from a USB thumbdrive and … Read more
Wet foam-based ear-pads are the natural result of heavy exercise while listening to music. Jensen addresses this soggy problem with its SportFone MP3 neck-phones (JHM3005). Rather than foam, the ear pieces are made of sweat-repelling and hypoallergenic silicon.
Sportfone comes in two flavors, a 512MB (due in February and priced at $69.99) and a 1GB version (due in summer 2007 but no price has been announced). An included USB cable facilitates music to neck-phone transfers of MP3 and WMA files, and the gray-and-orange wrap-around phones come in a soft-sided, foam-filled orange carrying case.
In a practice jaunt around the … Read more
Ever since Sonos opened the door for whole-house iPod wireless network solutions, numerous firms have tried to produce less expensive alternatives that also avoid the DRM issue, such as the conceptually similar but not as pricey Creative XDock systems. But both the Sonos and the Creative XDock require the addition of separate speakers.
Griffin's Evolve is a less ambitious $349 whole-house solution operating in the 900MHz spectrum. But for the money, you get a base that charges and broadcasts your music and video through two included speakers. Essentially, the twin 4-inch-square speakers charge on the transmitter base, then can … Read more
iRiver is replacing its T10 MP3 player with the T50 and the T60, both of which look a bit odd, in keeping with the whole T series. Available in spring 2007, the T50 and the T60 will have 1, 2, or 4GB of flash memory, a 1-inch color CSTN screen, an FM tuner, and a voice recorder. The main controller is a little joystick (click wheels are for newbies anyway, right?), and you'll be able to play back MP3s and WMAs as well as OGG and ASF files, but not video. These players are for the disposable-battery-loving crowd, and … Read more
The original iRiver Clix was a design success if not a commercial one, but the new Clix2 looks to do well in both respects. It's got the same clickable-screen faceplate, but the device is much thinner and a bit longer than its predecessor, and the 2.2-inch QVGA screen sports new AMOLED technology (oy, how the acronyms do grow) for extra brightness.
You'll be able to view video (now at 30 frames per second in MPEG-4 and WMV9 formats), photos, and album art; audio support will include WMA, MP3, OGG, and Audible formats. It will come in 2, … Read more
iRiver is showing off a few new products at CES, but the coolest among them is the W10, a Wi-Fi-capable portable media player with a 3-inch 480 x 272-pixel touch-screen LCD. In addition to 2GB, 4GB, or 8GB of internal flash memory, this hottie will sport a Mini SD slot for expandable storage. It runs on Windows CE and supports plenty of different audio and video formats (MPEG-4 SP, WMV9, MP3, WMA, AAC, and H.264).
But the niftiest features are the Wi-Fi positioning finder, thanks to a partnership with SkyHook Wireless, and VoIP capability for using the device to … Read more
OK, so it's not made by Dell, but the tip about the portable SideShow companion device turned out to be true. And it even looks kind of similar to the iRiver Clix, which is how I pictured it originally. In fact, though, the companion device is really thin, and it actually looks almost exactly like the Meizu Mini Player. (Unfortunately, I haven't been able to get my hands on an image of the companion device, so that's the Mini Player you see at right.) The gadget I saw on the show floor at CES 2007 is made … Read more