Samsung S5 review: Samsung S5

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CNET Editors' Rating

3.5 stars Very good
  • Overall: 7.7
  • Design: 7.0
  • Features: 8.0
  • Performance: 8.0
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good The Samsung S5 offers excellent sound quality and plenty of desirable features such as built-in Bluetooth, photo and video support, an FM radio, a voice recorder, and an alarm clock. The design is cool with a fun flip-out speaker for sharing tunes. The player comes with a pair of earbuds that fit comfortably and securely in the ear.

The Bad The Samsung S5 has a small screen and a proprietary USB connection, and it's pricier than most other flash MP3 players. The lack of tactile controls may turn off some users, and there are no dedicated volume buttons. Videos must be in Samsung's proprietary format.

The Bottom Line The Samsung S5 is an MP3 player with a fun interface and excellent sound quality; the screen is a bit small, but this player is still a great choice if you want to share your tunes at the drop of a dime.

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When Samsung came out with the K5 in 2006, we were stoked to see an MP3 player with an unusual design trait: a nifty built-in speaker that flipped out from behind the device and propped the player up for optimal listening. It helped, too, that the K5 offered plentiful features and stellar audio quality, though we weren't so keen on the super thick girth required to accommodate the speaker. Enter the S5, the K5's slimmer successor that adds built-in Bluetooth to the mix. While the S5 suffers from a few minor drawbacks such as a small screen and proprietary video support, it's quite the worthy option for those with a penchant for top-notch audio quality and the ability to share tunes on the fly.

Design and interface
Of course, you're going to have to shell out just a bit more for the S5 than you would for its competitors. The 2GB version lists for $119.99, while the 4GB model sells for $159.99 (by comparison, the 4GB Creative Zen goes lists at $129.99). Samsung offers both black and white versions of the player on its site, but black was the only color we could find for sale elsewhere. In the standard MP3 player position, the overall design of the S5 is boxy (it measures 3.8 inches by 1.8 inches by 0.6 inch), though the shiny face and lack of real buttons gives it a sleek look. The controls don't become apparent until you turn the player on, which is when six "keys" light up. There are four directional arrows surrounding a central play/pause/select dot as well as contextual menu and back keys.

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Where to Buy

Samsung S5 (4GB, black)

Part Number: YPS5JAB Released: Mar 1, 2008
Pricing is currently unavailable.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Release date Mar 1, 2008
  • Tuner Bands FM
  • Output Power / Total 40 mW
  • Run Time (Up To) 25 hour(s)
  • Capacity 4 GB
  • Color black
  • Weight 2.8 oz
  • Supported Digital Audio Standards protected WMA (DRM)
  • Installed Size 4 GB
  • Diagonal Size 1.8" m
  • Sound Output Mode stereo
  • Type digital player / radio