Samsung has lately been turning heads with its hip MP3 players
, and the YP-T9 is no exception. This slim, sexy device, available with either 2GB ($149) or 4GB ($199) capacity, is not only user-friendly but also sounds great. Impatient users should take note, though, as the device's processor lags a bit.
The YP-T9 is smaller and--dare we say sleeker--than the iPod Nano.
The Samsung YP-T9 looks good in pictures, but it's even hotter once you get your hands on it. It's smaller than an iPod Nano (3.2x1.5x0.3 inch) and yet it boasts a noticeably larger, 1.8-inch screen. Like the YP-T7
, the YP-T9 vaguely resembles a cell phone, though we prefer the T9's slimmer profile and shiny black case. What's more, the player manages to look good and not sacrifice usability (ahem, did someone say Razr
The device's ergonomic five-way control pad makes navigation a breeze (and reminds us of the Rio Carbon). We love the large, center select button, which is nicely indented. However, we're not as crazy about the buttons located along the device's right spine. While the play/pause/power key is fine in this location, we'd prefer to have the Back and Menu buttons located on the front, as it can be tough to hit the correct buttons on such a thin device. Also, the Menu key is a bit misleading: it only pulls up only contextual menus from within the various playback screens (with different options for music, photo, and video), rather than taking you back to the main menu. Once you get used to this, though, it's OK. The context menu during audio playback allows you to quickly set EQs, Play Mode, Play Speed, and background (either album art, your own images, or pulsating graphics.)
The bright, colorful screen displays photos nicely.
We're completely taken with the YP-T9's beautiful screen and colorful, animated interface. Samsung took some care in offering an aesthetically pleasing, modern design without sacrificing usability. As with the K5, the device's top menu features function-based icons that morph into a written description of the selection. It's a little hard to describe (check out our video for a more detailed look), but it's definitely cool. The menus are generally intuitive, with music selections sorted by artist, album, and so on.