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CNET First Look
CNET First Look
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>> Hey I am Donald Bell, senior editor for MP3 and digital audio and today we are taking our first look at the RCA Opal. The Opal is a budget MP3 player that comes in 1 GB and 2 GB capacities. It has a lot of support for most formats, it also has voice recording and line in recording, although the line in recording part of this goes through the headphone jack, so you can use your headphones to monitor the incoming signal of the line in recording if you wanted to use it for that. It has a 1.5-inch OLED color screen, that's really the biggest claim to fame on this player, is that it's a sub $80 player that has a color OLED screen that can support photos and video. Using photos on this was really easy, we just did a drag and drop of JPEG photos from our hard drive onto the player and they came up, they didn't have to go through a converting process or anything. Video is a little tougher, video requires to use RCA's own video conversion program, which was a little iffy at least on our computer. It converted some formats like AVI, had trouble converting other formats, NPEG formats or MOB file formats, but all in all it does work for a kind of shoehorning video onto this thing. The larger question is whether or not you really want to watch video on a 1.5-inch OLED screen. We also like the fact that it uses a proprietary USB connection that uses the headphone jack connection to connect it to your computer, if you lose this cable you are kind of screwed. We did like the fact that RCA included some pretty nice ear buds with the player, they sounded great, and they had a good fit in our ears. All in all though the Opal is a really well rounded player that supports a lot of formats, comes with great ear buds, lets you do video and photos; for all under eighty dollars. In fact the 2 GB is around seventy dollars; the 1 GB is about sixty, it's a good price to pay. If you're not that interested in the color screen, video support, photo support, there is a lot better, more user-friendly MP3 players out there that are even around the fifty-dollar range. I am Donald Bell and that was a first look at the RCA Opal MP3 player.
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