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Brennan's technophobe-ready hard-disk jukebox

We see a major issue here: Why max out with an 80GB hard disk?

Crave UK

For those who don't want to spend $1,400 on the Philips WACS7500 or splash out on one of Sony's Giga Jukes, you could try the HDD-based JB7 from market newcomer Brennan. There are no speakers, no Wi-Fi, no radio, no big colorful display, and no lush extra features. Instead, it's a compact unit with a simple purpose: to aggregate your CD collection with minimal fuss.

Technophobes may appreciate its simplicity--we'll know when we've had a play ourselves--and anyone without a computer will undoubtedly find it a convenient way to break into the jukebox market. The JB7 includes a 60-watt amplifier and the Gracenote CD database built-in, so your CD rips are automatically labeled and tagged with artist info. The whole lot can be directly hooked up to a pair of speakers. Unfortunately, it only offers an utterly pathetic 20GB version starting at 250 pounds ($495), 40GB for 300 pounds ($594), and 80GB at a horrific 320 pounds ($634).

We see a major issue here: Why max out with an 80GB hard disk for Silicon Heaven's sake? Would it really break the bank to shove in a 250GB hard disk instead? Those drives are hardly costly these days; plus, it would open the possibility to rip CDs into true lossless quality--offered by the JB7--instead of lossy MP3, which is really the only way you're going to get a massive CD collection into even the top model's space.

But the main thing we take issue with is price. You can pick up a 20GB hard disk for less than 20 pounds ($40). This is what's in Brennan's entry-level model. Hop over to a site such as and you can snag 500GB drives for about 60 pounds more. Why, then, does Brennan want 70 pounds more for just 60GB of extra space?

We'll have a full review and a hands-on report for you very soon, as our JB7 has just arrived. Safe to say we're absolutely shocked at the expense of this simple unit.

(Source: Crave UK)