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MP3 Players

In-car singalongs with Sony

The upcoming long weekend means road trips are on the cards, and Sony has some new options for in-car entertainment en route.

Are we there yet? Some of Sony's in-car line-up.

The Easter long weekend approaches, meaning a whole lot of families will shortly embark on the good old road trip up (or down) the coast.

While in-vehicle chocolate egg consumption and glances at highway roadkill offer fleeting distractions, being confined to a car with your nearest and dearest for hours can test even the most robust of constitutions.

With this in mind, Sony has recently released an egg basket full of in-car entertainment products, designed to prevent you from having to communicate with any humans en route -- except for periodic requests to adjust the volume.

The most immersive of the entertainment options are the visual head units, which allow passengers to listen to music and watch video on a 7-inch monitor. There are two versions, each available from April and retailing at $1,999: the XAVW1 has a TFT touchscreen, MP3/WMA/DivX compatibility, three AV inputs and even comes with a karaoke function. (There's also a remote control, should the singing become truly unbearable.) The XAVC1 offers a motorised QVGA monitor, CD/MP3/DVD playback, two AV inputs and that blessed remote control.

For those not so keen on installing $2,000 worth of gadgetry into the dashboard of their aging Datsun, there are several audio-only head units at lower price points. $249 will get you the CDXGT260, which handles CDs, MP3 and WMA. Bluetooth bandits are catered for with the $449 MEXBT2500, which allows handsfree phone calls and audio streaming. Both are available now.