Sony Walkman NWZ-B153F Review

Sony is a company that is famous for the Walkman series since it released the first cassette Walkman about three decades ago. The first MP3 player of the company is NW-MS11 and it was based on flash. It was incapable of playing MP3s and it suffered from slow transcoding problems. The B series Walkman prove that Sony is the leader in manufacturing portable media players. The NWZ-B153F is easy to plug, to load the tracks and to playback with great sound quality. These are all done through USB. It is available for a cost of $72.

Features

The NWZ-B153F measures 90.9 x 23.3 x 15.2 mm in dimension and weighs around 28 grams. It includes a headphones and a rechargeable battery. The display is of 3 lines and is backlit with 4 red LEDs. The player lacks clear stereo and bass, but possesses a 5 band equalizer. It uses the categories such as released year, genre, album, playlists, artist, all songs and folder to search the tracks. It play music in the repeat shuffle, repeat a song, repeat and normal modes. It can record and play MP3s, drag and drop, bass boost, record voice, play WMA files and hold. There is a FM tuner and a power illuminator. The memory is of 4GB and there is high speed data transfer with the USB port. the included battery provides a life of 18 hours of continuous music playback.

Design

There a variety of shapes as far as the MP3 players are concerned. The USB form factor is the oldest and most common design. Already, Samsung and Apple have provided players with this design. the NWZ-B153F also has the USB form factor but is equipped with a memory of 2 GB or 4 GB. The device lacks the navigational controls and uses a jog dial instead. There is a big button on the middle of the dial for play or pause. There is a removable protective flap for the USB on the right of the dial. The flap is of the same color as the player.

The monochrome display of 3 lines is surrounded by a black glossy material that competes with the aesthetics of the player. The display is small but it is readable in almost all the situations. The interface is the usual one found in the Walkmans. It is simple and straightforward. The home menu has 4 icons to open the Music Library, Voice, Settings and FM radio. It can browse the tracks through the folders. There is no other new feature in the interface.

There are two volume control buttons, a record button and a button to select the bass or the mode of playback. There are 2 buttons on the front, one is for activating the ZAPPIN feature and the other is to navigate through the menu. The dial is rotated clockwise to go to the next track while it is rotated anti clockwise to go to the previous tracks. The play or pause button can also be used as the Enter button when navigating through the menu with the dial.

Once the player is connected to the computer, is will be recognized as a USB memory drive. The files can be added to it by simple drag and drop process using the Windows Explorer or by using the Media Player. NWZ-B153F can play only MP3 files. The playlists cannot be created directly from the player. They have to be created only using the Windows Media Player while the device is connected.

Performance

The complete charging of the device takes about an hour while the Quick Charge feature requires a charging time of just 3 minutes to provide a playback of about 90 minutes. The ZAPPIN feature allows you to browse the music library by listening to short samples of each and every song.  The audio quality is good. The headphones that came with the package is not very good as it lacks punch. The red LEDs around the jog dial are illuminated once the bass is activated. These also glow as per the beat of the music. This feature consumes more power however. The battery provides a life of up to 18 hours but this reduces to 9 hours when the visual candy is turned on.

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