8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars
Great product. Needs more attention to detail., 1 Jan 2008
Generally very happy with the unit. Would I buy it again- I'd probably wait unit model 2 comes out becuase it would be better value for money and would probably include internet radio (this unit has provision for internet connection, when connected can look up track data from the web, so it can't be too hard to integrate internet radio.)
The sound is good. Sound styles: flat/rock/pops/jazz/ etc, but no individualisation (no problem to me).
I had prepared 400 hours of music to load on to the unit, which I did straight away. The unit spent the first five days analysing this unit for the x-DJ feature, leaving the unit in "standby mode" whilst doing this i.e. it will not power off completely. Initially I was very frustrated that when you power the unit off, the fan keeps running and it stays in standby mode. The fan is just about acceptably quiet when playing music, but is noticable when the unit is not playing music. I went as far as re-formating the hard disk, and loaded just 2 CD's, whereupon it took maybe half an hour to analyse the music and shut down fully. The x-DJ feature is good though. You end up listening to music you haven't heard in a while, and wonder why you never play it. I'd say we will use that function the most.
Other minor gripes:
The speaker cables are too short, as is the power flex, each being about 1 meter. The black plastic facia looks a bit cheap.
Not Sony's fault, but if you are a classical music amature (about half my music is classical), mp3 tags are a pain to deal with. You find that the tag "artist" variously might refer to the composer, the orchestra, the conductor, or the soloist. And the Genre: I got about 6 different versions of the genre "classical" in 6 different languages. Plus baroque/chamber/relegious/opera/ and a load of other genres I did not want. I spent quite a few hours sorting and re-working Genre/Artist on the PC before loading the music. But that would apply to any hard disk hifi. I would not recommend loading the music directly via the CD player in large quantities for the above reasons. Non classical music was better behaved, but even here some artists albums show up under different Genres for no apparent reason. (I'm using good old Microsoft's own database linked to Media Player. Bless! Perhaps Gracenote is better, but you would probably need the unit hooked up to the internet permanently for that, which I have not yet got.
I found it easy to set up the network with a cable, but I am connected to a proper server which I think did all the hard work for me. And I mess with computers a good bit. WiFi I have not yet got working. If you buy the Buffalo unit, but it is the model with "AI" at the end, and it does not work, there is a tiny switch on the side of the Buffalo. Try switching it to the "off" position. That way I got to connect to my local wireless network, But I'm still not making it on to the net wirelessly.
On turning on, it takes about 14 seconds to boot up, so switching on the the radio can be a bit frustrating- we all expect instant-on for radio. But you get used to it.