323 of 338 people found the following review helpful
on 20 April 2013
I have been using the Walkman for four weeks now. I am swimming every second day for 1.5 hrs - all strokes but majorly front-crawl and backstroke and some fly and breaststroke also.
I'm a competing approx. four times a year. So, one could say I'm not a pro-athlete but not a pure amateur who swims for fitness purposes only.
I'm telling this to you so you know under what exact conditions the player is used and how it performs.
When I bought the player and used it for the first time, I was able to reproduce the malfunction other reviewers describe here.
If too much water gets into your ear it gets into the player too and as water isn't particularly good in transmitting sound waves, the volume goes down to a level that I would describe as: the TV/Radio is playing in the background.. It's there but you don't really pay attention to it.
You don't have to let the player dry out over night, with some firm tapping as described in the manual (don't be too shy.. it has to be quite firm without being too hard) you are able to get some of the water out immediately and continue at 75% of the maximum volume - which is quite a lot as the player gets very loud.
The second time I was using the player this issue happened to me much later in my swim-session when I tumble-turnded and pushed of the wall quite hard (We were doing 100m individual medley sprints - for those who wondered). One of the earpieces fell out and some water went in again, the volume went down and I was staying at the end of the lane tapping the water out for a minute or so. Adjusting the strap that gives additional tightness for the player helped and it didn't happen again until the end of the session.
AND ONCE YOU GOT STARTED:
Since then I never faced any severe problems or issues with the player. It took me a while to figure out how to fit it on properly but since than, swimming with music makes the training sessions much more fun and enjoyable.
ADDITIONAL OPERATING HINTS
- An additional hint would probably be to put the player on BEFORE you go into the pool as obviously water gets into your ear and you seal it in your auditory channel if you then put the player on.
- If the player slips off: adjust the neck strap to give the player extra tightness so it doesn't happen again. Additionally, try to get as much water out of your ears and the player as you can before you continue as otherwise, again, you seal the water in your ears and it gets into the player.
- If water gets into the player and the volume drops to a VERY low level, try to tap out some water as described in the manual. IT HELPS (even if it doesn't get out the water completely for the current session you're in).
- Try to find your right earpieces: I didn't mention it above, but between the first and the second time I used the player, I tried some of the earpieces. For me, the pre-fitted ones fit best. But it seems that you sometimes need a different size for your left and right ear.
I was struggling whether I should rate this player with 4 or 5 stars.
I decided to give it 5 as the initial problems weren't a malfunction of the player.
Here's why: If water gets in, the volume drops. Thats not a problem unique to this device, it's a problem called PHYSICS. Water is bad at transmitting sound-waves. As soon as the water gets out again, the player works fine.
This can happen to you with every other water-usable MP3 player.
Yes - one may say: Sony could do better ensuring the earpieces are sealed with your auditory channel to avoid water getting in. But hey - if you read the manual, they tell you pretty much everything that I just told you, i.e. if you read it, you know how to use it properly.
If you use it properly - it's brilliant:
- Nice sound quality
- You hardly notice that you are wearing it
- Good battery life
- Easy to use
Overall this Walkman is fantastic to make your swimming more fun!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 27 August 2014
This Walkman only worked for a month tops. It constantly needed to be reformatted (every couple of weeks) and the buttons stopped functioning properly. I never used it in the water because I couldn't trust the simple operation of the thing. I owned this thing for about 4 months and it finally stopped functioning all together. The shuffle, play, volume buttons seemed to all be stuck at the same time. The volume kept fading to nothing. When I tried to turn the volume up the shuffle on/ off would sound. Sometimes the set wouldn't even turn on. The ZAPPON function wouldn't turn off and would randomly just turn itself on even when no button was pushed. The charging of the set was horrible too. It would take several attempts of docking and undocking to get it to charge. My computers wouldn't recognize the USB frequently. So basically every problem this thing could have it had. It's not worth the money.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 2 July 2014
I got these as a present from my sister on Monday! Couldnt wait to wear them swimming today, tried all buds and got perfect ones, went swimming and the headphones kept falling out! Really disheartened by this!
Went away and googled if anyone else had this problem and most people said they fixed with securing with goggles but this did not work for me! So...i went and bought a swim cap and this is the best thing i did!!
I now put my headphones on, cap on top securing headphones underneath with ear pieces peeking out and then goggles over the top! They didnt move a mm!! So chuffed this product works coz when i was doing my lengths all i wanted was a bit of music and my friends husband had these and said they were great!!
Rated 4 out of 5 because of the initial fitting problem!! If you want these, expect to have to buy a swim cap also :-)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 11 July 2014
- Battery life is excellent, I charge it once a week. 10 minutes of charge gives you 1 hours of playback.
- The design is great, you don't need to worry about wearing clothes with pocket or carrying cases.
- There are no cables to get in the way of your exercise.
- Very easy to upload music to, just copy or drag & drop your mp3 files into the music folder.
- It really is waterproof, you can use it in the rain, you don't have to worry about your sweat and you can use it in the pool.
- Despite being very snuggly fit in my ears, it does not ever survive a swimming session without losing the sound because water got inside the player.
- If you do tumble turns when swimming, forget about this player. Even if you do it slowly and gently, water gets inside.
The only reason I'm giving it two stars is because it works well outside the pool. I bought the player to use it while I swim and it's just frustrating. Every single time, it completely loses its sound within 3-4 laps and in order to get my session done, I had to give up stopping and tapping it to get the water out so the sound comes back. I've followed all instructions, tried different buds to no avail. The player fits comfortably within my ears, it never falls off and I've never finished a session with water in my ears, which means the fit is fine. I'm afraid the problem is with the player itself taking water from the outside. When that happens, what used to be a good mp3 player becomes a very expensive pair of ear plugs, nothing more.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 29 May 2014
So, there are quite a few unfair negative reviews for this product. I don't feel the reviews fairly reflect the product, but it is NOT a well designed product for competent swimmers.
What we have is a highly portable sports MP3 player. Technically it is an excellent, well designed product. For sports you want something which is lightweight, long lasting, easy to use and provides you with freedom. This fits all of the boxes (in my opinion).
My issue with this product is its marketing strategy. For cycling, running, rowing, and various other sports this product allows you to leave your phone at home and go exercise with no dangling wires, and no worries about a spot of rain. However, it is not marketed solely as a sports player - the focus of the product is that you can submerge it in water, the perfect MP3 for a middle-long distance swimmer?
No! As many reviewers have noted, the player has a big problem with the headphones. They fall out easily underwater, and as soon as the speaker part gets wet, you won't be hearing any sound from it. In my opinion, the orientation of the main MP3 parts is fundamentally wrong. As water pushes around it, there is a large surface are which resists. If the MP3 bodies were the other way around, there would be less resistance. Also, as they would be put under pressure, they would be forced in tighter against the ear. At any moderate pace (even around 2 minutes for 100m), you will get too much resistance for the MP3 and it will pull the earbuds out.
I tried the flanged ear pieces as recommended. They are uncomfortable to wear but do prevent the MP3 from coming out. Then you need to worry about the next problem. With a good swimming technique, your arms should be coming very close, if not brushing your ears as your arms move (even with Breaststroke). With the MP3 in, you will have to alter your technique to avoid brushing it straight out!
- This MP3 player IS good for general sports.
- It is NOT suitable for competent swimmers. If your arms come close to your head in your swimming technique, then even with a hat, this MP3 player will either be uncomfortable to wear, or it won't work at all.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 5 May 2014
After ummming and arrring so long about waterproof headphones to go along with my swimming sessions I finaly decided to get these ones. The size and colour were the first thing I teally likes about them when I first got them. Then it was super easy to put music on and easy to use. They fitted well around my ears when walking around the house and in the gym... However, when I got to the pool I did find a number of issues. Firstly I would not reccommend these headphones to people who have small ears and generally little space between the cap and the top of the earphone. It was very difficult trying to negotiate between the flap of the cap by my ears and the curve of the headphone going around my ear to fit securely. In the end I ended up having to put my cap on over the top of the ear piece which in itself wasnt ideal as there was now a lot of pressure in my ears from the headset pushing in, from the cap. The reason why I had to cover the headphone with the cap is because it wasnt quite fitting in my ear and if i pushed off the wall or had a particular tight stroke then the ear piece would come out of my ear... Very annoying, when you need to get your swim done in the middle of your lunch break. I am also not very happy with the level of volume. You seem to be able to hear more of the music if you stay under water but if you are swimming the strokes that require you to lift your head above the water to breathe, the music keeeps dropping out and you really dont get much out of it. I am convinced that it is more the fact that I have a smaller head and that people with more head space will not have so much of an ordeal.
These are certainly waterproof though... but for me I would use them less for amateur swimming and more for lying on a beach or on a lilo on holiday and not fearing that your ipod or mp3 would get wet and damaged. So up to you really.. Also, if you are a pretty slow swimmer, and keep your head above the water, less of dynamic movement then this would be great for you.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 17 September 2013
Light,it doesn't fall off and the sound is superb, much much nicer than the old model which I had to replace. I recommend it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 30 October 2014
I don't know if we were unlucky but we bought this as part of my sons birthday present who swims 6 times a week. It worked great out of the water and was easy to charge and load up with music but the first time he used it in the pool the sound coming from one channel almost completely disappeared. I gave the ear piece a brisk shake incase it was a drop of water in the bud but to no avail. Once it had dried out completely after a day in the dry again it worked fine again so our guess was this unit was just not completely sealed properly. Amazon were excellent as always and refunded our purchase on return without any quibble. Five stars for our seller and Amazon but only two for this item.
on 2 May 2014
I'd seen a colleague with these on the treadmill and thought they were neat and a much better idea than having wired headphones that I always catch sending my iPhone flying. It was also a real bonus to find they are waterproof enough for pool swimming; however, they had mixed reviews when using in this medium, generally airing on the negative. For running cycling and general gym work I found them fine; however, swimming not so. I tend to get in the pool and just do lengths of front crawl, I'm not an athlete, more a general fitness person and therefore the speed and intensity of my workouts reflect this. My first trial lasted only a couple of lengths before one earplug washed out, followed a couple of lengths later by the other. Unfortunately, when these get water into the earpieces all sound is lost. Despite banging them as recommended, the volume and quality was really poor so they resided at the side of the pool whilst I finished my swim. Taking them home and during them out on a radiator returned them to normal without issue. Subsequent use yielded the same result with varying degrees of success, 10 lengths of a 25m pool was the best I achieved and I found them to be a hinderance to my sessions rather than an enhancement. Sony have a bit of work to do here sadly, as mentioned they're fine on dry land if you don't want trailing wires and I'm sure if you're a leisurely swimmer using social breast stroke they'd be fine once you master the art of fitting them. I'll keep using them in the gym but have now ordered a set of Finis Neptune bone conduction phones for swimming only, I'll see how we get on with these.
on 19 March 2014
I bought this MP3 player because I was so desperately bored swimming, but had resolved to swim for an hour 3 times a week.
Below are some points that I've noted:-
- I spent a long time making sure the earplugs fitted perfectly (they supply extra ones) before getting into a pool after reading some of the reviews on here about leaking earplugs letting water interfere with the sound. I had no problem at all with them falling out or water getting in, the sound quality was excellent.
- I made sure the black neck band was tightened to stop them from moving about when I was swimming, they stayed in place perfectly, though I had to wear my long hair in a ponytail (which I do to swim anyway) for them to be most comfortable.
- They were easy to charge up and a case of drag and drop to add music (or use Windows Media Player to sync with a playlist).
- I found that music was great to listen to while swimming; but I also enjoyed listening to audio books. I've never listened to audio books before and I'd always want music in the gym; but my swim sessions are more about relaxing than going hell for leather, and despite never having listened to an audio book before in my life; I've purchased quite a few now.
- Time seems to go much faster in the pool with music or a book to listen to!
- The headphones are sturdy and the cable feels like it's good quality, they do not feel cheap at all.
- The power button is the only thing that I don't like about these headphones; it is a bit fiddly and I kept pressing 'stop' on the MP3 player before I turned it off, so when I turned it on and the music didn't start I was confused and so kept turning it on and off again. This was mainly due to the fact that I was pausing the music before turning it off, and that I was trying to turn it on them while it was on my ears already. I started to turn it on before putting it onto my ears, and within a few uses I'd got used to the controls enough to be able to manipulate them while wearing the headset.
Overall, this is the best MP3 player I've ever owned, most versatile and comfortable!