14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A great music player with a few flaws,
This review is from: Cowon X7 160GB Portable Media Player - White (Electronics)
The Cowon X7 is supposed to be the "best MP3 player in the world", and it is easy to see why it has been given this tag. It has a massive capacity which is on a par with an Apple iPod classic 160GB - Silver, it has superb sound quality, which is what Cowon are famous for, and it has an astoundingly long amount of playback power (103 hours for music and 10 hours for video). It also has a great deal of features, such as an FM radio, a document viewer, a microphone, external speakers and various other nice touches.
The sound is a good place to start, It's phenomenal. Obviously the EU limits the volume of MP3 players now, so don't expect the loudness to be anything higher than normal, but the quality is fantastic. There is also a dizzying array of EQ settings you can use to edit the sound to compliment your music, which is very impressive. Another nice surprise was that along with my CD rips and Amazon MP3 songs, my iTunes store purchases actually worked on this player, which is something I did not expect! Video quality is not bad, but not brilliant, but I want this player for music rather than video, so it's not something that really bothers me too much (but a higher resolution screen would have been nice).
The external speakers are another impressive feature, and can reach quite loud volumes if you crank it up using the player's external volume controls. For small speakers they pack quite a punch! The microphone feature is a great added bonus too, and records much better than I thought it would.
Some have cited the unusual stretched-out album artwork effect the X7 creates when album covers are present, but this does not bother me personally. The only things that have proved to be negatives for me are the menu navigation (not particularly intuitive), and the software, which came bundled on a minidisc in the box. When you select "Music" at the main menu, you are taken to a Now Playing screen of the track you last played, and from there you have to press "Open" to get to the folder the track is contained in, and then "Up" or "Top" to navigate through the various categories of file storage (eg. Artist, Album, Genre, Year, etc). I'm getting used to it, but it's a bit clunky to say the least.
I really wanted to get the JetAudio Media Center set up so that I could add album cover art and edit other aspects of my music on the X7, so I tried to install the software. It installed and I then tried to get it running about 3 times on a playback + music management function, and it kept closing, my laptop informing me that it had encountered a problem and had to close, then annoying me for ages by pestering me to email Cowon about the problem. On about the fifth try of installing and uninstalling the pesky software, I managed to get it going, but found that it still had glitches which made it close down in the same way once you did something like connect the player, or try to edit an ID3 Tag. I'm probably going to uninstall it yet again and try and download it from the internet and see if the bugs have been fixed. I really hope so!
So some absolutely brilliant postives outweigh some slightly annoying negatives. If you are an audiophile and want to be able to carry around a massive amount of music and video on the go, then this could well be the player for you. If you want more, like Wi-Fi, internet browser, and more features this is probably not up your street. As it happens, it's pretty much just what I was looking for.