iriver announced quite a few players at CES 2008 and now they are starting to tickle out. First was the E100, now the Lplayer- next the Volcano and SPINN to follow in the next few months. I was a bit concerned that iriver lost its way with the E100 which was a rather disappointing low end player. But now they are back on track with a slick design and nice build quality typical to iriver.
The LPlayer is very much like the clix family of players sans a few of the more advance features. While the LPlayer is another great iriver product, there is not a whole lot of innovation, just a solid player offering another choice to the mix.
It’s a common fact that certain companies like to “borrow” designs when making MP3 players and with some it might be a step too far. iriver has normally been good at using their own designs, but that can’t be said for their new player, the Volcano T7. It’s so much like the Samsung U3 in both design and features one could think it’s the same player.
The T7 has a built in flat USB connector, small OLED screen, radio, equalizer and SRS WOW sound enhancements. It plays back MP3/WMA/ASF/OGG and comes in capacities of 4GB ($80) and 2GB ($55).
iriver is continuing to spit out the players shown at CES and now it’s time for the Spinn and the Lplayer. Considered to be an upgrade from the Clix 2 the Spinn will continue the AMOLED based players and upgrade the screen size and resolution among with other upgrades. The Lplayer can best be described as a bigger version of the S10 with the framed screen covering the entire player and navigation is handled by the D-click system.
The Spinn screen is now 3.2″ and has a resolution of 480×272 which means it will be very sharp and have better colors than any LCD based player due to the AMOLED screen. It will also have Bluetooth and support Adobe Flash and European customers can expect a DAB radio in there too. Battery life is average at 25/5 hours for audio/video respectively and the player will be available in 4, 8 and 16GB when it comes out in August.
The Lplayer is tiny, small and basically not very big. Imagine a cell phone screen in a plastic frame and that’s the Lplayer. The screen resolution is 320×240 which means it can still do pretty decent video and there’s also a radio in there. Like the Spinn it does 25 hours of audio while video playback is slightly lower at 4 hours. The Lplayer will launch in June according to iriver and will be available in 2, 4 and 8GB.
[Cnet|GenerationMP3 thanks Bhavik]
iriver presented a load of new players at CES this year and now another one of these has become official and available now in Korea. The iriver P.ple P10 is another technological marvel that may or may not ever see light outside of Asia.
The device has a 4″ 800×480 touch screen, 33GB 1.3″ HDD, flash lite support, internal speaker and TV out. It supports pretty much any video format you can throw at it including Xvid at up to 720×480 (DVD resolution) so the player should do wonders for watching videos. On the music front it does mp3, wma, FLAC, Ogg Vorbis, Wav and APE so it should be well covered there too. There’s also a pro version that features a DMB tuner, but that will definitely not make it to the US or Europe so all we can do is hope that the standard version will.
[iriver via GenerationMP3]
I have some strong words for the iriver E100 and to sum up my review in two blunt words: epic fail. By any other means it would have been just a mediocre MP3 player, but I use these harsh words because I expect much more from iriver.
It seems they realized their mistake to cheap out on the E100 and are revamping the player with an aluminum case and a better LCD screen. Additionally, they are getting rid of the external speakers- this being good news since they may make for a slimmer design and really the speakers were pretty weak by standards to begin with. So all in all it should be a very nice upgrade to be released sometime at the end of summer.
iriver has been known to experiment on new markets with devices such as the D20/D25 dictionaries. Today they announced a new navigation device which of course doubles as a PMP.
The NV Life has a 800×480 screen, DMB TV tuner, FM transmitter, password protection and player identification – so stolen players can be identified. Unfortunately, iriver’s standard lack of understanding for people that want more than half a movie on their player shines through on the NV Life too, as the device only comes in 2 or 4GB. A SD slot is present, but the seeming lack of SDHC support means that the player will have a maximum storage capability of 8GB. No word yet on pricing or availability, but it’s most likely going to be another Asia-only device.
[Iriver Korea via Engadget]
Iriver showed off many new devices at CES 2008 and from what I was told they actually plan on playing a bit more in the US market. An interesting device they showed off was the W7, with a 3” 260k color, 480 x 272 pixel touch screen. The player is flash based in 4GB and 8GB capacities with the option to add miniSD memory.
The W7 is a solid piece of hardware and an interesting interface that is basically a miniaturized media player typically found on a desktop. But, I think this player may only appeal to the hardcore gadget geek and one that is a big fan of a stylus interface.
The E100 will be iriver’s first player to be released in the US since the clix2, which I was very fond of. This player comes in 2GB, 4GB, and 8GB capacities in several different modern colors. Audio codec is supreme supporting all the major licensed and open source file types. Video codec support is also very good, but most of the time conversion is necessary to conform to the 320×240 262k color screen.
There is a lot of familiarity with this player and keeps well to the iriver style and functionality. Do however keep in mind that iriver is trying to reach the lower flash player market and in doing so they had to sacrifice slightly on quality. Read on for an in-depth look at the iriver E100.
iriver was the king of CES this year, introducing a whole range of new MP3 players. One of these – the E100 – will hit stores in Europe next week.
The feature set is quite good, with a 2.4″ 262k color 320×240 screen , 2, 4 and 8GB memory, a microSD slot, radio with recording, video, line-in and last but not least two 1W speakers. It has very good codec support which includes MP3 , WMA, OGG, ASF and FLAC audio formats, and MPEG4 SP, WMV9 and XviD SP video formats. A TXT text reader and an image viewer are also included.
The best part of this player might be the price. At 79€ (2GB), 99€ (4GB) and 129€ (8GB), it has a great bang for the buck factor.
Update: I just got word from iriver that they are shotting for a March launch in the US. -Grahm
[ Product page via GenerationMP3 ]
iriver had one of the coolest looking booth at CES and really was the only manufacturer that showed anything new and compelling. Walking behind the tent like structure you entered an ultra white and extremely well lit display area. It was a ultra modern and I would have expected to see the iriver reps wearing white lab coats. Still they knew their stuff and were quick to answer any questions.
Over the last few years iriver has been more of an enigma in the US by only releasing a handful of their products to the store shelves, keeping many of the really cool and compelling products back in Asian countries. However, iriver PR and two of the reps told me that the US will likely see a lot of what was on display and they will be making more of an effort to sell in the United States.
Below I have a rundown of the various players, a quick and dirty booth tour, and a video demo of the Unit 2.