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iRiver H340 vs Sony Vaio Pocket (VGF-AP1L) MP3

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by Agincourt, Sep 12, 2005.

  1. Agincourt

    Agincourt
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    I am in the market for my first DAP. I would like it to hold most/all of my music collection, transfer my old vinyl and listen in the car/at work/away from home, but only rarely on public transport or 'on the move'. My requirements, more or less in priority order are:
    Ease of Use
    Capacity (at least 20Gb)
    Sound Quality
    Price
    Versatility
    Appearance and Size


    Research so far has pushed me towards either the iRiver H340 or the Sony Vaio Pocket. My main question is: is the iRiver worth paying an extra £60 for? Also, are there any other contenders I should be considering?

    Any suggestions/comments gratefully received.
     
  2. sirlukas

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    Look around for iAudio X5L, that's my top one now :thumbsup:
     
  3. Agincourt

    Agincourt
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    Thanks for the suggestion - not one I had considered. Does anyone have any personal experience (good or bad) of either of the players listed?
     
  4. sirlukas

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    I've just looked for the Vaio, and IMO it's not worth, it looks bulky, battery is not impressive (Sony has their own trick ;) ). I've never tried it, but would go for iRiver (if not preferably iAudio X5L 30GB)
     
  5. Agincourt

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    I've had a chance to look at the iAudio X5L and I'm quite keen on it now. It seems very similar to the iRiver. Can anyone point me to the main advantages of it?
     
  6. Agincourt

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    Well, I've taken the plunge and ordered the iRiver H340. The factors that finally influenced me were:
    Lots of adverse comments about Sony quality, plus the fact that the Vaio Pocket appears to have been discontinued.
    I didn't want to be tied to proprietary software.
    Price - the iAudio X5L was £30 more with 10Gb less. Plus it needs a dock. With the H340 you get a cradle, but you don't have to use it.
    Are ther any other H340 owners out there, with any tips/advice?
     
  7. extremelydodgy

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    Sorry to come in after your choice.


    The X5 is a more stable machine, definitely more portable and has a notably longer battery life, but the H300 has it's own attractions. It's got an excellent screen and more comfortable controls as well as the choice of MP3 / Ogg tag navigation or regular file-tree browsing. The X5 is faster to navigate through, has less 'tics' for all features and is being actively supported by Cowon. It's been a while since updated firmware for the H300 was released by iRiver.


    I dumped my iRiver in favour of the Cowon. I had some trouble making the decision, but in the end I'm happy with my choice. The X5 gives me less annoyances in daily operation, not to mention being far more pocketable.
     
  8. Ragnarok

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    Well, i stuck with my H340, I changed the battery and i now get about 26hours per charge out of it. I'll be sticking in a larger HD too as soon as i can get my hands on one. On the other hand Rockbox is working although in development with new and great features added all the time, for software in development it works great.
     
  9. Agincourt

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    I've had my H340 for 4 months now and am very happy with it. The User Interface is regularly slated by reviewers, but I've had no problems with it. The size (about the same size as a cassette tape box, but slightly thicker) is fine for me too. Battery life is OK, the capacity is fantastic and sound quality is well up to my expectations. I have tried using Rockbox but, apart from the ability to use it as a games machine and the faster boot up time, I prefer the iRiver firmware.

    My main dislikes are:
    Not being able to do anything else with it while listening to music.
    When it's plugged into the charger, it is possible to get shocks off it by touching some of the metal components. Not a particularly serious issue (it's only a small zap) but poor engineering.
     
  10. extremelydodgy

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    The thing is of course that once you get used to something that doesn't totally suck, it is generally usable... but without using others, you have no concept of whether things could work a lot better. The variability of opinions on the Internet is due to people saying "this is great to use" without having used anything else.


    Glad you're happy with it though, and Rockbox is far from complete.
     
  11. Agincourt

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    You are absolutely right of course. This is my first DAP and, while I did a lot of research on the internet, I didn't try any others out before I bought. I came in with the attitude that 'I want an iPod' because I didn't know what else was on the market. I also toyed with getting a Sony but was put off both because I didn't want to be tied into proprietary software and music formats. I probably should have looked a bit closer at the X5L but in the end decided that I could go on researching for ever and never reach a decision.
    Overall, the differences between all these DAPs is in the detail; different things will mean more to different people. The fact that your own choice may not be the universally acknowledged 'best' (not that there is any such beast) doesn't really matter as long as you are happy with it.
    I know Rockbox is not yet complete and I still use it regularly. It's fantastic to have a choice of firmwares and I'm looking forward to the day when it's better than the original in every respect.
    One last thought for anyone in the market for a DAP: don't underestimate the importance of gapless playback. 95% of my music doesn't need it, but the 5% that does is spoilt significantly without it. If you have lots of live music, classical or audio books, consider your need for gapless very carefully.
     
  12. extremelydodgy

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    That's true to an extent. It does not necessarily mean that you made the right choice based on what you really wanted though. Specs differ from published, and individual player usability, IMO one of the biggest difference between players, is not something you can pick up on the spec sheet. Most of the time, the devil is in the details. Not a rant, just a mention.
     
  13. Lewis123

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    If you get a iRiver H340 load Rockbox on it. I have one and with Rockbox you get gapless playback, I dont know if the Sony has that but if you listen to alot of dance mixes you dont want gaps between the tracks!
     
  14. Ragnarok

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    Yea Rockbox tries to playback as gaplessly as the file format alows. flac, wav,ogg playback gaplessly without cheeting(crossfading) or fault. MP3's playback pritty seemlesly most of the time but you might get a slight glitch inbetween certain tracks, if they don't have Lame's gapless tag.

    The latest build for the Iriver h300 is much better, alot more stable.
     

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