1. Join Now

    AVForums.com uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

NW-HD5: some serious questions before I buy

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by preferred, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    First off I'm amazed that there are so many MP3 players out there and none of them seem to fit the bill. So far the NW-HD5 looks like it's the best on paper but I've got a few questions that I would like resolved before I invest in it. And none of the reviewers seem to want to get on the bad side of Sony.

    1)First off how's the battery life. I know what Sony says on paper, but how often do you need to recharge it? I felt burnt when I bought a 1st Generation ipod and it didn't even last the day. But what about turning it on and off and all that? Does it keep its charge after being started and stopped successively? My Sony MP3 CD player lasts for a whole week before it needs to be recharged.
    For usage, I'll be primarily using mp3s which are VBR high and won't bother with ATRAC

    2)I know that Sony has terrible software and I've already found a way around it called mp3 file manager . But how do you make playlists? Is it via SS or is it in the player itself?

    3)Is there a sound gap between MP3 tracks?

    4)Is there an on and off button on the player?

    5)does the headphone jack support a Sony remote?

    Thanks in advance
    Sterling
     
  2. Sasso

    Sasso
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Hi preferred, ill try to answer your questions.

    1) The battery life isnt as good as I expected. 40 hours with Atrac 48kbps, and not touching or changing the song at all, and no backlight, then they probably added a few hours to round it up to 40. In reality its less than half that, with atrac 256 (48 is stupidly bad quality), changing the tracks, backlight, sound enhancement (to make it sound near decent) and maybe playing with shuffle. My minidisk took a single AA battery which lasted so long, I think I replaced it after about a month with everyday use. This one will last about 3 days, I just got a new phone with bells and whistles and its battery last longer than the HD5's even though im using the camera and loudspeaker all the time. Having said that it probably has the longest life out of all the DAP's out today. (Dont have a figure on the sony A3000 but its most likely just as exaggerated.

    2) The Software isn't terrible, it is just resource hungry and a little slow, It still gets the job done as long as you are patient, and im sure your computer is better than mine, i dont even have usb2 but it still does the job. I dont recommend using MP3 file manager as it has an extreme lack of features. There is a feature to put the software on the HD5 itself so where you are somewhere else and want to transfer songs and play them without installing SS on their computer then you can just run mp3FM and you can add things.
    Playlisting is pretty good, but simple, no ratings or most played or anything yet. You can bookmark songs on the player but only individual songs and its tedious to do many. I highly recommend using ss over mp3 FM.
    Hopefully the New connect player software for the A3000 is compatible with the HD series, if not many people will be very peed off. So if it is and its actually good then use that.

    3)Yes Mp3 is not gapless like is Atrac. The gap is small but its there. VBRs are crap on the HD5 because it looses track of the time progress, if you pause or fastforward it will go crazy and loose its position, it tries hard to find it again but never does. Edit - The sound is unaffected, only the timer is affected.
    I would use Atrac, if sony did something right, it is their sound compression, it sounds excellent at any decent bitrate. It takes less battery using Atrac and also it is perfectly gapless providing you rip directly from cd. Atrac has more compatability with the EQ too, but the best sounding EQ (digital sound presets) is still available for Mp3 so its not a big problem.

    4) To turn the player on you press any button, to turn it off you leave it stopped for 2 seconds (a little longer actually but feels like less) or you can just hold down the stop button and it switches off. It will eventually switch off even if pause is selected which is a big pain in the butt when you have shuffle selected especially. It is really annoying when it turns off so quickly, i turn it on (which is has to load of a few seconds) and dont touch anything because im doing something while im waiting for it to load, then i look back and its switching off (which also loads, or shuts down). THis all wastes power.

    5) Yes the headphone jack supports sony remotes just like cdplayers and mds but with slightly limited compatability, the most important features are there though.
     
  3. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Sasso,

    Man that was great! It's a shame that the battery life isn't all that, but well, 3 days is better than 1/2 a day. With regard to the ATRAC1/3, I have nothing against the format, but the problem lies in ripping and compressing everything again. (I back up all my mp3s because 60+ GB of mp3s takes a long time to rip with EAC) It's too bad that there's a little sound gap too, but it just seems like they could just buffer the next song and just cut that pause out, like so many software players.

    With regard to dealing with VBR, that's quite strange. the Sony mp3 cd player that I have has no problem with them and I guess I'll have to see if I can test it out for myself or wait for another generation of player which will hopefully deal with the seek issue.

    In all, I have to say that it's quite a sexy little toy and while there are a lot of positives with the design, but there are also a few negatives regarding Sony being both an electronics manufacturer and a Recording label. If mp3fm is so simple, why does SonicStage need so many resources unless it's encrypting and fingerprinting lossy music? Perhaps a shiny new paycheck will help me overcome my reservations.

    And thanks for your reply,
    preferred
     
  4. Sasso

    Sasso
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    No probs.
    Thats a lot of music to rip (slowly) again. Unless you have some time on your hands just keep them as mp3.
    Gapless MP3s is more than possible, take for example the Vaio pocket story (courtesy of johan the button crack master), the vaio pocket music player couldnt play mp3's gaplessly but after lots of bugging sony they released a firmware making it perfectly gapless...so it is possibly and sony definately made the HD5 gapfull intensionally, i suppose to force us to use atrac.
    All we can do right now is pray that sony come to their senses and realise that life is about quality not quantity (or making money).

    The battery life should be fine...not that you have much option to go higher since it is the highest.

    Yeah i still think its the best looking DAP out today, shame sony had to screw some of it up. I doubt the new A3000000000000 will be much of an improvement, it doesn't take experienced engineers to come up with the idea of searching for Artists and albums instead of just tracks, It was the first thing i thought of when I heard of the original feature, ok i am hopefully going to become an engineer but honestly a ten year old could have come up with that idea.

    Regarding the VBR time stuffing up, thats simply unacceptable, the zens can fast forward them perfectly, sony again were probably aware when they 'accidently forgot' to make it work properly.

    Yeah thats why people moan about sonicstage, its just so slow and unstable. But fingers crossed the new connect player software is compatable and all our problems are washed away.

    My suggestion is wait till people get hold of the new sony A3000 and see if any issues are resolved, otherwise get a HD5 (then help us pray for a firmware update).
     
  5. Steven

    Steven
    Senior Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Messages:
    36,455
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Ratings:
    +6,232
    I'm fond of Sonic Stage. I've gotten used to its faults :D :rolleyes:
     
  6. spawn_e_git

    spawn_e_git
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2005
    Messages:
    30
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +0
    I've checked this forum out since yesterday as I was told by the salesman at my local Sony Centre that there was a code on the internet to override the volume thing. Searching for this brought me to this forum.

    After reading all the related posts here, I went and brought the HD5 today, As I type this I am transferring all my music onto the unit.

    I have also got a MPman HD2 which is probably the biggest pile of pooh I have ever owned. I'm hoping for much more from the HD5.

    I let SonicStage search for music files and it's put all the sound bites from Half Life II and everything else on there! Doh!
     
  7. drmoze

    drmoze
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    196
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ratings:
    +1
    I can't agree here. The biggest fault I have with SS is that it won't rip my CDs and I can't edit file info without it constantly freezing, and it won't transfer files to my 3-week-old-and-empty HD5.

    Sorry, but that's a fault I find it hard to overlook! :( ;)

    The silence is deafening... :mad: :mad:
     
  8. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    drmoze,

    I hear ya, I had a sony MZ-1 and Open-MG was what really burned me on any type of Sony audio player that's bundled with software. It never worked properly and never allowed me to change the CDDB settings. I'm worried that I'm going to be seduced by a similar device, but burnt by the same problems. So I'm naturally skeptical about being locked down with sonic stage and then again with "connect."

    "They change the name but it still works the same"

    It's too bad that it's the only decent player that does pretty much does everything that I want has a huge downside. And that is that it doesn't truly support VBR mp3s or allow me to change my musical preferences easily and conveniently. How hard is it to just make the player function as a simple storage device so that I can just drop in what I want and delete as I see fit. Or use the same technology that's in their other devices to handle VBR?

    < rant >
    I get the feeling that if Sony stopped trying to treat their customers like criminals, they'd have a much better product and then perhaps people would have higher confidence in potentially buying music directly from Sony. It seems to me that OpenMG, Sonic Stage and in the pipe Connect all try to open people up to the iTunes device manager/point of sale business model, but they're so damn paranoid that they can't even get their software to jive with anything. Granted, I haven't used Sonic Stage, but every type of media player that's trying to emulate a file manager for an external device has failed miserably for me on my PC. The only thing that I trust and would like to use is explorer or, with my mp3 CD player, Nero. Drag and drop the files that I want to into a file structure that makes sense to me, and is simple enough for a simple device to handle.
    < /rant >
     
  9. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Just to round this thread off, here's what came of it all.

    I was really looking at the NW-HD5, but when it came down to it all, it didn't do what I wanted it to do.

    1)I didn't want to be tied down with sonic stage. I downloaded it to try it before I spent the money and well it siezed before it could import my whole library. Then when I did use it, it didn't grab me as responsive. But then again, I have a rather well organized file structure for my music, so I'm not so interested in a program re-organizing what I've already done--especially when it does it it's way and not my way.

    2) the battery life was a huge bonus, but the more I looked into it, the worse it performed in the way that I was going to use it. It's not a true MP3 player. It's an ATRAC player modded to be an MP3 player. The battery life halves when it deals with mp3s. Also not being able to handle VBR's properly made it a big turnoff. I encode everything with Lame VBR so my entire library doesn't work with it.

    3) I don't like the fact that there are problems with the keys.

    The good things about it:

    It's the most attractive and compact dap out there. I love the look and the size and, aside from the keys, the sturdy build of it. It has about the right size for storage and the display is easy to read. And the navagation is Sony perfect.

    My personal solution:

    I found the iAudio X5L. It's from a Korean company, Cowon, that I never heard of before, but once I heard about it I started reading reviews and checking out the battery life. Essentially, it's a dap for nerds who like there files where they put them and also supports almost every codec for music (ALMOST) mp3, ogg, wma, wav, FLAC!!!!. and video MP4

    The battery life is amazing. 35hrs playing mp3s and it's near gapless. The build quality is amazing. It's even strudier than the NW-HD5, but it weighs a bit more too. Navagation is very easy--once you get used to it. But it's all handled by a nice click feedback mini-joystick. It's very customizeable and acts very much like a computer os. Also it's seen as a mass storage device, so you can just drag and drop whatever you want to into it and then plug it into another computer to move your files. Finally a dap that doesn't treat you like a criminal!

    I have to say that this machine suits my own personal needs and I just wanted to put this out there to people, like myself, who want more control over their dap, but want every ounce of performance.

    --Preferred
     
  10. SilentLucidity

    SilentLucidity
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    33
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    hi..new memeber here
    Bought a hd5 couple of weeks ago, been browsing this forum so far for volume issues and general feedback. Like the player (it's my first mp3 player) , hate SS with a passion it's almost holy..what a piece of @$##, it has to be deliberate, noone can design something that bad and release it without knowing..

    If I had seen the software before buying I would never have purchased it..Forgetting the various freezes, the sloooowness, the computer crashes, the endearing quality of not shutting down properly , the piece of c@@# has stopped recognising the player so I can do no transfers.. If it did this on my desktop , fair enough maybe a fluke but it's happened on my laptop too..both computers can see the players in explorer and the little viao drag and drop thing still works but SS no longer sees my player or connects to it...

    Any help appreciated!!
     
  11. dissembled

    dissembled
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    The X5 was my second choice. But the NWHD5 player is rated to be the BEST SOUNDING player in the world. I know that I'll think this whenever I use the X5. Not having the best sounding player in your hands. BLAH!

    Lucidity, you'll need to authorize your player in order to connect the device to other computers.

    I don't get why it doesn't work for any computers. You must have used one to access it the first time right?



    Also, it's good to know that enough RAM makes SonicStage actually likeable. :)
     
  12. KiNeL

    KiNeL
    Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2005
    Messages:
    333
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Essex
    Ratings:
    +7
    Just a word on the HD5 battery life.

    Using 128k CBR MP3 and total random play my battery will do 24 hours and don't forget it's also replaceable
     
  13. KiNeL

    KiNeL
    Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2005
    Messages:
    333
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Essex
    Ratings:
    +7
    Just been reading some reviews on the X5 and it looks like a nice device but the battery life seems to be quoted much lower than 35 hrs.

    i.e. http://www.dapreview.net/content.php?review.201 says 12.

    Won't be swapping my HD5 just yet !
     
  14. SilentLucidity

    SilentLucidity
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    33
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Dissembled...authorise? how? You are right it worked fine up to a point then I got rid of my temp files etc..and since it will not connect.. on the laptop it just stopped responding without me having done anything... however I have not tried it again on the laptop since it stopped.
     
  15. KiNeL

    KiNeL
    Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2005
    Messages:
    333
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Essex
    Ratings:
    +7
    I have no problem transferring files with SS to my HD5 from any of 3 machines at my disposal, 2 PC's and a laptop.

    OK the library is different on each and I cannot transfer back but that is of no concern to me at all.

    I have not "authorised" my HD5 and I think that's only neccessary if you want to sync your library on multiple machines, again of no interest to me.
     
  16. dissembled

    dissembled
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Deleting your TEMP files seems to have caused the problem.
    Contact Sony about the issue. Lets see if their techs are competent enough.

    This similar problem happened to me too after I deleted stuff from the lappie that I thought wasn't needed.

    I had to exchange it for a new one. I'm sure that readding something to your registry however would be enough for the device to work properly again.

    http://esupport.sony.com/EN/feedback/emailform-cons.html

    EDIT:
    Do you have your recycle bin currently set to receive 'deleted' items? If you do, then simply restore the files from the bin.
     
  17. SilentLucidity

    SilentLucidity
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2005
    Messages:
    33
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    okay thanks dissembled..I do not think I have the stuff in my recycle bin since it was actually through ss that I deleted.. that function you get under advanced settings.. ohh and I had deleted all the songs from my library too... my folly I guess since I just discovered that getting the music back on my laptop from hd5 so I could re-organise it is now impossible due to copyright thing :( .

    Interesting point about the registry though, I will check the values there.. I am playing around with the idea of just reinstalling it since on laptop it is working now...just the pc is still screwey!!
     
  18. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    iAudio has two models x5 and x5L both in the 20 and 30 gb variety. Check out the battery life of the "L" it's expensive, but it's worth it. The x5 20gb is about $299 USD the x5L 30gb is about $ 399 USD --Ouch!, but at least I got what I wanted.

    --Preferred
     
  19. preferred

    preferred
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Good luck to all those out there who are stuck with Sonic Stage. There is a simpler program that I think was posted further up in the post.
     

Share This Page

Loading...