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Sony HD series and in-line remotes

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by Gemini-Phoenix, Aug 14, 2005.

  1. Gemini-Phoenix

    Gemini-Phoenix
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    Pretty much most Sony Mini-Disc players came with a digital remote. Most higher end Sony Cd Discman's came with them too, as did the HD1...

    So why the hell did they not include a digital remote with either the HD3 or the HD5?


    These are hi-tech gadgets, and if they felt that cheap models of Mini-Disc were worthy of an in-line remote, then why did they decide not to include them with the HD3 / HD5?


    I searched through my drawers to find my old MZR55 remote. That had limited functionability with my HD3, so I then looked again. Ah ha, my DE-J01 Discman remote... I tried, but again, limited functionability. One last hope - The MZN10 Mini-Disc remote. Great! it worked. Just. Pretty much most the functions worked, including the "Group" button, but no digital display. I guess you can't have everything. :rolleyes:


    I enquired about obtaining a separate specific remote from Sony, but they informed me that they do not make an in-line remote for either of these models. I then turned to eBay, and what do I find...?

    I find loads of sellers selling brand new RM-MC35ELK's, and also advertising that they do indeed work with the HD3 and HD5... ~ Anyone else got one of these? Are their statements correct? Do they indeed work with the HD3 / HD5? With full compatibility, including digital display?
     
  2. extremelydodgy

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  3. shadowritten

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    My assumption is that, because these new devices are so small and lightweight (lighter, certainly, than the old MD players), and because they're designed for ease of use single-handed, Sony decided a seperate remote was unnecessary. Sure, they've subsequently endorsed a couple of existing remotes just to appease those who want them, but as with their attitude to ATRAC being 'superior' to every other codec, they doubtless take a similar view when it comes to the need for remotes on essentially hand-held devices. Perhaps their view is: 'CD discman/MD player = bulkier and heavier, ergo, remote required as standard.' But not so for the NW-HD ... series.

    Personally, now that my HD5H is securely in its little pink case, I find a remote a superfluous requirement. I can slip the unit easily in and out of my pockets, operate everything swiftly and simply, and frankly, wouldn't want to be carrying around any more hardware than is strictly neccessary. But that's just me, of course ...
     
  4. Gemini-Phoenix

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    You say that, but my Mini-Disc MZN10 is a lot lighter than the HD5. It is 1cm shorter in length, but 1cm longer in width, and is the exact sam thickness as the HD3 too.

    I would have thought they would've given you a remote on a unit which costs £250 (Well, my HD3 did at the time I bought it, I think they are £199 now) ~ Still, I have seen £125 Mini-Disc Walkman's with remotes...


    And I am sure that many people don't actually walk around with their Walkman in one hand all of the time. Most people use the conveniency of "Pockets". A remote is also a one handed device...
     
  5. shadowritten

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    I've owned numerous DAPs/Walkmans etc, some with remotes. And always, I find myself mired in a mass of annoying cables!! Headphones, remote, the stringy thing that comes on the pouch some DAPs are bundled with - it did my head in! That's why I'm pretty ambivalent about remotes, now. If it's easier to pop my toy in and out of my pocket in a few seconds while on the move - and do everything I need to - then a remote is just an added nicety that I probably won't ever use. But, again as I said, that's just me ...
     
  6. ak47wong

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    Yeah, who knows. You're right, almost all their MD Walkmans and most of their CD Walkmans come with a remote control of some sort, but not the HD5. Doesn't make any sense. But, hey, you get a "carrying case", even if it's one that cost them about 50c to make :)

    Andrew
     
  7. Gemini-Phoenix

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    The remotes for some devices are invaluable!!!

    I have a Sony D-EJ01 Discman, and that does not even have a display on the unit itself. You are forced to use the remote, but it's a pleasure to use as it is nice and red and has all the functions you need on a Discman.
     
  8. shadowritten

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    So, like one of the iAudio DAPs, then? Yeah, in those circumstances, I'm with you on the need for a remote :smashin:
     
  9. Gemini-Phoenix

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    I think they wanted to keep the d-EJ01 as slim as possible. It was the first true "All round" Discman as well, and has a unique "Slot-in" mechanism for the discs (A la car Cd players) ~ There's not really anywhere for a display to go without ruining the whole feel of the unit.

    The simple functions, such as play / stop / FF / RW all have tiny buttons on the unit, so you can navigate without the remote, but it's so much easier with it.

    The D-EJ01 was also (So I believe) the first Discman to use the Cd text feature too, so the text on the Cd (If it has it) would appear on the remote. Obviously without it you don't get to see the song titles scrolling across the screen.


    I also know that the D-EJ01 remote was 100% compatible with Mini-Disc players out at that time, including the MZR55, but it doesn't seem to want to display information when used with newer Mini-Disc's or the HD series...
     
  10. KeanosMagicHat

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    There is a simple answer to this Sony have been looking for ways to cut corners on this range since launch.

    The NW-HD1 used excellent materials for superior build quality but did not have a remote to help keep the price down.

    As the build quality on subsequent models has decreased the price has also dropped so no remote has been included on these models either.

    So it's all down to price / profit.
     
  11. Gemini-Phoenix

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    Regarding build quality ~

    I know what you mean, as the HD3 really feels very "Hollow" compared to the HD1. It's almost as if there is nothing inside.

    I was impressed with how well the MZN10 Mini-Disc was built. Very posh. But other high-end products (Such as the D-EJ01 Discman, which retailed at £300 when it came out) was really shabby in terms of how it was put together.


    I have yet to find a fault with many other of my Sony products though. Well, apart from my phone, but I guess Sony Ericsson are a different faction...


    I have found that they tend to let themselves down when it comes down to little things such as battery compartment flaps or buttons / switches...


    I was also surprised that the HD3 didn't come with a padded case like most Mini-Disc's tend to have done in the past... Instead you get some 50c piece of fabric with a hole in one end, and a slit in the other. Hardly going to protect it if you drop it... Although, it does fit snugly and protects from minor scratches..
     
  12. Steven

    Steven
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    Well a remote is somewhat clumsy to navigate several gb of music...

    The 3 lined display one is slightly bulky...

    I have posted this before: Sony are losing money in consumer electronics department. Only the games division is giving them some money. And even then, Sony now have to spend the bucks on PS3 R & D, not to mention manufacture it in say 6 months? And consoles are nearly always sold at a loss, otherwise they'd be too expensive

    So thats why you get a cheap piece of fabric for protection. Saying that though, even if they did provide a foam one, I'd still go out and spend £10-£20 on a (likely) better case

    And the CEO of Sony in general is now a welshman (all previously Jap) who apparently has "radical" plans to make decent profit again....

    And I'm sure becoming No1 in portable music player market again is one of them. How? Sony are going with the better batt and small size factor, but have to brush up SS and other niggles

    I held a HD1 and it felt solid. My HD3 is OK but obviously feels of a lower standard metal body. And we all know of the HD5's build quality. Sony have to cut corners somewhere. But I don't feel the need for a remote.

    Also, with mostly casual people buying music DAPs, they'll of course compare x player to the iPod - which doesn't have a remote, so its not like people will be put off Sony for not providing a remote

    And a remote is prob unnecessary for a video DAP
     
  13. shadowritten

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    Broadly agree with this. Sony will only return to the build quality of their heyday once they're back on top. Which they will be; Apple is such a one-trick pony ... <ducks for cover from Apple fans>
     
  14. ak47wong

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    Careful there, shadow. You're turning into a raving lunatic :)
     
  15. shadowritten

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    Gibber, gibber, twitch, twitch ... who, me? ;)
     
  16. Gemini-Phoenix

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    So very very true. It has only done so well because it didn't really have much competition in that market until Sony finally admitted that Mini-Disc's were not doing as well as they hoped, and that HD players were the future.

    Had Sony jumped in when the first iPod's were released, then Apple wouldn't have been able to have gotten such a large foothold in the market.


    There have been some other contenders in the past, such as the Zen or the Philips, but in all honesty, they had no staying power. Sony and Panasonic are really the only two who could possibly take on the might of Apple. And as we all know, Sony just had enough and decided to go in.


    Panasonic are leaving it a little late to join in if you ask me though... I think they may be leaving it until the iPod is dead and buried, and they only really have Sony to worry about. (Correct me if I am wrong, but I don't see any Panasonic branded HD players around)


    I personally think that two more Sony HD models will ultimately kill off the iPod. Walkman shall then once again be the collective noun used to describe a portable music player (Ie, in the same way Coke is used to describe a certain carbonated vegetable extract beverage, regardless of brand)
     
  17. lchiu7

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    I have a HD3 and lacked having a remote. So I got onto Ebay and picked up one of the above for US$26 including shipping. It works pretty well, with vol, track advance/back, folder back/forward, digital display, various sound options and power on/off (even when the hold button is on in the HD3). I am pretty happy though of course I think Sony should have provided it as part of the unit
     

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