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Sony Walkman NW-A3000 20 GB

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    23 Reviews
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      18.03.2012 16:43

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      Plays music, like a handy mp3 player, but this ain't an iPod.

      I inherited this mp3 player two years ago, after my Creative Zen decided to break. My sister had just gotten an iPod, and had no need for it any more. It is flawed, but has served me well all the same.

      People are constantly asking if it's some kind of newfangled smartphone, given that it looks nothing like the iPods that everyone rocks these days. Part of me is happy to be original and different with my Walkman, but I often do wish for the functionality of Apple's superior hardware.

      The NW-A3000 comes in at 20GB, which is more than enough capacity for my needs, usually. Granted, every month or so I refresh my music on it, but for the most part it's a functional library. Where it falls short is in its more practical functionality. The software is a bit sluggish to respond, and there is a delay in moving to and through the menu options. This is a minor gripe, however, and more annoyingly, there does not seem to be any way to delete music off the Walkman without plugging it into a computer. This becomes an issue when I realise that I have the full discography of Glee on there, moments before plugging it into the speakers at a party. 'Shuffle All' be damned.

      Also, when accessing the Walkman with a computer, you need specialised software to do so. Windows Media Player will add music to the player, but will not actually convert it to a playable format. In essence you're left with a full hard drive, but no music available. The software is free, but a bit of a hassle, especially if not using your own computer.

      These are all manageable drawbacks given the disparity in price between the NW-A3000 and an iPod, but ensures that this Walkman feels particularly dated. The player is also quite heavy, but exercise is good for you.

      At the end of the day, the hardware is ancient, by today's standards, but you knew that before reading this review. Still, it seems relatively shock-proof, and if you, like me, enjoy being challenged by your gadgets, this is a good match for you.

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      20.07.2011 12:26
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      A MP3 player bargain - highly recommended.

      I have good memories of this MP3 player. Prior to owning it I used an in-car MD player , I was getting a little tired of constantly having to swap disks and this device (2006) was the best answer.

      I was blown away with the ability to store my entire music collection on one device !, this made for some much more enjoyable car journeys and allowed me to get rid of my MD player.

      The unit itself is a very solid item , with a metal back and futuristic appearance. The LCD front display is STILL preferable to an ipod/iphone IMO as it is very clear, legible and displays all the information you need. Battery life is very good, I don't know exact figures but I remember being on holiday for 4/5 days and not recharging it (with a few hours a day usage).

      Spinning HDD's such as the one inside this unit have been superseded by flash memory. I have to admit the one advantage of this is heat. This unit can get rather warm, not a concern but in conjunction with the spinning platter noise I do prefer the more modern storage.

      Sound quality is superb - better than an iphone /ipod.

      Please dont let this put you off though !, you can pick this up for £60 off ebay - do so ! its a bargain and a quality item. Dont use the incorporated Sonic Stage software from Sony, it is sent straight from the devil, there are many free alternatives online too download.

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      17.07.2011 14:31
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      Just buy something else

      I bought this product back in November 2005 and had stop using it within a year although this was mostly down to the software rather than the actual unit.

      Firstly though, to start with the aesthetic side of things. The unit looked fantastic and very original. You can barely tell that there is a screen there until you turn it on and the display comes up and looks about as good as anything with a one colour display can look. However, if the sun is out then it's impossible to see. The screen is simply not bright enough to counter it and the have to walk around with the screen right up to your eyes and your spare hand cutting off as much light as you can. Therefore, the product makes people look like right muppets!

      Despite this, the main job of an MP3 player, certainly at this time before the multimedia players were so prevalent is simply to play music and on this aspect I can have no complaints. The sounds is excellent on all genres of music.

      In terms of usability the unit has a couple of nice features such a time machine shuffle(plays all songs from a certain year) but this relies on all the song data being upto date and this is where the my complaints would begin. The software is called Connect and is truly awful. Every single aspect of it from importing CDs to finding song data to transferring the songs onto the device is shockingly slow, laborious and fault ridden. I have literally never found a piece of software to be so frustrating. After having a look online I found there was an alternative download only program called Sonic Stage which was marginally better then the one originally provided but still a bit of a shocker. The software is so bad that it's detracts disproportionally from the product.

      Connection to the PC is made by a bespoke cable and not a generic USB/Mini USB cable which is something that also annoys me!

      I assume that this product has been off the market for a while now but only purchase this 2nd hand if you have an hour every time you want to import a CD!

      *This review is my own work although I may post it elsewhere on the internet.

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      27.10.2010 03:44

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      A bit outdated now, however still a decent purchase!

      Had the NWA 3000 a few years now, and still use it from time to time, although my phone has now took over as my main mp3 player.

      At the time of purchase i didn't think there was a better or cooler looking mp3 player on the market. The design is original indeed, the player has the misleading appearance of having no screen only for you to turn it on and see that there is in fact a low quality (pixel-ated) screen afterall.

      The software that initially came with this, which had to be used to transfer songs to this device (no drag and drop) was initially dreadful. Lots of people couldn't even get it to work, including myself and i had to resort to using an old version of sonic stage, which took away some of the features (artist link feature)

      The problems didn't stop here however, i found that when having over 15gb of music on the player, it was ridiculously slow when browsing, and browsing artist and album folders also drained the battery really fast!
      I am quite patient though, so i learned to make playlists and just play them which would minimise my time navigating the device and maximise the battery.

      Also the phone came with a cap on the volume which stopped the player from going loud at all. This was initially much to my annoyance, however i eventually found a way to turn off the limiter and was much happier with the product. (have a look on google to find out how to do this)

      Overall this is a decent device, and I'm sure they can be picked up on ebay or other sites like that for very cheap these days! So it could potentially be a bargain.

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      01.10.2010 10:45
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      An okay MP3 player....

      For the most part, this MP3 player from Sony has generally gotten good reviews and that is good because this is a neat little player for those who do not wish to purchase an Ipod or similar machine for whatever their reasons but be warned this MP3 player is not without its faults mostly relkated to its software!

      On the whole, it is small, reasonably compact and very asthetically pleasing to the eye. It is also manufactured by Sony who have a good reputation for music players in the past. Easy to use it comes with a number of functions which includes finding artists by name, track or album as you might expect but also allows searching by alphabetical order though, and this is my first fault with the product, I do find that excessive searching can quickly deplete the battery which seems to recharge itself again with enough charge to play after several minutes of powering down. It is advised by this reviewer that you keep a charger handy for times when the battery seems to drop very quickly after all you have seemingly done is ask the machine to do what it is supposed to!

      Adding music is a simple affair with the use of Sonic which is Sony's answer to Itunes. Deleting music is generally just as simple I find, though if you are out and about your only option is to put tracks you don't want in the Trash Bin section. These are then deleted automatically when you reconnect to your P.C! Sonic is not the best of software to use and nowhere near as efficient or as well designed as Itunes with lots of little glitches and snags at time that can make putting music on the machine occassionally harder than it needs to be! But it is free to download and easy to install and the little glitches I have encountered, like putting songs on your MP3 twice when you transfer music, seem to happen infrequently thankfully! And no before you ask, it is not just me....some of my friends have had similar troubles!

      The other problem is that if they break, they are troublesome to fix. My brother-in-law is an electronics whizz and, when my headphone socket broke meaning everything came out in mono, he told me that he could take it apart and fix the problem but because of the way it is designed would have troubles putting bit back together again! I do not know if this is the same with all MP3 players but my brother-in-law said it is because it is fitted together with clips that only go one way and that opening the machine up tends to break these no matter how careful you are! That kind of prevented me from letting him try and made me think that these are a perfect example of our throw-away society that would love us to replace rather than repair.

      I have had my MP3 for several years and recently replaced it with a cheap one fro Ebay because of afore-mentioned problems. But my wife bought me an Ipod Shuffle for xmas and I am much happier with that and find it a much better machine!

      Still this is not bad and is a nice alternative to the I-franchise!

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        27.05.2010 22:35
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        3/5 stars

        I bought this mp3 player a year or so ago, and it is still going strong. Although its default on computer player isn't the best, the device itself is pretty durable, and is yet to experience any major problems. Its hard-drive space is ample for most users, and its display is particularly pleasing in the dark. On bright days however, its display can prove to be a bit difficult, though playing quality is never an issue. The sound quality of this device is ample in my view, though I have never used top-end headphones, so may not have been able to notice any more subtle problems. When compared to an iPod, there are more disadvantages than advantages, however this can be made up for by its much smaller price tag. Resale however, can be problematic. Around a month ago, I purchased another mp3 player, and to try and rake in some cash for college, attempted to sell this one. However, as of now it has been to no avail. All in all though, for a casual music user, this is a great, value for money, simple to use mp3 player. The sound quality is good, and it isn't bad to look at either. 3/5 stars.

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          28.10.2009 01:15
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          Super audiophile sound quality from a very stylish device

          The Sony Walkman NW-A3000 was my first ever MP3 player, as such I had nothing to compare it to. I found it very hard wearing, easy to use and very stylish.

          The best points about the player are mostly the quality and style that Sony deliver in terms of the build and look of the device. Also the sound quality is superb, it really is.

          Now for the negatives, and there is a whole lot of them. The screen is not colour, its a simple one colour text display. The software is a nightmare to use; whether you are adding or removing tracks it has to be done using the sonic stage software, which more often than not crashes or takes an eternity to do what you want it to do. Its expensive considering what the competion has on offer with similar specifications. It takes a long time to charge. I find that my player is very slow to respond to button presses and often freezes.

          Although there is a huge number of negatives I would recommend this player purely based upon the sound quality. Sony avoided all the high tech screens and features to concentrate in the quality and it really shows. If you can pick one up cheap then get one. One tip I will give you is not to fully load the player as it gets confused and crashes, also upgrade to the new software from the Sony website as it much much better.

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          21.08.2009 18:25

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          5 Stars!

          I remember when i got this MP3 player for my birthday a few years ago! Back then it was 'the thing' and so i was so pleased! Due to the fact that technology has expanded what with all these different Ipods coming out i hadnt used the sony walkman for a few years but after a total clean out of my room- i re-discovered it and now use it even more than my Ipod!!

          This Sony Walkman is very stylish and sleek and can easily slide into your pocket. It comes in a range of different colours and can hold up to 20GB- in other words lots and lots of songs/albums!! Once you get used to using it then it is very simple and easy to use- even for a technology novice like my mum! Yo can easily make playlists of your favourite songs and even give each song a star rating.

          The only downsides to this MP3 player is that a) The screen is very shiny so its sometimes difficult to see what music your playing etc. and b) the headphones you get with it aren't that good as they are those ones that have one earphone shorter than the other but then again this may just be my preference and can easily be changed.

          So to be honest there are a lot more advantages than disadvantages about the Sony Walkman NW-A3000!

          Enjoy!

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          24.07.2009 14:05
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          Good choice in comparison to expensive Ipod

          I bought this player after having a 4GB Ipod Nano, which broken and wanted something a bit better value for money. The Sony was about the same price (£160) and about 5 times the capacity of the latest Ipod at the time, so I thought I'd give it a shot.

          On first impressions, I felt that the Connect software it came with was fairly easy to use and easy to put music on the player. This improved when Sony introduced the Sonic Stage software apart from my PC's inability to connect to the player when I plugged the player into my USB port. (PC's fault I think).

          The player is easy to use and I like the artist link feature as well as the chunky nature of the player. Also good sound quality as well as having volume loud enough to be able to hear it in busy environments. The sound control is much easier to use as its a up-down slider rather than the sometimes fiddly iod wheel system.

          The only downside I have suffered is the software on the player seems to have got some sort of bug which means the artist skips to the next one involuntarily when selected.

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            25.06.2009 14:24
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            Software ruins player

            Whilst I'm aware that most people won't want to purchase such an old model, I still feel a certain responsibility in informing any potentional buyers of the utterly horrible experience I had as an owner of this Walkman.

            I won't go into the details of every aspect of the player because, quite honestly, my negative criticism is all that's required to deter anyone from making the purchase.

            "What can be so bad that it outweighs all of the good", you ask?

            "The Software", I answer.

            Like iTunes, the Sony software is unnecessarily convoluted, ugly and utterly pointless. Never before have I had to do so much to achieve so little. Transferring files onto the player is fiddly and time consuming. What's so wrong with Windows Drag and Drop as a transfer method?

            On top of that, the inability to take songs OFF the player ruined the entire purchase experience for me. Let me explain:

            I know the benefits of DRM. I understand a company like Sony wanting to use it on specially formatted files. What I don't understand is why you can't take songs off the player when you were the one who put them on.

            You're presented with a message similar to "Unable to transfer file. The same file could not be found in the library". So I'm wondering... if the file is already in the library, why on earth would I want to transfer a second copy?

            You can see that a logic flaw on Sony's part has ruined their credibility.

            Don't buy this. Don't buy anything that makes you jump through hoops to move music files between your computer and your player.

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              06.05.2009 11:33
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              Look elsewhere

              I bought this new sony walkman after putting my last walkman in the washing machine. It was an updated model and initially both looked and seemed as much but unfortunately this walkman is let down by one or two things.

              Firstly the positives, the design is far better in my opinion than the design of iPods. In particular the way the screen is set behind the front surface is very neat, it means that the screen itself doesn't actually get scratched and makes a much better overall look. Also as with most Sony mp3 players, the sound quality is very high, higher than that of iPods.

              However there are two downsides. Firstly the software supplied for use was very poor (Sony connect) and I ended up using older Sony software (sonicstage). The other problem was that over time the player became very slow to navigate menus. I found this could be solved by defragmenting the hard disc. Unfortunately the customer service was very poor and they did not help me sort out either of these problems.

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                30.01.2009 17:04
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                It shouldnt let you down.

                I bought one of these players about three (maybe four actually) years ago, and its still going strong. I think I paid 159.99 for it, it's the 20gb purple one. I bought it from Comet and took out the three year insurance on it, which actually paid off in the end as I will explain later. The player is quite heavy and bulky compared to the new ipods such as the ipod nano, I actually bought a 16gb nano a few weeks back and the size and weight difference is enormous. The player never let me down, it always worked as it should, no problem there. The software you use to manage the player is called SonicStage and is fine, its user friendly and you can easily view your music, create playlists and import cds. The software doesn't show the album art however. The player doesn't have a colour screen, it's a sort of dot-matrix white colour writing. But its kind of cool because when the player is switched off or in sleep mode you cant actually see where the screen is, it just looks like a big purple pod... The battery life was good at first, lasting 20 hours or so. But after a couple of years of fairly heavy use - and by fairly heavy I mean around 6 hours a day, 5 days a week - the battery would not even last four hours before giving up. Because I took out the extra three year insurance on it I took it back to Comet and explained the problem, and they sent it off to Sony to have a replacement battery fitted. It came back and the battery lasted as long as it did the day I bought it. BUT - I did lose all my music so make sure you have it all loaded on to your pc first!! I have heard that you can fit new batteries yourself but as mine was still under insurance I let them do it. The headphones you get with the player are a bit rubbish, I bought new ones. Its got loads of storage on it though, I have almost 3000 songs on mine and loads more space to fill.

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                28.09.2008 08:59
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                Don't even think about comparing this supirior MP3 player to any lesser-beings! Hehe

                So, the sony walkman. I've had mine for two years now - I guess this won't be of much use to anyone who wanted to buy something completely new - I believe they've discontinued it, sadly. But along wth other reviewers, I am saddened by the continual comparisons to the iPod: '20g? How many videos is that?' well if you want to watch videos, you can buy either a TV or a computer. So the reply comes: 'None. It doesn't do videos'. This is strangly settling, don't you think? We have a generation of children who want their MP3 players to do everything for them; the NW-A3000 is pure simplicity. It just gives you what you want to hear. So then comes another iPod comparison:'Where's the album art? An iPod has album art.' Which I have to say IS a nice feature of an iPod - I don't think I can be too anti-iPod here, my little sister is a big fan - yet it takes up so much space! And so then comes yet another comparison: 'Why is the screen in black and white? Where are all the colours? iPod has colours.' Well yes, the iPod feels the need to over-complicate things to make up for the fact it's an iPod. Now don't get me wrong, this isn't going to be a slagging-off of the iPod. But I feel that again with all the simplicity that the Walkman has to offer, you can't go far wrong. Some things I would have to pick up on are: Connect player - it doesn't seem to ever have good days, does it??!! It's quite hard to use; I recommend you use 'SonicStage' if you can find it, I use this because of a previously-owned 'Atrac3plus' - again, Walkman - it's very easy to use, and equally hard to find.

                I recommend anyone out there considering a useful, long-lasting (mine is over 2years old now, still fully-functioning) please, try and find this walkman.

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                21.09.2008 04:59

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                Good Product But It Has It's Faults

                I recently purchased one of these, and i can safely say that they are quite good. It is certainly not perfect, but it is good. The battery life is suprisingly excellent too. As someone mentioned in another review, a down side to this MP3 player is the volume, it does not let you turn up the volume very high, and when you are out riding a bike in heavy traffic, you can still hear the music, but it would be much better if it could go louder as you can hear the cars next to you.

                Another downside to this MP3 player is the On button, it doesn't actually have a on or off button, to turn it on, you simply press the play button, which can VERY VERY easily be pressed by accident whilst in your pocket or anywhere else. To turn it off, you simply click the options button, then select shut down, which is not a problem. Other than these few problems, it is a great product.

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                01.06.2008 18:38
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                This retro player is ideal for those not wanting to line Apple's pockets

                This mp3 player boasts a wide range of options that are not available on your typical ipod. However, due to technical difficulties with the connect player, sonic stage must be used to load tracks. Whilst it suffices for getting music onto the player, a great number of the special features that attracted me to the player in the first place are unavailable with sonic stage. However, the sound quality is very good, the menu is easy to navigate and the player is generally easy to use. I much prefer the design of the NW-A3000 to an ipod; it has a retro stylishness that the ipod lacks. The battery lasts for 40 hours, and this is probably the most impressive thing about this player, you can continue to listen to music long after most other mp3 players run out of battery. One very nice detail to the player is the stars that go across the screen when a song is playing, particuarly effective on the black version.

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              • Product Details

                Simply called 'WALKMAN', the new digital music player from Sony features spectacular ergonomic design and an exciting range of intelligent features that allow the user to enjoy music in a totally new way.

                Sony WALKMAN NW-A3000 is a true extension of the user's personal taste and musical preferences. At the press of a button, the 'Artist Link' function will search every artist, album and song stored on the device and offer suggestions of artists and bands closely linked to the genre of music being played at the time.

                Sony WALKMAN NW-A3000 also features two new shuffle functions. By selecting 'My Favorite Shuffle', the device automatically selects the most listened to 100 songs and plays them at random. The 'Time Machine Shuffle' function randomly selects a year and plays all of the songs from that particular year that are currently held on the device.

                Featuring an advanced organic EL display, Sony WALKMAN NW-A3000 not only incorporates a range of great features, it also offers the ultimate in ease of use through an appealing user interface and fantastic visibility.

                Technical Data

                Product Description: Sony Walkman NW-A3000 - digital player
                Enclosure Colour: Violet
                Sound Output Mode: Stereo
                Equaliser: 6 bands
                Supported Digital Audio Standards: MP3, ATRAC3
                Built-in Display: 2" - OLED
                HDD: 20 GB
                Headphones: Headphones - binaural - ear-bud - stereo
                Interface Supported: Hi-Speed USB
                Battery: Player
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