Sony’s nano-sized player aims to blast Apple out of its, er, tree by combining the twin cannons of video playback and Bluetooth technology.
So is it successful? Very nearly. It’s certainly a more-than-capable nano substitute. That 2.4-inch, 320×240-pixel screen is as lavish and clear as 2.4-inch screens get, although darker scenes can leave you squinting. The fact that it’s only got 4GB storage also means that it’s more suited to pop videos than Kevin Costner films.
The real USP here, though, are the wireless headphones this comes with. Sony cuts the sonic apron strings here with a bang up-to-date wireless set of cans for its Bluetooth-toting Walkman. Thankfully they’re much more capable than previous harrowing experiences we’ve had win Bluetooth cans, which we won’t go into here.
Sony’s audio quality has always been its trademark, and it delivers again here with beautifully bass-heavy and lively sonics, blocking out external noise in the process. The only quibbles we have are that they sometimes cut out if your player’s at the bottom of your manbag, and the headphone’s 11hour battery life – while good – doesn’t match the A826K’s day-and-a-half-long stamina!
Alternatively, if you don’t fancy listening with the headphones, you can always stream to compatible car stereos or hi-fis instead. Just another boon to an already enticing MP3 player!