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Sony NWZ-F806 mini review (& F-series player reviews / impressions / discussion) - Page 37

post #541 of 1979
With any luck, my blue Disney engraved 807 (with case) shows up next week. While I haven't heard it, I can say for sure that Sony tends to tweak the sound a touch from release to release. When the X1060 (32GB) was replaced by the A84x series, while they both had the S-Master stuff and all things being equal, they should have been the same. But I have always felt that the A847 - the first A which then had a further two gens with the A85x and A86x - didn't sound as good as the X. Convenience won out for me and the main reason I got it was I could get 64GB. I used the A847 for quite awhile. Then I got the Z1070 last December, but the F seems to be following the A pattern in terms of size. I'm not sure it's a step back sonically - I'll know next week. It doesn't sound like it will be. Fingers crossed.
post #542 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by FenderP View Post

With any luck, my blue Disney engraved 807 (with case) shows up next week. While I haven't heard it, I can say for sure that Sony tends to tweak the sound a touch from release to release. When the X1060 (32GB) was replaced by the A84x series, while they both had the S-Master stuff and all things being equal, they should have been the same. But I have always felt that the A847 - the first A which then had a further two gens with the A85x and A86x - didn't sound as good as the X. Convenience won out for me and the main reason I got it was I could get 64GB. I used the A847 for quite awhile. Then I got the Z1070 last December, but the F seems to be following the A pattern in terms of size. I'm not sure it's a step back sonically - I'll know next week. It doesn't sound like it will be. Fingers crossed.

 

 

I have both the F807 as well as the Z1070 as well as theA867, but I'll reserve the impressions on the sound for right now as I just got it today.  The F has a very sleek interface though with very sensitive touchscreen.  I sure wish Sony continue a dedicate music control button on the F though.  

 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by OK-Guy View Post

looking good Purk mate.... what's that Michael Franks album like

 

 

The tune is very late back but the composition as well as the recording were very well done.  Amazon users rated this album pretty much 5 stars across the board and I can't agree more.


Edited by purk - 10/22/12 at 8:47pm
post #543 of 1979

 

Low and behold. I’ve spent the day with my ‘trusted’ F807 and here are my first impressions, both with respect to the player itself – and also compared to the Cowon J3 it now complements. I’d love to run through the motion to jump to some kind of hasty conclusion and create emotion fuelled debates but I won’t. I have a few minor issues with the player - which I’ll explain the best I can -, a large number of meeting expectations points that have a lot of boxes ticked and a significant number of ‘winning!’ reactions that sometimes, under the right type of lights and with the right audience, transform me into Charlie Sheen very own twin brother.

The F807 is not my first foray into the land of the dedicated Android music/video player. That honour belongs to the Cowon D3 (I’m sure you can find my review if you care to search). I am still bleeding from that experience. Inside. It pierced my heart with a million of little rusty needles that the best surgeon in the world could not extract unless under the exquisite spell of the wizard of Oz - or the prospect of an uncensored night with xxx or Lindsay Lohan, depending his level of desperation. Yeah, it hurt that bad. That player was so awful, it did not even reach the ‘unfinished’ category: it was simply ‘unstarted’. Underpowered, with poor software implementation and serious performance issues, it just could not keep up, despite fantastic sound capabilities. News that the Sony would sport a Tegra 2 chipset and Android JB were fantastic news: turned out the D3 decided to finally give up right in time; it’s battery deflating into an uninspiring few hours of expectancy. Yeah, the D3 was really that: an old smoker with the best of jokes but incapable of lasting the distance, prepping itself for a cancer that was bound to come one day or another.

 

Performance

 

Not the Sony. It’s no slouch. No couch potatoes stuck in front of X-factor. It’s no Simon Cowell on a Charlie binge. It’s fit. It’s fast and it’s nimble. It’s right and left and up and down. It’s flying. And that’s a relief: here’s a very capable Android device - not just a music player. To be fair, I have not yet tried many games other than the Riptide demo pre-loaded on the device and the little game of Fruit Ninja. But on both occasion, the Sony was mastering the demands of those games wit ease; all the while playing some great music and when I say that, I do mean my music, not the horrible ersatz of harmonies provided by game developers. I tried scrolling through lists, I’ve been a multitasking whore, I’ve played videos here and there: nothing but brilliant performance across the board to report; no doubt thanks to the happy marriage of the Tegra 2 chip and Android 4.04.

 

Build and Other things related to external design

 

I have a white version of the F807. It’s... white. And except for the button, the antenna cover and a small opening to what appears to be the external speaker, it’s all metal (and the screen of course). It feels both solid and surprisingly sturdy; something that certainly has to do with the sense of weight you feel while holding the device in the cradle of your palm. It is like a well made pastry: light and enticing, yet rich and fulfilling. 

 

I am a great fan of the size, one of the things that did put me off the Z series for a while. It’s very similar to what a J3 is in terms of footprint. It slips easily into any pocket, crevasses or openings to be immediately forgotten, yielding with a strong sense of responsibility to what matters most to us: the music experience. Saying that, the display is very good, bright and crisp with the perfect resolution for the size. It’s very responsive and though it does lack a whoa! factor (I find the colours a tad washed out), it’s bound to do a difficult job with grace.

 

And then we arrive to my personal frustrations and little things that - far from being a deal breaker - are nonetheless the type of things you would have thought could have been better thought through. 

 

1 - the capacitive button (a classic trifecta here: ‘back’; ‘home’ and ‘menu’ are responsive - although they tend sometimes to behave like distracted children and forget about your calling - and well spaced. They do the job with ease... expect at night since they are not backlit (unless someone can point me to an option in the settings; but that would be a complete surprise to me, akin to some modern miracle since their symbols seem painted on the display). It’ll ne a struggle trying to manipulate the player in bed - like I did yesterday - the only alternative I found being to use my hand as some form of reflective surface to redirect the light from the screen. It does work, mind you, so you don’t necessarily need to have been submitted to insane amounts of radiation to use this alternative.

2 - the side buttons (volume and play/pause) as well as the power on/off button at the top are very responsive as well and produce a nice, satisfying clickety click when pressed. Again they do the job neatly.

3 - the next/previous buttons... Well, they don’t exist. So here goes the dream of using the player from your pocket without having to use the screen if you are - like me - a champion of ‘lets put that thing on random and see what happens’ only to find yourself endlessly pressing the next button to mitigate the disappointment of having to listen to that song you used to love 10 years ago.

 

Note that I am at the minute listening to the F807 coupled with one of Dr Mayer little child (portable amp) using a Fiio LOD. All good there.

 

Android

 

You pretty much have the vanilla Android experience here. And that is good. Simple. Proven. With the addition of a limited number of Sony applications which all seem to do the job very well. As always with Android, you’ll find substitute for everything, free or not, so software is not an issue here. The F807 sports version 4.04 of Google portable OS. 

 

Happy to report that the stock player support FLAC natively and that it’s all gapless out of the box, something that did give me a rare form of mild orgasm; the like of which is often experienced by nerds when they hack the Pentagon network or by soccer player when they finally get that penalty they’ve been desperately trying to get, 5 minutes from full time.

 

As I mentioned earlier, all software played beautifully and I am yet to notice any form of over-heating or over-excitement from the machine itself.

 

 

The battery life

 

Well, let’s be honest: It’s Android we’re talking about here. But so far so good: 12h30m40 and still 28% to go. It’s mostly music, with mostly screen off, but with plenty of use, the odd wi-fi on to download an app from the market, etc. etc. etc. Nothing to be ashamed of for first use (and I started with battery at around 96% or so. I forgot the usb cable at work, so we’ll see when the player will finally give up soon enough!!!

 

The external buttons and the battery life is where the Sony falls short of the J3 for me - although to be fair, the J3 is helped by the fact that it does not sport Android; and that it therefore can only be used as a portable media player dedicated to sound (who watches movies on a 3.2’ screen?

 

OK, now la piece de resistance: the sound

 

I’m using a pair of reshelled (Unique Melody) in ear Westone 3UX. Used those straight out of the player and as mentioned with a portable amp. What can I say? Well - and should I add it’s a matter of opinion? - I’m still getting used to the sound signature. Used mostly stock player.

 

I find the soundstage VERY wide and the high somehow slightly forward. Perhaps too much? The bass is fairly tight and engaged (dynamic?) which is nice. But the mids seem somehow recessed? Absent? Or perhaps taken over by the excessive cymbals that seem to overpower many pieces? This was something that did also slightly annoy me with the J3; so maybe it’s me. Again, I’m getting used to the sound signature now and by no means should that be read as a ‘I don’t like it’ statement: the F807 sounds better than any phone, iPod, etc. I also suspect that I got used to the BBE effects which I always had a soft spot for... I’m just breaking in a beautiful pair of new shoes!

 

The portable amp is also nicely complementing the Sony and goes a long way to ‘tighten’ a lot of the sound into something that seems a lot more cohesive. 

 

I am also toying with the equaliser, using JetAudio and some of the tweaks do certainly seem to be adding to the type of sound I like. So we’ll see...

 

Conclusion? Opinion?

 

I am a fan. A great fan of that little player. I can see it will be a trusted companion for a long time. Not the love at first sight kind that for whom there can only be disappointment, but the faithful camrade that will share all the times with you, the good, the bad, the easy, the hard, and with whom the sense of belonging will be build through blood and tears. 


Edited by globiboulga - 10/23/12 at 1:31pm
post #544 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by globiboulga View Post

Low and behold. I’ve spent the day with my ‘trusted’ F807 and here are my first impressions, both with respect to the player itself – and also compared to the Cowon J3 it now complements. I’d love to run through the motion to jump to some kind of hasty conclusion and create emotion fuelled debates but I won’t. I have a few minor issues with the player - which I’ll explain the best I can -, a large number of meeting expectations points that have a lot of boxes ticked and a significant number of ‘winning!’ reactions that sometimes, under the right type of lights and with the right audience, transform me into Charlie Sheen very own twin brother.



The F807 is not my first foray into the land of the dedicated Android music/video player. That honour belongs to the Cowon D3 (I’m sure you can find my review if you care to search). I am still bleeding from that experience. Inside. It pierced my heart with a million of little rusty needles that the best surgeon in the world could not extract unless under the exquisite spell of the wizard of Oz - or the prospect of an uncensored night with xxx or Lindsay Lohan, depending his level of desperation. Yeah, it hurt that bad. That player was so awful, it did not even reach the ‘unfinished’ category: it was simply ‘unstarted’. Underpowered, with poor software implementation and serious performance issues, it just could not keep up, despite fantastic sound capabilities. News that the Sony would sport a Tegra 2 chipset and Android JB were fantastic news: turned out the D3 decided to finally give up right in time; it’s battery deflating into an uninspiring few hours of expectancy. Yeah, the D3 was really that: an old smoker with the best of jokes but incapable of lasting the distance, prepping itself for a cancer that was bound to come one day or another.



 



Performance



 



Not the Sony. It’s no slouch. No couch potatoes stuck in front of X-factor. It’s no Simon Cowell on a Charlie binge. It’s fit. It’s fast and it’s nimble. It’s right and left and up and down. It’s flying. And that’s a relief: here’s a very capable Android device - not just a music player. To be fair, I have not yet tried many games other than the Riptide demo pre-loaded on the device and the little game of Fruit Ninja. But on both occasion, the Sony was mastering the demands of those games wit ease; all the while playing some great music and when I say that, I do mean my music, not the horrible ersatz of harmonies provided by game developers. I tried scrolling through lists, I’ve been a multitasking whore, I’ve played videos here and there: nothing but brilliant performance across the board to report; no doubt thanks to the happy marriage of the Tegra 2 chip and Jelly Bean.



 



Build and Other things related to external design



 



I have a white version of the F807. It’s... white. And except for the button, the antenna cover and a small opening to what appears to be the external speaker, it’s all metal (and the screen of course). It feels both solid and surprisingly sturdy; something that certainly has to do with the sense of weight you feel while holding the device in the cradle of your palm. It is like a well made pastry: light and enticing, yet rich and fulfilling. 



 



I am a great fan of the size, one of the things that did put me off the Z series for a while. It’s very similar to what a J3 is in terms of footprint. It slips easily into any pocket, crevasses or openings to be immediately forgotten, yielding with a strong sense of responsibility to what matters most to us: the music experience. Saying that, the display is very good, bright and crisp with the perfect resolution for the size. It’s very responsive and though it does lack a whoa! factor (I find the colours a tad washed out), it’s bound to do a difficult job with grace.



 



And then we arrive to my personal frustrations and little things that - far from being a deal breaker - are nonetheless the type of things you would have thought could have been better thought through. 



 



1 - the capacitive button (a classic trifecta here: ‘back’; ‘home’ and ‘menu’ are responsive - although they tend sometimes to behave like distracted children and forget about your calling - and well spaced. They do the job with ease... expect at night since they are not backlit (unless someone can point me to an option in the settings; but that would be a complete surprise to me, akin to some modern miracle since their symbols seem painted on the display). It’ll ne a struggle trying to manipulate the player in bed - like I did yesterday - the only alternative I found being to use my hand as some form of reflective surface to redirect the light from the screen. It does work, mind you, so you don’t necessarily need to have been submitted to insane amounts of radiation to use this alternative.



2 - the side buttons (volume and play/pause) as well as the power on/off button at the top are very responsive as well and produce a nice, satisfying clickety click when pressed. Again they do the job neatly.



3 - the next/previous buttons... Well, they don’t exist. So here goes the dream of using the player from your pocket without having to use the screen if you are - like me - a champion of ‘lets put that thing on random and see what happens’ only to find yourself endlessly pressing the next button to mitigate the disappointment of having to listen to that song you used to love 10 years ago.



 



Note that I am at the minute listening to the F807 coupled with one of Dr Mayer little child (portable amp) using a Fiio LOD. All good there.



 



Android



 



You pretty much have the vanilla JellyBean experience here. And that is good. Simple. Proven. With the addition of a limited number of Sony applications which all seem to do the job very well. As always with Android, you’ll find substitute for everything, free or not, so software is not an issue here. The F807 sports version 4.04 of Google portable OS. 



 



Happy to report that the stock player support FLAC natively and that it’s all gapless out of the box, something that did give me a rare form of mild orgasm; the like of which is often experienced by nerds when they hack the Pentagon network or by soccer player when they finally get that penalty they’ve been desperately trying to get, 5 minutes from full time.



 



As I mentioned earlier, all software played beautifully and I am yet to notice any form of over-heating or over-excitement from the machine itself.



 



 



The battery life



 



Well, let’s be honest: It’s Android we’re talking about here. But so far so good: 12h30m40 and still 28% to go. It’s mostly music, with mostly screen off, but with plenty of use, the odd wi-fi on to download an app from the market, etc. etc. etc. Nothing to be ashamed of for first use (and I started with battery at around 96% or so. I forgot the usb cable at work, so we’ll see when the player will finally give up soon enough!!!



 



The external buttons and the battery life is where the Sony falls short of the J3 for me - although to be fair, the J3 is helped by the fact that it does not sport Android; and that it therefore can only be used as a portable media player dedicated to sound (who watches movies on a 3.2’ screen?



 



OK, now la piece de resistance: the sound



 



I’m using a pair of reshelled (Unique Melody) in ear Westone 3UX. Used those straight out of the player and as mentioned with a portable amp. What can I say? Well - and should I add it’s a matter of opinion? - I’m still getting used to the sound signature. Used mostly stock player.



 



I find the soundstage VERY wide and the high somehow slightly forward. Perhaps too much? The bass is fairly tight and engaged (dynamic?) which is nice. But the mids seem somehow recessed? Absent? Or perhaps taken over by the excessive cymbals that seem to overpower many pieces? This was something that did also slightly annoy me with the J3; so maybe it’s me. Again, I’m getting used to the sound signature now and by no means should that be read as a ‘I don’t like it’ statement: the F807 sounds better than any phone, iPod, etc. I also suspect that I got used to the BBE effects which I always had a soft spot for... I’m just breaking in a beautiful pair of new shoes!



 



The portable amp is also nicely complementing the Sony and goes a long way to ‘tighten’ a lot of the sound into something that seems a lot more cohesive. 



 



I am also toying with the equaliser, using JetAudio and some of the tweaks do certainly seem to be adding to the type of sound I like. So we’ll see...



 



Conclusion? Opinion?



 



I am a fan. A great fan of that little player. I can see it will be a trusted companion for a long time. Not the love at first sight kind that for whom there can only be disappointment, but the faithful camrade that will share all the times with you, the good, the bad, the easy, the hard, and with whom the sense of belonging will be build through blood and tears. 



Thank you for sharing. My J3 left me 2 weeks ago, and my only complain is the absence of the tactile buttons, but it will grow into you.
post #545 of 1979

More than 15h18mn and still 15% left, which is quite impressive when you think that all of that is playing FLAC files!!! biggrin.gif

post #546 of 1979
globibouga: How come yours is running Jelly Bean Android 4.1? Last I checked it's only specified with Android 4.0.4 ICS.

Also, have you tried the digital NC? How well does it work? I'm also reading on the Japanese site here that it appears to have some additional support (a third mode) for use with "other equipment". Does this mean it'll work with different earphones?
Edited by salanos - 10/23/12 at 6:05am
post #547 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by salanos View Post

globibouga: How come yours is running Jelly Bean Android 4.1? Last I checked it's only specified with Android 4.0.4 ICS.

Most be a typo.
post #548 of 1979
Turok does the digital NC only work with the included earphones, or does it work with other equipment? If I can use it with other earphones, that'd be such a blessing...
post #549 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by purk View Post

 

 

I have both the F807 as well as the Z1070 as well as theA867, but I'll reserve the impressions on the sound for right now as I just got it today.  The F has a very sleek interface though with very sensitive touchscreen.  I sure wish Sony continue a dedicate music control button on the F though.  

i will be waiting purk. really hope you could give a great review and comparison betweeen F and Z series.

post #550 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by salanos View Post

Turok does the digital NC only work with the included earphones, or does it work with other equipment? If I can use it with other earphones, that'd be such a blessing...

Only with the included earphones but it is extremely effective.  Sony has been doing this Since the X, A, Z, and now the F walkman.  

post #551 of 1979

Shout out to my man Alex!

 

Just got my black unit. It's gorgeous and extremely responsive.


Edited by Bokyung - 10/23/12 at 10:13am
post #552 of 1979
Thread Starter 

Awesome write-up, globiboulga!

post #553 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by turokrocks View Post


Most be a typo.

 

It is. Sorry. It's 4.04 in there... Got excited, late a night, etc. I realised when I tried to take a couple of screenshots!!! I'll edit. Battery was still going after 16h... Very impressed.

post #554 of 1979

Hisses a bit with 4.Ai, hisses a lot with Fitear ToGo! 334

 

Nevertheless I am enjoying the sound signature a lot.

post #555 of 1979
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bokyung View Post

Shout out to my man Alex!

Just got my black unit. It's gorgeous and extremely responsive.

Welcome bok smily_headphones1.gif Two Four for you!!
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