CNET reviews iaudio X5
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LFC_SL

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via dapreview.net

http://reviews.cnet.com/Cowon_iAudio...2.html?tag=tab

7.3/10

This is what dapreview made of it:

Verdict: 7.3 out of 10... just average. And yet they gave Sony's NW-HD5 a full 8 out of 10. Confusing, to say the least. They raise a number of concerns about the X5, some of which we'll agree with, but a couple of points should be addressed:

"..we had to run all of our video files through JetAudio for them to play on the X5" and "converting your videos so that they'll work on the player is a multistep process"
• You'll have to convert your videos for just about every player on the market, downsampled to the size of the screen. And it makes sense: why use a video encoded at 640x480 or whatever when it consumes 3x the disk space of a video encoded for the dimensions of a smaller screen..? With the X5, they make it pretty easy at least, simply drag and drop your videos to the JetAudio application and will automatically encode them to the right format (Xvid) and settings.

"iPod converts accustomed to seamless iTunes integration should think carefully before taking the plunge."
• The X5 doesn't need iTunes, or any managment programs - that's by design. Not that iTunes is much of a hassle - we like it - but in some situations it can be cumbersome compared to loading music directly through Windows Explorer. On computers other than your own, for example.

"Cowon promises a late-July/early-August firmware upgrade that will do away with the old-school folder-tree structure and replace it with an iPod-style music library."
• A lot of people actually prefer the file/folder tree method of music sorting/navigation. All of Korea, for one. Why? Because you can customize the way your files are organized, and you don't have to deal with formatting iD3 tags, if you don't want. On the iPod, music is organized into predefined id3-tag catagories (Artist, Albums, Tracks), and if you're tracks aren't properly tagged, then finding what you want can be a chore. The best solution is to to have both iD3-tag based sorting (like iPod) as well as file/folder browsing (like the X5) so you can do it whichever way you want. Cowon is working on it at least, a good sign.

"adding a bookmark is a cumbersome process"
• Actually, you can customize the function of one of the player's buttons, including the option to set it as a dedicated Bookmarking button. It doesn't get much easier than that.

"The X5's USB Host mode lets you connect a camera and view or copy the snapshots to the player--a nice feature, save for the fact that only about 30 cameras from Olympus, Sony, Nikon, FujiFilm, Konica Minolta, Kyocra, Panasonic, and Kenox are supported."
• A more complete list of supported devices can be found on the iAudiophile.net fan-site, HERE. Nearly 100 devices have proven compatible so far.

We also noticed that while they compared the X5 with the iPod for the things that the iPod does better - like being able to listen to music while viewing pictures - they did not point out the areas where the X5 trumps the iPod. There's more than a few.

Valid issue they raised include the resolution of the screen, which isn't quite as nice (detailed) for viewing pictures as the screens you get on an iPod, or some players from iRiver, and the questionable design of the X5 where it requires the use of a mini-dock for charging, transfers, and line input/output. Along with most folks, we would have preferred that these were built into the main unit, even if added a half inch or so to the length.

CNET made a fair share of positive comments as well, noting that it has great sound quality, strong output, many recording options, and clear FM reception
 
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Caboose

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This is precisely the reason people should be taking the extra effort to visit and support sites like this one. CNET is not the only culprit here. Other review sites suffer from the same issues. I don't know what it is......Are they beholding to Apple for some reason? - Maybe not, but I'll about guarantee that some sites/magazines are for advertising revenue reasons (sorry for declaring the obvious
).
I have seen the same thing on sites like PCMAG.com and even the supposedly totally independent Consumerreports.org (I know, I know........flame away). They would have you believe that some products are the second coming while others are "expensive paperweights". Sure, there are times when they are right, but with a little research and review of true (fanboyism aside) impartial, thorough and detailed opinions (like many of those found here) you might find come to exactly the opposite conclusion.
The content of the original posts benefits from a person addressing and clarifying or debunking the statements made in the CNET review. Those are the types of things consumers need to read to make a true, informed decision. Without this site (and/or sites like it......although unequalled) I would have never purchased an iAudio X5. While I won't argue that it is THE BEST player on the market.......it is the best player FOR ME and I'm glad I didn't make my decision based strictly on reviews like CNET.
Alas, there will always and forever be consumers that buy based on the first review they read (if they even go that far) but I won't be one of them, and none of my friends will be either if I have the chance to help them out.
 
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LFC_SL

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There are some incompetent mags/sites out there.....

Some believe the HD1 is the DAP offering from Sony that doesn't have MP3 support etc


Some haven't reported the re-jigging of the iPod line.....

Some aren't aware of the X5, gigabeat, samsung offerings etc
 
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Electric_Mofo

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That really was a pathetic review especially considering the superiority this player has over the ipods.
 
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ringleader

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I've been asking and finally ordered an iAudio X5L 30 GB... Looking forward to its arrival, perhaps Monday 7-25-05. Thanks to all who have given me Hints and Suggestions regarding the X5L which I'll be using with my iMacG5. Cordially, Richard...
 
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SDLeMire

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Quote:

Originally Posted by LFC_SL
Some believe the HD1 is the DAP offering from Sony that doesn't have MP3 support etc



You mean it does?
 
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darkninja67

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Cnet really dropped the ball on that one. Having it in their MUST HAVE list then pulling this crap.

Some people just know better and I am one of them. The detail from FLAC files on the X5 is second to none. How can I say that? Well until recently I had 4 HD DAPs in my possession. 3G 40GB iPod, Rio Carbon, Rio Karma and the X5. The X5 sounds as good or better than the Karma EQed. The iPod always sounded flat to me and the EQ is useless as we all know.
 
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PLCorndog

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CNet drops the ball on every mp3 player review they do. The section might as well be renamed iPod comparisons. They are sooo dumb. In the Zen Micro vieo, they say iPod Mini at least 5 times and only say Zen Micro twice. They also say the Micro has a line in, and point to the headphone jack!!!
i dont trust CNet anymore....
 
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c.you

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What a bunch of biased ****ers.
X5 Design-6 iPod Design-9
X5 Features-8 iPod Features-8
X5 Performance-8 iPod Performance-8

Hmmm... I never knew iPod had as many features as the X5 did. I never knew iPod had as many features as X5? Maybe I didn't read the specs properly...
 
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YngwieJMalmsteen

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I was worried from the title of the thread that you were seriously discussing a cnet review; glad to see things have not gotten that bad.

As an ipod owner I think there are legitimite reasons to own them; and the worst part of his review is that he doesn't even know what they are. Yeah, I'm sure you really browse your music by "genre" all the time cnet guy, and I'll bet you're watching slideshows while listening to music right now. Oh yeah, and apple letting us buy (overpriced/poorly encoded) music from there store is a really great "feature."

Seriously though, stop expecting real information from cnet (you are usually more likely find it in the cnet USER reviews) and you won't have a problem.
 
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Blitzula

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I read the review twice and it seems fine to me.

7.0 to 7.9 (Very good):
While the strengths of a product scoring in this range certainly outweigh its weaknesses, it has some minor faults that certain users should be aware of.

I see people criticizing the review for misinformation while they post their own (such as claiming the review given was average).
 
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CamelBackCinema

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CNET and their review system is very bad. There is no structure or uniformity to any of it. The site probably has over two dozen reviewers each with different opinions, knowledge and bias.

And their ratings system is just so bad, I don't understand how they can give everything like a 6.8....
 
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Blitzula

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Quote:

Originally Posted by CamelBackCinema
CNET and their review system is very bad. There is no structure or uniformity to any of it.


Seems like they lay out their structure for a review score at the end...I don't get that comment.


Quote:

Originally Posted by CamelBackCinema
The site probably has over two dozen reviewers each with different opinions, knowledge and bias.....


And this is different than so many other review sites/people's opinions because....?

It seems clear to me that the Iaudio's features have considerable ease of use/performance issues. Not being able to browse by artist, album, or genre should knock a player down a point right away in my opinion. I think too often people who are very computer or technology savvy don't get that the general population isn't and then criticize them for not liking features that require too much knowledge (for someone who doesn't care that much) to use.

On the Cnet front, it's like Bose bashing around here...everything is always bad. While I agree with Bose based on the equipment I've heard, this review is not unreasonable to me. And I imagine other reviews are fine also.

I wonder if I'm the only one tired of people who jump on trendy "bashing" of whatever. It's obvious and boring...and in this case (imo) wrong.
 
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XxATOLxX

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I dont know about you guys I got lost with the Ipod mini yesterday
I think the file structure of the X5 is pretty well made and works well.
. An Ipod-Style navigation interface WOULD be nice for average consumers but its not necessary for me, I like how the X5's file system does the alphabetical order thing, just like the music on my computer.

Does anyone else think that recent daps are becoming too consumer friendly? Im sort of a geek (ok a complete geek
) and having an overly easy to use DAP just bores the hell out of me. (Wheres the surprises?!
)
 
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CamelBackCinema

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Well being a forum poster myself, I feel as if the information given on said sites like CNET are vastly inferior to forums. So I guess it is still my opinion-- CNET is bad and I would never judge a product on their word alone.
 
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