Sony’s Walkman brand still isn’t dead, and two of the latest ones run Android

Sony Walkman

Many brands come and go over the years, but a lot of Sony’s seem to have the type of staying power that not many other manufacturers can say they enjoy. Bravia is a mainstay in television, Playstation in gaming, and so on. Now, another classic franchise is staying buoyed with another relevance-saving release. We’re talking about the Walkman brand, and Sony has four new models coming to the table.

Two of those models — the ZX1 and F880 — run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. So what’s so special about these devices that a simple music playing app can’t handle? Well, Sony includes their S-Master HX digital amp technology, and support for 192kHz / 24bit audio in lossless formats such as FLA, WAV, AIFF and ALAC.

Both boast 1GHz dual-core processors, NFC, Bluetooth, WiFi and 854 x 480 resolution. As for storage, the ZX1 will come with 128GB standard, though you’ll be forking over about $750 to get it. The F880 is a bit more reasonable as it comes in different storage options, with 16GB, 32GB and 64GB options going up for sale for $273, $304 and $405, respectively.

Unfortunately it sounds like Sony is only planning to release these things in Japan, but if you’re really in love with the Walkman brand you can look into importing (which will likely make the cost of admission even higher). Sony is looking to have these out early December.

[Sony 1|2 via Engadget]

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  • phatmanXXL [16,000+ posts]

    Waaaay too expensive for a Mp3 player.

    • BELIEVEinMYTH

      I would imagine it does other things, but who knows. Only available in Japan anyways.

    • Ben Kapferer

      Everything’s waaaay too expensive in Japan.

    • solidpig

      If you’re getting one to play Mp3s, you’re doing something wrong.
      In fact, the Mp3 format should just be outright banned on these devices.

  • SherriDalton

    You have to break the bank just for music? Come on Sony, have you been paying attention to the economy here? I’d love to be able to get one, but not at those prices….

    • BELIEVEinMYTH

      Only in Japan anyways, nothing to see here. Im fine with playing my music on my smartphone.

    • Deads

      The price for the F880 devices is in line with what the competition charges for theirs.

      yeah the ZX1 costs a lot more but it also has higher quality parts.
      And the people that want a device with such specs (not all the specs have been released yet) are willing to pay such a premium price.
      They wont sell an incredible amount of the ZX1 but they just want to tap into that market.

      If the ZX1 is to expensive for you then you can go with the F880 and if thats also to expensive for you then Sony also has models that are around 100 euro.

      Sony is simply trying to have a large range of products, nothing wrong with that.

  • schitzengigles10

    Chargin’ Apple prices for these things

    • BELIEVEinMYTH

      At least theyre WORTH the price. Apple products in general are not.

      • RahjerDat

        No they not at all. You can hate Apple and thats fine but no MP3 player on this Earth is worth that much.

        • BELIEVEinMYTH

          Well hopefully its akin to the iPod touch (did i just say that?) where it does more than play music, maybe video too ? It seems that it also has wifi, nfc, and bluetooth, those are the things that probably pumped up the price, though i dont know how much use a person buying it as a standalone MP3 player would do with those things.

          • jaylanPHNX

            It is Android based with Play Store access.

          • BELIEVEinMYTH

            Oh well thats cool ! So you can choose to listen to music or play games, etc.

  • Dan

    Obviously people with a smart phone won’t be interested, even then, I’d get an iPod touch.

  • Craig Becker

    The high end audio component is pretty cool. 192k with fully lossless audio codec. Have to be a real audiophile to pony up cash for this device that only plays music. Kind of gets away from the idea of carrying 1 device to do it all. It does have its place in the market I feel.

    • Jordan Caviness

      all for which i will be buying the F880 32gb.

  • http://about.me/marianneevans Marianne

    It’s because we all still feel a little bit bad for Bartman. Poor guy.

  • Bryan Mordt

    These prices are typical for Sony unfortunately. I know a lot of people listen to music from their smart phones but I think there is a decent market for quality mp3 player that has nice features i.e. bluetooth and touchscreen.

  • Jordan Caviness

    i am very interested. but is there expandable storage? lossless audio files are a bit bigger than average 4-8mb mp3s, they can be 13-26mb….may have to go with a 32gb for ≈300…that’s the sweet spot for this product line.

  • jaylanPHNX

    I need a standalone music player for work because we’re not allowed to have our phones. I bought a Sprint Galaxy S 3 with a bad esn for cheap off craigslist, then taped over the camera, installed an aosp ROM, and a 64 GB SD card. Using a kernel with Faux Sound, it sounds great.

  • Anthony Tran

    Honestly, unless you’re an audiophile and have at least moderately good headphones, most people won’t hear the difference between this and their smartphones. On my phone, I can certainly hear a difference between headphone sets, but if I plug those same headphones into my phone, laptop, or speakers, I typically can’t hear too much difference. They should really focus on putting this stuff in their phones and market it like Beats.

    • Deads

      Its true what you say but besides having good headphones it is also important that the device being used is strong enough to get the most out of the used headphones.

      A lot of devices just dont have enough power on the jack to get the most out of a good set of headphones.

      Gotta say that the NW-ZX1 looks incredibly sexy. Wouldnt mind if Sony would release some more info about the internals.