Sony recently launched a new “cord-free” W series Walkman, and lucky for us they were kind enough to send over a unit for review. So let’s start with this, I agreed to do the review, but honestly was not all that sure how much I would like the style on a personal level. Without trying to give a huge spoiler, lets just say I was pleasantly surprised and have since become a fan of this style of MP3 player.
I would say I had the obvious fear in that it would not fit properly, which would cause the Walkman to slip around and/or fall while I was running. Needless to say that even with the high Florida humidity and some sweating the Walkman stayed in place.
As for wear and comfort, the W series Walkman ships with three sets of earbuds which allow for somewhat of a custom fit. In terms of explaining the setup, it’s almost like wearing a Bluetooth headset in each ear with a wire tight behind your head. In other words, you may not win any style points, but somehow it was refreshing to not have to worry about a headphone cable dangling. Of course, that is not to say the Walkman is bad looking, but we all know how we make fun of those who wear Bluetooth headsets.
Controlling the Walkman took a little getting used to, but the controls are fairly easy once you get familiar. They are split between both ear pieces with the volume up/down and play/pause on the left side with the shuffle and all switcher on the right side. Given I run on public roads the volume was the most important and with a button for up and a button for down it became simple enough.
Sound quality was very good, and was more than acceptable for a variety of music types as well as spoken work audio podcasts. The earbuds fit nicely in the ear, and were able to offer that very good quality in the quiet of my house as well as on the road with cars and wind noise.
Stepping back for a moment and touching on the setup process, overall, it was fairly simple. Basically all you need to do is connect your Walkman to your computer with the included USB cable and click the setup.exe file. From there it’s just a matter of following the steps. And then after the initial setup process was taken care of, transferring audio files can be done with Windows Media Player (version 11 or 12), iTunes using Content Transfer or by dragging and dropping using Windows Explorer. My preference was in number three, dragging and dropping.
I have used the Walkman W series for about two weeks now and can easily see it becoming a regular part of my running gear. I also would not hesitate to recommend this style of MP3 player, or more specifically the W series WZ-W252 Walkman.
Plus, there is still something that strikes me as cool by having a Sony Walkman, even if its not quite the same as what I had back in the 80’s. EG
Sony Walkman NWZ-W252 Water Resistant MP3 Player
• 2GB of storage
• 3 pairs of earbuds
• USB cable
• Built-in rechargeable Li-ion battery