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Sound quality and portability are perfect, with the android system which surely brings a lot of convenience, really getting tired of transferring music files through computer by cable.
My only complaint, same as other reviews, is the battery, yes, the battery life is…embarrassing somehow, if you play music via wifi, the battery will go down fast as hell. So what I usually do is listening the downloaded songs by switching to airplane mode, also turning on the battery saver fonction, this will help the battery life maintaining to a acceptable level.
Hope Sony can work on this and give some software optimization possibly, otherwise this is a real nice device!
Let me start by saying this. Sony sure knows how to build hardware, the NW-A105 feels great in the hand, very portable, not too heavy, not too light, just right! I'm no audiophile by any definition but I know enough to not be audio-fooled with snake-oil claims. Sure Sony limits the audio format on this device to 16-Bit/44.1 kHz but that's just CD audio quality and that's good enough for me and my average human hearing. At the end of the day, you do notice the difference between the music played by this NW-A105 Walkman and your average smartphone. Also, I strongly believe this device was meant for those of us who like to listen to our own music files, carefully recorded and catalogued, hopefully in FLAC or another lossless music format. If you mostly stream music through Spotify or Tidal, it's probably best to look elsewhere, your phone will do for now until the battery problem is solved in future models.
It's only been a week or so since I've owned this device and I am quite enjoying the experience so far. After deliberating for days between the NW-A105 and the NW-A55 (got both to compare on a test run), I still went for the A105 as it provides Android functionality, Wifi and USB-C connectivity. On the battery life, yes the A55 leaves the A-105 in the dust, it's embarrasing! Having Android functionality also brings the issue of security and access to personal data since you need to use a google account to set up this device. I found a way around battery life though, as well as having to input a password every time I want to check the screen for some reason. I slapped on a wireless charging adapter in the back, which you can find for around C$15. If the battery is running low I just put the device in the wireless charging pad and problem solved, no need to connect to USB to charge and I still get to listen to music! To avoid using a password, I just "pin the app" so I can continue using the music player without having to input a password everytime I need to browse but you're limited to using the app you pinned (i.e. the music player), and can't use any other apps unless you put in the password again. This leads me to the point made earlier, I think this device was meant for those who just want to listen to music (specifically pre-recorded audio files), but with the bonus of having Wifi if you need to download firmware updates or another app to listen to music, occasionally browsing the internet, etc.
Product comes with Android 9 with pre installed sound boost apps like S Clear audio, Bass boost, Voice clear....etc. Sony's Walkman app tried almost to Poweramp.... Overall satisfied product with Complete metal body and compact engineering. Thanks to Sony.
I rarely write reviews, but couldn't help myself with for this current purchase. Prior to pulling the trigger to purchase this, I watched several youtube reviews for it. One of the review did reference the (horrible) battery life, but I didn't really think too much about it bc the reviewer said his device needed to be charged after 2 days or so. This is where I am abosultely beside myself: the battery drains out while the device is sitting idled, not even used! Are you serious?! Since this specific device is using Android/Google OS and preloaded with a bunch of Apps (most Android/Google), I am wondering if that is why the battery is draining while it is just sitting there. I contacted a SONY (virtual assistant), and point me to a page with some suggestions, such as: • Adjust the screen brightness. • Turn off all sound adjustments. • Turn off the Bluetooth function when you are not using it. • Turn off the NFC function when you are not using it. • Turn off the Wi-Fi function when you are not using it. • Turn off the Noise canceling function. • Turn off Ambient sound mode. Also: it is 16GB, however about 6/7GB is already used for preloaded Android/Google Apps, and you CANOT remove them! So you will most likely need to use your SDMICRO Card for additional memory as I had to. I may decide whether or not to write another review (updates) after I try some of these "battery" savings tips. If they don't work - I will for sure return it, and look into another MP3 device. Thanks for reading.
Look I'm going to start this by saying that this is NOT a device for everyone in my opinion. If you are not used to Android, you won't find the experience of this device enjoyable (unless you are willing to go through the customization and tweaks Android offers, which is to me is the fun part.) Let's get the elephant in the room out of the way: Battery. Android is a battery hog, it's always been, and it'll always be that way unless Google somehow can make more money off better batteries. If you are annoyed by having to charge your DAP at least once a day or so if you're a heavy user then this isn't your device. Hell, it may drain too fast for the average user, too! I personally use this on my hour long commute to work every morning for a week now, whether I'm playing offline Spotify tracks or straight up streaming through a hotspot...well...guess what my car has? A charger! Who would've thought! Sure it may not be an convenience for everyone, but it's an option for most nonetheless.
I get to work, and I use this pretty much all during all of my working day. Whether it's connected to my Bluetooth speaker, or my Sony MDR-1AM2 it sounds amazing! It drives my headphones better than my Pixel 3 does. If I lost a lot of juice during the day, no worries, I have like 2 Type C chargers in my office. Neat. By the time I leave work at 5 I can easily either charge it in the car or do so when I get home. Charging this device is not and will never be an issue for me.
Now, having Android 9 in the size and the weight of this device is an incredible feat. Good job on that, Sony. I've been wanting an affordable Android Sony DAP for a really long time and I'm so glad they finally delivered this little fella. This may not replace your high-end DAPs in terms of sound or functionality, but to me and to my kind of usage it is simply perfect. I wanted to give this 4 stars due to the lack of accessories, they could've easily included a case or something. Oh well. Not big of a deal. I just couldn't give it any less than five stars due to how convenient this been in my life in the last few days.
Spotify, Deezer HiFi, and FLAC all play smoothly and sound incredible on my headphones. I am not an Audiophile, so keep that in mind. I'll say this though, under the influence of the devil's grass this walkman has provided a very enjoyable experience and I believe it'll continue to prove that it's a worthy companion in my sweatpants or shirt pocket. Yeah. It's that small and light.
All in all, if you're familiar with Android, and you want a small, portable, dedicated device that will allow you to enjoy music without the distractions of your phone notifications, won't break the bank, and with such a customization interface then you should at least give it a week to test it and see how you feel about it.
Oh, I almost forgot, get a memory card, trust me. 16GB might as well be nonexistent whatsoever. Lol. Like come on Sony. Japan has a 32gb and 64gb models, but this one so far doesn't. I shoved a 256gb Samsung memory card and so far haven't had issues with it whatsoever.
I published this review on Kurt Cobain's birthday, and I've been using this Walkman all day to listen to Nirvana and Christian Death. Sometimes it's the small things in life that make the biggest difference on our lives.
Six months later update:
I had given this 5 stars originally, but I decided to update this and give it a 3 instead. Two problems: battery. Wow. This was not improved by the updates whatsoever. It only got worse. It just became very annoying.
Also, Spotify takes FOREVER to load from the memory card. And I do mean forever. Whether I'm trying to load an artist or a playlist. Often than not I'd have to restart the device to be able to get Spotify to work properly and it doesn't work for long before I have to do it again. I like this device, don't get me wrong, but I expected to get my money's worth and I simply didn't. This DAP definitely needs to be babied.
(02/07/2020, I returned it) First, I like the sound quality. It small and pretty good. But the battery is terrible, about 8-10 hours not even using must. The most important is I didn’t get the earphone cost about $120 on ebay and the soft case that come with the item like what the seller said on the website. It was ok cuz I got the $74 discount. Then after 3 days I found out that the screen has tiny backlight bleeding. Sure I contacted customer service to asking for help but he was very rude to me. Tks anyway