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Sony Unveils New S Series Walkman PMPs

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The Walkman brand is probably one of the greatest cautionary tales of modern technology. Utterly dominant in the 1980s and early 90s, Sony overlooked the MP3 player revolution (and remarkably MP3 format support) and watched the iPod take over. For the audiophile however the Walkman brand still means a lot and Sony's latest addition may well tempt them to bend a little plastic...

The Walkman S series has had an annual refresh replacing the 16GB NWZ-S639F, NWZ-S738F and NWZ-S736 with the NWZ-S540 line. Or at least it appears that way - Sony please sort your product names out!

Either way, the 10.2mm thick S540s seem competent enough with 2.4in QVGA LCD displays, FM tuners with recording and support for MP3, protected WMA, AAC audio and H.264 and WMV video. Sony excels as usual on battery life quoting 42 hours for music and 6.5 hours for video. The range also sports integrated speakers, but in use this will drop battery life to 17 hours (audio) and five hours (video) respectively.

No doubt audio quality will be up to the Walkman's usual high standard with 8GB and 16GB versions going for $110 and $130 and a choice of black, pink, violet and red finishes available at launch this month.

'In related news Sony has also announced the E Series is also now on sale. It looks much the same at the S Series with slightly reduced battery life (30 hours audio, six hours video) and a smaller 2in display. Pricing here is a horribly self cannibalising $80 and $100.

Yep, Sony you really do need to sort things out...

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