IFA 2006: Creative Launches Zen Vision W

A necessary upgrade in an otherwise quiet IFA for Creative.

With all the buzz around Microsoft’s impending Zune, SanDisk’s fantastic e series and speculation about what Apple has in store for us before the end of the year Creative has been rather lost in the static. It had a nice surprise in store for us at IFA though.


The Zen Vision W is a nifty upgrade to the already tasty Zen Vision we first saw back in June last year. As the name suggests, this is a widescreen variation on the original and I can tell you that up close and personal it is an absolute stonker.

The vibrancy, clarity and high 480 x 272 resolution make it the best PMP video quality I’ve seen to date. This was backed up by the fact Creative was outputting content directly from the Vision W to a 40in widescreen TV and it appeared no worse than standard analogue TV. Couple this with a choice of 30 or 60GB HDDs, support for Mpeg1, 2, 4, WMV9, AVI, DivX and XviD formats and up to 4.5 hours of playback on a single charge or 13 hours of music and Creative could be onto a winner.


There’s also an integrated FM tuner with 32 selectable station setting, personal organiser that can sync with Outlook and though it isn’t the most portable of devices (134 x 75 x 26.4mm and 276g) it was still drawing in the crowds. We don’t have a UK release date yet but it will debut in the Far East this month with RRPs of S$649 (£216) and S$749 (£249) respectively and surely has a darn good shot of a European launch.


Elsewhere there was little we haven’t seen before though this speaker dock – which accepts any size of Creative player – was a new one on me and also reminded me just how teeny the dinky Zen V Plus is. No further details as yet.