Nostalgia brings alongside each consolation and craving. But it’s additionally a tough highway to go down. There’s at all times this trepidation about how one would really feel now, about stuff you as soon as noticed with rose-tinted glasses!
While unpacking the brand new Sony Walkman A-306, I couldn’t shake off this precise feeling. I puzzled if it’ll carry alive a way of romantic nostalgia for the ‘90s or whether or not it might fall wanting any modern-day expectations I might need of the machine.
Opening the field, I noticed a small machine, nearly 3.6 inches throughout. Given its tiny kind issue, the Walkman A-306 weighs nearly 113 grams. The aluminium body has a matte end on the rear with pronounced ridges all through.
All the bodily buttons on the machine relaxation on the left bezel. Placed on prime is the facility button, with the quantity buttons slightly below. There are bodily controls for observe navigation, too – play/pause, ahead, and rewind. A small tactile bump helps establish the quantity up and play buttons after I’m not wanting on the machine. There’s additionally a Hold button, which, when enabled, disables the opposite bodily buttons. This feels redundant, as all of the bodily buttons want a agency press to activate. There’s additionally a microSD card slot and a 3.5 mm jack on the backside.
Powering up takes a while, and I set it up like an Android telephone. The machine jogs my memory of smartphones from about 12-13 years in the past that might have displayed this dimension. I can’t make any calls on the Walkman, after all, however all the pieces else seems like utilizing a decade-old telephone.
I paired the machine with TWS earbuds, and the acoustic expertise was immersive. The Dynamic Normaliser is without doubt one of the best- preset equalisers I’ve skilled on a playback machine. You can select to have the ‘Direct Source’ on, which streams the file’s authentic sound high quality immediately with out making use of any sound results. But the second I faucet it off and swap to the Dynamic Normaliser, the music turns into even deeper and extra resonant. The identical goes for after I flip on ClearAudio+. Although the tracks I performed got here by way of with readability already, this characteristic selects the most effective sound subject to ship every soundtrack I’m listening to and does a beautiful job of it.
There’s additionally DSEE Ultimate, which I might flip on or off, which upscales compressed audio information, nevertheless it wanted me to restart the machine after I wished to make use of the characteristic.
Running on Android 12, the machine comes pre-loaded with the same old suite of Google apps. Done usually or for extended durations, checking mail and searching the online on the Walkman seems like an excessive amount of of a pressure on the tiny display. Typing will get a bit difficult, too, given the area constraint.
The machine itself shouldn’t be with out glitches. For starters, all the pieces appears to take longer than I’m used to on devices now. Powering on the machine takes a great minute every time. Firing up the Walkman app to take heed to some music and even logging in to test my mail – all capabilities appear to take a few seconds too lengthy.
There’s 32 GB of storage on the music participant, of which the system takes up a giant chunk – 14 GB. The relaxation 18 GB may match about 700 FLAC information (Free Lossless Audio Codec) or nearly 1,600 MP3 information.
Battery life is one factor I don’t have to fret about. With a few hours of utilization day by day, nearly 3-4 days go by earlier than I’ve to plug it again in. If you’re primarily going to load and play lossless information, the battery life will likely be shorter.
While the Sony Walkman A-306 shines by way of with all issues music and acoustics, it must meet up with quicker efficiency general. And I wouldn’t thoughts a sleeker, fancier-looking machine whereas they’re at it!
Price – ₹25,990
Pros – Excellent music streaming capabilities, helps lossless codecs
Cons – Laggy efficiency, restricted storage for high-res information