Sony introduces 20GB hard drive Walkman

Music fans can get up to 35 hours on one battery charge with the latest addition to Sony's Walkman family.

The company released this week the NWA3000, a 20GB version of a product line which previously came with a 6GB hard drive. The Walkman weighs 182 grams and measures 65.2 x 104.2 x 21.4mm.

The product supports ATRAC3, MP3 and WMA file formats. If all the files are played back in ATRAC3, consumers will get a battery life of 35 hours, said Sony's personal audio product manager, Chips Pang. "[MP3 and WMA "were not very far behind", he said. According to Pang users can expect a battery life approaching 30 hours with the latter two formats.

In contrast, the 6GB NWA1000 had a battery life with ATRAC3 playback at 20 hours.

The NWA3000 is a different form factor to the NWHD1 that was released last year. Additionally, a the new Walkman sports an Organic electroluminescent (EL) display which means it does not need to be backlit like an LCD display. This has an obvious benefit: "It is friendly on the battery life," Pang said.

The NW3 also comes with new software called Connect Player, unlike the SonicStage that shipped with the NWHD1. When Connect Player is loaded onto a PC it connects to the Internet and can retrieve information, such as the genre, about each song. When users play that song on the Walkman the Walkman knows the genre and can randomly select other songs that match.

The NWA3000 costs $449, while the 6GB NWA1000 costs $379.

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Howard Dahdah

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