Dedicated music players are dead, right? Smartphones are taking over the world, and their proliferation is making these WiFi-only products quite unnecessary. But manufacturers are not giving up just yet. Music player makers like Pioneer are turning to an audience that just might be worth targeting – audiophiles.
The all-new Pioneer XDP-100R Android music player promises audio quality no average smartphone is able to achieve. Packed within its guts you can find enough audio power to blow your ears away. For starters, the unit supports DSD, DSF, DSD-IFF, MQA, FLAC, ALAC, WAV, AIFF, Ogg Vorbis-, MP3 and AAC formats. The company has also added a second processing unit just to run audio components. As a result, the company claims digital noise will be done away with. The XDP-100R can also play a frequency range from 20 to 80,000 Hz.
We know many of you didn’t understand much of that, so let’s skip to the parts the usual tech geek does understand. What is this device like, purely as an Android product? Pioneer isn’t being too open about the specs… and with good reason. This product is not for performance users! What we do know is that it has a 4.7-inch 720p display and 32 GB of internal storage to fit all your songs. If that is not enough, it’s possible to expand the memory via a couple microSD slots, each supporting cards of up to 128 GB. That’s a hell of a lot of storage, but it will fill up quickly if you store plenty of high-definition music in there.
If it looks familiar, it may be because you glanced at it during IFA, where it was first seen. It sure is nice to see it again, though. Overall, the design looks very interesting and you can compare the build quality to what Sony has done with the NW-ZX2 Walkman. The Pioneer XDP-100R is made of aluminum and features a sturdy, but bulky body (at least compared to modern smartphones). Measurements come in at 128.9×75.9×13 mm. To put that into perspective, a Samsung Galaxy S6 is only 6.8mm thick!
Did the Pioneer XDP-100R catch your eye (or ear)? It’s certainly not cheap, but it also won’t break the bank like Sony’s option, which costs well over a grand. Pioneer’s high definition music player is to be released for about $500 in Japan, starting November. We will have to wait around to learn about pricing and availability in other markets.
Who is trying to get one of these? I can see DJs being interested, as well as music professionals and hard core audio fans.