Thursday, August 24, 2006

Iriver Clix: Battling for Flash Supremecy over the Ipod nano, Sansa e200 series.

The iriver Clix is a rebranded version of last year'sirover U10, which offered a groundbreaking new design in an overpriced package. The Clix is physically identical to its predecessor, but its interface has been overhauled, its performance improved, its capacity increased, and its price has dropped substantially. The 2GB model costs $199.99 (list), which is in line with Apple's 2GB Ipod Nano. The player's preloaded Macromedia Flash-based video game set now includes Sudoku. Goodbye, sweet productivity!

At 2.7 by 1.8 by 0.6 inches and 2.5 ounces, the U10 seems a bit bulky, but it's really not any bigger than ultrathin players such as the Samsung Yepp YP-Z5 and the SanDisk Sansa e260—it's just shorter and stockier. There are also a pair of volume buttons along the top and a Smart button (somewhat cryptically labeled with a star) and power button on the right side. The Smart button is customizable from within the Settings menu. You can set it to take you to the main menu, toggle the display orientation between portrait and landscape, play/pause music, shuffle music, or start/stop recording.

Pros: Cool-looking design. Very good sound quality. Lots of extras, including Flash video games. Long battery life.

Click screen can be annoying to use. Nonremovable battery. No lossless compression or support. No included video-conversion software. Video frame rate is only 15 fps.

Bottom Line:
The Clix is a nice player that offers very good audio and photo quality, long battery life, and a host of extras.

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