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How Versatile Should Your Multi-media Player Be?

Dec 5, 2007
You have three basic options of the type of multimedia player to buy. There is a player that comes with a hard disc for program storage, another that uses flash memory (memory sticks, flash cards, etc.) and yet another using standard CD format with storage of music in mp3 or other compressed formats.

Features, design, usability and battery life differ with each manufacturer. Before you zero in on the model you want, consider the pros and cons of every product.

Your selection is likely to be affected by developments in the availability of online music and video programming. The ability of your multimedia player to share different media formats and protection will matter, too.

Go for a multi-dimensional portable video player, if you plan to watch movies or TV while traveling. Apart from playing music and video, it allows you to view digital photos. Features like recording video from VCR or TV are present in some models.

The player must enable you to record from your TV or other video sources, such as a DVD player, VCR, or camcorder, in MPEG-4 format. Audio recording (PCM or ADPCM WAV) on this multi-media player should be very effective. You should also be able to use it as a camcorder, by just connecting it to a digital camera using a DVR travel adapter.

The quality of your multimedia experience will depend on the speed of loading and unloading of the player. Is the hard drive large enough to store your collection of movies, or MP3 music files, or an album of photos? Also, how useful is the player to carry with you when you travel, on a vacation, or for business?

Apart from movies, there should be sufficient memory to allow you to save thousands of songs or photos on the hard drive, using different formats such as MP3, WAV, WMA and WMA files. You should also be able to view formats like JPEG, BMP, and PNG.

If you want net access, opt for a WiFi model which should come equipped with a built-in browser and allow you to surf the net, and browse your email. Some players have podcatcher software that helps capture audio and video podcasts without having to use a PC.

The battery should allow music and video playback time of several hours, so that you can use the player while traveling. There should be a sufficiently long warranty period.

The complete package should have the portable media player and recorder, headphones, dedicated USB 2.0 cable, DVR station adapter, a pouch, quick-start guide, legal and safety notices.
About the Author
Richard J. Runion is the President of Geostar Richard J. Runion is the President of Geostar Publishing & Services LLC. Rich loves net research & blogging. His new blog on Archos 604 multimedia player is fast becoming popular.
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