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Old 07-18-2011, 03:29 PM
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Reddlemagne Reddlemagne is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Canada
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Smile First impressions: C2

Hello hello, I just got the C2 in the mail today, and I intend to, at some point, do a full on review. Given that I'm going to be a fair bit busy in the next couple of weeks, for now, I'm just going to post up some initial impressions.

Now, to start with, I've never owned a Cowon player before. To date, I've owned a Creative Zen (I forget the type. It's older than dirt) iPod 5.5 (rockbox'd), Zune 30, Zune 80, a Philips GoGear (Returned, didn't read cards), a hacked nook color (which I refuse to call a true PMP, given how crappy and choppy music played on it is) and my faithful P3 (which broke, and I somehow managed to fix. Don't ask). Using only those as experience, here's my impressions:

Look/feel
Right out of the box, I found the device to have a rather pleasant form factor, reminding me of a very smooth pebble (if pebble's were square, mind), and I certainly appreciated the heft and thickness with this design. This certainly makes this easier to handle for a guy like me with big mitts (Hands almost the size of shovels). Something that did alarm me a bit was because of the slant sides on the player, the buttons looked like they were bulging out a bit, making me wonder if this was rushed during production, but after flipping it around in my hands a bit, I found it was just my eyes messing with me. The metal back is definitely nice, but started picking up fingerprints the moment I picked it up. The plastic face was certainly no slouch when it comes to making this player look nice, and like the metal back, has a very sturdy feeling. If I were to nitpick a bit about this player, it would certainly be the port cover for the cable, as well as the micro SD card. Besides having to fight with the door flap in order to insert the cord, It wasn't immediately clear to me just how hard or how far I was supposed to put the plug in. I was worried when it gave in after pressing a bit harder than usual that I had broken it, and wished that Cowon could've either made the door removable, or made it stretch out a bit more, so I don't have to fight with it so much. Overall, the entire device has a very solid feel, no cracking or clicking when I pressed on it, and the plain look gives it a bit more of a professional air in terms of look and feel.

UI
Now, like I said above, I have never owned, nor used a Cowon type player before, and beforehand, I heard a fair bit of flak over the interface. When I first switched it on, I was certainly surprised by the animated interface, with the words "Siesta now" above the time, lending a very neat, clean feeling to the beginning. As for the actual loadup time, it does seem to take a bit longer than the P3, but it didn't bother me unduly. Flipping around the various icons is a bit irksome, and I honestly wished they could've either used a Zune type wording format, or at the least included it as a theme option. The other theme seems to group them closer together, making it easier to get to where you want to quicker, but I also noticed you lose a few options after doing this. I feel that the interface is merely a resounding meh, and isn't something I'd like to use while cruising down the road to work, and basically give it the "useable, and nothing else" rating.

Screen
The screen itself is pretty good, given the type of player this is. Playing MLP vids (Yes, I watch em. Shut up.), the image is good enough (I've seen some truly atrocious screens on some of my friend's players), perhaps a bit above average in terms of screen types, the colors were good, the brightness and contrast was excellent, and while the size did bother me slightly, it was certainly better than the Philips GoGear Muse (So washed out, turning the brightness down didn't help). Overall, I certainly wouldn't mind videos on this, if it was all that I had. For now, I'll stick to my P3 for videos. As for the touchscreen, it's a very meh sort of screen. Nothing above average, nothing outstanding. I will warn you that until you get used to it, there will be unresponsive swipes. I should also warn you that if you decide to calibrate it, you'd better have something tiny to reach the corners of the screen, because when I tried out the calibration, I ended up having to use the tips of my sunglasses to press em (stupid meaty fingers). The screen, overall, is pretty good, but fairly unimpressive, merely doing the job it was tasked with.

Music/Sound
Quite frankly, the sound was what made up for the entire player, making it more than worth the cost. I haven't done extensive testing yet, but so far, it has some of the cleanest sound my ears have had the grace to listen to. Normal, admittedly, does sound a bit thin and weak, but once I tried out the BBE Mach3Bass at the suggestion of one of the posters here, I certainly loved the full sound, and excellent bass the lil player was pumping out. Out of all the players I've used so far, the only one that comes close would have to be the Zune 80 (Considering the Zune 80 axed the EQ, Microsoft basically has nothing on this player). I still need to do some more testing out, so take what I said here tentatively. Basic rule of players: Everyone's ears are different.

Included Headphones
The included headphones are all right, but like the screen, very meh. Bass is a bit too tinny, even with BBE Mach3Bass activated. I cranked up track 4 of the MDK 2 soundtrack (Certainly an underrated game soundtrack), the bass just sounded weak, pitiful, and not very head-bang-y. I tossed my Zune 80 Headphones on (which is what I use for my P3, and is all I currently have on hand), and it made a world of difference. Definitely break out for some better phones. This player deserves better.

Built in speaker
Certainly better than the mono speaker my P3 rocks, it doesn't quite get loud enough for my tastes. While the sound is good, you certainly won't be starting a rock out fest in the back of your van, or creating a lighswitch rave with your friends at your house.

Card reader
Since my card happens to be at home (Where i'm not, coincidentally), I won't be able to give you my thoughts on this just yet.

Battery life
Again, I just charged this device today, and I haven't had enough time to give a proper run down. I will say that it does charge pretty quick, going from 50% to 100% in about 45 minutes.

Extras
Haven't played around with them too much, but they appear to work as advertized. I have given the radio a decent play-through, and sounds pretty good (at least if you like country. I hate the stations around here. Makes you wonder why I bought this player in the first place, don't it?), signal came in loud and clear. I'd fiddle with it more, but the stations don't really give me a compelling reason to. Perhaps I'll try it out in Arizona.

Overall
Sound. Soundsoundsound. If you want plenty of good sound, a solid build quality, no frills, and all right video, at a relatively fair price (once the prices quit fluxing so much), then the C2 is definitely an excellent purchase. Just don't expect it to be too much of an iPod killer, get a good set of phones, take some time to adjust to the resistive screen and meh UI, and rock on into the sunset.

(This will be updated at time passes, and I quit traveling so much)
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Last edited by Reddlemagne; 07-18-2011 at 03:59 PM. Reason: Cleanup
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c2, cowon, humor, review

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