Samsung YP-D1

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Samsung YP-D1
  • Samsung YP-D1
  • Samsung YP-D1
  • Samsung YP-D1

Pros

  • Sounds great, Camera, Lots of functionality

Cons

  • Limited video support

Bottom Line

The YP-D1 is a great digital music player, sporting camera and video functionality in addition to great sound quality.

Would you buy this?

  • Buy now (Selling at 10 stores)

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We seem to be getting more and more combination devices through the GoodGearGuide office lately. Digital video cameras that are also MP3 players, GPS units with PDA functionality - the list goes on. The Samsung YP-D1 is one such device. Its design makes you instantly think of a mobile phone, yet it actually combines a very competent MP3 player with a two megapixel digital camera, a hybrid we haven't seen before.

This makes for an excellent device. The body looks quite small, but when placed side-by-side with an iPod nano we discovered that this was deceptive. The YP-D1 is only slightly shorter than the nano, but is a lot wider. It still sits comfortably in your pocket, but it isn't as slim as the nano. Finished in matte white with silver rims it looks fairly plain, and the slightly curved edges along with the screen placement make it resemble a mobile phone.

As a multimedia player, the quality of the screen is an important factor and the YP-D1 holds up fairly well in this regard. It isn't the best screen we've ever laid eyes on, but the 1.8-inch LCD display is bright and colourful. We still don't fully understand who is going to watch video files on such a small screen, but the option is there. However, please note that for video the YP-D1 is an MP4 only device. Audio support is a little broader, allowing you to play MP3, WAV, Ogg Vorbis and WMA. This covers most of the basics, and aside from FLAC support we couldn't really ask for anything more. Fortunately, even when listening to plain old MP3s this unit sounds great. The included ear buds were of a surprising quality, way above what we normally find packaged with digital music players. They did lack a little in the bass department compared to a third party pair, but their upper mid range and treble were excellent.

Of course it's easy for headphones to sound excellent when your source is outputting great sound, and the YP-D1 does just this. This small but powerful player has a balanced, pleasing sound which doesn't overemphasise any one part of the music. There is a nice variety of equalizer settings, including Jazz, Rock and a variety of three dimensional modes, but we found them largely unnecessary as the default sound was excellent.

We weren't quite as impressed with the controls and interface. Once you get the hang of it you'll find it to be fairly practical, but it isn't as intuitive as it could be and we fumbled around for our first few minutes before settling in. It uses two directional buttons and a third up and down toggle, giving four-way navigation, but in some instances you have to use the directional keys to select menu items and other times it is the toggle; it isn't always clear. The controls are rounded out by camera, menu and play buttons on the right hand side and a hold switch on the left.

Sound quality aside, the other cool thing about this device is the camera. An MP3 player with a camera isn't a totally innovative idea, but this is fairly rare, and the two megapixel CMOS sensor in the YP-D1 does a fairly adequate job. The shots we took were easily on par with the two megapixel shots taken by most camera phones, with fairly good colour balance and reasonably sharp edges. It isn't going to replace your standalone digital camera but it's a good start if you don't have a camera phone.

The YP-D1's features don't just stop at digital music and photography; this unit is packed to the brim with functionality. It can record video with the camera (although is limited to the proprietary SMF format), view text and images and has a built in FM receiver. All of these functions work flawlessly, the video is of a low quality but can still be viewed comfortably, and although the screen is a little small to make text and images really enjoyable, it is a nice touch.

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