Samsung YP-S2 (Pebble)
Cute and glossy entry-level MP3 player
- Tiny, cute design, easy to use
- No LCD screen, simple feature set
Samsung's YP-S2 Pebble MP3 player is a unit for those after something basic. It does a good job with music playback and it looks stylish, but it lacks the features of its more expensive counterparts.
Following in the footsteps of Creative's successful Zen Stone player, another rock-like device has just joined the portable music player space. Samsung's YP-S2, dubbed the Pebble, is an entry-level, flash-based music player that keeps things nice and simple. It lacks any kind of complicated features and has no LCD display, but for users after a cheap, simple device as a backup or even as their main player the Pebble is an attractive option.
As with the iPod shuffle, this unit is a no frills and no fuss device. If you're after fancy EQ settings, FM radios and so on then you need to look elsewhere. This unit simply has a play/pause button, track skip and volume keys, as well as a single smart function key to alter the play mode. It does have shuffle and loop modes and supports playlists made on the device itself, but they can be fiddly to make at the best of times.
The only other feature of note is DNSe 2.0, which stands for Digital Natural Sound engine. This acts as a kind of all-purpose equaliser. It made the sound a touch richer and extends the bass a little more, but like most digital enhancements it also made things sound more synthetic and some audio purists will probably prefer it switched off.
Even without DNSe running the sound quality is pretty good. Bass extends nicely and there is a good amount of detail in the mid and high ranges. The unit supports a fairly basic array of file formats — just OGG, WMA and MP3 — but it's easy to add files by just dragging and dropping them when the Pebble is connected to a computer.
The controls are tactile and responsive and should prove easy to use even for complete novices. The whole device appears to be designed with simplicity in mind.
Aesthetically, the Pebble fits its name nicely. It's a small, circular shaped device that when flipped over could be mistaken for a rock (albeit a glossy black one). The cute design should appeal to fashion-conscious buyers, but the glossy finish does suffer the age-old problem of attracting fingerprints. Because it has no LCD it is a little difficult to find specific tracks, but this isn't a deal-breaker by any stretch of the imagination.
The headphones double as a lanyard, so you can hang the Pebble around your neck. The included headphones themselves are pretty good considering the cost of the overall package; they won't satisfy audiophiles but they're certainly better than run-of-the-mill ear buds.
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PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
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