Cylindrical sound device

The cylindrical JNC SSF-302 digital audio player is a cinch to use and has extensive functionality. It offers MP3 and WMA playback, has built-in FM radio, and also acts as a data storage device. Users such as students and journalists will appreciate the voice recording feature, which captures up to 16 hours of low quality voice in the built-in 256MB of memory.

The player is not expandable and this 256MB will actually let you store 239MB of files, simply by dragging and dropping them in Windows Explorer. There is no need for special interface software and the player shows up as a removable drive on the computer system. It connects via USB (1.1) and is powered by a single AAA battery. In my tests, this power source provided a very long 11.5 hours of non-stop MP3 playing at the maximum volume level, which is very loud!

The funky styling of the unit is comple­mented by a multi-coloured LCD back­light — you can choose one of seven colours as its background. The screen displays all the essential information about the player’s current status. Player controls are located along the bottom of the LCD display in single file, with a combination track skip/volume joystick to the left of the LCD.

The firmware has EQ settings, of which ‘Rock’ provides the best listening experience, and there are also play mode settings.

I have two small reservations about this player: the headphone jack is located too close to the necklace ring, which gets in the way if the headphone jack is slightly large; and the firmware takes a little too long to move from one track to the next when you press the skip button.

Price: $449
Vendor: JNC
Phone: (02) 9264 8677
URL: www.jnc-digital.com.au

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