If you've ever owned an original Sony Walkman from the 1970s, you may be interested to see what's become of it. A recently released version of the Walkman, the NW-A35 shows you just how much the music player has grown up – and become smaller.
The modern avatar of the Walkman is now a biscuit-thin device that is a snug fit in your palm and slips easily into a pocket. Gone are the clunky buttons of the old Walkman as the current day version is all digital and high-end. The A35 is rectangular and looks like a digital recorder. Sony has always liked understated minimalistic forms, and the new Walkman follows the same design philosophy.
The Walkman A35 is small, sturdy looking, and made of some metallic material in grey-black. It's got dead-simple control buttons on one side for play, stop, forward, rewind, etc. There's also one button to lock all controls so that they're not accidentally touched. The buttons are all small but very clear and easy to use showing quite well how attention to detail has been given while designing the player. On the left, there is a microSD card slot which can be expanded up to 128GB, adding to the 16GB onboard the A35.
The top part of the player has a 3.1-inch colour display that's nice and clear. The bottom half has music controls, this time virtually. But it's more than the looks of this music player that puts it above listening to tunes on your mobile phone. It supports hi-res music and can handle many formats of lossless music. The catch is that you need to use a pair of headphones that also support hi-resolution sound, at least if you plan on getting the most out of the device. The quality drops to ordinary if you use regular headphones or earphones and if that's all you require then you may as well listen to music on your phone. But if you're at all discerning about sound quality, you'll need to invest in hi-res audio headphones. When you have that in place, the player sounds clear and wholesome without leaning on the bass overly. There's even some amount of noise cancellation: it cuts out steady sound such as from an air conditioner.
The A35 has a proprietary charging cable and takes about four hours to charge. It gives you about two days of battery life. At Rs 15,990,
it's what you'd expect out of an iPod.