• Memory Size: 128GB
  • Screen Size: 3.0 inches
  • Battery Life: 45 hours (Hi Res Audio), 70 hours (lossy audio)
  • Pros:
  • Performance
  • Features
  • Cons:
  • Price

Music To The Ears

Back in the 90s, the Walkman was easily one of Sony’s pride and joy. Every cool kid had a Walkman in their hands, a portable music player that was brought around to play music, while looking hip at the same time. Years have passed, and while the way we listen to music has definitely changed, Sony is looking to bring the Walkman to prominence once again with the Sony Walkman ZX100.

The ZX100 sports a super premium build, from its highly rigid magnesium alloy frame, that keeps the Walkman’s circuit board secure, to the solders and capacitors used to ensure that signal purity is kept to its highest levels, and insulated boards that keep electromagnetic distortions to a minimum, reducing power loss, and ensuring the device runs as smoothly as possible.
If you’re a lossless audio collector, you’ll be happy to know that the ZX100 plays a wide range of lossless audio codecs, including FLAC, ALAC, WAVE and even Hi-Res Audio. Currently there are very few Hi-Res Audio playback devices in the market, and the ZX100 is one of few devices that does exactly that.

The ZX100 sports a 3.0 inch display with a resolution of 400×240 pixels that is bright enough for you to use both indoors and outdoors with very little issues. Inside, the ZX100 sports 128GBs of storage, although if you ever find the need to expand it, due to the large file sizes of lossless audio, the device also comes with a microSD card slot.

As far as battery life goes, Sony has mentioned that the ZX100 has a rated battery life of 70 hours for MP3 playback, and 45 hours for Hi-Res Audio playback. We’re happy to say that ever since we did a full charge on the device, we’ve never had to charge it back yet, at the time of writing.

Listening to songs on the ZX100 is pure joy, and exponentially so if the audio source is lossless, and you pair it with a pair of headphones like the Sony MDR-1A, which is capable of taking advantage of the ZX100’s components.

The mids and lows are clearly audible, with the highs not being harsh on the ears, and the bass sounding tight and not overblown. Even with lossy files like MP3, the ZX100 comes with an upsampler that restores a bit of quality to lossy music files.

CHIP CONCLUDE: The Sony Walkman ZX100 is a great music player to consider if you’re an audiophile with a lossless music collection that you’d like to bring around.

(previously published in issue January 2016)

Sony Walkman ZX-100