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Sony NW-ZX300 Walkman®

High-resolution portable digital music player with Bluetooth®

3 Reviews

Item # 158NWZX300

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Overview

Our take on the Sony NW-ZX300 Walkman®

Hold the Sony NW-ZX300 Walkman in your hand. The heft of the milled aluminum casing lets you know this is a quality portable music player. The Walkman's powerful digital-to-analog converter (DAC) renders high-resolution files in their native resolution for pristine, better-than-CD sound.

Purpose-built for exceptional sound

Sony NW-ZX300

Hold the Sony NW-ZX300 Walkman in your hand. The heft of the milled aluminum casing lets you know this is a quality portable music player. The Walkman's powerful digital-to-analog converter (DAC) renders high-resolution files in their native resolution for pristine, better-than-CD sound.

Plus, the player's USB port lets you use the built-in DAC to play high-resolution sound from your computer through your headphones. (You can download high-res tunes from sites like HDtracks).

Advanced circuitry for high-res sources

The NW-ZX300 is compatible with high-res DSD files (up to 11.2MHz), PCM-based files (up to 32-bit/384kHz), Apple Lossless, and other formats. Sony's built-in Digital Sound Enhancement Engine can help MP3 and other lossy file formats sound fuller. Pair this Walkman with a great set of headphones, and you might discover details in your favorite tunes you've not heard before.

Ample storage for high-res files

The NW-ZX300 comes with 64GB of built-in storage — enough for over 1,000 CD-resolution songs. If you need more memory the player's microSD card slot can accommodate up to a 128GB card. That gives you up to 192GB of storage.

Bluetooth® compatible for wireless listening

With its built-in Bluetooth, you can stream music from this Sony player to your favorite Bluetooth speaker.  You can also use Bluetooth headphones to really cut down on cables. This player offers high-quality aptX® playback as well LDAC Hi-Fidelity wireless music streaming to compatible products. The better your headphones, the more detail you'll hear.

Advanced features for high-performance audio

The milled casing isn't just for looks — the aluminum shields the player's circuitry from electrical noise. High-quality film capacitors ensure uniform frequency response for low distortion. The player is also MQA-compatible. If you're a TIDAL subscriber, you can enjoy your music through this innovative high-resolution format.

The player has a traditional 3.5mm stereo headphone minijack and a 4.4mm balanced output jack. With compatible headphones, this balanced output gives you superior stereo imaging, with fully discrete right and left channels. 

Product Highlights:

  • plays MP3, FLAC, AAC, APE, WMA, And DSD audio files
  • plays high-resolution digital music files (PCM files up to 32-bit/384kHz; DSD files up to 11.2MHz)
  • rendering for MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) audio files
  • USB input allows for use as an external digital-to-analog converter (DAC) with a computer
  • microSD card slot accepts,microSD, microSDHC, or microSDXC cards (available separately)
  • 64GB internal flash memory, with up to 128GB additional storage (up to 192GB total memory)
  • 3.1" color touchscreen display (800 x 480 pixels)
  • built-in Bluetooth supports Sony's LDAC Hi-fidelity streaming codec
  • Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE HX) restores high-frequency signals to compressed digital formats like MP3 for more natural, expansive sound
  • S-Master® HX amplification offers accurate, detailed playback of high-resolution music files
  • minijack stereo headphone output (3.5mm)
  • 4.4mm balanced headphone output
  • high-speed USB 2.0 port
  • rechargeable battery provides 30 hours of playback
  • USB 2.0-compliant cable included for file transfer and battery charging
  • milled aluminum frame
  • 2-1/8"W x 4-11/16"H x 5/8"D
  • weight: 5.54 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year parts, 90 days labor
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Digital music player (silver)
  • 42" USB cable (Type A USB on one end and proprietary connector on other end)
  • Instruction Manual
  • Startup Guide
  • Note on matte glass
  • Listening for a Lifetime
  • Warranty sheet (US + Canada)

Music sounds great thru this device. It's a nice portable music player for those on the go, that want to hear music at its finest. On the bad side, it takes some research to figure out more than just playing some songs. The blu tooth sync is forgetful in my vehicle too.

Tyrone, El Paso, TX

Reviews

Sony NW-ZX300 Walkman® Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(3 Reviews)

Great sounds

Tyrone from El Paso, TX on 4/20/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Music sounds great thru this device. It's a nice portable music player for those on the go, that want to hear music at its finest. On the bad side, it takes some research to figure out more than just playing some songs. The blu tooth sync is forgetful in my vehicle too.

Pros: Sound clarity.

Cons: Blu tooth vehicle snyc.

Exceptional sound reproduction with balanced tones!

Josh from Colorado Springs, CO on 4/11/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Must properly break in! I was hesitant to purchase this for as many negative reviews I'd seen over its lack of "punch", bass, dynamic sound, and more. Upon using it the first time my impressions were the same. I was prepared to return it. However, there is a "Guide to High Quality Sound" in the device settings which clearly detail the requirement for proper break-in. The tutorial explains that this device uses new, proprietary polymer capacitors, which must be broken in. It says, "The electrical characteristics of these capacitors become stable after about 200 hours of use, reaching the point where they produce the highest quality sound." Furthermore, this a requirement is for each headphone port in that there are different capacitors for both. For the capacitors to break in, headphones must be plugged in and powered at normal volume for the process to be achieved. I took the bait... I purposed to not make any decisions to return until the chronometer on my Walkman achieved 200 hours of playback time. Knowing I had a return window to work within, I simply plugged in headphones each night, and set the Walkman to "Play" overnight until after a few weeks I'd achieved the coveted 200 hour mark. The difference was night and day! I'm willing to bet most early reviewers did not allow for proper break-in and made rash judgments based on non-optimal functioning of the non-broken-in capacitors. I'm thoroughly enjoying it in the car, for air t

Pros: - warm, dynamic tones - plays virtually every known digital format - great battery life - comprehensive user and listening features - broad range for usage

Cons: - break-in period required, and is an absolute must in order to experience full potential - User interface is a bit antiquated (think decade-old iPod UI) - touchscreen not opertional for powering on/off the device, nor waking screen fro sleep during usage. In order to toggle the screen on and off you must depress the Power button on the side of the device. Not a major problem - merely an inconvenience and not consistent with other modern smart devices.

Very good DAP

Graeme from Las Vegas, NV on 3/25/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Solid product. Nicely designed. I wanted something that would be comfortable in my gym shorts and this fits the bill with nicely rounded corners and not too heavy. File transfer is very straightforward (drag and drop). Sound is clean and accurate on my 16 bit files transferred from CD's however I was hoping for more separation. But amazing sound from purchased 24 bit files. No discernible hiss. Will definitely benefit from being paired with the correct IEM's.

Pros: 24 bit files sound amazing

Cons: Re-building a music library with HD files can get expensive!

Details

Hands-on research

Product Research

Features

Overview: The Sony NW-ZX300 is a Hi-Res Walkman digital music player, capable of playing high-resolution audio files. It also has Bluetooth Audio Streaming with NFC technology. The unit features a 3.1" LCD screen, and an internal 64 GB flash memory. You can add even more memory by inserting a microSD.

Supported Audio Formats: The NW-ZX300 Hi-Res Walkman can support multiple digital audio formats:

MP3 32-320 kbps (incl. VBR) at 32, 44.1, and 48 kHz
WMA 32-192 kbps (incl. VBR) at 44.1 kHz
FLAC 16, 24-bit at 8 to 384 kHz
WAV 16, 24, 32-bit at 8 to 384 kHz
AAC 6-320 kbps at 8 to 48 kHz
HE-AAC 32-144 kbps at 8 to 48 kHz
Apple Lossless 16, 24-bit at 8 to 384 kHz
AIFF 16, 24, 32-bit at 8 to 192 kHz
DSD 1 bit at 2.8224, 5.6558, and 11.2896 MHz
APE 8, 16, 24-bit at 8 to 192 kHz (Fast, Normal, High)
MQA Supported

Build Quality: The NW-ZX300 features supreme build quality with a 3.1" TFT WVGA color display (800 x 480 pixels) with white LED backlighting. It has a capacitive touch screen made of matte glass to allow smooth fingertip control with fewer fingerprints. The device is constructed with a rigid aluminum milled frame to keep the circuit boards secure, preventing noise and distortion. The circuits and components are attached to the circuit board with a Sony-developed high-quality, lead-free solder for a purer signal path. The S-Master HX digital amplifier is optimized for high-resolution audio playback, delivering smooth, natural sound over a wide 20Hz-40kHz frequency range.

DSEE-HX: Sony has included their DSEE-HX "up-scaling" technology in the NW-ZX300. DSEE-HX uses an algorithm to analyze the music, and automatically replace the "lost" information. DSEE-HX (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) gives your highly-compressed music files new life so they sound almost as good as true Hi-Res Audio quality.

Memory: The NW-ZX300 has a 64 GB internal memory, which has the capacity for the following number of recordable songs:

  • MP3 (128 kbps): 15,000 songs
  • AAC (256 kbps): 7,600 songs
  • FLAC:
    • 44.1 kHz/16-bit: 1,300 songs
    • 96 kHz/24-bit: 420 songs
    • 192 kHz/24-bit: 210 songs
  • DSD:
    • 2.8224 MHz/1-bit: 340 songs
    • 5.6448 MHz/1-bit: 170 songs
    • 11.2896 MHz/1-bit: 80 songs
Note: The unit's memory card slot will also accept microSD cards for even more memory capacity.

Bluetooth/NFC: With built-in Bluetooth 4.2, you can stream your music files wirelessly from compatible devices up to 30 feet away. Devices that have the NFC (Near-Field Communication) function, can be automatically turned on, and paired with the Walkman, by simply touching the back of the Walkman to the device on the NFC logo.

Sound Quality Settings: You can adjust the sound quality with the following selectable functions: Equalizer/Tone Control, DSEE HX, DC Phase Linearizer, and Dynamic Normalizer. You can save up to 3 sound settings for later recall.

Rechargeable Battery: The Walkman has a built-in Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery for exceptional stamina. After a 5.5-hour full recharging time (via USB connection), the unit's estimated battery life is as follows:

  Stereo 3.5mm Jack Balanced 4.4mm Jack
MP3 128 kbps 30 hours 25 hours
AAC 256 kbps 27 hours 23 hours
FLAC 96kHz/24-bit 26 hours 23 hours
FLAC 192kHz/24-bit 23 hours 23 hours
DSD 2.8224 MHz/1-bit 19 hours 13 hours
DSD 5.6448 MHz/1-bit 15 hours 12 hours
DSD 11.2896 MHz/1-bit 13 hours 10 hours
MP3 (128k) w/Bluetooth 25 hours
(SBC connection)
FLAC (96kHz/24-bit) w/Bluetooth 14 hours
(LCAC connection)

Connections/System Requirements: On the top of the unit are two headphone outputs: a 3.5mm stereo mini headphone output and a 4.4mm balanced standard headphone output. A 22-pin WM-PORT for connecting the unit to a computer using the supplied USB cable. The NW-ZX300 is compatible with computers with the following operating systems: Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, and macOS v10.8-10.12. You can also use the WM-PORT to connect the unit to one of Sony's Headphone DAC/Amplifiers, such as the PHA-1 or PHA-3 (special cable supplied with the headphone amplifier).

Specifications:

Frequency Response: 20 Hz to 40 kHz (Stereo 3.5mm Mini-jack and Balanced Standard 4.4mm jack)

Audio Power Output:

  • Balanced Standard Jack (4.4mm): 200mW + 200mW (High Gain)
  • Stereo Mini Jack (3.5mm): 50mW + 50mW (high gain)

Dimensions: Width 2.261", Height 4.724", Depth 0.596"

Weight: 5.5 ounces

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Best for the money. [ CHARLES  May 22, 2018 ]
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