|Thin, but Tough ¨C a Review on Meizu M3
I am one of the lucky ones who have been ¡°necking¡± with this attractively slim music player for weeks while many others can still only ogle and drool at this latest head-turner from Meizu. Feeling a bit of guilty for not sharing the player with you all, I think the least I can do is to share some of the experience this thin but charming player has brought me.
| The Meizu M3, or as what they dub it, the Music Card, is indeed slim. Not exactly a card that plays music, M3 is thin enough to make your eyes pop out. As usual, long before I have my hands on the real Music Card, I had been shown a dozen well-taken and well-photoshopped pictures of this new target of fans. I wasn¡¯t much impressed, though, by its prototype photos. It looked a bit too long and narrow, and wasn¡¯t much of a device that I would be looking forward to. Now that I have had it for weeks, what I can claim is those photos hardly do justice to the real charm of this new model from Meizu. The experience can¡¯t be more similar compared with that brought by the manufacturer¡¯s previous music player, M6, or as is dubbed Miniplayer.
Designed to be a dedicated music player, M3 doesn¡¯t highlight its capability of playing video clips, though it really is, and has a display that is much smaller than that of its cousin. It¡¯s revealed that the screen on M3 is exactly thesame model they find on iPod nano, the player that is said to be Meizu¡¯s arch rival ¨C well, at least in mainland China¡¯s market. Despite the screen¡¯s noble lineage, I like M6¡¯s a lot better. Not only is it about the screen size and resolution, but lots more about the performance. We have good news, though. The information on M3¡¯s display is well legible ¨C under all ambient light circumstances, including in sunlight. And it has wide visual angles.
The building quality is just as good as that of Miniplayer. No misalignments. Just smooth and flat as any. The player comes with a layer of protective skin on the black front board. A bit unexpectedly, the skin isn¡¯t found on the backboard, which is made of medal. The backboard is so smooth and bright that it can be used as a miniature mirror. Not when after being held in the hand for a while, though, because it catches and keeps fingerprints easily.
For a thin music player like this is, music fans can celebrate a bit that it still sports a standard 3.5 mm earphone socket and a standard mini-USB port. There in between is a minimum microphone, which implies the capability of voice recording. The adoption of universal sockets and ports brings a wealth of benefits for all users and I think we can be thankful for that.
|The clich¨¦ applies here ¨C no matter how aesthetically charming it looks, for a music player what counts most is what musical experience it can offer to the listener. Having been devoted to varied music players for more than fifteen years, and having learned classical guitar playing for years, I never claim to be a die-hard audiophile. In my view, being an audiophile can be a torture; that means you are forever burning your sweet money, only to try to spot the flaws in the pricy equipment afterward and you can never be satisfied. That can be an experience of great enjoyment and fun, however, when the target of your attention is the music itself. Ok, enough digressions. Music Card is a player that is well worthy of your expectations when it comes to music performance. I was never good a
t such hi-fi literature, things like how deep the base goes and how dense and contagious the intermediate frequency is, and how crisp and penetrating the treble is, and all I can say is Music Card does a better job than I had expected before its arrival, compared to its nicely slim figure.
But let me try a few lines anyway. We have nearly the same music style, and the same wide sound stage as M6¡¯s, but a better signal/noise ratio, though the given figure is even poorer. In this case you can easily find confirmation by going to other reviews online. It also sees the boosting system of base and treble as that on M6¡¯s, and a couple of Sound Effect systems as well as user¡¯s EQ function. With the given decent earphone PT850 that I believe isn¡¯t any poorer than that much-ballyhooed MX500 from Sennheiser, and with a battery lifespan of more than 20 hours and a capacity of 4GB that can load a storehouse of music tracks,this music gadget from Meizu is qualified to cater to any demands on any styles of music.
The FM on Miniplayer is probably the part that hears most of the criticisms, and it can even be said that the tuner they give to M6 eclipses the brightness of this brilliant player, especially for those who are in the habit of enjoying a little radio at night. I am no FM fan, but I am pleased to inform you that the tuner on M3 does a far better job than its predecessor. They are ¡°poles apart¡± if I am allowed to exaggerate a bit. M3 searches channels fast and accurately, and signals stay stable and steady during my brief tests.
Though this Apple style of file management and navigation has made great inroads into conventional controls and has become the market mainstream, I stubbornly maintain that the old 5-way button way of operating is far more convenient and user-friendly. Obviously, and unfortunately, very few seem to agree with me, and M3 has the same navigation system as that on M6. Still, I think we should thank our lucky star that M3 doesn¡¯t force us to go struggling for the iTunes mode that Apple sports and still support the old Portable Mass Storage mode.
I had a small test and for writing into the device a single movie file, the average speed was as fast as 7.16 MB per second, much faster than most of the USB keys on the market. It took 96 seconds to upload the same singular 537MB, average 5.6MB per second. For non-singular mp3 files, the writing speed result was 4.875MB per second. That¡¯s impressive for a flash device that is made to play music,I¡¯d have to say.
As a mainstream MP3 player with a colored screen, of course M3 also supports lyrics display, text reading, voice recording. And you can view a bit of pictures and video clips, too, if you enjoy doing them on such a tiny screen. Not interested in torturing my vision, whatsoever, I¡¯ll just skip this part.
The designer and manufacturer of Music Card, Meizu China, may not be the most prolific one on the portable music players market ¨C it always takes longer than expected to launch a new model ¨C it certainly is one of the most dedicated, and most promising, one in the world. Hope it will continue to surprise its supporters and the industry with more cutting-edge devices.
Some more Music Card pictures:
2G--550RMB about $68.75
4G--650RMB about $81.25