Dear Sony…

I bought myself a Sony Walkman A3000 shortly before christmas.

It’s a really good bit of hardware: The sound quality is great (especially with a decent set of earphones), looks lovely, is nice to use, line-out mode is handy for plugging it into the stereo, I could go on.

Alas Sony have largely ruined it. How? Well, they’ve gone and bundled it with the wonderful new Connect Player v1.0.

Now, to look at it’s quite nice. All dark colours and smooth edges – very Sony. Alas to use it is a complete nightmare.

Connect Player falling over. Again.

It uses up shedloads of memory and CPU time (how does 674mb and 97% sound?). It takes upwards of five minutes to start up. Despite using all that memory and CPU time it’s slower than a snail climbing Everest. On top of all this it’s not even stable: It usually crashes when you try to import a lot of music at once. Nope, I wouldn’t reccomend that anybody even tries to use it.

Instead, march straight over to the Sony Website, grab a copy of SonicStage 3.3 and use that instead. In terms of looks it’s the complete antithesis of Connect – being an ugly thing. On the other hand, it’s loads faster, a lot more stable, uses less memory and will quite happily transfer music over to your new player.

Alas this means you’ll lose some of the extra functions of the Walkman (the Artist Link and some of the intelligent shuffle features), but to be honest I don’t think you’ll miss them. The joy of being able to finally put music onto the new player without tearing out your hair ought to more than make up for it.


Thankfully, it looks like they’re making steps in the right direction. ATRACLife reports that they’re taking a leaf right out of Apple’s book (quite literally) by poaching Tim Schaaff and making him Senior Vice President of Software Development. Still, that doesn’t help those of us using the software right now…

8 Responses to “Dear Sony…”

1. SimonB

Oops, that sounds rubbish! People have been slagging SonicStage off for ages but like I said a while back it works perfectly acceptably :)

2. Olly

They’ve been slagging SS off because it *is* rubbish. Compare it to Connect though and it suddenly looks like a masterpiece of software engineering :)

3. Owen

Is crappy software enough to put me off buying a product like this? Yes

Could I afford one anyway? No

Good work Sony. If had some money, you wouldn’t be getting it

4. Simon

Have you unlocked the EU sound limiter yet? If not do so as it makes a huge diference.

I never have had any issues with sonicstage, I use it for a few mins to transfer an album, it does that fine. I’m guessing people must be stupid enough to use it for copying CD tracks to the PC, fools.

5. Olly

Yeah, unlocking that was one of the first things I did :) The only probs I’ve had with SonicStage are it falling over if I tried to import my entire library at once.

Connect also falls over when I try to do that. It does it when I try to only do a few artists at a time. Quite often breaks down when I import just one album at a time, too. Even when I’ve got all the music in there it’s so slow as to be unusable.

What’s more, Sony won’t offer me tech support because *I* installed Windows XP, not some braindead monkey at PC World. Bah.

Hopefully a Sony plug-in for something else will turn up sooner or later. Dammit, even RealPlayer is nicer to use.

6. Simon

Keep an eye on ATRAClife mate, they will let you know when/if Sony get things sorted. Can’t believe how stupid they are, cause the players are really nice. I’m swaying towards the Creative Zen Vision M though at the moment.

My next tip would be to hunt for a RM-MC35ELK remote for it on ebay. Would be ideal for when you are biking about. I trust you already have some better headphones so I wont point out that obvious change.

7. Silver one

Bloody hell SonY what you playing at, it took me 3 hours to build a library of 1700+ song it takes about 30mins to load every time I try and use it. My machine is a P4 3.2 Dual core with 2gigs of ram and loads on spare disk space, so what going on….to do the same with Media Player and Music match takes about 10min to add the same list of song and load fine….

8. Yaroukh

ConnectPlayer su**s as well. I won’t never ever buy mp3-player from Sony. HW itself is OK, sound is perfect, but the SW is huge pain in the you-know-where and ruins everything for me.
I swap two songs among two playlists and it takes like 10min for CP to synchronize this little action within the player. It spends couple of seconds (saying “transferring”) FOR EACH AND EVERY SONG within the playlist – WHY FOR GOD’S SAKE when I do not transferr any songs you piece of crap!?
I hate the “synchronize” concept at all and I hate you Sony, once again, me+sony=neveragain, I swear.