Connect Player or SonicStage? Not even Sony know…

Sony confuse me.

They appear to have two pieces of music management software competing for the same space. There’s SonicStage, which came with MiniDiscs and the HD series of players. It’s ugly and horrible to use but had the massive advantage of being fairly stable. Then they’ve got the new upstart, Connect Player, which comes with the new A-series Walkmans (Walkmen?). It’s both prettier and easier to use, but until recently was horribly slow and crashed every few seconds. I’ll ignore the third option, which I believe shipped with the PSP.

The thing is, they’ve finally got the Connect Player working as it should. It’s not perfect, but it works properly. Hooray! But now SonicStage is about to trump it again, adding support for the very Walkmans that Connect was designed to work with.

Come on Sony, make your minds up. What’s it to be? Connect Player or SonicStage? It was good to keep SonicStage around while you got Connect Player into a usable state, but surely now you should drop it? If you do keep developing it, it needs a major interface upgrade at the very least. It still looks and feels like some “scene” software from the heyday of the Amiga A500.

Maybe I’ve been spoilt by the likes of iTunes — software that makes it easy to look after thousands of songs — but then so has the rest of the world. I think Sony need to think long and hard, then cull one of these applications and bring the other one up to spec.

Update — It seems that the Connect Player is no more. Let’s hope SonicStage gets an interface upgrade in the next version, because even version 4.0 is miles behind the competition.

23 Responses to “Connect Player or SonicStage? Not even Sony know…”

1. stuge

Connect Vs SonicStage .Sony was never able t clean the dirty nappies of Connect but I hope Sonic Stage CP works out ..

in b/w Nice blog:D

2. Gunther

I don’t know what everyone has against SonicStage…I can find my songs, it looks nice (version 3.4) and it plays things, and I can put them onto my MD player, and import stuff…what more do I want? Oh, and I can put cover art, lyrics etc. really easily and easily search for artists or just look for them because it’s all alphabetical…beats iTunes hands down, imho.
no reflections on the article – just my penny’s worth!

3. Olly

Thanks stuge.

Gunther – The looking nice thing is subjective. IMO it looks dated and awful when compared to any of it’s rivals, and especially the dreaded Connect Player.

The interface seems so restrictive aswell – for instance it appears to be impossible to edit metadata across multiple albums.

4. Flick

Well I just downloaded SonicStage 4 even tho I wasn’t particularly having troubles with the updated Connect. Luckily I only just bought my 1000 so I missed the fun and gmaes you early adopters had :-)

SS 4 is nice. I’m currently copying a CD to test that process, and all seems pretty simple. I deleted Connect since its obsolete once I confirmed that SonicStage worked OK.

The interface is clean and remeiniscent of Connect, however I don’t know what SonicStage looked like before, LOL.

So, my one complaint for the device is that I can’t sync it betwen two PCs. I suppose I have gotten used to being able to do such things with my Palm Pilot and even my Phone/Address book. Why can’t I do it with my music and podcasts? grrr.

Good Blog :-)

Flick (Melbourne Australia)

5. Flick

oops I forgot to mention.. you *can* update stuff like genre across multiple selections…

6. SimonB

Sonic Stage 4? I think I am only on 2. Will head off and download it :)

7. Olly

Flick – I can’t update several albums at once for some reason.

8. Max

Can anyone tell me how to downlaod podcasts onto Sonic Stage? Is it easy? It doesn’t seem it to me!!

9. Olly

It doesn’t do it natively. You’ll need to find another piece of podcast software – there’s some at

Set it to download them into a folder, then set up SonicStage to keep an eye on that folder.

Does that help?

10. tonio

i agree , the sony software is the worst ive come across , an is driving me mad.!

11. Robert Mulroney

I have to say I’m a bit of a fan of Sonic Stage v3.4. I can’t believe that sony hasn’t added podcasting support though. What’s the deal?

12. Robert Mulroney

I’ve found a site to download SS v4 for anyone who’s interested:

13. Freddie

AAArrrrgh, I know I know everyones bitching about sonic stage and connect player, but with all reason; this software SUCKS. It stalls all activity on my computer, and yes I’ve re-installed again and again. It puts combilation albums in 100 different folders, its impossible to get a clue of what your working with. Christ, I wish I bought another player, I’ve always used Sony gear, but this time…. AAAARRRRGGHHHHHHH

14. richard

like the player,software more than sucks.guess i will use player for fm listening only.and buy an ipod that has decent software.good job sony!!!!!!!

15. Don Lapre is a Superstar

It is a good thing that Sony finally decided one as you urged on this post. Thy decided correctly. SonicStage in my opinion is the best choice here. I want to thank Robert Mulroney for download link as well.

16. Stacy

This is an interesting article. I hated Connect Player, it would freeze constantly and I thought it stupid having to update it as soon as it was installed, just shows how rubbish the software was to begin with. So I used my sisters SonicStage and I loved it, except it mucked up my songs for some reason and a lot of them went under the “etc” index instead of A-Z. I still can’t fix that, grrr.

I never knew they’d working on the Connect software. Interesting.

17. cjsfpa

I have a Sony hi-MD I purchased in Amsterdam about 5 years ago – one of the earlier ones. I use it in Canada mainly. I want to download Sonic Stage for it, but the link above goes to a page with a warning “It may not function properly with products purchased from or used in other countries.” There is also a European Sonic Stage download based in UK. What is the incompatibility? Is it more important where the recorder came from or where the computer is?

18. Olly

I think it’s to do with the connect store module. You could try here?

19. not well pleased

Same old Sony..I must admit I’ve always liked SONY, 2 Bravia tv, video cams, etc.But now I’m more inclined towards other ‘better’ brands which are more consumer friendly as regards computer software. After my last struggle with sonic stage, I simply ‘dumped’ the mp3 player and purchased an ipod…the best thing I ever did.
Now I will replace existing SONY products with easier to use and less annoying customer unfriendly items.
You can tell i’m pretty ****** off withe them..can’t you.
SONY…your loss!

20. Hugo

Connect Player or SonicStage? None!
Shame on Sony for having sutch a bad applications for a simple thing…

Try voidMP3FM…

21. Olly

Thanks Hugo — It’s for those following along at home. From their FAQ:

Does the program work with HD-based walkman?
No. It works only with Sony NW-E002,NW-E003,NW-E005,NW-A608.

22. ann

i agree with everyone who has tried and tried over and over to make it work well , it just will not and i have wanted to take a hammer to the ****** NIGHTMARE TO USE EVEN WITH ALL THE UPDATES after seing how fast and easy my daughter ipods and samsung mp3s are to use i have decided to bin my 20g NW-A3000 AND I AM SO SAD AT HAVING TO BECAUSE I JUST LOVE THE LOOK OF IT

23. Jane

The new sonic stage is sooo confusing.!!! i have an old bean walkman and the ssongs will not go on my mp3player!