Pros Very affordable, great quality for what you get
Cons Screen res, One size fits all?
Summary First, last I checked it was the good old QVGA resolution, not 480x272 as the main review suggests (although I would be happy with the latter) Though the screen should be the same great 16 million colors as always. It's a great price point competing with the Clix, but Archos needs something in the low-end Harddrive market like the preceding 404 was in. Hopefully there's a 505 planned to fill the gap.
Pros * Plays video reasonably well, as long as it's not very high bitrate
Cons * Awful, clunky user interface
* Applies DRM to videos that you make using the DVR Travel Adapter
* Crashes fairly often
* Doesn't play video with very high bitrates
Summary If you want a difficult-to-use player, which requires you to buy additional codecs to view DivX/XVid/h264 encoded videos, then by all means buy this. If you want to use it to record from an external camera, forget about it. IT WILL APPLY DRM TO YOUR HOME-MADE VIDEOS.
If you use the "DVR Travel Adapter" to record video from, say, a helmet camera, it will randomly decide that it's a Macrvision-protected stream and you won't be able to export it to your computer. Archos does not respond to any inquires into this. In fact, they've never answered any question I've asked, unless it leads directly to me buying something else from them.
Pros I purchased @ Archos' refurb for $25 but not w/o researching on WEB first. 405 provides excellent video & audio playback for a sub $100 product. I've had no difficulty viewing photos/videos and listening to music. It works well w/ my 16gb SD card.
Cons You cannot create playlists w/songs on the SD card - known issue from WEB research - (KI). Archos' customer service is non-existent (KI). User manual has limited usefulness (KI). It appears that Archos no longer supports TV guide (DVR station) (KI)
Summary Do not buy the Archos 405 if you are uncomfortable using the WEB to determine how to fully use it. As mentioned above customer service is spotty at best and the user manual does not provide much help. There are sites on the WEB that will answer most questions not covered by the user manual. Again before purchasing the 405 make sure that you are aware of the known issues (KI). This product is not new so do your research. Finally I suggest keeping your purchase price to a minimum. In addition to the 405, you will need to purchase an SD card to supplement the internal memory and possibly the DVR station if you plan to record from TV (again the TV guide does not work). The bottom line is I am very pleased with the audio and video capabilities of this product given the above caveats.
Pros Holds music well.
Cons Cumbersome to move around main screen. Downloading TV guide not intuitive. Setting up record TV guide not simple. Locks up constantly - have to reset almost every time I turn it on. Ruins SanDisks - can't read them. Customer support is horrible.
Summary I bought my first 405 in 2008. Had problems with it locking up and finally, just had had it with its inoperablility. Got through to customer support - took one month to complete the exchange for a new one. Questionable whether or not this one is "new" or not - same problems are reoccurring. Screen locks up consistently. I know I am not moving to fast with the buttons becuase the buttons are no intuitive or user -friendly. Next issue was downloading a movie player plug-n. Went to download and the link was broken. Tried it again, refreshing everything, then it said, "This code has already been used." Called customer service. Was on hold for 30 minutes before I gave up. Emailed and asked that they just cancel my order. Response was "Call us and we will give you a new code.' Called back and not surprisingly, a recorded message came on and said, "We are experience an unusually large amount of calls." No. Really? I am shocked! So I emailed them back and am cancelling the order. I am done trying to fix this thing to make it play movies. I have ripped some DVDs only to find out the 405 won't play them. So I am stuck with recorded television from my docking station which is too questionable at best with the "unsynchronized" TV Guide that I have to update constantly from my computer. This model and ARCHOS inc. in general, needs a customer service consultant. It isn't any wonder they don't have a knowledge base page or a customer forum. They would be out of business - today.
Pros The screen is glare free.
Cons The only good thing about this devise is the screen. The screen is glare free. It pulled me in, but with the accessories I bought to try to make it better, I was thowing good money after bad.
Summary Don't believe this review. I'm looking for some sort of lemon law that can help cover my costs or to get some sort of remedy. Awful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!