"one of the best gadgets, but has some minor flaws"4.5 starson by bentzi.axl
Pros: touch screen, Wi-Fi, replaceable battery, tv recording
Cons: slow pdf rendering, low battery for Wi-Fi, internet a little slow
Summary: I'm giving this product 9.5/10
I bought the 604wifi + dvr dock in one package,
and I paid around 470 for it.
which I believe is a very reasonable price.
the screen is amazing. very sharp and crisp, and very large, making watching videos very pleasant. I've seen a lot of comments that the touch screen reduces the quality, but from personal experience it's not true. The touch screen makes its easy to navigate, and you almost don't need to use the keys on the side. the touch screen is very responsive, and archos recommends that you use the stylus or your finger. the screen isn't a magnet for fingerprints and is intended to be used with your fingers. I give the screen 10/10
the videos look really good on the screen, again it's easy to fast forward or rewind, using the keys (10/30 second intervals) or using the touch screen to control how far you want to fast forward/rewind. very intuitive and easy. sometime, the player gets "stuck" for a second, while it reads from memory.
It supports almost all of the major codecs, and it played almost all of the movies that i have on my computer. however, if you want to play vob or Ac3 encoded videos, you need to buy the plugin ($20), and there's another plugin for .mov and support.
I personally didn't buy this player to listen to music,(i have a ipod nano) so there's not much I can say here. overall, the quality is not much different than my nano. when playing music you see the album art (if the mp3 comes with one) and it looks great. overall 9/10
wifi: the best feature after the touch screen. Since I already have a home network, It was easy to set up, reception is excellent. My router is in the basement and the signal was very strong on the 2nd floor. but I guess it depends on the router. you can easily share files, transfer them to and from the 604, and even stream video and music from the computer. very nice feature, and very useful at home. If you hook it up to the tv, you can "stream" videos from your computer to the TV. overall 10/10
tv recording: if you have the dvr station or the travel adapter, you can record from your tv. there are a lot of settings and options that you can change, from quality to saturation, to volume. Using the default settings, the quality is really good. It's very easy to set up, and use the scheduler to record when you are not home. if you have the
dvr station, it has an IR emmiter that can change the channels, and turn on/off (I have a cable box, so this is usefull), but I haven't tried that yet. overall 9.5/10
battery life: If you charge from usb, it'll take some time, but I only charge using the dvr dock, and it's very fast.
playing videos from the hard drive, the battery lasted 5 1/2 hours
streaming videos over the networks: 2 hours
using the internet: 4 hours.
I didn't try audio, but I assume it's 10+
since the battery is replaceable, you can theoretically double these numbers or triple them. overall, the battery life is decent but not amazing. 7/10
Internet: a very nice feature, most websites load up in a reasonable time and it looks good. However because it's not a 19" screen, there a lot of scrolling that need to be done. There are two rendering modes: desktop or smart. In desktop, it loads up the websites as if you are surfing from a regular pc, so you need to scroll sideways too. in smart mode, it fits the website to the screen. No flash support, so there's no youtube or google videos. basic java support,
so there's no web messengers that you can use. Websites that are designed for mobile use look really good. you can scroll down and to the sides using the touch screen, but if you hit a link on the way by mistake, it would load it up, so i use the keys instead. One thing that was really anoying, is that, if you download a file, you have to quit the web application before you can view the file.
watch the reaction when you watch a video on this thing in public and you'll know what I mean. people will stare, people will say wow that's cool!!, and some will ask where you got it and will buy it themselves.
for a 4"+ screen, the package is very small and attractive. It's fits in you pocket, but you wouldn't o running with it. a sturdy fake leather case comes in the box, and it protects it when in your pocket or bag.
processor: I was disappointed to read the cnet review, when they wrote that the processor is sluggish. If you update to latest firmware, it removes some of the problem, and it's not that slow. while playing video it takes some time to load, but on par with other video players out there. It takes like 10 sec to load up.
that's my review
I'm very pleased with this product. Archos has proven themselves to be the champions in portable entertainment, with this first wifi enabled, touch screen pvr