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Sony Walkman NW-A105
Sony Walkman NW-A105

Sony Walkman: A near perfect product for audio enthusiasts

  • Unlike older Walkmans, the NW-A105 is the first to run on Android
  • It doesn’t have a SIM though, so you will need a hotspot or Wi-Fi

In the streaming age, it’s really tough to argue for a device that’s meant solely for playing music, but if there’s one device that could make a case for itself, the Sony Walkman NW-A105 would be it. There are caveats of course, the biggest being that you have to be an audiophile to really care about a product that costs nearly 25,000 and won’t replace your phone fully.

However, unlike older Walkmans, the NW-A105 is the first to run on Android. With Android 9, it gets support for regular apps, including music streaming applications, email, social media and more. It doesn’t have a SIM though, so you will need a hotspot or Wi-Fi connections when on the go.

However, the app support definitely increases the utility here. If you just want to browse the web while listening to high quality music, without texts and calls disturbing you, this is perhaps the only device that allows that.

Speaking of high quality music, the NW-A105 makes little compromise there. It’s not meant for low-end headphones, but suffice to say that this Walkman can make even a pair of affordable headphones feel considerably above its routine level. It can upscale audio, over both wired and wireless connections, which makes a huge difference. Even streamed music will sound better than it would on just another smartphone. It’s excellent.

In products targeted at audiophiles, the differences are usually apparent only to those whose ears are tuned finely. Not for the Walkman -- you can hear a very audible difference against your smartphone, and we tested against quite a few, ranging from affordable phones to the iPhone 11 Pro Max.

The question really is whether the difference is worth spending money over and above your smartphone. If your answer to that question is yes then buy this.

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