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If we imagine an evolutionary chart of music players, we might see a phonograph at the beginning followed by a record player, cassette player, CD player and an MP3 player. In the end, to what does all this technological evolution lead? We don’t know what the future holds for music, but for now, the MP4 player is one electronic gadget that is topping the evolution charts. An MP4 player is essentially an MP3 player with the capacity to play movies. If you’re a music and movie lover, you no longer have to choose a device that only plays one or the other.

In our search for an MP4 player that lets you have it all, we discovered the COWON X7. With unparalleled sound quality and a screen built for movie watching, the X7 has earned its recognition as the TopTenREVIEWS Gold Award winner. Even though this device was designed to create the optimum hand-held movie-watching experience, it also acts as a music player, picture viewer, eBook reader and even an external hard drive. With all these capabilities, the COWON X7 conveniently combines several electronic gadgets into one, allowing you to more easily carry and view your digital media. Read on to see what else the COWON X7 MP4 player can do for you.

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Appearance & Storage Capacity
Compare
10/10
COWON X7
iPod Touch
COWON J3
Zune 120
Archos 43
ZEN X-FI2
ZEN Touch 2
Coby MP837
Sansa Fuze+
10
9.4
9.3
9.2
8.1
7.5
6.4
6.3
5.3

The COWON X7 has a large screen for an MP4 player. While the average MP4 player has a 3-inch screen (measured diagonally), this COWON MP4 player’s touchscreen is 4.3 inches wide. The large screen on this device enhances the experience of watching movies, allowing you to see more detail without straining your eyes. Because we know that people who are serious about movies prefer a larger screen created specifically for watching movies, the COWON’s 4.3 inch screen is one feature that helped it become number one on our list of the best MP4 players.

Although we loved the COWON X7 for its big screen, we also realize that as the size of an MP4 player's screen increases, the size of the device inevitably increases as well. The height of the video player is not much different than other players, but the width is considerably larger – up to one inch larger. The COWON X7 weighs 0.46 pounds. Despite its slightly larger and heavier design, we feel that it is still compact enough to fit in a purse, pocket or side bag, which is good because we know you will want to take this MP4 player with you wherever you go.

You can choose between a 120GB or a 160GB model. Both of these storage capacities will give you plenty of space to store movies, music, pictures and more. A low-quality movie can take up to 1GB of storage space, while a high-quality movie can take up between 2GB and 4GB. Most MP4 players only have 4GB or 8GB of storage, giving you only enough storage capacity to hold one or two movies. With the COWON X7, you won’t run into that problem. This MP4 player has enough drive space to compete with external hard drives. In fact, COWON partly showcases this product as an external hard drive, explaining that if you don’t want to buy a device that solely stores files, you may want to buy the X7 because it stores files while also doing much more.

Another important part of an MP4 player’s appearance is its screen resolution. The COWON X7 has a resolution of 480 by 272 pixels. Although some MP4 players have higher-resolution screens, we found that 480 by 272 is the average screen resolution for a three- to four-inch screen.

The COWON X7 has an impressive battery that allows you to continuously play songs and videos for a lengthy amount of time. The audio playback can last up to 103 hours, which is unparalleled since the average MP4 player has a battery that lasts only a third of that time. You can continuously watch videos for up to ten hours on this device, placing the COWON X7 among the top contenders for longest video playback time. With such a strong battery, you know you’ll be entertained during your entire flight to Europe, or your entire flight to anywhere in the world, for that matter.

You can make the COWON X7 yours by customizing the user menu. Smart Widget UI technology allows you to rearrange the icons on the MP4 player's menu however you like, so you will never wish that the designers had done their job differently.

Features
Compare
9.4/10
COWON X7
iPod Touch
COWON J3
Zune 120
Archos 43
ZEN X-FI2
ZEN Touch 2
Coby MP837
Sansa Fuze+
9.4
10
9.4
8.1
9.4
8.8
9.4
7.5
6.3

There is a picture of several brightly colored shopping bags on the website for the COWON X7. Each bag has a function written on the side, such as calculator or stopwatch. These shopping bags demonstrate that the X7 is an all-in-one device that combines the features of several devices into one. Why carry around each of these devices separately when you can simplify your life with the COWON X7?

One of the most important features of an MP4 player is its sound quality enhancement. The COWON X7 uses JetEffect 3.0 and BBE+ technology. This technology improves the sound of your favorite songs by restoring the sound quality to its original state before it was compressed into an MP3 or similar file. You will be able to hear more rich details, as though you were present when the music was first played. The X7 provides 3D Surround, giving you surround sound effects as well. Also, there are 39 EQ presets, including Rock, Jazz, Vocal and Reverb Hall. These presets allow you to tweak the sound of the music, enhancing certain sounds or changing the overall sound to make it sound like it was recorded in a different environment. With this audio-enhancement technology, it is clear that the COWON X7 was built for both a superior video experience and unmatched musical quality.

Besides audio enhancement, the COWON X7 has several features that improve its usefulness. This MP4 player comes with a built-in FM Radio that you can use if you get bored with the music stored on your device. There is also a built-in speaker so you can listen without headphones or share your music with friends at picnics or other gatherings. Another way to share the features of your COWON X7 is through the TV-Out function, which allows you to connect your device to a TV.

With the COWON X7, you will always have a way to record your thoughts. This MP4 player has a built-in microphone that you can use to record meetings, lectures or ideas you don’t want to forget. If that's not enough, you can take notes on the COWON X7 by typing on the touchscreen’s keyboard or writing with your finger. This video device also includes a calculator and a stopwatch.

In addition to a movie and music player, the COWON X7 is an eBook reader and picture viewer. If all these features are not enough to keep you entertained, there are also Flash games available on the COWON MP4 player.

Video & Audio File Formats
Compare
10/10
COWON X7
iPod Touch
COWON J3
Zune 120
Archos 43
ZEN X-FI2
ZEN Touch 2
Coby MP837
Sansa Fuze+
10
8.1
9.4
8.8
10
8.8
10
5.8
8.8

With the COWON X7, you can sync many different video and audio formats onto the device without converting the files. This MP4 player is compatible with five video formats and seven audio formats. Some common file types include: AVI, ASF, DivX, MPEG, MP3 and WAV.

It is easy to put movies and music onto your COWON X7 MP4 player. You simply need to connect the X7 to your computer and drag and drop files onto its drive.

Help & Support
Compare
6.9/10
COWON X7
iPod Touch
COWON J3
Zune 120
Archos 43
ZEN X-FI2
ZEN Touch 2
Coby MP837
Sansa Fuze+
6.9
10
6.9
7.5
7.5
8.8
8.8
6.9
8.8

The manufacturer provides support for this MP4 player through a user guide, knowledgebase and telephone support. The X7 ranked low in the help and support section because most other MP4 player manufacturers provide many additional ways to contact their company and obtain support.

COWON X7 Summary:
9.5/10

The COWON X7 is a MP4 player that doesn’t make you choose between movies and music. The large screen and abundant storage capacity clearly show that this device is made for watching movies. On the other hand, the premium audio quality lets you listen to what COWON calls the “ultimate sound experience.”

All the functions of the COWON X7 combine to create one supreme electronic gadget. Because of all its useful features, we predict that you will never want to be caught without this MP4 player once you've had one.

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COWON X7

Top Ten Reviews no longer updates this category and keeps it here for archiving purposes only. It was last updated in September 2011.
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