D-Link has built on its DMP series of MP3 players with a new model featuring LCD display, digital quality playback, equalizer and (Universal Serial Bus) USB interface. The unit's real claim to fame is that it provides 12 Mbps of bandwidth for music file transfers.
The DMP-210 Roq-it MP3 player, priced at US$99, comes with D-Link MP3 Manager software that allows file transfers to and from Windows-based PCs. Users can also download music from the Internet, listen to streaming music, encode from audio CDs and organize music libraries, according to D-Link.
D-Link product manager Travis Whitney told TechExtreme that the DMP-210 is the result of the company's effort to meet market demand with ease of use and low price. He said usability and the player's 10 hours of play from a single AA battery -- more than double the three to four hours of previous models -- are the biggest improvements in the Roq-it.
USB Utility and Speed
D-Link says the DMP-210, usable out of the box with included battery, earphones, software, drivers and USB cable, delivers digital quality stereo playback, but the USB interface is among its more impressive features.
The company credits the integrated USB interface, which replaces a parallel port feature in previous D-Link and other MP3 players on the market, for "lightning quick" music file transfers at 12 Mbps of bandwidth.
D-Link's Whitney said he was able to download the player's full 32MB of music "in a couple of minutes;" previously, it took up to a half-hour via parallel port.
The DMP-210 comes with 32MB of on-board flash memory, providing a maximum of one hour of digital music and other MP3 recordings. The player includes an expandable SmartMedia memory card that provides 128MB of additional memory.
Whitney told TechExtreme that with the added memory the player could deliver about two-and-a-half hours of playing time.
Full Featured for a C-Note
Music enthusiasts may be disappointed not to have a CD player, but the MP3-focused Roq-it does offer the essential MP3 features as well as some new ones.
The company says the LCD display -- with playtime, track, number, battery status and encoded Kbps information -- and large buttons with hold switch make the player easy to use. The player also employs one of four preset equalizer modes for Normal, Jazz, Rock and Classical music.
A single, standard AA battery powers the small device for up to 10 hours of use -- accomplished by more efficient chips according to Whitney -- and plug-and-play features make the player workable right away.
Irvine, California-based D-Link also takes advantage of a lack of moving parts in the MP3 player, sidelining music skips on the DMP-210.
"There are no moving parts so there's no way that music can be jittered at all," Whitney said.