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Sony NW-A36 Reviews from MusicPhotoLife and TechGoondu

These might be the first or at least one of the first reviews I have seen of the new A30.  There are 2 reviews, the first from TechGoondu and the second from MusicPhotoLife.  Both are from Singapore meaning the device should go on sale shortly there, November from what I can see. The MusicPhotoLife review is the longer and more detailed one and probably the better of the two.  The author mentionss upgrading from the A10/A20 might not be worth the money.  Of course this is subjective but from the differences between the A10/20 and A30. I may pull the trigger if it goes on sale here.

  • touch screen operation 
  • supports concurrent internal storage and micro SD storage access when plugged in to computer
  • supports DSD file format, which is converted to PCM for playback
  • 35mW power per channel means it can drive more demanding headphones
  • able to operate music using the hardware buttons without turning on the display
  • able to delete songs and folders
  • able to manage M3U playlist (up to 999 tracks)
  • music auto pauses when headphones is removed from the audio port
  • dedicated Language Study screen

The most exciting differences are the 35mW power per channel, the ability to delete songs from the player directly and auto pause when the headphnes are removed.  Oddly enough I have used M3U files on my A15. Of course there are some features lacking from the A30:

  • does not play video files
  • does not open photo files, and no option to select wallpaper
  • does not have option to transmit sound effect over Bluetooth
  • does not support aptX audio codec
  • songs cannot be analysed for SensMe channels on the A30 unit. It requires the songs to be analysed using Media Go software
  • slightly shorter battery life, ranging from 22 hours (DSD + noise cancellation) to 45 hours (MP3)
  • no auto power-off feature
  • existing music files cannot enable dance/karaoke/language mode

The lack of power-off feature is a shame, it would have been good to see an option to set power off to 15s, 30s and 1 min or whatever.  Removing aptX support is not a suprise, since the codec is owned by Qualcomm and including would have meant Sony would need to pay a license fee for its use.  The same probably applies to video codecs, excluding their support probably removes any licensing fees and I feel a majority of people did not use the video option.  Finally removing photo support is unfortunate, especially no wallpaper support.  Perhaps photos and wallpapers will be updated in a future firmware update.  Links to the reviews below.


  1. Hi admin, do you have any information or feeling whatsoever, that Sony will release a successor/ replacement to the (now very obsolete in terms of UI) ZX100? I'm trying to get as much out of my dying Walkman A-845 before I have to choose this A30. But I hope by then there will be a new ZX-100

    1. nw-zx300 is the successor model

      however, i own a nw-zx100 and the ui is fine and responsive enough, at the end of the day, the UI is ideal and i don't care about UI aesthetics


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