The Archos 5
and then I was able to mount and write to the Archos 5 again. It also recovered the pictures that had been copied to the device just prior to the crash and gave them a .REC file extension. I deleted them all and started the copy process from scratch.
The long and short of it is that after the more-or-less rock-solid performance I've had with the Cowon D2, the instability of the Archos 5 was a disappointment.
So, is the Archos 5 a good replacement for the Cowon D2? No.
Out of the box, the Archos 5 is slightly more capable than the D2 in terms of video (it can play my ripped DVDs just fine, with some caveats), but it is less capable in terms of audio. Only my MP3 and WAV audio test files played without trouble. This is a serious limitation for a device that bills itself as a media tablet. I also disliked having to purchase both an expensive plugin pack and the mini-dock just to get it up to the level of functionality it should have had right from the start.
That said, am I unhappy with my purchase? Not as much as one might think. True, it is not a replacement for my current favorite portable media player, but it is very useful in its own right, especially as a mobile node for my home media library (the parts that it can play). With any luck, many of the deficiencies will be erased as firmware updates are released.
In the meantime, my trusty D2 remains my hands-down favorite audio player.
Daniel Bartholomew lives with his wife and children in North Carolina. His occasionally updated blog is at daniel-bartholomew.com, and he also can be found on Twitter as daniel_bart and on identi.ca (and Jaiku and Pownce) as bartholomew.
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