Samsung YP-K5 (4GB)

The Samsung YP-K5 is a unique MP3 player with a fun interface and great sound quality; it may be bulky around the middle, but it's an excellent choice if you want to share your tunes quickly and easily.

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Spring is an anxiously awaited time of year in the gadget world because it's when tech companies roll out some of their hottest gadgets in preparation for the holiday buying season. September in particular seems to be the prime month for MP3 player announcements, with last year marking the debut of the Apple iPod Nano. It looks like 2006 is set to continue this tradition, with the sleek Samsung YP-K5 leading the way. This unique flash player, available in 2GB (AU$289) and 4GB (AU$369) capacities, may be a bit pricey and thick around the middle, but that's not stopping it from turning some heads.

In the closed position, the K5 isn't that remarkable looking -- rather reminiscent of the Olympus M:robe MR-100 -- but its smooth, black body feels good in the hand and its shiny face is eye-catching. Once the device is powered on, the visual experience becomes even more pleasing. Like the M:robe, the K5 features touch-sensitive controls, backlit in pleasing shades of blue. A centre circle select key is surrounded by four arrow indicators, while Back and Menu selectors sit kitty-corner to one another on the outskirts. A smallish (1.7-inch) colour OLED screen resides above the controls, and along the top edge is the power/hold switch. The bottom edge of the player houses the headphone jack and a proprietary USB port.

The K5 is on the large side for a flash player -- it measures about 99mm by 48mm by 18mm and weighs a relatively hefty 108 grams -- but there's a good reason for this. If you flip the player on its side and push up the bottom edge, a built-in speaker slides out. What's great about this is that the speaker is designed in such a way that it angles itself up, not only propping the face of the player at an ideal viewing angle, but pointing the speakers up and forward so as to direct the sound at the listener. We've seen MP3 players with built-in speakers before, but none have shown this kind of ingenuity. What's even better is that the speakers actually sound OK -- tinny and lacking in bass, but certainly passable, and better than any other built-ins we've heard. And they get quite loud.

Another cool feature is that the interface automatically rotates when the speakers are pushed out. And we're totally smitten with the K5's interface in general. The playback screen is dominated by a large EQ graphic, below which song information scrolls (you also get a battery meter and a time-elapsed counter on this screen). When you don't touch the controls for a while, this screen fades to a screensaver of your choosing (analog clock, various animation graphics, photos). The music menu offers the usual choices of Artists, Albums, Playlists, and so on, and as you scroll through these options (or any other list, for that matter), a bouncing sphere indicates your position -- cute! Our favourite is the top menu, though, which is a bit difficult to describe in words. Its main selections are represented by different images -- headphones for Music, a wrench for Settings, and so on -- which are made up of animated blue dots. As you shuttle through the options, the dots morph into the next image. It's just a little visual effect, but it adds a certain flair to the K5 and makes it fun to use.

The K5 comes with a rather decent pair of rubber-tipped earbuds, a USB cable, and a software disc. The last includes Samsung's Media Studio 5, but it's not necessary to use this to transfer music to the player. The K5 is compatible with various jukeboxes and services, including Windows Media Player 10 (which is one of the system requirements for the player). Supported audio formats are MP3 and WMA, including DRM-10 for use with to-go services. The device also has an FM radio with seemingly limitless presets, and it displays JPEG photos, though we don't recommend it as a photo viewer; images were rather dark and had a noticeable screendoor effect. As with other Samsung players, the K5 includes various sound effects, such as 3D Sound, Bass Boost, and Concert Hall. You can even use the player as an alarm clock, just be sure you leave the speaker flipped out.

Overall, the K5 proved to be a great little performer throughout testing. The touch pad was not overly sensitive, and the device responded immediately to all commands. Even through the included headphones, sound quality was top notch. Through our Shure E4c test 'phones, tunes coming from the K5 sounded stellar, with rich mids, all-encompassing bass, and a sparkly high end. We got clear, detailed sound across all genres of music. And the sound effects provided some interesting twists, especially Concert Hall. Rated battery life for the player is 6 hours through the speakers or 30 hours through headphones, and CNET Labs was able to eke out a more than respectable 32.7 hours.

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browny posted a review   

The Good:evreything

The Bad:nothing

if u want it go ahead and by it


vrad posted a review   

The Good:everything

The Bad:non-customisable

great, bought one 2 years ago, still working brilliantly!


Siplup posted a review   

The Good:Looks cool o_o
Nice features
Tastes good?
Speakers are awesome, especially for music classes where you have to examine music in groups ._.

The Bad:A bit bulky x.x
But meh, awesome can't always come in micro size >;o

Truly awesome, bought one today for only $101 :3 Last one in stock o:!


Cupcake posted a review   

The Good:Its got speakers which is great for sharing music
The sound quality is great
It is one of a kind. If you want to be different THAN THIS IS FOR YOU
Its got radio
Its got a great alarm clock

The Bad:Nobody has one (they should)
Speakers may not be used that often

look if you want the yp-k5 to be something like the i-pod nano which does NOT have speakers on it. Face it you would be thick if you had sliding speakers mounted on your **** Look just get a k3 its like the k5 but way smaller got a bigger screen and a few more features. Its so stupid to compare it ot the nano.


leb04lyfe posted a review   

The Good:everything is made to the best quality
suites people with big hand(me)

The Bad:nothing

ipods are bad
this samsung makes them llook like $Hit


Badger posted a review   

The Good:Multi-functional
Long battery life
Excellent sound

The Bad:A little bulky in comparo but that's the point
Touch screen has no tactility so you have to look at it to change setting or songs
No lanyard attachment point

I travel a lot and enjoy having music to sleep to. Up until now I've had to rely on a laptop or lug around an extra set of portable speakers. The K5 fits is exactly what I was looking for. The sound it produces is excellent, battery life is great and functionality is top notch. There is a sleep timer so you can sleep to music, and then have it play to wake you up. Overall very happy with the unit. Oh and one last thing, the switching of songs is very quick, something that you can't always test before you buy. There are only 2 down sides. First small thing is there is no way to attach a lanyard so you need to keep the player in your pocket or in a pouch on your belt. Secondly the interface is really nice with the touch screen however it means you need to pull the unit and physically look at it to adjust anything. For someone who likes to change things a lot, and is used to fiddling without having to look at the player, this is mildy annoying and is the only reason why I haven't rated it 10.

kyle west

kyle west posted a review   

The Good:great quality speaker sound
easy and simple interface

The Bad:no video
usb needed
gets smudgy

ok heres the main problem,it can show pictures in a slideshow,while playing music but it cant play videos


chris posted a review   

Great MP3 player!

Not expensive at all. Got mine for $250 (4GB). Easy to use. Got the hang of it in the first 5 minutes. Speakers are of great quality. Now come the negatives.

-Screen could be at least 2 inches
-Smudgy Surface

That's about it. I rate it 9/10

(Worth buying)


la- posted a review   

looks great, thinking of buying one but when you listen to the music .. can you only listen by the speakers ?


chris00111 posted a review   

The Good:menu is easy, design, speaker, headphones.

The Bad:screen is too small, VERY EXPENSIVE for 4 gig and only 4 gig? Atleast make a 30 gig...compete with iPod. and lack of accessories

Cool MP3 player! Looks very good, and the speaker does have decent sound to show off your music.

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User Reviews / Comments  Samsung YP-K5 (4GB)

  • browny



    "if u want it go ahead and by it"

  • vrad



    "great, bought one 2 years ago, still working brilliantly!"

  • Siplup



    "Truly awesome, bought one today for only $101 :3 Last one in stock o:!"

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