The Sony Walkman NWZ-A17 delivers a non-Android alternative at one quarter of the price so why would you want the ZX2? Well there is the design (yawn) and apparently the sound quality.
The NW-ZX2 has a carved aluminum case and more solid headphone jack. As well as touchscreen navigation, there are dedicated volume and transport controls that are indented to prevent accidental selection.
It is larger than a standard smartphones, (67 by 133 by 19mm) and has a textured back. It has a 4-inch LCD screen and weighs 235 grams.
Becuase the Walkman runs Android 4.2, it means you can load streaming apps onto the device and enjoy them in higher quality than you'd expect from your typical phone although you will need a Wi-Fi hotspot to stream.
The player will playback digital files up to 24 bit/192 kHz in MP3, WMA, AAC, FLAC, AIFF, WAV, ALAC and, importantly, DSD formats. It has 128GB of storage and a microSD expansion slot which can take up to 64GB more. So it can handle all those formats which are supposed to be the next generation of sound,
Sony says the onboard lithium-ion battery that provides up to 60 hours of MP3 or 33 hours of hi-res per charge.
Reviewers seem to be divided on the sound quality. Apparently there is not $800 worth of sound quality between the cheaper and more expensive Sony machine. This is going be a hard sell.