updated 03:10 pm EST, Thu February 19, 2009
Philips GoGear Ariaz
Philips in an out-of-season event today revamped its GoGear media players with a pair of new models that are higher-end than usual. The GoGear Ariaz is pitched to audiophiles as a boost in audio quality with Philips' FullSound audio engine improving the frequencies and sound stage of compressed files. A bundled set of noise-reducing headphones also improve sound by focusing attention on the music.
The player also has a control scheme unlike that of most Philips devices and combines touch-sensitive buttons with a rocker switch that the Dutch company believes is quicker for scrolling through long playlists. A 2-inch screen, FM radio and support for MP3/WMA audio as well as MPEG-4 video round out the device. The Ariaz should come in 4GB, 8GB and 16GB storage levels at prices equivalent to $100, $126 and $164.
The GoGear Opus has Philips' more familiar directional pad but has one of the company's largest screens ever at 2.8 inches and gets the same FullSound plus noise-reduction headphone upgrades as the Ariaz. Bluetooth has also been added and gives the player support for wireless headphones. Other features and format support are also the same as on the smaller player, though storage doubles across the board with 8GB ($126), 16GB ($189) and 32GB ($228) models; in the UK, it also supports downloadable videos from the BBC's iPlayer TV replay service.
Both GoGear variants should ship to Europe in April. US releases aren't mentioned, though Philips makes much of its line available to the country. [via Pocket-lint]