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Review: Nokia E71

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The E71 is not a multimedia phone, but that doesn't stop it from besting some dedicated music devices out there. Nokia's E Series devices lack the cool carousel of the multimedia-focused N Series, but the applications themselves work almost exactly the same.

You can add a shortcut for the music player to the dock in your Active Standby setting. Opening it up brings you to the music player's main menu. This menu lists the artists, playlists, songs, albums, etc. Using the options menu (left soft key), you can access some options from here, which include some organizational tasks such as creating playlists or moving music around.

When music is playing, the options menu lets you access the shuffle or repeat functions, as well as the EQ. There are five pre-set EQs, but the E71 also allows you to add what appears to be an unlimited number of your own presets with a five-band EQ. This is more functionality than many dedicated music phones have. I was able to dial in the exact type of sound I wanted, and let Opeth crush my ears for a while as I wrote this review.

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The rest of the controls work as expected, and the D-pad is your main controller for playing, pausing, rewinding or advancing your music. If you exit out of the music player, the E71 adds a shortcut to the phone's home screen (even if you don't have Active Standby on) so you can quickly pause a track if need be. You can also set tracks stored on the phone as your ringtones if so desired.

Incoming calls pause music, which resumes after the call is complete.

The E71 also has an FM visual radio. This worked flawlessly. I was able to find my favorite local radio stations with ease, and sound quality was decent, though not on par with some other phone-based FM radios we've heard.

The E71 comes preloaded with the Nokia Music Store software. Since the Nokia Music Store is not available in the U.S., we were unable to test this feature.

The one bummer is, the E71 has a 2.5mm jack for headsets. So if you want to use your own stereo music headphones other than what's provided in the box, you're going to need to buy an adapter. But then, the E71 doesn't purport to be a music device.


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