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Review: Nokia N8

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The N8 is a formidable multimedia monster.


The N8's music player offers few updates when compared to the older S60 media player. Essential functionality is the same. Open the app, and you have access to artists, albums, and songs. Chose your favorite sorting option, pick your playlist, and enjoy the tunes.

The main player has typical controls. Users can also easily set up loops and shuffle tracks. There are several controls for adjusting the sound quality. First, there are some preset equalizers. (It boggles my mind that S40 handsets offer 7-band user-adjustable EQs, but the N8 doesn't.) The N8 also allows users to adjust stereo widening effects, as well as the L-R levels when connected to stereo headphones.

The one new thing Nokia has added is the CoverFlow effect, which allows you to sort through your library visually via album artwork. I like CoverFlow, and it works fine on the Nokia N8.

Music playback sounds really, really good through stereo headphones. As a certified audiophile, I have no real complaints about how good the sound is. Sound was also good through stereo Bluetooth speakers, though with the typical stereo Bluetooth detractions.



The N8 also has a capable video player, and some serious sound-processing software on board, including Dolby 5.1. I sideloaded a movie onto the N8, hooked up the HDMI cable to my HDTV, and enjoyed some "Live Free or Die Hard" on my TV. The picture quality wasn't HD because the file was encoded thus, but it was definitely DVD quality . The digital movie is properly encoded with Dolby 5.1, and the N8 was able to pass the signal successfully through my living room home theater rig for large, booming sound. Due to the HDMI cable set-up, the N8 serves quite well as a portable video player. Throw in the N8's 720p HD video recording, and you get the basic idea what Nokia was going for with the N8.


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