If you are not residing under a rock for the last couple of decades, you are probably familiar with Walkmans. Sony has released a handful of them throughout the years. And the true successors to the premium NW-WM1Z and NW-WM1A are here! However, Sony decided to amp up their build quality game by gold plating one of the new variants.
The latest announcement has brought light to the new and highly anticipated hi-res audio players. Firstly, there is the NW-WM1AM2, which looks just like what you would expect a Walkman of this age to look like. Then, we have the NW-WM1ZM2, which Sony decided to gold plate.
As you have guessed after reading the titles, these are true successors to the NW-WMZ and NW-WM1A that came out in 2016. The main difference between these two successors is that the ZM2 one features a premium chassis. Boasting 99.99% purity, the body of the ZM2 has oxygen-free copper gold plating.
This gold plating makes the ZM2 look really flashy. And as you might have expected, the price of the ZM2 got raised significantly, all thanks to the gold plating. In fact, if you compare it to the AM2, the ZM2 is three times higher in price. But all of that gold and craftsmanship that it bears make up for the price tag.
That said, you will be amazed to know that the material is not just there for making the walkman look luxurious. It has a functional purpose too. Sony states, “It realises a stronger digital ground and higher rigidity, enabling clear, expansive sound, so you can experience each instrument as if it were performing live.”
Now, your first thought would be to take that with a pinch of salt as there are no test results out yet. But you do need to understand that we are talking about Sony here. And if they are confidently stating that the gold plating is not there just for aesthetics, it probably is not.
But that is not all that is different between the two models. The ZM2 also features premium Kimber Kable cabling. This cable runs to the balanced headphone jack from the amplifier. It even has double onboard storage, which is at 256 GB. However, you should note that both the new models have a microSD card slot.
Nonetheless, the audio quality and the cable upgrade bring good news to those who can actually afford this shiny artistic piece. You will be not only capable of showing it off, thanks to the gold plating, but also enjoy superior music quality.
Other than that, the new M2 walkmans both bring a lot of upgrades to the table. They both have a large 5 inches display on the front, which features an HD resolution. Both saw a battery life boost and can offer up to 40 hours of FLAC playback. They both support WiFi connectivity and Android 11.
Slava is a man of mystery and no-one seems to know exactly where he is at any point in time. When he isn't enjoying writing about all things audio and technical he can be found researching his next project of interest. The man never rests.