We first had the pleasure of meeting the Zen Neeon 2
last month, when the long-awaited update to the Zen Neeon
was released. Now that they're finally reaching our journo friends in across the Pacific, CNET Asia
has put one through its paces. To review, the Zen Neeon 2 comes in 1, 2 and 4GB sizes ($114, $152 and $203 respectively) with a 1.5-inch 128 x 128 color screen, video playback support, voice and line-in recording, and an FM radio. However, the videos that it does play are only AVI RGB565 files (who uses that?), so you'll need to convert first. Also, due to its screen dimensions, a 4:3 or 16:9 video playing on the Zen Neeon 2 results in letterboxing, a definite downside. The new Singaporean player also got dinged in CNET Asia
's review for relying solely on that obscure video format and maintaining the old scroll wheel design -- it received a 7.4 rating out of 10. All of that said, we think think that anyone trying to watch something on a 128 x 128 screen has larger problems than letterboxing.