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Sony’s $1,200 Walkman NW-ZX2 for Audiophiles Is Ready for Pre-Order

Do you have an extraordinary sense of hearing and a couple-thousand bucks burning a hole in your pocket? Sony wants to talk to you. The company's Walkman NW-ZX2, announced at CES with impressive stats and a staggering $1,200 price tag, is now available for pre-order. It's aimed at audiophiles, that elite set who claim to be able to hear a massive difference between low-quality streaming or downloaded music and high-quality stuff they rip themselves or get from special HD audio stores. The NW-ZX2 looks like a high-end phone, and it does run Android, but it's chock full of custom hardware and software to improve the sound of whatever you're listening to.

There are cheaper high-quality players, and (believe it or not) more expensive ones, but Sony is hoping just over a grand is the sweet spot. If you want to spend more, you might just wait a bit: Last year's new Walkman model costs less than half of 2015's, so the 2016 model might be even more opulent.

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—Devin Coldewey