Product review: Sony's portable CD player/radio

Friday, June 23rd 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

No, the ZS-X7 isn't the name of a new Japanese sports car. But Sony's portable CD player/radio has plenty of sports car-like qualities.Start with its sleek shape - somewhat of a cross between a Porsche dashboard and a UFO (most people blurt "cool!" on first glance). Then throw in some quirks, such as buttons with exotic names like "DISPLAY ENT MEM." Aside from the controls, which take some getting used to, everything about this boombox screams, "Let's hit the road!" It has high-tech electronic skip protection that keeps your CDs cruising no matter what bumps you encounter. It has a low-tech carrying strap that attaches quickly and firmly if you want to keep your hands free for carrying sunscreen and a cooler. And you don't have to be paranoid about taking the ZS-X7 outside because of the dirt- and water-resistant construction, which Sony describes as "splashproof." Though sound quality is merely adequate - this won't replace your home stereo - the music plays distortion-free even at volumes loud enough to annoy everyone at surrounding picnic tables.

The ZS-X7 comes in black or yellow and should be available for about $180.

You can certainly buy a cheaper boombox. But after a test drive, you may not want to. Visit or call 1-800-222-7669 for more information.