Samsung's YP-P2 multimedia player looks like a slightly smaller and skinnier version of Apple's flagship MP3 player; and like the iPod touch, it provides a touchscreen for navigation.

Available in 4GB (£129 inc VAT) and 8GB (£149 inc VAT) flavours, the Samsung YP-P2 features a crisp and colourful 3in widescreen (480-by-272-pixel) display, which makes video viewing a pseudo-cinematic experience. Its abundant EQ settings and audio presets are ideal for people who love tweaking audio settings.

Bluetooth 2.0 connectivity lets you pair the Samsung YP-P2 with a set of Bluetooth headsets or speakers. Unfortunately, the player's FM radio doesn't support Bluetooth 2.0, so you can use Bluetooth only for digital audio and video playback.

We tested the Samsung YP-P2's wireless performance with Samsung's own portable BS300 Bluetooth speakers, and the device demonstrated good wireless range. Given a clear line of sight to the speakers, audio streamed without interruption from about 85ft away. Through a closed door, audio streamed uninterrupted from about 30ft away.

Although menu navigation is clean and intuitive, it took us a little while to get used to the Samsung YP-P2's touchscreen control. When you turn it on, the main screen displays three options: videos, music, and pictures.

But more menu options lurk below those; to see them, you must swipe your finger downward on the Samsung YP-P2's screen. Doing so brings up the Bluetooth menu, settings options, a file browser, an FM radio with 30 presets, and podcasts (which Samsung calls "datacasts").

File support is a bit limited. The Samsung YP-P2 works with WMV and MPEG-4 video, MP3 and WMA music files, and JPEG images. Digital video download/rental service support is restricted to CinemaNow and Vongo.

You can drag and drop files directly on to the Samsung YP-P2 or use the bundled Samsung Media Studio software to put music, movies, photos and datacasts on the device via the bundled USB cable.

To supplement its touchscreen, the Samsung YP-P2 has volume buttons (on the right side), a power button (on the left side), and a hold switch.

You'll definitely want to engage the hold switch while wiping off the screen because, otherwise, accidentally wiping the Samsung YP-P2 with your sleeve can trigger the player's customisable "horizontal swipe" function, resulting in skipped tracks.

NEXT PAGE: using the touchscreen, and our expert verdict > >

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Samsung's YP-P2 multimedia player looks like a slightly smaller and skinnier version of Apple's flagship MP3 player; and like the iPod touch, it provides a touchscreen for navigation.

We found the touchscreen responsive and even a bit better than the one on the Apple iPhone. The screen does smudge more easily, however, and a few navigation shortcomings make the iPhone or iPod touch's interface slightly more user-friendly.

For one thing, the Samsung YP-P2 screen lacks the pinching and multitouch gesturing features of Apple's touchscreens. And to select menu items on the YP-P2, you must double-tap them. Although this makes for fewer missteps when you're navigating menus and selecting songs, it adds a frustratingly redundant step for accurate touch-screen touchers.

The Samsung YP-P2 is packed with adjustment options, including ten equaliser presets, full manual control (if you want it) over the EQ settings, four manual bass settings, and a "3D sound" control that generally improved audio richness. The bundled earbuds are adequate, but they favour treble while offering a merely serviceable low end.

You can choose any of six onscreen visual options to look at while the music's playing: album art, an animated equaliser graph, artist info, and three trippy animations.

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Samsung YP-P2 : Specs

  • 4GB media player (8GB also available)
  • 100x52x10mm
  • 85g
  • Lithium-Polymer battery type
  • manufacturers battery life (audio): 35 hours
  • (video): 5 hours
  • USB cable included
  • earphones included
  • supported digital audio standards: MP3, WMA
  • ID3 tags support
  • TFT LCD touchscreen, 480x272 pixels
  • supported image formats: JPEG
  • FM tuner
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • 4GB media player (8GB also available)
  • 100x52x10mm
  • 85g
  • Lithium-Polymer battery type
  • manufacturers battery life (audio): 35 hours
  • (video): 5 hours
  • USB cable included
  • earphones included
  • supported digital audio standards: MP3, WMA
  • ID3 tags support
  • TFT LCD touchscreen, 480x272 pixels
  • supported image formats: JPEG
  • FM tuner
  • 3.5mm headphone jack

OUR VERDICT

The Samsung YP-P2's wide aspect ratio and superb screen support great viewing, while excellent audio quality and an abundance of equaliser options are major draws for serious sound buffs. It's a somewhat pricey option for anyone seeking a better overall experience than the iPod touch provides, along with integrated Bluetooth connectivity. The navigation, design, and touch-screen experience fall short of Apple's latest, though.

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