SONICblue today introduced two new
RioVolt MP3/CD players. The SP250 model is an update to their flagship system, and the SP90 is a new lower-priced model. Both MP3/CD combo players are available immediately.
Unlike some digital audio players, RioVolt systems do not store MP3 audio in on-board solid-state memory storage — instead, they play music CDs and also play CDs containing MP3 and Windows Media Audio (WMA) formatted files. They include Mac digital music management software.
The US$179 SP250 is a refreshed model based on SONICblue’s SP100 system. It sports a long list of new features including:
8 minute shock protection
an integrated FM tuner
a customizable interface based on the Rio 800 MP3 player (including the same backlit LCD display)
rechargeable batteries good for 15 hours of playback
two different styles of earphones
an on-wire remote control
The ability to support firmware upgrades (by downloading and burning to CD, then installing from there)
an adjustable equalizer, repeat and shuffle play modes and programmable play lists
and much more.
The SP90 is also based on the SP100 system. It features a pared-down feature set, but carries a much lower price — $99.
Like the SP250, the SP90 system sports support for MP3 and WMA file formats, and can play regular CDs as well. The system has 2-minute shock protection and will run for 15 hours on a set of AA batteries. The S90 also features the same LCD display and navigation features as the SP100.
Both players are available from
and will be available soon from retailers in North America including Best Buy, Circuit City, CompUSA and Fry’s Electronics.
SONICblue notes that the original RioVolt SP100 model will continue to be available, with a suggested retail price of $149. The company also sells a variety of accessories for all three models.