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Archos' AV 400 Nine-Ounce Personal Video Recorder, TV and More

No More Complicated Than A VCR

The VCR menu is more interesting. This makes it possible to program a recording on the living room VCR or decoder. It also lets you record directly. You can choose between 512 x 384 and 320 x 240 formats, depending on the type of final reproduction. You can also set the sampling rate at up to 48 kHz and the compression rate at up to 2,500 kbps. You can even change the brightness, contrast, color and saturation. The AV 400 creates a DivX 5 with an AVI sound extension and ADPDCM stereo. The file will be in 25 ips at 24 bps.

PC-like

Finally, the navigator lets you manage your content just as you would on a PC - you can create files or folders, rename them, move them, delete them or copy them. To simplify these operations, a double navigator has been introduced. The screen is split in two, divided by source and destination. This makes it much simpler to move or copy an item. Although this interface may not be the most ergonomic or the simplest for a newcomer, it is much more suitable for experienced PC users. You won't need instructions because you will find the logic to be very familiar. Due to lack of room, you have to make do with a cross and five buttons. However, this works well when using the corresponding controls displayed on the screen.

Speed And Long Life?

In terms of battery life, the AV 400 won't drive you crazy, which is pretty understandable in view of its small size. The battery can be replaced, which is a good idea, and gives you around 10 hours of MP3 listening time and a good three hours of video, which is not bad. The transfer speed using a 1.8" Hitachi hard drive and USB 2.0 is quite fast. It will take around 12 seconds for 100 MB consisting of 30 files.