Pontis Unveils New MP3 player

By Robert Menta- 2/25/00

This week German MP3 manufacturer Pontis will introduce its latest entry into the MP3 portable arena at the CEBIT fair running from Feb 24th to March 1st in Hanover Germany

The new unit, the Pontis SP504, will ship in April and has some very interesting design specifics which bring it into the league of the second-generation portables out their like the Rio 500.

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The new Pontis, which retains the same look as the original Mplayer3 (now called the SP503), sheds the parallel port technology of its predecessor upgrading to a faster USB interface for quicker file transmission.

The SP504 comes in two flavors, a 32MB and a 64MB version. The unit is unique in that it uses two Multimedia (MMC) flash memory cards. The MMC's are the smallest of the flash cards, about half the size of the Smart Media cards found on the Rio 500 and one fourth the size of the CompactFlash cards found on the RCA Lyra. The size advantages of these cards are obvious, but they are also limited in capacity maxing out at 32MB (the CompactFlash cards in comparision are up to the 300 MB range).

By utilizing two slots for memory, the SP504 enjoys the benefits of the tiny cards while still reaching the 64MB capacity range. Higher capacity MMC cards are on the horizon

The 64 MB version is priced at $239.00 which makes it competitive with units with this much memory. The same for the 32MB version which, at $179.00, is the least expensive unit to date with a USB interface.

Pontis plans to ship these players late March/early April.

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