Elliot reviews the new Cowon Z2

Sleepover Review for the Cowon Z2 MP3 Player


16GB £219

32GB £259


~ An Elliot Holmes Review ~


• The Cowon Z2 features a 1GHz ARM CORTEX-A8 CPU for speedy operating and app handling.

• The player runs on Android so you can install apps through ‘side-loading’ or by installing free Google apps through an Android Marketplace third-party app.

• Since this is a Cowon player you can expect the same exceptional sound and the rest of their range.


• Google certification would be lovely so you can gain direct access to the full Android Marketplace but this seems pretty hard to obtain. Hopefully this will happen in the future.

• Due to the glossy plastic front you will have to deal with some smudges and fingerprints so you might want to stock up on microfiber cloths to combat this.

• While the screen is clear and well sized you do need to be a bit firmer with your presses, for example sliding to different home screens, to make it respond.

Initial Verdict

Cowon players have been known for their near-unrivalled sound quality for a number of years now but in today’s ever changing market that isn’t always enough. With the inclusion of the Android operating system, internet browsing and an HDMI output, along with that epic sound, it’s clear that Cowon are aiming to keep up with the features users want and not be left at the back of the pack.

The Cowon Z2 player is a must if you’re on the lookout for a premium sounding player with a generous smattering of other handy features.



15 thoughts on “Elliot reviews the new Cowon Z2

  1. Pingback: Hands on review of the Cowon Z2 » Advanced MP3 Players blog

  2. Mark

    I wish Cowon would make a good quality, simple and small MP3 player like the S7.

    I’ve got a smartphone, I don’t need another gadget than can run (some) apps and browse (presumably only over wifi) the web, but I could do with another high quality, super compact MP3 player!

    Come on Cowon, concentrate on great sound quality instead of faddish gimmicks!

  3. James

    And what exactly is the resolution and size of the screen?

    The capacity of built in sd card, if any? Total expandability?

    That would be fairly useful information for a review… ;o)

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Hi James,

      Thanks for the comment. This is just a brief overview of the Z2. A more comprehensive review is to follow with the above information included. Check back here for the full version soon.

  4. jeff

    cowon needs to release a new T2 size mp3 player with a microSD slot.

    cowon needs to release a media player that has decent coaxial S/PDIF and optical ADAT outputs for incorporation into hi end DAC set ups, perhaps it could have a BCN clock input for external clocking? come on! i’m not asking for AES/EBU (although it would be nice!) where are the mp3 players that have S/PDIF??

    cowon needs to release a decent dj mp3 player with top qulaity speed/tempo adjust and reverse play and things – where is cowons’ answer to tonium pacemaker?

  5. joy

    I bought this unit and not really satisfied with it. First, the stand by time is a joke. Fully charged, i left it for about 3 days and the power fully drained off. Second, the screen is not as smooth to interact with as compared to iphone/ipod touch. Good thing is i can copy and paste music without running through programs such as itunes.

  6. Chris

    Is there a limit to the total number of tracks, as the J3 had 8,000 max. If so, no amount of SD card expansion will help me; otherwise, I’ll order one today!

    1. Stephanie Post author

      Hi Chris,

      The total number of tracks would be dependent on the file type you intend to put on the Z2. For mp3 files you’ll fit a lot on to the 32GB of space – probably somewhere in the region of 7000 – 8000. For FLAC files they are similar in size to video files and you’d fit significantly less of this type onto your player.

      Any further questions, do ask.


  7. courtney

    i plan on buying a z2 to run directly in to a preamp. i want to know if i should drop $300 on this gadget or just run my laptop with jet audio.

    1. Stephanie Post author


      Thanks for your post.

      The Cowon Z2 does sound lovely so should work out well if you connected one to your pre-amp. However, your laptop would likely have a bit more output power so might give you a bit more volume.

      That said this would depend on the soundcard you have in the laptop and obviously a laptop would take up a bit more space than a Z2.

      Kind regards,
      Elliot Holmes (Sales Supervisor)


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