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Samsung YH-820 review

A 5GB MP3 player that fits neatly into a child's mitten

Our Verdict

This is a funky fella, but there are better alternatives for your money from the likes of Apple and Creative


  • Not flash-based
  • HDD
  • Lightweight and cute
  • Voice recorder


  • Slow to find tracks
  • Cheap earphones
  • Poor playback time

Not all hard disk MP3 players are created equal.

Exasperated, we eventually achieved something close to an enjoyable listening experience from this diminutive player, but it took three sets of headphones before we were satisfied with the output.

If you're the self-conscious type, you're not likely to feel comfortable wearing a pair of Technics bins, walking down the street looking like Princess Leia.

Sadly, the earphones that came with the Samsung YH-820 are poor. Like being trapped in a cave full of vipers, there's a hiss that just won't go away.

Our iPod earphones, once swapped over, produced a nice bassy sound, and we had to change the EQ settings on the Samsung to 'Rock' before our toes started tapping again. And then we began to enjoy ourselves, lost in the delicacy of the Solaris soundtrack and a pre-Nurofen rendition of Ace of Spades by Motorhead.

We want to like this player more than we do, because it's dinky, lightweight and packs almost 5GB of space into its Kylie-like build. We're even content with the simple to use software and the fact that we can record our voice and display JPEGs in the small colour screen. What are we not happy with? The battery life and the slow menu.

It's great that this unit charges to full power in less than three hours, but we only got the same amount of playback from it. In layman's terms, that's two Moby albums, Sgt Pepper's and a Kate Bush retrospective. Is this better than an iPod mini? No. Better than a Creative Zen Neeon? Nope. Better than a smack in the teeth? Yes, probably.