CoolerMaster Hyper 6

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CoolerMaster Musketeer

Corsair TwinX512-4000

Enermax CS-5190AL-061


D-Link DMP-90 Portable MP3 Player
review by David, 10 September 2001


With MP3s being readily available all over, regardless of the RIAA's efforts to try and get rid of MP3s altogether, practically everyone has heard, and also own a substantial collection of MP3s. With its small file size and sound quality comparable to that of CD-audio, MP3 files have become the file format of choice for everyone. So its not surprising that portable MP3 players have cropped up, in all shapes and sizes. This allows people ro bring their music with them wherever they go, be it on the bus to work, or while attending to business in the commode.

MP3 players nowadays consist of 3 types, those that play from solid state memory i.e. CompactFlash, those that play from mini harddisks, namely a nifty implementation of notebook harddisks in the player, and also those that play from MP3s burned onto CDs.

The D-Link MP-90 is a player that fits the first type, holding its MP3s on its onboard memory as well as CompactFlash / SmartMedia memory cards alowing for more storage space. This is a relatively new offer from D-Link, which is more known for its networking products as compared to entertainment based products. Costing about RM 130 (USD 34.21), depending on where you buy it, the DMP-90 seems like an attractive value for money purchase.

Product Specifications

  • Compact and Light
  • 16 MB Built-In Memory
  • Memory Expandable with 16 MB and 32 MB SmartMedia Memory Cards
  • Equalizer: Normal, Classic, Jazz, Rock
  • Supports 24Kbps - 256kps MP3 files
  • Parallel port interface

One minor niggle about this particular product is its inability to support memory cards above 32MB. This means you're effectively limited to only 48MB total of MP3 storage space on the player, where 16MB of that is built into the player itself. The chart below is taken from D-Link's website.

Song Length

Compression Setting

File Size

Seconds (minutes)
available w/ 16 MB

Seconds (minutes)
available w/ 32 MB

Seconds (minutes)
available w/48 MB


128 kbps MP3

4939 KB

1018.18 seconds
(16.96 minutes)

2036.36 seconds
(33.92 minutes)

3054.54 seconds
(50.88 minutes)


96 kbps MP3

3705 KB

1354.18 seconds
(22.57 minutes)

2708.36 seconds
(45.14 minutes)

4062.54 seconds
(67.71 minutes)


48 kbps MP3

1853 KB

2708.36 seconds
(45.14 minutes)

5416.72 seconds
(90.28 minutes)

8125.08 seconds
(135.42 minutes)


24 kbps MP3

927 KB

5484.13 seconds
(91.40 minutes)

10968.26 seconds
(182.8 minutes)

16452.39 seconds
(274.2 minutes)

So it basically boils down to how much of a compromise in quality you will be willing to take when trying to fit as many songs as possible into the DMP-90. The more songs you want to put in, the smaller their filesizes will have to be. The standard bit rate for MP3s available on the Net is usually 128kbps, but most people prefer at least 192kbps, since it sounds better. I personally rip all my audio CDs at 320kbps though, since harddisk space isn't a major concern with me. D-Link recommends using 96kbps fpr optimum balance between audio quality and file size. As you can see, at 96kbps, you can fit a little over an hour's worth of music into the DMP90.

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