Cowon Plenue 1 Review

Cowon’s flagship player, the Plenue P1 is a refreshingly focused unit. It’s a music player creates for the hi-fi purist – someone who puts sound performance above all else. If you’re after internet, video or something you can download a few apps onto, this is not the machine for you.

The Plenue P1 inherits a high quality of sounds and classic design of appearance as a high-end HI-FI player. Cowon Plenue 1 also adopts Burr-Brown’s well-regarded PCM1792A chip, PCM files up to 24-bit/192kHz, high-resolution audio, ARM Cortex dual-system, touch screen and more.


  • Nicely finished anodised aluminium and about the size of a pack of cards.
  • Its edges are slightly rounded but the overall feel is of a chunky angular unit – an impression reinforced by a weight of around 170g.
  • The physical control count is low, with just hard buttons for power, play/pause, skip and volume.
  • The rest of the functions are accessed from the 3.7in AMOLED touch screen.

Build of Cowon Plenue 1


On the whole the P1 is easy enough to use and offers a number of tweaky adjustments

  1.  Multitude of EQ settings. There’s a staggering 50 EQ presets on offer – from the usual Normal and Bass Boost options to leftfield settings such as Feel The Wind, Mild Shore and Flange.
  2.  Burr-Brown’s well-regarded PCM1792A chip, which bodes well, as it’s also found in a number of higher end stand-alone DAC designs.
  3. File compatibility is impressive and includes PCM files up to 24-bit/192kHz, single and double speed DSD as well as DXD. Chances are, whatever file you have, the P1 should play it.
  4. 128GB of built-in memory as standard. This is expandable to a maximum of 256GB thanks to a microSD card slot (hidden behind a plastic flap on the base).
  5. A microUSB under the flap opens up the P1 to being used as an outboard DAC for a computer, which is useful. The player’s headphone socket also doubles as an optical output, which is less so.
  6. Built into the Cowon’s case is a 3000mAh battery that is good for a claimed 8.5 hours of continuous use.

Features of Cowon Plenue 1

Pay attention: You’ll need headphones too, as the Plenue doesn’t have built-in speakers. It doesn’t have Bluetooth either, so you can’t stream music wirelessly to a speaker or system.

By the time you read this, may be you will ask:” Does it means I couldn’t apply Apple music on Cowon Plenue 1?” Well, logically, you are not able to extract any Apple Music tracks to non-Apple device. But you can make it possible by converting Apple Music tracks to MP3, and this is the reason why Apple Music Converter exists!

Apple Music Converter is a full-featured software used for helping Apple Music subscribers remove the DRM protection. It means you can convert Apple DRM protected music to compatible Cowon Plenue 1 format like MP3, AC3, AIFF, FLAC, MKA, etc.
Free TrialFree Trial

How to Convert Apple Music to MP3

Step 1. Install and Launch the Program

After installation, double click the icons to launch the program. iTunes will be opened with it automatically. The music in your iTunes will be displayed on the main interface of the software.

Install and Launch Apple Music Converter

Step 2. Select the Music and Preset Settings

Tick the Apple music file you want to convert > On the bottom of main interface, select MP3 as your output format.

Select MP3 as Output Format

Step 3. Set Options

Click the “Options” button on the top of the window. You can choose preserving the Metadata information in output MP3 and M4A file.
Set Options

Step 4. Convert the Music Files

Find and click on the “Convert” button. Then it will pop up a converting window. All the Apple Music files can be converted on by one, you can check the task process here.

Convert the Music Files

With this simple 4 steps, you can easily convert Apple Music songs to Cowon Plenue 1 via USB.


The Sound of Cowon Plenue 1 is particular concerned by audiophile. So we did several evaluation based on different bitrate audio.

Alanis Morissette’s Wake Up (24-bit/44.1kHz). The recording is delivered with an authority and solidity very few portable players come close to.

Moving onto Bjork’s Lionsong (24-bit/96kHz), the P1’s articulate and refined nature is neatly demonstrated. The player’s laid-back sonic balance works well here, as does its ability to dig up instrumental textures and render them in a subtle way.

Yet, that’s not to say its rendition isn’t enjoyable. We found ourselves paying more attention to the vocals than usual. alt-J’s The Gospel of John Hurt (16-bit/44.1kHz) sounds relaxed when it should excite. The P1 doesn’t capture the bite in the track nor would the relentless momentum as well as we like.

We used the Plenue as a stand-alone DAC and got some fine results with an Apple MacBook loaded with Pure Music software as source. We listened to a range of files from Eminem’s Mockingbird (320kbps) to Hans Zimmer The Dark Knight Rises (24-bit/192kHz) and thoroughly enjoyed what we heard.

The sound of the Cowon when used this way is a significant improvement over that of the laptop alone, delivering a combination of resolution, insight and dynamic expression the computer barely hinted at.

According to Cowon Plenue 1 review, you probably would have an overview of this music player. Those that use Smartphones for their regular music fix are in for a treat when they listen to the P1. And if you have other reviews on Plenue 1, write down your comment below and share it.