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  1. #61  
    Doubt this will predjudice Slot's evaluation (hope not!), but I thought it might be of interest.

    I've been very vocal with questions and enthusiasm for the new Clies, asking questions on VC and elsewhere left and right, and playing with one at Best Buy for a couple of half-hours. It looked like the replacement PDA for my Handspring VDX had arrived. So I finally bought an N710C two days ago with the intention of it being my PDA for the next couple of years.

    I returned it yesterday.

    Why? Completely subjective reasons, of course. It comes down to two major reasons:

    1) Industrial Design (buttons and jog wheel)
    • Buttons: The button problems been described elsewhere. They're (particularly the up/down rocker) is hard to use, and they feel cheap.
    • The Jog wheel also felt cheap, and not durable -- sort of what you'd expect with a $10 transistor radio from my childhood. I'd planned to used the jog wheel to avoid using the lousy rocker buttons, but it's not a pleasant experience. (However, I seem to remember the jog wheel being more pleasant on an S300, so it may have been a problem with the Clie I bought.)
    • This just left me with a feeling of shoddiness. My VDX, while not fancy, is durable and feels that way. For $500, I expect the same quality or better.
    2) Display
    • Screen (display) size is smaller than my VDX. This never struck me before, but during daily use, the reduction of screen real estate is noticable.
    • The fonts. It's been said before, but Sony really should have done a better job. The default font for many applications is just too thin and spidery.
    • In the end, the Clie seemed to me (even with the High Res mode) to be harder to view with my 40-year-old eyes! An easier-to-read display was really the reason d'etre for me upgrading to a new PDA.

    Maybe I could have learned to like the Clie with time; but if I invest money and time into a new PDA, I really want it to be one that I'm enthusiastic about.

    I like the feel of the Edge and (to a lesser extent) the m505. However, I really want to hold out for high-res (and I feel that Handera's method of doing high-res is not going to catch on), and color would be really nice.

    So... I'm going to wait and see who comes out with a quality solution. I have a lot of hopes for Handspring; I've always felt that their hearts and heads are in the right place, and they're looking ahead. I can definitely wait for something I'll really be delighted with.

    (Thanks to Slot, Mikedemo, bradhaak and everyone who provided all the useful Clie information -- it was a gigantic help!)
    Last edited by bookrats; 06/29/2001 at 01:45 PM.
    Jeff Meyer

    "And he died like he lived: with his mouth wide open."
  2. #62  
    Congrats Bookrats,

    You did the right thing. All our tastes are different. hope you are able to find your replacement device.
    Last edited by mikedemo; 06/29/2001 at 03:42 PM.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  3.    #63  
    Originally posted by mikedemo
    Slot,

    Find this program called "VMB". Its is an excellent picture viewer. VMB allows you to view 8bit Bitmaps files. And my God do they look awesome.

    First thing yo need to be aware of is that it only views images on the Memory Stick. But don't worry. This app is way faster than PG Pocket. It doesn't generate thumbnails, which allows you to start chosing the image you want to view right away. It also supports over sized images which look great and you an slide it around to view other areas. (this screen is so sharp)


    Getting the bitmaps on your Clie is easy. Just seat your Clie in the cradle, go into AudioPlayer and do :menu: then "k" which starts the transfer mode. Now your memory stick is recognized by your computer as a removable drive (cool eh). In windows, drag and drop your images (1 or multiple files) onto the MS. This is also the best way to get mp3 files on the Clie as well .

    You can even make a folder for your images if you want using "McFile".

    Remember it only works with 8bit images for now. But I am sure once the 610 and os4 update for the 710 are released that it will support 24 bit as well. You'll still be impressed.

    Even though it doesn't have an automated slide show feature, VMB is my preferred image viewer on the Clie. (I still use PG Pocket once in a while)

    This is INCREDIBLE!!!!

    Trying..to...post...can't....let go of...CLIE....
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  4.    #64  
    Okay, I'm getting over the feature overload for the CLIE, and I think I can be a little more coherent. This is going a lot faster than my 505 test drive because I've got a mental list of points to re-visit.

    Reflect THIS!!!!!!!!!
    As everyone has said, the display cannot be bested by ANY lighting condition. Not only that, its beautiful in 80% of lighting conditions. At one point last night, I thought I had beaten it. Then I remembered that I had the brightness tuned down to about 30% from an earlier experiment! No contest. One caveat is that running some apps with high res support slows them down. For example Vegas Slots takes about 1.5 seconds to spin on the 505 (direct CPU support for 160x160), and about 4-5 seconds on the CLIE w/hi res support; 3-4 without. There is no change in the graphics, only the fonts.

    Color for Gaming
    A good example of the difference is in the AstraWare game Atomica. There were quite a few times I screwed up a level with the 505 because the purple and red molecules were too hard to tell apart. On the CLIE, there's no doubt in your mind!

    Color for Business
    With the built-in PIM funcs on the 505, the yellow highlight is hard to make out under most lighting. On the CLIE in ANY lighting, it looks like you drew on your screen with a florescent highlighter. In very low light conditions, the PIM functions are equally usable, although the CLIEs colors are always bolder.

    Marvels of miniaturization
    I am equally impressed with what both companies have managed to squeeze into these boxes:
    CLIE - Visor Deluxe form factor with about 5 times the features!
    m505 - Palm V form factor with about three times the features!

    High Octane
    Going through exercises like the ones that mikedemo has provided, I can say that the CLIE is without a doubt the handheld of choice for the enthusiast. There are so many things you can do with this thing. Things that add to the exisitng list for any Palm OS machine. The list starts out with the out-of-the-box features, pictures, video, audio, resolution tweaking, gaming while listening to tunes, mounting the mem-stick on your desktop, and just goes on ad nauseam. This is without:

    1 - OS 4 upgrades
    2 - Future gaming, graphics and productivity software! I can only imagine the results when developers start programming the MQ chip directly!

    The 505 as I have said before, offers a tremendous amount of balance in a rock solid, small package.

    More later, got to go play....
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  5. #65  
    Originally posted by slotmachine
    More later, got to go play....
    This is getting interesting.

    I guess you see what I have been talking about. Bliss baby pure bliss. The Sony basically made a Palm that can best compete with the iPaq. Thats Why I love this baby. Many say it isn't revolutionary but you gotta admit this device is bound to set a new standard in expectations of a PDA. It does basically everything a Palm does well and a whole lot more.

    IMHO for the money the Clie is the most bang for the buck. Put aside all you prejudice towards the MemoryStick or against Sony. They came correct this time. There will be those that don't like it and thats fine. Do I think its the perfect PDA . . .no, but if they do come out with a good wireless/phone module I might build a Sony shrine in my house.

    I guess Sony should put a warning on the box saying:

    The Clie PEG-N710C is not suggested to be used anybody who thinks a PDA is just for names and number, business apps, should not play music, should have a monochrome display or semi decent color display. In that case save $50 bucks and get a Palm M5 series.

    As I have welcomed the Handspring and Handera 330 to the Palm Platform family. The Sony Clie is just as welcome and probably will teach Palm the company a lesson.

    With anything you do whether big or small, do it well or don't do it at all.
    Last edited by mikedemo; 06/29/2001 at 07:15 PM.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  6. #66  
    Originally posted by slotmachine
    . . . 1 - OS 4 upgrades


    Its on its way


    2 - Future gaming, graphics and productivity software! I can only imagine the results when developers start programming the MQ chip directly!
    I can see some serious games written for the this device as well as other Palms once they go hi-res. Game boy advanced watch out. Imagine "Ababall" supporting Hi-res.

    Y'know if Palm were smart they should come out with a Palm M505-SE
    So they could include a brightness control. Heck throw in a hi-res 320x320 screen, but that would **** off those that bought the M505. Oh well. Gonna have to wait for the ARM based palms to see Palm inc kick some *** . . . I hope.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  7. #67  
    bookrats wrote:
    • The fonts. It's been said before, but Sony really should have done a better job. The default font for many applications is just too thin and spidery.
    • In the end, the Clie seemed to me (even with the High Res mode) to be harder to view with my 40-year-old eyes! An easier-to-read display was really the reason d'etre for me upgrading to a new PDA.


    I felt the same way. Hopefully Sony will release some larger fonts for the built-in apps. I'd probably prefer the smaller fonts on a word processing program, where there's a lot of formatting, but for something like the To Do list, bigger is better. Fortunately, it's an easily fixable problem.
  8.    #68  
    Another great quality of the CLIE display is its stability across lighting conditions. I am sitting in a room with one window. The sun is shining brightly outside, and there are no lights on in the room. The frontlight on the CLIE is set to about 90% brightness. In the dark corner of the room, the display looks great. As I move from that corner to the window and the bright sunlight, the quality of the display does not change as the bright sunlight takes over from the CLIE's frontlight. The pictures look exactly the same at both extremes. The 505 was readable under both extremes, but it did not look as good in direct sunlight as it did in a dark room.

    This is not a huge feature, but it is evidence of great engineering.
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  9.    #69  
    A quick note of commentary from my daughter when she first saw the built-in "fruit" picture:
    "Oooh it looks there's a picture on top of it!!!!"

    I can't add anything to that!!
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  10. #70  
    Originally posted by slotmachine
    Another great quality of the CLIE display is its stability across lighting conditions. I am sitting in a room with one window. The sun is shining brightly outside, and there are no lights on in the room. The frontlight on the CLIE is set to about 90% brightness. In the dark corner of the room, the display looks great. As I move from that corner to the window and the bright sunlight, the quality of the display does not change as the bright sunlight takes over from the CLIE's frontlight. The pictures look exactly the same at both extremes. The 505 was readable under both extremes, but it did not look as good in direct sunlight as it did in a dark room.

    This is not a huge feature, but it is evidence of great engineering.

    Man you are truly putting those devices through its paces. I am curious to see which ends up on top in your world.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  11.    #71  
    Originally posted by mikedemo



    Man you are truly putting those devices through its paces. I am curious to see which ends up on top in your world.
    By the way MD, sixteen from Red Mercury ROCKS!!
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  12. #72  
    Yeah Sixteen does a great job of show ayou what that display truly can reproduce.

    As happy as I am with the Clie, I still miss my Prism. I'm here at my fiancees house and I just put the Handspring 1.4 update and the contrast utility on the Prism. I got to see once again how the Prism has the warmest color of any PDA. She served me well and I thank that great little gadget. My Fiancee can tell I miss it and once in a while tells me "Don't even think about taking it back" followed by "I'm gonna pat you down before you leave the house"

    I guess theres some withdrawal symptoms. But that Hi-res display viewable outside and the built in Mp3 player of the Clie has helped me go cold turkey on the Prism.

    I truley love both devices. Atleast I'll still see the Prism considering how I'm marrying the woman I gave it to. (It was a great way to score points with her too )
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  13.    #73  
    Here's a few very rough figures to put the CLIE's resolution in perspective

    CLIE screen - 2.5" x 2.5"
    Horiz and vert. dots per inch = (320 / 2.5") = 128 dpi

    My monitor - 12" x 9.5" (actual viewing area)
    Horiz pixels = 12" x 128 dpi = 1536
    Vert pixels = 9.25" x 128 dpi = 1184

    So roughly, looking at the CLIE is like looking at PC monitor set to a resolution of 1536 x 1184. Ka-blang. Ker-blooee. Kah-mayah-mayah!
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  14.    #74  
    Originally posted by mikedemo
    I truley love both devices. Atleast I'll still see the Prism considering how I'm marrying the woman I gave it to. (It was a great way to score points with her too )
    The coolest feature you've described is a fiancee that likes PDA's!!
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  15. #75  
    Originally posted by slotmachine
    Here's a few very rough figures to put the CLIE's resolution in perspective

    CLIE screen - 2.5" x 2.5"
    Horiz and vert. dots per inch = (320 / 2.5") = 128 dpi

    My monitor - 12" x 9.5" (actual viewing area)
    Horiz pixels = 12" x 128 dpi = 1536
    Vert pixels = 9.25" x 128 dpi = 1184

    So roughly, looking at the CLIE is like looking at PC monitor set to a resolution of 1536 x 1184. Ka-blang. Ker-blooee. Kah-mayah-mayah!
    Wow. I never thought it out that way. No wonder the images are so sharp.

    VMB really sold me on the graphics have you tried it out?
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  16. #76  
    I have been waiting to get the 505 because I had not yet seen the clie in person. Well today the best buy here in town finally had the clie on display, and it convinced me to keep my visor deluxe.

    Why? I thought the screen was awesome!!! The high res fonts made me swear that my next palm will be high res, thus preventing a 505 purchase. But, it will not be the clie.

    Reasons why the clie is not worth my $$$
    1.) Those up/down buttons are useless.
    2.) It seems to run as slow as my visor when comparing it to the 505 and the edge.
    3.) No Audible.com support for the MP3's, so I must keep my rio500.
    4.) No vibrating alarm. (I ordered an Innopak 2v for my visor when I got home tonight)
    5.) It is as thick as my vdx.

    My perfect handheld is the 505 with the 710c screen. I'll save my money. It will no-doubt arrive some day. None of the current color Palm units justify $400-$500 IMHO.

    Jeff

    P.S. Handspring, I would have bought the edge today if it could use my keyboard. That thing is slick and the alarms are nice and loud, but for that money, it is an insult to ask me to replace a $100 accessory.
  17. #77  
    jeffbeerman2,

    you are so cool with that personal beer tap at home. Does it feed from your local pub?
    Last edited by mikedemo; 07/02/2001 at 09:54 PM.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  18.    #78  
    Originally posted by mikedemo


    Wow. I never thought it out that way. No wonder the images are so sharp.

    VMB really sold me on the graphics have you tried it out?
    MD,

    Did you get VMB off of palmgear? By the way, I just noticed you were in multimedia. Is the 710 making your job easier?
    That IS a Palm III form-factor in my pocket, AND I'm happy to see you.
  19. #79  
    Originally posted by slotmachine


    MD,

    Did you get VMB off of palmgear? By the way, I just noticed you were in multimedia. Is the 710 making your job easier?
    I got vmb from this great Clie user group at yahoo.

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CLIE_Users_Group

    Once you sign up you can access the files they have there. Theres loads of stuff there. Just make sure to turn "Message Delivery " off in the "Edit My Membership " or you will get over 60 emails a day from the user group.


    As far as the Clie being helpful. It's just like any other Plam which helps me schedule my hectic day but this baby can also sing me to sleep on my train ride home.
    -Mikedemo
    It's all about how you spend the money.
  20. #80  
    Originally posted by mikedemo
    jeffbeerman2,

    you are so cool with that personal beer tap at home. Does it feed from you local pub?
    Now that you mention it, i have built commercial systems close to 500 ft long. I even built a multi tap system which had over 2 miles of total tubing in it. Hmmm, if I moved close enough to a bar with a decent brew on tap.....
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