Wednesday, April 13, 2005


Awesome. Apple finally let that ever-so-sweet-yet-incredibly-fierce kitty out of the bag. This will be the best Operating System to ever grace the face of any electronic device anywhere. Period.

Metadata. Automation. Dashboard. RSS. H.264 AVC. CoreImage. CoreVideo. Full 64-bit OS.
It'll run great on one of those nice new Mac Minis for $499 too...

A Brief Review of the PSP

Overall, the PSP is a great portable gaming system, with some multimedia features that will be more useful to some than others. It has a lot of room for improvement, but it is also starting from a great place. Here is what I thought of the various features:


The PSP’s most prominent feature is, of course, it’s stunning 4.3 inch 16:9 wide-screen display. The display has three brightness modes, which can be toggled through via the display button.

Rating: 5 out of 5


What good would a portable gaming/multimedia device be without a good set of controls? The PSP fares fairly well in this area, and the controls are comfortable and easy to use. The flattened analog joystick-type control on the bottom left is not much use, at least when compared to it’s close relative found on the PS 2 controllers. it moves only in 2D space, and it’s difficult to distinguish between different directions, as it only has 4 possible directions, with 360 degrees of movement.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Battery Life

This one has been a pretty big issue lately. The PSP gets between 3 and 7.5 hours of battery life, depending on what it is being used for. This, in my personal experience is fine, especially when compared to the battery life of say, a laptop being used for similar purposes. The shortcomings people are complaining about are mainly the result of comparing the PSP’s battery life to that of the iPod, which gets about 12 hours, or the iPod mini, which gets about 18 hours of nonstop play. The DS from Nintendo gets something on the order of 12-16 hours if I recall correctly. let me set something straight. The PSP is not a DS. It is also most definitely not an iPod. If anything, it is similar to a laptop in design and use. Now, compare the PSP to the competition. The best laptops ( Apple PowerBooks and iBooks) get around 5 hours of life, tops. The PSP, clocking in at 6 or 7 hours beats them. Also, the PSP can play graphics-intensive games off an optical drive for that long! Even a very good laptop would not get more than 2 hours of life while performing similar tasks.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Removable Media

This is one area where the PSP currently falls short. In it’s typical fashion, Sony only includes Memory Stick Duo and UMD drives, both of which are proprietary media formats. As if that weren’t bad enough, Sony has the relative audacity to charge $220.00 USD for a Gig of storage in Memory Stick Duo format. Fortunately, SanDisk will sell you one for just $150.00. Neither price is all that encouraging, especially considering that it’s just a memory card for a gaming system. I think it’s very likely that Memory Sticks will drop in price, fairly rapidly in the near future. Even so, Sony would have been smart to include an internal hard drive, ala the iPod Mini. They could also have released UMD burners to the consumer market, which they have not done thus far. I have heard rumors that Sony is considering building a future PSP model with an internal 50 Gig hard drive. Nice. Sony, please fix this.

Rating: 2 out of 5


Need for Speed: Underground Rivals was the only Game I could afford to buy after going nearly bankrupt from the initial purchase of the PSP. It’s a great game, though I may somewhat biased from a long history of playing the previous NFS games. Here’s a tip: you can download save files from that will unlock most or all of the cars in the game.