Sony Clie PEG-N760C

Thursday, August 29, 2002Rating: 5 Rocks!

Summary: A great multi-purpose PDA running Palm OS 4.1 (in other words, access to my mission-critical apps and thousands of other quality programs), with photo and audio apps added in. It also reads Sony's miniscule Memory Stick.

Pros: The screen. The screen. Did I mention the screen? Nothing comes close. It's like going from EGA to XGA, like going from dot matrix to laser, like going from night to day. The double benefit of double-resolution screen, and in color just take your breath away. Oh, by the way, it's a full-fledged MP3 player, complete with cool headphones and an inline volume/track/play controller built in. And (this just keeps going on) there's the Back button! Finally, I can use my deeply ingrained web behavior, and back up through the Palm. I've always floundered when I wanted to go back to a previous application, because Palm OS doesn't provide a close button. This is even better. OK, one more; the Memory Stick can be accessed from Windows through drive-letter access. I can stuff any kind of file on there. Time to get a bigger one.

Cons: The photo viewer doesn't read JPGs, they have to be converted to PGPocket viewer format. It's free, and it works, but that's more of a hassle then throwing the pictures on the Memory Stick. The video viewer is a joke - all grainy and jerky. Good thing I didn't buy it for that. OK, I'm trying hard to cover both sides here: touching the screen. I guess because of the space the front-lighting takes up, I have to press harder than I expect to touch the screen. As it is it's so beautiful I don't want to hurt it!

Who: I got mine for $260 refurbished at a Sony Outlet store. Great deal! These retail for $400, but you can find them used for less, because they're an "older" model. If you want color on a Palm OS PDA, this is the one for you. Other color Clies will probably work, too, though - they all have about the same screen. This one has the big bonus of the MP3 player, though. It doesn't have the keyboard that the 70s do, but I tried those in the store and didn't like how it worked anyway.


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