|Sony Portable Reader System PRS-500|
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Oakland, CA, USA
|Sony PRS-500U2 is a portable reader system that lets you read e-papers and e-books in comfort. With e-Ink screen type, a 6-inch screen with high resolution of 170 pixel-per-inch, and 4-level gray scale, this Sony digital reader ensures that your reading experience is actually better than paper-based reading. Weighing about 250 g (less than 9 oz) and only half inch thick, this Sony portable reader rivals paperbacks in its ease of handling. Sony PRS-500U2 a soft, black cover that feels good in your hand, and its software lets you browse the Connect eBookstore for thousands of e-book titles. Electronic books can be easily transferred from computer to this Sony digital reader. The best part about owning a compact and convenient Sony PRS-500U2 is that its 64 MB built-in memory and multi-format support lets you carry many of your favorite books and documents with you wherever you go. This Sony portable reader also lets you play audio in privacy, with 1.8 inch mini audio headphone interface.|
|Family Line||Portable reader|
|Display Size||6in (15.24 cm)|
|Hard Drive Capacity||640 MB|
|Supported File Types||AAC, BBeB, JPEG, MP3, PDF, RSS, RTF, TXT, ePub|
|Processor Speed||800 MHz|
|Display and Screen|
|Display Tech||E-Ink ® Pearl|
|Display Max. Resolution||800 x 600|
|Connections and Expandability|
|Expandability||Memory Stick Card Slot, SD Card Slot|
|Audio Input||Line In (3.5mm)|
|Height||6.9in (15.24 cm)|
|Width||4.9in (12.36 cm)|
|Depth||0.5in (1.52 cm)|
|Weight||0.56lb (0.25 kg)|
|Battery Technology||Lithium ion|
|Battery Run Time||Up to 4 hours|
|Additional Technical Informations|
|Input Method||5 Way Navigation Button, Camera|
Slim and relatively lightweight; screen requires no backlight and is easy to read in bright environments; with the addition of optional memory card (SD or Memory Stick Pro), it's capable of storing thousands of electronic books; font size can be adjusted with a single button push; decent battery life; displays PDF and Word files, most image files, and plays MP3 and AAC audio.
Overall, the unit feels a tad sluggish, with a short but noticeable delay when turning a page; controls aren't as intuitive as they could be; interface could be slightly easier to use; Sony's online Connect bookstore is still a work in progress; proprietary Connect book files aren't compatible with other devices and are often as expensive as paper books; Connect software isn't available for Mac owners; no support for Audible audio books.
Though the Sony PRS-500 Portable Reader System is an impressive platform for reading e-books and other documents, the price and availability of compatible "books" makes it a tougher sell.
Average review score based on 16 user reviews
of customers recommend this product
I bought this because I travel a lot, and hauling around 2 (or 3 or 4) paper books adds a lot of weight to my luggage.
I miss holding paper books, and miss the ability to flip back to somewhere earlier in the book to check a reference.
On the other hand, the screen is great, the battery life is fantastic and I have 75 books on the internal memory and space left.
The built-in MP3 player reminds me of the very first MP3 players - no playlists, no random or loop features, but it works. Don't use it myself, but it's there if I want it.
Simple and well-designed interface
Good price vs. the 505 (which is quite a bit better, but also loads more expensive)
Sony's software won't convert HTML files (but will do RTF???) although libprs is a good alternative
Sony's software won't run on 64bit Vista (nor does their website mention this small but important detail)
No page turn buttons on the right side
Finally an ebook reader device worthy of the name. First the screen which is like nothing I've seen before, it really is close to paper and so much easier to read than an LCD. I've read it for hours and my eyes have never got tired, unlike an LCD. It's not great for flipping through books as the changes are quite slow but this just isn't an issue when reading a normal book. Battery life really does last for months.
Typically being a Sony product it looks just great and the size is perfect. The online store isn't great yet but you can make your own ebooks.
I bought this for my Mother-in-law who has lupus and mixed connective tissue disease. She has been unable to read because it causes her too much pain. She cannot even turn the pages of the book. This one came with a stand she can just set it in to charge and I can take it to download books for her. She loves it and the push button turn works wonders as well as being able to change the font size. The only downside was I had to get the updated software from Sony which meant sending it away for 3 weeks but at no cost to me.
To all of you complaining about the lack of backlight - there isn't supposed to be backlighting! The breakthrough with this device is Sony was trying to get as close as possible to the readability of real paper books as they could in a digital format. How many of your printed paper books have backlighting???
I can read mine in any light that I can read a "real" book in. No glare, no blurring, no limited viewing angles -- ALL problems I had with previous readers with "backlighting".
Even though this particular model is discontinued, for a basic E-Reader it fulfills all of my needs. While later models may have more features and memory (the PRS 500 only has 640 mb of memory and cannot connect to wi-fi) I find that it's ease of use and sd card slot more than make up for this. If you're looking for a good, solid, no frills E-Reader, this one definitely fits the bill very well!