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Old 07-23-2007, 11:43 AM   #1
donovanh
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Solar powered reader?

I was sitting in the sun reading the other day, and was wondering if it would be possibly to rig up a mini solar cell to the power input on the reader. Did you ever use a solar powered calculator with the little panel at the top? I pictured a similar sized solar panel either affixed to the top of the reader, or maybe folding out from under the cover so that it was out of the way when not in use.

Perhaps something like this:

http://store.sundancesolar.com/minsolpan3v2.html

Personally I don't have access to a soldering iron to give it a go. But perhaps if someone with more technical knowledge would care to comment on whether something like that would work?
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:28 PM   #2
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Nice idea, but the Sony takes 5v so that cell would be too underpowered. Sorry.
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:41 PM   #3
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You'd probably want something more like this:
http://www.amazon.com/Logic-PSP-Sola.../dp/B0009F1EEC

It's a solar panel+battery that pretends to be a PSP charger.

NB: I haven't actually tried this, but my nephew has a similar gizmo that he uses to power his Nintendo-DS.
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:48 PM   #4
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How about a Solio ? I've heard good things about these, but unless you can acquire an appropriate "tip" to charge the Reader (as if from a wall outlet), then even this wouldn't be much good. It's just a shame the Reader won't charge from any powered USB, because otherwise this would be perfect.

Last edited by anotherchance; 07-23-2007 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:53 PM   #5
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That's a pity about the power use.

Perhaps one of these on the inside of the cover...

http://store.sundancesolar.com/po6v10flsopa.html

Edit: Wrong url :P
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:07 PM   #6
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This would be a great addition to the Sony Reader if anyone actually finds one that works with it.

I'd think that the Solio would work with the psp tip, but then again I wasn't aware about the Reader not charging off of any mini-usb connection.

Wasn't it confirmed that the Reader would charge off of a PSP charger?
How does the Reader tell what kind of power it is being fed and if it should "accept" it?
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fain View Post
I'd think that the Solio would work with the psp tip, but then again I wasn't aware about the Reader not charging off of any mini-usb connection.
Ah!! I didn't know about the PSP charger. Maybe that could work. Although I don't have a Reader, a PSP or a Solio, so this is all speculative at this point.

So would this Solio tip be any good I wonder?

My understanding (from reading these forums) was that the Reader couldn't be charged via USB unless it was from a PC that had the Connect software installed. Did I get that right?

Without devices on hand, and someone brave enough to try it we'll never know...

Last edited by anotherchance; 07-23-2007 at 04:35 PM. Reason: PSP Solio Tip page
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:47 PM   #8
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Ah!! I didn't know about the PSP charger. Maybe that could work. Although I don't have a Reader, a PSP or a Solio, so this is all speculative at this point.

My understanding (from reading these forums) was that the Reader couldn't be charged via USB unless it was from a PC that had the Connect software installed. Did I get that right?

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...&highlight=psp

There it is. I knew I had read something about the PSP charger working on the Reader somewhere here.

So I would think the Solio should work. I read over the specs, sounds like it should do the trick just fine.

Great find anoutherchance.

I went ahead and ordered a Solio, I travel very heavily, and while I rarely need to charge the Reader, the option of being able to do it without being tired to a powerplug is appealing to me (paper books themselves have this perk over the Reader, but looks like the Solio may take that advantage away from them )

I'll let everyone know if it works with the Reader or not.

Last edited by Fain; 07-23-2007 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 07-23-2007, 04:33 PM   #9
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Great find anotherchance.

I went ahead and ordered a Solio, I travel very heavily, and while I rarely need to charge the Reader, the option of being able to do it without being tired to a powerplug is appealing to me (paper books themselves have this perk over the Reader, but looks like the Solio may take that advantage away from them )

I'll let everyone know if it works with the Reader or not.
Well done Fain for taking the plunge on that. If nothing else, you should be able to charge your phone and your ipod(?) and things with it, so I look forward to hearing how you get on. I assume you ordered the PSP tip with it?

Here's the full list of Solio connector "tips" for those who haven't clicked through that far.

Last edited by anotherchance; 07-23-2007 at 04:39 PM.
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Old 07-31-2007, 12:49 PM   #10
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Received my Solio, and it works fine At least the Reader says it does. I'll only charge it from the Solio (I use SD card and my laptops card reader to transfer new books) for awhile to confirm that it is indeed getting charged.
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Old 07-31-2007, 03:48 PM   #11
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Received my Solio, and it works fine At least the Reader says it does. I'll only charge it from the Solio (I use SD card and my laptops card reader to transfer new books) for awhile to confirm that it is indeed getting charged.
Great news. Fingers crossed for lots of sunny days....
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Old 08-01-2007, 03:12 AM   #12
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How does the Reader tell what kind of power it is being fed and if it should "accept" it?
According to the connector that the power is coming in through.

Anything will work that provides power through the 5.2v wall charger connector, but it will only charge via USB if some type of device driver is present, rather than a "dumb" USB power supply.
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Old 10-04-2007, 09:14 AM   #13
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Anything will work that provides power through the 5.2v wall charger connector, but it will only charge via USB if some type of device driver is present, rather than a "dumb" USB power supply.
Am I right in thinking that this limitation will go away with the 505?
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:22 AM   #14
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Yes, the 505 will charge on a normal USB connection on any computer whether the Sony app is running or not. It also acts like an external hard drive.

BTW, I bought a smartphone the other day that had what looked like an extra battery. Turns out it is a solar cell and they supplied a windowed battery cover to go with it. I guess you have to hold it in the sun to use it. I haven't tried it yet.
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Old 10-04-2007, 12:38 PM   #15
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Yes, the 505 will charge on a normal USB connection on any computer whether the Sony app is running or not. It also acts like an external hard drive.

BTW, I bought a smartphone the other day that had what looked like an extra battery. Turns out it is a solar cell and they supplied a windowed battery cover to go with it. I guess you have to hold it in the sun to use it. I haven't tried it yet.
This has been an interesting thread. The Solio also comes bundled with a standard mini-USB tip and that's exactly what my Cybook Gen3 requires! So, with the PSP tip and the standard Solio 1000 I can charge both of my readers via solar!

Derek
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