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Old 10-06-2007, 09:33 PM   #1
rgd
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Questions on Sony Reader

Hi Forum Members,

This is my first post here and I want to say I am happy I found this place because it is so helpful.

I am interested in buying the Sony Reader and I was at the SonyStyle store today to take a look at it. The store has both models: PRS-500 and PRS-505. The older model is about $20 cheaper...

As far as I could tell in playing with both models, and as it was already mentioned here on the forum, the PRS-505 has a whiter screen and it is a bit easier to read. But as for speed performance when changing pages, I honestly couldn't see much difference between both models.

Is it worth getting the new model? I realize it is only $20 more...so I guess newer is always better???

Also, regarding the gray scale, I could not find on the reader where you change that setting. And what does it exactly do? Does that make the fonts more gray or less gray??

I apologize if these questions were already asked.

Thanks.
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:00 PM   #2
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I have been using both models the past couple of days reading the same book, switching every 10 pages or so. To me the 505 blows away the 500, the display is clearer( no ghosting yet ), the page controls are in the right places, to me at least the page turns are faster on the 505, plus you can jump to any page on the 505 ( that alone is worth $20 ). My 505 (silver) seems much more thin,solid and polished, the 500 seems like a clunky prototype in comparison. I would say the 505 is worth at least $80-$100 more then the 500 (if the 505 remains free from ghosting). The only thing I like about the 500 in comparison is the cover attachment and the power switch. By the way, the 505 is made in China, the 500 in Japan.

Last edited by darkstar; 10-06-2007 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:20 PM   #3
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I would say the 505 is worth at least $80-$100 more then the 500.
I hope that's hyperbole I just bought a slightly used 500 for $180. It will probably go to my dad for Xmas if the Kindle is any good.
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:30 PM   #4
darkstar
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A slightly used 500 is well worth $180... To me at least the 505 is in another class ( as long as the display stays so nice ).
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:31 PM   #5
rgd
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Thanks Darkstar.

What about the Grey levels? Do you find that it is an improvement over the 500?

Also, where do you change the levels?

Last edited by rgd; 10-06-2007 at 10:34 PM.
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:40 PM   #6
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rdg, welcome to MobileRead, glad that you're here. (BTW: that's NatCh tipping his hat to you as a new member. I don't wear a hat.)

For $20 it is a no-brainer, go with the new 505 model. Not only is the screen better than the 500, it is the only one that Sony has confirmed that they support the new Adobe Digital Editions software on. (While we hope that they will also extend this support to the 500, they have not promised this support.)

Additionally, the new 505 has more internal storage for books, more capacity for add-in memory cards, a new case style, the ability to be seen by you computer as a USB device that the 500 lacks, and perhaps a more recently manufactured battery. The only thing you lose by selecting the 505 rather than the 500 is an AC charger in the package but you can use any USB connection to charge it.

As for gray levels, you do not adjust them, it is internal and determines how the unit renders graphics.

Although I have yet to find enough new features to buy a new one, I will be happy to swap my older 500 for your new 505 and pay you the $20 plus both shipping charges, and a little something extra for your effort.

In short, get the 505 and don't look back.
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Old 10-07-2007, 12:42 AM   #7
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I don't think the extra internal storage is a significant factor. I have a shelfload of books in my 500, at least 3 months' worth of reading. I can't imagine needing more storage, but if I do then it's easy to pop in my $10 1GB SD card.

OTOH, the other differences make it an easy choice to go with the 505 for an extra $20.

Personally, although I'd like a 2nd Reader for my SO, I have a hard time considering one for even $180 after getting mine from the $60 deal.
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Old 10-07-2007, 05:42 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by rgd View Post
Is it worth getting the new model? I realize it is only $20 more...so I guess newer is always better???
The new screen is only one of things that are new in a 505.

For me, the umas device difference(*) would be worth more than $20.
The same goes for page turning butons on the right side.
... And the possibility to have collections on a memory card is definitely worth $20 just by itself.(**)
Also consider the stupid, STUPID *STUPID!!!* way the cover is attached to the old PRS500.
Just try to remove the cover from PRS 500 and reattach it and you will not hesitate even if the old unit was $70 cheper.

On the other hand, we have yet to find a way to "break into" the PRS 500. Sony has disabled the way people are loading ... aehm ... "hacks" to their readers. I do not think I will take long now that kovidgoyal has funds to purchase a new PRS 500 ;-)

DISCLAIMER:
I have never handled an actual physical PRS 505 unit. All the abovementioned opinions are based on information gathered on this wonderful site.


(*) - you connect the new reader to ANY computer (with the possible exception of W95 ;-) ). It simply looks to the computer as an USB memory stick or a portable USB disk. With PRS 500 you need special drivers, special software etc, etc, ...
The dammed thing (I am talking about the PRS 500) will not even CHARGE from USB port if you do not have drivers loaded!
(**) you will understand when you load several hundred books/texts to a card and try to find a book...
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Old 10-07-2007, 10:11 AM   #9
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Also consider the stupid, STUPID *STUPID!!!* way the cover is attached to the old PRS500.
Just try to remove the cover from PRS 500 and reattach it and you will not hesitate even if the old unit was $70 cheaper.
I hate to say this, but I will, you will hate the new cover on the 505. The cover is flimsy in comparison to the 500. And when you have the cover flipped back for reading, it stick out way too much on the right for comfortable holding especially considering the formerly left side page turn buttons are now on the right where the cover sticks out. Imagine a 3 ring binder where the reader is the pages . It's not anchored down at all except on the left edge. While it is easier to get to the back of the 505, it means the cover is not as attached and not as protective. It's a very poorly designed cover. The cover for the 500 is way better.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:40 AM   #10
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When I read with the 500 I keep it attached to the cover, for the 505 I take the cover off, it annoys me flopping around.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:42 AM   #11
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The only thing you lose by selecting the 505 rather than the 500 is an AC charger in the package but you can use any USB connection to charge it.
Do you mean to say you can't charge from an AC outlet at all? Does it have a jack so I could use the 500 wall charger?

If not, that means that if you are out somewhere where no computer is available to charge, you are SOL? That would be totally idiotic if it can only be recharged with a computer's USB port.

Let's see, if somebody only has a desktop, they will have to go buy a laptop and take it everywhere they go with the 505, just to be able to charge it.

Tell me it ain't so, Joe.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:46 AM   #12
darkstar
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I charge my 505 with the 500 charger.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:48 AM   #13
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If not, that means that if you are out somewhere where no computer is available to charge, you are SOL? That would be totally idiotic if it can only be recharged with a computer's USB port.

Let's see, if somebody only has a desktop, they will have to go buy a laptop and take it everywhere they go with the 505, just to be able to charge it.

Tell me it ain't so, Joe.
Er, why not just get a USB mains adaptor, such as:

http://www.expansys.com/p.aspx?i=127388

Somewhat cheaper than buying a laptop, don't you think?
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Old 10-07-2007, 12:23 PM   #14
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Tough call here, but $20 is only a very slight difference; I'd go for the 505. One thing you might want to consider is the ergonomics of the device; i.e., which one feels better in your hands and is more comfortable for your reading style. While many people complain about how the cover is attached to the 500, ask yourself how often you'll be removing it; i.e., never, unless you plan on buying a new cover (the original is more than adequate, in my opinion).

Of course you come to the other, more pressing, factors as well; more internal memory, better grey-scale rendering, and the ultimate, a next-gen screen compared to the PRS-500. I am more than happy with my PRS-500 for reading books, and I believe it will last me until a new device rolls along that has a larger screen; so I won't be upgrading to a 505 anytime soon, unless it's given to me.

Try some more in-store test-drives to see which one fits you better, especially in real-world usage. Good luck!
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Old 10-07-2007, 02:06 PM   #15
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I agree with the sentiment that you should check out the devices for yourself. I have both devices and there are advantages to each.

In favor of the 500, is the cover (for the reasons stated above), the button layout (i liked the buttons on the left side), and the operation of the buttons (the buttons on my 505 are harder to depress).

In favor of the 505, navigation feels faster (faster processor/optimized code?), the screen refresh is faster (not a big deal to many), and, at least in my case, the screen is MUCH whiter/brighter than my 500 (my 500 is 6 months old and the screen whiteness seems to have degenerated over time).

I'm going to take my 505 back to the SonyStyle store and compare the "button operation" with another unit. If the "disc" (lower left) isn't any easier to operate on another unit, I will likely return mine.

To each his own...
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