PSP 2000: The Good and the Bad

By Mike on 2:06 pm

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Sony recently released the much anticipated PSP Slim (aka PSP-2000). Mentioned at this past E3 event, it's generated a lot of buzz, both positive and negative. The portable console's redesign is nothing dramatic. It's been made slimmer and lighter and also includes a TV out function. The latter allows you to hook up your PSP to your TV to watch movies on UMD or memory stick. The PSP is capable of playing back 480p videos on the big screen and can also up convert 272p/240p videos as well. I expect the later would look like crap on an HDTV (since most are LCD, which only likes to display at its native res) but would be similar to VHS on a standard def TV. Photos show component video cables with two RCA audio jacks. I presume there will be composite and S-Video cables as well. The one problem CNET pointed out is the games don't zoom, but stay at their native res and don't appear full screen. You'll have black bars at the side and top of the game screen when playing on TV.

Also up is a redesigned UMD drive. It supports faster load times thorough caching. This reduces load times somewhat, which is good. However, the redesigned load bay is a bit clumsy. It's more like a top loading CD player than the slot and tray in the original PSP. The latch has also been changed to a door which just flips up. I don't know if it locks in play mode but I'd rather have the latch to keep the disc secure.

Hardware wise, the Slim is just that, slimmer than the regular PSP. It's also lighter. The D pad has also been tweaked so it's less soft feeling. Other changes include moving a few components. The IR function has been removed entirely. It was a fairly useless function since nothing took advantage of it. In it's place is the Wifi on/off switch. Battery life has supposedly been improved by improving the energy efficiency of the device. The new slim battery is smaller than the PSP's original pack, coming in at only 1200mAh. The larger 1800mAh and 2200mAh batteries for the original PSP work with the slim but will stick out the back a bit. Word has it that Sony is planning to release a new battery cover for these packs.
Also, Sony has added a couple new themes for the PSP. Rather than the standard "Piano" black, the Slim comes in silver or a "Star Wars" themed version which has a silk screened image of Darth Vader on the back. The latter is set to be packaged with Battlefront: Renegade Squadron as its pack in game. The other two come with Daxter.

On the software side, there isn't much change. Sony has added a theme function to both the PSP Slim and the PSP-100x. All this really does is change your icons and wallpaper, and maybe change sounds. I haven't updated to firmware 3.71 so I can't vouch for that. The latest firmware added nothing useful to both consoles other than a chapter select feature for videos stored on Memory Stick. If you haven't updated the original beyond 3.50, then just leave it.

The PSP Slim is a nice addition to Sony's line of game consoles. The video out is a nice touch and the UMD caching should cut down annoying load times. However, if you already own a PSP-100x, there's no need to run out and buy Slim. The additions are really nothing spectacular and will be more attractive to new PSP buyers than those who already own one.

2 comments for this post


Some bad info here...the new PSP uses a 1200mAh battery. And the 2200mAh and 1800mAh batteries are physically the same size, so they'll both stick out.

Posted on 8 October 2007 at 09:33  

There was a bit of a mix up regarding battery specs so I wasn't sure. I was using older info. It is 1200mAh. I've corrected it. If anybody spots any other mistakes, let me know.

Posted on 8 October 2007 at 10:22