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MiniJam vs. SoundsGood

Mon Sep 18, 2000 - 12:30 AM EDT - By James Hromadka

Accessories & Software

Battery Life:  The SoundsGood (10 hrs)uses less of the Visor's batteries than the MiniJam (5 hrs), and both modules will have battery packs available in the future for extended use.  The SoundsGood, however, will have the ability to be used outside the Visor with the EnergyClip, while the MiniJam will still need to be inside the Visor when using its PowerPak.

System Requirements:  The MiniJam and SoundsGood are compatible with all recent versions of Windows.  Mac users, however, are currently only supported by the MiniJam.  It is not know when (or if) the SoundsGood will have Mac compatibility.

Included Accessories: The MiniJam comes with earbud headphones with a retractable case and a carrying pouch for the Visor+MiniJam.  The SoundsGood comes with standard earbud headphones and a carrying case for the module and headphones.  Taste in earbud headphones will vary, but I preferred the one for the MiniJam, as it has a retractable case and has foam covers.  The earbud headphones for the SoundsGood hurt my ears and felt too big.

Both companies have plans for additional accessories.  The MiniJam will have various speaker and power accessories available in the future. Click here for the list.  The SoundsGood will have the EnergyClip and a cassette adapter available later this year.

Included Software:  The MiniJam includes the Plus version of MusicMatch, allowing for CD ripping to create your own MP3s.  The MiniJam also has AlbumToGo  for viewing pictures and Peanut Reader for eBooks.  SoundsGood has the free version of MusicMatch, which takes longer to create MP3 files.  Both modules include desktop software for transferring MP3s from the desktop to your Visor.

The Future: Both modules store the Visor application code in flash memory and can be updated with future software releases or bug fixes. The SoundsGood module implements MP3 decoding on a general purpose 32-bit ARM7 digital signal processor that can be reprogrammed by users with future software upgrades. These upgrades might include other audio decoding formats like WMA, Ogg Vorbis, ACC, SDMI, or even non-audio applications. The MiniJam is hardwired for MP3 decoding only, but is working with applications vendors to make their content compatible with the MMC so users can store PalmOS data there.

Conclusion:  If you are looking for a standard-size module, want the faster transfer speed, or want longer battery life, than the SoundsGood is for you.  If you want additional extra features, more accessories, and better expandability, the MiniJam is the better choice.  Either way, you can't go wrong by purchasing either of these two modules.


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