ShockSuit SportCase Review

The Future of Palm Protection
is what they say on their web site about the new ShockSuit SportCase by RhinoSkin.  I don’t know about
that, but this new PalmPilot/PalmIII case sure looks futuristic. And although it is light
in weight, it looks like you could punt it across the room and not damage your Palm PDA.
(But please don’t test me on this). I love the design, which is simple, yet engineered to
be a very protective case. It completely envelopes my PalmPilot.

shocksuit1.jpg (5652 bytes)shocksuit3.jpg (5576 bytes)shocksuit4.jpg (3969 bytes)

The ShockSuit SportCase is made of sturdy nylon
coated foam rubber, with reinforced sides, corners, and bottom.  The top 4 corners
are connected by a plastic bracket, or “frame”, that stiffens the entire case.
This frame is one of the most important features, because it is designed just the right
size to allow almost the entire front of either PalmPilot or PalmIII to be accessed. (The
only thing that you cant access is the contrast wheel on the side, but I never adjust
mine.) Yet it holds the Palm in place very securely. The right side of this frame has 2
clips that hold your stylus securely in place.

shocksuit2.jpg (4655 bytes)

The cover is connected to the case below where the location of
the IR port on the PalmIII would be.  This is a good feature, not only so you can use
the IR port while it’s in the case, but so the cover can be flipped behind the case while
you enter data on the screen. The inside surface of the cover is lined with a soft felt to
protect the screen from scratches. It secures to the frame to close the case using Velcro.

shocksuit5.jpg (9423 bytes)

The foam back and cover have rigid inserts that are similar in
design to what you would find in a knee brace. (Although in the knee brace, they are metal
rods). But the design concept is similar and this offers great protection while not adding
much to the case in bulk or weight. At the weight of only 2 oz. and the size of 5″ x
3.5″ x 1″, it’s not much larger than the Palm itself, and about as big as most
of the other cases reviewed on this web site. That said, I only have a few shirts that
have pockets large enough to fit this case especially since the belt clip button sticks
out of the back of the case. But if you use the belt clip, that’s not an issue. And
speaking of the belt clip…

The ShockSuit SportCase comes with a handy belt
clip, which has a easy quick release button to remove the case from your belt.  The
case snaps in and out effortlessly. The location of the belt clip button on the case
enables the case to pivot while you are sitting down with it on. And it doesn’t swing too
much when walking.

shocksuit7.jpg (7054 bytes)

There is an opening in the bottom of the case so you can HotSync
using The Bridge or one of
the HotSync cables. This is another great feature.  It gets to be a pain if you have
to remove the Palm from the case every time you want to HotSync.
But beware,
although The Bridge will work with this case using the Palm III, it will only work in the PalmPilot Pro cradle.
The “curved” Palm III cradle does not allow this case and The Bridge to be used
with it.

shocksuit6.jpg (6050 bytes)

I really like this case a lot. I seems to have everything that
most of look for in a case.  The ShockSuit SportCase is versatile
with it’s access to the IR port and the HotSync opening, offers great protection, is light
in weight, has a belt clip, and is very cool looking!

Price: $34.95 – available in black, blue
and gray colors

Pros:
Superior protective design.
Light in weight.
Belt clip.

Cons:
Can’t access the side contrast wheel.
May be too large to fit in a shirt pocket.

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111 thoughts on “ShockSuit SportCase Review”

  1. Thanks for the review! I just wanted to add two comments based on what I’ve heard on various message boards:

    1. The d-pad apparently loosens up over time. Can you keep us posted to see if that happens with yours?

    2. I’ve heard that if/when the Wi-Fi dies, just removing and reinserting the battery seems to “reset” it, without having to do a hard reset. But that seems not to be your problem… hopefully it’s related to your unit’s failure, Julie :confused:

    Sorry to hear about the troubles. I’m planning on getting one, hopefully I’ll be luckier. 🙂

    Are you also planning on reviewing the 1910?

    thanks,

    –bdj

    p.s. Great, great smilies on the new bboard. I love ’em. :love:

  2. The plan is that if I can sell my 5455, that I’ll buy the 1910. Here’s hoping! 😮

    Glad you like the smiles! I wanted some that were ‘different’ that most I’ve seen on other boards.

  3. I am hoping that sending my 5455 in to HP will take care of the bulk of my problems…I’ll certainly update the review if I find that to be the case.

    Judie :0)

  4. Now that you have used the 5450 and the Tungesten are you satisifed with the Palm PDA or are you still looking for something new?

    What don’t you like about the T? You mentioned it was fast, you can add memory to it, you don’t need WIFI, BlueTooth or fingerprint security..what else is there?

    I am trying to make my mind up whether to purchase the T or 5450.:rolleyes:

  5. The Tungsten T is great and I love it… for now. As a gadgeteer, I’ll never be satisfied though. There will always be something better, different, cooler that will catch my eye.

  6. I just switched from a 3975 back to palm ( T) ,
    the Ipaq is by far to big for me , it’s ok if you have a laptop bag or a bag with you but the word pocket really does not apply to the ipaqs. even in my baggy jeans i cant store the ipaq comfortable.

    Email works awesome via bluetooth on the T ( better than on the 3975), and the basic features are way easier on the palm,besides I am a Mac user – that ‘s why my ipaq landet on ebay.

    I totally agree with your great review – NO Pda is worth $ 700 , whatever i want from a computer – my Tibook does it – surfing the web , really? who prefers a Pda over a Laptop for that????

    For the basic PDA functions and more ( mp3 is the only thing that i really miss , but lets hope for the realplayer) the Tungsten is everything I ever wanted.

  7. I have to say that I am so tired of buying these devices, and finding that they do half of what they are suppose too. Listening to your review is so disappointing. Like you said $700.00 dollars! At the very lease you want the device to work. I don’t want to pay $700.00 to be a beta tester, and then maybe 4 months down the road they decide to fix the problems (or not). What they should do is fix these devices before they release them to us. I hate to sound a little bitter but I have had a lot of different PDA devices, and I have had problems with too many of them. Between the software and the hardware of these devices, you spend more time trying to get them to work then you do using the things. That last sentence may have been a little exaggerated but you know what I mean.

    I am looking into the new Dell, I hope it’s performance is better then the iPaq 5455, at the very lease it wont cost me $700.00.

    On a happy note, I loved the Psion Series 5 and 7 and my old Casio E115.

    Regards,

    Darren

    http://www.infusionthreads.com

    PDA cases with a purpose

  8. Honestly the 5450 I got a few weeks ago was my first PDA ever. My roommate has a Visor Prism, and I have wanted one ever since. When I first found the info on the new 5400 series, especially the integrated WiFi, I was sold. As soon as it became available I had it ordered on HP’s site. Unfortunatly they ran out of stock and I canceled my order with them and had to place an order with someone else. Finnaly after a week of waiting, it was in my hands. My initial impressions started to falter after about a week of working with it. I have also had problems with the WiFi, at times getting an error message when trying to turn on the WiFi that there is not enough driver memory, which a soft reset will resolve. The biggest dissapointment though was when I tried to setup the device to connect at work, I found the hard way that there is NO integrated 802.1x authentication support. And I now find that there IS with the Toshiba 740. ARGH!

    I can note that over time, my dpad has loosened up a bit, but is still a pain. I can get it to scroll down a webpage just fine, but if I am off ever so slightly to the left or right it will scroll that direction as well.

    One of the coolest things that I can brag about to my friends is that I can go walking around my house, listening to broadband internet radio stations like it was a walkman. All without any add-ons. Its neat! 🙂

    Overall, I would say I am happy with my purchase, however, knowing what I know now, I may not have purchased it in the first place. Might have gone with the Toshiba, specially since it is cheaper, and does support 802.1x authentication so I could connect it to my work’s wireless network. Ah well, hopefully that issue will be resolved with a software update of some sort…

  9. I tend to wonder, do they test these devices in real life environments at all? The reason I say this, is some of the problems that come up are so obvious. If they tested the device you wonder how they could have missed some of these problems. One of my big question is how could you have the alarms ring only once, where your previous version had alarms that were repeating? How many times do you here your alarm go off the first time? But that is what they gave us.

    Regards,

    Darren
    http://www.infusionthreads.com

    PDA cases with a purpose

  10. I’m far from a PPC authority, but having been in the Palm camp for a long time, the new 1910 has made a convert out of me. Despite all the great additional features of the 5455, Toshiba 740, and even the Axim, size has always been an important criteria for me, and the feature set of PPC in an M515 size chasis is too much to pass up. The screen to me is even better than the 5455 (smaller pixels maybe – but even brighter), and it really put the Tungsten I was looking at to shame. I couldn’t justify $200 more for adding bluetooth but losing the replaceable battery and a screen I truly felt was better than the Tungsten.

    I can’t say enough about that screen – it is the first one I’ve ever seen that LOOKS like the picture on the shipping box.

  11. I like your review….honest with explanations.

    You did not mention Windows XP Pro, as working with Terminal Server, which it does.

    I agree with all your cons but you did not add the Dpad which moves down very erradically, or the weak sound output thru external speakers to your final cons. Perhaps you were feeling guilty;-)

    The finger print enrollment is tricky until you realize it is a thermal print, as you pointed out, and press firm enough to cause the dpad to click and works every time for me.

    Mine is a keeper. On the whole, for my specific needs, it still beats my 3800.

  12. Thanks for the detailed review. I was all jazzed about getting one of as my first PocketPC. Now I am in holding pattern, waiting for possibly an update for the 5450, or something new from Toshiba or Fujitsu first.

    One question though, that little white plastic piece under the battery port, next to the connectors for the battery. Is that a removable piece? That definitely looks like a GSM SIM slot to me. And since the o2 XDA is made by the same company that OEM the iPaq, maybe……. 😎

  13. RX78,

    It IS a SIM Slot…If I understand correctly, the 5600 will have an integrated phone…I bet they use the same shell as the 5400, which would explain the microphone placement, the SIM card, and the speaker placement. 2003 should be interesting…

    Judie :0)

  14. Do many ppl in the real world actually listen to 6 hours of mp3 music in one day? I can listen to maybe 1 hour max before my ears start to hurt.

  15. Originally posted by CJS
    Do many ppl in the real world actually listen to 6 hours of mp3 music in one day? I can listen to maybe 1 hour max before my ears start to hurt.

    Perhaps you should turn down the volume? In any event, MP3 playing is usually used as a sort of battery torture-test, to get a ‘real life’ number of what it can do when it’s put to it.

  16. Hi Wraith,

    It ain’t the volume it’s those damn earbuds 😉 For what it’s worth, my MuVo goes for around 15 hours on 1 AAA! Not that I could stand listening to it for that long!!

    I don’t know a lot about the PPC world…do that many ppl use the mp3 feature or is it more gimmicky?

    cheers

  17. Originally posted by CJS
    [B]Hi Wraith,

    It ain’t the volume it’s those damn earbuds 😉 For what it’s worth, my MuVo goes for around 15 hours on 1 AAA! Not that I could stand listening to it for that long!!

    I don’t know a lot about the PPC world…do that many ppl use the mp3 feature or is it more gimmicky?

    cheers [/B]

    I think it depends on personal preference. I don’t own a seperate MP3 player, so I definitely use my PPC for music. Some people might not like carrying such a relatively large device for music, others might take exception to only having a certain amount of music with them. I find a lot of benefit in carrying only one device, even if I’m a little bit limited in capacity sometimes. I’m sure that a PPC won’t replace an iPod, but it seems to suit most people.

  18. Originally posted by CJS
    It ain’t the volume it’s those damn earbuds 😉

    So don’t use earbuds! I use and recommend Sony’s ear-clip design… separate like earbuds and very portable, but bigger around the ears and less awkward/painful. ~$30 in most stores, maybe less online.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled discussion…:)

  19. Originally posted by Judie
    [B]RX78,

    It IS a SIM Slot…If I understand correctly, the 5600 will have an integrated phone…I bet they use the same shell as the 5400, which would explain the microphone placement, the SSIM card, and the speaker placement. 2003 should be interesting…

    Judie :0) [/B]

    The iPaq is bigger than the XDA or the Audiovox Thera. I wouldn’t want to hold it up to my face to talk. Now if the built-in bluetooth supports the headset profile and I can use my Jabra BT200 with it, I’m in. 😀

  20. Today SD cards, while still more expensive than CF, are approaching the level of pricing that makes them attainable to everyone.

    Maybe it’s because I don’t live in the US, but I keep thinking “everyone” doesn’t really mean everyone.

    Of course, I did get a 128MB CF for $50 CAD so what should I be complaining about? (Probably the fact that I have to get a 128MB SD for $90 CAD.)

    Of course, I can’t even get the 39xx in Canada (not easily anyway), never mind the 54xx.

  21. Originally posted by _Q_
    [B]So don’t use earbuds! I use and recommend Sony’s ear-clip design… separate like earbuds and very portable, but bigger around the ears and less awkward/painful. ~$30 in most stores, maybe less online.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled discussion…:) [/B]

    Sorry for skewing off the thread and thanks for the heads-up.

  22. Is it not more accurate to compare the hp H1910 to the Palm Tungsten T? After all both form and function are more alike. Does anyone have any thoughts about which is better? I am finding it hard to decide between the two.

  23. Maybe the 3900 should have been more than a blip on your screen.

    For iPAQ lovers who don’t really need BT, Wifi, or biometrics, the 3950 is it.

    Same beautiful screen, better D-pad. Doesn’t have as much in File Store, but definitely enough to hold your PIM info.

    It arguably looks better as well.

    OT: When did you guys dump all previously registered users? I had been registered since I believe 1999 and just found out I had to register again!

  24. My iPaq 3975 has 22.22 MB of iPaq file store; that is actually a bit more than the 5450 has. It also has the same screen and the same CPU. It seems to me that the only things a 5450 has that a 3975 lacks are the fingerprint recognition, the removable battery and the built in WI-FI. Instead, the 3975 has a better dPad, better sound, a bit less weight and longer battery life. The additional features of the 5450 do not seem worth as much as what is lost.

  25. [B]
    OT: When did you guys dump all previously registered users? I had been registered since I believe 1999 and just found out I had to register again! [/B]

    We didn’t dump the users. We switched to different discussion software and did not import the users as we wanted to start with an empty database.

  26. Originally posted by elcolt
    Is it not more accurate to compare the hp H1910 to the Palm Tungsten T? After all both form and function are more alike. Does anyone have any thoughts about which is better? I am finding it hard to decide between the two.

    As a long time Palm user, and now two week HP 1910 convert, I can heartily recommend the 1910. The ONLY thing the Tungsten has that the 1910 doesn’t is bluetooth. The 1910 screen is bigger and better (brighter, clearer; you won’t notice the resolution difference); use full screen; removable battery; smaller than the fully open Tungsten; MP3 and video already functional; and all for $200 less.

    I just can’t figure what Palm is thinking.

  27. Originally posted by Julie
    We didn’t dump the users. We switched to different discussion software and did not import the users as we wanted to start with an empty database.

    Basically the same thing.

    I’m not upset or anything…I just wondered. If I may ask, why did you want to start with an empty database?

  28. Originally posted by dstrauss
    [B]As a long time Palm user, and now two week HP 1910 convert, I can heartily recommend the 1910. The ONLY thing the Tungsten has that the 1910 doesn’t is bluetooth. The 1910 screen is bigger and better (brighter, clearer; you won’t notice the resolution difference); use full screen; removable battery; smaller than the fully open Tungsten; MP3 and video already functional; and all for $200 less.

    I just can’t figure what Palm is thinking. [/B]

    The Tungsten has SDIO, the Universal Connector, a serial port, and a real headphone jack. MP3 is also functional on the TT.

    The 1910 has no expandability. No Bluetooth, no WiFi, no SDIO, no sleeves, no serial port for phones or GPS.

    If not being instantly obsolete is a consideration, the TT wins hands down, despite the $122 price difference.

    I can’t figure out what HP is thinking.

  29. Wraith, that is very well said.

    IMHO, the iPAQ 1900 is to Pocket PC what the Zire is to Palm. It’s cute, small, fun, great for people with specific needs, but not ideal for a “power user.”

    Judie :0)

  30. I think the biggest problem here was ordering from a company like Mobile Planet. Most people buying high-priced items from companies such as Mobile Planet are not aware of their horrible return policies. I ordered my unit directly from HP for about $80 bucks less and with the safety of their no hassle return policy. Like most of the people, I have not had any major problems with my 5455. I received the Wifi error several times during the first several days of use, but have not encountered it since. The biggest complaint I have so far doesn’t even concern the unit itself, but relates to the poor design of the coverpack – causing wear on the unit (which you guys mentioned in your review).

  31. Paul,

    You have a good point about company return policies. Believe me, I would have/should have ordered from HP, but Mobile Planet got the 5455 into my hands sooner than HP would have.

    It’s okay though – because I am not ready to give up on the 5455 yet. I am going to send my unit in to HP. I BET they will fix it to my satisfaction. If they can get the fingerprint reader to work consistantly and make the dead pixel disappear, which are two of my biggest beefs, then I would use the 5455 everyday.

    I LOVE having the built in WiFi, and I look forward to being at a Starbucks, or some other similarly wired place, and being able to surf while I take it easy. It is also nice to be able to sit outside on my swing and surf. I am looking forward to spring and being able to carry on IM conversations and answer e-mail while I enjoy being outside…in fact, I might have to pick up an extended battery just for that.

    Judie :0)

  32. Nice review ladies,
    Once again you confirmed my fears of switching to PPC. I think once a newer version of PPC software is released to work with the X-scale processors I will take another look!

  33. But, Judie and Wraith, is it really possible to be a “power user” with a Palm TT? It has only 14MB of useable memory unless I add a card, which I can also do with the 1910.
    And Wraith where did you order your Palm TT from if it only cost you $421 (299+122)?
    And finally, does anyone know when an SDIO device is coming out?

  34. Thanks for the review: too bad I read it the day after I bought my
    iPaq 5455. However, I have some good news to add about
    the joypad problem!

    I tried several 5455s at the store (COMPUSA) and found all
    the joypads to not work in any useful way. However, on
    one unit the pad wouldn’t respond in the up and right
    directions while on another it was the up and down only that did
    not respond. This led me to believe that many it was some
    kind of seating or break-in issue (which might explain how
    HP could have released these in the first place – perhaps
    a problem that only appeared during some post trial mass
    production run.) Anyway, to get the integrated WiFi I threw
    caution to the wind and bought it.

    Once I had it at home I discovered mine to get quite bad with
    useless with no up or down clicking possible. So I tried my
    break-in/seating theory. I “leaned into” the button – pushing
    it with great might into the up and down positions, over and
    over again, working it around and to the sides of up and down
    as well. When I was done, I found that I NOW had useful
    control of up and down cursor movement!!!!

    Having used it in this condition now for a few days I still don’t
    particularly like the small button design, it is fussy because of
    its size. However, I no longer see a pathalogical problem with
    the switch, just an ergonomic one.

    As I’ve been on Holidy Break, I’ve not had a chance to try
    the WiFi on my business network. I will let you know how
    that goes.

  35. Wraith and Judie:

    I don’t see how either the HP or Tungsten are ideal for the power user. In fact, having used Palm OS PDA’s since the original Palm Pro (I was even one of the “nuts” that tried to use the Motorola add in for paging) I can’t see how any Palm PDA is a power user option. That would have to be reserved for CF enabled PDA’s in order to make use of power user options such as Power Point presentations, GPS, networking, etc. The addition of bluetooth is by no means a wireless solution – if that’s where your headed, then wouldn’t the HP 5400 series or Toshiba be better with integrated WiFi?

    And I don’t know where you found them so cheaply, but I haven’t seen a Tungsten retailing for less than $499. If we’re comparing discounted prices, then there’s still a $200 difference (everyone recently has had $50 mail in rebates on all PDA’s – Staples; Best Buy; etc.).

    I’m not advocating the H1910 as the end all or be all PDA, but it is far from a cute toy. Those who trumpeted the Palm Vx, M500 and original iPaq’s as true business solutions have nothing over the 1910. I just think there is a significant segment out there that want a truly pocketable PDA with a feature set that doesn’t require Blackberry constant connectivity. Some day (hopefully sooner than later) you’ll be able to use WiFi similar to cellular service in many urban locations. Then instant connectivity makes sense. But if I’m working around the office or at home, the wireless expererience is much better on a small/mini notebook than any PDA.

  36. dstrauss and elcott,

    To clarify: While I did call the 1900 “cute” (which it is), I never called it a “toy.”

    I also didn’t specify the Tungsten as a Power User ‘s device. I just said that the 1900 wasn’t one.

    I am not trying to pick on any particular PDA, but if you asked me to designate one as being specifically for a Power User, I would definitely have to go with the 5400. if for no other reason than for the integrated wireless, bluetooth, and expansion capabilities from there. That’s why I am trying to get my 5455 to work to my satisfaction – it would be ideal if it would do what it was supposed to.

    A search of Pricegrabber shows the T for $418: http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_getprod.php/masterid=649866/search=tungsten%2520t/ut=0440e372c7edf6ae

    Thanks for keeping the conversation going!
    Judie :0)

  37. I would agree totally that the 5455 would be the power user unit, particularly if you get the extended battery.

    Sorry for the “toy” comment – but unfortunately to many folks cute and toy tend to be the same. As for the price quote, the problem is you can’t seem to get the 1910 anywhere right now – and reading comments on Brighthand, PDABuzz, PocketPCPassion, etc. seems to indicate that more than a few experienced PDA users are making the switch – it is not just an entry level PDA.

    I’m afraid I’m beginning to sound too much like one of those zealots defending their latest platform decisions, so another apology is due. However, in six years of using PDA’s, I’ve never found one that comes so close to meeting a lot of objectives. Until battery technology makes a revolutionay breakthrough, I doubt we’ll ever see effective wireless in a unit this small (I’d wager that even with replaceable batteries, and assuming you could get the circuitry and antennae to fit in this tiny box, you’d need 3-4 batteries to get through a heavy day).

    Keep up the good work – no one puts out a better, unbiased review of products than The-Gadgeteer. 🙂

  38. Originally posted by elcolt
    [B]But, Judie and Wraith, is it really possible to be a “power user” with a Palm TT? It has only 14MB of useable memory unless I add a card, which I can also do with the 1910.

    To a certain extent it depends on what you mean by ‘power user’. The average person isn’t going to use SDIO, Bluetooth, etcetera… In that sense it is for users who want power features. I believe the TT is mainly targeted at the upper-middle range users, particularly business users, who want ‘high-end’ without integrated WiFi or a CF slot.

    And Wraith where did you order your Palm TT from if it only cost you $421 (299+122)?

    Disclaimer: I do not own a Tungsten T. All my knowledge of it is from specs, discussion, and review’s like J&J’s.

    That said, US $422 is the lowest price I found doing a quick scan. As you probably noticed, Judie posted a price of US $418. Guess I’ll have to check out PriceGrabber.

    And finally, does anyone know when an SDIO device is coming out?

    I’m not sure what you mean by ‘SDIO device’. Many handhelds already support it–the entire m5XX series of Palms including the TT, the iPaq 39XX and 54XX series, Toshiba e series, some Treos, others.

    If you mean cards, Bluetooth, camera, and video-out cards are available now, and WiFi cards are coming early this year.

  39. Originally posted by dstrauss
    [B]I would agree totally that the 5455 would be the power user unit, particularly if you get the extended battery.

    Sorry for the “toy” comment – but unfortunately to many folks cute and toy tend to be the same. As for the price quote, the problem is you can’t seem to get the 1910 anywhere right now – and reading comments on Brighthand, PDABuzz, PocketPCPassion, etc. seems to indicate that more than a few experienced PDA users are making the switch – it is not just an entry level PDA.[/B]

    There were quite a few problems plaguing this PDA, like the SDIO/2.5mm headphone/no sleeve expansion/only 48MB because of the flash/only PPC advanced issue, but a lot of people flocked to the m505 when it first came out as well, and it had that really annoying weak backlight issue. I think people tend to overlook the bad to get the features they want.

    [B]

    I’m afraid I’m beginning to sound too much like one of those zealots defending their latest platform decisions, so another apology is due. [/B]

    I think everybody has some “zealotry” every now and then, and as long as they don’t become boneheads it’s quite alright.

    [B]However, in six years of using PDA’s, I’ve never found one that comes so close to meeting a lot of objectives. Until battery technology makes a revolutionay breakthrough, I doubt we’ll ever see effective wireless in a unit this small (I’d wager that even with replaceable batteries, and assuming you could get the circuitry and antennae to fit in this tiny box, you’d need 3-4 batteries to get through a heavy day).

    Keep up the good work – no one puts out a better, unbiased review of products than The-Gadgeteer. 🙂 [/B]

    The size of the Dell’s battery, however, keeps me happy.

    And don’t discount wireless either. The e740 has only 1000mAh of battery (of course that is twice the size of camera batteries!)

  40. I have a Ipaq 5455 and am beginning to enjoy it. But this is the 2nd one. The first Ipaq 5455 I picked up from CompUSA had all kinds of trouble. Just like the problems you were describing. But I think was due to the fact it may have been a demo placed back into the box. The external battery was already on. When I took the Ipaq back they replace it for free because I was in the 14-day return period. The 2nd one seems to work great.

    As a side note make sure you take the wireless control out of memory before you try to sync the Ipaq in the cradle. You will run into all kinds of problems if you do not.

    As far as the battery life is concerned I believe once HP recognizes the problem they will release a RomPaq to resolve the issues.

    🙂

  41. Thanks for the wonderful review. As to the dead pixel issue, I had the same problem with my iPAQ 3955. I had to exchange it no less than 6 times before I got one with a perfect screen, which is, IMHO, totally ridiculous. HP was no help either. In their email response, they stated that this is just the way the technology works, and that with reflective TFT displays, you always find some pixels in the on/off position.

    This is a load of @#$(@*#$!

    If these were TVs this wouldn’t even be an issue, but when you pay over $500 for a PDA, it shouldn’t have any dead pixels, period. HP told me my only option was to exchange my 3955 for a new one- they would not repair it.

    For me however, the 3955 is the first iPAQ I’ve ever owned, and my second Pocket PC. It is a very stable machine (for the most part), and the screen and decent battery life are definite pluses. The 3900 series iPAQs may not do everything, but what they do, they do well.

    Just my two cents. Thanks again for a wonderful review!

  42. Originally posted by dstrauss
    [B]As a long time Palm user, and now two week HP 1910 convert, I can heartily recommend the 1910. The ONLY thing the Tungsten has that the 1910 doesn’t is bluetooth. The 1910 screen is bigger and better (brighter, clearer; you won’t notice the resolution difference); use full screen; removable battery; smaller than the fully open Tungsten; MP3 and video already functional; and all for $200 less.

    I just can’t figure what Palm is thinking. [/B]

    I agree the 1910 is nice. Careful though the first time the battery dies and you wake up to a dead device and/or the first time ‘dis’ActiveSync no longer recognizes the unit. For me it happened TWO DAYS after I bought my e330. Happily back to my trusty and bulletproof SJ30 ever since. I will never go back until MS gets their AS act together. Tis a shame too because the hardware folks finally have things right now.

    Mike

  43. Originally posted by Julie
    We didn’t dump the users. We switched to different discussion software and did not import the users as we wanted to start with an empty database.

    Ooh, not good IMO.

    Mike

  44. Originally posted by dstrauss
    In fact, having used Palm OS PDA’s since the original Palm Pro (I was even one of the “nuts” that tried to use the Motorola add in for paging) I can’t see how any Palm PDA is a power user option.

    Originally posted by Judie
    [B]I also didn’t specify the Tungsten as a Power User ‘s device. I just said that the 1900 wasn’t one.
    [/B]

    When did having wireless become a prerequisite for being a power user?

    I edit spreadsheets, documents, and images, program, and do database work on my handheld. Why should I not be called a power user? The HP1910 with an SD card can do all that. So can several PalmOS devices (in fact dstrauss, PalmOS does some of those things better than PPC). If you have a specific need for wireless or multimedia on your handheld, then get one appropriately equipped. But in general neither multimedia nor wireless differentiate power user devices and entry level devices. Os is there a user classification between games/PIM user and wireless user that I’m unaware of?

    The real limitations at this point with most handhelds are the screen and input methods. My old T665’s 2.3″ 320×320 screen and my HP1910’s 3.5″ 320×240 screen are just too small and don’t have enough pixels to do most serious tasks. Without an external keyboard, using PalmOS and PPC devices to input large amounts of data is tedious.

    P.S.: I’m no stranger to wireless. have an 802.11b home network… but when I want to get online, I’d rather use my 2.7 pound Sony Vaio SRX99 XGA notebook than a handheld.

  45. Deslock:

    I agree with everything you’ve said (including acknowledging that WordSmith is a much better Word compatible editor than Pocket Word).

    That said, what your post points out is my biggest problem with “power user” vs. all others – a PDA is rarely more than an extension or adjunct to a good notebook. It is a portable databank to carry with you. Once you add extended batteries, keyboards, multiple IO cards (wireless, wired network, modem) etc., a small notebook becomes a better solution. Granted, the 5400 series and Toshiba 740 come closer with more built in connectivity, but then you’re back to the problem of the microscopic screen – even the 3.8″ iPaq can’t render html pages well enough for long term viewing.

    There is no holy grail, and not likely to be one (caveat – maybe a heads up display could cure a lot of these problems – seem to remember a prototype eye reader that gave you the illusion of a full size 640×480 screen some years ago). Power drain; access to wireless points; screen resolution; screen real estate; all cut against being a computer replacement.

    There is no doubt that PDA’s have come a long way, and for selected segments (like network analysis, or very tenacious users) they can fulfill your day long needs. They are, as a group, much more powerful than anything I typed on 10-15 years ago (they put my 8 lb, two floppy drive Toshiba notebook, with unreadable non-backlit LCD screen to shame). However, I prefer to keep my PIM and some light entertainment in my pocket, and leave the heavy stuff to my 4 lb Toshiba notebook (although 2.7 lb is even better).;)

  46. Reggatta Mondatta

    Well, I couldn’t resist. I TAPed my Pocket PC Phone to CompUSA for a hp iPAQ 5455 and also snagged a T68i at a great price. I got lucky on the differential between what I paid for the Pocket PC Phone and what CompUSA credited me so that my actual cost for both the 5455 and T68i was less than the going price for a 5455 😀 .

    Now that I found a version of Perl for the Pocket PC, the memory limitation of the Pocket PC Phone would become more of an issue. Also, my intended use of a Pocket PC can utilize both WiFi and Bluetooth, so we shall see…

    A quick question for Judie/Julie: what version of Outlook came with your 5455? Your review stated Outlook XP. Is that correct? My unit included Outlook 2000 rather than XP (2002).

    Will keep you posted on my experiences.

    Regards,

    RM

  47. Originally posted by dstrauss
    [B]Deslock:

    I agree with everything you’ve said (including acknowledging that WordSmith is a much better Word compatible editor than Pocket Word).

    That said, what your post points out is my biggest problem with “power user” vs. all others – a PDA is rarely more than an extension or adjunct to a good notebook. It is a portable databank to carry with you. Once you add extended batteries, keyboards, multiple IO cards (wireless, wired network, modem) etc., a small notebook becomes a better solution. Granted, the 5400 series and Toshiba 740 come closer with more built in connectivity, but then you’re back to the problem of the microscopic screen – even the 3.8″ iPaq can’t render html pages well enough for long term viewing.

    There is no holy grail, and not likely to be one (caveat – maybe a heads up display could cure a lot of these problems – seem to remember a prototype eye reader that gave you the illusion of a full size 640×480 screen some years ago). Power drain; access to wireless points; screen resolution; screen real estate; all cut against being a computer replacement.

    There is no doubt that PDA’s have come a long way, and for selected segments (like network analysis, or very tenacious users) they can fulfill your day long needs. They are, as a group, much more powerful than anything I typed on 10-15 years ago (they put my 8 lb, two floppy drive Toshiba notebook, with unreadable non-backlit LCD screen to shame). However, I prefer to keep my PIM and some light entertainment in my pocket, and leave the heavy stuff to my 4 lb Toshiba notebook (although 2.7 lb is even better).;) [/B]

    I agree with you distrauss for the most part. I want a pda as an extension of my computer. I have read alot of articles about making your pda into a laptop , stop carrying the weight etc…. What I found was no matter what handheld I had PPC or Palm I still couldn’t get it to run fast enough , have better battery life(AC),surf the web better or anything then what my laptop can do today. I decided with all the money I spend on pdas and accessories I still couldn’t get my pda to do what I wanted it to do. I took the plunge and broke down for a laptop and installed a home network for Christmas. I have everthing I need now for surfing, word docs , emails etc. Did I get ride of my Palm ? No way!! I used it to much for contacts, todos and datebook. Wasn’t that where they devices started from using them for PIM? Everything else is just nice extras IMHO.
    As far as ” Power users “are concerned it makes me laugh to read these posts about what unit works for a power user and which ones don’t. I business man might use his palm for contacts and calendar all day long in and out of his pocket and you think because he isn’t surfing the web , using word docs , has a 256 mb sd card with databases etc, that he isn’t a power user? Everybody has a different view on a power user. I think a power user is better determined by hours of use on a pda over what that person uses his pda for. Maybe they should install hour meters like some power equipment and cell phones. Isn’t that a good way to determine how long one person is on a phone over another? I think either device Palm or PPC could be used for power using it just depends on what that person is doing.
    Now can we have a big group huge!!!!:love:

  48. Originally posted by Matt
    I think a power user is better determined by hours of use on a pda over what that person uses his pda for. Maybe they should install hour meters like some power equipment and cell phones.

    Maybe you should copyright that quote. I guess a power user can mean more than one thing, and I like your thought on this. In all honesty, if you do get more hours use out of the device, that is a good benchmark of a power user. However, as commonly used on boards like this one, it comes to mean someone who wants the computer to do a dozen different things at one time, and slice the bread. 😀

  49. Matt,

    I like your definitition, too. Generally, when I think of a power user, I am thinking of someone to whom the PDA has become an extension of their hand and brain. They would be lost without it, and they are constantly integrating it into their everyday life – in whatever ways that might entail.

    It was catty of me to say that the 1900 isn’t a “power” device, so I am publicly taking it back. 😮

    In any case – if you want a “fun” read, you can check out this thread at Pocket PC Thoughts. Eveidently Julie and I don’t even qualify as power users, so what hope is there for anyone else? 😉

    http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=55326&PHPSESSID=0e8b83d2d7886fe62a85d66951309b3e

    Judie :0)

  50. Judie,

    Thanks for the read, didn’t get threw it all but I couldn’t believe how many times your name and Julies name where thrown around. I guess there will be critics with every review. Thats part of the risk of sticking your neck out giving your opinion.;)

  51. Actually, more than anything, I thought it was funny how upset people were because we didn’t agree with their opinions.

    If Julie and I had agreed with everything our “critics” belive, then we would have been hailed as the second coming.

    Anyway, it looks like quite a few people still managed to get what we were saying: I want biometrics, I want WiFi, Bluetooth isn’t too big of a deal for me, my joy-pad sucks, and if the 5455 would have done what I wanted it to do, then the $700 would not even be a blip on my radar. Since it didn’t work as I expected it to, I resented not being able to return it. If it gets fixed to my satisfaction – then I would be thrilled to make it my daily driver.

    btw, I don’t know who Kati42 is, but she is a sweetie for standing up to all those naysayers in Julie’s and my defense. YOU GO GIRL!

    Still hoping for a Rom-patch…

    Judie :0)

  52. Eeeek!!!

    Its worse than I thought. I’m glad I waited. Thanks for the awesome review!!

    I too will wait until a ROM patch is available, and will most likely wait until it is incorporated into the main ROM before making a purchase… boy am I disappointed.

    Christopher Spera

  53. Originally posted by dstrauss
    Maybe you should copyright that quote. I guess a power user can mean more than one thing, and I like your thought on this. In all honesty, if you do get more hours use out of the device, that is a good benchmark of a power user. However, as commonly used on boards like this one, it comes to mean someone who wants the computer to do a dozen different things at one time, and slice the bread. 😀

    Thanks for your support

  54. Ladies Thank you for your comments, I have been a gadet guy my whole life and visit your site numerious times a week, and have found all your comments “right on”

    I am a power user, an NP and use my PDA almost every 1/2 hr. Use both the NR70 and a 3765 (with modifications by times 2). starting with a handspring prism.

    The numerious medical references I use daily do better in the CE format.

    Now to my point. I was hoping (as you) and waited for (as you)
    the 5400, after your review (and these comments) provided great background for my upgrade consideration. The bluetooth wanted, the battery wanted, screen wanted. Why only a single charger ! , and I just dont see a need for a finger print scanner
    (although it is like way cool). I too would like to surf while sucking down large amounts of cafeine.

    It does not appear the this release will be my savior, I will agree
    that for a useful business or feference tool I would shell out 700 clams in a second.

    Sorry I missed you ladies at comdex I had to catch a flight

    keep up your excellent work, I hope the R&D guys at HP read the stuff from us users

    Laurence

  55. Reading your review (thanks for writing it) makes me more convinced of the saying “small is beautiful”.

    After working with Palm Pilot, Palm III, Palm V, I loved my new Compac iPaq 3600. Great screen, great compatibilty with my Windows computer.
    But … in real life too bulky to carry it around in my pocket.

    And I found out … I hardly ever use Pocket-Word, Pocket-Excel.

    In my real life it comes down to only two things:
    – the calendar
    – the contacts

    So now I (and the others on my department) have switched to Sony Clie on Palm OS. Great screen, very light and small device. Good calendar … even better with Datebk5 installed.

    Yeah, small can be more in the end ….;)

  56. Thanks for the review, ladies!

    I guess I will be keeping my Ipaq 3835. I really don’t see any advantage to this or any of the alternatives.

    Does not look like any real advances have yet been made – not even by HP/Compaq!!

  57. Originally posted by Ronald_L
    [B]Reading your review (thanks for writing it) makes me more convinced of the saying “small is beautiful”.

    After working with Palm Pilot, Palm III, Palm V, I loved my new Compac iPaq 3600. Great screen, great compatibilty with my Windows computer.
    But … in real life too bulky to carry it around in my pocket.

    And I found out … I hardly ever use Pocket-Word, Pocket-Excel.

    In my real life it comes down to only two things:
    – the calendar
    – the contacts

    So now I (and the others on my department) have switched to Sony Clie on Palm OS. Great screen, very light and small device. Good calendar … even better with Datebk5 installed.

    Yeah, small can be more in the end ….;) [/B]

    I agree totally (even though I do use Pocket Excel and Pocket Word). Having quick access to what I need has become more important than features rarely used. Besides, outside of wireless and GPS, I’ve found that the little 1910 can handle what I throw at it quite well (PIM, spreadsheets, MP3, light multimedia).:D

  58. this really isnt important but in reading a third of ur review and seeing it a couple of times i feel like i want to reply …

    to me, “daily driver” is the boring car.

    “garage queen” or “weekend car” is the hot car.

    obviously it seems to have been reveresed meaning by the pda crowd but maybe it isnt to late to capture the original meaning

  59. magmasilk,

    If it were a Porsche, it would be my Sunday Driver…

    but since we are talking about PDAs, I call the one that I reach for every time, the one that I never leave home without, the one that I would be lost without, my “daily driver.” Make sense? 😉

    Judie :0)

  60. So here is my deal, not really looking for an answer, just need to vent… 🙁

    I bought a Palm Tungsten T just a few weeks ago, and soon after bought a 256 SD Card… Well yesterday I got and installed this new SD card, well to my severe disapointment hotsyncing anything on to that card was DREADFULLY slow, so slow that I have decided to put it up on ebay.

    So today I discover the 5450, and I order it…. and now I’m dreading it’s arrival… I’ve gone through many different PDAs, but I buy them more for gadget appeal than usability, which is my own flaw… but it’s a flaw that doesn’t appear to be going away any time soon, despite the fact that I by all means need a new car before a $700 PDA!! LOL

    Anyone have any comments to sooth my buyers remorse!? 🙂

    Adam

  61. ossian,
    I know what you mean about buyers remorse. I have bought more then more pda and before it arrived wonder if i did the right thing? I always have all these questions floating in my head. Did I get the right one? Do I really need an expensive unit with all the bells and whistles? Should I have bought a different unit? etc… etc…. 700 is to rich for my blood. Wow!!

  62. Originally posted by ossian
    I bought a Palm Tungsten T just a few weeks ago, and soon after bought a 256 SD Card… Well yesterday I got and installed this new SD card, well to my severe disapointment hotsyncing anything on to that card was DREADFULLY slow, so slow that I have decided to put it up on ebay.

    What brand SD card did you buy? Sandisk cards are known to be dog slow… could that be the prob?

  63. oh dear… it is a san disk card…. let me guess, they are just as slow in an ipaq??? yikes now i don’t know what to do….

    *sigh*

    LOL I Just received shipping confirmation on the Ipaq…

  64. Guys we have all had these feelings,

    I have purshased all my pda’s at a a major computer chain, because they have a 2 week give it back policy. I also buy the return package. This has replaced two broken PDA’s with a new model (crediting the dollor amount of the old model) at the same price.

    Mail order is great but you can loose on it to. My plan is to buy the 5400 in a couple of months hopfully the price will drop a hundred or so.

  65. Originally posted by Matt
    Buy a Lexmark or other brand and try it.

    I don’t think buying a printer will have much bearing on it. 😉

    Seriously, though, buying a Lexar or other brand may make a difference…

  66. Originally posted by _Q_
    [B]I don’t think buying a printer will have much bearing on it. 😉

    Seriously, though, buying a Lexar or other brand may make a difference… [/B]

    lexar, Lexmark, can you tell I have computers on the brain alittle to much!!:o

  67. Are the 128 MB SanDisk cards also very slow or is it just at the 256MB level? I am not sure my outlet has Lexar cards but if you are all warning against the SanDisk brand I will wait.

  68. I switched from a Tungsten T to the Ipaq 5455. Here is why:

    1) Larger, brighter screen. Sure the resolution is lower than the TT but that screen is just awesome…the best I have seen other than the Sony NX. No dead pixels here! TFT is the way to go and Im sure that Palm will figure it out eventually.

    2) Tired of Palm – the audio is terrible, the real player is way late and I love my Mp3s. After downloading withMp3 and looking at the feature set compared to Palm OS offerings, there is no comparison. The Ipaqs audio is fantastic and withMp3, its even better.

    3) The TT is a good start for Palm. I had mine for 5 weeks and enjoyed it..until I noticed dust starting to show its ugly head in the lower right hand corner, the slider loosened, and it started locking up with certain programs. These issues surely will be addressed in the next release…you know a year fom now.

    4) I am a true gadgeteer and the 5455 has all the bells and whistles that I want. I havent experienced any of the problems that you mentioned in your review yet so I have my fingers crossed.

    I guess the negativity in your review is based on the price and previous experience with Ipaqs. This is my first PPC since the Phillips Nino so I really have nothing to compare it to. The price wasnt that big of deal for me but it may be for some. Ahh, the price you pay to have the top of the line…lol

    By the way, the dpad is better on my unit than you mentioned in your review and the fingerprint recognition works 100% of the time. I guess I was either lucky or you werent so lucky.

    Take care!

    By the way, the 256MB Sandisk cards do not work well with the TT. The Lexar 128 and 256 works flawlessly. Im not sure about the 128 Sandisk.

  69. Originally posted by kstedman
    I switched from a Tungsten T to the Ipaq 5455. Here is why:

    1) Larger, brighter screen. Sure the resolution is lower than the TT but that screen is just awesome…the best I have seen other than the Sony NX. No dead pixels here! TFT is the way to go and Im sure that Palm will figure it out eventually.

    All Palm screens are TFT. You may be thinking of transflective screens.

  70. Originally posted by TheWraith
    All Palm screens are TFT. You may be thinking of transflective screens.

    Your right on the screen all Palms are TFT. I hope you enjoy your 5455 but a few things about the palm. Any unit can starting having dust problems.Any unit can start locking up due to software problems, defects etc..

  71. Originally posted by TheWraith
    All Palm screens are TFT. You may be thinking of transflective screens.

    Your absolutely right. I was confused on the defination. My bad.

    To Matt. Transflective screens dont have the dust issues that reflective screens do. In addition, if I am going to pay $500 for a palm device, you would think it would be more stable than its predecessors.

    (typing this in my bedroom via Bluetooth connection to my PC) 😉

  72. Originally posted by kstedman
    [B]Your absolutely right. I was confused on the defination. My bad.

    To Matt. Transflective screens dont have the dust issues that reflective screens do. In addition, if I am going to pay $500 for a palm device, you would think it would be more stable than its predecessors.

    (typing this in my bedroom via Bluetooth connection to my PC) 😉 [/B]

    Everybody has there own style. I don’t want to start a Palm vs PPC war. I just still perfer the Palm interface. I thought the 1910 might change my mind but stll like the size and features of the TT.I think that is the way I am leaning right now unless the Garmin changes things.:wow:

  73. Yeah That Garmin unit is pretty impressive. Although, the reason it has the higher resolution screen is because of the detail needed for the GPS mapping. I would like to see the battery life on this unit because with the very high resolution screen and with the integrated GPS, it may not be all that great.

    Im using the 5455 so I guess I should not be judging battery life…LOL. Although, its not as bad as I expected.

  74. I have recently purchased an iPAQ 5450 and compared to the 3950 I have here I am very disappointed in two ways. (1) The screen of the 5450 is not as bright as the 3950. Both turned up full the 5450 appears dimmer than the 3950. (2) Most importantly, the screen of the 3950 (and 3800 series) appear to be “tighter” to the unit than the screen of the 5450. The screen of the 5450 (and 1910 for that matter) feels softer or more cushy. The result is that I find a more accurate reponse to the touch of the stylus with the 3950. I get many more “stutters” or “repeats” with the 5450. When trying to use the keyboard gestures for space, caps, backspace, etc I get many more unwanted letters with the 5450. I have read so much about the great screen of the 5450 I am wondering if I have a bad unit or if I need to simply get used to it. Any thoughts?

  75. I dont know how the screen could be any brighter. Its ctually brighter than the monitor than I am looking at right now.

    The 5455 screen is not a “cushy” as the tungsten so I believe that its fine and the stylus response has been fine as well.

    Remember that I dont have a 3900 series to compare it to though.

  76. I am a Palm 515 user and was considering switching to the Pocket PC OS. I was particulalry interested in the WiFi feature of the Pocket PC, and was looking forward to the 5455/5450 and its built in Bluetooth/WiFi with great eagerness. I scoured the web looking for a complete, comprehensive review that was not a marketing pitch. Yours was the first. Thanks for taking the time to illuninate others with a fair and impartial commentary. I learned what I needed to learn from the review, and will be sticking with my 515 for a while longer. It’s nice not to have to spend the $699.00 to find out what you have already learned and shared.

    Thanks!

    Mike

  77. The “out of memory” problem does have a partial work around. It has something to do with sleeve driver competing for resource.

    Somehwere in this thread, relating to DM_k.exe
    http://discussion.brighthand.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=69780&perpage=15&pagenumber=5

    Various battery performance comment.
    http://discussion.brighthand.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=69976

    The DM_k.exe work around and the availability of clock utility are two of the biggest item addressing what the review noted.

    Software and patch are released quicker in PPC, also usually Compaq post patch and update every 2-3 months.

  78. OK…new problem…I switched from an HP Jornada 568, which I loved but which was discontinued, to the new IPAQ 5455 which is sleek and kinda neat…

    BUT…within the first three days, my IPAQ totally reset itself (did a hard reboot) all on it’s own three times…the first time was annoying and taught me all about the backup function…the second time was ridiculous. The third time was the return warning.

    I had no problem at CompUSA returning it and getting a new one…and so far so good (1 week later)…

    Anyone else have this problem?

  79. I can’t believe all the problems this new 5455 has had . wow! I guess its like all new pdas they have to work the bugs out but this pda is taking forever!!:(

  80. Thanks for the informative review of the 5455. While I am a Palm user soon to be a Pocket PC junkie, I was a bit disappointed with the apparent bugs found in the flagship 5455. I even purchased the Sony Ericsson T68i Bluetooth phone so that I could use it with the 5455 as a “2-box solution”. Now, I may wait until the anticipated 5600 series HP iPAQS debut.
    My main criteria are high-res screen, high quality and reliability, and of course, Bluetooth functionality.
    Thanks again! Please give the 56xx units your through review as well.

  81. Originally posted by stevelink
    My main criteria are high-res screen, high quality and reliability, and of course, Bluetooth functionality.

    Considered the Tungsten T?

  82. Interesting thought. Actually, I had not really considered it or any Palm device, only because I’ve been a Palm (Handspring) user for the last 4 years, and thought I was ready to move to the Pocket PC world after seeing the gorgeous screen of the HP iPAQ.
    Thanks for thte idea though… after reading about the 5455’s bugs, I may just check it out.
    🙂

  83. “Beware of BAD Pixels” zRonster on 10-Feb-2003 09:12:52 am
    If you do purchase the iPaq 5455 make sure to inspect your display closely!! I am packing up my SECOND UNIT for return to the retailer. It pains me to write this but it looks like HP is missing a possible Quality Issue with these units. I purchased my first unit about one week ago. With much anticipation, I got it home and unpacked it and fired it up. I will admit that it is truly a powerful and feature rich unit. All the features that I did get a chance to check out, did work well but I discovered that there was a pixel out in the upper right portion of the screen (shows up as a constant blue dot). I simply considered it a matter of bad luck and returned it. I exchanged it for my second unit and believe it or not this unit has a bad pixel also (center left portion of the screen, constant red dot). I simply cannot accept a brand new $700.00 PDA with a screen defect. I called HP support and explained to HP that this was my second unit and perhaps there was an issue they should look into. The support person simply suggested that I return it, he told me that it might be the handling of the units during shipping….. yep that is what I was told. They continued to explain that they had very few calls about this problem and that my next one should be in better condition. I purchased the HP 545 Jornada PDA just prior to HP announcing that the Jornada could not provide the screen resolution that it was first advertised at (some may remember that CLUSTER FUDGE). I think that perhaps HP is lacking in adequate Quality Inspection on their products. I’ll say it again, if you do purchase the iPaq 5455 make sure to inspect your display closely!!

  84. Originally posted by zronster
    [B]”Beware of BAD Pixels” zRonster on 10-Feb-2003 09:12:52 am
    If you do purchase the iPaq 5455 make sure to inspect your display closely!! I am packing up my SECOND UNIT for return to the retailer. It pains me to write this but it looks like HP is missing a possible Quality Issue with these units. I purchased my first unit about one week ago. With much anticipation, I got it home and unpacked it and fired it up. I will admit that it is truly a powerful and feature rich unit. All the features that I did get a chance to check out, did work well but I discovered that there was a pixel out in the upper right portion of the screen (shows up as a constant blue dot). I simply considered it a matter of bad luck and returned it. I exchanged it for my second unit and believe it or not this unit has a bad pixel also (center left portion of the screen, constant red dot). I simply cannot accept a brand new $700.00 PDA with a screen defect. I called HP support and explained to HP that this was my second unit and perhaps there was an issue they should look into. The support person simply suggested that I return it, he told me that it might be the handling of the units during shipping….. yep that is what I was told. They continued to explain that they had very few calls about this problem and that my next one should be in better condition. I purchased the HP 545 Jornada PDA just prior to HP announcing that the Jornada could not provide the screen resolution that it was first advertised at (some may remember that CLUSTER FUDGE). I think that perhaps HP is lacking in adequate Quality Inspection on their products. I’ll say it again, if you do purchase the iPaq 5455 make sure to inspect your display closely!! [/B]

    This is good to know thanks.I would like to try out the 5455 but the TT is more in my price range.

  85. 😎 OK…Now that I have had my second unit 5455 (after returning the first, see above) I am happy to report no further problems…no pixel problems, no sudden resets, and otherwise fine functioning. I use it daily with both my home and work LAN networks and it works perfectly. I even went ahead and, having decided to now keep it, order the new slipper case for it, and it fits like a glove now.

    One other note I have heard tell: if you use your 5455 with velcro attatched to the back, apparently there have been battery faults when you pull your unit away from the velcro case causing odd resets and unreliable performance. THat is also why I did not get a standard case but opted for the Slipper so that I wouldn’t have yet another problem to worry about.

    I just wanted to update my original gripes as I am quite happy with the unit. Apparently, there is a tremendous Quality Control problem with HP, because I had constant problems with my Jornada 568 as well prior to the IPAQ 5455.

    I got the same runaround about “just returning the unit” when I called to complain about the sudden hard re-sets on my first unit — that must be their apparent Customer Service reply when they don’t know what to do.

    Still — I am quite happy with my 5455, now that I have a functional unit, and recommend it (but make sure you check and double check everything on your unit when you first buy it).

  86. Thanks for all the info on the 5455 and upcoming 5600 series iPAQs. At this point, since I don’t have need for the WIFI capabilities of the 5455, but am interested mainly in the high-res screen and Bluetooth functionality, I may just wait for the 5600 series.
    Good luck with your awesome 5455!

  87. I purchased my 5455 at CompUSA. The first unit failed within a week and they returned it for another one, no questions asked.

  88. HI, Judie and Julie.
    As a former Palm devotee, I decided to bite the bullet and go with the flagship HP iPAQ 5455, despite some issues I read in your review. Being into digital imaging, the “Awesome display” negated most of your concerns about WIFI, stability, etc., since I will really only use Bluetooth consistently (with my T68i), but prefer the removable battery option to the Bluetooth-only 3975.
    In any case, I got the 2-year extended warranty from the retailer, should anything go seriously wrong with the unit.
    It is comforting to see that you’re bringing the 5455 along to Scotland! Having declared your intentions to travel light, this says something about the 5455’s utility and functionality.
    In any case, have fun on your venture!
    Steve
    sas.mba@verizon.net :wow:

  89. Steve,

    There are a great many wonderful things that can be said about the 5455 – and as I pointed out in my travel plans, its versitality is a major PLUS.

    Judie :0)

  90. Judie, thanks for the Post Puchase Reinforcement! After reading the superb review on your site as well as others, I had my trepidations about the 5455. However, I decided that playing the “waiting game” would not serve me, since who knows the validity of all the rumors of upcoming devices? What I do know is that the 5455 has a gorgeous transflective display, and should do my digital images justice, at least more so than my monochrome Palm device.
    Also, in the interest of “traveling light”, I am wondering why you are not considering the Spb Full-screen keyboard (software) as opposed to the foldout keyboard (hardware) option.
    Regards,
    Steve

  91. Steve,

    I am bringing the Stowaway because I like typing on a real keyboard vs. a software one. The XT is so small and light that I don’t feel like I am giving up much space.

    Judie :0)

  92. I’ve been putting off purchasing a PDA for a long long time and I have a few questions that I need an expert for:

    1) Can you use a secure site (https) on Wifi with this unit?

    2) It seems as looking at the past posts on this site compaired to the review, the quality is getting better? no? yes? Is this why the 5455 is still not for sale at Best Buy or Circuit City?

    3) At both Best Buy and Circuit City they offer 2 year plans that offer some very interesting return policies. Does anyone have any experance with either polices? Do they work as easly as advertised? They really sound a little too good to be true.

    Thanks in advance for the help.

  93. Hi; thanks for the review. I had just bought the HP 5455 April 2003; and I want to say that I am fairly pleased with it. My unit came with a perfect D-pad; not hard or rigid at all and noticably easier to manipulate than my previous HP Jornada 568. (maybe HP has solved the stiff D-pad problem?) I am a college student and my university has Wi-fi hotspots all over campus. Having wi-fi allows me to check my email and surf the web conviently. I have to admit; setting up the wi-fi was confusing and time consuming at first. Once I had it set up I found that whenever I went from the access point I have setup in my dorm room and the access point on campus the wifi settings would reset and refuse to go back; thus requiring a hard reset. After downloading the new bios and wi-fi driver; the problems have seemed to go away. The only problem (minor) that I encounter is that due to the number of students on the wifi network on campus I am occasionaly dropped; and that requires a soft reset to get back on. I am pleased with this purchase; instead of doodling in class I now check my email, the weather, movie reviews and chat with friends on AOL IM; its great. And compared to my old HP Jornada 568, the screen, the hardware everything is a noticable improvement. I can easily see how a businessperson would benefit greatly from something like this. If you don’t have a use for the wifi or bluetooth; than the 3900 series will be better suited for you. The biometric scanner while I had no problems; is useless for me. I have no vital files on there to protect, and am used to no password (from the Jornada) and instant turn on. So I leave it disabled. Honestly; if you’re considering going with a wireless handheld; give the HP 5455 another look. With the BIOs and Wifi updates; things are running smoothly. Hope this helps everyone.

  94. To answer Volant95’s questions;

    1. I have not been able to log into a secure site on Wifi (this would be nice to buy stuff and check my bank account in class) 🙂

    2. Best Buy is selling the HP 5455 and it is where I bought it.

    3. I did buy the Best Buy service plan and have good luck with them. With something this expensive I think its worth having. Best Buy covers the battery and alot of times if you have a problem its a simple exchange for a new one. Admittedly service varies at different stores; but I’ve had good luck at store #20 Cedar Rapids (the one I bought from) Talk with the service guys before you buy.

    Hope this helps

    -Kevin:cool:

  95. I’ve had my 5455 for about a month now and I have got to say, based on the review given here I almost didn’t do it. My wife said that if I didn’t get my S__t together soon I would be in trouble. So I purchased it thru Amazon at the best price I could find, much lower than anywhere else and took it the Comp USA and bought their extended warrentee.

    My Review:

    – HP 800 help line outstanding, never on hold for more than 45 seconds.

    – Touch pad circle thing works OK. I don’t ever use it much.

    – Fingerprint scanner. Works great. No problems unless I show it off to friends, then for the life of me I can’t get a good scan on the first try. Go figure.

    – WIFI, fun but I can’t find much use for it in my home or business. possibly later. Battery life not-so-good on WIFI

    – No dead Pixles, yet

    I’ve had to soft reset it about 8 times so far, not bad and no Hard Resets yet.

    All I can say is “so far so good”.

  96. Hello all,

    Just for quick background I am a military member and I’m also the supply officer at my unit. We purchased the 3970 for use at work. Let me say that this device (in my estimation) is every bit on par with laptop PC’s. With the right expansions you have all the capability of a laptop in a pocket sized bundle.

    For work and at home this thing has taken over, from replacing my remotes to organizing my next base to base move this gadget rocks!

    This message is a reply to Judie and Julie’s article on the 5400 series iPaq. Our unit is thinking of upgrading to the 5455 (we like the security features) and I’ve personnally had the chance to test out the 5455 on the showroom floor of a local Best Buy. I’m a bit concerned about some of what was stated in your article and have a few questions. Also, I have a few recommendations based on my experience with the 3970.

    You mentioned that your dislike (or dissatisfaction) with the 5455 stemmed from the quirky operation of the bluetooth and WiFi. Did the faulty operation of these features become so overwhelming that it prevented normal use?

    For a purely utilitarian use of the 5455, would you recommend it or does the 3970 do the job just as well?

    As for some of the problems you’ve encountered with the bluetooth features (trying to sync via bluetooth) I contacted HP about this one as we’ve had similar problems. The response was interesting.

    Say you want two Bluetooth enabled items to talk to each other. If you turn both on at the same time, they will not recognize each other (the technician got really confusing, talking about how the transmission wavelengths cancel each other out). He recommended that you enable each device about 45 seconds apart from each other. We tried it and since then we have very few problems with establishing connections via bluetooth.

    Again, I’m curious about the features offered with the 5455 and want an unbiased perspective on its abilities compared with the 3970.

    Thanks!

  97. Originally posted by RX78
    The iPaq is bigger than the XDA or the Audiovox Thera. I wouldn’t want to hold it up to my face to talk. Now if the built-in bluetooth supports the headset profile and I can use my Jabra BT200 with it, I’m in. 😀

    I’m happy to know that the 5600 will have a GSM phone inside. But what about the 5455? Is the SIM card slot useless? Are we sure? How come there is no info on this issue at HP?

    If someone can help I will appreciate. 😀

  98. Any chance for a review of the 5550? I liked the 5400 and wonder if there are any big changes (plus or minus) between the two units?

    I know 128 vs 64 mb ram
    2003 vs 2002 OS
    I am just wondering if its buggy or not . With all new units they all have bugs for the first few months. Anybody know if HP used the exact same casing for the 5550? I just wonder for cases , keyboards , etc…?

  99. My previous post remained unanswered! :confused:

    I try with a new issue to see if I am luckier. I can’t manage to connect the iPAQ to my wifi access point.

    I have the following HW:
    – iPAQ 5455
    – LAN with 10/100 switch that connects: 2 PC’s, 1 T3 connection to Internet, 1 Netgear access point (54 Mb/s)

    I usually connect my Sony Vaio and my MAC iBook through the wifi connection. I have correctly set-up the security options (WEP) and I inserted the iPAQ MAC address in the access point.

    When I turn on the wifi connection in the iPAQ, it recognizes the access point (in the advanced menu of the status option) but it hangs out trying to connect (negotiating, joining, etc..). The signal strength bar shows no signal at all.

    What am I doing wrong? Can anyone help me? I hope I will receive tons of replies! 😀

    Thanks.

  100. Originally posted by micobi
    [B]My previous post remained unanswered! :confused:

    I try with a new issue to see if I am luckier. I can’t manage to connect the iPAQ to my wifi access point.

    I have the following HW:
    – iPAQ 5455
    – LAN with 10/100 switch that connects: 2 PC’s, 1 T3 connection to Internet, 1 Netgear access point (54 Mb/s)

    I usually connect my Sony Vaio and my MAC iBook through the wifi connection. I have correctly set-up the security options (WEP) and I inserted the iPAQ MAC address in the access point.

    When I turn on the wifi connection in the iPAQ, it recognizes the access point (in the advanced menu of the status option) but it hangs out trying to connect (negotiating, joining, etc..). The signal strength bar shows no signal at all.

    I don’t have an answer for you since I no longer have my 54xx.I do know that HP fixed this problem in the 5550 series by fixing the ability to start the WIFI in this unit.

    What am I doing wrong? Can anyone help me? I hope I will receive tons of replies! 😀

    Thanks. [/B]

  101. I had the same thing pop up the other day. The folks at HP Cust. Service told me to remove the battery from the back of the unit for 30 sec. and then re-attach. It then worked like a champ.

    Hope that helps.

    Jeff

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