View Full Version : Visor or 3com Palm IIIe, both same price but which is better?

6th December 2000, 07:44
Funny you should ask that. I recieved an eraly Christmas present from my Dad via UPS yesterday, and what should I find but a Visor. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif

Now, obviously I haven't had much time to play with it yet, but I'll offer a few thoughts anyway.

One immediate advantage to the Visor is that it comes with a USB cradle as opposed to a serial one. Although, I suppose that if you don't have a USB port then this isn't an advantage.

Um, so far I haven't found any reason to dislike it. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif I wish it had a little more memory, but the 8mb flash card isn't to much, so if I feel like I ever need it I can get it. This leads into another advantage to the Visor. The Springboard modules. The number of assorted modules available for the Visor is much greater and more competetively priced than the modules avaiable for the Palm III series.

Um, I'm going to pull an opinion out of my a$$ now. If you can afford it, get a Palm Vx. If not, any one of the Visor's is probably your next best deal.


6th December 2000, 16:33
any ideas or experiences guys?

Celeron II 566@ 952 on a Abit BE6 Rev 1, 128 Pc100, Matrox G450 32 DH, SBlive Value, Supra Express 56i ISA, all running on Win98FE with other odds and ends :)

9th December 2000, 19:26
Last time I looked (when my Brother purchased his), the Visor Handspring was locked into one OS version - ie, - it wasn't supposed to be upgradable..(Due to some licensing issues), whereas the Palm is upgradable of course.



9th December 2000, 19:37
I dunno about licensing, but it's not upgradeable due to lack of flash ROM. That's the only thing Palm has going for it.

Nota bene: Speaking specifically of the Palm IIIe, it also has no flash ROM, so that's hardly an advantage. Heh.

Although, there is also the fact that the visor is constructed somewhat cheaply, doesn't come with a serial cradle (this may be a benefit depending on how you look at it and whether you want to use it with your laptop or not), etc.

Also the Visor looks like an i-shmack. For this reason alone, I will never own one.

- Gurm

Listen up, you primitive screwheads! See this? This is my BOOMSTICK! Etc. etc.

[This message has been edited by Gurm (edited 10 December 2000).]

10th December 2000, 08:01
Read a review over on epinions.com that the Visor Deluxe's screen scratches easily with the stylus, whereas the Palm Vx screen is very difficult to scratch.

But the OS is "upgradeable" in RAM in the Visors. Well, in a way that's still an upgrade, no? http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif


10th December 2000, 10:20
No no, it's "patchable" in RAM. A patch, unlike an upgrade, is guaranteed to slow down the machine.

- Gurm

Listen up, you primitive screwheads! See this? This is my BOOMSTICK! Etc. etc.

10th December 2000, 13:32
I guess that's kinda what I meant by "upgradeable", but yes, "patchable" is a better word.

Anybody have much to say about the Vx? Is it worth the dough? Keep in mind this question is also coming from someone who has never owned a PDA and is considering to get one.


10th December 2000, 15:50
Originally posted by Gurm:

Also the Visor looks like an i-shmack. For this reason alone, I will never own one.



Sorry for taking bandwidth, but I found those so funny the first time I saw them....

More on-topic: Any other opinions on which is the best of those PDAs? Any good candidates other than Palm and Visor?
Also, which Palm (since I'm leaning to them at the moment) do you think is best to get, is the Vx worth the extra price over the IIIe?

P.S. spoogenet's situation applies to me as well, I never had a PDA, I don't even know what the different models can do, so some explanations for an absolute novice in this field are greatly welcome.

[This message has been edited by Indiana (edited 10 December 2000).]

10th December 2000, 17:33
Ok, I've had my Visor for a couple of days now, so maybe I can offer some more insight. First, as the the serial cradle thing. Gurm is correct, it does not come with a serial cradle. It comes with a USB cradle. You can however buy a serial cradle. Now personally, I DO see this as an advantage. USB is faster and both my home system and my work system have USB and Win2k so everything works fine.

As far as general use goes, well, it does what it does. I don't really know what to say about it. I haven't had any trouble with it so far. However, I can't compare it to much since the only other PDA I've ever messed with is my friend's Palm V for a few minutes.

One advantage that the Visor has is the Springboard modules. Some of these are pretty cool, such as a GPS tracker.

On the downside the Visor is rather large. It is about a half inch longer than the Palm V/Vx and about twice as thick and weighs about twice as much.

I can't honestly complain too much though, I got mine as a gift. Without a doubt sometime down the road I will upgrade to the Palm Vx or whatever it's successor/future incarnation might be.

So, if you can afford it, the Palm Vx is the way to go. If not the Visor is IMO not a bad choice. Don't get your expectations too high though whatever you decide to get. These these are only designed to be able to do so much. Don't expect it to be able to do everything your computer can, or a laptop, or even a palmtop. It is just what it's name says it is, a Personal Desktop ASSISTANT.


10th December 2000, 18:19
Ok, HedsSpaz, why do you recommend the Vx if someone has the money? Why do you say it is the way to go?

Personally, I'm leaning toward the Vx. It looks nice, seems well built, and looks like it'll do the job for me just fine.

What I plan on using a PDA for, emphasis on plan, is for storing contacts, a calendar, some to-do things, maybe a clock (do any support alarm clock features?). Most of its usage will be to replace my daily planner, so if it can give me GPS, great, that can be nifty, but I really don't need it.


10th December 2000, 18:48
I have the 8MB Visor. It's pretty nifty. Screen is good, the patch didn't slow me down any, and took up all of about 2k.
I'd recommend it over a PalmIII about any time. They're equal except for the upgradability.

You could buy the 2MB Visor, and pay $100 later for the 8MB module if you'd like more memory.

The Palm Vx is nice. I like the PalmV, with its snazzy case and size, but 4MB isn't enough for me ( I use AvantGo).

11th December 2000, 06:51
I suppose it's largely personal preference having to do with size.
4.8" x 3.0" x 0.7" weighs 5.4 oz.
Palm Vx
4.5" x 3.1" x 0.4" weighs 4.0 oz.

I know the differences may not seem like much, but you just have to hold one to notice the difference. The difference in width is by far the most noticable. And when you are carrying one of these things around in your pocket it makes a HUGE difference to have something that is even slightly smaller.

There are two other very important and very nice features about the Vx. First, it has 8mb RAM compared to the 2mb of the Visor. Second, the Vx has a Li-I rechargable battery. The Visor takes 2 AAA batteries. You'd be suprised at how nice being able to plug the Vx into the wall overnight is and then just grab it and go in the morning. It just kinda worries me that I might lose some data at some point because the batteries died/fell out before I could sync with my computer.

Anyway, so, the 3 important advantages of the Palm Vx. Physical size. Memory. Li-I battery.

Hope that gives you some stuff to think about.


11th December 2000, 07:39
Ok, and those are some things that I would consider advantages too. Sure, the Li-ion could be a problem, but then again, I have the same problem with my cell phone, so I just make sure it's charged when I may need it.

Only real disadvantage I see for the Vx is that it's not so cheap. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif

Just out of curiosity, what are peoples' takes on how useful they are for a good daily planner, etc? Since that is the main function I will be performing with it, which ones are the best for things like appointments, contacts, general scheduling, reminders, to-do lists, etc?

Thanks a lot,

11th December 2000, 09:06
The Vx has no memory advantage. I have the 8MB Visor. If I wanted to, I could even extend it to 16MB.

The Li-Ion battery: I decided that I didn't want that battery. My Visor stays in my backpack, too many of my friends leave their Palm V's on the charger base. It's really a matter of how meticulous you are, and I'm not too meticulous when rushing out of the door in the morning.

As far as planners go, and operations in general, they run the same OS, and come with the same software. And they can share the same information across the IR ports.

11th December 2000, 10:06
True, true.

Anybody have any experience with the Clie? It uses a true backlit display, versus the reverse backlit display of the Vx. PCMag said that they found the reverse backlit to help in low light, anybody else have any experience one way or the other with this?

Anybody have much to say about the Clie in general?

Thanks a lot for all the info that has been posted so far. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif


11th December 2000, 10:47
If I had to buy a Palm _TODAY_ I'd be torn between the TRG Pro and the Sony.

The Sony takes memory sticks and supposedly has a better display (is that the "Clie" you mentioned?), but the TRG Pro has a modified sound chip so it can play .wav files, it can also support flash cards.

- Gurm

Listen up, you primitive screwheads! See this? This is my BOOMSTICK! Etc. etc.

18th December 2000, 22:04
Well, I went out and bought the Sony yesterday. Had played with it and the Vx quite a bit last week. Gotta say that I think I really do like the Sony. While it doesn't have quite as many accessories available, since it's not selling well, it's actually a very good unit. Works like a champ, I might even keep it. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif Got 30 days to test it out and see how I like it.

For anybody interested, here are a couple things that I do/don't like about the Sony and Vx.

-Likes: True backlit display, I find it much easier to read in low light. Plug AC adaptor directly to the handheld, don't need the cradle to recharge, excellent for travelling when you have no computer, and hence no need to synch. Memory stick, get some extra memory, and Sony now has an autolauncher that will "run" apps from your memory stick (not really, copies them to the PDA then deletes them when done), but still nice. USB.
-Dislikes: Price. Gotta pay for serial. Slightly smaller display, but really not a big deal (3mm^2 smaller i think).

-Likes: Thinner (Sony is deeper, but not as wide). Metal casing, looks nice, and tough. Serial cradle.

-Dislikes: Gotta take the cradle with you, and it aint too small. Gotta pay for USB. No memory stick. Reverse backlit display, found it more difficult to read in low light.

Overally I think they're both pretty nice units. I found the Handspring to be very heavy and rather large, it also just doesn't feel like it has the quality of the Sony and Palm units. The Handspring stylus is really light and feels cheap, while the Sony and Palm styli are heavier and feel nice (for a stylus) in the hand, doesn't feel cheap. Also the Flash ROM for the OS is excellent to have for upgrades, while the Visors aren't upgradeable.

Okay, well, that's just my take on it for now, in case anybody really cares to read any of it. Enjoy.


19th December 2000, 08:29
I played a bit with the IIIxe. Well, it's a Palm, and it's basically the same internally (as far as I know) as the Vx. Just about the same speed, couldn't tell a difference. Screen's the same size, has reverse backlit display (I don't really like, but some other people swear by them). Just a little bit bigger and heavier than a Vx. One stylus holder, Vx has one on both sides.

It's a good unit, I liked it, I was just looking for something a little smaller to carry around, and true backlit display, hence the Sony.

I actually liked all the Palms I played with, the only ones I don't care for are the Handsprings, which is sad, because they could do so much more with them and their springboard modules. If they'd just make them look and feel higher quality, make 'em a little smaller and lighter, I would maybe buy one.


19th December 2000, 12:21
There are lots of hacks and patches you can download to un-reverse that reversed backlight.

- Gurm

Listen up, you primitive screwheads! See this? This is my BOOMSTICK! Etc. etc.

19th December 2000, 16:22
Wow, this must be catching!
I just ordered my wife a Palm IIIxe.
They have a $50 rebate right now.
It hasn't gotten here yet so I can't say
much about likes & dislikes.

22nd December 2000, 06:58
Really? Hmm, interesting. So then how do they do it? What exactly makes a reverse backlight a reverse, versus a true? I take it that it's a software implementation rather than a hardware, or is it?