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I should start by saying that I am not part of the PlayStation generation, I'm 44 and my first introduction to gaming outside of arcades was awarded to me as the result of an on line competition when I won a good old PSOne (yes, people do win those draws), that was about 7 or 8 years ago I guess.
About 5 years ago I upgraded to the original PS/2 and have enjoyed many late nights / early mornings gaming on that till about 8 months ago when it gave up the ghost. With the launch of PS/3 'imminent' I thought I could wait for that - but Oh No it gets delayed and delayed again and my patience runs out. So a couple of weeks ago I find myself on Amazon making an impulse buy of the new slimline PS/2.
What a FANTASTIC little piece of kit, Sony have done wonders in reducing size and weight, primarily it must be said by making the power supply external and resorting to a top loading disc instead of the drawer arrangement on the original PS/2.
The effect is a totally sexy little console.
Here are the specifics:
> Internal volume has been reduced by 75 percent over the current model > Overall weight has been halved > Thickness trimmed down to 2.8 cm (thickness of current model is 7.8 cm) > Size reduction over the original has to be seen to be believed. > Equipped with an integrated Ethernet port and modem port for online play > 2 controller ports (one supplied) > 2 memory card ports (none supplied)
So as you can see it retains all the functionality of the old PS/2 but with the benefit of making it highly portable.
Apart from the very impressive size / weight saving the biggest benefit for me is no more drone of the old infernal internal fan to keep the inboard power supply cool - that was the worst feature of the PS/2 over the PSOne in my book anyway.
On the down side, the disc lid and the eject and power buttons all feel very flimsy and to properly switch the machine off you have to remove the AC lead from the back of the machine - I'm not a fan of leaving appliances on stand-by - anal I know, but remember I'm an old git of 44!!.
I hope I'm wrong but I get the feeling this size and weight challenged PS/2 isn't going to be nearly as robust as the earlier model and I'd be concerned about letting small children near it.
OK, so if you're not familiar with any PS/2 what can you expect?
Games are backward compatible to the PSOne.
Graphics obviously are dependant on the game you are playing, but on the whole they are adequate rather than good or brilliant in my experience, there isn't a vast improvement over PSOne.
Speed of loading games is also dependant on what you are playing, but it gives you time to settle back in your favourite chair and make sure the phone is unplugged before you begin play.
The controller functions are easy to use for hands of all sizes, although the handset itself isn't exactly an ergonomic victory - looking rather dated these days. Roll on PS/3.
You get the ability to watch your favourite DVD's although I haven't checked for region compatibility, if you're going to use this function I would strongly recommend the purchase of the DVD Remote, as functionality via the controller leaves a lot to be desired.
There are reports of some games freezing on this machine but this seems to be overcome by simply unplugging from the mains if it isn't going to be used for any period of time - not exactly a hardship.
Finally and most importantly - how much? Well, I paid around £97 from Amazon, that's a saving of around £10 over the High St. I could have got it cheaper (just) elsewhere from an on-line shop I'd never heard of, but Amazon have never let me down and I like to stick with suppliers I can rely on.
Am I glad I bought it, a resounding YES, specially with our British summer doing it's usual tricks outside.