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I received a gift of a Sony PRS50 electronic book reader recently. I can use it to purchase E Books from the Sony E book store, but I have found many Ah Hah uses. It has a slot to add a memory stick, and an SD card. The software also allows the import of PDFs from your computer. I am in the process of having th entire Norbeck, O'Niell, and many others all in a small portable device that lives in a shoulder bag or case. Now I know we have had a recent discussion on ABC vs Sheet Music and it can display either. It is also an MP3 player, and photo viewer as long as you can stand black and white only. Now, the fact that any document or web page can be easily turned into a PDF on a Mac by using the print command and selecting save as .pdf, in combination with downloadable pdfs I have a mini trad archive of sorts measuring just 5X8X.25 inches.

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I received a gift of a Sony PRS50 electronic book reader recently. I can use it to purchase E Books from the Sony E book store, but I have found many Ah Hah uses. It has a slot to add a memory stick, and an SD card. The software also allows the import of PDFs from your computer. I am in the process of having th entire Norbeck, O'Niell, and many others all in a small portable device that lives in a shoulder bag or case. Now I know we have had a recent discussion on ABC vs Sheet Music and it can display either. It is also an MP3 player, and photo viewer as long as you can stand black and white only. Now, the fact that any document or web page can be easily turned into a PDF on a Mac by using the print command and selecting save as .pdf, in combination with downloadable pdfs I have a mini trad archive of sorts measuring just 5X8X.25 inches.

 

That sounds pretty cool. When I have looked for tunes on the web, I find that there are so many versions out there and I want a particular one so I have to search for a while to find a compatible one, or make my own... either way, it takes time. So, all I'm saying is back up your files.

 

Also, on your long train commute to and from your sessions you can breeze through the complete works of Dostoevsky.

Edited by Jody Kruskal
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Train, Ha. My local session is a 3 minute drive from the house. I think the idea of the electronic book reader is good for some. The cost of books is about 20% less than real book. I still like real pages to flip, and just trying to find a reason to like my gift.

 

 

 

 

I received a gift of a Sony PRS50 electronic book reader recently. I can use it to purchase E Books from the Sony E book store, but I have found many Ah Hah uses. It has a slot to add a memory stick, and an SD card. The software also allows the import of PDFs from your computer. I am in the process of having th entire Norbeck, O'Niell, and many others all in a small portable device that lives in a shoulder bag or case. Now I know we have had a recent discussion on ABC vs Sheet Music and it can display either. It is also an MP3 player, and photo viewer as long as you can stand black and white only. Now, the fact that any document or web page can be easily turned into a PDF on a Mac by using the print command and selecting save as .pdf, in combination with downloadable pdfs I have a mini trad archive of sorts measuring just 5X8X.25 inches.

 

That sounds pretty cool. When I have looked for tunes on the web, I find that there are so many versions out there and I want a particular one so I have to search for a while to find a compatible one, or make my own... either way, it takes time. So, all I'm saying is back up your files.

 

Also, on your long train commute to and from your sessions you can breeze through the complete works of Dostoevsky.

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I think the idea of the electronic book reader is good for some. The cost of books is about 20% less than real book. I still like real pages to flip, and just trying to find a reason to like my gift.

I think you've found it. I like books too much to want to give up the sight of them lining my walls, but a handheld device that acts as a music repository, both audio and score, well that's tempting. Where's me Christmas present list. "Dear Santa, well I've been a good boy ..."

 

Chris

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We have two Sony Readers at our house, a PRS-505 and a PRS-700. I've had the former for three years or more and it's served me well. My wife has the PRS-700 and I don't get a chance to spend time with it so I can only comment on the 505 with familiarity. It's kept me company on many plane flights, providing a slender lightweight source of easy to read text and I use the music playing feature with ear-buds to listen to light relaxing instrumental music while reading - it really helps block the sound of the engines in flight.

 

My only complaint about the music playing feature is that while one can load a large number of CDs into the reader (limited only by the size of the memory chip installed), there's no ability to put tracks into individual folders or directories so all the music tracks end up in one big collection. While one can select individual tracks to play, that must be done one at a time as the music plays and can't be done in advance (no track lists). If left to play continuous music, it steps through the available tracks sequentially in alphabetical order by track name. I deal with this by just loading a few compatible (to my ears) CD's worth of music so it all blends well.

 

I had the notion a few years ago that I might be able to load PDF copies of sheet music into the reader and thus use it as an electronic music book capable of holding thousands of pages of sheet music. While that is possible, I discovered that the small size of the screen was a problem. The image was sharp enough, but one has to look closely to see the details of the content. I concluded it would be suitable as a reference if one wanted to remind themselves of how a tune was structured, but the small size required too much concentration to use it as a convenient read-as-you-play source of sheet music. I'm not an ABC player, but I imagine an electronic reader would work well for displaying such files so long as the text is formated to an appropriate size when the PDF file is created.

 

Some of the newer models of readers (by Sony and others) offer larger screens they might be capable of displaying PDF based sheet music at a size that's easy to read while playing. To be clear, my reader displays e-book text in user-selectable sizes that are quite comfortable for reading and I use it frequently. Aside from the "purchase" and "free" books (the latter are often out-of-copyright "classics") available from various commercial sources, my local library offers a large number of more recently published free-to-lend e-books and audio-books and that works out well for me. I'm able to easily download them on-line and install them on my reader.

 

The Sony reader isn't capable of interpreting ABC files into audio output. While some reader button and display functions can be modified by brave owners using Internet available "hacks," in a practical sense it doesn't offer the ability to run user loaded programs so one is limited to the basic menu. I suppose it'd be possible to simulate ABC interpretation on a Sony reader. One could use a computer to create an appropriate PDF ABC file to provide a visual "text" representation and then use the computer (and suitable software) to interpret the source ABC file and produce an mp3 sound file. Once both files have been loaded onto the reader one could then view the ABC content and use the player feature to listen to the sound it represents. Seems like a lot of effort to me though.

 

As to a portable ABC player, I've got a great pocket-sized player that holds thousands of tunes. The free program TunePal by Dr. Bryran Duggan of Ireland runs on almost any PDA or mobile phone that uses the Microsoft Mobile Windows operating system. I installed it on my HP PDA a few years ago and more recently on my Samsung Omnia phone. Using TunePal I have several thousand tunes available on my cell phone and they take very little memory storage space because they are ABC text files rather than sound files. TunePal interprets the ABC format and then plays it in a variety of available voices and you can easily change the playing speed and even adjust the pitch.

 

I wrote about TunePal a few years ago here, and the only real change since then is that Dr. Duggan now offers the complete full-feature version at no cost.

 

Edited to add ABC player related text

Edited by Bruce McCaskey
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Also, if you want a portable device that can both display sheet music and play/interpret it (using a midi player, basically?), you also might consider a netbook computer. The display isn't the fancy e-ink, but it's just as portable and is actually a tiny computer, so in addition to reading and playing music (and movies), you can surf the internet, etc. The cheap ones cost about the same as an e-reader. I have a little Asus Eee PC netbook computer, which is about the size of a paperback book, and I have it loaded up with tunes downloaded from thesession.org, etc. I've also found myself searching for a lot of tunes on youtube, and saving the videos for future reference.

 

But, as far as screen size goes, it's quite small. I have pretty good eyesight, but it's hard to sight-read music unless you get fast and accurate at scrolling downward while playing (works okay on mandolin, but probably not feasible on the concertina).

 

Hooray technology! I can see a device of the future -- pen tablet that displays, plays, and allows you to write sheet music... maybe this already exists (ie, tablet PC with the right software on it).

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It won't play any music, only can do pics, but -- I like having the use of my Garmin GPS for whatever photo I want, via the SD card. (Not all garmins have the sd slot, I guess.)

 

I don't like to lug around a bunch of technology, but, I've got to know where I'm going so I have the garmin.

 

So, if you must have a GPS gadget, get one that can show some pics!

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I received a gift of a Sony PRS50 electronic book reader recently. I can use it to purchase E Books from the Sony E book store, but I have found many Ah Hah uses. It has a slot to add a memory stick, and an SD card. The software also allows the import of PDFs from your computer. I am in the process of having th entire Norbeck, O'Niell, and many others all in a small portable device that lives in a shoulder bag or case. Now I know we have had a recent discussion on ABC vs Sheet Music and it can display either. It is also an MP3 player, and photo viewer as long as you can stand black and white only. Now, the fact that any document or web page can be easily turned into a PDF on a Mac by using the print command and selecting save as .pdf, in combination with downloadable pdfs I have a mini trad archive of sorts measuring just 5X8X.25 inches.

 

 

Great idea. I tried it with my Kindle; works fine. Thanks for the suggestion

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