67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
on December 12, 2010
For the money, this multimedia player does a lot: plays videos (including flash videos)and mp3s, displays photos, and serves as a decent ereader. Throw in a radio, an onboard speaker (albeit weak range) and recorder, and what's not to like? Well, for starters, as another reviewer notes, there are issues with the battery. The instructions say that for optimum use, you should do a full charge and discharge of the battery at least 4-5 times. What they don't say is that it may take more than 24 hours to do a full charge! It's true that with patience, the battery life does get longer, but not very long (watching videos, the longest it's worked is 2 1/2 hours, and 5 hours using the reader and playing music at the same time). Most people realize that you can only download kindle books with either a kindle or the kindle ap for androids, pcs, etc, so that was no problem for me. I have successfully downloaded books in ePub format from other sites, and enjoy the books already on the Primer. I've also downloaded news and magazines through ecalibre. I did have to figure out how to use each of the apps from the other sites (e.g.,Borders, my library), but once I did, no problems. What I do find annoying is that the directories are confusing, so it's not always easy to find your download immediately, and the ebook directory will list not only your ebooks but also your music, etc (though you can only play videos from the video directory and music from the music directory). I originally gave this multimedia player a four star review, then took that down after the battery problems. I am holding onto mine because it was cheap, and still does more things than a kindle. I also like the ereader's LCD screen better than either the kindle or the b & w nook. But you'll need to be prepared to take some time with this to make it work for you. Or just spend more and get the color nook, which has the color LCD screen, can play videos (though not flash, yet) and music, and has Wi-Fi with a decent browser to boot.
101 of 108 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 2010
Yes this unit uses cheap plastics, the screen graphics are antiquated, it doesn't have wifi or a camera, and it won't do your nails- but, man is this thing fun. By fun I mean, having the ability to carry 10000 books in the palm of your hand, and listen to thousands of songs. I thought the screen was small, but, it is adequate. I can't wait to have it in my hands pretty much all the time. The browser history allows you to read 10 books at a time, and return to the part in each book that you were just reading. It's no frills, although the color scheme is pretty cool. This is my new favorite gadget. It's not an I-Pad, you can actually buy 6 of these or get one I-Pad. As an e-reader, it's extremely adequate. I'm a techie, but, I'll compromise in the name of value. I don't see anything with the abilities of this thing, that isn't almost double the price. I'm sold. I just hope it lasts, the quality is questionable, but, man is this thing fun.
-----Update 1 year later----
*Dropped from 4 Stars to 2 Stars*
I was actually looking for a 10" e-reader and came across this product and my review. A year later- truthfully, this thing sits at the foot of my bed for weeks at a time. I bought a 7" Tablet that I adore- it really points out the inadequacies of this device. With the original Nook or Kindle being a few dollars more- I would not purchase this again. At the time it was a decent no-frills option, but not so much anymore.
Pros: The battery life is great. It reads a variety of types of ebooks. It plays videos (most formats:.avi,.mpg,whatever) and music. With an SD Card the memory is great.
Cons: Now that you can get a crappy tablet for around $100, the $70 you pay for this isn't worth it. The screen does not look like the online pictures, the resolution is very 2002. The worst thing about the devise is how it handles books. It's not a touch screen, so you can't do the dynamic zoom thing with your fingers. Re-sizing pages is a super frustrating task, especially if you have imperfectly formatted e-books. I have some pdf ebooks from limemewire, so they do not have the metadata of kindle ebooks. This makes re-sizing more difficult and even more critical. I'll take this to the gym because I don't care if sweat gets on it, or read in bed when my tablet is charging. Reading comic books in color was an accomplishment last year, but, every reader now has color. The nav screens are not very intuitive- this is now more of a toy than an actual device. I bought this for around $100 last year, and even at the reduced price I wouldn't buy it again. If you have an 8 year old that likes to read, I guess you could buy this, a 14 y/o would be frustrated by this product. I don't think it really even compares to the black and white Nook/Kindle, let alone the sub $150 tablets (albeit crappy ones)available nowadays. Tech has evolved quickly and this device has been left in the dust.
26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on March 31, 2011
The operating instructions (in Chinglish) are certainly lacking but that was made up by the device's intuitive use and control. The micro-plug power connector is easily moved and the device loses connection but if placed on a flat surface that does not shift around the connection is good. After "playing" around with someone else's IPAD and Kindle, I decided I wanted an eGadget that would NOT cost me anything to download, and read "open" or generic ePub, PDF, WORD, MP3/MP4/JPG/WMA/WMV, etc. files. I was not interested in a Web-enabled device (I have a great laptop for that) and does not care for a "touch-screen" technology. I did not want a device with camera (I have a terrific Canon,) a GPS (my wife tells me where to go,) or a restaurant lookup capability (could not afford to eat out.) I also wanted a device with portable "flash card" capability that can allow me to "transport" files between my laptop and eGadget; a rechargeable battery via USB and AC power pack; audio playback via built-in speakers or stereo headphones; industry standard USB and RCA jacks; a screen size that would fit inside my old DayTimer zip case; reasonably light and thin; under $100. This little unit is a winner. I packed it with photos, homemade videos, MP3 music files, and documents in WORD and PDF format. I can watch three hour videos (I'm retired and I can do this) between recharge. I am a docent at the Hampton Roads Naval Museum and our museum manual is several hundred pages long, in PDF format. I now "carry" this manual on this Sytex and can easily check out a page or two when needed. The videos are not bright and hi-res compared to playback on a laptop (costing $600) or PC (with a 1GB gamer ATI Radeon card) but the resolution is good enough to enjoy the show. I am putting my comparison in perspective here. The music playback is NOT THX/Bose quality, but hey, this is a $100 gadget. Besides, I am 71 years old and I think the hi-fi audio/video degradtion is NOT from any device I use. Overall, I got what I wanted with a value I expected. Anyone expecting an IPAD-like device for this price is going to be disappointed.
68 of 75 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2010
Wow!!!!!!! I am impressed. I bought this for my son for Christmas and just got it in the mail today. My daughter and I played with it for quite some time.
The clarity of the picture for all, photos, movies and ereader is incredible!!!
The Audio is awsome and actually sounds like a stereo when you play music. I know he will just love this Christmas!!!1
Fantastic price! I am so glad I did not spend the hundreds of dollars for another and I got more especially full color!!!!!
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on January 29, 2011
I received the Skytex Primer E-reader for Christmas 2011 from my DH... and have not put it down since. I must admit, when I first opened the gift and saw that it wasn't a Kindle, I was quite disappointed that DH just didn't understand my needs. What I've learned, is he's actually a great listener and knew exactly what was important in an e-reader for me. For the $90 it was bought for, this baby has alot of bells and whistles.
I will start with stating the Primer does NOT have wireless, you must actually plug the item into your computer to download information. I originally thought that I "must" have wireless, but have grown accustomed to taking the extra minute to do what needs to be done.
For the battery issues, I did find that it took about 3 full discharges and overnight charges to get me an optimal battery life (if I'm just reading, 10-15 hours). I normally don't play a whole bunch of items at once, so my battery does last at least a full day or two. I must also state here that the plug cord was not the best in my case (kept slipping out)... what I did find, though, is that my blackberry charge cord works PERFECT for this item. So if you have any charge cord with that type of ending, I would suggest that for charging.
The tabs are direct, you must be in Video to play video, Music to play music, etc. I was able to set up my own separate directories when had the Primer plugged to my computer. Just create folders as you would on any drive under its specific heading and should be able to find what you need.
I love, Love, LOVE that this item has color graphics. The pictures are clear and the colors vibrant. I've never had a video lurch when playing, the photos are not grainy, and pages show up with no glare. Also, having the option between size fonts is a definite plus.
There is a built-in speaker that does a decent job. The volume goes to a nice level (this isn't a normal house system, understand you aren't going to blow your eardrums out) and I was able to hear it quite nicely in my car driving and listening to an audio book. There is a plug for headphones, so you have the benefit of both options.
Lastly, the absolute best feature about this item is its versatility for book downloads. I'm not stuck to just one site/store for my items. I have downloaded from Borders, Barnes&Noble, GoogleBooks, epubs, plus others. This has allowed my library to grow exponentially, and I have the benefit of buying my items at the best price I can find (if I can save a buck here or there, I'm going for it).
I have given this item a 5-star rating, because for me, it's been close to perfect. If there was an option, I would state the Primer as a 4.5 (due to not having wireless which is a big "NEED" for many people).
If there are any other questions, don't hesitate to comment.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2011
I love my Skytex. Unit is just the right size and has a cute neoprene cover to protect it. The off/on switch is a little sensitive but easy to adjust to how long you have to hold it down to power the unit on or off. Customer support is one of the best out there. Unit can easy be upgraded via the website for firmware updates that will improve the unit performance. Skytex has procurred licensing to allow download of DRM protected books and is testing it now. Current users have been emailed instructions on how to upgrade the firmware to allow this.
The instruction manual isn't the easiest to understand but you really don't need it. It is pretty intuitive how to work the various features. If you go to Skytex website you can send them an email with any questions and they are lightening fast in responding with all the information you could possibly look for. The tech support is great, I ran into a problem doing my firmware upgrade trying to follow the instructions. I sent Skytex an email and within an hour they responded back with what I was doing wrong and gave me screen shots to aid me in following the directions.
The only features missing from this to compare it in operation to an Ipad would be the wifi and internet capability but I really only wanted the ereader and the video playing. Basically this little unit replaces and improves upon what you can do with a smart phone - that is play music, display your pictures, read books/magazines and play videos. With a 7 inch screen it is super light and portable yet really is HUGE in all that it can do to entertain you. The ability to reverse colors will make it easy to read in low light conditions. I love, love, love my Skytex.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on February 5, 2011
I really like this unit. It's a great product, with a great price. I have a lot of Sony Reader ePub books, but initially they wouldn't open on the Primer. So I e-mailed the company support department, received a same day reply advising me that an upgrade was available that would solve the problem. After downloading the upgrade, I had a bit of trouble installing it, so I phoned their support department, and was talking with a real live person right off the bat. The support rep stepped me through the upgrade process, and had the unit reading my Sony ePub books in short order. Am now able to transfer and read all my ePub books without further ado. I rate the Skytex company, along with this reader and media player, as superior.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on July 28, 2011
first its very handy, its colored too. ebooks, videos, music, photos - what else can you ask for. i've had it like 2 days - and i've no complains. i haven't done that required 3-4 times to drain and fully charge, i'm charging it fully now. but so far i've used it all day yesterday - watched a movie like 3 times before the thing died. so i'd have to say that its doing pretty well. but i've to wait till it fully charges, it seems like it is taking long. maybe charging it with the plug instead of the pc might be faster, so will definitely try that next.
the menu is very easy to navigate even if you can see only a few characters of the title - what i did - i fixed the files names and the folders accordingly and i've no problem. every thing loads fast and its flexible - horizontal or vertical.
the video plays HD in such a small screen. was watching shrek, very clear and good picture. it pops out. very good quality. although the volume is a bit of a problem. have to be completely quiet surroundings to hear - so i just use my headsets. i've tried to attach it to the cars audio via aux. it sounded great that way.
same with music. pretty good. it was actually louder than the video which is very curious. but who's complaining right.
photos are good quality. i have high resolution photos in it - its high resolution view as well. its a really cool photo album.
the ebooks are awesome. the zoom feature lets me zoom in and zoom out. and lets me view horizontal or vertical - whatever i feel like... very flexible and easy to navigate.
also, it doesn't restrict you with the formats you need used. no need to convert or get the first format. very flexible. for movies, audio, and photos.
all in all - for the price and quality and features its an AWESOME buy. my sister is actually planning to get one for her 3 year old son. :-)
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2011
First reader that I purchased made such a hid with my wife that I was not able to get it away from her. Purchased the SKYTEX primer just so that I have one to use. I have found it to be an exceptional deal. Movie quality is excellent (average **.avi file size 1.5G). Multiple book formats saves a lot of work. As a note to others: the radio will only work with earphones connected, as it seems that the phone leads are used as the antenna. Slide-show pictures is very handy. The built-in speaker system is a bit weak but usable in quiet places. Have found Calibre eBook software to be compatible with the device (connects as Sovos device). Battery life after several weeks is between 4 and 12 hours, depending on video or eBook use. Have not timed it for music only.
I am well pleased with the device and would highly recommend it to others.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2011
I was very impressed when I received my ereader. It feels good in my hands, has a decent screen, and plays all the formats it promises. Connecting the unit to my computer for file transfer was about as hard as using a usb key. I have read a couple of books on it already and am quite happy with it. The only complaint I have is that the built in speaker is not very good (this is more than okay since it is an ebook reader, not a stereo). I was having a problem the battery and I contacted Skytex support. Their support was friendly and helpful. They sent me out a replacement unit no problem. The battery on the second unit works much better. Excellent customer service. I was also concerned about finding a nice cover/case for this ereader (aside for the decent neoprene one it comes with) but I found this one: NookColor Leather Executive Folio Cover, Black (Fits 7" Color Display, Latest Generation) by Kiwi Cases (NookColor). It fits perfectly. To sum it up, for the price if you are looking for a decent ereader that can also do some music and the occasional video clip, you can't go wrong with this one for the price.