It’s been 4 years since Sony released the first model of the PSP. Since then, the PSP hasn’t changed much in functionality or in appearance, but it most certainly has been refined. The PSP has been through 3 generations, 2 of these providing updates. Some would say these updates were not substantial and I would agree with this assessment. While it is clearly a money making scheme for Sony to only provide only small incremental periodic updates, the latest generation called the PSP 3000 is definitely worth taking a look at. If you are already an owner of the previous generation, the PSP 2000, the 3000 is probably not a sorely needed update. If you own a PSP 1000 then you might want to look into purchasing a 3000.
The primary features Sony has been boasting is the brighter and more colorful screen. This is the centerpiece of the new model and there is a big difference when compared to the older models. The new LCD screen features faster response time, a wider color gamut, and a higher contrast ratio than the previous generations and it’s quite noticeable. Supposedly this new screen is equipped with a layer of anti-reflective coating and Sony claims it allows the PSP to be used during outside play but, I can see no difference between the 3000 and the previous models when used in direct sunlight. There are some problems with the new interlaced screen, which was implemented in order to eliminate the ghosting problem that plagued the previous generations when certain titles were played. The interlaced screen does cut down on ghosting but it presents a annoyance in the form of scan lines. When fast moving objects appear on the screen, the scan lines are sometimes noticeable but I barely notice. Only the most obsessed would consider this a big defect while I consider it to be a good trade off. Another negative thing about the screen is that it consumes more power from the battery and reduces overall play time, but I didn’t notice a dramatic reduction
Most of the other changes are purely cosmetic such as the overall size of the PSP 3000. It’s even slimmer than the PSP 2000, otherwise known as the Slim and Lite. The plastic shell used cuts down on fingerprints as it feels a bit more textured and of higher quality than either the 1000 or the 2000. The metal ring on the back of the PSP is thinner and instead of the brushed metal used in the other versions, it uses chrome. Perhaps the best surface change besides the screen is the introduction of the microphone. The microphone can be used to play games over an Internet connection to allow vocal communication with other players, or best of all it can be used in concert with Skype, an Internet calling program that has the ability to not only call computers but phone lines as well. I am an avid user of Skype and often find myself using it instead of my phone when I am at home, so I found the microphone to be a welcome sight, as I thought it was needed on the older models. One of the best features about the PSP is its ability to access wi-fi spots to browse the Internet. I rarely use the Internet feature to play games, though it is possible to play certain PSP games with people all around the globe.The Internet browser is often criticized but I think it is adequate for most normal uses.
The pricing for the PSP is about $199.99 for the Ratchet and Clank: Size Matters bundle pack which comes with a copy of Ratchet and Clank: Size Patters UMD game, National Treasure 2 UMD movie, and a 1 gigabyte Memory Stick Duo. It’s a bit pricey but well worth the expense.