My Psion Series 7 – a month later

Nigel left this comment on my site: “I’ve also managed to get another Psion Series 7 (I missed the old one) so any news on your own experiences would be appreciated!”

On 3 June I took delivery of this second-hand Psion Series 7. A month later, how am I getting on?

Psion Series 7

Well, close followers of my blog will know that shortly after my S7 arrived, my trusty 5mx gave up the ghost. The screen cable died — a common complaint with Psions. So, for a couple of days, while I sent my 5mx to POS Ltd. to be repaired, my S7 became my primary PDA. To be honest, and I’ll have to whisper this bit for fear of offending my 5mx, I prefer the S7. It has a far superior screen, a more comfortable keyboard, and did I mention the screen? Once I saw through a screen dimly… as St Paul might have written if he’d used a Psion to write his epistles.

Actually, other than the improved screen, which is colour, and the better keyboard, and the fact that the S7 can accommodate a maximum of two compact flash (CF) cards for extra storage, and a Psion Dacom Gold Card PCMCIA modem card, and it has a superior rechargeable battery, there’s not that much between them.

I love the fact that I can run the same software on both of them — and given there is so much freeware Psion software, that’s a lot of software. I love the fact that I can send files between the two, either via IrDA infrared or on a CF card. I love the fact that I can send my Agenda and Contacts over to the S7 from the 5mx using the excellent (and free) EpocSync application. I love the fact that I can connect both of them to my PC using the same RS232 cable (though not at the same time!).

I’m still using my 5mx as my day-to-day workhorse: my contacts, agenda, and to do list. And I’ve begun to complete one of my long-term writing projects on the S7. It is perfect for that.

My one gripe is that somehow, for some bizarre reason, known only to the engineers at Psion, on the S7 the Fn and Menu keys have been transposed compared with the 5mx. There are a few other key adjustments between the two machines, but the Fn and Menu keys catch me out every now and then, particularly since I’m using both machines regularly.

Other than that, what a fantastic machine. I wish that Psion were still building new EPOC/Symbian OS-driven machines; the operating system is so stable and a joy to use (and program for). I imagine that a new Psion model would include a built-in modem, Bluetooth and wireless LAN support. Maybe even a USB port to replace the ancient RS232 serial connection. And whole lot more memory. It’s not going to happen, but it’s nice to dream.

OFFER: Psion Dacom Gold Cards

I now have two Psion Dacom Gold Cards surplus to requirements. Free to a good home, or homes. If you want them you can have them.

  • 1 x V34+Fax – no cable – you get it as you see it.
  • 1 x 56k+Fax – possibly broken,with cable and PhoneTools software on 3.5″ disk. (I also have the “Gold Card Global V.90 Disks” – Utilities Disk and Win95/98/NT Drivers, if you also want a copy of these on 3.5″ or CDROM.

This is what they look like:

Psion Dacom Gold Card modems

You’d get them just as you see them. I’m happy to pay postage, they are no use to me now.

Posting to my blog from a Psion Series 7

I’m posting this entry from my Psion Series 7 (EPOC Web application).

For a couple of days I’ve been struggling to work out how to get my new Series 7 to connect to the web via the Psion Dacom Gold Card (56k+Fax) modem that came with it. At last it has worked! … using a different Gold Card.

I now have three Gold Card Multi-function PCCards: 2 x 56k+Fax and 1 x V34+Fax. I don’t have the connector for the V34, but I’m going to test out the other 56k model to see if it really wasn’t working. How fun!

In through the out door

The excitement of receiving my new Psion Series 7 on Thursday has been superceded a little by the grief of losing my Psion Series 5mx this evening to a broken screen cable. My screen now looks a little like this:

Broken Psion screen

Which, while being pretty and a bit 1970s retro, wasn’t a whole lot of good when I opened it at the team meeting this evening wanting to add something to my to do list.

Thankfully my dear friends at POS Ltd. will come to the rescue, and I’ll get it back in no time at all, looking good as new. This will be my first 5mx that I send to them, having sent a couple of 3mx machines in the past.

At the moment I’m backing it up — 12 mins 5 seconds to go now.

Psion Series 7

On Sunday I won a Psion Series 7 computer on eBay, for a cool £187, including postage and packing. This also included a leather case, and a Psion Gold Card (a multi-function card, including a 56k modem). Here it is, as illustrated on eBay.

Psion Series 7

I’ve spent the last couple of hours installing software on it, including a wonderful application called EPOCSync which allows me to synchronize my Series 5mx with my new Series 7 via IRDA (InfraRed)! Very many thanks to Bernard for that tip.

Also installed this evening were

  • PocketChess for EPOC (Freeware)
  • MahJongg v.1.21 (Registered) by Adrian Collister
  • Opera 5.14 for EPOC (Shareware)
  • psiMind (Freeware) — a mindmapper application
  • PDF+ (Registered) — for viewing PDF files, including the Series 7 manual
  • Street ’99 (Commercial) with the entire map of Edinburgh.
  • EPOC Text Editor, v.1.41 (049)

Still much to install (hoorah for Compact Flash cards!). I have a 256MB and a 64MB card.

I’ll write more about it later. Must get to bed now.