One of the new features of the 2000 series of the PSP is that you can now purchase an AV cable which allows you to watch video or view photographs through your TV (or through a projector if it has composite video inputs).
I recently got hold of a cable, it is available through Amazon, but initially I tried at my local Sony centre (well the PSP is a Sony product and it’s an AV cable and the store has lots of big tellies) well no luck there. Nor at Dixons (well dot Curry Digital’ish aren’t they called) in the end I tried Game and found one on the bottom shelf nearly hidden away.
At £12.99 it’s not expensive, but it’s not cheap either, but it does work very well.
Initially I tried the cable with one of those small portable Toshiba LED projectors and though I couldn’t get any audio it worked much better than I thought it was going to.
Then into a classroom with a projector, all our rooms at Gloucestershire College which have Activboards (which is virtualy all of them) as well as a computer also have an amp and speakers allowing you to play audio very easily in the classroom, so quickly connected to the AV cable to the video input and the amp and there was video form the PSP playing through the big screen.
Also tried PowerPoint slides saved as images which worked well, and a Keynote presentation saved as a movie file complete with audio track which worked even better.
One concern I did have was that there was a warning on the packaging that the PSP could only output in NTSC format only and of course here in the UK we use PAL, so when I got home I connected it to my TV, which is an older Sony CRT model and it worked really really well.
Overall I was impressed with the cable and the quality of the output. It certainly is one option for presenting audio and visual content through a projector or a TV and therefore useful not just for teaching staff in presenting learning resources, but also for learners with accessibility issues in accessing PSP content on a small screen.
I have mentioned video media conversion tools before, but most of them have been applications. These are fine for example if you have the right computer (you need a Mac for VisualHub) or you have administrative rights to install the software on your Windows computer (which in institutions is generally not the case).
So if you can’t install a conversion tool on your computer, how do you convert video files, well I have been looking at online video conversion tools for a while now.
The one I have used and found the results work well on mobile devices is Media-Convert.
It’s quite simple, you upload a media file from your computer, and an online conversion converts into the file format of your choice. It can handle a large number of file types including text and audio as well as video, and has a range of possible output file types.
It can be used to create PDF files which is handy.
The user interface could be better, it is covered in Google ads, but it is free and they need to make money somehow.
I was impressed with the quality, I took a large Quicktime movie and converted it into an MP4 file that could be used on my Nokia N73, and the conversion was done very well.
I was recently told about another online media conversion tool, Zamzar, however the site is populated with pop-ups and you also need to enter an e-mail address which smacks to me that my e-mail might be harvested and passed onto third parties.
The BBC has published a review of four of the top wifi capable media players currently on the market.
The Sony PSP, the Nokia N800, the Archos 605wifi and (of course) the Apple iPod touch.
Gadget lovers are spoilt for choice when it comes to portable media players, with an increasing number offering web access through wi-fi connections. We take a look at four different players – Sony’s PSP Slim, Archos 605wifi, Nokia’s N800 and the Apple iPod touch – and assess their strengths and weaknesses in different categories.
Their winner, well it’s only fair that you check out the article, but it doesn’t surprise me.
The Archival Sound Recordings service is the result of a two-year development project to increase access to the Sound Archive’s extensive collections. When complete, it will make 3,900 hours of digitised audio freely available to the Higher and Further Education communities of the UK.
Part of the JISC Digitisation programme there is a lot of audio and music..
Note you need to be licensed to hear and download the clips, but it is free to FE colleges (and HE Institutions) to get licensed.
If you have created a PowerPoint presentation and added some audio files, say an audio track or a recording from the British Library Archival Sound Recordings collection you may find when you upload the presentation to a website or your VLE that the audio files are now “missing”.
This is because PowerPoint has an option that for files bigger than a certain size it will link to them rather than embed them. This is fine if you play the presentation from your laptop or computer, but rather annoying for a learner who has downloaded the presentation from the VLE and is attempting to play the presentation at home.
In PowerPoint 2003
Tools > Options > General Tab
Link sounds with file size greater than <insert a number which is larger than the size of the audio files being used>
I tested this on our Moodle VLE and it worked a treat. I would guess that later and earlier versions of PowerPoint have a similar option.
I have heard that quite a few institutions are blocking or thinking of blocking mp3 files. The reasoning that “all mp3 files must be pirated songs and thus violating copyright and therefore should be blocked”.
I am assuming they also block other audio formats such as
In my opinion, filtering should be based on the content not the file type.
A blanket filter makes life easier for administration and creates problems for other users.
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