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  New tabletop chess computer recommendations
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   Author  Topic: New tabletop chess computer recommendations  (Read 1421 times)
bobosse
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« on: October 5, 2008, 11:42PM »
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I suggest a wooden chess computer.
So a Novag Citrine.

Or if you want the chess game of a lifetime and you have enough budget, go to Ebay Germany and buy one from the end of the world champion serie: Mephisto Portorose, Lyon, Vancouver, London or Genius. It will be a second hand but nothing similar exists today.
There are other very good games (Mephisto Risc II or other) but not so easy to find.

If you have a smaller budget and you don't care about wood: a Saitek Explorer pro, Mephisto Chess Challenger, Saitek Talking Chess Academy, Novag Obsidian.
And if you have a very small budget, Excalibur is for me the best choice:
Excalibur Saber IV, KingMaster III, King  Arthur.

Do not take the Star Beryl. It's a very poor device - with a poor usability.


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Tom
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #1 on: October 4, 2008, 11:51PM »
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@sderyke2002: I agree.

If I were me  , I would always buy the strongest device available on the market at present, because I never get dissapointed when losing against a strong machine. A good recommendation is the Mephisto Master Chess, a device highly appreciated by many as can be seen here (scroll down to the end of the device's description until you find the reviews):

http://www.chesshouse.com/Mephisto_Master_Chess_Computer_p/b10.htm

or here:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/review/product/B000096L5U/ref=cm_cr_dp_all_helpful?%5Fencoding=UTF8&coliid=&showViewpoints=1&colid=&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending



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sderyke2002
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #2 on: October 4, 2008, 04:29PM »
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What I would recommend to a player trying to get better would be to buy the strongest computer they could afford with the best board for them.  In your case the quality of the board does not seem to be an issue as long as you have a table top model.  Therefore restrict your reviews to those and then spend the most money you afford to or want to.  Just be sure that the model has this specific key feature - the ability to turn off the computer's thinking on opponents time.  The reason this is key is because you can then play the computer at its lowest levels (where it will respond very quickly - so you don't lose interest) and then you can spend as much time as you want to find the best response and thus beat the monster.  Then move slowly up the time limit choices until you are ready to play it without turning off "thinking on opponents time".  If you can't beat this strong machine even without it thinking on your time then you should record the games and replay the game with colors reversed so you can see what it would have done in your position and then study those key points in the game where your opinion and its choice differed until you understand why you went wrong.  I hope I am being clear why this key feature is so important. 

The advantage of purchasing of strong machine right off the bat is that it will save you a lot of money over the long haul buying and dumping machines as you work up through the ranks.  Of course most of the members here are collectors so this may sound like heresy to them but you sound like someone who is more into finding the right partner and not necessarily in collecting a harem of them. 
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Robert Weck
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #3 on: October 4, 2008, 12:50PM »
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Quote from: Stosh on October  3, 2008, 06:36PM   

For example, I have heard that the Novag Star Beryl plays an interesting game but has a hard to read LCD.  I wonder if it's game play is worth the hassle of the hard to read LCD.  I would like a machine that plays different openings.  Any advice is greatly appreciated.

the most important question is: what strength do you want the computer to have? The Star Beryl is rather weak, it is said, that is has around 1400 ELO (i don't own one, so i can't confirm this)


best regards,
Robert
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #4 on: October 3, 2008, 11:37PM »
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Quote from: Stosh on October  3, 2008, 06:36PM   

I guess I am really looking for specific recommendations.  I have heard mixed reviews about some machines and I was wondering what others experiences were.  For example, I have heard that the Novag Star Beryl plays an interesting game but has a hard to read LCD.  I wonder if it's game play is worth the hassle of the hard to read LCD.  I would like a machine that plays different openings.  Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Stosh


Stosh, it's not very easy to comply with your request, since either not everyone owns so many chess computers that he were able to answer your question in detail, or most of the available computers fit in your need so perfectly (e.g., nearly every chess computer has different openings) that you could take any of them.

Isn't there a bigger store in your closer vicinity where you can try out yourself a few chess computers and have a closer look at them by entering a few positions or playing a few games?

Another possibility are libraries where sometimes a chess computer is installed just for the customers to do some training as it is the case in my town.

If all the possibilities mentioned above are not available I would, if I were you, just buy one which isn't too expensive and try it out at home. If it then turns out not to be the ideal partner, you wouldn't have spent too much money and can look for a better chess computer. The bought one you can give away later as a present to a child, and by this it wouldn't be a loss. Just a proposal.

Best wishes to you!
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Stosh
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #5 on: October 3, 2008, 06:36PM »
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I guess I am really looking for specific recommendations.  I have heard mixed reviews about some machines and I was wondering what others experiences were.  For example, I have heard that the Novag Star Beryl plays an interesting game but has a hard to read LCD.  I wonder if it's game play is worth the hassle of the hard to read LCD.  I would like a machine that plays different openings.  Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Stosh
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Re:New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #6 on: October 2, 2008, 05:07PM »
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Quote from: Stosh on October  2, 2008, 02:47PM   

I have recently gotten back into chess.  I have been playing on the computer but I would prefer to play on a real board.  I have tried playing on the computer while transposing the moves to a real board, but I feel like I sometimes lose the flow of the game.
I am a beginner who is willing to study but my game is not strong yet.  I would like to buy a dedicated tabletop chess computer and I am looking for any recommendations.  I would like one that I will not outgrow but I am realistic enough to know I don't need one that is really strong.  What would you recommend from those that are available in the US?

Thanks for any help,

Stosh


Hello Stosh,

Glad to hear that you are getting back into chess. It is a fascinating game and the range of chess computers available is remarkable. All the units provide a variety of levels to match or challenge your playing skill. The three leading brands are Mephisto, Excalibur, and Novag.  A good place to start is Chesshouse.com:

http://www.chesshouse.com/electronic_chess_s/5.htm

If you have questions about a particular model, I'm sure other members will be happy to offer recommendations. Have fun.

-Marko
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Stosh
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New tabletop chess computer recommendations
« Reply #7 on: October 2, 2008, 02:47PM »
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I have recently gotten back into chess.  I have been playing on the computer but I would prefer to play on a real board.  I have tried playing on the computer while transposing the moves to a real board, but I feel like I sometimes lose the flow of the game.
I am a beginner who is willing to study but my game is not strong yet.  I would like to buy a dedicated tabletop chess computer and I am looking for any recommendations.  I would like one that I will not outgrow but I am realistic enough to know I don't need one that is really strong.  What would you recommend from those that are available in the US?

Thanks for any help,

Stosh
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