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   Author  Topic: novag star sapphire hand held  (Read 2742 times)
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« on: June 6, 2005, 05:38PM »
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Quote from: Ismenio on June  5, 2005, 07:47PM   

Tom,
I'm very interested in seeing those games! I know the Novag has won many accolades so I would make an educated guess that it got the most points on your test so, it would be better than the Chessica but I wonder how much better.
Ismenio

Ismenio, you were right to suppose Novag would come out better. In fact, Novag won them all. I hope these notes are accurate:

[Event "20 min/game"]
[Site "Overtom"]
[Date "2005.06.03"]
[Round "-"]
[White "Novag Star Ruby"]
[Black "excalibur Chessica"]
[Result "1-0"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Nxe4 6. d4 b5 7. Bb3 d5 8.
dxe5 Be6 9. c3 Bc5 10. Nbd2 O-O 11. Bc2 Nxf2 12. Rxf2 f6 13. exf6 Bxf2+ 14.
Kxf2 Qxf6 15. Nf1 Ne5 16. Be3 Rae8 17. Bc5 Nxf3 18. gxf3 Rf7 19. Ne3 Qg5
20. Qg1 Qf4 21. Qg3 Kh8 22. Qxf4 Rxf4 23. Kg3 Rf7 24. Ng2 Bf5 25. Re1 Rxe1
26. Nxe1 Bxc2 27. Nxc2 Rf6 28. Nd4 Rg6+ 29. Kf2 Kg8 30. h4 Kf7 31. b3 Kf6
32. f4 Rg4 33. Kf3 h5 34. Nc6 Kf5 35. Ne7+ Ke6 36. f5+ Kd7 37. Ng6 Re4 38.
Bd4 Re1 39. Nf4 Rf1+ 40. Ke3 Re1+ 41. Kd3 Rd1+ 42. Kc2 Ra1 43. Kb2 Rf1 44.
Nxh5 Rxf5 45. Nxg7 Rf1 46. h5 Rh1 47. Be3 Rh2+ 48. Kb1 Rh3 49. Bd4 c5 50.
Bxc5 Rxc3 51. Bd4 Rd3 52. Bf6 Rf3 53. Bd4 Rd3 54. Be5 Re3 55. Bb2 Re1+ 56.
Kc2 Re2+ 57. Kc1 Rh2 58. a3 Rh1+ 59. Kc2 Rh2+ 60. Kb1 Rh3 61. Ka2 Rh2 62.
b4 d4 63. Kb3 d3 64. Bc3 Kc6 65. Ne6 d2 66. Kc2 d1=Q+ 67. Kxd1 Rxh5 68. Kc2
Rh2+ 69. Kd3 Ra2 70. Nd4+ Kd6 71. Nc2 Ke6 72. Ba1 Kd6 73. Kc3 Kd5 74. Bb2
Ke4 75. Kb3 Rxb2+ 76. Kxb2 Kd3 77. Kb3 Kd2 78. Nd4 Kd3 79. Ne6 Ke3 80. Kc3
Kf3 81. Nc7 Kf4 82. Kd4 Kf5 83. Nxa6 Kf4 84. Nc7 Kf5 85. Nxb5 Ke6 86. a4
Kd7 87. Kd5 Kc8 88. Kc6 Kb8 89. a5 Ka8 90. a6 Kb8 91. a7+ Ka8 92. Nc7+ Kxa7
93. b5 Kb8 94. b6 Kc8 95. b7+ Kd8 96. b8=Q+ Ke7 97. Nd5+ Ke6 98. Qf8 Ke5
99. Qf4+ Ke6 100. Qf6#
{White mates} 1-0

[Event "20 min/game"]
[Site "Overtom"]
[Date "2005.06.03"]
[Round "-"]
[White "Excalibur Chessica"]
[Black "Novag Star Ruby"]
[Result "0-1"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. c3 Nf6 5. d4 exd4 6. cxd4 Bb4+ 7. Bd2
Bxd2+ 8. Nbxd2 d5 9. exd5 Nxd5 10. Qb3 Na5 11. Qa4+ Nc6 12. O-O O-O 13.
Bxd5 Qxd5 14. Qc4 Be6 15. Qxd5 Bxd5 16. b3 Rfe8 17. Rfe1 Nb4 18. Rec1 c6
19. Rc3 Bxf3 20. Nxf3 Re2 21. a4 Rae8 22. Ne5 Nc2 23. Kf1 Nxa1 24. Kxe2 f6
25. f4 fxe5 26. dxe5 Rd8 27. f5 Rd5 28. e6 Re5+ 29. Kf3 Rxf5+ 30. Ke4 Rf2
31. Rd3 Kf8 32. Ke5 Re2+ 33. Kf5 Rxg2 34. Rd8+ Ke7 35. Rd7+ Ke8 36. Rxb7
Rxh2 37. Ke5 Re2+ 38. Kd6 Rd2+ 39. Kxc6 h5 40. Rxa7 Nxb3 41. Rf7 Nd4+ 42.
Kb6 Rb2+ 43. Ka5 Nxe6 44. Ra7 h4 45. Ra6 Kd7 46. Ra7+ Kd6 47. Ra6+ Kd5 48.
Rb6 Rxb6 49. Kxb6 h3 50. a5 h2 51. a6 h1=Q 52. Kb5 Qb1+ 53. Ka5 Kc4 54. Ka4
Qa2#
{Black mates} 0-1

[Event "30 min/game"]
[Site "Overtom"]
[Date "2005.06.04"]
[Round "-"]
[White "Novag Star Ruby"]
[Black "Excalibur Chessica"]
[Result "1-0"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8.
c3 O-O 9. h3 Bb7 10. d4 Re8 11. Nbd2 Bf8 12. a4 h6 13. Bc2 exd4 14. cxd4
Nb4 15. Bb1 c5 16. axb5 axb5 17. Rxa8 Qxa8 18. Qe2 c4 19. Qe3 Nbd5 20. Qe2
Nf4 21. Qf1 Be7 22. Kh2 Rc8 23. Nxc4 bxc4 24. Bxf4 Bxe4 25. Bxe4 Nxe4 26.
b3 cxb3 27. Qd3 Nxf2 28. Qe3 Nxh3 29. Kxh3 Bd8 30. Qe8+ Kh7 31. Qxf7 Bf6
32. Qxb3 d5 33. Re6 Rf8 34. Kh2 Rf7 35. Qb1+ Kg8 36. Qg6 Qc8 37. Re2 Qd7
38. Bxh6 Kh8 39. Bxg7+ Bxg7 40. Ng5 Be5+ 41. Rxe5 Rf8 42. Ne6 Rf5 43. Rxf5
Qc7+ 44. Re5 Qh7+ 45. Rh5 Qxh5+ 46. Qxh5+ Kg8 47. Qg6+ Kh8 48. Qg7#
{White mates} 1-0

[Event "30 min/game"]
[Site "Overtom]
[Date "2005.06.05"]
[Round "-"]
[White "Excalibur Chessica"]
[Black "Novag star Ruby"]
[Result "0-1"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. c3 Nf6 5. d4 exd4 6. cxd4 Bb4+ 7. Bd2
Bxd2+ 8. Nbxd2 d5 9. exd5 Nxd5 10. Qb3 Na5 11. Qa4+ Nc6 12. Qb5 Nf4 13. O-O
O-O 14. Qc5 Ne6 15. Bxe6 Bxe6 16. Rfe1 a6 17. b3 Bd5 18. Qc3 Re8 19. Rxe8+
Qxe8 20. Re1 Qf8 21. Ne5 Re8 22. Ne4 Kh8 23. Nc5 Re7 24. Ned7 Rxe1+ 25.
Qxe1 Qc8 26. Qe2 b6 27. Qxa6 Qe8 28. Nxb6 cxb6 29. Nd3 h6 30. h3 Qe4 31. f3
Qxd4+ 32. Kh2 g6 33. Kg3 Kg7 34. Nf4 Qe5 35. Qxb6 Nd4 36. a4 Ne2+ 37. Kf2
Nxf4 38. Qb5 Qb2+ 39. Ke3 Nxg2+ 40. Kd3 Nf4+ 41. Ke3 Qc3+ 42. Kxf4 g5+ 43.
Kg3 Qxf3+ 44. Kh2 Qg2#
{Black mates} 0-1

[Event "45 min/game"]
[Site "Overtom"]
[Date "2005.06.07"]
[Round "-"]
[White "Novag Star Ruby"]
[Black "Excalibur Chessica"]
[Result "1-0"]

1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 cxd5 4. c4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e6 6. Nf3 Be7 7. cxd5 Nxd5
8. Bd3 Nxc3 9. bxc3 O-O 10. Bf4 Bd6 11. Bxd6 Qxd6 12. O-O Nc6 13. Rb1 b6
14. Re1 Kh8 15. Qc2 f5 16. Bc4 Na5 17. Bb3 Nxb3 18. axb3 Bb7 19. Qe2 Be4
20. Rbd1 Rac8 21. c4 Qe7 22. Nd2 Qf6 23. Nxe4 fxe4 24. Qc2 Qh4 25. g3 Qf6
26. Rxe4 Qf5 27. Qe2 Qf3 28. Qxf3 Rxf3 29. Ra1 Rxb3 30. Rxa7 Rd3 31. Rg4 g6
32. Rh4 h5 33. Re4 g5 34. Rd7 Rxc4 35. Rxe6 Rd1+ 36. Kg2 Rc8 37. Rxb6 h4
38. gxh4 gxh4 39. Rh6+ Kg8 40. Rxh4 Rd3 41. Re4 Rd1 42. Kg3 Rd3+ 43. f3 Rd2
44. h4 Rd1 45. d5 Rg1+ 46. Kh3 Rh1+ 47. Kg4 Rf8 48. Kg3 Rf6 49. Re8+ Rf8
50. Rxf8+ Kxf8 51. d6 Rd1 52. h5 Ke8 53. Re7+ Kd8 54. h6 Rxd6 55. h7 Rg6+
56. Kf4 Rh6 57. Ra7 Rxh7 58. Rxh7 Ke8 59. Ke5 Kf8 60. Kf6 Ke8 61. Re7+ Kd8
62. f4 Kc8 63. f5 Kd8 64. Ke6 Kc8 65. f6 Kd8 66. f7 Kc8 67. f8=Q#
{White mates} 1-0

My conclusion: Chessica starts every game in quite an intimidating way, but Novag proves the better one in the endgame.

Best regards,

tom
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #1 on: June 5, 2005, 07:47PM »
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Tom,

I'm very interested in seeing those games! I know the Novag has won many accolades so I would make an educated guess that it got the most points on your test so, it would be better than the Chessica but I wonder how much better.

And Christian, thanks for that game! I will add that to the list of playable games on the Resurrection page.

Ismenio
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #2 on: June 5, 2005, 04:45PM »
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Quote from: Ismenio on May 28, 2005, 07:09PM   
I think those pictures look pretty good. I would like to have one of those Novag but just for collecting sake and not to use them as a handheld computer for playing chess. And no way am I paying the current prices for them!
Funny that you compared them to the Mattel! I had the very same thought! I cannot justify having such a poor screen in current handheld units. To me, being able to comfortably see the pieces is a must and if I had to choose, I would go for a PDA computer without blinking.
Though I like the Chessica, as a dedicated unit, I think it's too big to carry around but it does have it pluses.
... Again, no match for a Palm or PocketPC but I think its way better than the Novag ones.
Ismenio

Finally, I managed to organize a mini-match between Novag Star Ruby and Excalibur Chessica.

They've played five games, all in blitz or so-called sudden-death style.

Two have been played with 20 minutes on both clocks, another pair have been played with 30 minutes per game. In the fifth, each was given 45 minutes (in this last game, Novag got white).

For the Anglosaxon compulsive gamblers, I'll allow 24 hours in which predictions can be made and bets can be placed.

In the meantime I'll try to reconstruct the games using my somewhat confusing notes.

Best regards,

tom
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2005, 11:04PM »
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And by the way: My first computer-computer game with the Star I played yesterday . The opponent is called Resurrection. Time was one hour each.

And now I am struck with awe:

[Event "1 h per game"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "????.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Star Sapphire"]
[Black "Ruffian"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D10"]
[PlyCount "63"]

{16384kB, General.ctg. PentiumII
} 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e3 g6 5.
cxd5 Nxd5 6. Qb3 Nb6 7. Nf3 Bg7 8. Bd2 O-O 9. O-O-O Qc7 10. e4 Be6 11. Qb4 Rd8
12. h4 a5 13. Qc5 Bg4 14. Qg5 Bxf3 15. gxf3 Bxd4 16. Bf4 Qc8 17. Bh3 f6 18.
Bxc8 fxg5 19. Be6+ Kf8 20. hxg5 c5 21. Bc7 Na6 22. Bxd8 Rxd8 23. Rxh7 Rd6 24.
Bf7 a4 25. Kb1 e5 26. Bd5 Bxc3 27. bxc3 Rd7 28. Rxd7 Nxd7 29. Bxb7 Nab8 30. Bc6
Nxc6 31. Rxd7 a3 32. Kc2 1-0

Christian
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2005, 10:06PM »
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Quote from: Alain Zanchetta on May 30, 2005, 01:51PM   

Hi Christian,

I haven't a Star Sapphire... but your question about the UCB invites me to make some advertising for my FREE chess program for Pocket PC.
The latest version (not yet finished but pretty stable) of CEBoard can be connected to a Novag UCB.
See pictures at http://www.zanchetta.net/CEBoard/CEBoard21.htm
CEBoard hosts a Pocket PC Port of Crafty Special Edition, it is weaker than Pocket Fritz but still quite strong : it achieved 2390 with the BT2630 test on my Axim X50v... not very far from Resurrection 
I haven't played any match between Pocket Crafty and my Tasc R30 2.5 but Pocket Crafty has always beaten my Senator.

Best,
Alain



Alain,

this sounds great. I will be receiving my UCB soon and I will for sure test your freeware
Can it be run on an Ipaq 2210 (this is what I am using currently with PocketFritz2) ?

Concerning the speed problem StarSapphire/UCB: I downloaded the software already and I will see what can be done ....but it seems to be a little bit clumsy to use a PC only as an interface....but still.
Does anybody else know whether there exist converters or adapters 9600Bauds/19200Bauds?

Christian
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2005, 09:44PM »
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Hi Ismenio,

I tried to contact Luc Porchon (writer of the UCB driver) and Nick Biggs (mentioned in Luc's readme)  when I wrote CEBoard but did not have success (too old addresses).
A few weeks ago, I received an email from Nick Biggs and he kindly sent me his work on the UCB protocol ; unfortunately, he does not know my "missing" commands ; anyway, exchanging with him was very instructive and I have now new ideas to try in CEBoard.
I also tried to contact Novag without success 


Hi Christian,

I was thinking again to your problem with Star Sapphire and UCB. I think this is a speed problem : the Star Diamond communicates at 19200 Bauds and the UCB only at 9600 bauds. There is a program available (on novag's site ? on Niggemann ?) which can be run on a PC which can "link" two serial interfaces at different speeds. I don't know if hardware adapters smaller than a PC do the same thing.

Best,
Alain
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2005, 05:53PM »
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Alain,

How about trying to contact these folks to see if they can help with the protocol for the UCB?

http://www.tim-mann.org/extensions.html

Also, what if, we could build our own board with reed-switches and magnetic pieces? How complicated would that be to handle the board matrix into a protocol that could be used with your program? You know where I'm going with this!

Ismenio
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2005, 01:58PM »
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Very cool Alain! I wish I had a Universal board, then I would go for a PocketPC just so I could run CEBoard!
Great pictures by the way.

Ismenio
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2005, 01:51PM »
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Hi Christian,


Quote from: Endspielgott on May 29, 2005, 10:02PM   

P.S. It remains my question: Did anybody try (and succeed) to connect Star Sapphire and UCB???

I haven't a Star Sapphire... but your question about the UCB invites me to make some advertising for my FREE chess program for Pocket PC.
The latest version (not yet finished but pretty stable) of CEBoard can be connected to a Novag UCB.
See pictures at http://www.zanchetta.net/CEBoard/CEBoard21.htm
CEBoard hosts a Pocket PC Port of Crafty Special Edition, it is weaker than Pocket Fritz but still quite strong : it achieved 2390 with the BT2630 test on my Axim X50v... not very far from Resurrection 
I haven't played any match between Pocket Crafty and my Tasc R30 2.5 but Pocket Crafty has always beaten my Senator.

Best,
Alain
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2005, 03:11AM »
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Quote from: Mike Watters on May 29, 2005, 01:00AM   

... In fact these are from Pocket Fritz 1 and the small board screen is improved on this in PF2. On my Ipaq the screen is as crystal clear as you see it in these pitures. Having seen computers more or less from the beginning 1K of RAM etc I find Pocket PCs amazing things.
Mike

That's what I like about modern Apples: the screens seem to be painted in oils. A far cry from what my first Apple offered



... which is not exactly the 1K machine you mention. But I remember we had a few of those primitive machines, which could not even remember the programs one had so laboriously entered. The students were supposed to learn machine language on them, but since we had Apples (with very expensive diskdrives!), nobody used the Microprofessor - as this primitive contraption was called.

But I doubt if any chess computer manufacturer would ever come up with a screen like your IPaq. Only the screen and all that supports it would prably cost more than 150 euros ($125, 100). But prices go down all the time, don't they? So who knows ...

But for people who want to be able to play chess whenever they have a moment to spare and don't want to spend too many cowries, I think a very cheap palmtop is probably a better option than any of those modern handheld LCD devices, which take the imagination of a Picasso to play them.

Best regards,

tom
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2005, 03:08AM »
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Quote from: Ismenio on May 28, 2005, 07:09PM   

... I cannot justify having such a poor screen in current handheld units. To me, being able to comfortably see the pieces is a must and if I had to choose, I would go for a PDA computer without blinking.
Though I like the Chessica, as a dedicated unit, I think it's too big to carry around but it does have it pluses.
Replacing the battery is a snap! No screws to mess around with
.....
Ismenio

I must agree, Ismenio, your Sprint PDA when playing the Sicilian tends to evoke as much awe and admiration in me as the erstwhile Turk must have done to the Empress Maria Theresia and her courtiers in 1770.

The Free chess program is as nice as the Tiger program that I spent my hard-earned cash on. But it only seems to work on Color PDAs, which are a classier class than my simple Zire.

By the way, you shouldn't have mentioned the dedicated Chessica - I already possess plenty of the stuff called greed   But fortunately, I never saw them on eBay (so far).

There seems to be a lot of advanced technology involved in constructing lids for battery compartments. Fidelity and Excalibur never managed it, at least not in the computers that overpopulate my humble abode. In my view, Sicisys/Saitek deserves the prize for designing the best lids - although some of their earlier compartments could only be opened by Houdini. And their Mark 12 sported a rather original, albeit less practical compartment, from which the batteries tended to be catapulted once it was opened.

But enough idle prattle for today - I should go on with my Java Tutorial (http://www.xs4all.nl/~tluif/JavaCursus/EngJavaCursus.html)

Best regards,

Tom
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2005, 10:02PM »
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Quote from: Pippin on May 29, 2005, 12:27PM   

Its true that its the strongest Novag out there, but the gap down to the sapphire II in terms of playing strength, and again, from that down to the sapphire, is not very big. I was lucky to get the sapphire II for 14.50 on ebay, instead of the, what, 179 for the star.

But then, Im not relly a collector - cant afford it, being a student - so I tend to compromise somewhere between playing strength and price.


Pippin,

yes you are right the playing strength gap is small between the Star and the Sapphire II...but still...I got it new at a far more reasonable price (I guess in your strange and antiquated currency it must have been around 90). This was a good deal...

Christian


P.S. It remains my question: Did anybody try (and succeed) to connect Star Sapphire and UCB???
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2005, 12:27PM »
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Its true that its the strongest Novag out there, but the gap down to the sapphire II in terms of playing strength, and again, from that down to the sapphire, is not very big. I was lucky to get the sapphire II for 14.50 on ebay, instead of the, what, 179 for the star.

But then, Im not relly a collector - cant afford it, being a student - so I tend to compromise somewhere between playing strength and price.
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2005, 12:16PM »
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All.

I recently got a Star Sapphire, and beside the (known) flaws of this unit the most important thing for me is the playing strength...since this is (at my knowledge) the strongest Kittinger Computer (together with the Star Diamond), one should certainly have it. As a Kittinger fan of course...

I will use it with a external power supply only....

Did anybody try to connect this device with the Universal chessboard?

Christian
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2005, 01:00AM »
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Quote from: Overtom on May 28, 2005, 06:29PM   

Who couldn't agree with Mike?

I don't have the Sapphire, but I recently acquired the Ruby. As far as I can see, the screen is about as bad. And after a dozen games, I still need the manual to play with it. Fortunately, I havent't needed the batteries replaced, but I doubt if I'll do that because, as Mike rightly observed, two rather big screws need to be unscrewed to get to the batteries. So when will the screws start slipping because the plastic is worn out?
tom

P.S. Sorry about the poor lighting, but we have a problem getting sunlight here at 3AM.

Tom

From what I have heard the Star Ruby has longer battery life than the Star Sapphire. So at least you will not have to open that battery compartment so often.

I cannot take photos at the dead of night right now. The wife and daughter have gone off on a holiday in Slovenia/Italy and taken the digital camera with them. 

Anyway here are some representative pictures of what you get with Pocket Fritz running on an Ipaq.

This is the full screen board :-



and this is the small board where you can get the move list and up to 6 lines of evaluation :-



In fact these are from Pocket Fritz 1 and the small board screen is improved on this in PF2. On my Ipaq the screen is as crystal clear as you see it in these pitures. Having seen computers more or less from the beginning 1K of RAM etc I find Pocket PCs amazing things.

Mike

Mike
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #15 on: May 28, 2005, 07:09PM »
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3AM Tom? You look like someone I know!!

I think those pictures look pretty good. I would like to have one of those Novag but just for collecting sake and not to use them as a handheld computer for playing chess. And no way am I paying the current prices for them!
Funny that you compared them to the Mattel! I had the very same thought! I cannot justify having such a poor screen in current handheld units. To me, being able to comfortably see the pieces is a must and if I had to choose, I would go for a PDA computer without blinking.

Though I like the Chessica, as a dedicated unit, I think it's too big to carry around but it does have it pluses.

Replacing the battery is a snap! No screws to mess around with



I am a poor photographer, especially when it comes to taking pictures of screens but these should give us an idea of what the screen looks like. Again, no match for a Palm or PocketPC but I think its way better than the Novag ones.







My "Everyday" pocket computer is a Treo 600 since it is my Phone/Camera + PDA + Pager, running Palm OS. Here it is running OpenChess:





Ismenio
« Last Edit: May 28, 2005, 07:14PM by Ismenio » Report to moderator Logged

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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #16 on: May 28, 2005, 06:29PM »
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Who couldn't agree with Mike?

I don't have the Sapphire, but I recently acquired the Ruby. As far as I can see, the screen is about as bad. And after a dozen games, I still need the manual to play with it. Fortunately, I havent't needed the batteries replaced, but I doubt if I'll do that because, as Mike rightly observed, two rather big screws need to be unscrewed to get to the batteries. So when will the screws start slipping because the plastic is worn out?

I think the screen is better than Mattel's, but only slightly:



Compare this to a cheap Zire with the Tiger program. Much clearer!!



By the way, in a few weeks time I hope to receive the "Excalibur Talking Touch Chess" computer that is mentioned, from an eBay seller (who seems to think more than six weeks are a normal sending time). So by then I should be able to compare it with the Novag Star Ruby. I hope the screen is a s good as the picture suggests. The other handheld LCD chess computers by Excalibur have very unclear screens. I carried another one - just called "Touch Chess" - around to play with, but within a few months it stopped working - poor quality, just like many Fidelities 

So now I walk around again with a cheap Zire, which - at less than 100 euros - has a much clearer screen,  rechargeable batteries, a very nice Tiger program (about 25 euros)which is much more intuitive than anything that I've seen of Novag's or Excalibur's handhelds.

tom

P.S. Sorry about the poor lighting, but we have a problem getting sunlight here at 3AM.
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #17 on: May 28, 2005, 01:10PM »
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Quote from: Pippin on May 28, 2005, 11:26AM   

As for playing strength, whats up with Qf5+? 


And only 5 seconds to find it.

Even the game in the promotion photos was a fake.  

Mike
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #18 on: May 28, 2005, 11:26AM »
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As for playing strength, whats up with Qf5+? 
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Re:novag star sapphire hand held
« Reply #19 on: May 27, 2005, 03:34PM »
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Ismenio is polite. The Star Sapphire is a pig to play.

1. The screen is murky
2. The pieces are not easy to decipher
3. Batteries do not last long and you have to use a screwdriver on the battery compartment screws to change them
4. The menu system is not intuitive and takes much poking about to set the thing up, including an annoying trip through the menus just to turn the backlight on and off!

Basically you need to be a masochist. No collection is complete without a Star Sapphire.

For chess on the move I use a Pocket PC with Pocket Fritz 2 which is a joy to use.

Mike
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