The Axim X50v has many outstanding options. One of the most prevalent is the ability to have VGA output. This is only made possible by the video processor and the purchase of the Presentation bundle. The bundle includes a serial-VGA cable and the ClearVue software. Included in the box are a cable, CD and a quick start manual.
Setting up the Axim X50v presentation bundle is actually fairly easy. If you want, you don’t even have to install the software. All you need is a spare projector or monitor, your cable and the Axim X50v. With this you can mirror the screen of your Axim onto the monitor or projector.
The ClearVue software is optional and in some cases not very helpful. Installing the software is easy. Just click the setup icon and sync to your Axim.
Once the software is installed and the cable plugged in, you are ready to go. If all you want to do is show people what you see, you can easily enable mirroring from the settings window on your Axim X50v. You will quickly notice a severe reduction in the responsiveness on the Axim. Apparently the process of sending the video signal through the cable is very processor intensive. Once the mirroring is turned off the performance will return to normal.
The software that comes with the presentation bundle is slightly different then the mirror mode. It is actually 5 pieces of software. One for PowerPoint, one for Excel, one for Word, one for Acrobat and one for images. Also, instead of showing everything that is on your screen, it only shows the document or presentation. This is nice because you are able to fit more on the screen then what you see on the Axim. You can also change the resolution that you want the external device to be set at. The three resolution options available are 640 x 480, 800 x 600 and 1024 x 768. Obviously the higher the resolution the more you can see on the external screen. The only piece of software that I found useful was the PowerPoint one. It was the only one that could get the full document to go on my screen. I was using a 17″ monitor and tried every resolution. The Word, Excel and Acrobat programs could never get the full document to fit on the external monitor. The performance drain is the same as the mirror mode. You will not be able to do anything else on your Axim until you turn off the software.
One thing you will want to watch out for is the power drain. You can expect to drain your battery life much faster. The VGA cable does have a place to plug in a power cable and I highly recommend using it. Below is a chart comparing the battery times of the Axim with and without the mirror mode or ClearVue software enabled. Don’t forget to turn off the external video when you are done because it does not go off automatically. It will continue to drain your performance and your battery. It would be nice if the software and the mirror mode would turn off automatically when the cable was not plugged in.
|1100 mAh||2200 mAh|
|Mirror Off||2 hours 50 min||4 hours 38 min|
|Mirror On||1 hours 12 min||2 hours 26 min|
Personally I don’t think the Axim X50v is quite ready for external video. The processor needs to be stronger or it just needs a better video chip. Either way the device becomes practically unusable. Forget about trying to play a game or watch a movie with this. For the mobile business man that refuses to carry a laptop this would be a suitable option. So far the Axim X50v is the only PDA I know of that offers this. For $79 it won’t kill you even if you just want to experiment.
|JusTech'n editors' rating|