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SnapNPlay T102 Review
By Robert Zach
OK I'll admit it - I have officially converted my Visor Prism to a Palm gaming platform until the m515 appears.
The SnapNPlay module converts the Visor into a GameboyTM-type appliance!
The unit consists of a D-Pad (directional pad) and two game buttons ("A" and "B"). Also there are four buttons across the bottom. Left to right are the home (launcher), menu, shock control, and power buttons. There is also a small red LED that indicates "shock" status.
By now you realize the most unique feature of this game pad for the Visor is the shock capability, which vibrates during gameplay like a Rumble Pack. The SnapNPlay requires a single AAA battery to operate the shock feature. In use, I found this product to make games much more playable and enjoyable. The shock was an added bonus, but as I'll discuss, it has some issues.
Unfortunately, this product suffers from unpolished driver issues. It requires manual intervention so as to not interfere with the normal operation of the Visor. The driver also takes over all serial functions. This means that you can't beam while using the keyboard, and the driver must be manually disabled before you can HotSync.
As for the shock feature, the way it works today is that it is triggered by intercepting the audio. The intent is to have shock coincide with things like explosions. In practice, games with background sounds cause the shock mode to run continuously. Fortunately, that third button from the left disconnects power from the spinning shock motor!
TT Tech's website claims that a new driver is in development that will allow a threshold to be set for the audio. This would allow you to tweak the level of audio that triggers the shock feature. This will be very helpful, and make this feature much more usable. I can't wait - and hopefully they'll fix the plug and play issues as well!
The driver does allow for customizing key mapping. It would also be nice to have category access, so you could set these up ONCE for multiple games. See the shots below for the driver details.
Today the T102 will work quite well with many games, and it does enhance their playability. See the Game Compatibility List for details. I would like to see more work done on the drivers before I suggest you run out and get one.
I'd like to thank RipTide Accessories, Inc. for providing this product for our scrutiny and awareness. RipTide is listed as a US WorldWide distributor for TT Tech. Please see the TT Tech site for current information on where to buy a SnapNPlay if you are interested.
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