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HolidayBuyer's Guide
The Mintpad is a pocket-size portable media player that measures 3 inches across, 2.5 inches tall, and half an inch thick. The design is reminiscent of a Cowon D2 or the first-generation Iriver Clix, however, the scope of the Mintpad's features far exceed comparison.

Inside the Mintpad you'll find a Wi-Fi-enabled Web browser, 1.3 megapixel camera (photo/video), drawing pad, video player, music player, calendar, and more.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Liberated from its box, the Mintpad comes with a quick guide, USB cable, and a battery pack. You'll need to supply your own headphones.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
The Mintpad packs a lot of features and options onto its little 2.8-inch screen, making the built-in stylus pen a necessary accessory. Here you can also see the Mintpad's 1.3 megapixel camera, and next to it, a built-in speaker.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
The Mintpad's main menu lists its multitude of features in a rainbow of speech bubble icons. If the multicolored boxes aren't your thing, other user themes can be downloaded from the Mintpass Web site.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Underneath it all, the backbone of the Mintpad is Windows CE, which can be made to run a host of third-party applications. The unit we tested came personally loaded with extras from the manufacturer (Korea's Mintpass), including a Skype app. Unfortunately, we weren't able to pull up an onscreen keyboard to get beyond the log-in screen, so there's no telling if Skype would really work. Cool idea in concept, though.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
The Web browser included on the Mintpad is functional, if impractical. There's a lot of zooming involved, and the onscreen keyboard requires some accurate stylus pokes. In most cases, you'd be better off using the browser on your cell phone, where you at least have real buttons (or a larger touch screen) to key in text.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Can you enter text on the Mintpad? Sure, but you'd better break out that stylus pen and a boatload of patience.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
The Mintpad lists songs and albums with thumbnails of album art. FYI: this is not my music--I swear.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Along with an assortment of EQ presets, the Mintpad includes three 12-band custom EQs, as well.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
While playing music on the Mintpad, songs with album artwork can display the cover at full screen. Unfortunately, there's nothing you can do about the top and bottom getting cropped off.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
On the top edge of the Mintpad is a small, illuminated button that can be assigned to multiple functions. By default, a quick press of the button will activate the Mintpad's memo mode, while a long press will take you to the main menu. By diving into the options menu, you can change the button to trigger the Mintpad's voice recorder, music player, or other features.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Here's a feature we don't see much anymore on portable media players--a replaceable battery! The lithium ion battery pack promises 30 hours of music playback and 5 hours of video from a single charge. To the left of the battery you can see the Mintpad's microSD memory card slot, capable of accepting memory cards up to 16GB.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
The bottom of the Mintpad includes a hold switch and a socket for the included USB cable. The Mintpad can also be placed into an optional charging dock.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
On the right edge of the Mintpad you've got a standard 3.5 millimeter headphone jack and a power button. The opposite side includes a pinhole microphone for voice memos.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
It may sound like a silly feature, but the Mintpad's memo notepad is exceptionally well done. This hastily drawn tree gets automatically saved as a PNG file, where it can be transferred to my computer.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
Drawings on the Mintpad's memo pad can be rendered using any number of colors and pencil tools.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
A 1.3 megapixel camera on the back of the Mintpad can be set to record video or take still photos. A drawer of image options pulls out from the side of the screen, allowing you to set the image size, apply effects, and adjust the white balance.
Caption by / Photo by Donald Bell/CNET Networks
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