The Bottom Line
The Victor Reader Stream is audio playback's "birth of the cool," and its sleekness, versatility, and convenience will make it in the print-impaired reader's technology arsenal for years to come.
- Compact: the Stream measures 4.6 by 2.6 by 0.9 inches and weighs 6.0 ounces
- Intuitive number-pad navigation
- Plays wide range of file types, including: .TXT, .HTML, WAV, MP3, WMA, FLAC, SPX, and BRF
- Easy-to-use recorder is great for interviews and class lectures
- Ability to mark text with electronic bookmarks with voice annotations and easily navigate among them
- Nuance Vocalize audio quality makes reading long texts tedious
- DAISY text files lack search and spell-check capabilities
- Only about 20% of all NLS and Learning Ally cassette books are available digitally.
The Victor Reader Stream is a pocket-sized digital player for specially formatted audiobooks used by print-impaired readers.
The Stream provides access to DAISY (Digital Accessible Information System) books from Bookshare and Learning Ally.
The Library Edition supports and has a cartridge holder for the new National Library Service (NLS) digital audiobooks.
A digital decryption key must be installed on the Stream to play NLS books.
Users can download audiobook files from their PC onto the Stream through a USB cable.
The Stream organizes books into separate "shelves" for Talking Books, music, podcasts, text files, and notes.
Guide Review - Victor Reader Stream Library Edition
When I first saw HumanWare's cell-phone sized Victor Read Stream, I had to have one. Most special-format book players are soulless squares of plastic. But here, finally, was a product audio learners could wield with the same pride as any gadget-happy consumer.
The Stream immediately consigned my microcassettes to the sock drawer; its simple navigation, internal mic, and digital sound quality made interviews (in-person and phone) easier to record, organize, and retrieve. I spent a month using the Stream to listen to books (including The Call of the Wild, which came preloaded on it), music, podcasts, and text files.