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Victor Reader Stream Plays Audio and DAISY Books for the Blind

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Victor Reader Stream Plays Audio and DAISY Books for the Blind

The Victor Reader Stream plays audiobooks in all special formats, including the new digital audiobooks from the National Library Service for the Blind & Physically Handicapped (NLS).

HumanWare

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.

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Pros

  • 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

Cons

  • 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.

Description

  • 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 Plays Audio and DAISY Books for the Blind

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.

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