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Nintendo DSi review



Should you spend $169 for the Nintendo DSi? Or will your current DS or DS Lite still do the trick? (Even better: Maybe you can win one. Click here to enter our drawing.)

THE LOOK

ds1-200x148The new handheld console is slightly smaller and lighter than the DS and DS Lite. It doesn’t come in a rainbow of colors (yet), just blue and black. The surface is matte, slightly grainy, not soft and smooth. That’s supposed to prevent fingerprints.

But it doesn’t look as sleek as, say, a white DS Lite with a glossy finish. The LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screen is a bit larger (by a quarter inch) and much sharper, too. You’ll notice that improvement right away.

That brightness comes at a bit of a price. While the battery lasts between nine and 14 hours, it doesn’t give you as much playing time as the DS Lite, which has up to 19 hours of battery power. Your DSi battery will last through about 500 full charges.

BEYOND GAMES

If you need a handheld device that does more than play games, this could be a good buy for you. First, you can use it as an MP3 player by loading one of those tiny SD (Secure Digital) cards in a slot on the right side. You can play tons of your favorite music—up to 32 gigabytes worth. But only iTunes type music and nothing else.

The small speakers are crisper and clearer than before. But they’re not that powerful. So use your headphones for the best experience.

By finding a WiFi hotspot and downloading a free Web browser, you can surf online. Unfortunately, the speed is pretty slow. Plus, you can’t view videos or play online games, at least right now. But it sure is useful for checking e-mail and news.

THE CAMERAS

The DSi sports two 0.3 megapixel cameras. The one on the outside of the case lets the DSi act like a camera for outings, travel and candid snapshots. The second camera, visible when you open the device, is used more for funny apps and playing games. Sure, the camera is fun. But couldn’t Nintendo have added at least the standard 1.3 megapixels to one of the two? What they’ve given you in camera resolution is so ’90s.

The system comes with a couple of software apps that let you change your photo in kooky ways. By manipulating the picture with your stylus, you can make your face funny, like you’re viewing it in one of those fun-house mirrors. You can also make the photo into kaleidoscope. Then, you can share it with your friends who have DSis. Another neat aspect of the photos is the ability to upload them wirelessly to the Wii Photo Channel.

DSi SHOP

You’ll also use the camera in small, inexpensive games in the DSi Shop online, in particular during a $5 Wario game. These are like the WiiWare games you might have purchased already via your Wii. They download in a minute or two. You’ll hear some pleasant music and watch Mario and Princess Peach fill a glass of water while you wait. There’s a lot more storage space in the DSi for games, too, four times as much as the DS Lite, a very nice 16 megabytes.

The DSi comes with 1,000 free points, which you can use in the shop for two or three games that range from 200 to 800 points each. When you buy points, 100 points equal $1. No game is over $10.

THE GAMES IN THE SHOP

Right now, the games are O.K. or above average. Aqua is like Tetris with an underwater diver theme. But you don’t use the touch screen to play. It’s definitely sweet, but the instructions are kind of hard to find.

WarioWare: Snapped looks like the best so far. It makes use of the DSi camera. The problem here is that my face wasn’t recognized by the camera because my walls are white, the same color as my face. When I tried this against a green wall, it also failed. Hmmm.

NO GAME BOY GAMES

The one huge negative about the DSi is that there’s no slot for your Guitar Hero World Tour peripheral, which used the Game Boy slot. It also means you can’t play old Game Boy games. That means no Pokemon, a big loss for gamers.

Nintendo feels that the old games aren’t being played as much anymore. If you still want that option, you’ll have to hang on to your DS Lite or DS. My guess is that Nintendo will begin re-releasing the old Game Boy games as DSi Ware so they can make more money on them.

While the DSi has a lot of enjoyable bells and whistles, you might already have some of these in your MP3 player or cell phone. The Internet and online options for the DSi are the true selling points of this system.

Maybe by the holidays, there will be a greater variety of DSi Shop games that work better than they do now. Unless you’re the kind of person who needs the newest thing right now — or unless you win a DSi from a cool Website like boyslife.org — the holidays might be a better time to consider buying the DSi.

Comments about “Nintendo DSi review”

  1. The BEAST says:

    The song and camera are AWESOME!!!

  2. The BEAST says:

    I think the dsi is a pretty good use of 160.00 dollars. The online web browser and shop are pretty tacky but hey, it cant get any better unless they make something bigger. I think it is really cool. :)

  3. drago says:

    all you guys are wrong
    just because the review said it was bad doesnt mean youre going to find it bad
    so try it

  4. mario/pokemon master says:

    P.S. i got a 2 gigabyte San Disk (S.D.) card for $12.00. if you want songs on the dsi thats the way to get it. I already have 30+ songs! :P :)

  5. mario/pokemon master says:

    hey guys you may think the dsi is a waste of $ i mean 169.99 is alot but (i dont know if this deal is still avalable) but i traded my ds lite for $70.00 off the dsi! but if you dont have wireless internet you #1:cant go to the dsi shop or go on the internet :( beleve it or not im writing this on my dsi ^^ :) :P

  6. rsdude9898 says:

    i have a ds lite and $225 plus a $25 toys r us giftcard should i save up for lax stuff or buy one?

  7. an says:

    I think the dsi is a waste of money.

  8. cruzer28 says:

    i have the dsi its really cool. because you can take pitchers and you can record sound and you can get games at the dsi shop. i think it is cool. if you have the money buy it

  9. The I am cool says:

    Lt Billson,no

  10. pikachu333 says:

    after reading the review, I was pretty upset. I thought it would be better, but if you really look at it differentially, it looks like a piece of junk.

  11. vertex138 says:

    to Lt Billson
    keep your money (yes, they are OK but the DS (lite) is still worth having.

  12. The I am cool says:

    Well, I have a DS Lite, but I don`t think about buying it for a few reasons, one it costs $169 $20-$30 $$$ more than the DS or DS lite, two because it has a 9-14 hour battery life, the DS or DS lite is a couple more hours longer.

  13. benny says:

    $169!

  14. Lt Billson says:

    I have a Nintendo DS lite, and 70 dollars, should I buy a DSi ?

  15. DJ again says:

    I am a fan of the DS lite and the company in general. I think the DSI as a faulty and may become the next virtual boy. a virtual boy was kind of like a 3D game boy with a chunky visor which wasn’t very appealing to the public. so… I would recomend not to blow your $$$ on a new version of the DS and save up on somthing that you really want like an electric guitar!!!!! tee hee!

  16. DJ says:

    Well, I was REALLY intrested in it before, but now it seems like nintendo just wants to make big $$$ so I’ll stick to my DS lite for now. Thanks for giving me info!

  17. buckeyeguy11 says:

    Heh that review helped me i was LITTARALLY ABOUT TO GO BUY IT!

  18. Nicko says:

    The DSi is an awssome thing to have but I think they need to lower the price.

  19. jjaroone says:

    to me I think that the dsi might be awsome and even though its over priced I still want it . i wonder why people say its soalor power and it has the internet also it can play music it may be cooler than I thought .

  20. Awesome says:

    the DSI looks awesome but i think you should just buy a PSP

  21. Fitey101 says:

    I caught Palkia with a quick ball! WHOO!!! Just a tip about Pokemon, if u say “catch it” and “gotcha” when the ball opens, ure catch rate increases. Ditto for pressing a right when the ball turns yellow.(when i said ditto i didnt mean the Pokemon)

  22. Fitey101 says:

    I still dunno about the DSI… If my mom and dad say i can’t get it i will feel like a great weight will have been taken off my shoulders because i have…expensive tastes. The pokemon games are pretty good and i wish the DSi had a gba slot. 169.99 is still a lot.

  23. JO JO says:

    I didn’t know that it could play music or surf the web, I’m still not going to buy and probably never will, but it’s still very cool. :)

  24. Dragooon333 says:

    DSI whoa i think its okay but i think id rather buy a kayak for water trips and pokemon is not terrible brandmaster

  25. werer4 says:

    Dsi is cool! Maybe I should put it on my birthday list! My friend has a dsi and he totally loves it. Only one complain, the price.

  26. game1448 says:

    also the surfing the web is cool

  27. game1448 says:

    dsi stinks but is kind of good bad because the price but good because of camra

  28. jakedude98 says:

    i want a dsi but i wait till the price is lowered ps i will get a psp first

  29. POKEMONER says:

    I am on the web right now with it but for all you people who dont have one IT’S SO GOOD!![the only way to get internet is to download it from dsi where]

  30. IMcoolman0 says:

    I got one.It types backwards sometimes.I only gt it for pokemon platinum

  31. troop741 says:

    You are right!

  32. Darrman says:

    I like the DS lite! NO DSI

  33. vertex138 says:

    the fingerprint thing is pretty cool. I also never knew that you can really play music on it to! now THAT is kinda worth buying! (well, it IS $169.99 though, whats with that?!?!)

  34. Newdewo says:

    I got the DSi and was excited at first. I traded my old DS lite for it. To tell you the truth it is a waste of money!!! dont buy it! If you have action replay, it does not work anymore. Nintendo has blocked it. Basically its DS (Games) or DSi (features) u can use the features of ur computer

  35. dp995 says:

    i used to think it was awesome. come to think of it,its a waste of money

  36. Tiger9 says:

    Don’t listen to any down puts on the DSi.

  37. Fireman says:

    It’s awesome. Maybe I can buy it! The screens are cool because they are fingerproof.

  38. dude says:

    I got a dsi because i lost my old ds lite the dsi are totally worth the $169.00 i paid for at best buy but i got it for my birthday

  39. monkeykiller says:

    the DSI sounds like a piece of junk!

  40. monkeykiller says:

    lol Gir. I totally agree it would make it alot easier to make it solar powered

  41. monkeykiller says:

    i totally agree it does not sound like what it was supposed to be and I think new or not they should lower the price. $169 gee whiz

  42. snoopy11 says:

    The DSi should lower its price to make it affordable to everybody.

  43. Brandmaster says:

    I don’t care that it dosn’t have a GBA slot. Pokemon was a terrible game anyway.

  44. eric d says:

    my son wants one, but he needs to get his grades up a little higher!

  45. trucks says:

    i agree with gamer they should lower it!!!

  46. gamer says:

    I think they should lower it so i can get one!!!

  47. cheeta says:

    i think they should lower the price!!!

  48. J Man says:

    i wouldn’t complain about the gba slot gone. so what if you can’t transfer your pokemon. that is crazy hate reason not to get the DSi. and if you want to play your gba games then just wait, i heard that they will put them and other classic handheld games on the shop

  49. Gir says:

    :( I think the dsi is better becouse you can surf the web it has good games on dsi ware psp is not better becouse its a finger print magnent if you ask me. I really think the dsi is better becouse the inernet is not that slow. To be honest i think that it is the best handheld systym ever. I really think that the graphics are better and you dont need the sound to high and its not that much work to pull out a DS and start playing pokemon.I think that some people really need to think about it. P.S How did you make it solar powered?

  50. dyls123456 says:

    After reading the reveiw I think the DSi Stinks

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