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1: no, it has a High definition amp. its increases clarity in the sound. only the 800 has the radio at this point.

2. the 900 has a gumstick battery slot. you can screw on an external battery case, which can hold any kind of battery (AA), whether it be Li-Ion, ni-mh or alkaline.

3. it is the same for all units. the bottleneck occurs at the writing head.

4. no one else in on board with the hi-mds. im not sure about std-mds tho.

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The following method obviously undergoes unnecessary digital-analogue-digital conversion, but is easy and sound quality is not compromised too much:

1. Try plugging one end of your 1/8" stereo minijack (male to male) cable into the headphone out of your MD player, and the other end into the line-in on your PCs soundcard. Play your recording at full volume (with all sound effects turned off) and adjust recording volume using Windows' built-in volume control. Record to your favorite sound editing software, I prefer Cool Edit Pro. That way, you can save your recording in any format you like.

To keep everything digital, this is the only method I've come across:

2. Buy a stand-alone MD deck that has digital outs, using your coax digital cable, or optical cable (depending on your MD deck digital-out type) record to a stand-alone CD-recorder that has the requisite digital inputs(one of those philips two-deck numbers works for me). Again, turn off all sound effects on your MD deck when playing your recording.

The pain in the ass associated with these methods makes me despise Sony for disabling digital out capability via the USB connection. Sony should at the least include an optical out on their portables... Hopefully the data storage potential of the hi-md units will allow some creative owners to circumvent this lameness.

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