So, my birthday isn't until the 8th, but my wife surprised me this weekend by giving me my gift early - the new PSP. (She probably wanted to stop me from talking about it so much. ;)

Let me just say - this thing is beautiful. I mean, seriously. Comparing the PSP to the GBA is like comparing the Super Nintendo to the PS2. Speaking of the PS2 - while the PSP is not the same level of quality as the PS2, it is darn close. I've heard others compare it to the Dreamcast, and I'd say that is probably pretty close.

The video quality is quite good. The audio quality is shocking, especially with headphones. Movie quality is excellent. (My wife got the package with Spiderman 2 included.) The networking works great. (I have to say - any device I can plug in an IP address to is just plain cool.)

How are the games? My wife picked me up Dynasty Warriors. This is not a game I would have picked, but I'm glad she did as it is quite cool, although the manual is one of the worst written manuals I've seen in my life. (Little side story - I got my degree in English, but the main focus was in Technical Writing.)

That same day I went pick up Wipeout Pure. I've heard about the UI design of this series before, but to see it in action is something else. The game is fun and has an awesome soundtrack.

You may hear folks talk about the load times. Yes, these games have load times. However, the most I've seen so far on my two games is about 5 seconds. Considering the level of detail you get, 5 seconds doesn't seem like long at all.

One small negative note - the PSP is covered in buttons. Unlike the GBA, you have to spend a second or two positioning your hands, or at least I do, but I have huge hands, and I'm clumsy, so I tend to be a bit anal about making sure I'm holding it right. (Drop one digital camera in your lifetime and you will be careful as well.)

There are already a few cool PSP hacking sites out there: PSP Hacks, PSP-Vault.

So in summary - I gotta say - I think this thing has legs. We may finally have a competitor to the GameBoy. Now I just have to pick up a one gig memory card so I can copy Star Wars to it. ;)

Edited: When I compared the PSP and the GBA above, I meant to say that the GBA was like the SNES, and the PSP was closer to the PS2. Sorry about that!