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Controls and Ports

As far as controls go, the bottom, 3in touch-screen remains very similar to before, but the included stylus is now metal and telescopic. It also comes out of the back rather than the side.

The X, Y, B and A buttons maintain the same size and location, but their now-glossy surface makes it easier to move between them. If anything, they also feel crisper than on the previous DS models. Much the same goes for the D-pad and triggers.

One welcome addition is an analogue stick, which Nintendo calls the Circle Pad. Its rubberised surface makes it comfortable to hold, and we found it to be very accurate. It's certainly a huge improvement on the Sony PSP's equivalent.

Start and Select are now joined by the new Home button, and though they might look like touch-controls, they're actually still physical buttons. They're easy to press and distinguishable by feel, but we preferred the older implementation. Power is now a button rather than a switch, which is suitably stiff that pressing it accidentally is unlikely to happen.

To the left we have a volume slider and SD card slot. Nintendo representatives were unable to tell us whether the card reader accepts SDXC.

On the right you'll find a wireless switch with accompanying LED and you can toggle the 3D switch from here too, just in case your eyes never wish to behold the horror of the third dimension.

Around the back is a power input, which unfortunately is - as far as we can tell - a proprietary connector. The stylus compartment is hidden behind the white holder. At the front there's a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Build quality throughout felt very solid, and the console didn't get particularly warm to the touch.

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