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Old 02-04-2013, 04:55 PM   #1
Rizla
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How do the 3 front-lit e-reader models compare?

I understand that there are three models: Amazon, Nook and Kobo. How do they compare? I assume that all of them have their problems at this point this being fairly new tech.
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Old 02-04-2013, 05:13 PM   #2
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This might help.
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Rizla View Post
I understand that there are three models: Amazon, Nook and Kobo. How do they compare? I assume that all of them have their problems at this point this being fairly new tech.
What makes you think there are only three? There are a few more, and the number is growing!
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Old 02-04-2013, 07:06 PM   #4
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What makes you think there are only three? There are a few more, and the number is growing!
That's true, there's the Onyx Boox i62HD Firefly (Angel Glow) and the Cybook Odyssey HD Frontlight. Are there any more? PocketBook has showed prototypes of front-lit color eInk, but I don't think they actually have any front-lit stuff out do they?
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Old 02-04-2013, 08:26 PM   #5
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This might help.
Oh, not these clowns again. They crank the Glo to full brightness in a black room, then whinge about the results of that misuse. Then they don't fully know how to use their ereader, then complain because the Kobo is respecting the fixed display settings of the particular book they're using.

(I'm also curious - are they ignoring the colour blotches on their Kindle, or unable to see them? They're lauding the Kindle's "perfectly white and even screen", but that's not what their video shows at all.)
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:01 AM   #6
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This might help.
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Originally Posted by meeera View Post
Oh, not these clowns again. They crank the Glo to full brightness in a black room, then whinge about the results of that misuse. Then they don't fully know how to use their ereader, then complain because the Kobo is respecting the fixed display settings of the particular book they're using.
Amusing to note that in this video the reviewer finds that the Kindle has bluer light and less even lighting, and notes a large dark splotch on his, which is the opposite of those guys.

Also agree with meeera on the problems with the first video. They did post a follow-up video where they try to find the "sweet spot" in lighting for both of them, but don't really re-compare any of the things that were affected by having the Glo at such a high light level. One of them also states that the high level on the Glo might be good if you wanted to read in a pitch black room...even though you want to use lower light settings the darker it is, not higher settings.
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Old 02-05-2013, 03:09 AM   #7
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I'm more interested in user reviews than 'pro' reviews. I don't find them reliable. I'm particularly interested in understanding the difference in the lighting of the big three. As I said, I understand they all have their problems. I've heard about the odd colors and uneven lighting at the bottom of the Kindle. I was wondering how the other two stood up to that. I didn't know about the Onyx. I'll check that out. The Cybook is a questionable purchase if you are not in Europe.

I'd be particularly interested in hearing from people who have owned / handled more than one device, particularly under different lighting conditions.

I read now that the Nook screen is a bit fragile.

Last edited by Rizla; 02-05-2013 at 03:49 AM.
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:59 PM   #8
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Don't know anything about the Onyx & Cybook but in terms of the quality of the screens alone, the Nook appears to be the least impressive out of the Nook, Kindle, Kobo (screen not quite as clear, leds are at the top instead of the bottom which can make them more noticeable). Probably down to theirs being the first to be released, the Kindle & Kobo have improved things a bit with their subsequent releases.

The Kobo has the most consistent, uniform screen, and it uses a grey band along the bottom to further hide any shadows from the leds, but if you are light sensitive you might find it has a slight bluish tint and is a bit too bright.

The Kindle appears to have got the quality of the light slightly better, its maybe a bit warmer than the Kobo? However, you have to get one with a 'good' screen, otherwise you might see blotches and some shadows from the leds. There is some variation between different Kobo's but not as much as there appears to be with the Kindle.

Edited to add - the fact that most people who have bought a lighted reader wouldn't go back to a non-lighted one (see thread in general forum) should tell you enough. Most agree they are far better than using a standard e-reader with a clip-on light, and its really only if you are expecting LCD light quality that you will be disappointed (though there are of course exceptions!).

Last edited by soulfuldog; 02-05-2013 at 01:05 PM. Reason: add extra comment
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Old 02-06-2013, 08:49 AM   #9
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The Kindle appears to have got the quality of the light slightly better, its maybe a bit warmer than the Kobo? However, you have to get one with a 'good' screen, otherwise you might see blotches and some shadows from the leds.
Every PW has small shadow cones at the very bottom of the screen from the LED lighting, when used in the dark. They are below the reading area, and I simply don't consciously notice them.
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:14 PM   #10
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That's true, there's the Onyx Boox i62HD Firefly (Angel Glow) and the Cybook Odyssey HD Frontlight.
I've pretty much settled that I would prefer/go for the i62HD Firefly, but now travel plans makes the Kindle Paperwhite/Kobo Glo available to me for less than half the price of the Onyx device after shipping, tax and customs fee, so even when superior features (audio, TTS, better HW specs) and opensource (customizability) is very enticing, I'm not sure I can be that idealistic ...

As for features that seems better with the Kindle: Syncing of notes/highlights and bookmarks -- at least for the content bought through Amazon. (It is also synced for "personal content", but not easily available from a Mac/PC, just directly on the mobile/kindle devices.)
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:46 PM   #11
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I've pretty much settled that I would prefer/go for the i62HD Firefly, but now travel plans makes the Kindle Paperwhite/Kobo Glo available to me for less than half the price of the Onyx device after shipping, tax and customs fee, so even when superior features (audio, TTS, better HW specs) and opensource (customizability) is very enticing, I'm not sure I can be that idealistic ..
I am also considering the Firefly instead of my Paperwhite but one of the things that is stopping me is the lack of slim covers (the molded back ones) available for the Firefly as I really hate the thicker more generic covers with either corner straps or the bezel being covered completely.
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Old 02-16-2013, 06:57 PM   #12
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Oh, not these clowns again. They crank the Glo to full brightness in a black room, then whinge about the results of that misuse.
Yeh I notice that too, and they comment on the contrast being better on the Kindle. I'd give them more respect if they attempted to get the light levels as close to the same on all three and then commented on the contrast.

I wish I wish some of the reviews would also review common uses for ereaders. General boot up, store access, page turns etc are great, but many many people sideload DRM free ebooks, how about (especially with the Kobo) show how a side loaded epub works? Show all font options etc, show syncing furthest page read etc.
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Old 02-24-2013, 12:11 AM   #13
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I didn't buy the Nook backlight because 1/2 of 500 people said they did not abuse it and still it had pinholes in the screen lighting coming through and it was more than annoying... it's broken. This has been documented now... I saw a techee take it apart and compare it to the STR and it uses a totally different screen material and backing.

People who bought it took it back 1/2 the time and I am not buying it because I live in very rural area and don't want the hastel... I am buying STR for price, dependability and waiting for better quality lighting screens, technology that doesnt break so easily
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Old 03-06-2013, 05:17 AM   #14
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I played with a Kobo glo and was impressed with the lighted scree. The illumination was very even, no discoloration or shadows or anything light that. The source of the light along the top was very discrete and not noticeable. I will say that I only used it in lighted store conditions. Overall, I was very impressed. It was slightly blue, but that didn't bother me.

It certainly looked a lot better than some of the images I've seen of Paperwhites, but I have never handled a Paperwhite so I can't judge. Also the Kobo (and the PW) handles pdfs poorly, so that's a show-stopper for me. Also I understand the Glo screen (like the Nook) is fragile so I wouldn't buy one.

However, the good news is that the front-lit tech is looking practicable but I will be waiting until the various issues are ironed-out. Overall, I'd like to see a Sony with a lighted screen as good as the Kobo. That way I'll get the best of all worlds. I would consider a Nook is they make the screen less fragile as I can root it and have the software flexibility I want.
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Old 03-06-2013, 05:20 AM   #15
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It certainly looked a lot better than some of the images I've seen of Paperwhites, but I have never handled a Paperwhite so I can't judge.
The problem with PW screen images is that most of the shots showing so-called "problems" are taken in the dark with the lighting at maximum intensity - a completely unrealistic situation which will probably show blemishes in any screen. All the PWs (probably about a dozen in total) that I've seen personally have been absolutely fine in the circumstances in which they're actually used.
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