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Old 01-15-2014, 09:15 AM   #76
Cyberman tM
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(I rewrote the posting to be less haphazard. It still is, but in a better way, I think.)


So, I finally decided to buy one and got it yesterday.

The delivery truly was FAST. A mere hour after I hit the "purchase" button, the package was on its way (or at least the swiss post then began tracking of the package).
If it hadn't been held by austrian customs, I guess I would have got it a few days after it was sent.
BTW, I had to pay customs tax - about 20 Euro, and they noted that it was wrongly labelled somehow - nothing serious, but I wanted to mention it.

The package, as you can see on the screenshots(taken with phone), is very plain - but in a good way, IMO.
Apart from the USB cable (standard A to micro B, as far as I can tell), there are no accessories.
I also purchased the leather jacket because I guess it won't fit into the old (and by now rather raggedly) dvd-case-made-eReader-container.

The leather jacket is unimpressive - the reader fits fine and there are holes for the buttons and connections, but that's about it. There is no latch or anything, so the cover simply lies on the reader and is ready to flip open by a mere shake.

The feeling of holding it is somewhat weird to me - I guess it's the dimensions - rather short and wide, especially compared to my old Kobo - the display should be the same size, though.

The display has lighting which is very nice and can make reading much easier - you can regulate how much brightness you want.
Weirdly, when the device is working, the light flickers. Highly annoying and I wonder if it isn't dangerous to people who suffer from epilepsy. (It seems to be worst with websites that try to refresh the page often.)

Apart from that the display is very good, better than the Kobo Wifi (no surprise, the Wifi is rather old).
Interestingly, the display is NOT always redrawn entirely, but rather only the sections that actually need new content. (Though I dare say this is not consistently so.)

As you know, it's possible to install android apps, so that's what I tried first. There is no market, so you have sideload the APK files - which is rather bothersome since Google doesn't seem to want this - it's rather hard to get the APK files by now.
I haven't found a way to register the device with google, so you can't use "wishlist" or such. Visiting the google play site in the browser works, but is of no use as far as I can tell.

Among others, I installed CPU-Z because I wanted to know what hardware is in there. Here's what it has to say:

SoC:
ARM Cortex-A8
Cores 1
Revision r3p2
Clock Speed 102MHz-1,01Ghz
GPU Vendor Vivante Corporation
GPU Renderer GC800 core

System:
Board: Imcosys
Hardware rk29board
Android version: 2.3.1
Kernel Architecture armv7l
Total Ram: 174MB
Root Access: Yes

The system is android, and feels VERY raw. I'm sorry to say so, but it doesn't feel as if the developers worked with love on it. Maybe they weren't allowed or there was no time.
The first thing I read when I plugged it into my computer was a default text talking about how I just connected my phone(!) to my computer...

There are several minor issues I encountered (and forgot already, sorry), but they all are software problems that I'm sure can and hopefully will be removed with future updates.

It is a strange feeling to use an android system and not have the customary hardware buttons - there is no home button as such, but the Esc/Home button (hardware, lower left) works like this.
Back and More(three bars) are represented as software buttons on the top, in the android status bar - which apparently can NOT be pulled down.

BTW, what this device is sorely missing is a "busy indicator" - quite often I find I'm not sure if I really pushed a button, or if the device doesn't support the button or is merely loading.
There is no hardware light on it, and unless the app itself supports it, no other indication of the device working.

The default screen is split three-way, top is your last read, middle, is the library, bottom are the apps.
Library and apps can of course be opened to full-screen.
Also, there is an explorer app so you can move around the internal disk - which is a nice way to create a hierarchical library and still have the "show all books at once" option.

Despite the device having 4GB of internal memory, only about 2.something are available - the rest is hidden. To me that is acceptable (I do think it's misleading to speak of having 4GB memory when only half of it is available), since I don't think I'll ever use up that much memory.
Besides, there is a slot for an SD-card, so that's always an option.

I've tried the delivered MP3 player today and I think it's OK. I didn't do much with it yet, but I saw it supports playlists and is intelligent enough to gather all the MP3 files and play them at random. That will do for me.
It is not intelligent enough to continue playing MP3 files in the same directory if you only double-click one of the files, though. You have to start the app for that.
Interesting side-note: when you pull out the headphones cable, the music continues playing through the built-in speaker.
Which is different from how my phone acts (player shuts off when cable is removed) - to me it's a bit annoying, but I guess others will like it. No big deal anyway.
Speaking of the speaker - I'd say it sounds OK. I didn't expect much from it, and the sound didn't make my ears bleed, so I'm fine with it.
Sound through headphones was alright - no worse than my phone, I'd say.

I used the MP3 player for most of an hour and I'd say the battery lost about a fifth of it's charge. Perhaps a sixth, it's hard to tell since there are no numbers (maybe there's a setting for that) and the symbol is IMO rather small.


Now for some weirdness:
I successfully installed Boinc on it, but was unable to run a WU for WCG - the reason being that there isn't enough memory available. Only 87MB of RAM are free for the WU, and VINA needs at least 250.
I suppose it might be possible to fake RAM with some other app, but I'm not sure that would be worth it, wise or sane.
(Note: BOINC - distributed computing, many small WUs make up a large project; WU - Work Unit, a task for your client to crunch; WCG - World Community Grid, a project using the BOINC infrastructure; VINA - a sub-project of WCG, trying to find medical drugs that might be worth looking into)



Also if you're still reading and wondering: yes, I see the irony of buying a new eReader and trying anything BUT reading on it.
I'm planning on doing so, but right now I don't feel like reading. The display looks nice, though, so I'm sure it'll work fine.
It supports searching and reaction time looks OK.

[edit]
Couldn't sleep last night so I decided it's a good time to do some actual reading on the eReader :-)

Overall impression: Very nice, with some love it would be great.
I'm comparing it to my experience with the old EB600 and the Kobo Wifi. Neither had light, nor any of the fancy stuff I'm seeing here (I think).

The device can of course change the font size - several are available, up to XXXXXXXL (didn't count them - lots of Xes). The font size apparently is NOT absolute - i.e. it depends on the source material how big it'll end up.

The lighting works very good, there even is a special "night mode" for the display where the black/white is inverted - i.e. white text on black background. (With light enabled, the black also glows, of course.)

Page turning works either by the buttons on the side (info: the silver bar between the up/down buttons is easy to recognize when the lighting is on, even in total darkness - the illumination from the screen is enough to see it), or by simply touching the screen left or right.
Touching the screen in the middle will bring up the menu bar, where you'll get the "More" button for the various tools that are available in reading mode.

You can set bookmarks, search for text, change font size, enable automatic page turning (interesting idea, unfortunately you can't set an arbitrary value), translate words, and add/export notes. Probably even more.
I haven't really tried any of that stuff yet, sorry. I did use the search function and found it to be somewhat clumsy - maybe it's me that's clumsy - because it isn't clear which button you have to press to continue searching without closing the enter search window. (You have enter on the keyboard and OK in the search window.)

Very nice is that Footnotes (at least in ePub) are supported. However, this support is somewhat lacking, it's one of the issues where some love would have been appreciated.
In detail: when a footnote appears on a (display) page, an arrow appears in the status bar, notifying you of a footnote.
The footnote number itself is highlighted. When (or if) you press it, you get sent to the corresponding text.
Clicking on the "back" symbol or using the "ESC" button will get you back to the previous area.
The problem however is that the footnote number is rather small - so if you have rather large fingers, you'll have troubles actually pressing JUST the number.
Instead the system (trying but failing to be intelligent) will assume you want to turn the page, or show the menu bar.
A long-press doesn't seem to work, unfortunately.

Another nice "feature" of the reading mode is that you have a constantly visible battery symbol. (Something that the Kobo Wifi sadly lacks.)


[edit] A bit more here
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Last edited by Cyberman tM; 02-03-2014 at 01:00 PM. Reason: Finally did some actual reading on the device :-)
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Old 01-25-2014, 04:44 PM   #77
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I got mine, too, and I can mostly echo what Cyberman posted in his fairly complete review. However, the frontlight of my device isn't flickering. I had that issue with the Kobo Glo on the lowest light settings, but it went away at 2%. The V6l is fine, though, so it's not an inherit problem of the model per se.

A tiny issue is one "dead" pixel, though I think it's more of a "hole" where light shines through. I nearly sent it back, but they lowered the price a little and that was a decent deal, so I kept it. I also wasn't charged an import tax. (Germany)

I haven't had time and muse yet for fiddling with the Android stuff, and it sounds discouraging that I probably won't be able to get Calibre Companion and Moon+ Reader working on it, which was the main reasons why I had pre-ordered it.

Size-wise, the bezel/case is a little wider than that of the Odyssey HD, and noticeably wider than the Kobo Glo, but it does have more features than either of those (MP3, headphone jack, and in case of the Glo also the physical page turn buttons), so that is expected. After I broke my Glo, I have been using the Odyssey (which unquestionably has the worst software of any reader I have ever used, but one gets used to it), and that'll remain my main reader for now.

I don't regret getting the V6l, since I do like to have a front-lit backup reader, but if I could (and might) get Moon+ and CC to work on it, it would easily become my main reader. If I had to buy something entirely new right now, though, I think I'd get the new Aura or the Pocketbook Lux 623. (Or a PW2, if I were an Amazon customer.)
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Old 01-25-2014, 08:41 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by Mivo View Post
However, the frontlight of my device isn't flickering.
Doesn't happen always - I can't put my finger on it (because then the page would be turned), but I sometimes notice it - the room is completely dark, though, so it's easier to notice.
(Also, it only happens when the light is on the lowest possible setting.)

Quote:
I haven't had time and muse yet for fiddling with the Android stuff, and it sounds discouraging that I probably won't be able to get Calibre Companion and Moon+ Reader working on it, which was the main reasons why I had pre-ordered it.
If you get the APK, why shouldn't it work? If the developers of the app don't offer the APK, there are websites who somehow are able to get the APK for you. I think they're trustworthy.

I've downloaded and installed a card game, just for fun. It starts and you can try to play, but the way the screen is refreshed is horrifying on eInk...

[edit]I wonder how long it takes until someone produces a Cyanogenmod for the ImcoV6l :-)
(Or any other android derivate.)

Last edited by Cyberman tM; 01-26-2014 at 04:51 AM.
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Old 01-27-2014, 08:05 AM   #79
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I was very interested to read your comments on this device, Cyberman tM and Mivo, thank you both.
One specific thing that I am interested in is the brightness of the light; at the lowest setting how bright is it? The kobo glo, for example, I find much too bright to use in a dark room, whereas the aura (6") is fine. Could either of you give a comparison?
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:30 AM   #80
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The lowest frontlight setting of the V6L is lower than that of the Glo. Substantially so. I always felt the 1% setting of the Glo was still incredibly bright to a point where reading in a dark room was unpleasant. On the V6L, the minimum level (it has 50 different ones, goes up and down in steps of 2%) only illuminates the screen faintly. Of the three frontlit readers I have, it has the most comfortable light (followed by the Odyssey, with the Glo generally being way too bright).
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Old 01-30-2014, 06:56 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mivo View Post
The lowest frontlight setting of the V6L is lower than that of the Glo. Substantially so. I always felt the 1% setting of the Glo was still incredibly bright to a point where reading in a dark room was unpleasant. On the V6L, the minimum level (it has 50 different ones, goes up and down in steps of 2%) only illuminates the screen faintly. Of the three frontlit readers I have, it has the most comfortable light (followed by the Odyssey, with the Glo generally being way too bright).
Thanks for that, it sounds really good
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Old 02-03-2014, 12:56 PM   #82
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A minor update to my previous review. A few small nuisances, all of them software.

*) Font Size. There is a commendable lot of them, but IMO too few small settings. You get S, M, L, and a bunch of X...L. I have yet to use anything beyong M and S, and today again S was almost too small but M definitely too large.

*) Hardware Buttons in landscape mode. Maybe it's me, but I think they're switched wrong. I've turned the book 90° left (both directions are possible, very nice), and I have to push the left button to get to the next page (on the right side).

*) Night reading mode.
A very nice idea, it inverses the usual black/white scheme. So you're reading white letters on a dark background - ideal when reading in a dark room.
Not so ideal, however, is that the reader often behaves like a badly wrought dynamic HTML site - i.e. constantly refreshing for a second or two, and completely ignoring the dark scheme.
I know I'm rather thin-skinned when it comes to flashing lights (fortunately it's just a pet peeve, nothing serious like epilepsy), so I found it to be QUITE annoying when I read in a dark room and suddenly the screen started flashing white.

Also, there is one hardware nuisance which I'd love to have an explanation for. The rest button.
I know it's a common theme, but why does a reset button have to be so small and inset that it is almost impossible to reach it without specialized equipment? I understand you don't want to push it accidently, but if it's within a groove of say 2 mm across, with a deep sitting button (but a rubber cover above, so you can still reach it with any suitable implement) that should be fine?
Matter of fact, I recently had the enjoyment of spending over half an hour musing about such things because I accidently pressed a button during bootup and had nothing on my with which I could press that damned button.
(Fortunately I still have Cribbage on my cell phone, so I had something to waste my time on during the train ride.)
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Old 02-07-2014, 06:55 PM   #83
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Question How and where to purchase? ImcoV6L

Cyberman tM & Mivo et alia
First of all thanks for the excellent reviews , really appreciated which makes the following all the more frustrating.
Do you happen to know where to purchase this eReader [if you are not in Switzerland,Germany, Austria or USA], I am a resident of Sweden and tried to purchase it from This store* but they have refunded and said they only sell residents in Switzerland, I emailed them and asked where to purchase from in that case, but no response! so far (5 days and counting). Not good omen re support and customer interaction in case of problem.

BTW This store does seem to have the reader but have no covers and may or may not ship to outside Germany[i.e Sweden], ...plus more expensive(110€).

So how to purchase both the reader and cover being in Sweden without too much hassle?

*Notice this is the makers store
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Old 02-08-2014, 01:25 AM   #84
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It's odd that they didn't respond to you at all. I received answers within minutes or hours when I had questions about my order and the "pin hole" problem I mentioned. You emailed them at contact@imcosys.com? (I wonder if it's a language issue? My exchanges were in German.)
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Old 02-08-2014, 05:22 PM   #85
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Yes, that is the email I used when contacting them, but perhaps it is a language issue as you are saying, I used English [don't know German].
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Old 02-18-2014, 01:13 PM   #86
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I haven't had time and muse yet for fiddling with the Android stuff, and it sounds discouraging that I probably won't be able to get Calibre Companion and Moon+ Reader working on it, which was the main reasons why I had pre-ordered it.
Try: http://www.androidpolice.com/2013/12...tors-and-more/

Once you have Google Play, you can download anything that meets the requirements of your device
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:38 AM   #87
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[edit]I wonder how long it takes until someone produces a Cyanogenmod for the ImcoV6l :-)
Given how long it's taken to get a CM for my fairly widely distributed phone, I'd bet on never :-( Sorry.
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:58 PM   #88
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update:

I have at last purchased the ImcoV6L, its good but not as good as my PRS-650.
The new reader is slightly faster on the initial loading/starting of a book but it has an annoying tendency of always reloading the book as if the first time rather than starting the book instantly the second time you open it.
The frontlight this is my first FL reader so no idie hows kobo et alia compare to this one, but the texts contrast becomes seriously degraded the moment I turn the lights on. I thought it would be the other way around i.e. increased/superior contrast with the light. Major let down.
With lights off the contrast is slightly better than the 650 and with the superior resolution a significant improvement over the 650 in text readability. Major win.
How to use a plugboard with it so I can use reasonable collections/series info in the title of the book. Just like the 650.
Did anyone try and succeed installing Calibre Companion and FB reader?
Btw how to reliable change text/font size? it is a hit and miss affair for me so far..long tap, must be a button or something which leads to last point
Where can i find and English instruction manual, the one that came with the unit is an-anemic and at that only German.
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:20 PM   #89
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Old 02-23-2014, 04:32 AM   #90
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Originally Posted by Selzernium View Post
Btw how to reliable change text/font size? it is a hit and miss affair for me so far..long tap, must be a button or something which leads to last point
I'm not quite sure what you mean with long tap?
To change text size you need to call up the menu - a tap in the middle of the screen (when reading a book) should show the menu bar at the top. Then the right-most button will open a new menu where the first entry should be the text size.
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