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Old 05-06-2009, 06:45 PM   #16
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Could be really interesting for technical books... much more lighter, and thinner... but the size of the device... likely not to fit my handbag !
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:50 PM   #17
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The photo of the new device next to the print 8x11 is especially telling about the poor contrast quality of the display. Given a choice between the two would anyone seriously choose to read from the Kindle 3?

Now, I've seen the Kindle 2 and I was stunned how poor the display was. This one looks no different other than bigger.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharker View Post
Hey, all! I thought it would be good to have a thread where we can post links to good pics and video of the Kindle.

As I live in New York now and am currently unemployed, I was able to swing by the press conference this morning where Amazon unveiled the new Kindle DX. Here are some pics and video I took. I'll write up my personal impressions a little later.

Video:


Extended clip: Demo of the Kindle DX.


Short clip: Note taking/highlighting in a non-pdf textbook.


Short clip: Menu selection scrolling, screen response time.


Short clip: Zoom mode for images in a newspaper.

I apologize for the crummy camera work in the above. I'm not a very good cameraman, and this was my first try doing something like this.

Okay, pics!

Attachment 28531 Attachment 28532 Attachment 28533 Attachment 28534Attachment 28535 Attachment 28536 Attachment 28537 Attachment 28538 Attachment 28539 Attachment 28540

Enjoy!
JHarker,

Thanks for your coverage on this. Are you able/willing to comment on the screen quality compared to your iliad?
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:12 PM   #19
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Hey, everyone! I've finally got a few minutes, so I'll try to give my impressions of the Kindle DX. I got to hold one for a few minutes at the press conference today, so I have had some actual hands-on time.

First, let me summarize my remarks by saying that this is the first e-reader I've seen that I would replace my iLiad with. Now, the iRex iLiad has many good points, and the iRex DR's screen is still a tad bigger than the Kindle DX, but any comparison just stops right there.

The Kindle has built-in cellular wireless, a MUCH longer battery life, great UI, more format support, and now with the DX, a large screen. And it's $370 cheaper. The iRex DR has... umm... a stylus.

Up until this point iRex had the lead in hardware, which somewhat compensated for their really poor software/UI design. Now Amazon has matched if not exceeded iRex in the hardware department, and with a much slicker UI and more software features to boot. The gauntlet has been thrown down. The next 12 months should be VERY interesting in the ereader market.

Okay, enough editorializing. Let's have some details.

In terms of the basics, the DX is supposedly comparable to the Kindle 2: same screen material (2nd-gen e-ink), same screen refresh rate, similar battery life, Whispernet cellular wireless functionality.

Physically, the DX is nice to handle. It's fairly heavy, a little heavier than I found comfortable. The press material says it's 18.9 oz., or just a bit over one pound. Probably not something you want to hold up with one (or two) hands for a long time. The screen is apparently glass-based, not plastic based (as some have inquired), but the thing feels so solid and stable that I wouldn't worry much about breaking it, as long as you're reasonably careful. I would definitely buy a cover, though.

The screen itself is 150 dpi, 9.7" diagonal, which translates to 8" by 5.5", almost exactly half of a standard letter-sized page. This means that pdfs can display at 100% zoom in landscape mode, and most are very readable even in portrait mode. I was not able to see it used with any two-column academic journal articles, unfortunately. But my impression is that they would be just as easy to read.

To compensate for the large screen, Amazon also added a "words per line" option to the config menu. In reflowable texts, this essentially allows you to set the column width to be narrower than the screen width. Personally, I would love to see a "two column" option as well, but it didn't appear to be there.

Speaking of pdfs, the DX has native pdf support, as I'm sure you know by now. This appears to be seamless, and the user interface is exactly the same as for any other document. I don't know about annotation or note taking support for pdfs; I know that's been a popular question.

Another big new feature is auto-rotate. The DX has a built-in accelerometer. If you rotate it 90-degrees, after a short pause the page flickers and reorients itself. All re-zooming or text reflowing is handled automatically. Any of the four orientations work for this: 0, 90, 180, 270. The auto-rotate also works seamlessly with any kind of document: pdf, newspapers, textbooks, even the web browser. Finally, there is an option in the config menu to lock the orientation to any angle, so you can lay it flat and not have it constantly flipping on you.

Speaking of the web browser: according to the Amazon spokesman, web browsing on the DX is still free and you can still visit any site with it.

In the documents I saw, both textbooks and the newspapers were in reflowable file formats, not pdf. Presumably (since Amazon has agreements with textbook and newspaper publishers) this would be the norm. There are several ways to browse a newspaper: by section, by summary (headline & lede), or page by page.

Let's see, what else. The keyboard. I'm not a huge fan of the key action. I haven't ever used a Kindle (1 or 2), but these keys are shaped like small tic-tacs, and the action is much softer and less clicky than the keys on my Blackberry. On the other hand, I don't imagine one would be doing a heck of a lot of typing on the thing. And as you can see from the pictures, the keyboard is much more condensed (and less obtrusive) than on the other Kindles.

On the whole I think that Amazon is rapidly becoming the Apple of e-readers. I mean that in the best way possible. There are definitely still a few annoyances, and the lack of ePub support is disappointing, but on the whole I was extremely impressed by both the hardware and the UI design.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:18 PM   #20
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A couple added/clarifying comments: The DX screen material is exactly the same as the Kindle 2. They have identical contract and nearly identical refresh rates. This is 2nd-gen e-ink, which I personally think is significantly faster and has better contrast than my iLiad v1.

The contrast difference in the Kindle vs. 8.5x11 picture I posted is a bit exaggerated. That picture was primarily for size comparison. In real life the contrast difference was not as pronounced to me.

I think people tend to separate into two groups: people who think that e-ink has intolerably poor contrast, and people who think the contrast is perfectly fine. I'm in the latter category. If you're in the former, then the Kindle DX won't change your mind: it's exactly the same.

Last edited by jharker; 05-06-2009 at 07:21 PM.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:28 PM   #21
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Oh, a few little tidbits from the presentation:

First, apparently this subsidizing deal with newspapers is only for people who live where you can't get regular paper delivery. That limitation seems a little silly to me.

Second, Jeff Bezos made a startling (to me) claim: On Amazon, many of their books are availble both in paper and as e-books for the Kindle. Bezos said that in April, looking at just those books, e-book sales accounted for more than 33% of their total sales. That is, for books that are available in both forms, one e-book was sold for every two paper books.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:31 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharker View Post
Second, Jeff Bezos made a startling (to me) claim: On Amazon, many of their books are availble both in paper and as e-books for the Kindle. Bezos said that in April, looking at just those books, e-book sales accounted for more than 33% of their total sales. That is, for books that are available in both forms, one e-book was sold for every two paper books.
that is a very interesting piece of information ! much higher than the numbers we heard previously, and very encouraging for ebooks as a whole. although after seeing the sales figures for the beginning of the year, i'm not sure i'm very surprised.

thanks again for this report, i'm really glad you were able to go and get all these details.
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:59 PM   #23
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How is the file management on the DX? Is it a flat file system like the K1 & K2?
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Old 05-06-2009, 08:17 PM   #24
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Old 05-06-2009, 08:20 PM   #25
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Once again, great work, jharker.
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Old 05-06-2009, 11:20 PM   #26
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Thanks for a fine and well-illustrated report - probably the best description of the DX yet on the Web. I, too, would be interested if you would compare the strengths and weaknesses of the DX to the iRex.
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Old 05-06-2009, 11:52 PM   #27
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Thanks for the great report. Looks like an interesting device. When the screen is rotated, the buttons are then in the wrong place. Having duplicate buttons on the top wouldn't be aesthetic, but I'd probably like to have them there.

This is a device I will keep my eye on.
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Old 05-07-2009, 12:36 AM   #28
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The Kindle DX Vs. The Plastic Logic eReader

At least four companies, including Hearst and News Corp (NYSE: NWS). have big-screen e-readers in the works in the U.S. But only two, Amazon.com (NSDQ: AMZN) and Plastic Logic, have provided specs on their devices. Here’s how Plastic Logic’s eReader and Amazon’s Kindle DX measure up:

http://www.paidcontent.org/entry/419...logic-ereader/



Bottom line: The eReader is lighter, thinner and has a touch screen, but the DX undoubtedly has the big-mo because of Kindle’s dominance with e-readers and its earlier release date.
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Old 05-07-2009, 01:06 AM   #29
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Great concept but absolutely ugly device! Why can't Amazon learn from Sony's design?

So far, Sony PRS-700 and PRS-505 is the only where I've seen that includes a cover that acts and fits like a book cover. The cover is hooked on to the reader via two holes on the edges of the reader as opposed to the typical four elastic strap across four corners.

And what about getting rid of the keyboard and make it touchscreen?
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Old 05-07-2009, 01:25 AM   #30
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Great concept but absolutely ugly device! Why can't Amazon learn from Sony's design?

So far, Sony PRS-700 and PRS-505 is the only where I've seen that includes a cover that acts and fits like a book cover. The cover is hooked on to the reader via two holes on the edges of the reader as opposed to the typical four elastic strap across four corners.

And what about getting rid of the keyboard and make it touchscreen?
Yeah my impression from watching that video is that the DX is in huge need of a touch screen interface. However, that would add cost and kill battery life which Amazon, I'm sure, didn't want to do...

Well assuming they use Wacom technology. Otherwise they would kill screen clarity like the prs-700
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