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Old 01-24-2024, 08:46 PM   #1
muuyo
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Device: Meebook M7, don't plan to expand
Thumbs up Review of the Meebook M7, for anyone else thinking about it

The documentation for this thing is pretty scant. There's short videos about it, but not many creators actually deep dive into it. If you'd like a video review of it, I found https://www.youtube.com/@sherry_ereader 's multiple videos on it very helpful. They have good neutral lighting of it and actually show off different features, thankfully. I've never reviewed much before, so apologies for any weird wording. Feel free to ask if there's anything you want more insight in - I'll reply as I can, as turns out emails weren't enabled on my account before this.
So, to start:
As an android device, you obviously have to interact with scrolling pages a decent bit, but in its fastest refresh mode there's a bunch of ghosting (like, a lot) but it's still very intelligible and that's what matters. Now, I'm mostly a manga guy (though I do plan to do more reading), so this review will be entirely based on that experience.
  • Refresh rate: it's great. 4 different settings, one being "refresh constantly, flash a bunch" which feels overkill; "normal" mode, which is pretty much perfectly fine for everything; "fast" mode, which is generally meant for scrollables; and A2 mode, which is as fast as possible but ghosts hard. I find A2 works great for just navigating around Android, and the dedicated refresh button makes the ghosting perfectly tolerable.
  • Contrast: I was worried about the blacks of the display, but these are great for two seperate reasons. First, the quick-access refresh rate changer also lets you change the contrast (which seems to be the minimum amount of pixels a line can be, consider it a universal outline), and the display is just plain good at viewing them. I haven't used this in sunlight, but when using it normally in a dark room it looks great.
  • Form: Feels good in the hand. Slightly big, so I somewhat recommend a hand strap (I plan to get one) but it's fine without one. Buttons can be noisy depending on the press angle, but they're not particularly unsatisfying - I've seen worse. They get a B.
  • Screen size: This is the big one. I was really worried about manga on a 6.8? incher, but this is not an issue. Do mind, I use this thing close to my face. My prescription sucks, around -7, but within my sight distance the text is nowhere near too small. Probably around 12 inches, it looks amazing. No complaints.
  • Backlight: My only slight niggle about the entire experience. Not that it's bad, mind you - the arrays of both yellow and white lights look great, and reflect pretty much perfectly uniformly on the screen - but the steps are a bit too big between the notches. I'm comfortable with 1 white 2 yellow, it's around the perfect brightness, but if you like it a bit darker the step down is big.
  • Battery: I'm not too active a guy, so I'm not taking it out or anything, but I've charged it around once a week(?) with around 2 or so hours of use a day. This is really variable, I haven't done any kind of measuring to my actual use, but I can say with confidence that it's perfectly fine. Maybe don't take it on a week long trip without a charger, but it should do a few days.
  • Reader-specific UX: I'm pleasantly surprised. Page buttons work great and have a bunch of options (including specific functionality per app!), it lets me set a folder of custom images for the standby screen (though I just have it locked to one), it lets me move around a calendar+clock on said standby screen between around 18 positions with different fonts and layouts, it's grand. Can even change how often the clock updates. Top marks here, I can't think of anything that annoys me.

Now, literally one complaint: The charging light is decently bright (at least in the dark), red, and on the front of the device, and assumedly un-disablable. Again, week long battery life, but a lack of foresight might be annoying. Port also feels a little fiddly, but hey, it charges, and that's all it needs.

Hope this helps anyone in a purchasing decision. I now actually enabled notifications, so if anyone has any questions to ask about it, feel free - I'll check it whenever I actually check my email.
Video below of my experience with manga on it (note: more detailed shaded grayscale stuff also looks great, I just didn't want to find a chapter with some.) Dorohedoro spoilers. This is in Normal refresh mode, Royal does the full screen every page, and Fast honestly looks pretty good even with something like manga panels. I just prefer taking the refreshes and having a bit less ghosting on shaded stuff, since that seems susceptible.
https://youtube.com/shorts/rQl0MC1UOvU
Overall, I've never used an e-reader, but I'm pleasantly surprised with how well tied together this thing is. Good marks.
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Old 01-25-2024, 09:51 AM   #2
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Minor nit: front-light not back-light.

The Meebook brand seems to be a reboot / relaunch / take-over / whatever of the Boyue Likebook brand.
Your M7 sounds very similar to my 7.8″ Boyue Likebook Mars Android eInk (also called Model T80D). It's got those screen/refresh settings, but no physical buttons apart from power. I have a 32G SD card in the slot.

It has a very good PDF viewer but a poor epub viewer so I installed KOReader apk directly via WiFi from Git. It also now has Musicolet MP3/Audio book player (BT or 3.5mm jack), also Libby, Borrowbox, Kindle Kobo and GooglePlayBooks apps as well as Lchess and K9 mail for real POP3 & IMAP & SMTP email without it going via Google's servers (the stock Email on Android).
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Old 01-31-2024, 08:15 PM   #3
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How does the build quality ‘feel’ to you? For example, any flex in the backing if you push in on the back panel? Does the screen appear very ‘recessed’ under the glass or relatively flush? Do the buttons feel snappy vs., mushy? The power button?

How do you find reading text on it? Thanks so much for your review, it’s excellent!
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Old 02-03-2024, 07:57 AM   #4
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It feels tough and good - the buttons are slightly wiggly, but otherwise everything feels great. No flex at all.
As to the screen, there's AFAIK only one layer (for touch) and it's very flush. Buttons are a nice click (and not loud, unless pressed completely head on), power button requiring the right amount of force and being equally nice and clicky.
Reading text feels great - anything with black and gray backgrounds can ghost a little, but it's only been an issue for certain manga, so text should be perfectly fine. I haven't read too much plaintext stuff on it, but it looks nice and it feels good to read. No complaints.
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Old 02-16-2024, 07:42 AM   #5
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Since the latest firmware my Meebook has started hanging in Borrowbox at the "counting pages" stage. It just refuses to do anything else after that.

Has anyone else had this problem? The trouble is that since I downloaded the new firmware, even a factory reset doesn't solve the problem.
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Old 02-16-2024, 08:51 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lanark1982 View Post
Since the latest firmware my Meebook has started hanging in Borrowbox at the "counting pages" stage. It just refuses to do anything else after that.

Has anyone else had this problem? The trouble is that since I downloaded the new firmware, even a factory reset doesn't solve the problem.
Ah, latest Meebook FW, rather than latest Borrowbox App? Is it set in Application Preferences to be "Full Page"?
Does Google Playbooks work? There are free books and comics to download to test that.
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Old 02-16-2024, 09:15 AM   #7
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The kindle app and Google Books both still work fine, it's just Borrowbox. Which is really annoying because I bought this to be able to read all my ebooks in the one place using eInk rather thank a tablet.
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Old 02-21-2024, 07:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lanark1982 View Post
The kindle app and Google Books both still work fine, it's just Borrowbox. Which is really annoying because I bought this to be able to read all my ebooks in the one place using eInk rather thank a tablet.
Borrowbox is currently broken on my Mars too. It's the only thing I bought it for. Working on regular Android.
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