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Old 12-11-2014, 01:31 PM   #1
martinrebas
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Best ereader for language learning?

I bought a Sony PRS-T1 a few years ago; people said it had the best dictionaries, but it turned out to be extremely buggy and I'm now looking to replace it.

I was planning on buying the Kobo Aura H2O (I liked the epub and CBZ/CBR support as well as the large size and high resolution), but as people have written that Kobo devices can be buggy, and the dictionaries are so-so, I'm now leaning toward a Kindle Paperwhite 2. (The Voyage costs $316 where I live, which is a bit more than I'm prepared to pay.)

As far as I've heard, you can buy excellent dictionaries for the Kindle, and I should be able to convert my epubs to mobi with Calibre and transfer them using USB. (Right?)

My questions are:

Would buying the Paperwhite 2 be a good decision?

How good are the Kindle's included monolingual dictionaries? EDIT: I tried out the ones included in the Kindle Android app, and if it's the same ones, then they're good. There are even Chinese-English and Japanese-English dictionaries that I could download for free! Does anyone know if they're included in the list of dictionaries on a Kindle Paperwhite 2? On the Kindle app, their names are "中文-英语" and "日本語-英語".

Last edited by martinrebas; 12-12-2014 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 12-11-2014, 01:46 PM   #2
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Being able to look up inflected words depends on how well the dictionary has been constructed. I would check reviews of the various dictionaries you are interested in.

I think once the dictionary has been downloaded to the kindle, you can set up which dictionary to use for which language. I believe Kindle will also pick an appropriate dictionary, depending on the language encoding of the book and dictionary.
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Old 12-11-2014, 01:53 PM   #3
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Being able to look up inflected words depends on how well the dictionary has been constructed.
Well, I'm also asking about the included, monolingual ones; it seems likely that someone here has used them, and unfortunately, ereader reviews seldom go into any detail regarding dictionaries.
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Old 12-11-2014, 08:59 PM   #4
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I've heard good things about the included dictionaries.
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Old 12-11-2014, 11:18 PM   #5
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The Kindle has a vocab-builder that stores the words you look-up. That sounds handy for language learning.

Re: dictionaries, I don't think anything handles liaisons in French. It should be okay with conjugations though. FWIW the Sony dictionaries were excellent. But the Kindle allows custom dictionaries.

If you're good with technology, you could consider an open Android device like the Onyx which allows you to add an e-reader app of choice. Most of them interface with Goldendict, and with that you can add whatever dictionaries you want.
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Old 12-12-2014, 08:29 AM   #6
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I tried out the dictionaries included in the Kindle Android app, and if the Kindle PW2 has the same ones, then they're good. There are even Chinese-English and Japanese-English dictionaries! Does anyone know if they're included in the list of dictionaries on a Kindle PW2? On the Kindle app, their names are "中文-英语" and "日本語-英語".
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Old 12-12-2014, 08:58 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martinrebas View Post
I tried out the dictionaries included in the Kindle Android app, and if the Kindle PW2 has the same ones, then they're good. There are even Chinese-English and Japanese-English dictionaries! Does anyone know if they're included in the list of dictionaries on a Kindle PW2? On the Kindle app, their names are "中文-英语" and "日本語-英語".
The physical Kindle has the same range of dictionaries as the apps - no matter whether you're using a Kindle reader or an app, the dictionaries are downloaded from Amazon's servers in the same way. The Kindle has by far the best dictionaries of any reading device.
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Old 12-12-2014, 10:13 AM   #8
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From a non-native English speaker, I'd get a Kindle for sure. I love my Kobo to bits, but the included dictionaries are craptacular, and you can't add any easily. Kindles have excellent included dictionaries, and if you're not satisfied with them you can purchase additional ones. Plus, the vocabulary builder, which I love. Plus, the WordWise feature, which I'm not a fan of but is aimed at English language learners.
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Old 12-12-2014, 11:33 AM   #9
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The physical Kindle has the same range of dictionaries as the apps - no matter whether you're using a Kindle reader or an app, the dictionaries are downloaded from Amazon's servers in the same way.
That's true for all dictionaries currently available for download in the Kindle for PC version, but not for the latest Kindle for iOS/Android apps, which also come with monolingual and bilingual Dutch dictionaries, which are not (yet) available for download from the Amazon cloud.
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Old 12-12-2014, 06:24 PM   #10
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Thank you for your help! I ordered a Kindle today.
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Old 12-16-2014, 09:40 AM   #11
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I got my Kindle today, but it seems to download dictionaries automatically and not give me any choice when there's more than one. I got the Chinese dictionary I wanted but unfortunately the monolingual Japanese one. Is there any way to install the Japanese-English dictionary that I was able to download for the Kindle Android app?
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Old 12-16-2014, 09:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martinrebas View Post
I got my Kindle today, but it seems to download dictionaries automatically and not give me any choice when there's more than one. I got the Chinese dictionary I wanted but unfortunately the monolingual Japanese one. Is there any way to install the Japanese-English dictionary that I was able to download for the Kindle Android app?
When you have more than one dictionary for a language, you can set the order of dictionary lookup in the options.

Can't help you with the question of downloading a specific dictionary, I'm afraid. Kindle CS should be able to help you out.
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Old 12-16-2014, 09:56 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by martinrebas View Post
I got my Kindle today, but it seems to download dictionaries automatically and not give me any choice when there's more than one. I got the Chinese dictionary I wanted but unfortunately the monolingual Japanese one. Is there any way to install the Japanese-English dictionary that I was able to download for the Kindle Android app?
If your Kindle is registered, you can trigger the download via your Amazon account page:

Digital Contents > Manage Your Contents and Devices > Books > Dictionaries & User Guides > Progressive Japanese-English Dictionary (プログレッシブ和英中辞典第3版) Shogakukan > Deliver

The dictionary will be automatically downloaded to your Kinde the next time you connect to your Amazon account via Wifi.

Last edited by Doitsu; 12-16-2014 at 09:59 AM.
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Old 12-16-2014, 09:57 AM   #14
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It seems that it suddenly decided to download the other dictionary too, a couple of hours after downloading the first one! Weird, but now everything works.
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Old 12-16-2014, 09:59 AM   #15
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Great . Happy reading!
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