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Old 07-04-2020, 02:16 AM   #1
Hrafn
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Boox Poke 2 vs InkBOOK Prime HD

My Boox Monte Cristo 4 has become increasingly flaky, so I'm looking for a replacement. I could simply buy the MC5, but given that the MC4 only lasted about 18 months (and my prior Kepler Pro, from the same Kepler/MC series, didn't last very long either), and required manual install of an App Store, I'm looking for something different.

I'm after a light/slim 6" 300ppi reader, with a flush bezel and android. I would consider a(n especially light & svelte) 6.8/7", but those seem to be thin on the ground these days. I suffer from Cubital Tunnel Syndrome, so the lighter the better.

The only apps I'm going to be installing are Alreader & SyncMe (WiFi syncing app).

I'll mainly be using it for reading at home (where I'll use it without a case), but will occasionally want to put it into a coat pocket or backpack, so a removable case will be needed.

I'd prefer page-turn buttons, but I know that they're becoming increasingly rare (plus I've never come across buttons on my previous reader that I've been completely satisfied with).

I'm in NZ, but am quite happy to source purchases from anywhere in the world (e.g. Europe, US or Asia).

My main contenders currently seem to be the Boox Poke 2 & the InkBOOK Prime HD.

Poke 2
Pros
  • Apparent build quality
  • Comes with App store
  • Newer Android version
Cons
  • No page turn buttons
  • No micro-SD card slot (minor: I do prefer to keep my books in a separate volume from my OS)
  • Small battery size (minor)
  • Stock, stick-on case would be useless for me (so I'll have to buy a third-party case)
  • More expensive

Prime HD
Pros
  • Page-turn buttons (but I have heard that they're somewhat flimsy)
  • Micro-SD card slot
  • Larger battery
  • Better case
  • Cheaper
Cons
  • Build quality questions (I have heard that the screen lacks a backplane, and so is more vulnerable to torsion damage)
  • No App store (at least in the reviews I've seen, this may have changed)
  • Older Android version (minor: I'm only going to be installing 2 apps anyway)

Any help clarifying these issues, or any suggestions of comparable readers that I haven't evaluated, would be helpful. I'd be especially interested in anybody who has first-hand experience with both of them (so can do a direct comparison).
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Old 07-04-2020, 10:13 AM   #2
cellaris
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I use Prime HD with AlReader (in an old version adapted to Boyue) and KOReader, and it works very well.

But the Poke 2 is much better in performance, screen quality and battery life. It's powerful, fast, accurate and lightweight. And it has an application optimization system that lets you use virtually any application.

I personally recommend the Poke 2, but it all depends on how you want to use the device. To use AlReader, Prime HD is all you need. And much more economical. On the other hand, AlReaderX (the new version of AlReader that I use) requires a higher version of Android.
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Old 07-04-2020, 02:49 PM   #3
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Quote:
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But the Poke 2 is much better in ... screen quality ...
Is that based upon personal experience or reviews? If the latter, could you provide URLs? I've been looking for reviews that talk about screen quality, but mostly they just rant on about its video-playing mode, so I'd be interested for more details.
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Old 07-04-2020, 04:32 PM   #4
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I always talk about my personal experience. I have both devices. About the Poke 2 you can see different opinions in this German forum...

https://forum.alles-ebook.de/thread/...r-reader-raus/

About the Inkbook Prime HD you can see my comments in a German forum and a Spanish one.

https://www.e-reader-forum.de/t/expl...7/post-2309863

https://www.lectoreselectronicos.com...hlight=Inkbook
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Old 07-05-2020, 03:07 AM   #5
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Quote:
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I would consider a(n especially light & svelte) 6.8/7", but those seem to be thin on the ground these days. I suffer from Cubital Tunnel Syndrome, so the lighter the better.
I can only advise you about Tolino Epos 2.
It's light 195 g, 8 inch display, it has buttons,
and is based on Android 4.4.2, which enables additional application installations via a simple additional installation without changing the system.
I myself use it with Calibre Companion and the AlReader in reverse landscape format in two columns.
The device is water-protected and the display is unbreakable and it has 2 usable buttons.
The only disadvantage in my eyes is the power button, where there is no tactile feedback.
The price is also much higher.
I also own the Poke2 and use it when I'm on the go.
The Tolino Epos 2 is the device I use to read in bed.
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Old 07-05-2020, 07:19 AM   #6
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I can only advise you about Tolino Epos 2.
It's light 195 g, 8 inch display, it has buttons ....
Yes, but it's also wider than the Poke2 is tall (159mm), which would make it somewhat of a strain to hold in one hand.

I've taken the plunge and bought the Poke2 off the Boox Shop. Wish me luck.
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Old 07-12-2020, 05:19 PM   #7
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You'll be happy, I'm sure.
My prime hd has bugs and there hasn't been any updates in awhile. I suspect there won't be any more. The poke2 doesn't have buttons but is superior in every other way.
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Old 07-14-2020, 07:14 AM   #8
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You'll be happy, I'm sure.
On arrival:

With the hardware, yes.

With the firmware, not so much.
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Old 07-14-2020, 12:53 PM   #9
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On arrival:
....
With the firmware, not so much.
Why ?
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Old 07-14-2020, 01:36 PM   #10
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Why?
1) The Google Play Store implementation is half-baked, leading to a 'device is not Play Protect certified' error if you open Google Play Store (which the 'Enable Google Play' option does automatically), if you don't select an obscure Settings option to "bind the device to your Google Account" first. If not done in this less-than-obvious order, it requires a reboot and potentially a "6-24 hours" wait for this error to go away (and I only found this out after a query to Boox).

2) The Android implementation is neither sufficiently similar to vanilla Android as to allow previous experience with that to guide you, nor sufficiently pared down that it is easy to find everything. Apart from easier access to WiFi in the P2, I prefer the Android layout on the Kepler Pro and Monte Cristo 4.

3) In spite of the fact that Boox apparently has spent some time on further development of the 'Library', it is still, to my mind, unusable. "Total:Bookshelves(0) / Books(663)" yields an un-navigable mess. Yes, I could move the books one at a time into the "Bookshelves" (which is unclear whether they are the same thing as the "Sub-libraries" mentioned in the manual), but it really isn't worth the trouble, particularly as I prefer a two-level hierarchy (Author then Series). They should have the Library use either folder-hierarchy, book metadata, or similar to automatically create a navigable structure to your book collection.

4) The NavBall is, in my opinion an abomination -- clumsy, a visual distraction and frequently in the way. I turned it off, as soon as I realised I could access "Back" & "Home" through the Status Bar.

5) The Status Bar is only slightly less clumsy. And the menu it opens has most of it taken up by sliders for the Frontlight (which I never used on my last 2 eReaders) and sound volume (in spite of the fact that it is only able to play audio if connected to a Bluetooth device -- which I have no intention of doing).

Needless to say, I will spend as little time as possible in it, and use it solely as a means to move between AlreaderX & SyncMe (I'll use AlreaderX's internal 'Open File' option to navigate to the next book to read).

Yes, some of these opinions are idiosyncratic, but I was stating my personal reaction to my new eReader. So there's really no need for anybody to tell me how wonderful they think these software 'features' are.

Last edited by Hrafn; 07-14-2020 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 07-14-2020, 01:40 PM   #11
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Well, those who use the standard software did not understand the possibilities of Android
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