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Old 04-18-2019, 01:17 PM   #1
730
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Trying to decide which device to buy (KPW 3 vs 4)

I'm thinking of buying a Kindle Paperwhite, but not sure whether to get 3 or 4. 4 is more expensive but has new small hardware features, along with some software improvements, but 3 is cheaper (and it seems some people think the new screen on 4 is worse compared to 3's). I also want to be able to jailbreak/hack it (I especially want to make homebrew).
Which one do you recommend? Can custom software for 3 provide you with the same functionality they added on 4? Is the Vocabulary Builder feature available on either? Also, I'm planning to read books on both English and Japanese, I won't have any trouble with that, right? Language isn't locked to the device, is it? And can you have dictionaries for both languages?

That's all.
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Old 04-18-2019, 02:41 PM   #2
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The software is the same on both. The only features that you might be thinking are "software" related on the PW4, namely audio books over bluetooth and inverted mode, are actually hardware related differences between the two models.

Jailbreaking may depend on the firmware version. I've never jailbroken mine, so I can't give you any more advice than that.

Both devices should have the same language support and vocabulary builder.
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Old 04-18-2019, 02:59 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 730 View Post
Can custom software for 3 provide you with the same functionality they added on 4?
No. Amazon reduced weight, made the bezel flush with the display and added water resistance. That's not something you can change with software.

Thus far, the PW3 is still receiving firmware updates so most features you get on the PW4, you also get on the PW3 (except for night mode, I think. I don't use it so never really explored jailbreak options for that).

As far as jailbreaking, there's no guarantee you'll be able to do a closed (software-only) jailbreak on either. Highest software jailbreakable firmware on PW3 is 5.9.6.1 and on PW4 is 5.10.0.2. Some brand new PW4s still ship with this but others already ship with 5.10.1.3 which hasn't been cracked yet.

If you're okay with physically operating on your Kindle, serial jailbreaking is always possible on the PW3.

I have yet to hear of a successful serial jailbreak performed on the PW4 (Android layout).
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Old 04-18-2019, 03:27 PM   #4
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I can't speak to jailbreaking. I've never done that with my Kindles. But I do have the Paperwhite 3 and the 4 and I can talk about those. I still use both regularly and while they are different I find it hard to care much about the differences. I think I have a small preference for the PW4 but I'd be happy with either one.

I do have a couple of concerns about the PW3's though. I prefer the cellular versions for a couple of reasons. The new one is 4G and the old one is 3G and with 5G coming I'm not sure how long 3G will remain available. Probably as long as the Kindle will last but maybe not. So the future is more certain with the new one. If you get the Wifi version that won't matter, of course.

The other concern is with the ones they're selling as Wifi versions on Woot are the international 3G versions and that 3G can't be used in the USA. I'm not sure where you are but in the USA but in the USA I'd be concerned that that 3G would always be trying to find a tower and drag the battery down. I know some devices do that. I'm not sure this one would but I'd be nervous about that.

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Old 04-18-2019, 03:36 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovejedd View Post
As far as jailbreaking, there's no guarantee you'll be able to do a closed (software-only) jailbreak on either. Highest software jailbreakable firmware on PW3 is 5.9.6.1 and on PW4 is 5.10.0.2. Some brand new PW4s still ship with this but others already ship with 5.10.1.3 which hasn't been cracked yet.
I guess I can ask the seller before buying (even better if it's something I can verify with the serial number).

Quote:
Originally Posted by barryem View Post
I do have a couple of concerns about the PW3's though. I prefer the cellular versions for a couple of reasons. The new one is 4G and the old one is 3G and with 5G coming I'm not sure how long 3G will remain available. Probably as long as the Kindle will last but maybe not. So the future is more certain with the new one. If you get the Wifi version that won't matter, of course.

The other concern is with the ones they're selling as Wifi versions on Woot are the international 3G versions and that 3G can't be used in the USA. I'm not sure where you are but in the USA but in the USA I'd be concerned that that 3G would always be trying to find a tower and drag the battery down. I know some devices do that. I'm not sure this one would but I'd be nervous about that.
I live in Argentina, I didn't even expect 3G/4G to be a thing that worked so it's fine. Would rather go for Wi-Fi only anyways because of the price.
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Old 04-18-2019, 04:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 730 View Post
I guess I can ask the seller before buying (even better if it's something I can verify with the serial number).
Serial numbers do not reveal firmware version numbers. If the box is sealed, there is no way to know the version number. Knowing the version of others in the same batch would be worth looking into.
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Old 04-18-2019, 07:00 PM   #7
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Paperwhite 3 is only available with 4GB storage (more like 3GB), unless you can track down Japanese model that was available with 32MB, and it has no waterproofing. Also no Invert Black and White feature, Bluetooth or Audible support (does support VoiceView via USB dongle). Paperwhite 10th gen starts out with 8GB with 32GB available.

Dictionary support goes along with the firmware version. So both my 8th gen Kindle and 10th gen Paperwhite have the same number of dictionaries available (60 which includes some handful I’ve purchased). My 7th gen Paperwhite is on loan so I cannot check it presently, but pretty sure it will have the same 60.

Last edited by tomsem; 04-19-2019 at 01:30 PM.
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Old 04-18-2019, 07:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barryem View Post
The other concern is with the ones they're selling as Wifi versions on Woot are the international 3G versions and that 3G can't be used in the USA. I'm not sure where you are but in the USA but in the USA I'd be concerned that that 3G would always be trying to find a tower and drag the battery down. I know some devices do that. I'm not sure this one would but I'd be nervous about that.
Barry
FWIW, the International Voyage Woot was selling recently works fine with US 3G. The 3G in the kindles isn't supposed to turn on unless you are actively trying to download and wifi fails. The only difficulty that I had was that Amazon Customer Service had to register my unit on their end - I kept erroring out when I tried to do it myself.

Last edited by Tarana; 04-18-2019 at 07:35 PM.
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Old 04-19-2019, 09:05 AM   #9
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Others have given all the differences between the PW3 and PW4 and you knew the prices from the start. I would probably go with the PW4 for the warranty. For me, the extra memory isn't important. I rather like the flush screen but it's not a deal-breaker for me. Neither Paperwhite is heavy enough to make that a factor. The audio capability is irrelevant for me, too, because I read.

I have no interest in playing with the hardware so jailbreak doesn't concern me. I just want to read books.
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Old 04-19-2019, 09:54 AM   #10
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The size difference doesn't matter - it's impossible to automatically feel one is lighter if you don't use a case unless you're trying to tell the difference and really paying attention. That shouldn't factor into buying one over the other.

The extra storage and waterproof features on the PW4 are a big bonus for me, so if I had to pick another to buy, I'd go with the 4. However, I do prefer the PW3 screen.

I haven't jailbroken before so can't compare on that.

Last edited by Paperbackstash; 05-03-2019 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 05-01-2019, 04:42 PM   #11
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Lightbulb basic kindle 2019?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 730 View Post
I'm thinking of buying a Kindle Paperwhite, but not sure whether to get 3 or 4.
I actively use a PW3 (for bedtime stories) and a jailbroken PW4 for regular reads. Using them I feel no difference, however I like KOReader on the jailbroken one for exceptional good PDF reading (like reflow of scanned books! and inverted mode).

As you have mentioned the price tag I suggest you to check the new basic kindle (Gen 10, 2019, available since 10 April) as well. I could afford buying the PW4 32GB but if you are on a budget it can also be an alternative, $40 less but only 600*800 (which is still enough for reading).
ebookfriendly.com: “The first Kindle with a front light for under $100.” "$89.99, for the variant with special offers. The ad-free version costs as usual $20 more – $109.99."
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Old 05-03-2019, 03:24 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 730 View Post
I'm thinking of buying a Kindle Paperwhite, but not sure whether to get 3 or 4.
As for PW3 vs PW4 battle, I decided to get the PW3:
1) I still don't know how to 'waste' 1.36 Gb, even having 700+ books;
2) I prefer non-flush screen, so when the reader falls (accidentally) on the floor and hits the frame, the screen will stay intact (like, physical borders are better)
3) I wouldn't compromise the contrast of the screen, since I'm gonna 'look at it' (i.e. read), like 99% of the usage of it

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Old 05-03-2019, 03:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Can custom software for 3 provide you with the same functionality they added on 4?
Software-wise, almost all Kindles currently supported (PW2 and later, I suppose) share the same set of 'basic' features (firmware versions are the same, except for processor-specific goodies like inverse-color on PW4, e.g.).
As for 'shipping software', I'm not sure about PW3 anymore, but PW4 might come with 'not yet jailbreakable' revision (yet).

You can try and ask guys in the Kindle review section on Amazon, sorting by the recent date first.


As for "custom" FW, it is not always possible depending on your needs. E.g. I don't know to manually add the read/unread sorting feature.

Usually customs add-ons provide something that no stock FW can give to you, like LibrariaSync for easier collections management.

Last edited by mergen3107; 05-05-2019 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 05-03-2019, 03:30 AM   #14
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And yes, I enjoy my PW3 purchased last December.
If reading is your first priority, you'll forget about all the software/hardware differences after two weeks of die-hard tampering with the Kindle, and just read
I'm still on FW 5.9.7, jailbroken. There is nothing else that I can add to make the reading even better (except for the old-school progress bar, which I still dream about).

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Old 05-03-2019, 09:40 AM   #15
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