• EEVblog #205 – Kindle 4 Review & Unboxing

    Dave takes a look at the new generation $79 “stripped down” Kindle 4.
    How does it compare with the current Kindle 3 reader?

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      • jridley

        On the contrast, you should try making an opaque (thick, black paper) mask that covers the case and only shows the screen. I think it’s possible that the Kindle 3’s screen appears whiter because it’s contrasting against the darker case. Put both of them behind masks and try doing a blind comparison.

        As for ad supported, it probably wouldn’t affect me at all since I have never even enabled the radio on my reader since activation. I have a Nook STR and I side-load everything. I only ever go to the contents screen to select my next book. But I would definitely pay the extra bucks to get the touch screen; the Nook touch is really nice. I hope the web browser on the Kindle 4 encourages B&N to activate the browser on the Nook STR.

      • Kashif

        Hi Dave,

        Like your blog! Will you do a Ipad2 product review in the future?

        • http://www.eevblog.com EEVblog

          Not unless someone gives me one!

      • bsg

        Does the new kindle allow you to reverse screen colours (white letters on a black background)? I find this mode easier on the eyes. Thanks

      • http://clonecrp clonecrp

        Scheez Dave:
        JFYI (Just For Your Information) I met Setve and Woz (1st West Coast Computer Fair) and was one of the first 256 apple dealers. The apple II was the biggie(1976) got it !

      • SockThief

        The kindle is one of those devices that a few years ago I would have jumped at, especially with the price of the series 4 models. But for traveling etc, I’ve found you can’t go past the App for iPhone/Android. My preference being on the Android version. With the free App, I can’t help but wonder if the HW Kindle versions are going to be successful, and then if there is any major difference between the HW and SW versions of Kindle.

        I personally love the Kindle, mostly it all makes good sense, cheaper books, less dead tree, more books when I travel, it’s all a win, right? But am I the only one who has found that Kindle books are not always the best quality? Just for starters there I have a number of books that I’ve bought that have a stack of spelling and grammatical errors. The layout often leaves a lot to be desired (especially if there are photos or images which never seem to translate well). Then there is the DRM scheme, which, effectively means you buy the book but don’t actually own it! As an exercise, try copy+pasting from a kindle book on the PC, handy for programming books or research, exporting the book, downloading it to more than 6 devices, or, in an extreme scenario, Kindle is no longer available, what happens to my books? Or my personal favorite, subscriptions, which seem to be stuck on whatever device you used to subscribe….

        yet for all that, I still love the eBook and the Kindle is the best example of the eBook so far, though I feel that could be due to the number of titles available for Kindle….

        • http://www.eevblog.com EEVblog

          I personally love the Kindle, mostly it all makes good sense, cheaper books, less dead tree, more books when I travel, it’s all a win, right?

          You forgot the big two features that differentiate the Kindle (and other eBook readers) from tablets and phones.
          1) Battery life
          2) Screen contrast
          Both things, courtesy of the E-Ink display blow any phone or tablet out of the water.

      • Ian

        That’s a good point Dave, and one that most people miss. I’ve had no end of people look over my shoulder while reading my Kindle and ask “Why didn’t you get an iPad?”

        For me, the kindle wins over the iPad as a book reader because (a) it doesn’t have one of those dumb-ass shiny displays that drive me nuts, (b) battery life means I don’t have to charge it every few hours, (c) and if I drop it, or lose it at worst I’m £100 down rather than £300-500 for an ipad!

        On that last point, I accidently sat on my kindle and broke the PCB inside. Amazon replaced it FOC with no quibbles inside of 3 days – that’s good customer service and unexpected under the circumstances.

        The new kindle looks good, but I’m holding out for the touch screen version, I hope that comes to the UK soon. The Kindle Fire looks interesting too, but I’m not sure I have use for a tablet right now.

      • Paul

        The Kindle is an excellent device if you need to have datasheets or manuals on hand. No more wasting paper!

        • Matt Gholston

          That was the primary reason I bought my kindle 3G. I carry all of my manuals and data sheets, technical abstracts, etc. on it for all of the equipment I interact with It even does a great job reading e size schematics when you take advantage of landscape mode and zoom. It gets used more for work than play. Worth every penny.

      • XynxNet

        Thanks for your review, Dave. It helped me to decide to buy one myself.

        There is one negativ aspekt about the kinde, which should be mentioned: pricing in the eu.
        Converting 79$ to 99€ is a total ripoff.

      • Bill Clay

        I heard that the new Kindle will only “flash black” (refresh) every 6 page turns. Maybe a refresh is not needed for every new page anymore?

        • Bill Clay

          Oh, I think you can see it in the video that the new one did it once when Dave was testing page turning.

        • XynxNet

          Yes, that’s right. Between these “flash black” refrehes, it does a kind of partial refresh by inverting the writing and its outline. After some partial refrehes you can see a dim ghosting, wich is gone after the next full “flash black” refresh.

      • Michael

        Why I hate it when advertisers and news shows use percentages.

        You’re right in pointing out that the Kindle 4 is only 23% lighter than then Kindle 3.

        You can also say that the Kindle 3 is 30% heavier than the Kindle 4.