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Discussion Starter #281
Yes yes, I was just moving the conversation along in response. As you may notice, I am fairly passionate about the e-ink screen. :) Always looking for the perfect solution in an imperfect e-ink world...

I appreciate your notes, barryem. Very fair messages.

Personally, not to argue any point, but to further share my experience, a few more comments:

I have discussed extensively both the unit to unit variance of e-ink and/or frontlight as well as the reading light evenness question in my previous posting history, so these are not new topics or ideas for me either.

I have personally owned something like five different $69 basic Kindles and seen the non-lit screen variations within the same model - not to mention a bunch of other Kindles of course. There are variations in both background and text lightness/blackness and even in e-ink ghosting qualities. The front-light layers add their own to the mix. Also, I know the Kindle 3 cover light (still my favorite Kindle were it not so outdated now) casts an uneven light. Most external lights of course do. There are even unit-to-unit variances in the lights of Amazons (and others) lighted covers, I've explored these in my signature reviews.

That said, my personal experience, armchair research and analytical judgement says there are obvious trend differences between e-ink product models as well. Certain things are more likely to happen in certain models, for a multitude of reasons. For example, I find a non-lit e-ink reader a much safer purchase because there is less (none) layer alignment issues. On the other hand, different frontlit models do have their usual characteristics, even if all can be affected by unit-to-unit variance.

There is IMO sufficient and mounting evidence that this is the case. Paperwhite 1, very likely to have stagelighting and splotches, much less likely than in a Voyage, for instance. Reverse, Voyage much more likely to have a yellow-to-white top-down gradient than the Paperwhite 1.

As for the uneven reading light, the thing is - and I certainly acknowledge this part of the experience is subjective - an uneven light is less disturbing than a screen that appears to be uneven. The latter, to me, is simply more jarring since it happens in a well-defined box. A light covers all surrounding surfaces as well, so the transitions are more benign and natural. But a lit screen is very defined, very sharp contrast to the outside world. If it is uneven, it shows up differently compared to external lighting.

So, while the unevenness or nature of an external light is not insignificant (an insufficient light or light of too strong color, for example, do bother me), the threshold to an acceptable result is lower due to no expectation in the brain that this box would be of an even color.

As for paper (especially cheaper paperbacks) being uneven too, which is an argument by some, I don't consider that relevant to people sensitive to screen evenness. Paper is a physical object that is attached to each page that is read. It does not remain same uneven when you turn the page. And if one page is bad quality, no problem, the next is better, or the next book anyway... For a light background that remains the same behind a wall of text every page (like on an e-ink reader for mainly novel reading) the expectations of evenness and quality become more easily higher, because it has to stand the test of reading over and over again... and an uneven background there tends to jump out.
 

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I guess what it amounts to is that I'm not bothered much by an uneven front light and you are.  I was just reading for a few minutes on my Kobo Aura, easily the most unevenly lit reader I have.  It's splotchy and varied compared even to my Paperwhite 1, my most uneven Kindle.  In fact I'd feel safe betting that it's the most unevenly lit ereader screen ever made. :)

However, it fits my hand perfectly.  It's far and away the most comfortable reader to hold for extended periods.  It weighs practically nothing.  It's exactly what an ereader should be and if it had the same feature set and mode of operation of my Kindles it would be my favorite reader.  The screen is the worse of them all but it's still just fine.  That doesn't bother me.  If only it had Kindle features. :)

Barry
 

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Discussion Starter #283
barryem said:
I guess what it amounts to is that I'm not bothered much by an uneven front light and you are. I was just reading for a few minutes on my Kobo Aura, easily the most unevenly lit reader I have. It's splotchy and varied compared even to my Paperwhite 1, my most uneven Kindle. In fact I'd feel safe betting that it's the most unevenly lit ereader screen ever made. :)

However, it fits my hand perfectly. It's far and away the most comfortable reader to hold for extended periods. It weighs practically nothing. It's exactly what an ereader should be and if it had the same feature set and mode of operation of my Kindles it would be my favorite reader. The screen is the worse of them all but it's still just fine. That doesn't bother me. If only it had Kindle features. :)
Interesting to hear your experiences. Always nice to gain perspectives! Thank you.

I understand that how much and what type of unevenness bothers people is subjective. I also agree that e-reading, like anything else, is a question of the whole experience, not just a part of it. Hence why I don't read on Kindle 3 anymore, even though in many ways it was the most successful Kindle for me... it is just outdated by now in so many respects, for me. And why Paperwhite 2, Voyage and Oasis in the end, after some unit replacements, became workable for me... most of the time. They have some very nice features to compensate any screen issues.

One thing that I've noticed that affects the screen evenness question is the reading situation. I have noticed that many people most bothered by the unevenness are people who read in the dark, like myself. Darkness (without other lights) clearly makes the unevenness more apparent as there is very little to no external lighting to even it out. I am often surprised how even frontlit Kindles look in daylight. The problem is that is not my usual reading scenario.

All this said, I notice the Oasis gradient sometimes still, but other than that I read a lot of books on it. It is an ideal design in so many other ways.
 

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Discussion Starter #284
FearIndex said:
Heh, I got to thinking it and put in an order for the new white basic Kindle, with the white cover and the white recommended reading light.

I want to see what it feels like - and the return to white is interesting too. I did like the previous basic Kindle and then-recommended Verso clip light (reviews in my signature), but the size/weight of the Kindle and the impracticality of a separate reading light eventually gave it a back seat compared to my other e-readers.

I wonder if the white is jarring with a light or compared to the greyness of the screen - or if the low screen resolution feels terribly outdated. We shall see.
Got these devices and posted a bit of a review. I must say I like the colors of the latest round of Amazon Kindle products - and the updates are improvements.

That said, I think the Kindle Oasis remains an imperfect but best Kindle at the moment.
 

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FearIndex said:
All this said, I notice the Oasis gradient sometimes still, but other than that I read a lot of books on it. It is an ideal design in so many other ways.
I haven't actually seen an Oasis. I've just read and watched a lot of reviews. I like the idea of it and it's small size. I'm concerned about the longevity of that too-small internal battery so I decided not to get one. Still I'm tempted. I also don't care for buttons and that wide bezel to accomodate tham is a bit off-putting. Probably if either of those weren't concerns I'd eventually talk myself into one. As it is, I doubt if I will. Too bad. I really think I'd like reading on it.

Barry
 

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I cannot speak to the design team of the Oasis so they may have made one bezel wider only to accommodate the page turn buttons.  My love of that wide bezel is I finally have a reader I can easily and comfortably read one handed.  I can use one hand laying down, sitting up, it truly does not matter.  The page turn buttons are a plus.  The light weight without the cover is another huge bonus for extended reading sessions.  I am either blessed with an even screen or eyes that do not see the variation in color many have posted about. 

Battery life of the smaller battery is also of little importance.  I have reached the stage i life I can replace the Oasis annually if I had to but I imagine it will last much longer than that.  I do all my reading outside the cover but place it in the cover whenever I am not reading.  I also only use in my home or rented place when on vacation.  When about town and I want to read, say at the dr's while waiting, I use the Kindle app on my phone.  I find it perfectly adequate to use and I always have it with me so no need to remember additional items that could get lost.

I have been reading on the Kindle app on my phone for many years.  My first Kindle reader was the Voyage so I don't have the long experience with various models that some have.  I had a passing interest in the giant Kobo Aura One (7.8 screen) but the bezels are thin without page turn buttons so I doubt its one handed ease of use. 
 

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Like you I read on my phone when I'm out and about.  The doctor's office; waiting in line at the grocery, etc.  The Kindle app is okay but I prefer Moon+ reader because I can scroll instead of paging.  If the LCD didn't give me eyestrain if I read too long that would be my preferred way of reading.  For me it's just right.

Whatever I'm reading on I hold it with one hand and turn pages with the other.  When I had a Kindle 3 with buttons, also a Kindle 4, I did the same thing.  If I didn't keep my hands away from the button I was always turning pages accidentally.  I found it much more efficient to turn pages with the other hand, kind of like I always did with papeer.

Now with the touch screen I do the same thing.  I'm able to use one hand for both holding it and turning pages.  My thumb can manage the page turns.  But that's awkward and using the other hand for that is an old habit.

By the way, someone, I think on Mobilereads, suggested a tablet romote control for page turns.  I just got one a few minutes ago but I haven't tried it yet.  This will have no practical value for me since I don't read on a tablet but for people who do it's said to work well.  I want to try it for controling the volume while watching videos, etc.

Barry
 
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