e-Ink eReader - Onyx Boox Afterglow 2 (Logos on Kindle-like screen)

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This post has 28 Replies | 7 Followers

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Dec 4 2014 3:51 PM

I just purchased an Onyx Boox Afterglow 2 The purpose is to run Logos, Vyrso and Faithlife Study Bible on it. Here is a brief review:

This e-Ink eReader is definitely the best purchase I've made all year. It is so much easier on the eye than my tablet or phone with its e-Ink screen (it reads like paper) and is an excellent platform for distraction free reading. The Android apps work well on it for the purpose of reading and highlighting.

Pros:

  • Easy on the eyes with a nice sharp display that is as easy as paper. I find the screen size to be well suited.
  • Sunlight reading is fantastic and late night reading via a front-lit screen is good for me (and my wife who is generally trying to sleep)
  • All Faithlife apps are currently working and books downloading (I did need to shift the app to the SD card). The page turns and highlighting are very good. Making notes is not as functional, but still very usable.
  • Headphone output for audio
  • Great battery life (less than a week with wifi on, but still very good)
  • Android 4.2 (better app compatibility) and Google Play app store installed (enabling lots of other uses).
  • I also have the Kindle app working for those books I've not yet got on Logos.

Cons:

  • The official Faithlife stance is that eInk Android readers are not supported. Actual support wouldn't be difficult. This becomes a problem if ever the app becomes incompatible with the reader.
  • All the current eInk readers have limited app storage space. This can limit what apps you can install or how many. This can be a pro as I've used Smart Locker to lock the internet / news reader so I have a distraction free environment.
  • Touch screen is not as accurate with finger presses as it could be so typing is difficult and sometimes you can miss the menu item in the apps. This is not a problem when highlighting or reading.
  • No multi-tasking with apps.

Conclusion:

Would I recommend it? Definitely. It has changed my reading experience and given me a device that is distraction free for devotion and study in the sun and in the dark. But I'd only recommend it for you if you're a person that is willing to carry a little bit of the standard baggage for an early adopter (patience and a willingness to fiddle a bit).

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 4 2014 7:05 PM

If you want to support e-Ink screens receiving some attention in Android apps then please vote here https://logosmobile.uservoice.com/forums/190765-logos-mobile-apps/suggestions/6804981-support-e-ink-for-android-ereader

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 4 2014 7:35 PM

Is this available in the states?

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Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 4 2014 7:43 PM

alabama24:

Is this available in the states?

Seems to be when I looked. Costs US$40 in shipping from Onyx

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 4 2014 8:42 PM

Randle Bond:
Seems to be when I looked. Costs US$40 in shipping from Onyx

You mean $40 to ship the device from Europe, or $40 for the device? I don't see where this is being sold in the US:

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Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 4 2014 9:41 PM

If you click on calculate shipping you will be able to enter your country / state. It ships from Europe (Poland) and arrived for me in Australia within 5 days.

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Fr Devin Roza | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 5 2014 3:20 AM

Thanks, Randle. This looks like a great option.

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JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 5 2014 5:12 AM

Hello Mr. Bond

I went to the link and it featured a soft core porn book called MY FIRST in the ad.

Capitulating to the world turns me off.  I saw it as an omen this device is (to be kind) NOT for me.

Merry Christmas though Sir.

Smile

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Dec 7 2014 3:43 PM

JoshInRI:

I went to the link and it featured a soft core porn book called MY FIRST in the ad.

Capitulating to the world turns me off.  I saw it as an omen this device is (to be kind) NOT for me.

An unfortunate choice of advertising! The app you see there is Kindle for Android and the Amazon store continually seems to have dodgy books like that on its top sellers list. I'm not sure why they don't have an option to only show age appropriate content in this section.

If you were to get this device it is easy to restrict it to certain applications using an application locker as well as remove access to the free book libraries. There is nothing dodgy installed on the device to begin with (not even the Kindle app).

Posts 13
Matthew VandenHeuvel | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 9 2014 5:11 PM

Randle,

This looks like a great solution for strained eyes using Logos resources!

I'm in Canada, do you see any drawbacks from using the onyx here, being it comes from the Europe?

Also, when you highlight and make notes, does that get saved in my regular Logos account?

There is a regular Logos app for this device?

Thanks!

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 9 2014 5:58 PM

I'm from Australia and can see the only potential drawback as being if there is a fault and a return needs to be made. If there is a fault I believe you need to pay one way of the shipping (this is fairly standard for online purchases). I know this encouraged some people to buy previous models through Amazon when they became available.

Yep - all the highlights and notes transfer across perfectly. It is an Android tablet and so it uses the Logos Android apps.

Posts 8
Brian Hammonds | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 23 2014 9:22 AM

I've just ordered the Afterglow 2 and will receive it sometime in January...I've been looking for an e-ink reader that could run the Logos Android app, as well as the Kindle and Nook apps, since I have some books in all formats. I'll try to come back to the forum and review the Onyx Boox Afterglow 2 after I get my hands on it. If I had an extra couple of hundred dollars, I would have considered the Onyx Boox M96 Universe because of the larger 9.7″ E Ink display (even with the fact that you can only use a stylus on the screen). Maybe the next generation of e-ink readers will have the larger screen without a stylus and full Google Play apps!

Posts 405
Mark Nolette | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Jan 4 2015 5:35 PM

Just a quick note - the Afterglow 2 is available through Amazon in the US now. That will save you shipping costs!

Posts 8
Brian Hammonds | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Jan 4 2015 7:25 PM

I got my Afterglow 2, and overall I'm pleased with it. I bought it primarily to run the Logos mobile app, but also wanted to run the Kindle and Nook apps, since I have some books in each of those formats. The interface isn't as clean as a Kindle, but it does the job. I'm a little disappointed that the internal memory is so small. I added a 32gb microSD card, but not all of the apps I want to run will transfer over to the SD card. Some don't give that option and must remain on the internal storage. I'm trying to figure out how to sideload apps (if that's possible), or if I can get any help from their company on how to make the SD card more useful. Also, it makes me sign into the Logos App every time I try to use it (something my other Android devices haven't required). I'm not sure if that a Logos issue or a Afterglow 2 issue, but I'm willing to put up with it to use the app on an e-ink screen. It looks great on e-ink! Thanks to those on the forum who posted quick reviews, it helped me take the plunge!

Posts 1
Kron Oftharna | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jan 12 2015 2:44 PM

Mr. Bond,

Great review. Unfortunately this comment "Touch screen is not as accurate with finger presses as it could be so typing is difficult and sometimes you can miss the menu item in the apps," gives me pause to purchase one of these.

I tried a Onyx T-68 once and the touch accuracy on the tablet was BAD. I can't imagine it being as bad as the T-68 but I am betting that it had not been fully addressed if someone is mentioning accuracy already. 

As a reference, I own a Boyue T-62 and love it. Very accurate compared with the T-68. 

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jan 12 2015 3:17 PM

Yeah, you wouldn't think it'd be that hard to get touch screen performance right. It is something they've missed in successive generations. I still find it usable but would've loved this solved.  But I've probably found the app space a more limiting factor 

Posts 1971
Jan Krohn | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 14 2015 1:18 AM

I'm looking into buying one of these, since my current e-ink reader doesn't support the latest FL apps any longer, and more and more resources are being made unusable by incompatible updates...

Does anyone know whether the Afterglow2 supports the "default write disk" setting?

http://www.trishtech.com/2014/06/change-default-storage-for-android-device/

With that setting, it should be possible to save resources to external SD.

Jan

Past IT Consultant. Past Mission Worker. Entrepreneur. Future Seminary Student.
Why Amazon sucks: Full background story of my legal dispute with the online giant

Posts 8
Brian Hammonds | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 14 2015 9:59 AM

I don't think it has that setting (I couldn't find it)...but it would sure make the device a WHOLE LOT more useful! But if you root the device, you might be able to do it. I haven't attempted that.

Posts 87
Randle Bond | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 14 2015 1:42 PM

You would need to root it. I personally would wait for one that has a larger app storage area. I really enjoy my afterglow 2 but get frustrated by the lack of space for apps (even with moving to SD card). I never have enough solace for Kindle application updates! I rooted mine to create extra space. I'm confident there will be something new soon? 

Posts 405
Mark Nolette | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 14 2015 3:52 PM

I know of two remedies for that lack of user app space. If you're rooted, look into Link2SD. It's an app that works its magic in the background (after you've done some prep work on your external SD card) so that apps you install from Google Play are installed onto a partition of your external SD card. I've tried it with the Onyx Boox C67ML Carta (which is essentially like the AfterGlow) and it works well.

The other remedy (if you don't mind buying another device) is the Boyue T62. It has one gig of user app space. I also see that Arta Tech (who sell the AfterGlow) now has the inkBOOK Onyx available (which is essentially the Boyue T61). It should also have more user app space than the AfterGlow.  

The latest FL apps work fine on either device (so far!).  

It just seems to me that an FL app on an E-Ink device is a no-brainer. They are a great match. 

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