What should I know about buying a Kindle DX?
February 28, 2012 12:07 PM   Subscribe

I'm considering purchasing a Kindle DX, but the current version is two years old and two hardware generations behind the regular Kindle. Is there functionality in the newer versions of the regular Kindle that I would miss when using the Kindle DX? Is it likely to be replaced or discontinued in the near future? Is there anything else that I should know about before buying a Kindle DX?
posted by theclaw to Technology (14 answers total)
For the price of a Kindle DX you're in the ballpark for refurbished iPads and cheaper Android tabs.

Rumor has it now that when Amazon refreshes the Fire in the fall, there's going to be a 9.7" model alongside the original 7".

Are you super invested in having an e-ink screen?
posted by Oktober at 12:15 PM on February 28, 2012

Why specifically do you want a DX? I'm not a huge fan of mine; for regular reading, the smaller Kindles are far more convenient (lighter, faster), and for full-page/PDF stuff, an iPad is WAAAAAAAAAAY better due to the Kindle's clumsy software navigation.
posted by trevyn at 12:21 PM on February 28, 2012 [1 favorite]

Yeah, I got one about a year ago when they did an odd one-day sale for $240. I love it (got the size for textbooks), but the software is woefully out of date and they don't seem to have any interest in updating it. It's based off of the Kindle 2 generation on hardware and software. (You *can* flash it to the Kindle 3 firmware, but I think it drained my battery, so I undid it)

The main feature in the newer Kindles that I miss (and thus tried flashing it for) is the improved web browser. There's other stuff, but that's my main loss-of-feature.

That said, I love it, and it's absolutely wonderful for textbooks and reference material.
posted by CrystalDave at 12:29 PM on February 28, 2012

I love my DX. I read too fast for the smaller Kindle (drives me nuts to have to "flip" pages that often). My first DX died after 4 years of hard use. I have a new DX now and the differences are minor. First the screen is sharper, though I never thought my previous screen wasn't sharp. And the case is charcoal instead of white. Otherwise, it's exactly the same.
posted by cecic at 12:31 PM on February 28, 2012

The DX rocks for reading PDFs. I love having that big an e-ink screen. For me it doesn't need other functionality (I.e. touchscreen).
posted by feets at 12:46 PM on February 28, 2012

I don't think Amazon has put any info about the DX or a new device.

However, Staples had the DX on clearance for $130 last week. Not sure if you can still find stock.
posted by wongcorgi at 1:00 PM on February 28, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks for the feedback so far. I'm considering an e-ink reader because I'd like to read longer-form material without a web browser, and being able to put more content per page on the DX is the main appeal of the larger display. How do people get content onto the device? How much does the email content delivery cost? In what ways are the new Kindles faster?
posted by theclaw at 1:18 PM on February 28, 2012

I think you may be operating with imperfect information.

The Kindle (and Nook) reader software is available for a variety of devices, and if you have an iPhone/Pad, there's the separate iBooks store as well.

If I buy, say, American Gods on amazon.com, the book shows up on both my Kindle Fire and on the Kindle app on my iPhone.
posted by Oktober at 1:23 PM on February 28, 2012

I have the Kindle Touch and email delivery is free.
posted by i_am_a_fiesta at 1:31 PM on February 28, 2012

"How do people get content onto the device?"

Mostly I purchase from Amazon, but occasionally I get books elsewhere and use Calibre (free downloaded software) to convert and transfer the files to my Kindle - you just connect the Kindle to your computer via the USB cable.
posted by cecic at 2:46 PM on February 28, 2012

I usually use Calibre to put things on my kindle, but you can also drag n drop files. (I have the Keyboard version.)
posted by sm1tten at 4:24 PM on February 28, 2012

I have a dx and really, really like it. however they seem to be a little more delicate than the kindle. The e-ink screen is really nice for reading, and comparing it to the ipad or the fire is a mistake. it is comparing apples and oranges. The bigger screen is really nice, especially for using larger print or viewing any images. The web browser blows. You can buy both a kindle dx and an adroid tablet for about 500 all told and cover both bases (or just use a smart phone for portable web browsing).
posted by bartonlong at 5:30 PM on February 28, 2012

Email content delivery is free over wifi or USB cable, and cheap over 3G (15 cents/MB, but remember that it takes a lot of text to make a megabyte). I second the expansive use of Calibre. (Windows software.)
posted by Sunburnt at 6:43 PM on February 28, 2012

Keep in mind that in addition to hardware/software updates, new e-book files themselves may have features (fonts, etc) that are not backwards-compatible. We are no longer concerning ourselves with "legacy kindles" in terms of our e-book conversions, but I'm not sure if that includes the DX or just the first generation kindles.

As a sidenote, I tested the DX for a class a few years ago and I hated it. I wouldn't have kept it if they'd given it away for free. It felt really flimsy and breakable without the case, and with the case it weighs as much as a large hardcover book. The button navigation system sucks and the keyboard takes up a lot of real estate, making for a bad screen-size-to-surface-area ratio. I ended up buying a Sony Touch around the same time, which are no longer made, and I'm lusting after the nook simple touch but darn it, that Sony Touch just keeps working. E-ink and a larger screen size are fantastic, but the DX just wasn't worth it to me.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 7:12 PM on February 28, 2012

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