Welcome to another Good e-Reader Comparison Video! Today we evaluate the core reading experience with eBooks and PDF Files on the Amazon Kindle DX and Apple iPad Air.
The DX and iPad Air both have 9.7 inch screens, but are quite different in their form and function. The Kindle has an e Ink display screen, which means in long reading sessions you won’t strain your eyes. The iPad Air has the traditional LCD screen, so you will have light emitting from behind the screen. The DX does not have a touchscreen, so you will have to use the menu/settings and the DPAD to navigate around. The iPad Air has the best touchscreen in the business and you can easily pinch and zoom PDF Files.
The Kindle DX has a resolution of 1200 x 824 pixels and uses an E Ink Pearl display screen. The screen is a giant sized 9.7 inches, which really makes PDF files shine. Most files you will load in won’t look good right off the bat, so you have to use the zoom function to find your sweet spot. The bigger a file is, the longer it takes to zoom and to turn a page. This unit has free 3G internet access, which works in over 300 countries, so you can buy books from Amazon while on the go. Reading a standard eBook is pure bliss, it has text to speech and plenty of ways to augment the margins and font size.
The iPad Air has a staggering resolution of 2048×1536, which blows the DX out of the water. Reading a PDF file is a cakewalk with the ability to pinch and zoom on the fly. I noticed when you load in a 100MB file though, the iPad tends to struggle with it and you tend to see clipping with big black boxes if you pinch/zoom quickly. The overall clarity in reading PDF files is really nice, there is a ton of detail that is evident. One of the things I liked is being able to do highlights and note taking right in a PDF file, while the DX has no functions at all. Your standard eBook looks really crisp, lots of great functions in iBooks to change the font size, font type and lots of advanced highlight features.
The video below documents the same PDF side by side on the iPad Air and the Kindle DX. You can get a sense on what both bring to the table and what types of functionality you can expect. We also fire up an eBook, so you can see what device may be right for you.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.