New Onyx Boox i62 eBook Reader Has HD Pearl Screen and IR Touch


Onyx Boox i62

Yesterday I came across a new ebook reader from Onyx that is loaded with cool features. Unfortunately it isn’t available in the United States but it is available in different parts of Europe and probably Asia too.

As you can tell from the picture above, it looks a lot like the Nook Touch, and it has the same type of infrared touchscreen as the Nook Touch too. But it has some upgrades over the Nook that make it one intriguing little device.

I turned up two different versions of this new 6″ ebook reader. In Russia it is called the Onyx Boox i62M Captain Nemo. Then there’s a similar device listed on a German website that goes by the name Onyx Boox i62HD. Both appear to be basically the same. And there are other versions of the i62 and i62M that don’t have HD screens. Confusing….

Speaking of HD screen, that is the one feature about the i62M/i62HD that sets it above the competition. Most 6″ ebook readers, including the Kindle, Sony, and Nook, use E Ink screens with 800 x 600 resolutions. The new Onyx Boox uses the newer E Ink Pearl screens with a 1024 × 758 resolution, which makes the text appear darker and sharper, especially fine detail.

The only other ebook reader to use this screen was the iriver Story HD, which didn’t have a touchscreen or nearly as many features as the Onyx Boox.

Other features for the Onyx i62 include WiFi for downloading ebooks and using a built-in web browser, the touchscreen supports multi-touch, it has a Cortex A8 800MHz processor, 128MB of RAM, and a microSD card slot for memory expansion.

From a software standpoint, the i62 supports a ton of ebook formats and has a number of features, including a dictionary, notes app, photo viewer, calculator, and some games.

I found this lengthy review of the i62M on a Russian website that includes a number of pictures.

What’s cool about the i62 is that it has different programs for reading ebooks. It uses FBReader and Cool Reader, both of which are loaded with customizing options. It also has a PDF Reader. Basically, the software sounds a lot like PocketBook’s ereaders.

Too bad Onyx’s ereaders aren’t available in the US (it turns out they are; see comments) or I would try to get one to review. Ereaders like this used to be more common in the States, but ever since Amazon and B&N started selling their ebook readers for under $100, it has pretty much chased away most of the competition.

19 Responses to “New Onyx Boox i62 eBook Reader Has HD Pearl Screen and IR Touch”

  1. Wow, this looks incredible. I’ve been interested in ebook readers for a while, but haven’t found one worth investing my money in yet. I currently use FBReader on my Android phone and expect it would work well on a screen like this. The increased resolution of this device will be great for PDFs.

    Sadly, I live in the US. It’s a shame they’re not available here, this device checks all the boxes on my dream ereader.

  2. Interesting. The translation of the russian article is very interesting. Living in Germany I toyed with the thought of buying this Reader.
    The 128 MB RAM are combined with 8 GB Flash, that is a lot for ebooks, and you can insert a micro-SD-card (probably up to 32 GB, giving you 40 GB).
    But then I saw the weight-comparison:
    Onyx Boox i62M Kapitän Nemo – 250 g;
    Sony Reader PRS-T1 – 164 g;
    Amazon Kindle Touch – 213 g;
    Barnes & Noble Nook Simple Touch – 212 g;
    PocketBook Touch – 195 g.
    OK, I know that my Sony PRS-T1 is still the lightest E-Reader available, but 250 g sounds like a lot. And for that weight no Sound, either. While not used often, it still is a nice thing to have, for Audiobooks or Music in the background while reading.
    Maybe if I could test it in a shop, but I will not order it online. The price is good, imho, the Sony still costs Eur 150 Eur, without cover and without charger, only a stylus is included, there are nearky no cheaper units sold, as in USA and that price is also at some shops without shipping.

  3. The German website eReader Store says it is available on June 8, and has Zone 5 shipping to outside countries including the United States. If it can ship to the USA, this e-reader could be pre-ordered for 185.00 Euros or $230.00.

  4. Book your boox!

    The product is available here: https://www.onyx-boox.com/

    The company offers also other Boox-models, for further questions don’t hesitate to write at sales@onyx-boox.com 🙂

  5. Nathan, just to clarify, the Onyx Boox readers are available domestically in the US. I ordered one and it’s in transit to me now. The web site is http://www.onyxboox.com (no hyphen in the name). I was able to pay via VISA card and it’s being shipped via priority mail. And if I read the post correctly from the Onyx Boox forum the US distributor is in process of obtaining this unit for US sale. From what I learned from the Icarus marketing person, Icarus has an agreement with Onyx to private label the Onyx Boox M92, but no other models. Therefore the Icarus Excel should be able to run the Onyx M92 firmware. The Onyx Boox M92, i62 and i62 HD run on the same firmware build which is developed via an open source model. The Onyx Boox appears to be the e-reader that Pocketbook should be (newer Pearl e-ink screen with better firmware).

    • Thanks for pointing that out, Jim. I’ve been to that website in the past but couldn’t find it today for some reason. Must’ve been the hyphen. I’ll have to keep an eye on when they get the i62hd in stock.

  6. The i62 HD will be my next reader purchase. Please post info on how to get one of these when it becomes available to the U.S.

    It has an HD screen, page turn buttons, and is open source…what could be better?

  7. Nathan, please add another US source, http://www.pocketbookreader.com (that right) and you’ll land at the E-Readers Plaza where they have the Onyx Boox M92 in black in stock at $379 including the cover which is an equivalent price to the Icarus Excel at $349 without the $30 cover. It may take some time for the channel to react, but these e-readers appear to be making their way to the US.

  8. Finally a good reason to live in Ukraine! I’ll have to keep my eyes open for this one, it maybe worthwhile.
    Thanks

  9. @Jim – where did you order your M92 from?

    These eReaders look very promising (M92 9.7″ and the i62 HD). This is the direction that readers need to take to continue advancing their specs. Price wars between Amazon and B&N are not going to give us high definition E Ink screens, larger displays, or Wacom technology. I wouldn’t mind paying $60-$100 more for better quality parts, HD, and better firmware.

  10. Andrew, I ordered mine directly from http://www.onyxboox.com who’s based in the Atlanta, GA area. Keep in mind that Onyx is not necessarily going to get into a price war with Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Kobo. I’ve had a Sony PRS-950 for over a year and the frustration with e-readers is the software. I know many feel that Android is the answer, but I think an open source development model may yield software that is better tailored to the unique operating characteristics of e-readers compared to tablets.

  11. Jim, thanks for the info. Yes, I DON’T want Onyx to get into a price war with Amazon or B&N; that is the problem with readers today. The Kindle, Nook, and Sony devices have been hampered by the necessity to keep parts at the lowest cost possible. This is why we don’t have an HD screen release from any of the major US/Canada companies.

    I think there is room for a company like Onyx to make high quality, high grade eReaders for customers who are willing to pay more for better product specs. I wouldn’t mind paying $200 for an HD reader with an open source platform (and no DRM).

    Are your processing actions smooth on the M92, or is it laggy? Thanks.

  12. Andrew, I got the M92 today and have just started to explore it. Going to a stylus interface from touch is a little different (but then again I’m certain there’s a system setting that can adjust this). The screen appears darker than on my Sony PRS-950, which also has the Pearl e-ink screen. I’ll write up a review in a few weeks if Nathan doesn’t. In terms of responsiveness, I need to do some tests to see how it operates. One test I intend to do is the start up test with a memory card containing several thousand e-books. The Sony PRS-950 takes almost 15 minutes to start up with 3,200 ebooks on two memory cards, which is a concern.

  13. “One test I intend to do is the start up test with a memory card containing several thousand e-books.”

    That will be a first of its kind.

  14. Thanks for the links. I am considering ordering an i62 HD from the German seller, but I would really like to wait for a US distributor. The less time my reader spends being jostled around in the mail, the better.

  15. Aside from the screen resolution, is the Onyx Boox i62 HD the same as the regular Boox i62?

    • Not sure, exactly. Onyx’s models are confusing. For instance, the i62HD has audio and the i62m doesn’t. So the regular i62 may have some differences aside from that too. It’s hard to tell because their website doesn’t have a lot of info on all the different models.