13.3-inch Onyx Boox Max2 Review (Video)


Onyx Boox Max2 Review

The Onyx Boox Max2 is Onyx’s latest 13.3-inch device, the third generation Max model. It was first released at the end of December 2017.

Aside from the larger screen, it’s mostly the same as the 10.3-inch Onyx Boox Note that I reviewed earlier this year, but the Max2 adds physical page buttons and a menu button, along with an HDMI port to use the device as an E Ink monitor.

Like the Note, it has a quad-core 1.6GHz processor with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage space, so the performance is quite good for an E Ink device.

It has a dual-touch screen with support for finger touch and Wacom stylus touch—both work well. But there is no frontlight.

This is going to be a quick review because I only had the Max2 for a couple of days. Normally I wouldn’t post a review based on such limited usage but I’ve been using the Boox Note for the past three months and it’s basically the exact same device with a smaller screen so I’m very familiar with the software and how everything works.

I bought the Max2 used on eBay when they had a 10% off code. But when it arrived I noticed the screen was covered in scratches and indentations from the previous owner pressing down too hard with the stylus, so I promptly returned it for a refund. Be cautious when buying the Max2 and Note used because that is a known problem with their screens, although it’s easily avoidable because my Note’s screen shows no marks whatsoever.

Onyx Boox Max2 Review

Pros

  • The massive screen is great for reading PDFs and the Wacom touchscreen works very well for writing notes.
  • It runs open Android 6.0 and comes with Google Play to install apps, and the software is a lot more advanced than Sony’s Digital Paper devices.
  • The build quality feels nice and sturdy, more solid than the Boox Note, and it adds an HDMI port and physical page buttons.

Cons

  • Very expensive.
  • No frontlight.
  • The screen can show scratches and indentations if you don’t use a screen protector and press too hard with the stylus.
  • Some lag and ghosting when using monitor mode.

Verdict

The Onyx Boox Max2 is surprisingly huge. It has the same 13.3-inch screen as the Sony DPT-RP1 but it’s 200 grams heavier and the overall size is larger and thicker so it feels noticeably bigger.

Onyx’s software is miles ahead of Sony’s, however, so there are lots of things the Max2 does better, and there are lots of things it can do that the Sony cannot, like installing apps and doubling as an E Ink monitor.

I like the solid-feeling build quality of the Max2, but the large size does take away from the portability aspect quite a bit. It’s like carrying around a large dinner platter. I like the form factor and lightness of the 10.3-inch Boox Note better, and with Onyx’s advanced margin cropping and zooming modes I find the smaller screen perfectly adequate for reading PDFs.

If you’re reading PDFs everyday and plan on using the sidenote feature in landscape mode, or if you want to view PDFs in full page view without zooming in, or if you want to use the E Ink monitor mode, then the large screen on the Max does have some advantages. Otherwise you might as well save $250 and go with the Boox Note instead because the overall features are the exact same minus the monitor mode.

Onyx Boox Max2 Video Review

More Onyx Boox Reviews

Onyx Boox Note Review
Onyx Boox Note vs Max2 Comparison
Onyx Boox Note PDF Review
Kindle App Review

Onyx Boox Max2 Specs

  • 13.3-inch E Ink Mobius Carta flexible display
  • 2200 x 1650 resolution (207 ppi)
  • Wacom touchscreen (stylus touch)
  • 2048 degrees of pressure sensitivity
  • Capacitive touchscreen (finger touch)
  • 1.6GHz quad-core CPU
  • 32GB internal storage
  • 2GB RAM
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • Speaker, microphone, headphone jack
  • Micro USB port
  • Micro HDMI port
  • Supported files: PDF, TXT, HTML, EPUB, CHM, PDB, MOBI, FB2, DJVU, plus others
  • Operating system: Android 6.0 with Google Play
  • Battery: 4100 mAh
  • Weight: 550 grams
  • Dimensions: 325 mm x 237 mm x 7.5 mm
  • Price: $799 USD at Amazon

3 Responses to “13.3-inch Onyx Boox Max2 Review (Video)”

  1. I have always wanted an Ereader with a screen big enough to show a whole page of a large book. Since I play tabletop rpgs, this would be a great accessory for reading game books, especially with the ability to write notes while at the table.

    Sadly, the price point is too high for me.

  2. The 10.5″ Note in landscape mode would work well for reading a large book like a tabletop RPG manual. It feels good in the hand and its cropping is excellent. It does have drawbacks. Its software and hardware feel kludgy and no one has yet found a third party, stylus-based app that works with it. After a couple weeks, I’m returning mine, as well as a Sony DPT-RP1. I bought a tablet at the same time for comparison and, after installing a $4 antiglare screen protector and adjusting the tablet’s color and white point, will stick with that. I’d have kept the Sony except that it’s overpriced and its software has critical problems (no word from the company when it might repair them).

  3. I also have an issue with the price point.

    I’d like an external e-ink monitor, and maybe a writing/note-taking tool. But with proprioceptive and visual issues, touchscreens are a problem. I get migraines from zooming animation. I would need to be able to disable any pinch-zoom gestures, among others.

Leave a Reply