Onyx Nova Pro
#1  Like_to_read 08-23-2019, 02:26 PM
I am longtime Kindle user and was thinking of buying another e-reader.

I would use the e-reader mainly to
- Read books on the Kindle app - I have over 500 Kindle books and would take too long to migrate all the notes and highlights to another platform
- Read articles in Pocket
- Read WSJ and NYTimes on the Android app

Editing PDFs or drawings is not important to me.

I was thinking of buying the Onyx Nova Pro and had a few questions

- I understand it runs a heavily skinned version of Android 6. However have there been any security or privacy concerns - such as entering login for Amazon (Kindle) or ability of the device to transmit personal files back since I couldn't find any audits of their software online

- How easy is to access Google Play Store? I see the company says it's already built in but there are a number of reviews which talk about difficulty with accessing Google Play Store

- How does the device perform? Is it glitchy when using the Kindle Android app for example? Does it lag and is there ghosting as pages are turned?


#2  downeaster59 08-23-2019, 06:59 PM
First of all, it looks like you don't need the stylus feature. If that is so, you might want to look at the non-Pro version, now called the Nova Plus. A little less expensive, but the same as the Pro, except for the stylus ability.

I have heard of some security or privacy concerns with Android 6. I honestly don't know how strong those concerns are. I don't use my Nova in public places, for one thing, mainly because I prefer to read where I'm alone and quiet. It hasn't been an issue for me thus far.

When the Nova first came out, there were issues with accessing Play Store. Later firmware updates have fixed that issue.

I find that the device performs very well, compared to other Android E-Ink devices I have had. The Kindle app runs, but page-turning is glitchy unless you do a simple adjustment in the Optimize menu. After Kindle is installed (and after every Kindle app upgrade), long press the app icon. In the small window that pops up, tap "optimize". Look for Animation Timeout. Tap its "none" value and change it to 300. Kindle fixed.

If you see any ghosting, you can adjust the refresh frequency for any app in the optimize settings as well. Ghosting, in general, is not an issue with the Nova. You can find other ways that you can optimize an app to look better on e-ink.

For the uses you describe, the Nova should work very well for you. I am quite satisfied with mine. My uses are similar to yours.

#3  Like_to_read 08-24-2019, 11:12 AM
Thanks for the info - that's very helpful.

In terms of security, I was more concerned about the manufacturer rather than Android 6.0. There are a number of threads which make the company sound disorganized at a minimum

There is another post on Amazon which says the device has no MAC address

Any thoughts on security of the Nova Firmware - for example, their ability to track usage, documents and notes?

#4  downeaster59 08-24-2019, 01:08 PM
That's where things get a little confusing. is a site that sells Onyx devices that have been customized for the Russian market. They have unique firmwares and unique product names. Most of the security concerns in this thread seem to be about these Russian versions. The Nova is not one of these Russian versions. For various reasons, I would advise against buying one of those Russian versions.

That said, I have seen threads that have raised similar questions about the official Chinese and US devices from Onyx. However, we'd be hard-pressed to discern whether these concerns are any worse than equally legitimate concerns over what happens to our info with Google or Facebook, to name but two! I don't see Onyx as being a worse security problem than Google or Facebook or others, to be honest.

#5  azw409 08-28-2019, 06:00 PM
I'd strongly recommend looking at the Boyue Likebook devices too. I have a Likebook Mars and it's by far the best eReader I've owned by a long way. I use the Kindle app and Google Play Books and both work flawlessly. The animated page turn renders well and the contrast is excellent.

I did have an Onyx M96C and it was probably my biggest IT purchase failure because it was just unusuably awful. Hopefully the newer models have improved.

#6  downeaster59 08-28-2019, 10:28 PM
I have both the Likebook Mars and the Onyx Nova. I have no problem recommending the Likebook. It's very good. However, I find that the Nova is a little better than the Mars in almost every area. I, too, had a bad experience a few years ago with an Onyx (the T68, when it first came out), but Onyx seems to have gotten much better at quality control. Either device will work well, but I would still pick the Nova by a nose.

#7  azw409 09-03-2019, 09:21 AM
That's good to hear, as I was thinking of 'upgrading' to a Nova Pro rather than Muses as I wanted to use a stylus for notes. I did briefly own an Alita but sent that back because the note taking app was pretty bad and overall it was just not worth $500.

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