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Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe is a premium reader with protection against moisture

Company Onyx Boox has revised the concept design to its pocket e-books, changing like the ergonomics and the type of materials used. One of the first readers in the new version, available in Russia, became Robinson Crusoe.

New Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe inherited from the previous generation of books, which includes models of Darwin, Magellan, and others, perfected ergonomics, recognizable style and the premium nature of execution, plus the specific case of this model it is possible to observe advanced by the standards of e-readers sold in the Russian crisis, complete set.

In this article we will test all the functionality of Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe, the most relevant for most consumers, and consider its autonomy, because the ability to work for weeks on a single charge is almost the main thing that distinguishes e-books from tablet computers and smartphones.



The book Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe, though not positioned as a premium, but tries to be itself, and this manifests itself already at the level of packaging, made in a very minimalist style. The packing cover, fastened to two strong magnets, giving the buyer information only about the name stored on the device, and nothing more – no image of the book itself.

Small render is placed in the upper left corner of the bottom of the box, but its size is small and did not allow us to estimate the appearance of the reader, so this will have to turn to the Internet. But in the presence of a fairly detailed list of specs and a small list of the capabilities of the device, which will be compared with competing models.

The package itself is made of very durable cardboard white. All labels marked in black and the contrast looks very stylish. Total for the beauty, quality of workmanship and the features list put a plus, but for the lack of picture books drawn minus.



The vast majority of electronic books with a screen 6 inches in Russia sold as a set with only one USB-cable for synchronization with PC and charging from it, because on a network the memory manufacturers often save. In the case of Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe this is not – in the box with this book is a lot of interesting.

Of course, the data cable is also supplied in the kit, but with him there is a charger at 1 amp, a fairly detailed manual, a warranty card and that I often have to buy separately and for more money.

We are now about the corporate cover, which the reader awarded at the factory. This cover protects the gadget from all sides and even shows some smart functions, including the book the sleep mode and turning the backlight on its screen in the closed state.



Information about the capabilities of the hardware and software component of the book Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe, the buyer may find in the box, instructions and on the official website of the manufacturer, but only in the latter case, the information will be as detailed as possible. All of them are listed below.

screen: E Ink Carta Plus touchscreen, 16 shades of gray, 1448х1072 pixel;

– backlight: Moon Light;

– glass: strong, Asahi Glass;

– processor: 2 cores, 1 GHz;

– memory: 512 MB of RAM, 8 GB ROM, microSD up to 32GB;

interfaces: microUSВ 2.0, microSD, Wi-Fi 802.11 n;

– battery: built-in, Li-polymer, 3000 mAh;

– operating system: Google Android 4.2, a proprietary interface;

– housing: aluminum;

– casing color: black;

– working with files: TXT, HTML, RTF, FB2,, MOBI, CHM, PDB, DOC, DOCX, PRC, EPUB, CBZ, PDF, DjVu, JPG, PNG, GIF, BMP;

– dimensions: 159х144х8 millimeters;

– weight: 205 grams;

features: protection from moisture.


The book is positioned as a device for read protection from scratches and damage when exposed to moisture. The first thing we checked these statements.


Protection from moisture and scratches

Protection class Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe from moisture (note, not water) by the manufacturer is not installed, so sink it in the tank with the liquid, we did not. Instead, the reader was “accidentally” tipped a glass of water, he then spent over an hour in a room with high humidity levels, and this was followed by a test of its operation in the rain.

All the test, the device survived with flying colors, except that the rain sensor does not always work on touch, but no more. A week later, after the experiment, the book is still alive and functioning properly. Total, the gadget deserves the right to be moisture resistant.

Flushing Onyx Boox Robinson Shioe in water is not due to the lack of stubs for the interfaces. Protection from water here applies to all internal components – they are additionally treated with a special varnish.

Asahi glass on the front panel copes with its functions. Resistance class not reported, but the owner spent the afternoon in a bag in the same compartment as the car keys, and the front part did not lose marketability. Metal painted part test did not, putting on her protective case.



Design Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe compared to the previous generation of books has changed: housing is much smaller due to the reduced thickness all four of his screen and the front panel is completely enclosed by glass, in this case power. The back panel is now made of metal under the screen and on either side of him there are no more buttons, and the display is no longer recessed into the body, which improves the perception of information.

Buttons that were previously on either side of the screen, now placed on left and right side of the case and become significantly less. The front perimeter of the front panel there is a small slightly protruding plastic edge to the book can be put on a flat surface face down without fear of damaging the glass.

Metal rear panel “Robinson” does not carry any functions, ASIC’s information – it includes certain details about the book itself and nothing more. The entire set of interfaces in this model is located at the bottom end, and it’s the standard microUSВ port for charging and PC connection, as well as the card slot microSD. Next to them is a power button with built-in multicolor led, plus there is a barely noticeable deepening next to the microUSB is the reset button, we during the test, never used.



Importantly, in our view, the difference between the Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe from its predecessors is not even in the housing is compressed, and controls: the early books were easy to scroll through the buttons on the side of the screen, now on the foreground TASCHEN. The buttons in this reader are placed on the lateral end faces, smoothly flowing into the back cover, and their sizes are smaller, so finding them by touch is not so convenient. It’s a subjective thing – to some this decision, on the contrary, will be the best.

The device was much smaller, and its very comfortable to hold in the palm of her hand, turning pages with a finger of the second hand. The weight is not felt, the back panel has a rough surface to prevent slipping, in short, in this respect, all at the highest level.

Two hands Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe is also quite comfortable to hold, and his thumbs immediately fall on the edge of the touchscreen while the index are in search of the end of physical buttons. The rear panel is extremely difficult to get fingerprints, but the panel front, on the contrary, very easily soiled, while cleaning microfiber done without problems.


Build quality

The articulation of metal and plastic in mobile devices is always the risk of backlash and squeaks, but the Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe. The book is pretty good with tests in torsion and bending, without making any extraneous sounds and not deformed.

On the downside, the build will include the side buttons – they just much backlash, and it seems that they tend to fall out of planting holes. Other claims on the build quality of the book have emerged.



Complete case is designed to protect the book from all sides, even from the front panel. The device is held firmly in its four legs at the corners with velvet internal coating, scratchproof body, and its loss is excluded.

Material of outer cover is quite durable and has shown to be resistant to daily use. The inner part of the case is covered in black velvet, plus the upper part of the cover carries a built-in magnets that not only hold it from disclosure, but also translate the book into sleep mode, interacting with the Hall sensor inside it.

The practical use of cover is very high, so don’t suggest to remove it from the reading room – extra protection never hurts.



Display Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe is a monochrome E Ink panel, Carta Plus generation, the most modern at the time of writing the review. The screen displays 16 shades of gray and has very wide viewing angles – 178 degrees vertically and horizontally. He did not fade in the sun, staying 100-percent readable, and it is a feature of the panels is based on electronic ink.

Generation Carta Plus provides not only the support of high resolution, but excellent contrast: the sun, the background becomes almost white, creating the maximum convenience of reading black text of a book or document.

Backlighting Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe based on a number of led Moon Light, and we’ll talk about it in the next section, but note here that there are quite strong for this segment, the play of light at the bottom of the display. They manifest themselves already at 30% brightness Moon Light.

The sensor layer responds to the touch instantly, even if you touch with wet fingers. The same can be said about updating the image on the panel – all done with almost no delay, which can not but rejoice.



Screen Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe illuminated from below by a number of led Moon Light, flood of his milky-white color. The brightness here, and even over – apparently, the producer was taking with the stock.

For comfortable reading at a standard ceiling light only 15-20 percent brightness Moo Light, and if you really want the perfect contrast of font and background, it is possible to put on 50 per cent and higher value is possible and not to choose, which will have a positive impact on the power consumption of the battery.

In complete darkness 10 percent of the brightness is also enough for comfortable reading, and the sun illumination is invisible even at 100 percent, so you can turn it off. The range of brightness settings is very broad, and the lighting does not affect the eye fatigue from extended reading.



The book Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe is powered by Rockchip RK3026 CPU with a Cortex A9 (information from Yandex.Market) and a frequency of 2×1 GHz. Its features, coupled with 512 MB of RAM is enough for fast opening heavy files: for example, a PDF document at 300 MB with formulas and scanned drawings start in 20 seconds. Of course, the usual books in FB2 reader clicks for a few moments.

Overall, the performance of “Robinson” will be enough for quick opening of files of almost any size, but it is important to remember that this is not a professional solution, and do not need to require to start overwhelmed 1 GB PDF and DJVU.



Owner is controlled by the operating system Google Android 4.2 with a proprietary shell from Onyx. The interface works very quickly and has a high degree of intuitiveness – for his development even for the inexperienced user will take no more than 5 minutes.

All beautifully drawn and stylish, plus included is a collection of useful apps – calendar, calculator, browser, and read statistics to track for example how much your child reads daily.

Books and documents open in Oreader – excellent in our opinion the reading program, which has all necessary functionality, including zoom text on the fly using a standard gesture with two fingers, as on smartphones. If you want you can download any other reader – has access to Google Play when connected to Wi-Fi network. On the side buttons you can assign various options for action when short or long pressed by selecting the desired action in the settings of the book.

Onyx Boox in Robinson Crusoe there is a built-in browser, but for web surfing, the book is not suitable due to lack of contrast when you view the sites – the text often disappears into the background. Yes, and the browser works very quickly.

A list of text formats, interacts with the book, is listed in the section “Technical data”. Note that among them are common and rare, and even EPUB, popular among Apple users, here is also supported.

Work offline

Reader Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe is equipped with a battery capacity of 3000 mAh, lithium-polymer and removable. For devices with a screen based on electronic ink-time of the battery is measured by the number of pages displayed in such a display. In our case, official data on autonomy do not exist, so no comparison, but just note that the power consumption in this model is minimal.

Backlight off “Robinson” enough for approx 19000 pages, but it’s several books with standard thickness. 25% the brightness of the Moon Light dropped to 17,000 pages, 50% – up to 14000 pages. At 100 percent brightness, which, recall, already redundant, the reader is capable to display the 10000 pages of text. In our opinion, a very good result for such a compact device.

The replenishment of the charge occurs via microUSB, without the support fast charging. From complete memory, 1 amp book charge on average for 3 hours, plus a possible charge from USB port of the computer, but it outputs only 0.5 amps, so these 3 hours in this case will turn into 6.

In the end, the autonomy of the Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe demonstrates a very good performance, and you are not afraid to take this book with you on vacation or even a trip without the charger.



The cost of e-books Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe at the time of writing you read the article amounted to 12,500 rubles. Our opinion is based on the current exchange rate of the dollar and the General economic situation in the country, this price is quite justified.

In particular, most of the money you will give for superior screen with excellent contrast, which does not burn and does not fade and is not afraid of shocks thanks to the protective glass. This can be attributed to the excellent autonomy, sophisticated software, modern design, compact size and of course brand case. For this price, the competing models do not offer half of those benefits, so our verdict – if you need a compact pocket reader for everyday use, and if you do not want to use cheap disposable e-reader or tablet, Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe will fit you 100 percent.


Pros Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe

excellent monochrome display;

– durable chassis, strengthened glass;

– developed software;

– exceptional battery life;

– protection from moisture

– extended equipment.


Cons Onyx Boox Robinson Crusoe

– inconveniently located side buttons.

© 2017, paradox. All rights reserved.

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