Amazon Kindle vs Paperwhite vs Voyage vs Oasis: The Oasis now comes in gold
The Kindle recently reached a milestone: it was ten years old in 2017 and those years weren’t years of stagnation. The decade has seen almost continual development and diversification of the Kindle range, to the point at which there are now several options when considering an Amazon eReader. So much so, two years since the original Kindle Oasis came out, Amazon recently refreshed the line-up to add a new “champagne gold” model. You can read more about this model in our comparison below.
Across the whole Kindle range, you have four models available to choose from, all with different talents and abilities, and that’s not counting the company’s range of tablets, which also offer e-reader facilities.
All Kindles do have a few things in common, though. They all have glare-free screens, use the custom-made Bookerly font, and store thousands of ebooks. They also all draw from the same range of content and offer the same range of services, such as the new Prime Reading and the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, which lets you borrow one book a month from a catalogue of 600,000 options.
This review compares the Kindle, Kindle Paperwhite, Kindle Voyage and Kindle Oasis and takes all of their features into account so you know which one is worth your while – and your money.
The budget Amazon Kindle
If you’re searching for the cheapest e-reader, you’ll probably stop reading here since this model costs a mere £60 (add £10 if you’d like to block ads from popping up on your lock screen). Cost, however, doesn’t come at the sacrifice of quality in this case.
This model’s 6in touchscreen is a decent upgrade from previous models since no buttons clutter the bottom of the eReader. It’s also one of the lightest options out of the four models being reviewed today at 161g. The Kindle Oasis weighs 133g but that’s without the cover; it’s 240g with it on, and the regular Kindle is not much bulkier than the more expensive Kindle Paperwhite and Kindle Voyage.
In fact, there’s very little this Kindle lacks when compared with Amazon’s other e-readers. Amazon says the budget Kindle’s battery can last up to six weeks on a single charge — the same as other models — if the user only has 30-minute reading sessions with the WiFi turned off every day. It’s quick load books and the touchscreen is responsive.
There are two key areas in which the budget Kindle loses out to its more expensive stablemates. The first is screen resolution. Although this Kindle uses the same screen technology as its siblings (E-Ink), it isn’t as sharp and text can look more pixellated as a result. The second is that it doesn’t have a built-in reading light, which means fans of reading in the dark should look elsewhere.
Other than those small shortfalls, though, there’s little to dislike.
The Kindle Paperwhite
The basics of this model are similar to the budget Kindle. Both have a 6in touchscreen, the dimensions only differ a small amount and both are available in black and white.
There are some notable differences between this model and the budget Kindle that could convince you to pay those extra pounds, though. The first is that potential buyers have the choice between Wi-Fi only and 3G models, while budget Kindle users don’t.
The 3G option, which is also available across Kindle Voyage and Kindle Oasis models, allows you to access Kindle anywhere in the world without the need to find a Wi-Fi hotspot.
The immediately obvious upgrade, though, is the increase in the screen’s pixel density from 167ppi for the budget Kindle to 300ppi for the Paperwhite. The Kindle Paperwhite also has a built-in light, which is sure to be welcomed by readers who are tired of getting up to turn the lights off after late-night binges.
The light’s only downfall is that it shortens battery life. However, it’s still impressive the battery can last up to six weeks, although that’s only if you are following Amazon’s specifications and reading for half an hour a day with the wireless connection turned off and light set at ten.
The Kindle Voyage
Why is the Voyage so much pricier than the Paperwhite? First off, the Kindle Voyage has the same pixel density and screen size as the Kindle Paperwhite. Its 4GB storage and quoted battery life are also the same.
The Kindle Voyage also enjoys the addition of a front light, but here is where it outsteps the Paperwhite: it has an ambient light sensor that adjusts the light automatically to its surroundings so you can have the perfect reading setting and the light is both brighter and white than the Paperwhite’s equivalent.
The design of the Voyage is different as well. It a bit thinner and a bit lighter. The screen is flush with the bezels and has a capacitive touch surface. It also has capacitive “PagePress” buttons set into the bezels on either side of the screen that turn the page and give a little dig of haptic feedback when squeezed.
You lose the option of buying a white Kindle, but otherwise, the Voyage is the superior offering. We’re not sure it’s worth £60 extra, though.
The Kindle Oasis (2017)
The range-topping Kindle Oasis has been updated for 2017 and it’s a very different product from the one launched in 2016. This e-reader is more reasonably priced, starting at £230 for the Wi-Fi version, and it has a number of upgrades over the outgoing model.
Chief among these is its larger 7in E-Ink display, which allows you to squeeze more words onscreen and keep the page turns to a minimum but that’s not the only improvement. The new Oasis also has a sleeker, all-aluminium chassis and waterproofing, so all you bookworms who love to read in the bath can now do so without worrying too much.
The new Oasis also debuts a brand new feature: Audible audiobook synchronisation. If you own both the Kindle ebook and audiobook editions of the same title, this allows you to flick between the two seamlessly, with Bluetooth connectivity on the Oasis taking care of audio playback via wireless headphones or speakers.
READ NEXT: Kindle Oasis review
This is, without a doubt, the nicest e-reader Amazon has ever made and it also addresses one of the biggest problems with the original Oasis – its lack of ambient light sensor. Now, if you go from a dark to a light room, the new Oasis will adapt automatically, so you don’t have to adjust the brightness manually.
The new Oasis also has better battery life than the original and it retains many of the originals best features, too, including the handgrip on the back, the orientation sensor that lets you hold the reader left- or right-handed and customisable physical page turn buttons.
Available in graphite, and more recently “champagne gold”, the Oasis Kindle also offers a more fashionable edge. Pre-orders for the £259.99 champagne gold version opened on 13 March with orders shipping on 22 March. For that you get a 32GB, Wi-Fi version. Buy the champagne gold Kindle Oasis from Amazon.
Once again, you’d really struggle to justify spending the extra £120 over the cost of the Paperwhite but if you love your reading and you want the very best e-reader, there’s nothing that comes close.