review of the new electronic E-Ink reader Onyx Boox Faust 5

Advanced interface and stylish appearance – this is Faust 5. A new version of the modern “reader” with an E-Ink screen and a touch interface from Onyx Boox. The included case and compact size allow you to take the device with you on trips. Onyx Boox Faust 5 is an electronic library that will always be at hand and will help out on trips and travels.

An e-book is a modern and convenient way of reading that replaces paper books, magazines and newspapers. Screens with E-Ink Carta Plus technology are as close as possible in terms of display quality to traditional print media, and special backlighting makes reading from such readers as comfortable as possible. One of the most affordable examples of e-readers with an E-Ink screen is the new Faust 5 from Onyx Boox.

Brand Name: Onyx Boox
Model: Faust 5
Type: e-book/book reader
Display: 6″ E-Ink Carta Plus, resolution 1024 x 758 pixels, pixel density 300 ppi, 16 colors (grayscale)
Illumination: Yes, type MOON Light 2
Controls: touch (gestures), main button, side buttons, power button
Memory capacity: 2 GB RAM, 16 GB flash memory
Battery: built-in, 3000 mAh 3.7V
System: Android 11
Interfaces: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB-C, MicroSD

What I like about image readers from Onyx Boox is a thoughtful approach to everything, from the interface to the packaging. Positive emotions appear just from one glance at the packaging. The Onyx Boox Faust 5 version is a very good option as a gift for a person who is passionate about books.

You can work with the reader “out of the box”. The device comes charged (~80%), with preloaded books. The package includes an interface cable (USB-C, short, for connecting to a computer as a storage device and for recharging), as well as a user manual and a warranty card. The cover is also included, installed directly on the reader.

The appearance of the e-book has common features with the general line of Onyx Boox readers. This is a laconic minimalist design with the main button located in the center of the bottom panel. Next to the button is a short inscription of the Boox brand. I also note the barely noticeable side buttons for navigating through documents.

The main button has a clear click, allows you to return “Home” when reading and call the start menu. For the convenience of scrolling through the pages of books while reading, as well as for navigating in context menus, side buttons (left-right) are provided. On the top panel there is a power button that allows you to quickly wake up the device. You can control reading and navigation not only from the buttons, but also using the touch screen with support for gestures and hot keys.

You can store files both in the internal memory of the device and on an external drive. You can use standard MicroSD type memory cards, including the microSDHC type. As for the built-in flash memory, a little less than 8 GB is available to the user.

You can copy books by simply connecting the device to a computer or laptop via a USB-C cable (included). The reader is defined as a drive and both built-in memory and external memory are available.

OTG drives and adapters for USB flash drives also work. You can transfer books via mail or directly download via WiFi connection. The device is charged via USB-C, from standard adapters.

Definitely liked the original case included. This is a hard case with a textured leatherette cover. It looks very decent, and most importantly – you do not need to purchase a separate case after buying an e-book. I note that, unlike books in the Onyx Boox Volta series, the case does not have active buttons.

The size of the book in the case is about 17 by 12 cm, the thickness is less than 1 cm. It fits perfectly into the pocket of a jacket or jacket, practically does not take up space in a backpack or bag. The plastic “skeleton” of the cover and the velvet lining inside will help you on long trips and with active use of the reader, protecting it from external influences.

Also pleased with the traditional screensavers from Onyx Boox, which greatly diversify the operation of the reader. So, while waiting, the electronic reader does not turn off, but goes into an economical mode, in which the image “freezes” on the screen, without wasting electricity.

For Faust 5, a special backlight of the MOON Light 2 type is provided, including the proprietary SNOW Field technology, which allows minimizing artifacts on the screen and automatically redrawing the image. You can adjust the intensity and hue (warm/cold) either on your own or by selecting one of the presets.

Another “feature” of Onyx Boox readers is a special button on the touch screen that allows you to call up a context menu with shortcuts for quick actions at any time. The position of the button can be changed, placing it in a free space on the screen, according to your preferences, and the actions of the shortcuts can be customized.

There are also additional menus (curtain), notification menu, reader system settings page. Literally in a couple of movements, you can change the reading mode, adjust the backlight, activate the TTS (Text-to-speech) function for voice acting of text documents or access cloud services, mail or external storage.

The Android system installed on the device allows not only downloading applications from the store, but also installing from external media. Two reader applications are preinstalled (AlReaderX Pro and Neo Reader 3.0), but you can use any others of your choice. There is also an audio player, translator, calculators (including engineering and graphics), an email client and much more. You can connect wireless headphones and speakers via bluetooth. The system has many settings, you can customize context menus, button actions, make a quick launch of applications, etc.

I note that four display modes are provided for the screen at once – these are standard mode, high-speed mode, X and A2 modes. All modes differ in the way they are drawn, first of all, this is reflected in the clarity of the font. The normal mode allows you to get the most contrasting text outline, and the high-speed mode provides the fastest rendering (suitable for graphic documents). I give examples of modes below (normal – high-speed – A2 – X).

Literally in a couple of clicks, I installed the Device Info HW application, which helps to check the “innards” of the device. You can clearly see the memory available to the user (about 8 GB), as well as the type of processor and GPU.

It was also interesting how convenient it is to read manga or various graphic comics in an e-book. The application installed without any problems, dragged the database / history from the smartphone, and also updated the plugins. When preparing screenshots, I paid attention to a feature – the images saved by the device are color. The screen, respectively, is monochrome. It is quite comfortable to read. I guess I’ll leave the reader just for reading the manga.

Thus, Faust 5 has a fairly nimble system based on Android 11 and ample opportunities for exchanging book files, which is very rare among readers with E-INK displays. In any case, Onyx Boox e-readers are one of the most affordable and very advanced in their “stuffing”. The Faust 5 is equipped with all the necessary interfaces, lighting and makes it easy to store an entire library of books…in your pocket!

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