Sony DPT-RP1 Digital Paper 2020 Latest Updated Review
The black Sony 13.3″ 16GB DPT-RP1 Digital Paper System combines the simplicity of reading and writing on real paper with the convenience of digital features, including easy sharing across devices.
The 13.3″ e-paper display features a 1650 x 2200 resolution and a glare-free screen. You can also use the included stylus to annotate documents, jot down notes, and highlight important sentences.
An e-ink tablet with a stylus that can be used to take notes, or annotate documentsIts Digital Paper tablet is shockingly light, to the point of feeling like a piece of stiff cardboard in your hand
If you’re a book worm, there’s a good chance you’ve upgraded to an e-ink device like Amazon’s Kindle to make it easier to wrangle your library.
But what about the other paper you’re buried in? Will e-ink one day be a substitute for all the notepads and sticky notes strewn across your desk?
Two companies want to replace every last scrap of paper in your life reMarkable, whose tablet we reviewed last year, and Sony, whose Digital Paper tablet is a stunning piece of hardware that’s just a software overhaul away from becoming my perfect paper replacement
- Comes with stylus for marking up documents.
- Only supports PDF.
- Very basic software.
- Stylus is laggy, lacks pressure sensitivity.
The DPT-RP1 is the largest slab of E Ink you’re going to see, and yet it’s as light as an actual pad of paper.
Really, it’s a marvel: a 13.3-inch, 2,200-by-1,650-pixel screen surrounded by soothing matte plastic, with a slightly angled back that still lies flat on a table.
It measures 8.8 by 11.9 by 0.2 inches and weighs only 12.3 ounces.
There’s a single home button at the top of the tablet, where the power button and micro USB charging port are. That’s pretty much it in terms of controls. The design is very simple and elegant
The screen itself doesn’t have a back or front light, and has the slightly gray background of lower-cost Kindles.
At 206 pixels per inch (ppi), it isn’t as sharp as the 300-ppi display on the latest ebook readers, and you can tell that when trying to read very small text or look at maps.
The 16 levels of grayscale are standard for E Ink and are fine for graphs, charts, and maps.
The main problem is that the software here appears to be from 2004.
For one thing, it only reads non-DRM protected PDFs. Not ePub, not Mobi, not CBR, not library PDFs, not any other format.
Just open PDF. Now, you can convert other files to PDF using open-source software like Calibre;
I did this with both books and graphic novels I’d previously bought from Amazon. Charts, graphs, images, and even some hotlinks stayed intact.
But we can’t recommend that as a way of life, as the conversion app could break at any time.
The Sony DPT-RP1 Digital -inch screen makes it unlike any other e-reader, and its E Ink makes it different from large tablets like the 12.9-inch iPad Pro and 12.3-inch Microsoft Surface Pro. Yes, it has competitors, and we’ll get to those later.
But it really scratches an itch that other e-readers can’t.
I didn’t find that itch to involve reading books, as other e-readers read books just fine.
The DPT-RP1 really opened up when I was reading textbooks, sheet music, or heavily graphical travel guides.
It also made a big difference when I was looking at pages of notes and trying to absorb them
I could just read more notes at a time on the big screen than I could on a smaller e-reader.
I can see this becoming a big deal with legal briefs, for instance.
The Digital Paper DPT-RP1’s interface is navigated mostly via a menu that appears when you click the home button.
This is less of a button than it is an outline of an oval that looks like a port should be there.
From there, you can access documents and notes, create new notes, and access settings.
You find the second set of menus, which is more specific to the document you’re currently working on, by tapping the screen with your finger.
There, you can add a new page to a note by swiping left, tap a menu icon to see recent documents, adjust stylus preferences, use the zoom tool, search for terms and change various other settings.
Apps and File Formats
To get documents onto the Digital Paper DPT-RP1 and sync your notes from it, you use its app for Macs and PCs.
It syncs with these over USB, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, but the latter is kind of annoying to set up.
In order to connect the Digital Paper to your machine over Wi-Fi, you need to first plug the slate in to said machine via USB, then open the Mac or PC app, and then add a Wi-Fi network via that app’s preferences.
The Sony Digital Paper is rated for up to one week of use with Wi-Fi on and three weeks with Wi-Fi off. The battery icon remained completely full after a few hours of testing