on November 18, 2011
Finally received the Kindle Lighted Leather Cover for the newest version Kindle. It is VERY lightweight and I had to double and triple check the description considering it states this is a leather cover. The front cover is very thin with a medium-weight cardboard feel to it. The "leather" on the front cover is extremely thin and you can immediately tell the surface will be easily scratched and marred with normal everyday use. The inside of the front cover has a thin microfiber material to protect the screen. The back cover is hollowed out plastic to form-fit your Kindle and snaps in with relative ease.
Using the enclosed graphic instruction card, I removed the Kindle as shown, having to use just enough pressure to make me a bit concerned for someone who would place and remove their Kindle in this cover frequently. However, I plan on using this cover as a full-time solution for both protection and as a light source.
I went ahead and pulled up a book and switched the light on, heading to a closet to see how this looked in complete darkness. The light pulls out of the back cover and is nice and stiff and has a locked full-out position. The spread of the light is greater on top obviously but it does reach the entire screen on the Kindle. There was no glare or reflection and I was able to easily read the page without any noticeable straining.
If I were to choose between this design and the Kindle Keyboard lighted cover, which I have used since its release, I would choose this newer cover. Although it feels flimsy and "cheap" compared to the Kindle Keyboard lighted cover, it makes up for it with its ease of use, no hooks/connectors to worry about and the light "stick" itself seems sturdier than the pull-out plastic flimsy light of the original Kindle Keyboard cover (which, after a year of use needs to be wiggled at times for the light to come on).
I tried a few attempts at taking a picture of the cover in use, but my photography skills are definitely lacking because each picture I took created a glare from the camera which would not be helpful to anyone.
NO batteries to continuously buy or recharge
Sturdy light stick
Lights the entire page
Feels very flimsy and cheap
The cover scratches easily
I plan on editing this review in a week or two after I go through a couple full Kindle charges to see how well this holds up with regard to battery drain.
So I've run through two full charges of the Kindle and am working on my third but wanted to give a head's up on power consumption I've seen so far. The first charge was approx. 7* hours of reading before I got the "pop-up" message about low battery. The second charge was just under 8* hours. If I notice a dramatic change in the next several charges, I'll edit this again.
*I use my Kindle with the light on 100% of the time, with Wi-Fi turned off.
Even though the lighted cover pretty much halves the battery life per charge of the Kindle, I am still super happy with the fact that I am not spending money on any extra batteries. The amount of reading time it allows is more than enough between charges considering I usually don't read more than an hour or so a day, which allows me to go around a week between charges.
Just wanted to follow up that this cover is still going strong after over eight months' of almost daily use. The light stick joint is still stiff so that it extends correctly to light the entire page. There hasn't been any degradation to the battery life of the kindle and I'm still getting a good 7-8 hours of reading with wifi off and light used 100% of the time.
What I mentioned as a con in my original review still applies regarding the flimsy front cover and paper thin leather-over-cardboard texture. I feel that I handle my Kindle (and other electronics) very gently but there are several small scratches all over my cover. There is a high shine and obvious wear on the cover where you can see where I normally hold it while reading. While this doesn't distract from the utility of this cover I still believe higher quality material should have been used to further justify the price of this product.
All in all, I still do not regret this purchase as I have saved several times over the amount I would have spent on batteries over this time period.
on November 22, 2011
I owned a Kindle Keyboard for about a year, and I purchased the leather lighted case for that unit. While the corner light left a little to be desired as far as even lighting, overall I was very pleased with the case. Based on that experience, I went ahead and purchased the lighted cover for my new Kindle. I can't say this experience has as been as positive.
Let's start off with what's good about the case. The Kindle battery powered light is a big improvement. The light is now centered on the screen, so illumination is more even now. I don't use the light often, but in the cases where I do it will be nice to have more balanced coverage. One positive on the case itself is that I appreciate how much lighter this one feels than the previous generation. The hinge area is smaller, which means less of the "spine folding" effect the other one took on after heavy use. I never took my Kindle Keyboard out of the case after it was put in, so the snug fit I have seen complaints about is not an issue for me. It IS tight, though, so if you don't plan to keep the case on full time be aware it may take some effort to get it back out. In my situation, that tight fit is exactly what I want, but your mileage may vary.
Now on to the negatives. The case does feel very cheap, especially with no change in price point. The previous cover felt like a solidly made piece of work, whereas the new cover only feels half as sturdy. The thinness of the case was no doubt done to minimize its weight, so I realize this is a personal issue. Outside the thickness, though, it just doesn't look or feel as well made. The textured surface of the previous model you that leather feel, very much like a real book. Finally, the most stunning oversight is the lack of a closure device. I understand some people didn't like the elastic band, but SOMETHING should have been added to allow the case to stay securely closed.
Overall, this is an average if overpriced case. It's not bad, but in comparison to what came before I have to admit I feel like the quality took a step backward me while maintaining a high price point.
on November 18, 2011
I have had the Kindle Keyboard with it's lighted cover and now I have the new Kindle with lighted cover. I will briefly compare them and then list the pros and cons of this cover.
-The kindle keyboard in the cover is much heavier than the new kindle in it's cover. The new case does a much better job of securing the kindle as well, it is no longer hinged only on one edge, but instead it is form fit inside of a rigid rubber shell that attaches to the back of the new kindle
-The lighting is about the same between both cases, but where the old case lit the screen from the top right corner, the new case lights the screen from the top middle.
-I feel like the old light mechanism was more durable. The light bar on this cover is made out of very stiff, thin plastic instead of the thick rubbery plastic that contained the light on the old cover. It also hinges open instead of pulling out of the case, and the hinge feels subpar.
-The light on the new case is less angled and tends to get in my eyes more when reading than the old kindle keyboard case did.
All in all I still like the new case. It fits the new kindle very well and does not increase the size or weight very much. The leather is somewhat thin but not horribly so and it looks sleek on the kindle. I will be keeping this case.
Compact case that looks very sleek
Tight and secure fit
Uses the Kindle's batteries so no additional power is needed.
Provides adequate lighting across the entire screen.
Lightbar hinge seems very cheap.
Since I only received this today, I cannot yet evaluate the additional drain that this case will place on the Kindle's battery. I will update after I've gone through a few charges.
P.S. - I'd like to add that people complaining about the availability / delay in shipping of this product need to stop. It does not at all reflect the quality of the device, yet all of the negative ratings based on delayed shipments make the product look horrible when it is in fact very nice.
on November 22, 2011
Well the wait is over as at last my case finally arrived! I considered many alternatives while waiting but held out for the Amazon version & I'm glad I did. No other case I've seen online is as thin and compact as this but also provides an EXCELLENT LED bulb which distributes light evenly across the entire page. The first thing you notice when taking it out of its "barely there" packaging is how incredibly light and thin it is. This case is as slim as you can get, yet still provides excellent protection for your Kindle. The leather is smooth & slightly glossy but seems to be of good quality but if it changes I will reflect that in an updated review.
It couldn't be easier to install just slightly push you Kindle into the cover and your done. It's very snug & will not fall out once it's in. It's a little more work to remove it but basically just slightly bend the lower right corner down & push the Kindle up to remove. The light is great and has almost ZERO glare at night and finally Amazon put it in the sweet spot to provide nice even light across the page. It really looks great at night!! When your done just close the cover and it pushes the light down for you, no need to touch it again once it's raised up.
The front flap also folds nicely behind the back for one handed reading & once your finished it easily closes right back up & lays flat just as if it were new. I know many customers are posting 1 star reviews because of the long wait & I don't know why the cases are shipping so late but trust me, it's worth the wait. The cost is a different issue & I debated taking away a star for the price as for what it is, the case should be closer to the $40 mark but I decided to review the actual product & leave the buyer to decide whether or not it's worth the cost. I doubt many people will find a better case that provides such great functionality with such a slim & light profile.
on February 24, 2012
I read every single review for this cover before I decided to buy it, but I am glad that I finally decided to pull the trigger. I have never had a Kindle or another cover, so my review is based on a first-timer's perspective. This is my feedback:
1) I agree that this cover is expensive. Ridiculously expensive. But, after pricing other covers and other lights, then factoring in that I would have to buy replacement batteries for any other light, it did not seem like I would be saving much money if I bought something else. Plus, the fact that the light is "built-in" was very appealing and turns out to be extremely convenient.
2) Yes, the cover should have had a magnet or something for closure. That was the main reason for my initial hesitation, not the price. I thought about using a rubber band around it, but some people mentioned that a rubber band would look ugly around the pretty cover (which, by the way, is quite pretty in the wine purple color). I ended up knitting a small little sleeve to slip over my Kindle cover to keep the cover closed, for additional protection, and to prevent scratches, because:
3) The cover does scratch quite easily. I agree with one reviewer who did not seem to mind the scratches on the cover, because doesn't that show that the cover is doing its job to protect the Kindle? But, it does sound like the same cover for the Kindle Keyboard was much more durable. It would be nice for the cover to keep looking fresh and new, but I would rather my Kindle be protected than for my cover to look perfect. My little knitted sleeve is helping with that, but I know a lot of people wouldn't want to use an additional cover.
4) Some people commented that the cover added too much to the size and weight of the Kindle. Really? How small were the books that you people were reading before you got the Kindle? Maybe it is because I am a new Kindle owner, but I think this cover is small and light-weight, and I have an additional knit sleeve over the cover. I am used to carrying around actual books, and the Kindle in this cover is smaller and lighter than any of the them.
5) A few reviewers mentioned that the cover prevented them from using the side buttons on the Kindle properly. After reading all the reviews, it seems to me that there was a defective batch. My cover fits perfectly. If you order a cover and you have issues with this, I would contact Amazon for a replacement.
6) Some people said that it seemed like they would damage their Kindle if they tried to remove it from the cover since it is such a tight squeeze. I can't really comment on this, because I am not planning on ever taking my Kindle out of the cover. To me, the cover fits so perfectly that it really just seems like a seamless extension of the Kindle itself. I do not see the point in taking the Kindle out of the cover.
7) The light is perfect. I have no issues with it being too bright, not bright enough, too flimsy, or whatever other concerns people have had with it. It is easy, convenient, and only uses the Kindle battery when the Kindle is on and the light is flipped open. Some people have found the light too bright in their eyes and have put a piece of electrical tape on the front of the light to shield their eyes. I think that would be an easy, inexpensive solution if I had the same concern, but I don't.
8) There were reviews that commented on the durability and quality of the cover. Except for the lack of a closure device, the cover seems very durable. I do not think the cover is flimsy in the slightest, and as I previously mentioned, the Kindle fits like a glove inside of it. The front part of the cover also folds back very nicely if you like reading that way.
Hopefully this review helped somewhat. If you are considering it, I definitely would buy it. Return it if you don't like it. I am happy with it and do not think there is a better cover out there!
on December 9, 2011
I have had the Kindle Keyboard and the lighted case for that device for a year now and I've been very impressed with the quality of that case. I just recently purchased the new Kindle and the new lighted case. What a let-down! This new case is a major step backwards in terms of quality and engineering.
First off, let's go through the positives of this case:
1.) The light is now centered over the Kindle, which provides more even lighting than the Kindle Keyboard case.
2.) The rubberized housing in the case has sufficient grip to allow me to feel that my Kindle is being held securely.
That's about it for the positives. Now for the negatives:
1.) The light is very flimsy. The hinge on the swing-out light is loose and the plastic is so thin and light-weight that one decent snag on a sweater or bag will probably break the light right off of the case.
2.) The front cover of the case is far too flexible, providing just above zero protection for the fragile e-ink screen. It wouldn't take much pressure on the front cover to crack the Kindle's screen underneath.
3.) The leather on the front and back of the case has no texture to speak of, so the case is slick in the hands and it scratches easily. Within 30 minutes of receiving my case, I already had a scratch on the front cover and that came from simply putting the Kindle down on my desk and sliding it a few inches.
4.) The rubberized housing which holds the Kindle in place does it's job a little too well, making it difficult to actually press the back and forward page turn buttons on both sides of the device. With the Kindle out of the case, pressing either the back or forward buttons with minimal force gives a satisfying "click". With the Kindle in the case, you have to exert much more force on the buttons to get them to register and the "click" is gone, making it more difficult to determine if you've actually pressed the button or not. I spent about 20 minutes with an Xacto knife and a file to remove a good chunk of the rubber and plastic housing in order to allow me to press the buttons easily again.
5.) There is no method for keeping the cover closed. The Kindle Keyboard cover has a nice elastic band that keeps the cover closed, even when you're tossing it in a book bag. There is nothing on this new cover. So the cover can and will fly open if you aren't careful with it.
All in all, this is a poorly designed case that apparently was not even tested before being shipped out. I could forgive the flimsy cover and cheap leather, but having the rubber conflict with the page turn buttons is unacceptable. I shouldn't have to resort to cutting and filing the plastic and rubber in order to fix a problem that should have been caught on the first day of quality control. The fact that Amazon is charging $60 for a cheaply-made cover that provides almost no protection is completely outrageous. This case would be overpriced at $20.
on November 23, 2011
I was hoping to really like this cover for the Basic Kindle. On receiving it, I am not satisfied at all. The surface of the cover is extremely slick, making it almost certain that you will drop the device. Since there is nothing to keep the cover closed, your Kindle will be damaged when, not if, you drop it. Why didn't Amazon include something to keep this closed? People with arthritis are going to dislike this because of the slick surface. Holding it when closed is tough...it is very slippery to hold on to.
To prevent the light from shining either in your eyes or too directly on the screen, you must hold the device at the perfect position constantly. There is no up or down adjustment for the light, it only swings out. The pivot point and the light arm itself is very cheap and I can't see it holding up for very long. On further examination, the light is not even, it's very bright at the top center and very dim by the time it gets to the bottom of this very small Kindle.
$60 is way too much to spend on this cover. This one is going back.
on December 20, 2011
I had a last-gen Kindle with the leather, lighted cover - it had some flaws. First, it was huge. The spine creased immediately after folding it behind the device during reading, and continued to look terrible from that point on. The Kindle sometimes slid around on the hooks holding it into place and powering the light. That being said, I still loved it.
This newer version is smaller, and I like it less than the previous gen version, but it's still the best and only lighted cover made to fit 'perfectly' on the new kindles.
First I bought the leather cover WITHOUT the light. It fit the new kindle perfectly (no apostrophes needed - the fit is fantastic), weighed nearly nothing and was to be honest the only option at Best Buy worth the time as the new lighted cover isn't sold in stores (yet.) I returned it because I mostly read in bed in the dark, which the lack of light didn't facilitate at all. Otherwise I recommend it over this version.
The lighted cover arrived after a few weeks (no nightmare story from Amazon - yes it was backordered, it was promised to arrive before Christmas and they shipped it out early after about two weeks of waiting instead of four. Thanks Amazon.)
This cover doesn't fit the kindle as well as the version without the light - it seems that the kindle kind of sticks out a bit from the 'frame' area surrounding it on the top. Also, because there's no way to keep the front flap closed (the previous gen version had an elastic strap with classy leather tag) it always kind of sticks up rather than lying flat. This annoys me, but is only minor and probably a non-issue for most people. I would love to have seen some kind of magnetic closure (if this is even possible in a kindle - I assume if iPad can do it, we could have seen it here as well but I'm no e-ink display expert.)
The front cover has the same ultra-soft screen protecting liner, and what I love most, folds behind the device without causing terrible creases in the spine leather. The leather itself is rather weird - it's very shiny and scratches and scuffs easily, but I imagine over time it will end up looking better for it (worn-in) if that makes sense. The back leather is molded to the plastic inner piece, and it seems fairly snug and has a nice, durable feel overall.
The light adds like 3/4" or so to the top of the device, which I don't enjoy. The keyboardless kindle is so perfectly sized, the lighted cover adds some of the minimal height saved at the bottom back to the top. That being said, it's still smaller than the previous kindle/cover combo.
The light is uneven, both in color and coverage. The coloring doesn't distract too much, but the position of the light in this version of the cover is worse than the previous - the light is more in the center of the screen which is great, but it's less 'pointed' at the screen or at least due to the position of the LED bulb if you're looking dead on at the screen the light is too bright to look at. You really have to kind of tilt the top of the kindle forward so you don't get blinded.
It provides protection for the device, is still small enough to be comfortable to hold while reading for hours, and though there are minor fit issues it's still the best option as far as lighted cases go (so far) and I don't feel like the kindle would ever fall out of the case. This version's battery life seems to be on par with the previous but not better that I've noticed yet - the connectors in this case are two very small squares of exposed metal that the kindle presses against when the case is attached.
Overall, the case is not worth $60 or even $50 in my opinion. It's the best fit you'll find with a light built-in, but I would almost recommend the version without the light (which I do feel is worth $40) and a cheap book light over this with the real benefit here being that you don't have to carry the book light around with you. I don't love it enough that I'd buy it again, but I don't hate it enough to return it.
on December 9, 2011
Not sure what everyone is griping about but this case is perfect. The leather is not thick and plush but nice nonetheless. The case folds back so that you can read without holding it with two hands. The light is just magnificent. It works when you are reading or at the main menu, not on the screensaver. It doesn't show show glare and is bright enough to read with in pitch black darkness. I don't think I'd really change anything about this case except to add a closure to it. I carry my kindle with me everywhere and it would be nice to make sure it didn't open in my purse. Other than that it's great.
on December 13, 2011
I finally received my cover on December 12th. It was ordered on October 25th, the same day I ordered my Kindle. That was a longer wait than I was expecting, but I had no shortage of unread paper books on my shelf and will not actually need to rely on the Kindle until sometime in February, so I just left the thing in its box rather than risk damaging it through unprotected use. There is quite a bit of anger over this delay in other reviews, but it really did not bother me too much. I bought a Kindle to supply me with reading material on an upcoming deployment without the weight or bulk of actual books. Since my interest in this device is entirely practical, I expect that not everyone will find my thoughts particularly helpful.
The cover fits the device perfectly, and the light provides more than sufficient illumination to read. I am a bit disappointed that there is no installed strap to keep the cover closed when I may need to stuff the thing in a backpack, but I've been stuffing normal books into backpacks for decades now with little ill effect, so I don't imagine there will be many practical drawbacks to this oversight. Still, I would have liked some way to keep it closed, and it couldn't have been too much trouble, since they're on every other cover out there.
The quality of the leather is another sore area for most people, it seems. I agree that the Kindle Keyboard's cover is of much nicer quality, with a luxurious feel. I agree that this leather looks like it will scratch easily and is extremely smooth, for a thing that's supposed to be held comfortably. Except for the last point, these things do not bother me in particular. I have no interest in duplicating my library on an electronic device, and have no need for it to look like a leatherbound Shakespeare. The books I have on my Kindle are almost exclusively books that I wanted to read, but didn't necessarily feel the need to kill trees over or have a physical copy to box up every time I move, which is frequently. Newer fiction, popular nonfiction; things like Zero History, The Omnivore's Dilemma and a subscription to Foreign Affairs. This is also part of why I don't really need it to be all that nice visually. If the cover provides adequate protection for the device inside for said device's useful lifespan, I don't mind if it gets shredded in the process, which it very well may. Again, I bought the thing for entirely practical reasons and will be carrying it to "interesting" parts of the world. The occasional character-adding scratch is expected and accepted. I will say that the smoothness is a bit strange. Some texture, like on the Keyboard's cover, might have been nice.
Overall, I'm happy with the purchase. I bought the basic utilitarian Kindle and got a basic utilitarian cover, with the sole indulgence being the installed light. In short, it should do the job, which is enough for me. Your mileage may vary.