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Kobo Clara Colour review: Modest upgrades

Kobo Clara Colour review: Modest upgrades

Kobo Clara Colour

Like the Kobo Libra Colour, the newest Kobo Clara Colour gets a visual upgrade in the form of a 6-inch E Ink Kaleido 3 screen. That's not all though, as it has a faster processor compared with the Kobo Clara 2E. Otherwise, everything else is mostly similar, including the fact that the exterior is made from recycled plastic.

Quick specs

  • 2GHz processor, 16GB storage
  • 6-inch E Ink Kaleido 3 display with FastGLR and Dark Mode
  • Kobo audiobook support via Bluetooth headphones/speaker
  • 174g

I found the Kobo Clara Colour's size to be just perfect. It's neither too big, nor too small for reading ebooks. It also slips nicely into the pants pocket without feeling awkward. You control this ebook reader by touching the screen, and this includes turning pages or navigating the UI. It mostly works, but sometimes, I accidentally tap on the wrong part of the screen and I either call up the menu, or go back a page. That can feel a bit annoying. I do think I would love if the Kobo Clara Colour came with physical buttons like the Libra Colour, though.

Kobo Clara Colour
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

The new colour screen for the Kobo Clara Colour certainly feels different. The Clara 2E's display is whiter, perfect for reading in the day with the backlight off. But on the Clara Colour, it feels dull and flat. You'll definitely need the backlight on. While black and white gets you 300 PPI, colour images will drop that to 150 PPI.

I tested with a comic book and found that it's still quite crisp, but the colours aren't very vibrant compared with say, an iPad. That's to be expected, of course. Also, the 6-inch screen is pretty small to be reading comics, especially ones with lots of text. You can zoom in and pan around, but you will need to wait for the screen to catch up. In short, it's not ideal.

Kobo Clara Colour
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

Battery life for the Kobo Clara Colour is decent, with about one and a half weeks of heavy reading with Wi-Fi turned on. I left brightness at automatic, so depending on your usage, it may last longer. After all, battery life is rated in “weeks”, according to Kobo. Other things to note include the fact that the options for fonts aren't the same as the ones on the Clara 2E. So if you're used to a certain font, it may not be available in the Clara Colour. I got over it pretty quickly, though.

The Clara Colour is also just slightly heavier by 3g at 174g. And lastly, not forgetting that Kobo ereaders support book borrowing from Singapore's NLB via OverDrive, but it's easier to borrow through your phone and sync your loans than trying to borrow from the ereader. Believe me, I've tried this a few times and it's painful even with a faster processor.

See Also
Ugreen Steam Deck 6-in-1 Dock

At S$229, the Kobo Clara Colour is a pretty affordable buy if you are in the market for an ebook reader. If the colour display doesn't appeal to you, you can always get the black-and-white version, but the bump in processing power is worth it. Things load a bit faster, and the device feels more responsive. Get it from Lazada, Shopee, or Amazon SG. You can also pick up a SleepCover case or the cheaper Clear Case, but I prefer holding it naked.

Note: Review unit provided by Kobo.

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Performance upgrade with colour

Buy from Lazada
Get from Shopee
Available on Amazon SG

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