E Ink displays offer a paper-like reading experience for products like eReaders, digital signage, and electronic price tags. But Dasung is one of the only companies that makes E Ink monitors, probably because there’s not really that much demand for black and white displays with low screen refresh rates.

But the new Dasung Paperlike Color tackles at least one of those issues. The 25.3 inch E Ink monitor is the world’s first to feature a color E Ink display. First unveiled in July, the Dasung Paperlike Color is now up for pre-order through an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign.

But like most of the company’s E Ink displays, it ain’t cheap: retail prices start at $1,899, although Indiegogo early bird backers can reserve one for $1,499. The company says the displays should begin shipping to backers in December, 2023.

The monitor features a 25.3 inch E Ink Kaleido 3 display that features a color filter laid on top of  an E Ink screen, allowing the monitor to display 4096 colors (rather than the usual 16-shades of grey).

In other words, you get some of the benefits of E Ink without sacrificing the ability to view color content. That means you get a high-contrast, low-power screen that can be viewed using only ambient light. There is a front-light that can illuminate the screen if you need it, but by shining LED lights on the screen instead of outward toward your eyes, many people find that front-lit E Ink displays cause less eye strain than LCD or OLED displays.

But Kaleido 3 technology is an imperfect solution for many of the tasks you may normally perform on a computer.

Not only does it have a limited color palette, but colors tend to look muted or washed out when compared to LCD or OLED displays, the screen refresh rate is still much lower than you’d get from other display technologies, and color content is displayed at lower resolutions and pixel densities than black and white content.

Normally Kaleido 3 displays have a native pixel density of 300 ppi for black and white content and 150 ppi for color, but I’m not quite sure what those figures are for the Dasung Paperlike Color. According to marketing materials, the monitor has a 25.3 inch, 3200 x 1800 pixel display, which means it can show about 145 pixels per inch. But Dasung doesn’t say if that’s the greyscale or color resolution (I’m guessing it’s B&W though, as that’s the same resolution used for the original Dasung Paperlike 253 and Paperlike 253 U, as well as other E Ink monitors like the Onyx BOOX Mira Pro).

In other words, the Dasung Paperlike Color is probably most useful if you expect to use a display primarily for reading rather than gaming or watching videos… although there is a high screen refresh mode that makes it possible to watch videos, as long as you’re willing to trade some graphics quality to do that (you may see remnants of previous images on the screen).

Some of the screen’s other features include HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB Type-C inputs as well as support for Miracast and AirPlay screen mirroring, and a stand that lets you tilt the display 90 degrees for use in portrait orientation. There are also built-in stereo speakers.

Dasung is also offering a “Curved Screen” version of the upcoming Color E Ink display, with a “comfortable 4000R curvature.” Prices for that model start at $1,599 during crowdfunding.

This article was first published July 31, 2023 and most recently updated September 6, 2023. 

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  1. Might be a reasonable investment for places with public computers that don’t want kids to sit on them watching youtube for hours.

  2. yo those poor kids forced to watch that video at that framerate… is that a form of punishment?

  3. Stupid e-ink for actual color e-ink technology: As we can see in all pictures and in video there is always a LED light activated inside display because if it wasn’t contrast would be too low and color even more washed. What is the point of having e-ink if you need always on LED light on it. I prefer black&white e-ink where in most cases you can have led light turned on (using it only in dark environments where there is not enough light to read comfortably).

    1. Interesting to know. How do various types of OLED screens compare for you to e-ink for eye strain? I’ve pretty much only used LED, even on my phone.

      1. I find the OLED on my phone much more relaxing to look at than the LCD on my laptop, but I still very much prefer reading things on my e-ink reader.

        But I do kinda agree with the guy above. I (almost) never (want to) use the front light on the e-reader, and color (probably) would make the contrast too low for it to be comfortable to use without the extra front light.

      2. Best for avoinding eye strain is B&W e-ink because in most situations you can use it withot internal light, and even when you need internal light because you are reading “without enough ambient light” (this is not a good scenario, never), you can select yellowish-warm light (I suppose in a color e-ink it could be that option doen’t apply because it would render even worse colors, from a yet very washed-out colors). In this color e-ink monitor I see a bluish LED light all time turned on.

        A good OLED screen with enought resolution (it is normal today) and preferably RGB pixel distribution has two very good points: 1/ You can use dark mode, even true black background and you will have less light emmitted to your eyes because there black is no light (something an LCD can’t reach¹); 2/ As contrast is very high you can set low brigthness and be able to read display in good way. But there are two very bad points: 1/ They use pulsing light (it turns light on and off a lot of times each second, and more to regulate varios brightness leves). Here the problem is that frequency is usually too low and that can cause strain (in notebookcheck web usually they test that frequency to show if is high enough or too low), some people are very sensitive to this. Good LCD with LED backlighting use very high frequency pulsing light so there there is not problem (no problem with pulsating light, all other problems from LCD-LED remains). 2/ OLED displays burn-in with repeated or fixed images. This is the reason I don’t want them in a monitor nor in a smartphone, although in smartphones it is less problematic for same users because there is less on hours and less repeated or fixed images versus in a computer monitor. Micro-LED would solve that problem, as they don’t use organic LEDs but inorganic LEDs, but it will take years to reach to monitor or smartphone market.

        ¹: MiniLED LCD is path for that problem if they had a very very high number of local dimming zones. Whentthey say “it have x thousand local dimming zones” (they can have much more LEDs, because each local dimming zone has more than one LED) don’t get shocked: always calculate square root of that number, so it will give you an idea of horizontal or vertical local dimming zones. For example 2.000 zones seems a lot, but its square root is 44,7 so it means there is an array of somethinhg like 44*44 zones, and this show it isn’t so big.