PDA

View Full Version : Denshi Jisho



shesgotacigarette
April 22nd, 2009, 15:29
Do you have one? Discuss how useful it is and what kind?

Tarquin
April 22nd, 2009, 16:02
I have a Sharp one, it's great however you need at least basic comprehension of Japanese to get any kind of use out of any model.

Hiragana / Katakana is a requirement.
The Canon models sometimes have an English menu system too, otherwise you need a higher level of Japanese to navigate round the thing.

Best to stick to a paper dictionary if you're unsure.

UPGRAYEDD
April 22nd, 2009, 16:05
Sharp papyrus.

It's useful. But you do need a lot of Japanese to work through it.

The English to Japanese is a bit tricky to use because you put in a word and you'll get multiple definitions all of which are in post college level Japanese with no furigana so you need to then figure out which word you really mean. But there are usually example sentences that let you narrow down the pick.

AliDimayev
April 22nd, 2009, 16:51
I have a Canon Word Tank. Does the trick, though I still prefer the paper dictionaries if I have the time and can look stuff up at my desk.

Gezora
April 22nd, 2009, 17:23
I have a Canon Wordtank and a Langenscheidt pocket paper dicitonary (the kind with the yellow vynil cover). I usually carry one or both in my bag whenever I'm out and about. I would definitely start with a small, decent paper dictionary and get the electronic one in addition, unless you already know a ton of Japanese.

Wakatta
April 22nd, 2009, 17:31
DS + Rakubiki Jiten. Add on Kakitori-kun for another 30 bucks or whatever it was and you end up with, for less than $200, a really handy and compact write-able dictionary setup, plus a great kanji-learning game.

I guess it's probably more limited than a "real" dictionary, but honestly, I haven't run into any problems with that so far. The interface is also pretty intuitive.

mattyjaddy
April 22nd, 2009, 19:37
I started with the DS dictionary. I then got a kids Japanese-Japanese dictionary so I could keep it all in the language. The DS dictionary is pretty easy to figure out and use. It served me well. The kids dictionary is pretty tough starting out, but after a while you get used to having a blurry feel for words. It's sometimes better than having slightly off translations. And it keeps it all in the language so more acquisition can happen. Make sure to get a kids dictionary with furigana. Not all have it.

Eventually I outgrew the DS dictionary as it didn't seem to have words I was looking for. This was at a time when I was really reaching high with my reading. So I got the Sharp Papyrus. It has a writing pad. I disagree with what others have said. You don't need tons and tons of Japanese to use it. I got mine after about 9 months of study. As long as you can figure out how to work it, you'll be fine. Get a Japanese friend or teacher to help you get started if you can't figure it out on your own. Having one with the writing pad is key though if you want to look up kanji. Otherwise, you can look things up with kana or romaji. (Just figure out how to select which input you want.) Going from English to Japanese will indeed require knowledge of kana. Knowledge of kanji is very helpful, but you can get around it with the S Jump button. It allows you to highlight any word you don't know in a definition and look it up. You can keep looking up words you don't know until you've got it worked out. And you don't ever lose the original definition. You can just go back. On my good days, I try to keep it all in Japanese and use the SJump button to keep looking up words in Japanese until I can figure out the original definition which was also in Japanese.

I find my denshi jisho extremely useful and would recommend getting one to people learning Japanese. When is up to you.

Wakatta
April 22nd, 2009, 19:45
I'm not sure which DS dictionary you're referring to, but Rakubiki has J-J as well as E-J.

dombay
April 22nd, 2009, 21:21
Canon G80.

Had it for 3 years. Love the thing.

I use it for both Chinese and Japanese and sometimes to look up the odd English word. Love the thing.

They're pricey though. Only really comes recommended if you are into Chinese as well as Japanese.

Avocado
April 22nd, 2009, 22:00
I also have a Canon Wordtank, and I love it. There aren't any English menus, but it's pretty easy to figure it out, so it's not too much of a problem. There also isn't a writing pad (which would be really useful, but I got it for free so I can't complain), but I've been getting along fine without it. If I don't know a kanji and can't figure out the reading from the radicals, I'm usually able to look it up using the number of strokes/known radicals.

+1 on how it's tricky to go from English to Japanese, but if you go into the thesaurus it's pretty easy, especially since they usually put the Japanese word in furigana.

I don't know what I would do as someone living in Japan/learning the language without it. Possible, but it makes life sooo much easier, I find.

Virus FM
April 23rd, 2009, 01:06
DS kanji sono mama rakubiki jiten. I will love it until my last breath, used it every single day for a span of years. It won't help you read like, Tokugawa literature or anything, but then if you need something hardcore, you're probably not out and about, and so there's always Jim Breen.

Rachel1404
April 23rd, 2009, 03:30
I don't know what I would do as someone living in Japan/learning the language without it. Possible, but it makes life sooo much easier, I find.
With a recommendation like that I definitely want to get one of these now.

Did you guys buy yours before you went to Japan or once you got there?

Does anyone know any good links to online stores?

nHx
April 23rd, 2009, 04:18
Try ebay (s'where I bought mine) or i think www.thejapanshop.com (http://www.thejapanshop.com)might have a few

Eira
April 23rd, 2009, 04:48
I have the rakubiki jiten and a Casio Ex-Word. It's another one where you need at least a basic understanding of Japanese to get your money's worth, but I like it a lot.

Hikari
April 23rd, 2009, 07:04
I bought mine (a Casio Ex-Word) from White Rabbit Press (http://www.whiterabbitpress.com/), the makers of the popular flashcards. It took three days to arrive from Japan and so far I am really happy with it. The menus are all in Japanese but it is very easy to figure out to be honest, as long as you can read hiragana and katakana. I also bought an electronic form of Jack Halpern's Kanji Learner's Dictionary which is really useful.

Avocado
April 23rd, 2009, 07:17
Someone who I met here who had studied English for a year in college gave hers to me. It was definitely an awesome (and unexpected) gift, and if you can find such a benefactor I suggest you do ;)

mattyjaddy
April 23rd, 2009, 08:38
Wakatta - You're right. I didn't mean to misrepresent the DS dictionary. At that point, the J-J was beyond me. I should have said that the kids dictionary was purchased to keep it all in Japanese that I could understand, or at least look up easily since it's all furigana'd. I don't think I ever used the DS dictionary to it's full potential, but regardless, for my reading material, I felt the J-E dictionary was inadequate. Perhaps, the J-J section had a wider range, as is true with my Papyrus, but at the time I couldn't use it effectively.

One thing that I have to say about the DS that I loved much more than my Papyrus was the writing pad. Since I used Heisig to learn kanji, I knew the stroke orders and directions very easily from the beginning. I found that the DS recognized kanji based on these rather than on the look of the finished written kanji. This meant I could write very fast and sloppily and it would still recognize the kanji. I could almost stay in the exact same spot writing stroke over stroke and it would still get it as long as they were in the right direction in the right order. The Papyrus I think works on the look of the finished product more. That or it is trained to recognize how adults normally handwrite kanji which doesn't always look like the printed kanji or the way students are taught to write kanji when they are learning them. Similar to how an adult's written roman letters don't usually resemble the alphabet they were taught in grade school. So I sometimes have trouble getting it to recognize kanji that I know I'm writing correctly. It just takes me more time to look up kanji with the Papyrus than with the DS.

Hyakuman
April 23rd, 2009, 09:41
I have the Canon Wordtank G50. Bought it some 3 to 4 years ago, and I still use it a lot today. I like how it doesn't have the "writing input" method for kanji lookup because you're then forced to look kanji up like a traditional kanji dictionary -- ie. through number of strokes, radicals, pronunciation of radicals, etc. Really helps you remember how to read kanji well.

I stupidly imported mine from Japan before I went to Japan the first time, and ended up paying some $350 for it. Using the thing was a little overwhelming at first because my Japanese sucked, but after fiddling around with it for a while it's like second nature.

13tales
April 23rd, 2009, 10:11
Get an ipod touch, then buy Japanese (http://www.codefromtokyo.com/japanese). It's pretty much replaced every other dictionary I own, paper or electronic. It uses the Jim Breen database (but doesn't need wifi connection), allows kanji lookup by writing it on the screen (if you turn on chinese handwriting input) or by radical, allows you to compile your own vocab lists, contains lists of proverbs, counters, allows you to view entries/kanji by radical/stroke count/school year or JLPT level AND gives you a countdown to the next JLPT test. Best dictionary ever.

UPGRAYEDD
April 23rd, 2009, 11:15
Get an ipod touch, then buy Japanese (http://www.codefromtokyo.com/japanese). It's pretty much replaced every other dictionary I own, paper or electronic. It uses the Jim Breen database (but doesn't need wifi connection), allows kanji lookup by writing it on the screen (if you turn on chinese handwriting input) or by radical, allows you to compile your own vocab lists, contains lists of proverbs, counters, allows you to view entries/kanji by radical/stroke count/school year or JLPT level AND gives you a countdown to the next JLPT test. Best dictionary ever.


Does it have the same example sentences as Jim Breen?

Tarquin
April 23rd, 2009, 11:20
if you have an ipod touch i recommend getting Kotoba, it's free :)
I used to have a G50 but got fed up of the lack of of a touch panel for Kanji (particuarly for my translation exams), so I got the Sharp Papyrus.

The DS is a good one for starting out to be honest, I would go with that. When you get used to it a bit think about upgrading, there isn't much in day-to-day life that isn't in the DS one.
If you're a beginner it's kinda pointless to spend that much money when you potentially wont get the full use of it just yet, better to get the DS dictionary for cheap and then upgrade, rather than be overwhelmed. Small steps, kids!

AliDimayev
April 23rd, 2009, 11:23
I really can't stress enough, though, how I think it is important to get fluent with a paper Kanji Dictionary. Forcing yourself to quickly identify radicals, pronounciations, and stroke count are very important, I think. Plus the more familiar you become with doing those things, the better you will get at Kanji. once you have many of the radicals memorized, then you can use your electronic dictionary more.

I know in my post the other day I wrtoe two disgusting looking Kanji. i did that on purpose (and at least two of you fell for the bait by saying something about them). I thought the "Look at me! I can write kanji!" would have been a clue was joking around. The point it, I think stroke order is very important; and it is not even that hard to master. I would say stroke order is only difficult in the beginning, but once you have mastered maybe even just 100 kanji you will have (without even memorizing an offical set of rules) obtained the ability to look at most kanji and know instantly the proper stroke order.

Tarquin
April 23rd, 2009, 12:06
man Ali, that was....coherent...

Hyakuman
April 24th, 2009, 09:03
Does it have the same example sentences as Jim Breen?

I would ask this too. There is definitely no point in getting a dictionary for practical learning if it has no example sentences. Those are so helpful.

Hyakuman
April 24th, 2009, 09:04
I really can't stress enough, though, how I think it is important to get fluent with a paper Kanji Dictionary. Forcing yourself to quickly identify radicals, pronounciations, and stroke count are very important, I think. Plus the more familiar you become with doing those things, the better you will get at Kanji. once you have many of the radicals memorized, then you can use your electronic dictionary more.

This is why I love my G50. It has the traditional kanji lookup method and it's awesome.

Virus FM
April 24th, 2009, 10:05
If you don't already know radicals and how to use a paper dictionary, having an electronic dictionary without a write input is good for grinding radical information.

If you do already know that stuff, it's a pain in the neck. I would never consider buying a dictionary without write input. When you're looking up a lot of stuff, the time it saves you is considerable, to put it lightly.

Tarquin
April 24th, 2009, 10:43
This is why I love my G50. It has the traditional kanji lookup method and it's awesome.

This is true, I used my G50 for my first translation exam and it was hell, I simply didnt have the time to look them all up that way, there was a lot of text and not a lot of time!

The second exam went better in terms of time (With the sharp and a touch panel)

hashiriya1
April 26th, 2009, 13:57
My old Casio EX-WORD XD-H9000 has been running strong for years. I also use my DSi when I am looking up kanji.

saritajuanita
April 26th, 2009, 19:29
i have a red casio ex-word (xd-sw6400) and i was getting along without it, but when i finally got it i realized how much of a help having an electronic dictionary really is. it's my best friend, haha.

the japanese answers do all come up in kanji, but you will not find a dictionary that has furigana because these dictionaries are made for japanese people. most electronic dictionaries have a "jump" function though, that will let you select the kanji you want to know how to pronounce, and it will come up with the reading, the compound and its definition in english.

there is also a writing pad which helps A LOT when i'm out and trying to read crazy izakaya menus.

there are also a ton of features, some that i will never ever use. an encyclopedia, recipes, medical dictionary, movie/box office information, sudoku, english-english dictionary/thesaurus, travel phrases in 7 other languages, etc.

i think all/a lot of those things come standard on newer electronic dictionaries, which will probably run you about 300 USD if you buy it in a store. i got mine at eco mall (a recycle/used-goods shop) for ~$160.

i say wait to buy until you get here. then you can go to the electronics store and look/touch all of the different dictionaries and see which one you like best. you might even have a sweet recycle shop nearby with some for cheap

jboze84
April 30th, 2009, 13:26
Slightly off topic but, anyone know which companies have dictionaries in other languages (Spanish). Korean and Chinese are common, but I don't really care about those languages. By dictionary, i mean the sd cards with addon dictionaries. Also, anyone know if these addon dictionaries can be downloaded and installed without purchasing the actual sd cards? Those things are like 8-9,000円!

Hikari
May 4th, 2009, 03:01
Slightly off topic but, anyone know which companies have dictionaries in other languages (Spanish). Korean and Chinese are common, but I don't really care about those languages. By dictionary, i mean the sd cards with addon dictionaries. Also, anyone know if these addon dictionaries can be downloaded and installed without purchasing the actual sd cards? Those things are like 8-9,000円!

When I purchased my ex-word I asked about other languages as add-ons. They had J-Italian/Italian-J and J-French/French-J but it seems like there is quite a good range so I am sure they will have Spanish. I have no idea about downloading though. I also got an add-on on CD instead of SD card so maybe that is an option? You could install onto the internal memory.

I only know about Casio add-ons, but I imagine most of the leading manufacturers will have similar deals also.

Banana Hammock
May 8th, 2009, 15:23
i think i read they start around 5000yen for the one I just got. Pretty stoked on it. 19000yen at amazon.co.jp for the casio 6200.
it has the word in hiragana next to the kanji so it's extra useful. The touchpad is really good too

jboze84
May 8th, 2009, 16:15
I broke down over Golden Week and picked up a Casio Ex-Word 6200 at Yodobashi. Haven't found any English-other language dictionaries yet, but will look more later. I've gotten a lot of use out of it already. It's much easier to look stuff up on it than with the DS software.

PC812
June 6th, 2009, 21:20
Does anyone have dictionaries on their keitai and if so how did you get it? Did you just ask them at the store how to install it? I've been using Tango Town when I don't have my paper dictionary with me, but it uses up air time.

Virus FM
June 7th, 2009, 00:01
Some of the more expensive cell phones will bring up a dictionary when you take a picture of kanji. It's been years since I've been there though so this might be a pretty common feature now.

If you get an iPhone/somethin that is designed for the internet you can just use Jim Breen.

fredbarbarossa
June 7th, 2009, 14:55
If you get an iPhone/somethin that is designed for the internet you can just use Jim Breen.
You don't even need an iPhone/smartphone - any keitai can access Jim Breen.

Virus FM
June 8th, 2009, 07:56
True, I was just thinking of the large screen.

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 00:22
I'm thinking of getting the iPod touch with Kotoba.... is that actually a legit kanji look-up software? I want something I can draw a kanji into and have it look it up for me. iPods come with chinese character handwriting recognition, so it should work for everything but unique Japanese characters...

feckless
June 10th, 2009, 08:56
I'm thinking of getting the iPod touch with Kotoba.... is that actually a legit kanji look-up software? I want something I can draw a kanji into and have it look it up for me. iPods come with chinese character handwriting recognition, so it should work for everything but unique Japanese characters...
I have "Japanese" for the iPhone/iPod Touch. Cost $20 US, but is probably the most used, non-game app on my iPod. Haven't tried the other paid dictionaries, so I can't compare, but this one works well for me (much better than the dictionary on my phone, at least). Handwriting rec also works decently, provided you don't mess up the stroke order too much (though it seems less forgiving than, say, the Nintendo DS handwriting rec).

Virus FM
June 10th, 2009, 09:31
No joke, you can have a seizure on kanji sono mama and it will know what you wanted.

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 10:49
Basically, I either want to buy an iPod Touch (god I want one) and use kotoba or something similar OR I want to buy a DS and that kanji program everyone is in love with.... but I don't know anyone who has it so I can't test it out first and that's kind of a big purchase! I'm worried I'll have a hard time figuring out how it works.

Happyscrappy
June 10th, 2009, 10:56
Basically, I either want to buy an iPod Touch (god I want one) and use kotoba or something similar OR I want to buy a DS and that kanji program everyone is in love with.... but I don't know anyone who has it so I can't test it out first and that's kind of a big purchase! I'm worried I'll have a hard time figuring out how it works.

Sonomama is very simple. You don't have to set anything up - just draw a kanji and click on a translation.

The problem I am having with it is: I keep finding J words that don't have English translations. J-E problems, if you will. Can any of the more denshi-jisho savvy posters tell me what a better non-paper (I want to have something to tote in my pocket in Japan) option for this would be?

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 11:06
I guess one drawback of kotoba with ipod touch is that your stylus is your... fingertip. I have pretty small hands, but it probably is annoying for complex characters.

but oh, how I would love an ipod touch. I'm basically waiting on my pred to find me and tell me how much to bring so I know if I have extra money to spend on these things.

Happyscrappy
June 10th, 2009, 11:30
I guess one drawback of kotoba with ipod touch is that your stylus is your... fingertip. I have pretty small hands, but it probably is annoying for complex characters.

but oh, how I would love an ipod touch. I'm basically waiting on my pred to find me and tell me how much to bring so I know if I have extra money to spend on these things.

College students can buy a $1100 13" Macbook Pro with a free iPod touch right now - if you were a student or know one willing to buy it w/ your money, and need a great lappy, this is a stellar deal. I may sell my old MBP to do this.

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 11:46
College students can buy a $1100 13" Macbook Pro with a free iPod touch right now - if you were a student or know one willing to buy it w/ your money, and need a great lappy, this is a stellar deal. I may sell my old MBP to do this.


Uggghhh don't even remind me of this. I JUST (like 2 weeks ago) bought a refurbished Macbook... not only was the deal not going on then, it doesn't apply to refurbs. Believe me, I wish with all my heart that I had waited and gotten the MBP + ipod touch.... especially since they JUST came out with a battery increase (7 hours total!!) for MBP!

feckless
June 10th, 2009, 11:55
I guess one drawback of kotoba with ipod touch is that your stylus is your... fingertip. I have pretty small hands, but it probably is annoying for complex characters.

but oh, how I would love an ipod touch. I'm basically waiting on my pred to find me and tell me how much to bring so I know if I have extra money to spend on these things.
I just wrote a pretty dang complex character (the 25-stroke 鑰 "kagi") on the iPT and it was pretty easy.

Personally, though, I would NOT recommend an iPT for anything OTHER than quick & dirty look-ups while out on the town, or studying vocab lists on the go. A DS + Kanji Sonomama is actually a very good study tool that does quick look-ups and is much simpler to figure out than a Casio Ex-Word. Using an iPT for study, though, is just plain annoying. I even prefer traditional radical look-ups on my computer dictionary over the iPT, just because the iPT's Chinese-based kanji look-up is pretty hit-or-miss in my experience.

And re: your Mac... Apple has something like a two-week window for returning a previously purchased Mac and upgrading, due to a recent price drop or product-line change. And if you go to the store and explain how you'll be poor in Japan, they might even let you return the computer beyond that time period.

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 12:06
I just wrote a pretty dang complex character (the 25-stroke 鑰 "kagi") on the iPT and it was pretty easy.

Personally, though, I would NOT recommend an iPT for anything OTHER than quick & dirty look-ups while out on the town, or studying vocab lists on the go. A DS + Kanji Sonomama is actually a very good study tool that does quick look-ups and is much simpler to figure out than a Casio Ex-Word. Using an iPT for study, though, is just plain annoying. I even prefer traditional radical look-ups on my computer dictionary over the iPT, just because the iPT's Chinese-based kanji look-up is pretty hit-or-miss in my experience.

And re: your Mac... Apple has something like a two-week window for returning a previously purchased Mac and upgrading, due to a recent price drop or product-line change. And if you go to the store and explain how you'll be poor in Japan, they might even let you return the computer beyond that time period.

Two-weeks after what, though? I bought the computer a month ago, but the "update" on the MBPs came out like...today. Would my purchase date have to be within 2 weeks of the announcement of the upgrade? Either way, I'm probably out of luck. I mean, I got my refurbed MB for $1,099 before taxes/apple care. With the recent price drop and ipod add-on, a BRAND NEW MB PRO! is $1,099, plus $229 credit towards an ipod touch. :(:(:( I really don't care about the refurb vs new and the MB vs MBP thing, it's the ipod touch that I'm sad about.

Anyway, there are worse things in life than only getting a new laptop and not a laptop and an ipod. I'll get over it and probably give apple more of my hard-earned money in due time. :D

feckless
June 10th, 2009, 12:43
Two-weeks after what, though? I bought the computer a month ago, but the "update" on the MBPs came out like...today. Would my purchase date have to be within 2 weeks of the announcement of the upgrade? Either way, I'm probably out of luck. I mean, I got my refurbed MB for $1,099 before taxes/apple care.
Ah... in which case, I guess the return won't work. You said 2 weeks since you bought the laptop in your last post, so I thought I'd suggest it if that was the case.

fredbarbarossa
June 10th, 2009, 16:37
The problem I am having with it is: I keep finding J words that don't have English translations. J-E problems, if you will. Can any of the more denshi-jisho savvy posters tell me what a better non-paper (I want to have something to tote in my pocket in Japan) option for this would be?
If all you want is a quick translation and don't need context, then just use an online dictionary like Jim Breen's on your keitai. They have very comprehensive word coverage.

capn jazz
June 10th, 2009, 16:45
Ah... in which case, I guess the return won't work. You said 2 weeks since you bought the laptop in your last post, so I thought I'd suggest it if that was the case.

I exaggerated :D

Powers
June 10th, 2009, 17:04
Two-weeks after what, though? I bought the computer a month ago, but the "update" on the MBPs came out like...today. Would my purchase date have to be within 2 weeks of the announcement of the upgrade? Either way, I'm probably out of luck. I mean, I got my refurbed MB for $1,099 before taxes/apple care. With the recent price drop and ipod add-on, a BRAND NEW MB PRO! is $1,099, plus $229 credit towards an ipod touch. :(:(:( I really don't care about the refurb vs new and the MB vs MBP thing, it's the ipod touch that I'm sad about.

Anyway, there are worse things in life than only getting a new laptop and not a laptop and an ipod. I'll get over it and probably give apple more of my hard-earned money in due time. :D

Ask! Because it's a refurb you might be shit out of luck, but they do go beyond that 2-week limit sometimes.

Happyscrappy
June 11th, 2009, 05:36
If all you want is a quick translation and don't need context, then just use an online dictionary like Jim Breen's on your keitai. They have very comprehensive word coverage.

I'll be arriving in Japan in August - any suggestions on cell phones that would be good for this? Also, wouldn't I have to connect to the internet every time I wanted to look something up (which would take some time to load)?

feckless
June 11th, 2009, 08:12
I'll be arriving in Japan in August - any suggestions on cell phones that would be good for this? Also, wouldn't I have to connect to the internet every time I wanted to look something up (which would take some time to load)?
Most cell phones can do this (all the ones NOT for the elderly or elementary school students, at least). Takes a few seconds, sure, but it's not bad (gotta love 3G!)... though I've never thought to look up Jim Breen's dictionary on my cell, so I can't really tell you if it's a ridiculous thing to do or not.

Happyscrappy
June 11th, 2009, 10:36
On sonomama today, I was trying to find "rent" as in for an apartment. I typed in "rent", it said "apartment rent" and listed: 賃貸料 . Well...I don't know the first kanji of that off the top of my head, so I have to independently search for it via sonomama. And even then, I'm not sure how to pronounce the word once I know the individual kanji (my #1 difficulty in learning Japanese is that kanji have multiple readings - it would be a snap otherwise).

Is there a device that lets you just click on the kanji given in examples...or that at least gives you the furigana for everything?

enigmaneo
June 11th, 2009, 13:08
A lot of the dictionaries have the Jump feature. I have a Canon word tank G50 and I can select a kanji and jump to the japanese english dictionary.

Virus FM
June 11th, 2009, 16:19
kanji sono mama doesn't let you jump through kanji because it's ultimately a J-E dictionary for Japanese natives, but hey, look at it this way, you'll be inputting more kanji. Active learning and such.

fredbarbarossa
June 11th, 2009, 17:41
Yep, best device for this is a dedicated denki jisho. Almost all the new ones will let you jump to a reading.

Happyscrappy
June 11th, 2009, 20:15
Thanks! I wondered what ppl meant by the jump feature. So..anyone know of a good, approx. $250 or less denshi jisho w/ stylus input?

I have difficulty w/ so many model #s - I can't find sites that list the differences. I don't need non-J study stuff like mp3 players on it, though ;) Also, should I wait til Aug to buy it in Japan (would it be cheaper?)

fredbarbarossa
June 11th, 2009, 22:03
Depends on whether you're confident enough with your Japanese to cope with a model without an English menu or English instructions.

Happyscrappy
June 12th, 2009, 05:21
As long as it's fairly straightforward, I don't think I'd need English menus if it's going to save some $. It might help me find options quicker, but I know about 400 kanji, so generally I can get the gist of menus.

capn jazz
June 12th, 2009, 07:00
Really?? 400/2000 kanji for basic literacy is pretty bad. I know about 800-1000 and I have a difficult time reading instruction manuals.

feckless
June 12th, 2009, 07:30
As long as it's fairly straightforward, I don't think I'd need English menus if it's going to save some $. It might help me find options quicker, but I know about 400 kanji, so generally I can get the gist of menus.
Trial and error and YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RO6PKV25Yoo) are your friends. Who reads instruction manuals anyway? I know people with really bad kanji recognition who use their dictionaries fine.

I don't even know of one with English menus, since these are all designed for Japanese people learning other languages, but I would definitely like to be proven otherwise.

You can find a good one in Japan for 20,000-30,000 yen... or at least I saw a few good Casio Ex-Word models (with handwriting recognition) for 21,000 at a big box electronics store sale last week.

tenderRondo
June 12th, 2009, 09:10
I don't even know of one with English menus, since these are all designed for Japanese people learning other languages, but I would definitely like to be proven otherwise.



Every Canon wordtank I have seen has had an english menu.

Hikari
June 12th, 2009, 09:16
I use a Casio Ex-Word and am nowhere near fluent. Yet I have not had any problems using it despite menus being entirely in Japanese. You can work out most of it from trial and error, and I think subconsciously reading the kanji all the time through the menus/keyboard means you are constantly in learning mode. There is also a 'super-jump' feature so you can jump between dictionaries when looking up words/kanji. That is very useful.

Happyscrappy
June 12th, 2009, 10:10
Really?? 400/2000 kanji for basic literacy is pretty bad. I know about 800-1000 and I have a difficult time reading instruction manuals.

I didn't list the # as some sort of pathetic boast but as a way of noting this isn't the first time I've had to read something in Japanese.

No, I can't just pick up a newspaper and read it all, but I can get the basic idea of "ok, this is asking if I want to go forward one page" or something in menus.

Back to the waiting til I get to Japan: would it be cheaper than buying a denshi jisho online now?

capn jazz
June 12th, 2009, 10:25
I didn't list the # as some sort of pathetic boast but as a way of noting this isn't the first time I've had to read something in Japanese.

No, I can't just pick up a newspaper and read it all, but I can get the basic idea of "ok, this is asking if I want to go forward one page" or something in menus.

Back to the waiting til I get to Japan: would it be cheaper than buying a denshi jisho online now?

I wasn't intending to insult you, I'm just saying that I find it hard to believe you can get the gist of a document when you only know 400 kanji because there's so many more you don't know and because there's a thousand different multi-kanji words that have different meanings than the kanji alone. But if you actually can, then good for you.

Avocado
June 12th, 2009, 10:35
To be fair, dictionaries are really simple to operate, don't really take much knowledge of Japanese at all. I'm sure that a beginner could take 10 minutes fiddling with buttons and use it to fit their purposes.

Buy one in Japan.

kamukamuume
June 12th, 2009, 11:30
To be fair, dictionaries are really simple to operate, don't really take much knowledge of Japanese at all. I'm sure that a beginner could take 10 minutes fiddling with buttons and use it to fit their purposes.

Buy one in Japan.

exactly. many, perhaps most, of us will be using a school computer here in Japan. know what that means? Windows is in Japanese! egads! now granted I am able to navigate partially from memory of the English version, but an intuitive program shouldn't be that hard, especially not if you have ~400 extra hints. that goes for OSes and for electronic dictionaries.

fredbarbarossa
June 12th, 2009, 15:44
So you'll be able to choose from pretty much any model available, which is great, but doesn't help you narrow down your options.

Wait until you get here, and try before you buy. Any big electronic store will let you go in and play with their jishos as much as you like. At least look up a few words just to see how the machine works, whether it lists all the vocab you're likely to want to know and whether the results are presented in a style you find easy to use.

Virus FM
June 13th, 2009, 03:07
but an intuitive program shouldn't be that hard, especially not if you have ~400 extra hints. that goes for OSes and for electronic dictionaries.

Well yeah and no, I mean, keep in mind, how often do you come across words like "water", "life", "study", "gold" (the kind of stuff that fills most people's early kanji study) in Windows?

Plus kanji seem harmless when you can attack them at your leisure, but a screen full of kanji can be like staring the devil in the face.

I used Japanese Windows before. It's not so hard when you do routine things, but when you have to muck around in the back of it, it gets scary.

Happyscrappy
June 13th, 2009, 05:38
Thank you kindly, everyone. I'll just wait 2 months to get it there.

kamukamuume
June 14th, 2009, 22:30
Well yeah and no, I mean, keep in mind, how often do you come across words like "water", "life", "study", "gold" (the kind of stuff that fills most people's early kanji study) in Windows?

Plus kanji seem harmless when you can attack them at your leisure, but a screen full of kanji can be like staring the devil in the face.

I used Japanese Windows before. It's not so hard when you do routine things, but when you have to muck around in the back of it, it gets scary.

I think we also learn things like "back," "forward," "select," etc. that, and a couple times looking up the really commonly used kanji that you don't know should be enough to get a handle on it. ultimately it takes a bit of guesswork and a small time investment, and you'll be okay.

SarahJ27
June 20th, 2009, 12:55
I just got this and I'm in love with it.

Sharp Brain (http://www.sharp.co.jp/brain/lineup/pw-gc590/feature.html)

Avocado
June 20th, 2009, 13:35
Damn that's nice!!!

How much did it set you back?

SarahJ27
June 21st, 2009, 01:13
33,000 (after tax). Not really a bad price for all that's on it. I even found out today it has (narrated) stories and there are some videos and everything. Also you can upload lots of different things onto it.

I definitely recommend it for serious learners.

FiercestCalm
June 21st, 2009, 01:34
So I was wondering... I have kanji sono mama on the DS now and it's served me well in the past. But I'm wondering whether you all think that that is enough or whether it would be well-advised to buy another dictionary to supplement/replace it. I'm at an intermediate Japanese level (solid 3 kyu) so navigating menu screens isn't too hard for me. I love the DS's kanji input ability, so I'm thinking a Papyrus might be right for me. Thoughts?

Avocado
June 21st, 2009, 06:37
Definitely get a real dictionary. I know some people who had Kanji Sono Mama and liked it, but wish they had something with easier kana input. It's also a lot more convenient (imo), and I think I would find navigating with the stylus a pain in the ass.

For more official settings it just looks better than a DS, too.

Happyscrappy
June 21st, 2009, 22:26
Must...have...Sharp Brain...

That's really b.a. - I think I may get that one. What's the diff between it and the pw-ac830?

SarahJ27
June 21st, 2009, 22:42
Must...have...Sharp Brain...

That's really b.a. - I think I may get that one. What's the diff between it and the pw-ac830?
The GC590 is more aimed towards students whereas the AC830 is aimed at older people. It mostly has the same stuff on it, but the student one has a lot of school subject-related things on it and the AC830 has everyday living-related things (like health-related stuff). I didn't get a chance to look at the other one all that closely. To me both had a lot of benefits. I think the one I got had more kanji-learning related stuff if I remember correctly. Mostly though, I ended up with the GC590 because it had better colors (I got green :D). The other one is slightly cheaper though.

I definitely recommend it though! With a micro SD card you can put all sorts more stuff on it (or you can purchase other dictionaries and digital books and such with the usb cable and software that comes with it). The more I play with it the happier I am :D

Happyscrappy
June 21st, 2009, 23:59
Where do you go to see the downloadable content? I'd like to look online and see what extras I can put on there.

Banana Hammock
June 22nd, 2009, 08:25
you can always save 12,000yen and get the sharp sf6200. All the basic dictionaries are the same (you'll prob only use the japanese to english one). With the more expensive models you get more 'frills', like colour screens and images.
Amazon.co.jp: CASIO Ex-word 電子辞書 XD-SF6200BK ブラック 音声対応 100コンテンツ 多辞書総合モデ&#x3 (http://www.amazon.co.jp/Ex-word-XD-SF6200BK-100%E3%82%B3%E3%83%B3%E3%83%86%E3%83%B3%E3%83%84-%E5%A4%9A%E8%BE%9E%E6%9B%B8%E7%B7%8F%E5%90%88%E3%83%A2%E3%83%87%E3%83%AB-5-3%E5%9E%8B%E6%B6%B2%E6%99%B6%E3%82%AF%E3%82%A4%E3%83%83%E3%82%AF%E3%83%91%E3%83%AC%E3%83%83%E3%83%88%E4%BB%98%E3%81%8D/dp/B001P7PULG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1245626665&sr=8-1)

Happyscrappy
June 22nd, 2009, 09:14
I need to find some kind of comparison between these, and see what sorts of downloadable content is available. On the amazon (jp) site, the Sharp Brain is only 23,000 yen in silver. It only ships within Japan, though.

Something in English that lists features between a few different models would really help out. Does anyone know of some sort of a review site or anything like it?

SarahJ27
June 22nd, 2009, 17:03
dqBrainpTCgwu[Cu[x̂ē (http://books.spacetown.ne.jp/bnlib/shoseki.asp)
That's the official downloadable content. There's bound to be more stuff coming out, I would imagine.

You can also put your own images, mp3s and text files on it though.

As for info in English... I don't know of anything.

Happyscrappy
June 24th, 2009, 10:23
Ok, yet another dimension to consider: size. For some reason, I was under the impression that denshi jisho were generally small enough to fit in one's pocket. Korean (yea, we had a couple hundred K students but maybe 25 Japanese ppl at my uni) kids were toting these reasonably small dictionaries - but I'm looking up specs and a lot of these ones are almost an inch thick, and wide as all heck. If I get one of these nicer ones, will I want to carry it around with me? Since I'm not alowed to speak Japanese at work, I'd mostly be using it while out and about with friends I'll hopefully be making. I don't want to lug around some huge Japanese noob machine all the time. At the same time, the Canon c50 (the smallest one I can find) doesn't look like it's all that great, and has no stylus input.

What are your takes on this? I don't think I can afford two denshi jisho's, if that's what you'd suggest.

enigmaneo
June 24th, 2009, 10:47
Mine definitely won't fit in my pocket, but I usually only use it when studying for if I'm traveling and I usually have a bag with me. Why won't you be able to speak Japanese at work? I practice my Japanese all the time at school.

Happyscrappy
June 24th, 2009, 10:58
Mine definitely won't fit in my pocket, but I usually only use it when studying for if I'm traveling and I usually have a bag with me. Why won't you be able to speak Japanese at work? I practice my Japanese all the time at school.

I'll be working at AEON. They don't allow it.

Maybe I'll just get an iPhone... and a DJ later. iPhone for Japanese and Skype, amongst many other things I want to do with one. Too bad there aren't many good kanji programs on it yet.

enigmaneo
June 24th, 2009, 11:09
For a second I thought you were working at the shopping center and thought. That's odd, how will (He/She) speak to the customers. Yeah I have a dictionary on my phone. I use quite often. I just can't look up Kanji.

13tales
June 24th, 2009, 15:09
There's a 3-way review of Jisho Touch, Kotoba, and Japanese, some of the better and most popular dictionary apps for the ipod touch or iphone, here (http://muchtolearn.wordpress.com/2009/06/08/iphone-japanese-dictionary-roundup-my-favourites/)

SarahJ27
June 24th, 2009, 23:58
That's why you get a man-purse. All men here have them :D (I'm going to assume you're a man because you were talking about putting things in pockets.)

Happyscrappy
June 25th, 2009, 05:38
That's why you get a man-purse. All men here have them :D (I'm going to assume you're a man because you were talking about putting things in pockets.)

Hmm well, I guess a 150-post run of being gender ambiguous was impressive enough. Yup.

Thanks for the link to the review 13tales; very encouraging. I just wish these had the jump feature - but at least "Japanese" has kanji input recognition (not Japanese, but hey, I'm used to typing romaji on my keyboard to turn it into kana anyways).

Now I just hope to find Softbank is what's popular in Toyama-shi. I'll be getting a free iPod touch next week with my new macbook pro - but I was planning on selling it and getting an iPhone later. But...I could keep the touch and get a regular Japanese cell if softbank isn't the popular choice. Decisions, decisions.

13tales
June 25th, 2009, 15:36
I don't know that Softbank is really that popular anywhere - regardless, if the signal in your area is anywhere approaching okay (and the staff will show you a coverage map when you go to inquire) it's worth it for the iphone, IMHO. I know the opinion is far from universal, but I *really* hated my japanese phone - enough to pay out the contract early in favour of the iphone. That's me though - your mileage may vary.

Tarquin
June 30th, 2009, 08:45
Canon do a pocketable dictionary but it has no handwriting interface, so if you want that then you're shit outta luck.

Banana Hammock
June 30th, 2009, 15:35
Hmm well, I guess a 150-post run of being gender ambiguous was impressive enough. Yup.

Thanks for the link to the review 13tales; very encouraging. I just wish these had the jump feature - but at least "Japanese" has kanji input recognition (not Japanese, but hey, I'm used to typing romaji on my keyboard to turn it into kana anyways).

Now I just hope to find Softbank is what's popular in Toyama-shi. I'll be getting a free iPod touch next week with my new macbook pro - but I was planning on selling it and getting an iPhone later. But...I could keep the touch and get a regular Japanese cell if softbank isn't the popular choice. Decisions, decisions.

The smaller dictionaries do not have the stylus input. I have a seiko one which is pocket size and really good. The stylus input ones are way big but work with the manpurse option. You'll prob have a messenger bag to carry your stuff around and if you always keep it in there it's useful. I always keep some textbooks on me in case I decide to study.

I live in Toyama-shi and you'll have no problems with softbank in town. If you go in the mountains ie skiing/hiking then softbank sucks. I wouldn't snowboard with an iphone anyways.

oh, and don't worry about looking like a noob with a dj - unless you're asian, you'll be regarded as a noob no matter how long you stay here

Urthona
July 3rd, 2009, 13:21
I went and got a small denshi jisho - XD-ST4100G - wEZ - dq@GNX[h - i - CASIO (http://casio.jp/exword/former/XD-ST4100G/) on sale for about 1.4 man or so and I'm loving it so far but I have a couple quick questions.

Sometimes when I look up a word, I know the first kanji say 広告板 but I don't know how to read it in this case as 広 is usually ひろ but here is こう, is there a way to use the dictionary to change the hiragana to kanji so it limits my results to that kanji alone or do I have to look up the alternate readings first?

Also, is there a way to see what compounds are common for characters like, could I get a list of words that use say 広?

fredbarbarossa
July 3rd, 2009, 14:52
You have a kanji dictionary in there, so use that. You should be able to search for characters by any reading - just stick in ひろ and you should find 広. Not only will it then tell you all the readings for that character, but there should be an option to look at a list of compounds that contain it, and hopefully jump straight to the dictionary entries for those compunds.

Urthona
July 3rd, 2009, 14:59
You have a kanji dictionary in there, so use that. You should be able to search for characters by any reading - just stick in ひろ and you should find 広. Not only will it then tell you all the readings for that character, but there should be an option to look at a list of compounds that contain it, and hopefully jump straight to the dictionary entries for those compunds.

Yeah, I just found that button on the Kanji dictionary. I was hammering at 熟語 in the dictionary hoping to convert the hiragana to kanji but it does work in the kanji dict. Thanks!

Hikari
July 13th, 2009, 08:24
The thing I love about my casio ex-word is that I am constantly learning with it. Not just when I study a certain kanji or use it for translation, but even when I am mucking about with the menus.

It is really straightforward to use so I would recommend even for a beginner. But it is a dictionary that you can grow with - when you get better at Japanese you will constantly be unlocking new dictionaries that you can use. Today I just found out it has an encylopaedia of famous people, places etc. I just love that it is always surprising me like that.

Also if any of you have/get one, I would REALLY recommend download/buying a cd with the kanji learner's dictionary on it too. It's great for learning the proper stroke order, readings and various radicals of a lot of the common JLPT kanji.

edesuyo
July 16th, 2009, 04:15
I have a Canon Wordtank V90 that I got dirt cheap with free shipping from a sale on Amazon-Japan that was targetting foreigners. Needed to be able to verify non-Japanese citizenship and it was like half price. Had it for 2 years and the thing is absolutely wonderful.

Features I love most include:
- touch screen w/ stylus for writing kanji
- stroke order trainer
- trilingual (Japanese, English, Chinese)
- audio output for Chinese pronunciation
- Full English<>English dictionary and thesaurus (this alone almost makes it worth getting)
- Easy cross-referencing into the other dictionaries on the system
- You can drag your finger or stylus across a character or word, then hit enter to view that word in the various dictionaries. Hitting back then takes you to the original definition, making comprehension of difficult definitions more feasible.

Only Downside:
- The dictionary is clearly designed for Japanese learning English, so there is a steep learning curve when you first get it figuring out how to navigate definitions and menus.

xxxsedoxxx
May 3rd, 2011, 21:49
If you are looking for a denshi jisho, i recommend you this japanese electronic dictionary webshop: http://www.denshi-jisho.com .

They have all the new Casio, Sharp, Canon, Seiko denshi jisho and accessories.