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Thread: Best wordtanks??

  1. #1
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    Default Best wordtanks??

    I'm looking to buy one in the next few weeks and wondered what models people had found most useful? :P

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    Daimyo ***** dombay's Avatar
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    I have the G80 which I use all the time. But I have that because I'm a Chinese student as well so I like the fact that its got both langauges in it.

    If you don't need that my mate uses the G55 for just Japanese and with no stylus pen (which supposedly allows you to write kanji straight in and you can tap the screen to jump faster) and he gets a lot of use out of it.

    The G80s stylus pen is not very good, and the G90 is the same but another mate has one of the new dictionaries with the little pad in front of the keyboard that she lent to me and it's much better. Hers was also a nice red colour which I could handle becaue im always losing mine in a pile of crap on my desk - you cannot miss it if its bright red. If it was going to buy a new dictionary i'd buy one of those.

    I find the kanjigen in the G80 to be really frustrating so I use a paper dictionary for looking up obscure kanji which I don't think is very good value for a 3man dictionary so I don't recommend it on the strength of that alone but for everything else it never fails me.
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    Billy Big Bollocks Ini's Avatar
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    just buy a DS, Nintendo Dogs is much more fun than learning japanese.
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    Quote Originally Posted by EddieHitler
    just buy a DS, Nintendo Dogs is much more fun than learning japanese.
    I agree - buy a DS, and get the dictionary for it. It'll be cheaper and then you can get games for it too.
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    I have the Canon G50. Bought it some 3 years ago, and still use it all the time. The newer electronic dictionaries with the stylus are cool (and easier for novices) because you get to just write the kanji you don't know and look it up right there. I'm old school and still use the ol' kanjigen that you have to look up kanji by radicals and pronunciation, etc. etc... I really love it, but I'm sure that's because I'm used to it

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    Quote Originally Posted by KateW
    Quote Originally Posted by EddieHitler
    just buy a DS, Nintendo Dogs is much more fun than learning japanese.
    I agree - buy a DS, and get the dictionary for it. It'll be cheaper and then you can get games for it too.
    The dictionary is shit though. It's convenient as hell to look up kanji it, but if you're doing any real reading you're going to be disappointed when one in every three words you look up isn't there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KateW
    I agree - buy a DS, and get the dictionary for it. It'll be cheaper and then you can get games for it too.
    The rakubiki jiten for DS is really cool if you're looking up kanji pronunciations and meanings. But real dictionaries are also really handy because they have tons of example sentences that help you get a grasp of the usage of the word. That's what I love the most about my G50, the example sentences are priceless!

  8. #8
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    So buy a PDA and stick a couple of dictionaries on it. Seems like a waste of money to shell out on something that big and expensive and all it does is translate a few kanji.
    Great men of action never mind on occasion being ridiculous; in a sense it is part of their job.

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    Another vote for the DS. My DS dictionary has sample sentences. I can write kanji I don't know and get the kana reading as well as the English meaning. Plus I get to play Kakitori-kun (I skipped 3 days and boy was that little birdy mad at me).
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  10. #10

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    So what's the best dictionary for DS? I'm gonna get one soon I think.

    ETA: Sorry for hi-jacking this thread to ask about something else - keep talking about wordtanks too :wink:

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    I bought Kanji Sono Mama, but really, cb is right, it's a pretty small dictionary, and it can be really frustrating to use. Also, many of it's words will only have an explanation in Chinese, not English, and since it is not meant for english speakers it often won't give you the furigana, which makes using it with a computer extremely difficult. Was good for the first couple months, but I'm going to buy a proper electronic dictionary soon.

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    you mean Japanese right?

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    So how do you enter a kanji if you don't already know its hiragana / romaji if the wordtank doesn't offer stylus input?

  14. #14
    Pandilex
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boundless
    So how do you enter a kanji if you don't already know its hiragana / romaji if the wordtank doesn't offer stylus input?
    usually you search by radical/stroke count, for example if you wanted to enter the kanji 時 you could either search for the stroke count which is 10, and search through the list, or you could search by radical, entering 日 with stroke count 4 and then looking at kanji that contain that.

    i have to say though i never, ever look up kanji in my dictionary, there is never a time when I want or need to.

  15. #15
    Daimyo ***** dombay's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandilex
    Quote Originally Posted by Boundless
    So how do you enter a kanji if you don't already know its hiragana / romaji if the wordtank doesn't offer stylus input?
    usually you search by radical/stroke count, for example if you wanted to enter the kanji 時 you could either search for the stroke count which is 10, and search through the list, or you could search by radical, entering 日 with stroke count 4 and then looking at kanji that contain that.

    i have to say though i never, ever look up kanji in my dictionary, there is never a time when I want or need to.
    If you can get your hands on the maroon coloured Kodansha Kanji dictionary it's the fastest way I know of looking up unknown kanji.

    I used to carry it around everywhere and just look up randomly encountered kanji.

    I learned a lot of them doing that.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boundless
    So how do you enter a kanji if you don't already know its hiragana / romaji if the wordtank doesn't offer stylus input?
    you can also look up by pronunciation of the radicals. similar to what pandilex said, if you're looking for 時 you can look up the kanji with the radicals of にち(日) and てら(寺). combine that with the 10 stroke count and it narrows down to basically 1 kanji.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandilex
    Quote Originally Posted by Boundless
    So how do you enter a kanji if you don't already know its hiragana / romaji if the wordtank doesn't offer stylus input?
    usually you search by radical/stroke count, for example if you wanted to enter the kanji 時 you could either search for the stroke count which is 10, and search through the list, or you could search by radical, entering 日 with stroke count 4 and then looking at kanji that contain that.

    i have to say though i never, ever look up kanji in my dictionary, there is never a time when I want or need to.
    Thanks for the reply. The lookup sounds simple enough. Now my new question is: if not for Kanji lookup, why have one of these expensive wordtanks instead of just a regular dictionary (other than size/speed/convenience...that part is obvious)? I guess I just don't understand what their main draw is - though I'm sure there is one. Are you able to look up multiple words at a time, like say a sentence where it is translated automatically?

    Also, Dombay, funny you mention the Kodansha book. I actually have that...I was just hoping this method might be faster but I guess not really.

  18. #18
    Daimyo ***** dombay's Avatar
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    I used to use my electronic dictionary for that. The paper dictionary is faster and easier which I was surprised by too.
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  19. #19
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    I too have a Canon G50 (a leaving present from my friends at home) and I use it all the time.

    I'd rate an electronic dictionary over a paper one mostly for size and convenience - mine lives in my bag and comes everywhere with me (and I mean everywhere - work, supermarket, taiko class, izakaya...).

    But the "jump" feature (which I think most come with these days?) makes cross-referencing things much much easier too - so you can look up individual kanji in words, related words, check words in example sentences and so forth. That's probably the real advantage to an electronic dictionary.

    I found the kanjigen in it took a lot of getting used to, and I do occasionally resort to a cheap paper dictionary. But most of the time I like my G50 better.

  20. #20
    Cool Cutie Fighter! Hyakuman's Avatar
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    The jump feature is the greatest dictionary tool ever made. That feature alone destroys any need for a paper dictionary in my opinion.. Just so helpful!

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