Green German ink & Japanese Gel ink refills are on their way!

I’ve had so many requests for new colors of ink! It was hard to narrow it down but we’ve got Green German ink refills coming for the Livescribe Pulse/Echo/Sky (57mm), as well as Black Japanese Gel Ink refills for the Pulse/Echo/Sky (57mm).

The Gel ink refills write very nice! but have so little ink in them. I personally would only use them to annotate notes that I’ve already taken or for drawing diagrams. Of course, you are welcome to use them however you see fit! Just be forewarned that you won’t get very many pages with them! The samples let me transcribe a good bit of the Constitution of the United States of America but not much more. I’ll let you know how the production model works out.

Nothing new for the Livescribe 3 yet.  What would you like to see? medium tips? new colors? gel ink (with the caveat that there probably isn’t enough ink in them to be practical for everyday writing). Let us know in the comments!

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Warranty replacement on its way!

So Livescribe is sending me a new Livescribe 3 to replace my Sky with the dead OLED display. No charge, and they’re using FedEx. No fuss, no muss.

I wonder now, if I should have taken the other option, a new Echo. I could have taken the display from the new pen and swapped it into my Sky. Well, I’ve made my decision so no looking back! Lets put the new Livescribe 3 through its paces and see how it works with my (new to me) iPhone 6+. The big display should help a lot!

Livescribe OLED displays have 2 year warranty!

OK, good news for me! and maybe new news for you: Livescribe provides a 2 year warranty on OLED displays of recently purchased Livescribe Echo (and the discontinued Sky) pens.  I received an email from Livescribe telling me that my Sky wifi pen was nearing the end of its first year (on Dec 12th), and that the warranty for the pen was 1 yr, except for the OLED display, which is warrantied for 2 years.

Waiting to see what the warranty will provide and if I will have to pay anything for the service. I’d sure like to keep using the Sky wifi, even though I did just upgrade to the iPhone 6 Plus, just in case I switch over to using my Livescribe 3 for everyday notes.

Be sure to come back tomorrow!

Livescribe OLED woes, continued…

My newest Sky wifi pen has been with me for less than a week, and the OLED display is now barely visible. This was a used pen purchased on eBay so I can’t say for certain how long the display has been used.

I have to say, this OLED display issue is giving me fits! I love how the Sky is integrated with Evernote. The wifi sync is nice but not totally needed since I dock my pen every night to charge so I sync using Livescribe Helper.

There is not a lot of information about repair of these displays on the internet. It seems that the OLED display is a proprietary 96 x 16 pixels instead of the more commonly found 96 x 18 displays. The Sky display has a ribbon connector with 10 pads, and of course, this is not very common either. It makes swapping in a new display problematic at best. Someone has reported that the chip that drives the display is labelled, “SSD1305” so it might be possible to figure how to drive a display with 10 pins: most have 14 or more pin outs.

There is some information about swapping your dead display with a working display – but it requires finding a working display. eBay does have some Echo and Sky pens for sale for parts but you aren’t guaranteed getting a live display, let alone a live display with a lot of life left in it!

A word of caution: I purchased a pen on eBay that was branded Livescribe Echo on the front, and Sky on the back. It didn’t work with Livescribe Helper (which is meant for the Sky) but it did seem to talk to the activation server at Livescribe so its probably an Echo in a mismatched case. Another pen I bought on eBay was labelled, “Echo wifi” and that didn’t make any sense at all so I returned it.

I do have a brand new Echo purchased directly from Livescribe. I’m tempted to swap its display for my Sky. As I’ve mentioned before, my soldering skills are weak at best, and the contacts on the display ribbon are tiny!

I’m going to try to live with this display-less Sky for now. At least it was working long enough for me to write down it’s mac address, and verify that it could join the wifi network at work. Not sure how I’ll select networks in the future since the display is so dim… more aggravation to come.

Happy Day of the Dead.

Livescribe Sky OLED woes…

Although I’ve got the Livescribe Pulse, Echo, Sky, and Livescribe 3 pens, I find that I use my Sky the most. I guess I’m used to having everything sync up with Evernote.  This lets me access my notes where ever I am.

The Livescribe 3 would be a great solution for me since I carry my iPhone with me but I’m not in love with the way that pen feels in my hand. Its a lot like the original Pulse, in that its really just a round cylinder… sigh, you’d think that Livescribe would have learned their lesson about ergonomics. The 3 might figure more prominently if I make the plunge and upgrade to the 6S+ (the one with the huge screen 😉 as my older eyes are just not so comfortable with reading small screens anymore.

Why am I considering the change? Livescribe no longer carries the Sky in their lineup. I’m not sure why they dropped it; I love that it syncs whenever I’ve got wifi. This makes sure that my daily notes are always backed up in the cloud.

The OLED display on my second Sky finally died about a month ago. This happened to my first Sky, thus the second. Evidently, these displays have a limited lifetime, and I’ve used up two screens. Other Sky owners have reported their aggravation at not being able to read their OLED displays.

My biggest problem is that I’m used to glancing at the OLED display to be sure that the Sky is turned on. Can’t do that if the display is dead. So now, I usually tap the menu icon to hear “main menu,” and I know that the pen is powered up. “Usually” is the operative word here. My notes have more and more gaps because I assume that the Sky is on when in fact, it has powered itself down.

I can’t live with this situation! I purchased a used Sky on eBay, and am setting it up while I write this entry. Not going to be able to keep doing this though. The “New in Box” Sky pens are getting pretty pricey on eBay, and the used ones are a crapshoot – they already have some of their OLED life used up, and you never really know if they are fully operational until you get them. I’ve been lucky so far, 3 for 3.

I found a DIY page for replacing the OLED display on the Sky. Evidently this is an issue for the Echo as well. The only problem is that these displays were custom manufactured for Livescribe so you need to find a Sky or Echo with a working display, remove the dead display from your pen, and solder in the replacement display from the other pen. There are 10 solder pads on a ribbon which may be beyond my limited soldering capabilities.

Luckily, I know someone with better soldering skills than mine! I may have to find a couple of Sky or Echo pens being sold for parts – with working displays. They do show up on eBay but most of them have dead displays so they are getting harder to find. Might be worth taking a multimeter to the innards of a Sky to see if there is enough voltage to run an LED that can serve as a power indicator…

We’re always ready to take your orders and suggestions!

We’ve got plenty of refills packaged and ready to ship immediately! Our smooth writing German ink makes all the difference to your writing experience. So much nicer than the Livescribe-branded refills.

We’ve gotten a couple requests for green or purple refills. Are there any other colors that strike your fancy? Send us your suggestions! it’s the only way we have to gauge demand for new items. Speaking of new items, we’ve got the Poquito Stylus available for $9.99, and we’ll ship a pack of our Generic Refills with them (they take the 67 mm long refills). This makes them an incredible deal, and you are guaranteed to like the way they write since you’ll also get a set of our Generic Refills with them. They are perfect for jotting down notes, signing credit card slips, and of course, for any iPhone or iPad screen.  They’ll also make a great little stocking stuffer, the Holidays are just around the corner…

Need quick delivery? please order from Amazon for the next week or so…

Generic Refills is on vacation, and can fill orders but more slowly than normal. We’re in the Seattle area for a few more days, and have access to the Post Office etc. so you can expect more or less normal service for a few more days. Headed across to south eastern Washington State for a reunion for three days so you might get your package post marked, “Walla Walla, WA” if you’re lucky!

After the reunion, we’ll drive back to Seattle for a day, then we get on the Empire Builder (Amtrak #8) to head to Chicago. Definitely limited access to the Post Office during this time! One day in Chicago (any suggestions for essential sights to take in?), and then we’re on the Capitol Limited to Washington DC with a connection to the Silver Star to ride back to Cary, North Carolina, and a short drive back to Carrboro. A cross-country train adventure!

Haven’t had much time the last few months to keep the blog up to date but you’ll hear from us again soon!