asking advice about 電子辞書 and 辞書

MeryllB

Senior Member
French -France
Hello

As I arrived in Japan a year and a half ago, I bought an electronic dictionnary, but the more I use it, the more disappointed I am. I understand that electronic dictionnaries, although a wonderful invention, are originally designed for Japanese users and are therefore awkward to use for foreigners who don't have a very good grasp on kanji, which is my case...
Nevertheless, I was wondering if anyone could advice me a good one, as it is still very useful to just whip out an eletronic dictionary and immediately find a word. Also, what price should expect to pay for a dictionnary that has a decent amount of words in memory? A function that allows you to find the kanji by entering the number of strokes would be nice too, as I am forever confronted with kanji I don't understand and dont' know the reading of...
Actually, I have trouble finding a good dictionnary, period, wether it is a paper version of electronic. As far as paper dictionnaries are concerned, English and French would do, I heard from my Japanese teacher that the Royal was pretty good for French, do professionals translaters have a better advice for an intermediate/business user?

thank you in advance! :)
 
  • futaro

    Senior Member
    France
    Le petit Fujy Diko des édition Kotoba est assez complet et sa taille permet de l´emmener avec soi. Je l´utilise beaucoup et en suis fort contente.
    Par contre, je n´aime pas du tout les dictionnaires électroniques que je trouve, en général, fort incomplets.
     

    Qcumber

    Senior Member
    UK English
    N'importe quel dictionnaire de poche est plus complet et plus détaillé qu'un dictionnaire électronique. En outre, c'est de l'imprimé, d'où grande qualité des caractères et aucun problème de pile ou de panne. :)
     

    MeryllB

    Senior Member
    French -France
    Thanks for the precious input.
    It is true that most electronic dictionaries are not as complete as a pocket dictionary, but like I said, they are faster. And there are times when you struggle, when your train is going to leave or your colleague is on the phone and whatnot, and in those cases fast is good.
    :)
     

    karuna

    Senior Member
    Latvian, Latvia
    I was looking for electronic dictionary a year ago and did quite a research and read many reviews but did not like any of them. At the end I settled for PAdict (http://padict.sourceforge.net/) that comes for free and can be installed on Palm device. Palm is more expensive than stand-alone device but I think it is worth it.

    PAdict has romaji and kana input. Also kanji drawing and selection by radicals is availabe but I am not yet using this feature therefore I cannot say how good it is. The entries have limited information comparing to paper dictionaries and no examples of usage but with 110K entries and the instant speed it is great.

    KDIC is another alternative and it can be used on various electronic devices. But kanji input is limited to IME only (has to be supported by the device).
     

    Anatoli

    Senior Member
    Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
    This paper dictionary is the best ever, I promise, you won't regret!
    Kodansha Kanji Learner's Dictionary

    Halpern, Jack (ed.) 2001 The Kodansha Kanji Learner’s Dictionary. Kodansha International Ltd., Tokyo.http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/4770023359/counselpsycho-20

    I don't use electronic ones but I use NJStar Word Processor (shareware) and keep EDICT dictionary (free) updated, never lets me down. It's harder to find English translations using this method, though.

    Check Mozilla Firefox plug-ins in resources sticky (Rikaichan, Moji).

    This online dictionary is great.
    http://dictionary.goo.ne.jp/
     

    Anatoli

    Senior Member
    Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
    Thanks for editing, Flam, and sorry for breaking the rules.

    The dictionary has a number of methods (including one non-traditional for searching kanji) with heaps of useful entries. MerryllB, I disagree that there are not many good Japanese dictionaries, :) I generally like most Kodansha dictionaries, their word dictionaries are good too. I wish I could find such quality dictionaries for Chinese and Arabic.
     

    _forumuser_

    Senior Member
    Italian
    My only advice is to get a dictionary with the JUMP ジャンプ function (most makers have a model with this feature). What is the Jump function? Well, when you can't read characters in the definition of a term you are looking up (a very common situation for us gaijins!! :D), the Jump function allows you to highlight the term and look it up in a different dictionary in real time. This is the only feature that really sets dictionaries apart. Oh, and of course, make sure the monolingual Japanese dictionary in the device you buy is at least the Koujien; accept nothing smaller.
     

    Aoyama

    Senior Member
    français Clodoaldien
    N'importe quel dictionnaire de poche est plus complet et plus détaillé qu'un dictionnaire électronique. En outre, c'est de l'imprimé, d'où grande qualité des caractères et aucun problème de pile ou de panne.
    Qcumber parle d'or et il est toute raison.

    Ceci dit, si l'on considere le probleme du point de vue des Francophones, quelques commentaires :
    -le Royal est le meilleur (j'y ai collabore, donc ... Tant le Francais-Japonais que -surtout - le Japonais -Francais) mais eviter le Petit Royal, prendre l'autre, plus grand (Royal) ou prendre aussi le tout petit Royal qui ne comporte pas d'exemples mais possede plus de mots. Il y a donc TROIS Royal (sans compter la candidate ...).
    -pour les dictionnaires electroniques, qui sont quand meme utiles, sans faire de publicite, il faut opter pour un modele SEIKO qui utilise le Petit Royal, incomplet comme on a dit mais meilleur que le Crown, utilisé par Casio.
    Pour les dictionnaires papier, le Standard F-J et J-F (hakusuisha) -auquel votre serviteur a aussi mis la main- a vieilli mais reste un bon outil, plus fouillé que le Royal, mais un peu daté pour les entrées récentes.
     

    youtin

    Senior Member
    Filipino, Philippines
    I can sympathize with your situation. It was the same for me too! Most of the electronic dictionaries in the market nowadays are quite advanced and have a ton of features. I also think all of them have the JUMP feature which was mentioned a few posts earlier which can greatly help you cross-find any unknown word/kanji.

    You say your electronic dictionary doesn't have a kanji-finder through stroke number feature? I've seen much older e. dictionaries and they have this feature. Are you sure you've read the manual thoroughly? Before scrapping your current electronic dictionary, I suggest you play around with it some more. You may be surprised to find all these features you never knew existed because you didn't read the manual thoroughly! :D That was how it was for my soon-to-be 3 year old dictionary. I only found out recently it had a mini country encyclopedia and multiple cross-reference abilities after playing around with it one boring day :D

    Also, for the Japanese-English dictionary, I suggest you stay away from Genius. I have it in my e. dictionary and I don't like it much -_-; I think CASIO has a better Japanese-English dictionary.
     
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