[M5Paper] An EPub Reader using ESP-IDF

  • Hello all,

    I'm new to this community. I expect to acquire a M5Paper soon (once available somewhere in Canada). In the last 6 months, I have developed an EPub Reader for the InkPlate devices that are based on the ESP32. My intent is to port it to the M5Paper. I require some advice on 1) is it something that would be useful for the community and 2) Is there any issue I need to be aware of in porting the application: the availability of the screen driver is key to allow for the port to be successfull.


    You can find the EPub reader source code here:


  • Yes this is required as I have been trying to make one for my document i write for M5Stack
    Please make this working!

  • Hey Turgu.

    Also new here, just joining to reply.

    Ran first into your ESP32 epub reader repo and then eventually into this via lots of random google wandles. I have an m5paper and have been looking into how I'd get the epaper working with esp-idf. My specific use case is a bit more broad than an epub reader but I'd love to help you with you with it (at the very least with testing / debugging time, unsure about anything else just now).

    This morning after many weeks of search I randomly came across: https://github.com/lovyan03/LovyanGFX

    To be honest I'd say based on my reading into m5paper that the battery life will be the main issue. The controller used for the epaper is relatively well understood, together with it's limitations. But their seems to be some issues with the battery / power management. Unsure if your specific use case is untethered or if you're still working on the (admirable) goal of creating an open epub reader with extended input device support / accessability.

    Hope this is helpful to you, really looking forward to any news from your end, I'm not sure I can be counted as part of the m5stack community but at the very least I'm certainly a potential future user ;)

  • @lypanov I have been speaking to him on github. He hasn't been able to get ahold of an M5Paper so hasn't been able to start work on porting it yet.

  • I have written a reader for simpler formats (plain text with a bit of markdowny style syntax), I didn't find the TFT_eSPI interface to be limiting, except in not being able to handle multiple TTF fonts, which I was able to solve.

    I think you'd need to have a specific problem that the provided library didn't handle to take the hassle of trying to get something else working.

  • @lypanov the main power hog on the M5Paper is the secondary MCU in control of the e-ink display. The IT8951, while a great chip that simplifies e-ink management, has a massive issue that has been pointed out multiple times - it's idle power use is around 100-130mA, which is not really acceptable for a low power solution. You could counter this by manually disabling power to it after a certain period of inactivity, but that's extra hassle.

    If you want a slightly better power managed board with similar specs, I'd recommend looking into the LilyGO TTGO T5 4.7 - it uses pretty much the same display module, same ESP32, same RAM and flash, but no wonky e-ink controller (instead it's handled by the ESP32), and much better power management.

  • I hear a whisper that M5Stack have been listening and are working on a new version.

  • Hello, just to let you know that I’ve just ordered the m5paper v1.1. Will look at how I can easily port my epub reader to it.

  • @turgu
    Hi turgu!

    I'm looking forward to hearing about the new version of your EPub Reader for M5paper1.1. I specifically registered here to find out how things are going with the port and are you planning to add a new version to M5burner?

    Good luck and all the best!