The Kindle Keyboard 3, or Kindle 3, is absolutely one of my favorite Kindles.
It features a full keyboard (SYM key gives you punctation), sports a Linux kernel (you can actually run Debian on them), easily jailbreakable, weighted properly, and has physical page buttons.
They are one of the last easily serviceable e-readers from Amazon.
They are very cheap on eBay and are still able to sync with your Amazon account easily, some of the special models even have 3G. Having 3G is especially handy since you now have a remote terminal with Debian. SSH into any server on the fly! The one fatal flaw the device has is the screen. While it isn’t too expensive to replace ($25), you have to dissassemble the entire device. Thankfully, there are only two screws and one ribbon cable, plus prying off the snap-on plastic back. iFixit has you covered. My only tips are, just undo the orange ribbon cable (see photo).
And on step 7/8 take out the motherboard and plate as a whole.
I have two sitting waiting for new screens. I plan to give them as Christmas gifts since I believe they are much more utilitarian than the newer ones. In the future, I plan to make a reading light attachment, but thats all in the future.
Now, I bought two new screens from an eBay seller (unnamed for privacy). After assembling, I noticed some very frustrating ghosting on the screen:
From now on, I’ll buy my screens from PowerBookMedic, which has a great selection of Kindle parts. You could basically build one out of their inventory. I ended up buying two new faceplates and backs for $8.00. I will be going to the post office to ship the faulty screens back and hopefully buying a quality set of screens. I will update as soon as I get them installed.