Originally Posted by jswinden
Sony has more brick and mortar stores in various states, so if they have one in yours then you will pay sales tax on every book purchased through them. Amazon only charges sales tax in a few states (3?) and for some publishers if they have a physical presence in your state. I suspect B&N and Borders are more like Sony than Amazon since they have stores in more states. Amazon definitely has more books than he others.
But all that aside, the Sony Reader Library is a bit clunky, but with the newer readers it does a good job of loading books onto them. I've never used calibre. You can also drag and drop books directly from your computer to the Sony readers. The Sony Reader Store is so-so and a bit kluge in design.
With Calibre, all I had to do in Set-up was say I had a Sony reader. From that, Calibre knew that anything I converted should default to ePub. It also knows as soon as I plug in the USB that the 650 is connected and updates its library list letting me know which books are both on my computer and the 650 (and if I have duplicates on the device). It isn't really drag and drop, instead you right click on a book in your calibre book list and select 'send to device.' It can do 1 book or a batch.
It doesn't seem to send periodicals to the right folder and it replaced my per-existing cover pics with some ugly ones from some data service when I added some of my old e-books to the software. Otherwise, I have no serious complaints.
Thanks everyone for the insight. I think I'll just stick with calibre and try googling books for a best price like tennoel suggested or going directly to the publisher in some cases.