Just buy/download epubs and what are you giving up? There are plug-ins available(Apprentice Alf's) to allow Calibre to import/tweak(strip/ignore tags/CSS) normal Adobe & B&N epubs, so maybe just avoid the kepub format? Or am I totally not understanding your issue?
I also think Kobo got the form factor nearly perfect(my SDHC card sticks out just a tad too far and that danged white logo on my lovely black reader is good for annoying reflected light with any booklight that doesn't cover it up - they had the whole back to screw around with a gaudy logo!). I have two Nook STRs that have been laying fallow while the Kobo Touch gets all the attention of late. The shelf support through Calibre and the font tuning have been major plusses as well. The experimental built-in browser has so far kept me from bothering to root one of the Nooks...
Last edited by TechniSol; 12-11-2012 at 10:16 PM.