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View Poll Results: Which eReader is number one for you?
iBooks 32 34.78%
Stanza 39 42.39%
Other 21 22.83%
Voters: 92. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-08-2010, 04:13 PM   #1
Rob_E
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Stanza vs. iBooks vs. ?

I'm just curious. I was really looking forward to iBooks when I got my iPad. My iPod Touch is too old to run it, so up until now I've been using Stanza, and sometimes the Kindle app. I really want to like iBooks because when I do get a new pocketable mobile device, either an iPod Touch or an iPhone, the syncing feature seems like it's going to be great. But right now I only have one iBooks-capable device, so I was really hoping to like iBooks all on its own, just because it's so pretty.

But:
  • The pretty is not really necessary when I'm reading. I don't need to pretend I have a book in my hands.
  • The pretty gets ugly fast when I reverse the color schemes. Unless I'm reading in bright light, I prefer light text on a dark background, especially when I'm in bed and my wife is sleeping. Stanza is highly customizable in that area. iBooks does not seem to have many options and it leaves the top bar in place and in it's original color.
  • iBooks needs to be connected to iTunes or else you have to buy books from their bookstore. Stanza can get books over wifi, over any internet connection, and from a variety of on-line retailers and free sources.

Although, and I could be wrong about this, it seems like iBooks may have better dictionary integration, too. Is that true? Because that is a nice feature.

So what's the verdict? Is iBooks the loser that I think it is? Or is it mostly winning people over? Or is the sync feature worth all the other drawbacks when you have multiple devices (because I think it might be)? Have lots of other folks dumped Stanza for iBooks? Or is Stanza still the king of the eReaders? Or should I be looking at something else?
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Old 10-09-2010, 05:48 AM   #2
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You can purchase books from almost anywhere and read them on iBooks. Just as long as the final result is a deDRMed epub.
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Old 10-09-2010, 07:53 AM   #3
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I use iBooks on my iPad and Stanza on my iPod Touch. iBooks will technically run on my iPod Touch (it's a 2nd generation), but it crashes and hangs a lot. I prefer iBooks on the iPad because of the two-column display in landscape mode. I have difficulty tracking wide lines of text so I really like that feature. The two-column-in-landscape format was also recently added to the Kindle for iPad app.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:14 AM   #4
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I blew an entire evening trying to get non-DRMed ePubs into Stanza on my iPod Touch, using the instructions at the Lexcycle web site. I can drag and drop files into iBooks and the Kobo app through iTunes and read them, but not Stanza. But as long as iBooks and Kobo both work I guess I don't need Stanza.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:51 AM   #5
Jonimeesermann
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I like Kindle app myself. It's not really simple process to add your own book in to it (other than bought from Amazon), but I do it anyway since this is my favorite reading app.

Pros: Amazon's large selections of ebook
I like sephia theme
Dictionary integration is better IMO than iPad and Stanza
Doesn't butcher formatting of the ebook

Cons: Since it's not officially supported, adding my own books to Kindle is a pretty tedious process, doubt it if it will support file-sharing via iTunes

Stanza
Pros: Most customizable app out there.
A lof of source to download directly for ebooks, free and paid.
Cover flow view is nice.

Cons: Butcher ebook formatting. In some instance, it's no big deal. But I have the experience when the main body text should be centered, but Stanza insisted it to be left justified.

iBooks
Pros: Pretty (I think that's it)
Cons: Slow (maybe it's because my iTouch is getting older and can't handle iOS 4 + jailbreak)
Wide left and right margin: Really a big deal because it wasted precious screen available to an already small screen.
Can't hyphenate

Quote:
I blew an entire evening trying to get non-DRMed ePubs into Stanza on my iPod Touch, using the instructions at the Lexcycle web site. I can drag and drop files into iBooks and the Kobo app through iTunes and read them, but not Stanza. But as long as iBooks and Kobo both work I guess I don't need Stanza.
I think you're doing it wrong. Because I can drag and drop epub directly via iTunes to Stanza.
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Old 10-09-2010, 01:09 PM   #6
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I have used both iBooks and Stanza on my iTouch.

I prefer Stanza because I can use it with the Calibre server feature and access my entire Calibre library easily via wifi.

cheers
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Old 10-09-2010, 01:31 PM   #7
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On my iPad, I use the following:
-ibooks: mainly for reading magazines downloaded from Calibre
-Kobo: because its books are cheaper and it's Canadian!
-Amazon "kindle" reader: for textbooks (hard to find anywhere else)
-Stanza: for just about any free ebub, text and word ebook (French and English)
-GoodReader: for reading PDF files and PowerPoint files
-txtr: for reading Adobe Digital Editions epub files. Some were DRM epubs on my old Sony reader that I transferred to my iPad.

Each reader has its strengths and disadvantages. I find the page turning annoying on the Apple ibooks app and much prefer the "just touch a corner" approach to change a page on all the other apps. I hope Apple reads this!

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Old 10-10-2010, 10:55 AM   #8
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Would you mind sharing your tedious process for getting booked into the Kindle app on iPad? Ive been trying to figure that out since last night.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonimeesermann View Post
I like Kindle app myself. It's not really simple process to add your own book in to it (other than bought from Amazon), but I do it anyway since this is my favorite reading app.

Pros: Amazon's large selections of ebook
I like sephia theme
Dictionary integration is better IMO than iPad and Stanza
Doesn't butcher formatting of the ebook

Cons: Since it's not officially supported, adding my own books to Kindle is a pretty tedious process, doubt it if it will support file-sharing via iTunes

Stanza
Pros: Most customizable app out there.
A lof of source to download directly for ebooks, free and paid.
Cover flow view is nice.

Cons: Butcher ebook formatting. In some instance, it's no big deal. But I have the experience when the main body text should be centered, but Stanza insisted it to be left justified.

iBooks
Pros: Pretty (I think that's it)
Cons: Slow (maybe it's because my iTouch is getting older and can't handle iOS 4 + jailbreak)
Wide left and right margin: Really a big deal because it wasted precious screen available to an already small screen.
Can't hyphenate



I think you're doing it wrong. Because I can drag and drop epub directly via iTunes to Stanza.
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:17 PM   #9
Jonimeesermann
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jplumey View Post
Would you mind sharing your tedious process for getting booked into the Kindle app on iPad? Ive been trying to figure that out since last night.
Have a look at this thread
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Old 10-12-2010, 06:56 AM   #10
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i2reader 4 HD is a good ePub and FB2 software. It has the ability to use all the screen and allows two column reading mode with practically all adjustments like interline, justification, margins, font, font size, color, background, cite, poem, multiple dictionary support... It has library with collection support, you can download books from online, built-in ftp/http server apart from the iTunes option...
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Old 10-12-2010, 09:49 AM   #11
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I use the following e-reader apps on my iPad: Kindle, iBooks, Nook, Borders

But the one I use the most is the Kindle. The strength of the Kindle app is the Amazon bookstore. It seems to offer the greatest selection along with access to public domain titles. The white print on black background is great for reading in bed at night. The recently added two page view has become my preferred format. Amazon seems to be pushing the e-pub envelope. It has a large selection of low cost new e-pub offerings.

The iBooks app is visually pleasing but I'm not a fan of the bookstore.

B&N seems to be making an effort to compete with Amazon. It too is offering some e-pub only books at decent prices. The Nook app has some nice features but I find it a bit quirky to use - the two page view isn't available for all fonts. I hope they continue to work on the app because it is helpful to have good competition for Amazon.

I haven't used the Boarders app enough to evaluate it. I understand it is the same as the Kobo app.
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Old 10-14-2010, 03:59 AM   #12
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Stanza all the way for me. I've tried iBooks, Amazon, Kobo... them all.

Every single one except Stanza just wastes way too much space on looking pretty and bringing the book page experience to the iPad (in my case)

All I want is the text with minimal margins and that's what Stanza does for me.
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Old 10-14-2010, 01:24 PM   #13
Rob_E
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcramer View Post
Stanza all the way for me. I've tried iBooks, Amazon, Kobo... them all.

Every single one except Stanza just wastes way too much space on looking pretty and bringing the book page experience to the iPad (in my case)

All I want is the text with minimal margins and that's what Stanza does for me.
This is how I'm leaning. I love Stanza on my iPod Touch, but I thought I might not mind the wasted screen space on the iPad since it has screen space to spare. And really the wasted screen space isn't a huge issue, but the lack of other options is, especially the fact that the menu bar can't be hidden and remains the same color even when you go to white-on-black mode.

If I had a 2nd iBooks-compatible device then the page syncing feature would be a very hard one to overlook, but for now I may move back to my old friend, Stanza.

The two column view is something else I hadn't considered. Since I'm coming at this from the point-of-view of someone who's ebook reading has been on an iPod Touch, I never considered reading in landscape view. I can see where that would be nice, and hopefully Stanza will add that feature as well.
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Old 10-14-2010, 08:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NNolan View Post
I blew an entire evening trying to get non-DRMed ePubs into Stanza on my iPod Touch, using the instructions at the Lexcycle web site. I can drag and drop files into iBooks and the Kobo app through iTunes and read them, but not Stanza. But as long as iBooks and Kobo both work I guess I don't need Stanza.
I just tried with a non-DRM ePub and it said 'unknown file format, encrypted with proprietary DRM', which is inaccurate. However, another ePub did work, and a PDF I tried also worked.

I think it may be the particulars of the ePub in question (ironically entitled 'ePub Best Practices Guide'), it has some SVG graphics embedded. Maybe Stanza doesn't support that correctly? Kobo ignores the graphics, which is bad (like everything else about KoboReader), but iBooks and Bluefire Reader do okay.

BTW why isn't iBooks among the apps that offer to open an ePub I download from the web? It might fail to open (DRM...) but it should be a choice.
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Old 10-16-2010, 11:24 AM   #15
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I would use Stanza full time for non-DRM'ed content if it could read from the same database as iBooks. I like being able to have my ebook collection transferred from Calibre into iTunes and then just syncing automatically from there rather than either manually adding files for Stanza or using the Calibre server.
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