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Old 10-17-2010, 10:55 AM   #1
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PDF to MOBI conversion?

What is the best way?

This is my method but there are problems with images that have linked text (like graphs that have text axis labels)

Acrobat 9 extended export to HTML with CSS 1.0, Image to 150 DPI
Calibre import, convert to mobi

As you can see some of the graphs are a little messed up.
Data in the appendices are a little messed up, but still readable, but even in the PDF they are barely readable.

Test document (CDC report):
www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/wk/mm5326.pdf

Also, does anyone know a way to force reflow in the reader, and then like - print to PDF? May be a workaround for a lack of reflow on kindle =X
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File Type: mobi mm5326 - Unknown.mobi (616.6 KB, 69 views)
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Old 10-17-2010, 12:53 PM   #2
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I also have tried with Calibre with mixed results.

There is a thread here about a non-free software.
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:40 PM   #3
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Most of that non-free software is trash from what I have experienced. Need examples. PDF2HTML is freeware and works decent in complex mode, but when you do this, it generates a full page background image, which will not convert to .mobi format. However pages are preserved 1:1 (but text will not reflow) When you use simple mode formatting is garbled.

There are a few online converter programs but they limit the filesize to 2mb or something stupid, or want you to pay. Most do a decent job, but online uploads of large PDFs is not really acceptable.

Acrobat 9 extended is the best I have seen so far (converting to .doc, .rtf, .html all yields similar documents)

Another option is using Open Office with the free PDF import plugin. You can then EXPORT with various results. It seems to want to export as a slideshow, but people have said they can get it to reflow text and such.

I have had no such luck working with it.

Of course all of this could be fixed, provided amazon updated their PDF reader gui/software.
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Old 10-17-2010, 03:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curstpriest View Post
Most of that non-free software is trash from what I have experienced. Need examples. PDF2HTML is freeware and works decent in complex mode, but when you do this, it generates a full page background image, which will not convert to .mobi format. However pages are preserved 1:1 (but text will not reflow) When you use simple mode formatting is garbled.

There are a few online converter programs but they limit the filesize to 2mb or something stupid, or want you to pay. Most do a decent job, but online uploads of large PDFs is not really acceptable.

Acrobat 9 extended is the best I have seen so far (converting to .doc, .rtf, .html all yields similar documents)

Another option is using Open Office with the free PDF import plugin. You can then EXPORT with various results. It seems to want to export as a slideshow, but people have said they can get it to reflow text and such.

I have had no such luck working with it.

Of course all of this could be fixed, provided amazon updated their PDF reader gui/software.
Blame Adobe not Amazon or any conversion program. Adobe created the POS they call PDF. It was designed for printing documents, NOT for viewing them on electronic devices. In the nearly two decades since Adobe introduced PDF they have modified it quite a bit, but it will never work correctly as a reflowable ebook format. The best thing is to not even use PDFs, but that is only going to happen when publishers stop using them.
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Old 10-17-2010, 04:55 PM   #5
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I've had no problems with Calibre converting PDFs.
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:19 PM   #6
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K, take the CDC pdf I posted you and convert it with calibre, and look @ the results, for me they are horrid =X
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:35 PM   #7
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Mobipocket creator does the best job of converting PDF to MObi for kindle in my experience. It's a free download. Only drawback is that it doesn't seem to do batch conversion like calibre.
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:39 PM   #8
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I find the best way to deal with PDF is to not deal with PDF.
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:43 PM   #9
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I also use MobiReader for my conversions. The best part is you can just drag and drop your PDF right onto the reader screen and it converts fast.
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Old 10-17-2010, 05:44 PM   #10
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I tried mobipocket creator, it did not bother to convert graphs or images, and did not convert tables, Much text was not handled properly, but just crammed onto newlines. Here is the result.

I think even free acrobat has export to HTML/RTF, which could be taken in by calibre, does it not?

This would give you guys better conversion.
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File Type: prc mm5326.prc (135.2 KB, 78 views)
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Old 10-17-2010, 06:45 PM   #11
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Looking at Google's system for VIEW PDF as HTML, it does a pretty damn good job, however it does not show images? WTF? It says it omits them.

It also appears to have 2 versions, the version in google docs, that shows each page of the pdf in the HTML file (page1/2/3/4) in grey horizontal line, and then the google.com search when you find a PDF, that lets you view a PDF as html.

Does anyone know if google has PDF to HTML document conversion with inline image support? This would probably provide the best conversion from what I have seen. Their HTML formatting preserves tables and formatting with 100% accuracy.
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Old 10-17-2010, 07:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jswinden View Post
Blame Adobe not Amazon or any conversion program. Adobe created the POS they call PDF. It was designed for printing documents, NOT for viewing them on electronic devices. In the nearly two decades since Adobe introduced PDF they have modified it quite a bit, but it will never work correctly as a reflowable ebook format. The best thing is to not even use PDFs, but that is only going to happen when publishers stop using them.
Why would you blame Adobe when clueless publishers/manufacturers use PDF (which was designed for printing documents) as an ebook viewing format?
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:56 AM   #13
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I'm not an adept on the topic, but could say that the outcome
depends on the input file. You could call it "end of line problem".
Aside that pdf is not really mentioned for viewing files, but to
print them. My experience in pdf -> epub conversion gives mixed
results. Whatever I did, whatever intermediary step I inserted,
came the same, since the author put strict end of line and format-
ted it to his/her liking. Nothing could be done except manually
changing every single line. Btw, above mentioned command line
script is actually part of Calibre.
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