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Old 10-29-2010, 06:31 AM   #1
theusualuser
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If I convert an epub to .txt with Calibre, what does it look like?

I don't have a Jetbook, Jetbook lite or Jetbook Mini yet (waiting for the time to strike on ebay), but I was wondering what it would look like when I convert a bunch of disinfected (no more drm) .epubs to .txt to read. Do they (generally) keep all the paragraphs and indents and quotation marks so that they still look like a book, or do they just end up looking like garbage? I'm wondering because I'm seriously considering buying some sort of Jetbook (including the Jetbook Mini for the sexy form factor). Also, it's just good to know, since I've read the forums a little bit and have noticed that a lot of people either seem to like .epub, .txt or .rtf.

Thanks in advance for the help, guys!
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:24 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theusualuser View Post
I don't have a Jetbook, Jetbook lite or Jetbook Mini yet (waiting for the time to strike on ebay), but I was wondering what it would look like when I convert a bunch of disinfected (no more drm) .epubs to .txt to read. Do they (generally) keep all the paragraphs and indents and quotation marks so that they still look like a book, or do they just end up looking like garbage? I'm wondering because I'm seriously considering buying some sort of Jetbook (including the Jetbook Mini for the sexy form factor). Also, it's just good to know, since I've read the forums a little bit and have noticed that a lot of people either seem to like .epub, .txt or .rtf.

Thanks in advance for the help, guys!
Well, if you get the Jetbook or Jetbook-Lite, there is no reason to convert to .txt. They handle epubs, even DRM'd epub just fine.

An epub to text conversion will essentially replace all the special characters with ascii equivalents. Thus a medium or long dash will be replaced with "--", likewise if they use special open and close quotes, they will get replaced with the generic '"' you get when you are typing in a text editor.

I think what you really loose those is special formatting to indicate emphasis. Italics and bold text are completely gone. In many, indeed most books, this won't matter, but it will in some. If I were willing to compromise and get a Jetbook Mini, I think I would convert most of my books to .fb2 and hope that Calibre does a good job of it (It generally does a good job at conversions, but I have no experience with it doing .fb2).

--
Bill
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:31 AM   #3
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You'd only need to convert the epubs for the Mini--JB and JBL read epubs. I haven't converted anything to txt, so I can't answer you questions about the formatting. On the JBL, txt files display in sans serif type, which I dislike.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catlady View Post
You'd only need to convert the epubs for the Mini--JB and JBL read epubs. I haven't converted anything to txt, so I can't answer you questions about the formatting. On the JBL, txt files display in sans serif type, which I dislike.
Don't the epub files as well? The only way I have every been able to use something besides one of the two basic fonts with my old Jetbook was to convert to a PDF... then I could use whatever font I wanted... but had to deal with the fact that I was stuck with the the text size I had chosen once it was loaded on the book.

--
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill_mchale View Post
Don't the epub files as well? The only way I have every been able to use something besides one of the two basic fonts with my old Jetbook was to convert to a PDF... then I could use whatever font I wanted... but had to deal with the fact that I was stuck with the the text size I had chosen once it was loaded on the book.

--
Bill
The newer firmware for the JBL (0.16e or later) handle .epub files using
the Adobe Reader Mobile which appears able to use the embedded fonts of
many ebooks formatted for .epub files. From the posts I've read, it appears
that the same Adobe Reader Mobile is used for JB firmwares 0.35m and latter.
(I think that is the right firmware, but I don't follow the JB's upgrades that
much, as I don't have one.)

Luck;
Ken
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Old 10-30-2010, 04:37 AM   #6
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So, I don't know if this is super accurate or not, but I took several formats today and tried to convert them to .fb2 with calibre. I then looked at them using Calibre's built-in viewer, as well as FBreader and STDU Viewer, just to see if any discrepancies popped up.

I found that, for the most part, everything looked like it came over just fine in FB2. LIT came out just fine, as did EPUB and MOBI. TXT had some issues, of course (which have been mentioned above). There was one PDF that I converted that didn't look quite right in STDU Viewer, but in FBreader and Calibre's own viewer it looked just fine.

My question now is this: Does anyone know what kind viewer the various Jetbooks use to view .fb2? I'm assuming that the Jetbook Mini must not use FBreader, since it has no support for EPUB, but maybe the Jetbook and Jetbook Lite do?

Last edited by theusualuser; 10-30-2010 at 04:56 AM.
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Old 10-30-2010, 10:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theusualuser View Post
So, I don't know if this is super accurate or not, but I took several formats today and tried to convert them to .fb2 with calibre. I then looked at them using Calibre's built-in viewer, as well as FBreader and STDU Viewer, just to see if any discrepancies popped up.

I found that, for the most part, everything looked like it came over just fine in FB2. LIT came out just fine, as did EPUB and MOBI. TXT had some issues, of course (which have been mentioned above). There was one PDF that I converted that didn't look quite right in STDU Viewer, but in FBreader and Calibre's own viewer it looked just fine.

My question now is this: Does anyone know what kind viewer the various Jetbooks use to view .fb2? I'm assuming that the Jetbook Mini must not use FBreader, since it has no support for EPUB, but maybe the Jetbook and Jetbook Lite do?
It is possible to change the reading software with every firmware update,
so unless it is spelled out (like it is for the Adobe Reader Mobile) you would
have to open up the firmware to be sure. That said; the JBL has usually read
FB2 with an FBReader based program. I think it probably still does, even
though .epub and .pdf are now read with the Adobe program.

Luck;
Ken
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Old 10-31-2010, 10:58 AM   #8
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Ken's statement is correct w/re to the JB's 35m FW.

The 2 main things that I really like about the new JB and JBL's firmware is the ability to handle TOC's and do content searches. It also has PDF reflow support which can deal with approx 90 % of the PDF docs that >I come across.

John
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Old 12-10-2010, 01:27 PM   #9
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How do I get italicized text in an ePub to show up as _italicized_ in the output? I turned on "process with markdown" in the text output options, but italics are still being shown without leading/trailing underscores.

Thank you.
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