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Old 12-14-2010, 10:40 AM   #1
Eduardito
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From Caliber to NookColor: Newbie Impressions, Doubts, Questions

Hello, everyone. First time user here. I wanted to introduce myself to the community and give my impressions on the NookColor device as an absolute newbie. I just got my NookColor yesterday and I have been playing around with it.

Size and Form Factor
So far I had only been reading books on my computer. The device itself has been a little bit of an adaptation for me. The screen is obviously smaller than my computer screen and it's surprisingly heavy. I've never had an handheld e-reader before except for the iPod so that's the only thing I can compare it to. I found the screen super bright, this obviously can be adjusted. The device is dense and rubbery which felt good on my hands as opposed to the super sleek iPod and lighter e-readers. I still haven't read for more than a couple of hours so I don't know how this will factor into reading fatigue. When I got it I felt I needed to get a cover for it right away, it feels like it needs one. It doesn't come with one nor headphones, which should tell you something about it's media capabilities but more on that later. The home screen button is a nice feature and it clicks well. It has mono speakers which are not that loud in certain situations. I like the little door for the SD Card and expandable memory is a refreshing feature. I'm still trying to figure out what the hook is for. The USB cable with the light on it that indicates battery power is really nice. The only three side buttons on it are good enough. I would've like to get buttons for page flipping (the why i'll explain later). I'm still not sure about how I feel about the 3.5mm jack. I'm used to having it on the bottom (iPod, PSP) and not on top. It feels more natural on the bottom if i'm reading and listening to something because the cable doesn't stick out on top and it flows better towards your body.

The screen
The screen is not as responsive as the iPad or iPod and it goes bananas if I touch it with moist fingers. I read a lot at the beach and it gets really hot and when I touch it with moist fingers it starts "pressing" itself. Which makes me scared to go to the store since the device downloaded one of the free children book by itself without me pressing it. I called B&N about it and the explanation is that the screen is super sensitive, the person didn't know if it worked by heat or pressure. He recommended a screen protector. I asked if there where gloves and he laughed when I told him I was serious he told me B&N didn't sell any (if they start I want royalties!) but recommended latex gloves. Latex gloves would make me look creepy in public. Like I said it's super bright and the size is a little bit smaller than what I'm used to but I think I can adapt. I am used to reading on LCD and never had an eInk device so I can't compare. I mostly read at night so glare is not a problem. Adjusting brightness will help eye strain. The only deal breaker here would be if I can't fix the screen responsiveness issue. This is why I mentioned that I would've liked tactile buttons to turn pages because as soon as I touch the device it starts turning by itself and freezes up. I end up having to turn it off and wiping about every 2 to 3 minutes depending on what I'm doing on it. If I'm browsing my files on it, it goes crazy pretty fast. Which brings me to the OS.

The OS and "Apps"
It features three screens like android devices. The Library handles well. The Huge huge huge issue here that a lot of people are complaining about is that you can't put sideloaded books on your home screen. I called about it and the guy said they are getting a lot of complaints and might fix it with an update, but I feel he said that just to appease me. This could be the other deal breaker. Having an empty home screen sucks. The wallpaper was changed instantly and it's super easy to do, it shows the same wallpaper on all three screens, It would be nicer to have a big wallpaper that continues on the next screen, I don't know if this can be done. I can't get public domain books in Puerto Rico from the B&N Store (we don't have brick and mortar B&Ns here), the devices identifies its location by the IP and credit card address. When I suggested I would use an US credit card, and mask my IP to show US location, he said I could. Again I think he just said it to appease me. Getting books is not a problem at all since I can get ePubs anywhere. The shelves are a good feature and I've spent a couple of hours organizing it. It's the only thing that makes me tolerate not being able to put my books on my home screen. One problem is that I can't get the Caliber to send books in a way that they can be read because it creates a folder with the author's name and the cover for the book. I had to take them out of the folders and drop them into the main folder, one by one. If there's a solution to this please help out. The Library Folder doesn't recognize folders as far as I know, the others do. I have to drop books on the "big" Library folder. Getting covers for the ones that haven't been recognize which were very few has been difficult. I'll keep tinkering with it using the methods suggested here. Organizing by most recent or by author or by title is extremely nice. Also helps with the fact I can't put the books on the home screen. Also there are no covers for the PDFs which should be fixed. It should be streamlined, the process to get to a music file includes Touch the bottom button, touch library, touch My Files, touch the My Files Folder, Touch Music, then touch the Music File. There's a music player on the extras thought. The music files don't show on the player until you access them thru the folder first and they load onto the music player. So far the music files that are within folders show as null -null on the music player instead of showing the artist and song name. I haven't been able to make playlists or get it recognize playlists. The extras include Chess, Contacts, Crossword, Gallery, LendMe, Music, Pandora, Sudoku. If I could get this extras screen as my third screen or move these to my home screen that would be better, if there's a way to do that I would like to know. The browser is meh and connecting it to WiFi made the network go bonkers and all the computers disconnected. I have to figure that out still.

How Does it Read and Files compatibility:
I wasn't enjoying it until I figured I could adjust the font size, type and contrast. I prefer to use the default publisher mode. Also I saw a potential for comic book reading which thanks to ComicRack I was able to instantly convert the CDisplay files to PDFs. Now reading PDFs is handled modestly by the device because of the nature of PDFs, in which they are set at a standard font size, you would have zoom in, zoom out and flip it around to read it comfortably. This could prove to be a challenge and uncomfortable if you read a lot of PDFs. I loaded on the comics and they look pretty good. Of course the font in comics can be smaller than what is appropriate for the NookColor screen size. So you find yourself zooming in all the time or turning it sideways which would help. The problem with zooming is that the image "bumps around" if you don't have a steady hand, which could harm the reading experience. One thing I did not like about how PDFs handle is that you have to swipe them up instead of touching the sides like on book files. I loaded on a Magazine in PDF format, what they sell as "True PDFs" and because of the sheer size of it it was laggy, I wouldn't mind this as much if magazines didn't come with a lot of ads that you have to swipe thru and wait to get to the articles. 30 MBs was the PDF Magazine size. The Comic was better handled and it was 13 MBs. I would to convert some PDF files to ePub, I eventually will figure it out. Also I get a lot of work stuff in HTML Helper files, the only solution I have found to put them into the nook is "printing" them onto a PDF. The PDF will have the file on the bottom if you don't make sure it "prints" without any info. MP3s are handled well, and they display the art. MP4s and M4Vs are played well as described in other threads here. But the sound oddly enough comes out of only one of my speaker but both sides on my headphones. I don't know if this is because the output is Mono. Files I tested so far doc docx txt are all a go. rtf, html help file, avi, are not.

So the issues that have to get solved are the screen sensitivity, dropping books onto the home screen and recognizing library folders and covers.

Some weird stuff:
Just by playing with it regularly and loading and unloading files with Caliber and manually, it started giving the notification "Damaged SD card" but I don't ahve an SD card in it. Also the folders that Caliber created on the Library Folder dissapeared. Also when I try to open the free books from B&N that are on my home screen it opens another book. I might have to clean the whole device up. Such a shame after I organized all my shelves.

Update: Hard resetting the deviced fixed the SD card error and the books comming up as other books problem. Also I wanted to add that the WiFi reception on it is pretty lousy, obviously laptops get the best reception but the iPod got one bar in my room where the nook gets none. I also ventured into the store and realized magazines are more expensive than printed versions, at least in the case of GQ, I paid $16 for 16 issues and in the store is $1.99 an issue. I guess I'll keep chopping trees down.

Last edited by Eduardito; 12-14-2010 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 12-14-2010, 01:52 PM   #2
slayda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eduardito View Post
...

The screen
The screen is not as responsive as the iPad or iPod and it goes bananas if I touch it with moist fingers. I read a lot at the beach and it gets really hot and when I touch it with moist fingers it starts "pressing" itself. Which makes me scared to go to the store since the device downloaded one of the free children book by itself without me pressing it. I called B&N about it and the explanation is that the screen is super sensitive, the person didn't know if it worked by heat or pressure. He recommended a screen protector. I asked if there where gloves and he laughed when I told him I was serious he told me B&N didn't sell any (if they start I want royalties!) but recommended latex gloves. Latex gloves would make me look creepy in public. Like I said it's super bright and the size is a little bit smaller than what I'm used to but I think I can adapt. I am used to reading on LCD and never had an eInk device so I can't compare. I mostly read at night so glare is not a problem. Adjusting brightness will help eye strain. The only deal breaker here would be if I can't fix the screen responsiveness issue. This is why I mentioned that I would've liked tactile buttons to turn pages because as soon as I touch the device it starts turning by itself and freezes up. I end up having to turn it off and wiping about every 2 to 3 minutes depending on what I'm doing on it. If I'm browsing my files on it, it goes crazy pretty fast. Which brings me to the OS.

...
You might try these when at the beach. I have some & they work better than wet fingers but not as well as dry fingers.

BTW welcome to the forum.
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Old 12-14-2010, 02:22 PM   #3
Eduardito
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Device: NookColor
Thank you for your input, that helped me figure out that the screen is capacitive hence the sweat will conduct and yes it's a considerable amount of sweat. Not drenching but definitely streaks of liquid and small drop. So much so that sometimes i will to scroll a PDF and it increases or decreases in size registering 2 touches. Meaning that there's enough sweat to conduct somewhere else on the device. Anyhow I will try the stylus and the cover.

Also I tested the NoookColor with different speakers and I got sound thru both.

Last edited by Eduardito; 12-14-2010 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 12-15-2010, 05:32 PM   #4
Eduardito
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Device: NookColor
A little bump to say that I feel now that I actually am more productive on the NookColor that with regular books. I haven't read more than maybe less than 10 paper books in my whole entire life, all my paper reading have been with text books, manuals, and things related to my profession. But I have done a lot of reading off computers, I use one every day for at least 10 hours. I think that's why the NookCoor was a better transition for me. Someone once told me that we read off paper 8 times faster, but this is not the case with me. Specially with heavy reference tomes that I would have to prop up or set down on a table to read, the nookcolor is just easier to handle. The mobility is a big plus I can take it anywhere, I jokingly call it my Toilet Tablet.

I'm still struggling with the Covers, the Caliber and the NookColor. After spending 3 hours getting all the right covers on my Caliber when transffered to the Nook the books had the old covers or no covers at all.

Also Caliber is retrieving the wrong covers for some books, specially books in Spanish, it tends to retrieve their english version covers.

Last edited by Eduardito; 12-16-2010 at 01:06 AM.
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