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Old 01-05-2011, 11:05 AM   #1
Catlady
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Google Bookstore?

Has anyone purchased from Google Bookstore? I did on the first day, got a pdf file that I couldn't read on the JBL and a horrendously OCR'd epub file; though Google was great about providing a refund, still, this soured me on buying Google Books.

But now Google has a good price on a book I want--it's $10 there, as opposed to $15 at BN and Sony (not available at Kobo, so no chance of using a coupon!). It's also $10 at Amazon. I'm undecided which is the better option--to buy at Google, where I've been disappointed already (and maybe asking for a second refund won't be so easy), or to buy at Amazon and convert. Can I assume that a conversion would be perfect?

Google doesn't seem to provide a downloadable sample, so that makes me leery as well.

So ... opinions? Google and hope it works, or Amazon and convert? Thanks!
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:50 PM   #2
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I've been generally successful with my disinfecting efforts, including with Amazon's
regular DRM. I suspect that they don't put the really nasty infection (Topaz) onto
mass marketed publications. (Entertainment, Novels). That said, there is no guarantee
that the DRM can be removed.

I feel the most practical approach is to look for the best implementation of a good
format that is either one supported well on the JBL or is easily converted using Calibre,
into .epub or .pdb.

Luck;
Ken
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:06 PM   #3
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If an ePub is also available from B&N and Sony, then it almost certainly has been provided by the publisher to all three ebook sites. So the advantage of the Google store is that they are matching Amazon prices. I have bought a couple of ePubs from Google and the DRM is standard Adobe (e.g. you get a .acsm file for import to ADE). The ebooks I bought appeared to be standard ePubs from the publisher.

Amazon and convert also works well, just avoid the TOPAZ ebooks (they don't list the filesize on their Kindle Store web page).
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wallcraft View Post
If an ePub is also available from B&N and Sony, then
Amazon and convert also works well, just avoid the TOPAZ ebooks (they don't list the filesize on their Kindle Store web page).
I have never deDRMed any book, but after a few minutes of googling i managed to find a method (haven't test it myself) to deDRM topaz [via python scripts] (sorry no links but it can be easily found)

Also the guy who created topaz said on his blog that it was compromised and that he didn't expect it to hold more than a few weeks:
http://beesbuzz.biz/blog/e/2010/01/0...evelopment.php
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:32 PM   #5
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Thanks for the advice. I ended up buying the book in question from Google, and it seems all right. Google let me download both the pdf and the epub; I'm using the epub.

I must say, I don't understand pdf. I have borrowed some library books that are pdfs, and I was able to enlarge the font and read them without having reflow on. But on this book from Google, for example, I can only enlarge the font by turning on reflow and enlarging the entire page.

Re converting from Amazon's format--my concern wasn't so much the ability to convert the file, even a Topaz file (I've got the links and the tools), but how faithfully the book would be recreated in going to epub format. With one exception, where the book was available exclusively at Amazon, I've converted only free books. Here, when I was spending money, I wanted to be sure to get a good result.
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:48 PM   #6
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Maybe it is my pedestrian tastes, but I have not encountered but a couple of books
using the Topaz format&DRM (for it is really a little of both). What I have seen of such
Topaz formatted books share the worst features of the PDF format in terms of using it
for ebooks. If you have the tools package, notice that part of them have to function
much like OCR software to handle graphic text and image data. Not a promising sign that
the process will have a very readable result.

PDF in general is not a format for handheld/pocketable screens, except if you are making
your own document. The JBL does better than others (thanks primarily to its
implementation of the Adobe Reader Mobile), but most books or other documents
available in PDF format are made for a larger venue and even PDF Reflow is often not
enough to overcome the inherent incompatability.

Luck;
Ken
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Old 01-09-2011, 12:24 PM   #7
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Recently Amazon had a special limited-time deal offering for only $3 a book that was otherwise selling for $35 (!) exclusively for Kindle, in Topaz format. I figured it was worth a shot. I haven't read it yet, but on a cursory examination it looks like it came out OK. Other than that I've only encountered Topaz on some freebies.
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