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Old 04-01-2012, 01:32 AM   #1
Nalapombu
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Is Anything Lost When Going Through Conversion??

Hey all,

I have a Kindle Fire and I convert everything to MOBI format. I have converted EBook and PDF to MOBI and most of the time everything looks fine.

I am curious about something though. Lets say I have several EBOOK formats, or whatever it is that is standard for the Apple IPAD. I convert them to MOBI to use on my Kindle Fire. Now lets say I get an IPAD sometime this year and I want to put those books I have onto my new IPAD so I go into those MOBI files that were converted from EBOOK originally. If I convert them BACK to EBOOK from MOBI, will they be just like they were in the beginning before I initially converted them to MOBI or will they be missing anything? Will I be able to use them just as well after converting them back to EBOOK on an IPad as I would be able to use them had I loaded them on the IPAD in their original EBook format?

Did you follow all that? Gosh I hope so, I'm not sure I even followed it.

Thanks for the help.

Nalajr
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Old 04-01-2012, 01:41 AM   #2
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Conversion is always potentially a lossy process. As a general rule text tends to survive multiple conversions intact, but formatting information is more likely to get lost and/or altered.

This is one reason why it is recommended that one does not delete your original format from Calibre even if you do not need it at the moment.
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Old 04-01-2012, 02:42 AM   #3
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Occasionally I have convered FROM ePub TO Mobi and then back TO ePub. I noticed that even if the original ePub had separate internal files for each chapter, the second ePub created from the Mobi file will contain a few combined files (broken only for length limitations in the ePub, not with the original splits).

Since I like that remnant of print book behavior of having a deliberate page break on each chapter, even if that leaves a lot of extra white space on the chapter's last page, I noticed this. It doesn't make it "better" or "worse", just more what I prefer.
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Old 04-01-2012, 10:43 AM   #4
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Two points:

Conversion is "lossy", as others have said, in that there is likely some loss when converting from one format to another. Formats differ in what they support (metadata, text formatting, images, ...). Any not supported by the target format gets omitted or altered.

Conversion is "not lossy" in that the resulting file is a copy of the original. The original is not damaged or altered in any way. There is no need to delete the original after conversion. If you switch to a different device later you still have the original to either read (if the device supports that format) or use for a new conversion as necessary.

BTW, if you are converting ePub to MOBI for use on the Fire then you might consider using KindleGen2, either stand alone or via Kindle Previewer 2, for the conversion. It will create the new KF8 formatted partition that supports a much wider range of formatting (all of what ePub2 supports, I believe) and that the Fire will use.
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Old 04-02-2012, 12:15 AM   #5
Nalapombu
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Thanks for the info you guys, I appreciate it.

Since I only have a Fire right now, when I would get an EBook or other format other than a Kindle Fire format I would load it into Calibre and convert it to MOBI right off the bat. When I would load them onto the Fire many times they would not show up and I was told to go back and re-convert them to MOBI again. After doing this I would have a MOBI format and an ORINIAL MOBI format. When I would load that book, with the 2 MOBI formats onto the Fire, they would show up and look great. I still don't understand why it does this, but it is what it is.

Anyway, after converting all the books to MOBI that I load into Calibre, I would go in a remove the other formats except the MOBI ones. I checked the Calibre Book List folder a minute ago and every book I have in there is stored as a MOBI file. After I loaded the original book file whether it be EBook or whatever, I would go in and delete the original file. So now I am left with only the MOBI version of some of the books I have.

I stopped deleting the book files because I know one day I am going to get an IPAD and I would want to read some of these books on it. I don't know the file format that the IPAD uses and I don't know how well the MOBI files will work when I convert them to the format that is IPAD friendly. I know that there is an Amazon Kindle APP for the IPAD though, so I may be OK. I'll just keep the original file for all the books I have from now on just to be on the safe side.

Thanks

Nalajr
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Old 04-02-2012, 02:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nalapombu View Post
... I don't know the file format that the IPAD uses ...
The iPad is a general use computer, not a dedicated ebook reader. As such it can't read any ebook, at least on its own.

In order to read an ebook on an iPad you must have an ebook reading app installed. What format(s) you can read depends on the installed app(s). Apple's own iBooks app is installed by default and it reads ePub format (sort of). You can also install other readers, including Amazon's Kindle for iOS app.
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