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Old 08-13-2013, 09:17 PM   #1
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E-Reader or Tablet.

Hi everyone,

I'm new here and would like to know your opinions on which device should I get. Here are the details:

1) Ebooks available - computers, manga and magazines
2) Budget - less than $800
3) Able to read long hours without recharging.
4) Prefer larger screen.
5) Color screen will be a plus.
6) Most of the readings will be done at night.

Any suggestions?

**Will add more details if I can think of in the future**
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Old 08-13-2013, 10:43 PM   #2
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What format are the books you'll want to be reading? What sorts of magazines? What does "computers" mean?

If what I suspect is true, and you want to be reading, at least some of the time, large-format image- or diagram-heavy things sometimes with colour and sometimes in PDF format, you'll want a larger-format tablet, like an iPad or whatever the Android equivalent is. (Galaxy?) Honestly, I rec the iPad, but opinions vary. Check out refurbs; you still get a good device with a warranty, but you get a bit of a discount.

If you also want to sometimes read text (epub format, mobi format, etc) and perhaps some small-format black-and-white manga, have a look at an eink device at least six inches in size (think about going to 6.8 inches if your manga isn't all very small). The eink device will be light, cheap, have a very long battery life, giving it an easy edge over tablets for the purposes for which it is suited. I recommend an eink device with a frontlight; it doesn't impact battery life much if at all, and it will be more readily usable under a variety of lighting conditions.

It is very reasonable to have both a tablet and an eink device, fitted for their individual purposes, and your budget will stretch to that.

Remember also that we're getting near to the beginning of a new product cycle for lots of brands right now, so if you can sit back and wait a couple months, you might have the opportunity to either pick up a new-new device, or get a better price on trailing-edge products.
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
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Well, at the moment, those e-books that I have are in ePub format and mainly Microsoft and Adobe. Yes, there are colored diagrams. Most magazines are those that I download in PDF format. I know e-reader is the best for novels (don't like reading novel) but the battery just last so long compare to tablet. I guess there isn't a device out there that can tailored the way I need.

Yup, Amazon will be coming out with new e-readers soon. Can't wait to check them out. I do really want to try out Kobo or Sony due to good reviews.

Wonder when will the color e-ink will be available for mass production?
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Old 08-14-2013, 01:47 AM   #4
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Colour e-ink is a long way from "good enough"... 4096 colours make the screen look incredibly bleak, washed out and it just doesn't stack up to even the cheapest LCD (16 million colours). Think of old ads from a store or cinema that closed down years ago. That's the kind of level the colours are right now.

So yeah, I wouldn't get my hopes up any time soon for a "mass production" if it doesn't appeal to the public and is not feasible from a cost/price point of view.
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Old 08-14-2013, 02:47 AM   #5
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Does sound like it has to be a tablet I'd suggest at least 10" if you want to read magazines although you can always flip a smaller device to it's side.

I'd say a Samsung Note tablet or an iPad depending on your preference.
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:11 AM   #6
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Computers (books), manga and magazines: IMHO, definitely tablet! Faster CPU (important for rich content), better display (better as in more colors, better resolution), bigger displays.
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:27 AM   #7
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Just checked out the Kobo and Sony e-reader and Kobo Arc at my local bookstore. First impression, really small. From 5" to 7". But I do like the Kobo Aura HD and Sony T2. They are really light.

I have to say I'm really surprise that e-ink technology has been around for so long and yet, not much improvement. E.g. compare to smartphone's screen, is now already 6.44" on the Z Ultra but e-reader still stuck between 5" to 7". Only recently, we saw a couple of 9.7" e-reader starting to pop up. Manufacturers should wake up and compete with smartphones and tablets. Otherwise, one day, no one will buy it.
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TadW View Post
Computers (books), manga and magazines: IMHO, definitely tablet! Faster CPU (important for rich content), better display (better as in more colors, better resolution), bigger displays.

Isn't tablet makes our eye strain. I have not own a tablet but have read articles after articles about it.
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Old 08-14-2013, 04:04 AM   #9
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A tablet meets all your requirements, except "long hours without recharging". Reading PDFs on e-ink displays are rather "meh" due to the sluggishness and the panning. To me, it borders to unusable on the Kobo Glo. Larger screen sizes are also more typical with tablets, and if you read mostly at night you won't have the problem of reading in sunlight (LCD screens are really hard to see when the sun is out).

Wanting a large screen and low weight are desires that clash a little. A Nexus 7 (2nd gen) is light, but only 7". An iPad offers 9.7", but is noticeable heavier. Those two would be my suggestions for a tablet. iPads are great if you don't mind being locked into the Apple ecosystem (you can buy books from anywhere, though), and you get many years of support. Google is good about supporting their own devices well too, and that's why the Nexus is the only Android tablet I would recommend. Every other company seems to drop support pretty quickly. Just make sure you get a 2nd gen one (not out in Germany before Aug 30, but out in the US already, and I don't know about NZ).

For e-ink readers, you'd want one with a front light, so that pretty much means a 6" Glo/Paperwhite/Bookeen/etc or the 6.8" Aura. I think there was something larger from Onyx/Boox, but not sure. I prefer smaller sizes for an e-ink reader because I want to be able to hold and use it in one hand. The Bookeen Odyssey HD FL has a HD display and physical buttons in addition to the touch screen, which makes it my favorite so far, but I haven't had it long yet.

As for the eye strain issue ... well, it depends on your eyes and what you're comfortable with. With a front-lit reader, the LEDs are in front of the display (duh!) and illuminate the screen like a room light would. That makes it pretty natural, almost (not quite) as if you would read a paper book with lights on. I find it a lot more comfortable and I can read in the dark and then look away from the screen without seeing a ghost image of the screen for several minutes. You can also make the light really dim (can't turn it off with the Paperwhite, unlike with the Glo/Aura/Bookeen).

With LCD screens, you don't have little LEDs in the device's frame, but the light comes from behind the display, so the screen shines at you. It's like looking into a lamp that illuminates your face. It does make for perfectly even lightning (usually) and gives you vibrant colors. I can read on LCD screens just fine, but after usually sitting 10+ hours in front of an LCD screen when I'm working, I find front-lit e-ink devices more relaxing on my eyes and I subjectively feel that it makes my eyes get less tired. It's also nice to only have to re-charge the battery every few weeks instead of once a day like I do with a tablet.

To a large degree, the decision is a matter of preference. If a good portion of your reading materials are going to be comics and PDFs, though, I'd go with a tablet, and then probably an iPad 4 (or wait for 5) if you want a larger display. If not, then a Nexus 7 (2nd Gen), which costs less. If you read mostly text-based e-books, then I'd get one of the front-lit e-ink readers. (For the price of an iPad you get a Nexus 7 AND an e-ink reader.)
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Old 08-14-2013, 05:13 PM   #10
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Talking about reading on a device at night, I tried it on my 5" smartphone and turned off the light. I set the background to black and the letters to white, within 5 minutes, my eyes already sore. I set the brightness to auto though.

I was thinking, maybe I made a mistake by switching the light off or maybe blaming the screen too small and also because it is a back-lit screen. Again thinking, what if I get a 10.1" tablet, that will be even worse.
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:21 PM   #11
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The biggest things that help me when reading on a tablet (not that I do it often) are cranking down the brightness and using ScreenDim to dim things even further.
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:37 PM   #12
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The biggest things that help me when reading on a tablet (not that I do it often) are cranking down the brightness and using ScreenDim to dim things even further.

So, when you said ScreenDim, is it part of the feature on your tablet?
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:41 PM   #13
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So, when you said ScreenDim, is it part of the feature on your tablet?
It's an app developed by a member here.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...Dim.Full&hl=en
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
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It's an app developed by a member here.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...Dim.Full&hl=en

Cool. I'll give it a try.
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:53 PM   #15
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I have notice ppl say that bigger screen takes a little longer to load up new page with diagram. So, is it something to do with the screen (e-ink)/processor or RAM?

Also saw a clip on Youtube yesterday about a review on the browser of Aura HD. It reminds me of old school x486 PC. Maybe worse than that.
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