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Old 10-11-2013, 02:51 PM   #1
javimm
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Time to (maybe) retire my 5yo Hanlin V3

Hi.
It's been a long time since I wrote something on this forum, but never left reading it from time to time.
Anyway, I own a Jinke Hanlin V3 that I bought back in november 2008. It's been a total revolution for me and the most useful piece of technology I've ever owned. I've used it almost every day during all these 5 years. It still works like a charm.

A lot of things have happened in the ebook camp in all these years, and now I'm considering retiring it and buying something a bit more modern. First model that came to mind was the new Kindle PW 2, but I think it doesn't match all my criteria.

There are several conditions I want in my new ebook:
- 6" e-ink is a must. I don't need bigger and I don't want a smaller screen. I already own an iPad 3 and an iPhone 4S, so I want an e-ink device, and the crispier and best e-ink display there is. I assume it'd be an eink Pearl screen.

- Illuminated screen: Seems to be a huge step forward in the ebook world, as the Kindle PW and others (Kobo Glow, Onyx Boox i62HD, Cybook Odyssey HD,...) have it and everybody seems to agree is better than a conventional non-illuminated one. I'd like to know if it's that big of a deal.

- ALL my books are in FB2 format. I'm spanish and the V3 has had a huge following here (under the Papyre brand), so almost all ebooks you can find are in this format. I have a 20.400 (that's not a typo) high quality ebook Calibre library (and growing) in FB2, so it's a big plus for me that the ebook could read this format. I don't need any online ebook store, as I have books to read for 20 lifes. Here is were the Kindle fails, unless I jb it and install some FB2 reader as Coolreader.

- I want total control over the layout of the page: margins, font and font size, line spacing, etc. I like my pages how I like them, and I want to be able to change every parameter to my taste. I think I've managed to get a great page layout that suits my liking: tight margins and line spacing like a paperback edition, great footnotes and nice font (DejaVu Seriff). A page sample of my page layout:


- Availability in Spain. I don't mind ordering online, but must be a EU vendor as I don't want to deal with customs.

- I'd like the e-reader to have some kind of active community and support and it should be as bug-free as possible. I remember when I first tried my V3 it was a buggy piece of hardware, but due to the fantastic spanish and russioan community it evolved to be a fantastic e-reader.

- Price: Around 150€ or less. Not critical.

After doing some research, the Kindle PW 2 has some pros (mainstream e-reader so a lot of support, huge community, great quality e-reader, fantastic price, amazon.es availability, good form factor and looks nice and weight very little). It also has its cons though: FB2 is a no-no unless jailbroken, amazon ads (YUCK!!), and I don't know how far I can customize it.

How about other alternatives as the Cybook Odyssey HD, Onyx BOOX i62HD, Pocketbook 602, etc?.

Is the upgrade from my V3 worth it?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-11-2013, 05:02 PM   #2
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I have a Cybook Odessey that I love. So I am a bit biased, but I would suggest a Cybook Odessey, since it can read fb2 and fits most of your other criteria.

There isn't much of a community ( maybe on the French subforum?), and there are some bugs, but Bookeen does their best to get rid of the bugs before release.
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Old 10-11-2013, 09:20 PM   #3
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I suspect your page customisation requirements might put Kindle out of the race, but poke around in the Kindle dev forum maybe to see if there are current hacks around that. (I know there used to be one to allow alternative fonts, but I'm not sure if that's still usable.)
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Old 10-13-2013, 09:51 AM   #4
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Thanks for the answers.
I'm starting to really like the new Kobo Aura. I've seen a few reviews and comparisons, and seems to meet most of my criteria, except the FB2 part.
I've read that converting from FB2 to epub works pretty well, and shouldn't be a problem. Converting from FB2 to Mobi or AZW seems to be more problematic, as some people recommends converting to epub first and then to AZW. If I need to use another format, I think I'd rather support epub than a propietary format.

Anyway, the Aura has extended page layout options which I like, and seems to be a high regarded ereader.

Some opinions on it or other options are welcomed :-)
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Old 10-13-2013, 12:51 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by javimm View Post
I'm starting to really like the new Kobo Aura. I've seen a few reviews and comparisons, and seems to meet most of my criteria, except the FB2 part.
There is a port of CoolReader for Kobo. As a really new development it's not perfect yet, but fortunately the developer is enthusiastic, there are weekly updates of improved versions. Currently the 'search', 'go to' and 'dictionary' functions are missing, otherwise it's similar to Hanlin CR port. As a former Hanlin V5 user owning a lot of fb2 books I'm more and more satisfied with it.
Kindle version of CoolReader is similar in most aspects (I've used an using it on basic Kindle and Paperwhite), however the developer was not active in this year.
So, if you don't want an ereader with native fb2 support (like Cybook, Pocketbook or Onyx Boox), either Kobo Aura or Kindle Paperwhite would be a good choice.

More information of CoolReader for Kobo.
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Old 10-13-2013, 02:23 PM   #6
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There is a port of CoolReader for Kobo...
So, if you don't want an ereader with native fb2 support (like Cybook, Pocketbook or Onyx Boox), either Kobo Aura or Kindle Paperwhite would be a good choice.

More information of CoolReader for Kobo.
I'd really like native FB2 support, but having the option of installing CoolReader is just fantastic news.
Looking for more info in some spanish forums, it seems that the Kobo is capable of reading FB2 directly, at least that's what a couple of people has said, so that's awesome news if true.
The Kobo looks like my next ebook if I finally decide to upgrade. Christmas time seems like a good time to do so
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Old 10-13-2013, 02:50 PM   #7
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Looking for more info in some spanish forums, it seems that the Kobo is capable of reading FB2 directly, at least that's what a couple of people has said, so that's awesome news if true.
Oh, yes, I almost forget about it. Kobo has a very basic native fb2 support. No table of contents, no chapters, no footnotes - just the plain text.
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Old 10-13-2013, 04:59 PM   #8
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Oh, yes, I almost forget about it. Kobo has a very basic native fb2 support. No table of contents, no chapters, no footnotes - just the plain text.
Well, that's not too good then, but better than nothing I guess. I hope it improves in the future, but I'm going to assume that it won't be the case. I need to research FB2->epub conversion to see how easy and painless it is.
I'm really liking the Kobo, and I can order it online from a well known (known in Spain, I mean) spanish shop.
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Old 10-21-2013, 01:47 AM   #9
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Well, that's not too good then, but better than nothing I guess. I hope it improves in the future, but I'm going to assume that it won't be the case. I need to research FB2->epub conversion to see how easy and painless it is.
I'm really liking the Kobo, and I can order it online from a well known (known in Spain, I mean) spanish shop.
Go with any of the new andorid based eink readers that have come out. As that will allow you to use coolreader the software that is used for fb2 books in v3. I personally moved from v3 to a rooted nook touch as I liked the physical buttons in v3 and find a nook touch physical button were a good replacement specaially as they are on both side of the device so can use any hand to change pages without touching the screen.
An annoyance when I first upgraded was that I had a habit of touching the v3 screen to remove dust etc that changes the page in the new touch screen readers. So asked and got the coolreader developer to add the abilty to disable or enable touch while in coolreader.
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Old 10-21-2013, 05:07 AM   #10
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Go with any of the new andorid based eink readers that have come out. As that will allow you to use coolreader the software that is used for fb2 books in v3. I personally moved from v3 to a rooted nook touch as I liked the physical buttons in v3 and find a nook touch physical button were a good replacement specaially as they are on both side of the device so can use any hand to change pages without touching the screen.
An annoyance when I first upgraded was that I had a habit of touching the v3 screen to remove dust etc that changes the page in the new touch screen readers. So asked and got the coolreader developer to add the abilty to disable or enable touch while in coolreader.
Thanks for your answer.
I've decided to keep my V3 instead of buying another reader. It still satisfies my needs: reading books (the way I like it)!!. I've been thinking about this this last week and I prefer not spending the money in something that is going to be a constant pain, replacing something that still works great and reads FB2 with no problems. I've tried conversions from FB2 to several formats, and the output quality is not there, so I've decided not dealing with that until my V3 dies.

I was surprised the other day though, as a brick and mortar spanish shop sells the Kindle. I had the chance to test the PW 1, and the light makes it a fantastic device. Putting it side by side with the Kindle Touch, it's like night and day. They are a lot more responsive and faster than my old V3, but that's expected.

Your Android suggestion is a good one. I'll keep an eye on those in the future to see if some company offers one with a good screen and the ability to install Coolreader.

Why ereader companies keep their systems closed so much is beyond me. Even Apple, being as closed as they are, let you install and customize a lot more than any ereader company (I can install a FB2 reader in my iPad, even if Apple sells books though iBooks).

Which ereaders do use Android?. I think Sony PRS-T1,2,3 are Android based, but they have to be rooted to install anything. You've mentioned Nook too. Any more?.

Cheers.
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Old 10-21-2013, 09:41 AM   #11
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I am happy with my nook touch so have not looked for any others but this one form the forum news page http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=224348 should meet most of your requirements. The company is European might even be selling a spanish version
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