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Old 10-06-2008, 09:23 AM   #1
Slider1960
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Gen 3 or BeBook (Hanlin)

My partner has offered to get me a reader for Xmas and with the potential sales bubble in these things it's probably best to move now than find them out of stock.

So far I have only physically played with the new Sony reader, but have eliminated it from my choices simply because I don't want to get locked into a single source for content. My reading will mostly be newer fiction - Sci Fi, thrillers and some work based PDF etc. so I really want support for the mobipocket format. I am aware of the dedrm script but would prefer not to have to jump through hoops just to have the Sony reader.

I have now really got my choice down to two products: the gen 3 (currently in stock and £179 from WH Smiths) or the BeBook (£229 online).

I can see a lot of posts here for the gen 3 and it seems to have a big user base, and few for the Hamlin, which is essentially what the BeBook is. From what I have seen, the numbered buttons on the BeBook might make navigation a bit quicker than the tocu thingie on the gen 3, but can see little else between them.

I am under pressure from her indoors to make a decision, and would welcome any info, or comments you can give.

cheers
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:31 AM   #2
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The BeBook supports more non-DRM formats then the gen3. Also the BeBook supports folders. But the BeBook currently lacks dictionary lookup for Mobipocket format. If Dictionary looking is something you can do without (till thahey add it if they add it) then go for the BeBook.
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:34 AM   #3
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Hello Slider, and welcome to the forums first of all, and you've come to the right place

Having a BeBook it would come natural to me to recommend that, right? Wrong.

I would buy a Cybook if I had ordered one today. Simply because the Cybook's implementation of Mobi support is way better than BeBook/Hanlins currently is. The cons of Bebook mobi support is:

1) It does NOT support dictionary lookup from within another book, this will be released at a later date, we do however not know when this will be released or if at all.

2) BeBook's mobipocket reader does NOT support changing of fonts, they supply Arial, Times New Roman and the systems lBook font. And alla of these are evil fonts that shouldnt be used IMHO.

I also have a bit of problems with the fact that when I read a mobipocket book on the BeBook, it looks like it's using doublespacing between lines, that might however be a setting somewhere that I am not aware of.

And there is also the price issue, at £179, the Cybook is a bargain compared to the BeBook as far as I am concerned.

Last edited by Slite; 10-06-2008 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:38 AM   #4
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I have only used the Gen3, not the BeBook. So I may be biased.

I'd say go for the Gen3. I can't see the buttons on the BeBook being worth the extra £50.

The controls on the Gen3 aren't perfect, and the library is awkward once you get more than a hundred books on there, but in general I've been very pleased with mine.

PDFs won't be ideal, since they're (in general) formatted for a much bigger page size than's available on either the Gen3 or the BeBook. PDF format is great for print-ready stuff. Terrible for eBooks.

So - go for the Gen3, and spend the £50 on a subscription to Analog and Asimov's, both available at fictionwise - each is only $33 for a year's subscription, less if you're a fictionwise club member.

Paul



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Originally Posted by Slider1960 View Post
My partner has offered to get me a reader for Xmas and with the potential sales bubble in these things it's probably best to move now than find them out of stock.

So far I have only physically played with the new Sony reader, but have eliminated it from my choices simply because I don't want to get locked into a single source for content. My reading will mostly be newer fiction - Sci Fi, thrillers and some work based PDF etc. so I really want support for the mobipocket format. I am aware of the dedrm script but would prefer not to have to jump through hoops just to have the Sony reader.

I have now really got my choice down to two products: the gen 3 (currently in stock and £179 from WH Smiths) or the BeBook (£229 online).

I can see a lot of posts here for the gen 3 and it seems to have a big user base, and few for the Hamlin, which is essentially what the BeBook is. From what I have seen, the numbered buttons on the BeBook might make navigation a bit quicker than the tocu thingie on the gen 3, but can see little else between them.

I am under pressure from her indoors to make a decision, and would welcome any info, or comments you can give.

cheers
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:46 AM   #5
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The BeBook seems to use the rather primitive Java implementation of the Mobi Reader that's also used on the iLiad. The Gen3's Mobi reader is a lot better and, as has been said, allows you to load whatever fonts you wish on the machine.

The £179 package from W.H.Smith's is a great deal.
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:48 AM   #6
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The BeBook seems to use the rather primitive Java implementation of the Mobi Reader that's also used on the iLiad. The Gen3's Mobi reader is a lot better and, as has been said, allows you to load whatever fonts you wish on the machine.

The £179 package from W.H.Smith's is a great deal.
Yepp, thats the one I would have chosen if I had been shopping for an e-reader today, which I am incidently, since wifey wants a reader for herself.

But silly WH SMith is only shipping to the UK ... bad things will come their way once us Swedes return to our ancient roots and go a'plundering again!
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Old 10-06-2008, 09:50 AM   #7
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I'll second the Cybook recommendation if the main use is going to be reading fiction.

And don't discount the Dictionary. I'm still surprised as to how often I use the feature, and I hardly ever used to actually refer to a dictionary in the past.

The Bebook might be a better option of you want access to more file formats and folder navigation NOW. Bookeen has said that Folder navigation is on their to do list, but that is no guarantee.

Finally, the Price is Stupidly good right now from WH smith, and you have the added advantage that if you don't like it you can return it to a high stree store for a full refund, an d then get the Bebook
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Old 10-06-2008, 10:00 AM   #8
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Yepp, thats the one I would have chosen if I had been shopping for an e-reader today, which I am incidently, since wifey wants a reader for herself.

But silly WH SMith is only shipping to the UK ... bad things will come their way once us Swedes return to our ancient roots and go a'plundering again!
Well You could awyas get it delivered to the UK and get it forwarded to you.

I Believe NetSlut offered to do that here, any you could always ask.

However with the drop in Bookeen's official prices while you might save some, its probably no longer as large a difference.
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Old 10-06-2008, 10:15 AM   #9
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Thanks for the rapid and informative replies

What surprises me is the honesty of some of you guys who use one product but are prepared to offer the alternative as a better option for me. I was sort of expecting a much more polarised response.

It does seem that the Cybook would be the best bet for me and I'm pretty sure my partner will appreciate me going the cheaper option

Thanks again
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Old 10-07-2008, 06:54 AM   #10
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Well, it's ordered
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:20 AM   #11
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Hope you enjoy it! You'll find lots of free books nicely formatted for the Gen3 in our "MobiPocket Books" download forum.
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Old 10-07-2008, 04:27 PM   #12
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2) BeBook's mobipocket reader does NOT support changing of fonts, they supply Arial, Times New Roman and the systems lBook font. And alla of these are evil fonts that shouldnt be used IMHO.
There would be the way to change fonts, just wait for a new firmware release.

Also, you can easily get a 25 pounds discount for BeBook - some persons posted email to use.

Cannot personally recommend with one to buy - in my country the most used format for e-books is FB2, and it is easier to get non-DRM version of the book from some p2p network, than legally bought electronic version.

Last edited by torbich; 10-07-2008 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 10-07-2008, 04:47 PM   #13
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I think you made the right choice Slider. I have just taken delivery of the BeBook and I am not overly impressed with it. I needed a device that would read DRM Mobiepocket, but wanted to go the cheapest option possible. Here in Australia it would cost me $600 AUD for the Cybook and only $400 for the BeBook so my choice was clear.

Having owned the Sony 500 and the Iliad, the BeBook feels very cheaply constructed. The page seems very clear with good contrast, however the layout of books on the device is not attractive at all. I know I can change fonts but still need to figure this out and once done may have me feeling a little differently about the device.

Harry, you are wrong in saying that the mobiepocket implementation on BeBook is the same primitive version as the Iliad, it is in fact more primitive in it's implementation.

The implementation of LIT format hasn't impressed me at al as the page turning is incredibly slow.

EPUB seems to work very well

Things I do like about it, it is light, the layout of the buttons is good. When you go to the third font size and it transforms to landscape layout, it is very easy to read from and if held in the right hand, very comfortable (still have to get used to that as I normally read holding a book in my left hand). I also like the easy 'go to page' function that the device has, even though the bookmarking is a bit primitive after the Sony's very good system. I also love the capacity to have files in a folder structure which is something I have really missed after the Iliad.

Overall the jury is still out as to whether I will keep this device for very long.

Karen
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Old 10-08-2008, 06:18 AM   #14
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Thanks for all the advice, especially your honesty sianon. I may get my toy sooner than xmas now as my partner decied she wanted a Wii and Wii fit combo, which I've just ordered and that will also be her birthday pressie later this month - so maybe I'll get my ebook too.

I have already downloaded some of the free stuff from the upload forum, and created accounts on both mobipocket and fictionwise. In FW I have a load of stuff in my wish list which I'll buy and download once I can get my pid and register it.

getting pretty exited about the whole thing :-)
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Old 10-08-2008, 02:45 PM   #15
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So far I have only physically played with the new Sony reader, but have eliminated it from my choices simply because I don't want to get locked into a single source for content. My reading will mostly be newer fiction - Sci Fi, thrillers and some work based PDF etc. so I really want support for the mobipocket format. I am aware of the dedrm script but would prefer not to have to jump through hoops just to have the Sony reader.
Thought I'd replied to this, but don't see my comment... In short, your exclusion of the Sony due to "locked into a single source" is wrong - e.g. Baen/Websubscriptions, electronic libraries, FeedBooks, etc, even without any conversions. Also, while you might well decide you require MobiPocket support, your stated reason for wanting it doesn't hold up - "newer fiction" doesn't imply, let alone require it.

/Gwyn
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