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Old 02-09-2009, 04:08 PM   #1
kressg23
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Ebook reader reviews

Hi All,

Wow, with all the buzz about the new Kindle 2, it's not hard to get sucked into the chaos! I've narrowed my search to being between Kindle and Sony for my first (and probably only) device. It seems the Sony 505 is better than the 700 and the Kindle 2 seems pretty cool but for one very large problem. No SD card slot.

So, to you gurus out there, if you had the choice of Sony or Kindle, any version of either, which would you choose to do some typical reading of formats compatible with whichever device you chose? No PDFs, nothing out of the ordinary, just average novel reading.

Oh, and how long does it take for places like MobileRead and CNET to come out with reviews on these new devices. I'm really curious to see how Kindle 2 compares with all the other devices out there. (Do I really need an SD slot?)
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Old 02-10-2009, 06:22 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by kressg23 View Post
Hi All,

Wow, with all the buzz about the new Kindle 2, it's not hard to get sucked into the chaos! I've narrowed my search to being between Kindle and Sony for my first (and probably only) device. It seems the Sony 505 is better than the 700 and the Kindle 2 seems pretty cool but for one very large problem. No SD card slot.

So, to you gurus out there, if you had the choice of Sony or Kindle, any version of either, which would you choose to do some typical reading of formats compatible with whichever device you chose? No PDFs, nothing out of the ordinary, just average novel reading.

Oh, and how long does it take for places like MobileRead and CNET to come out with reviews on these new devices. I'm really curious to see how Kindle 2 compares with all the other devices out there. (Do I really need an SD slot?)
For novel reading, I'd say both are good. It all depends on the format of the books you'll buy, if you buy DRM'd books, if you're willing to remove DRM, etc.

From what I hear, the Kindle 2 will have a removable battery (which is always a plus in my eyes), but I like the looks of the Sony much better (I know, it's not important, but the eye wants something too!) So, in the end, it's all in the eye of the beholder...

About the SD card slot, I personally wouldn't buy a device without any extendable memory slot (be it SD, SDHC, flash, or any other format out there). I don't like the fact that I have to use a cable to add new content to my device (or must use some form of wireless), I'd rather just plug in a card into my card slot on my pc. It's much faster than having to search for that cable again, and wireless...
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:32 AM   #3
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About the SD card slot, I personally wouldn't buy a device without any extendable memory slot (be it SD, SDHC, flash, or any other format out there). I don't like the fact that I have to use a cable to add new content to my device (or must use some form of wireless), I'd rather just plug in a card into my card slot on my pc. It's much faster than having to search for that cable again, and wireless...
Provided the device supports USB2, copying via USB is really just as quick as transferring via a card reader. Why not just leave the cable permanently connected to your PC?

To the original poster, might I ask why you are only considering the Kindle and the Sony? Devices like the BeBook and CyBook offer many benefits over either (IMHO).
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:45 AM   #4
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If you are anything like me, who just wanted it for books, go with the Sony Reader. I got it and I never looked back
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Old 02-10-2009, 02:06 PM   #5
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As in MP3 players, it's useful to know if your device can play the intended source material (or to stretch the analogy, your cell phone carrier provides coverage in the areas where you intend to talk).

Here are two considerations concerning device-to-source material compatibility:
- Do you have access to public library offerings, which are mostly in Adobe Digital Editions? This includes paying $100/yr. for a NY Public Library non-resident card with access to over 12,000 ebooks. If so, get the Sony.
- Do you like newspapers and magazines for free? Donationware app Calibre can do that. Not all are as good as offered for pay by Kindle, but there's a greater selection. If so, get the Sony. (Note that Calibre is reportedly working on supporting .mobi output, which is compatible with the Kindle. When that happens, free magazines and newspapers will no longer be a consideration in selecting Kindle vs. Sony.)

For purchased books, selection, price, and convenience (whispernet) favor the Kindle.
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:44 PM   #6
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... and the things which favour the CyBook are:

- Excellent font handling: load any font you wish onto the machine, and view any book in any font.

- The best MobiPocket implementation of any eInk device.

- Dictionary lookup.

- Replaceable battery (which the Kindle also has, but the Sony doesn't).

- Access to a huge range of eBook stores.
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Old 02-10-2009, 04:51 PM   #7
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... and the things which favour the CyBook are:
- Excellent font handling: load any font you wish onto the machine, and view any book in any font.
In addition to being able to load any font you want, you also get 12 different sizes to choose from. This option has thrilled and surprised every person I've shown it to, I often hear "I can read it without my glasses!" This is the largest range of font sizes offered, as far as I know.
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Old 02-12-2009, 05:33 AM   #8
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Provided the device supports USB2, copying via USB is really just as quick as transferring via a card reader. Why not just leave the cable permanently connected to your PC?
Because my case is standing on the ground, and my cats tend to play with cables... Especially if they are only attached on one side

What HarryT says about replaceable battery, for me that's one of the reasons I wouldn't ever buy a Sony (unless they give it a replaceable battery...) even though I really like the looks of it.

But you better don't listen to me, as I'm the eternal doubter...
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Old 02-12-2009, 11:26 AM   #9
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if you had the choice of Sony or Kindle, any version of either, which would you choose to do some typical reading of formats compatible with whichever device you chose? No PDFs, nothing out of the ordinary, just average novel reading.
What the Kindle has over all the alternatives is convenience. The Kindle store is on average as good on pricing as you can get from a single store and has the most ebooks, buy from a web browser or from the device, one click and the ebook is queued up for download to the Kindle when you next turn on its whispernet connection. So if you are in range of Sprint's cell phone towers Kindle is great, and if not the standard download to a PC and transfer via USB option is still available. Also, where the whispernet is available you can get 1st chapter samples and only buy the book (from the Kindle) if you like it.

For lending library ebooks the PRS-505 wins. You can read MOBI library books on the Kindle, but only after running a script on them and the PDF library books that the PRS-505 can read are typically more numerous.

The Kindle 2's 1.4 GB of available internal memory is enough for most purposes. I put a 1 GB SD card in my Kindle 1 and I find that is plenty and I never take it out (it is hard to reach). On the other hand, I find the SD card slot on the Hanlin V3 very useful because it is so easy to pop cards in and out. If the Kindle 2 has an SD slot you might use it, but I doubt you will ever fill up the internal memory with novels.

Last edited by wallcraft; 02-12-2009 at 11:29 AM.
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Old 02-14-2009, 02:00 AM   #10
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I have to be honest in saying I've not done a lot of research on the Cybook, but now that it has been mentioned, I went to the website. Wow. At first glance, I can say that this one could be in the running. Can any of you point me in a direction to get more info on it vs. the Sony or Kindle? I'll probably only be reading novels on it. No newspapers. I'm fairly computer literate, so if I have to convert to a different format, I'm capable of doing that. DRM or no - that will probably depend on the book I'm looking for and whether it is available in a format compatible with whichever device I finally decide upon.

One question about e-Ink... My mom has a Kindle 1. She has read 2 novels on it so far and it already looks as though the text has burned into the screen slightly. Is that normal?
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Old 02-14-2009, 02:01 AM   #11
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One question about e-Ink... My mom has a Kindle 1. She has read 2 novels on it so far and it already looks as though the text has burned into the screen slightly. Is that normal?
It's called ghosting... and it's worse in colder temps. However, you shouldn't see it during normal use. You usually only see it when the device is off and the screen is blanked.

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