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Old 05-06-2009, 02:04 PM   #1
Johannes
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Kindle DX and A4 PDFs

This could be the reader I've been waiting for.

So, how good is Amazon's 9.7" device in reading A4 size pdf docs? Anyone any info?


thanks,
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Old 05-06-2009, 02:11 PM   #2
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From the User's Guide: "Your Kindle DX is able to display most PDF documents.
When your Kindle is held in portrait orientation, PDF documents are displayed in their original layout and fit the entire screen of the device. White margins of PDF documents are automatically cropped to maximize the amount of content shown
on the screen.
In landscape orientation, Kindle automatically magnifies your document to fit the width of the screen to improve readability.
A black outline defines the limit of the page of the PDF document."

I think A4 is slightly longer than American standard page size, so it might take 2 screens to display a "page" of the PDF file, if it was set up for A4 size. However, the difference is small, so it might fit on one page, if the margins were set fairly wide, as is the case in a lot of technical documents.

Until someone gets their hands on a DX, it is going to be hard to know for sure.
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Old 05-06-2009, 03:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susan_cassidy View Post
I think A4 is slightly longer than American standard page size, so it might take 2 screens to display a "page" of the PDF file, if it was set up for A4 size.
In portrait mode, your quote from the manual suggests that an A4 will be displayed one page per screen but there would likely be more whitespace remaining left and right with an A4. Another way of saying this is that the magnification will be less with an A4 because the original page is bigger. The landscape mode sounds like what iRex calls continuous mode (some desktop PDF readers do this too), where the pages are one long scroll and you may be seeing parts of two pages on the screen at once.

Last edited by wallcraft; 05-06-2009 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 05-06-2009, 05:52 PM   #4
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Old 05-07-2009, 03:10 PM   #5
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It sounds like it will display them okay. It automatically crops white space (the margins) according to the manual, so fitting the rest to the screen it will display at pretty close to 100% in portrait orientation. Or you can turn it to landscape and view half a page at a time at 100% or better.

Alas, it won't annotate or highlight pdf documents, and text-to-speech doesn't work with them, and there's some doubt about search (in one place in the manual it seems to say it will search the body of the pdf, but in another place it says it will only search the metadata).

So it depends whether you just want to read the pdfs or whether you want to do more.
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Old 05-07-2009, 03:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catsittingstill View Post
there's some doubt about search (in one place in the manual it seems to say it will search the body of the pdf, but in another place it says it will only search the metadata).
It will search the metadata only in "all documents" searches, but will search the body of the current PDF when you are reading it. This is a significant shortcoming, because searching across your entire ebook collection was a major feature of the Kindles that is missing with PDFs.
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Old 05-07-2009, 04:18 PM   #7
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Still, I will likely be buying one of these, just to have for my PDF documents. I'll keep my books on my K1, and just move the most important of my PDF onto this new larger reader.

My eyes get so tired reading page after page of PDF on my computer. And, as mentioned a bazillion times already, I'm now into close to 4,000 pages in just one folder of documents for one case.

I am soooooo buying one of these! This is the one case where the memory limitation won't bother me, because I do not need to keep all case files with me at all times.
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Old 05-07-2009, 11:17 PM   #8
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Thanks all. Cat's remark that the DX automatically crops margins makes me feel reading A4/letter sized PDFs will be OK. (The technical docs I use intensively usually contain a significant margin space.) I pre-ordered a DX today. Now I have to be patient...
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Old 05-08-2009, 01:11 AM   #9
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Basically it seems that they aren't bothering to update the other parts of their software to make the indexing or annotations files for PDFs, etc. They're just slapping someone else's PDF reader software on there. Seems very lazy.
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Old 05-08-2009, 02:45 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirbruce View Post
Basically it seems that they aren't bothering to update the other parts of their software to make the indexing or annotations files for PDFs, etc. They're just slapping someone else's PDF reader software on there. Seems very lazy.
Heh, possibly because they didn't want to do it, but had their arm twisted (by the likes of the NYT and the universities.) So they probably waited until the last minute.

I would imagine, the PDF integration would become better fairly quickly, though firmware updates.
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Old 05-08-2009, 04:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonist View Post
Heh, possibly because they didn't want to do it, but had their arm twisted (by the likes of the NYT and the universities.) So they probably waited until the last minute.

I would imagine, the PDF integration would become better fairly quickly, though firmware updates.
Likely, your guess is right. Adobe's SDK might not also have had quite the right functionality, to get it done easily. Or they didn't have enough programmers/time to get it working in time. The folders thing would also seem fairly easily fixable, given enough resources. Maybe we will eventually see PDF indexing and Folders in some future release of firmware. Probably they have a month or two while the e-ink display production ramps up, to work on things a bit more.
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Old 05-11-2009, 11:42 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Heh, possibly because they didn't want to do it, but had their arm twisted (by the likes of the NYT and the universities.) So they probably waited until the last minute.

I would imagine, the PDF integration would become better fairly quickly, though firmware updates.
Well, it would be great if that were to happen. I'd probably sign up for one on the spot.

However I have never seen Amazon add a big capability like this in a firmware update. Now I've only had Kindles for about a year, so maybe that is just not long enough for it to happen but, can anybody else remember anything major, like support of a new format, or a serious upgrade in capability, that came out as a firmware update?

Take folders. How often have we heard about a firmware update and speculated that this time Amazon might finally give the Kindle folder or tag capability? Never happened.

Take text-to-speech--it came out for the Kindle 2, but never for the Kindle.

Take pdf support so far--it will come out for the KDX, but have we heard anything from Amazon about it coming to K1 or K2?

So that's why I don't expect pdf-search/highlight/annotate to come out for KDX in a firmware update. As far as I can tell, firmware updates mean barely-visible bug fixes or other minor improvements like speeding up page turns a little.
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Old 05-11-2009, 12:13 PM   #13
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Well the 1.2 firmware for K1 gave it WhisperSync, Image Zoom, and support for Greek and Monospace fonts, all of which came with the Kindle 2 2.0 firmware.
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Old 05-11-2009, 12:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickyMaveety View Post
Still, I will likely be buying one of these, just to have for my PDF documents. I'll keep my books on my K1, and just move the most important of my PDF onto this new larger reader.

My eyes get so tired reading page after page of PDF on my computer. And, as mentioned a bazillion times already, I'm now into close to 4,000 pages in just one folder of documents for one case.

I am soooooo buying one of these! This is the one case where the memory limitation won't bother me, because I do not need to keep all case files with me at all times.
Wouldn't an iRex DR1000 be a better choice? It appears to offer much better PDF support, including annotation, which the Kindle DX very noticably lacks.
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Old 05-11-2009, 01:41 PM   #15
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Wouldn't an iRex DR1000 be a better choice? It appears to offer much better PDF support, including annotation, which the Kindle DX very noticably lacks.
But at what, twice the price?
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