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Old 11-07-2009, 04:09 PM   #1
Blue Ion
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Astak Pocket Pro or Sony PRS-300

Sorry for the thread number one billion about what to choose, but, that is what you get when you have a specific subsection

Anyways, I'm looking for a small ebook to gift to my mother, she likes to read, specially in the night, that's why i'll also ask your recommendations for a night lamp to go with the thing.
I'll also prefer it to be small so it can be carryable and allow her to read wherever she goes.

My price target is 200€, they are still a bit overpriced in my opinion, but there is nothing we can do there. As an upper limit, I'm willing to go as far as 250€ if you have an other suggestion that is REALLY worth it.

With that limit in mind, I can only recall those two. The Sony-PRS 300 for 199 € available at an spanish reseller, and the Astak Pocket PRO with an offer of 199 $ until the end of november.

Comparing those two feature wise, the Astak wins for a wide margin, but since screen quality, font quality and perhaps usability is more important on those things, I'll like to ask you how are you doing with these devices.

I've read a couple of reviews and the font seems to be a problem for the Astak, and perhaps some weak format support but considering firmwares comes and goes, I'll like to see if they improved.

Also, good availability of books is a plus.

Finally I'm from Spain, something which could prove troublesome to get the devices here, at least the Astak which, by the way, I've haven't found the way to order to Spain.

Hopefully I'll be able to order through a friend's company and avoid the clusterfucks the customs usually create with imports, specially with expansive stuff and perhaps avoid taxes on the way (tough that's definitely not the intention).
They tried to charge 110€ extra to an other friend of mine when he imported the PRS-600, luckily he managed to get away with "just" 40€ but man...

Well thanks for reading, for your time.
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Old 11-08-2009, 01:57 PM   #2
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If you consider Astak Pocket Pro, take a look at Bebook Mini. It is the European version, sold by Endless Idea. The webpage is www.mybebook.com. To lessen the hassle, check out http://www.apoloxxi.com/, they are located in spain. Good luck.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:11 PM   #3
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Yes, that is the spanish reseller I was talking about.
I've taken a look at the BeBook, and seems a very worthwhile option (specially if they are the same).

I've tried to order one from them to see the final price with shipping and tax and strangely they skip the tax in the paypal price
ie:
Quote:
Sub-Total: 199.00 EUR
MyBeBook World Zone Rates (Shipping to Spain): 9.95 EUR
Tax: 31.77 EUR
Total: 208.95 EUR
Oh well, if they really include tax, it won't be that much.

One final doubt I have with both of these devices. Is 5" too small to read, in that it would be better a 6"? or it doesn't make much difference?
How does the Astak or BeBook compare with the Sony?
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Old 11-08-2009, 07:43 PM   #4
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There are some people's opinions on the pocket pro versus the prs-300 here http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=61389

Astak do ship the pocket pro internationally, so no problem there. I'm not sure about the Sony but you can add fonts to the Pocket Pro (there is a thread somewhere here how to do that).

When it comes to availability of books, both devices support DRM-epub format, so your book choices for purchased books is essentially the same. Sony do have an ebookstore but it is not currently available outside the US or UK...besides if they do go international I somehow doubt they will restrict the sale to purely Sony e-readers.
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Old 11-08-2009, 08:33 PM   #5
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To buy a Pocket Pro from outside the US, use astak.com. The Pocket Pro is a Hanlin V5, which is sold under several names depending on where you live. The downside of buying from the US is the shipping and customs charges and the hassle (and cost) of returns for repair. On the other hand, the Pocket Pro is a good price and comes with a leather cover.
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Old 11-08-2009, 09:07 PM   #6
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To buy a Pocket Pro from outside the US, use astak.com. The Pocket Pro is a Hanlin V5, which is sold under several names depending on where you live. The downside of buying from the US is the shipping and customs charges and the hassle (and cost) of returns for repair. On the other hand, the Pocket Pro is a good price and comes with a leather cover.
Yeah, I'll go with the Astak since it comes with the cover, an AC USB charger and at the current us dolar/euro exchange it'll be cheaper, even with shipping (a full 40$ of shipping) and 16% of taxes it is around 40€ cheaper than the Bebook Mini.

Book availability could have been troublesome, but considering a lot of people are moving to the Adobe ePub format, I think this is not going to be much of a problem.
Hopefully Amazon will be forced to abandon their format and use ePub as well so everyone can enjoy their huge library.

Lets pray, however, that the 40€ saving won't come back to bite me in the ass with customs, a faulty device, or worse.


Thank you all for the support.
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Old 11-11-2009, 10:59 AM   #7
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One think you might want to consider if you haven't already bought. Astak is coming out with a holiday gift pack next week with a lots of stuff included. No word on the price yet, but the details are in this thread:

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=61533
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Old 11-11-2009, 11:38 AM   #8
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Did you think of looking at a Pocketbook 360? It is also a 5inch reader albeit for 240€. I have recently bought one and am very happy, as it is very stable (really important in an ebook for me), supports everything I could wish ( full justification, custom margin sizes, fast page forwardt, good file support, a page and time indicator, and dictionaries) and reprogrammable buttons...

The best E-ink reader I have experienced so far!

cheers,
kaas
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Old 11-11-2009, 01:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaas View Post
Did you think of looking at a Pocketbook 360? It is also a 5inch reader albeit for 240€. I have recently bought one and am very happy, as it is very stable (really important in an ebook for me), supports everything I could wish ( full justification, custom margin sizes, fast page forwardt, good file support, a page and time indicator, and dictionaries) and reprogrammable buttons...

The best E-ink reader I have experienced so far!

cheers,
kaas
Unfortunately it currently lacks the ability to read any DRM eBook format, which severely restricts its use for reading commercial eBooks. An ADE firmware update has been promised, but we all know the dangers of buying a device on promises of what it will be able to do in the future. I'd wait for this firmware to arrive before buying, personally.
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Old 11-11-2009, 01:52 PM   #10
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Unfortunately it currently lacks the ability to read any DRM eBook format, which severely restricts its use for reading commercial eBooks. An ADE firmware update has been promised, but we all know the dangers of buying a device on promises of what it will be able to do in the future. I'd wait for this firmware to arrive before buying, personally.
ADE with DRM is already working with Pocketbook on the last test Firmware. This can be seen even in following picture, Pocketbook 360 ° (Pocket101) is shown in the program ADE.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Screenshot++ADE.jpg
Views:	100
Size:	151.9 KB
ID:	38873  
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Old 11-11-2009, 01:58 PM   #11
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I have no reason at all to doubt it, but I'd just like to see it released before starting to recommend the PocketBook.
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Old 11-11-2009, 02:17 PM   #12
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I have no reason at all to doubt it, but I'd just like to see it released before starting to recommend the PocketBook.
the 301 and 360 are now released and shipping. The 302 is still unreleased. At least in the US

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Old 11-11-2009, 02:20 PM   #13
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the 301 and 360 are now released and shipping. The 302 is still unreleased. At least in the US

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He is talking about the firmware release that supports ADE DRM... not the device release. The firmware on the currently selling devices does not yet support the DRM.

BOb
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Old 11-11-2009, 06:13 PM   #14
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I have no reason at all to doubt it, but I'd just like to see it released before starting to recommend the PocketBook.
Hi Harry, I already have the firmware and can confirm that it works. Elsewise the reader would not have been an option for me...

cheers,

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Old 11-13-2009, 06:24 AM   #15
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One think you might want to consider if you haven't already bought. Astak is coming out with a holiday gift pack next week with a lots of stuff included. No word on the price yet, but the details are in this thread:

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=61533
Well, I'll be damned. I just ordered a couple of days ago an Astak Pocket Pro in Maroon and the Mighty Bright LED clip-on could have proved an interesting option (since I still have to buy one of those).
Though on the other hand, the device is under a 50$ saving until december, so perhaps, this Christmas gift comes a the expanse of a higher or just normal price of 250$ if it starts on december.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaas View Post
Did you think of looking at a Pocketbook 360? It is also a 5inch reader albeit for 240€. I have recently bought one and am very happy, as it is very stable (really important in an ebook for me), supports everything I could wish ( full justification, custom margin sizes, fast page forwardt, good file support, a page and time indicator, and dictionaries) and reprogrammable buttons...

The best E-ink reader I have experienced so far!

cheers,
kaas
I did take a look at the Pocketbook 360 though aside of being a bit expansiver, I wasn't very fond of the button layout. The dictionary extra was tempting, but we all know English quite well to actually miss it and, well, hehe, it too late already.
My item has left San Francisco

I wanted to order as early as possible because if I'm unlucky, customs can prove to be a nightmare in Spain and I REALLY want to have the thing by Christmas.

Thanks you all for everything, and let's hope it turns to be a worthwhile gift.
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