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Old 12-06-2009, 01:07 AM   #1
weeziepepper
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Questions about Astak Pocket Pro

Hello.
Right now I have the ebookwise 1150 and want to get a new ereader. I don't need any fancy things like wifi.

I want a reader that will accept MS Reader (lit) format and isn't too expensive. I like all the things I've read about the Pocket Pro but have several questions.

Will PPro read lit files even if they are in DRM format? I have lots of ebooks in MS Reader on my computer but I can't tell if they are DRM protected. If PPro can't read DRM lit files is it easy to convert to a format that will work? Also does anyone know how I can tell if my MS Reader files are DRM protected or not?

What are the best formats to use on the PPro? I normally buy fiction and romance books from places like Books On Board, Fictionwise, All Romance Ebooks, etc. I want to make sure the PPro will accept formats that I can buy at those stores.

How many ebooks will fit on the internal memory on the PPro? 100? More than 100?

I have a PNY brand 2gb SD card with a micro card adapter. It shows it is for music, videos, games, pictures (it says "cell phone "memory") - but nothing about files like ebooks. Does anyone know if it will work as the SD card on the PPro?

What does "user replaceable battery" mean? Will I have to buy expensive batteries frequently or will the battery that comes with the reader last a long time?

Does the PPro have a backlight so I can read in the dark (like I can with my ebookwise)?

Thanks for all your help. Also please let me know if there are any other suggestions for ereaders that will do what I want and aren't very expensive.

Weezie
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Old 12-06-2009, 01:34 AM   #2
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Hi and welcome!

I can't answer all your questions but will answer the ones I can. The PP does not read LIT files very well at all. I know it says it can read them but in my experience (and many others on here) it cannot. They are hoping to fix this problem in a firmware update but who knows when/if it will happen. However, I have found no problems with it reading PDF, Epub, Mobi, RTF and TXT. Most books you buy online you can get in Epub, Mobi or PDF format. So you'd be fine with buying books online to read on a Pocket Pro.

The PP does not have a back light. I think the eBookwise is one of the only readers that actually has this feature because it has an LCD screen whereas the Pocket Pro incorporates Eink technology for the screen as most readers do now. And it is a fantastic technology.

Can't help with the other question but I'm sure others here will be able to!
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Old 12-06-2009, 01:47 AM   #3
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If you had to initially download your LIT ebooks with Internet Explorer, then they probably have DRM. There are no EInk devices or dedicated Readers that support DRMed LIT ebooks. The EZ Reader can read DRM-free LIT ebooks, but its support for LIT is not as good as some other formats (FB2, MOBI and ePub). I suggest using Calibre to convert them to ePub (you could then obviously use other EInk Readers, but the EZ Reader Pocket Pro is still a good choice). It is relatively easy to strip LIT DRM, look for "ConvertLIT GUI".

Like most EInk Readers today, the Pocket Pro supports Adobe PDF and ePub ebooks with DRM. Adobe PDF ebooks are sometimes called Adobe Digital Editions ebooks, because ADE is the program that reads Adobe ebooks.

The ebookwise 1150 has relatively little memory, so you should be happy with the Pocket Pro. You can store perhaps 1,000 ebooks in internal memory, and SD cards can hold many more. Your SD card should work fine, and SD cards are very inexpensive.

The original battery should last a long time. User replaceable just means that you don't need to ship it back to the factory to replace the battery.

EInk is like paper, in that it uses incident light to display the text. So there is no backlight, and you will need a clip on light to read in the dark.
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Old 12-06-2009, 02:05 AM   #4
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Thanks for responding Laura and Wallcraft.

I do have ConvertLit GUI on my computer but have never tried to remove the DRM protection on my lit files. I have purchased all the ebooks through Internet Explorer so they are probably all DRM protected.

It sounds like it may not be too difficult to switch my current ebooks to ePub or maybe pdf. Seems like I would have been better off these last couple years NOT buying MS Reader ebooks - oh well! Live and learn.
Thanks.
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:09 AM   #5
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I wanted to add some comments based on what has confused me in my research of ereaders (not that it confuses you).

The Pocket Pro is capable of reading (among others) prc and pdb (mobi and eReader respectively) however NOT DRMd books. If you have books in those formats that do not have DRM then it will read them just fine. I'm pointing this out because you indicate you purchase your books and I know at least 2 of the sites you mentioned definitely use DRM. There are ways to "liberate" these formats so if you are comfortable doing that, then the Pocket Pro is a good choice from that perspective.

My library has 0 lit files so I guess I'm lucky in that regard. I have purchased Mobi and eReader exclusively over the last several years.

Robertb did mention that the original vision for the Pocket Pro was to have eReader DRM capability, but with Barnes & Noble having stepped into the equation this didn't happen in the time frame they had hoped and there's no telling if it will ever happen. It would definitely be a nice to have but I wouldn't purchase this reader if you would be doing so in the hopes of DRM eReader support.

I've already successfully borrowed 4 books from my local library. This was my biggest selling point. I wanted an eReader that could borrow books from the library so I wasn't having to purchase all my material. I think there are several readers on the market now that have ePub/PDF support, but the fact that Pocket Pro also has support for mobi and eReader was the deciding factor for me. My Pocket Pro arrived yesterday and as of this morning I have my entire library on it. I can't wait to get immersed in a book!

So far I'm very pleased with the Pocket Pro for my first reader. Also there is a gift basket promotion right now that includes a clip on light for night time reading, Starbucks coffee, Starbucks mints, a 50% off coupon at Books on Board for your first 10 eBooks purchased...oh and an SD card with 400 books loaded on it. So a couple of the questions you had would be taken care of with this gift basket (night reading and SD card).

Good luck with your decision.
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weeziepepper
I have a PNY brand 2gb SD card with a micro card adapter. It shows it is for music, videos, games, pictures (it says "cell phone "memory") - but nothing about files like ebooks. Does anyone know if it will work as the SD card on the PPro?
An SD card is an SD card. They can handle any type of digital file. The "cell phone memory" and "music, videos, games..." is just marketing material they put on the box.

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Originally Posted by French
The Pocket Pro is capable of reading (among others) prc and pdb (mobi and eReader respectively)...
The PP does not support eReder files. It supports certain types of PDB files. PDB is a container format (think zip file) which can store a number of different ebook formats inside of it.
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:35 AM   #7
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An SD card is an SD card. They can handle any type of digital file. The "cell phone memory" and "music, videos, games..." is just marketing material they put on the box.



The PP does not support eReder files. It supports certain types of PDB files. PDB is a container format (think zip file) which can store a number of different ebook formats inside of it.
Thanks for clarifying that...see, even when I think I know something I don't! I find the different formats, file extensions, DRM and non DRM versions, to be extremely confusing!!
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:49 AM   #8
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I'm glad my current SD card will work. I bought it originally to download pics and music to my cell phone but I don't even use it. I've had the same ring tone and wallpaper on my phone for a whole year! lol

Can I ask another question?
My local library offers ebooks in Adobe PDF format under Adobe Digital Editions. So I guess I would just add the ADE program, then download from the library and put on the reader (if I buy the Astak). Is the ADE program easy to use?

I thought about buying the Carol Basket but on the checkout page it stated I would not be able to return any parts of the basket because it's a package deal with proceeds going to charity. I want to be able to return the reader if I don't like it (I think the normal return time is 14 days?).
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Old 12-06-2009, 11:58 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by weeziepepper View Post
My local library offers ebooks in Adobe PDF format under Adobe Digital Editions. So I guess I would just add the ADE program, then download from the library and put on the reader (if I buy the Astak). Is the ADE program easy to use?
ADE is very easy to use. The process is: Install ADE. It will ask to either create an account or just authorize the computer. I recommend creating an account that way you can move your books to different computers which is very useful if you get a new one. You will then authorize the reader. Download the book from the library. The download will be a special file that ADE will use to get and register the book. Then you just transfer the file to your reader.
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Old 12-06-2009, 12:01 PM   #10
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Is the ADE program easy to use?
Yes. See Books on Board's EZ Reader help for detailed instructions.
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Old 12-07-2009, 01:09 AM   #11
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Welcome to the forum Weeziepepper!
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Old 12-07-2009, 05:34 PM   #12
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Thanks for the welcome Javed.
Everyone has been very helpful and I appreciate it. I will probably buy the Pocket Pro in the maroon/red color. I just have to make sure I don't spend money that should go towards Christmas gifts.
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