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Old 12-13-2009, 04:56 PM   #1
bschase2
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Help for a 1st time ereader purchase

OK. So, I have wanted a Kindle since it was first released but found the price to steep. I have watched it on and off since, and now it has reached a price point where I am ready to dive in but...

Then I saw the info about the Nook. Then I started to look into various ereaders, and saw how many there actually were.

Now I am confused. I have read all over the web, and through many posts here. I decided to post myself and see what happens!

I think I am choosing between the Kindle and the Sony Pocket Reader. (I have seen both in action recently, and played with the Nook at B&N.) Obviously they both have stores to buy from, and Amazon seems to have more. The Sony is cheaper (esp for a teacher like me). I read mostly contemporary non-fiction and fantasy (odd combination, perhaps). Also, I have never purchased an ebook before, since I didn't have a reader.

Can both devices read other formats? I would like to read more classics, and have found them in various formats. Can I convert the formats to work on Kindle? Does Calibre do that for Amazon, or can I only read books purchased from Amazon. (Sony seems to be OK for this, if I understand correctly) I know people here enjoy both products. All information would be very helpful.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:22 PM   #2
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Well, I ordered a Kindle 2 on friday, I thought about the Sony PRS600 but I read that it has a reflective display because of the touch screen and that it is less 'sharp' when reading.

Since friday I read up on converting files to a format that can be read on the kindle.

The best format seems to be the mobi mobipocket one (for the kindle), there are three programs you'd need (there are probably more but those three work for everything) to convert lit, PDF, html, doc etc. to the mobi format.

Kindle reads html and pdf natively but the pdf seems to have problems with readability since the files are mostly made to be printed and too big to read on the kindle 2 (the dx works better but its not perfect either).

To convertlit I tried out convertlit and mobipocket creator, it seems to result in good mobi files.

The third program is Stanza which can export your ebook directly into a ereader format (I haven't used it yet).

So what I actually want to say is that you can read any ebook that doesn't have a drm on every reader if you convert them.

Protected ebooks you'd have to somehow strip of the protection (no idea how to do that).
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:41 PM   #3
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Well if you are into eReader, then the best one is the nook. But since eReader seems to be going away, the best best is actually, a Sony Reader PRS-900. I know it's a bit more $$, but it is going to be a good one.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:47 PM   #4
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bschase, I suggest that you go to a store that sells eBook readers, and compare the 5" screen to the 6". It may be that you will find the 5" to be too small, and that will affect your decision.
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:51 PM   #5
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For the Kindle you would mostly buy contemporary non-fiction and fantasy from the Kindle Store. For the Sony you can buy from the Sony Store or from the many ebook stores that sell Adobe ePub and PDF ebooks. The Kindle store has the best non-fiction selection of any ebook store by a long way. However, some older non-fiction ebooks are only available as Adobe PDF ebooks which don't work on the Kindle.

For classics, these are available in MOBI format for the Kindle and in ePub for the Sony, and in any case Calibre (has its own forum here) can convert many DRM-free (unencrypted) ebook formats to MOBI or ePub.

All ebooks are loaded via USB on the Sonys and almost all ebooks except those directly from Amazon are loaded via USB on the Kindle also.

For either one you need a cover to protect the screen (the Sony comes with a sleeve).

The lowest cost EInk Reader in the US is currently the EZ Reader Pocket Pro deal from Books on Board, for example in Black for $209 plus $10 for ebooks and 50% of the first 10 ebooks you buy. Other colors are available (look under Back to Physical Products), and they all come with a brown fake leather cover which I think is "good enough" looking and gives excellent protection. Astak has a similar bundle if you buy directly from them for $239 with money going to charity. The Pocket Pro reads the same Adobe ePub and PDF as the PRS-300 and is otherwise a comparable device with more expandability. You can buy ebooks for it from Books on Board and from the Sony ebook store and many other sites.
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
Well if you are into eReader, then the best one is the nook. But since eReader seems to be going away, the best best is actually, a Sony Reader PRS-900. I know it's a bit more $$, but it is going to be a good one.
OK... so my inexperience seems to be showing. Is an eReader something specific, and not a general term for devices such as a the Kindle, Nook, etc? And what do you mean by going away? Are they not just starting to come into their own?

(I played with a Nook at B&N but found that it was difficult and slow. The Kindle and Sony both seemed better to me.)
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:19 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by wallcraft View Post

For classics, these are available in MOBI format for the Kindle and in ePub for the Sony, and in any case Calibre (has its own forum here) can convert many DRM-free (unencrypted) ebook formats to MOBI or ePub.
So, correct me if I am wrong, but Calibre can convert basically anything to either to Sony or Kindle? Yes?

If so, then the big difference is that the anything bought for the Kindle from Amazon can only be read on a Kindle, while anything purchased from the Sony Store could be played on any reader?

Thanks
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:21 PM   #8
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So, correct me if I am wrong, but Calibre can convert basically anything to either to Sony or Kindle? Yes?
Yes, as long as it's DRM-free.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bschase2 View Post
If so, then the big difference is that the anything bought for the Kindle from Amazon can only be read on a Kindle, while anything purchased from the Sony Store could be played on any reader?

Thanks
On any reader that supports epub, so not on the kindle.
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:32 PM   #9
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On any reader that supports epub, so not on the kindle.
OK, thanks.

Also, are the books from the Sony Store DRM?
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Old 12-13-2009, 08:33 PM   #10
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Yes. Most commercial books are, unfortunately.
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Old 12-13-2009, 10:02 PM   #11
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Also, are the books from the Sony Store DRM?
Yes. However many EInk devices, with the exception of the Kindle and a few others, read DRMed Adobe ePub. Also, like MOBI DRM, the Adobe DRM is easily removable, see Adobe ADEPT DRM for EPUB circumvented.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:06 PM   #12
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Thanks for the tips everyone. One question. My wife wants me to to wait until after Christmas to see if the prices drop. I don't ever remember the Kindle going on "sale." Thoughts?
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Old 12-15-2009, 06:15 AM   #13
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I see how a $50 could push many people to the edge but I wouldn't count on it. Kindle just survived the first wave of competition and come out a winner. If the price drops after Christmas I'll be the first buying one for my father.
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Old 12-15-2009, 02:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bschase2 View Post
OK... so my inexperience seems to be showing. Is an eReader something specific, and not a general term for devices such as a the Kindle, Nook, etc? And what do you mean by going away? Are they not just starting to come into their own?
There's a specific format called "eReader", which is becoming rarer nowadays - your comments above explain the problem when someone unfortunately uses it as a general term for eBooks! :-)

eBooks are growing, although realistically, only a small proportion of books - although as long as the proportion's large enough that we can get most of the books we want as eBooks, it doesn't really matter. 'eReader' titles are, I believe, harder to find these days though!
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Old 12-15-2009, 08:47 PM   #15
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There's a specific format called "eReader", which is becoming rarer nowadays - your comments above explain the problem when someone unfortunately uses it as a general term for eBooks! :-)

eBooks are growing, although realistically, only a small proportion of books - although as long as the proportion's large enough that we can get most of the books we want as eBooks, it doesn't really matter. 'eReader' titles are, I believe, harder to find these days though!
Thanks for the clarification. Novice mistake.

I don't expect to purchase any professional books on my E-Book Device (). Purely for enjoyment reading and portability.
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