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Old 12-19-2009, 01:20 AM   #1
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Question How to tell between the formats?


I know the answer is here somewhere but I can't figure out how to find it. As the title says, how can I tell what type of file the Kindle book will be BEFORE I buy it. Now that K4PC PID has been found, I can now strip the book and convert to read on my Sony.
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Old 12-19-2009, 10:36 AM   #2
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In my experience a TOPAZ ebook never includes its filesize under Product Details.

If you want to be certain, download the sample to K4PC and look in My Documents\My Kindle Content. All ebooks have the extension .prc, and you may need to sort by Date to identify the new ebook (or look for the ASIN), but if you open the ebook file with a text editor it will start with TPZ0

If you want an example, try B001ELJQJU (just search for this at Amazon) which is the TOPAZ of The Princess Bride by William Goldman.
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:39 PM   #3
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Could someone give me the name of a free text editor, so I can use it to check out the files? Thanks in advance.
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Old 12-19-2009, 06:48 PM   #4
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Could someone give me the name of a free text editor
Notepad, which comes with Windows, works. When I right click on a .prc file it is one of the options that comes up (or you can "choose program"). It is also under Accessories.
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Old 12-19-2009, 07:56 PM   #5
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Unfortunately, this didn't work. The samples didn't have tpz0 at the start, only symbols (some in Chinese), so I bought the book. Checked them through notepad and they were topaz files. DAMN! Now I have three books that I can't read except through my PC. Does anyone think I can return them and get a refund?
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:05 PM   #6
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There is another way to check to see if a book is Topaz.

Edit: You need to download the sample to your computer while on the book's "buy page". The download dialog box will tell you if it is a Topaz book.
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Last edited by daffy4u; 12-19-2009 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:25 PM   #7
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I use Internet Explorer and there is no dialog box for my downloads. I also got a file size, so that route mention on the thread you linked to, doesn't work. Thank you, though. I'll just have to be more careful and pray that Topaz is broken soon.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
You need to download the sample to your computer while on the book's "buy page".
Can you download a sample to computer if you don't own a Kindle? If so, I agree this is best, and you don't even need to download it.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeccaAnn View Post
The samples didn't have tpz0 at the start, only symbols (some in Chinese), so I bought the book. Checked them through notepad and they were topaz files. DAMN! Now I have three books that I can't read except through my PC. Does anyone think I can return them and get a refund?
Which books (which ASIN's) did you buy?

Generally you can return ebooks if you request this soon after you buy. A good reason, if Amazon asks, is that you don't like the formatting (which is often sub-par on TOPAZ ebooks).
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:30 PM   #10
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I have Kindle for the PC which I hope would get me the Amazon books I wanted (the ones not available anywhere else). I can get samples but some of the samples don't start off with tpz0 or mobi. The three books I bought were just gibberish but other samples did tell. I guess I was just unlucky. Thanks for your help, wallcraft.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:38 PM   #11
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The file extension is usually .tpz or .azw1 for Topaz books and samples, and .azw for regular Amazon books.

.prc is the older file extension, not used much any more for Mobipocket format books. .mobi is used often for non-DRM books, but not by Amazon, that I have ever seen, anyway.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susan_cassidy View Post
The file extension is usually .tpz or .azw1 for Topaz books and samples, and .azw for regular Amazon books.

.prc is the older file extension, not used much any more for Mobipocket format books. .mobi is used often for non-DRM books, but not by Amazon, that I have ever seen, anyway.
Everything I have downloaded from Amazon is a prc file. My operating system is Windows Vista, if that makes any difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wallcraft
Which books (which ASIN's) did you buy?
I renamed the files but the books are: "A Rumor of Bones", "Questionable Remains" and "Dressed to Die" by Beverly Connor. Another sample I just checked is "Cockatiels at Seven" by Donna Andrews, this turned up gibberish and no info on whether it is mobi or topaz.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:55 PM   #13
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.prc is the older file extension, not used much any more for Mobipocket format books.
Amazon is using .prc for all its ebooks on the iPhone (TOPAZ and AZW), and also all the ebooks it downloads to your PC via Kindle for PC.
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Old 12-19-2009, 08:55 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Can you download a sample to computer if you don't own a Kindle? If so, I agree this is best, and you don't even need to download it.
You do need a Kindle to see the dialog box in the picture I posted. I did notice that if you download a Topaz sample to Kindle for PC it will NOT open in MobiPocket Reader but regular .azw/.mobi samples will (at least not on the sample I tried).
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Old 12-19-2009, 09:09 PM   #15
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Download the sample and open it in a Hex Editor, there you can see the Topaz or Mobi at the top right. You can also look at the file, size. If the sample has several 100 kb then it is most likely Topaz, Mobi files are much smaller. I don't think Topaz will be broken, because none of our favorite hackers seems to be interested in doing it.
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