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Old 08-18-2010, 01:33 PM   #1
WmGoat
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on the fence - suggestions?

Boy, purchasing an ereader is harder than buying a car.

Im leaning towards the Sony 600 because Im an avid public library user, and both sony and nook have capabilities to download library books. Ipads and Kindles dont have this ability. Why pay for a book if you can get it free?

I want to be able to read outside, in bright or direct sunlight. User opinion: does the 600 actually allow this? I know from my previous experiences in using an LCD screen on a motorcycle (GPS) that its almost impossible to read in those conditions. Kindle 3 makes a big deal out of their ability to read their unit in direct sunlight.

I really dont need wifi capabilities, Im absolutely OK with connecting any ereader to my PC to sync a book to it. Actually, I have a smart phone (Sprint Evo) and I barely use it for anything except as a phone or calendar tool. Very seldom do I even connect using a browser. I would probably not subscribe to any news magazine or news paper/service because of the cost, especially since I still get a daily newspaper at home and TV news is available on news channels and radio all day; CNN and the major networks have free web pages too.

I just saw in the forum that there is something called a Kobo e reader. Seems pretty basic, and it might fit the bill too, but only place Ive found to buy it is on ebay, and thats not a good sign to me. Is this product a viable player as a tool to meet my needs?

Now Im reading in the forum that Sony is coming out with a new model later this year, a 650. Knowing my intent and user needs, should I wait till October, or jump in now? It really would be nice to have one by mid October, but I can wait if its absolutely necessary and beneficial for me to do so (i.e. features, capabilities, etc).

Opinions please?

Last edited by WmGoat; 08-18-2010 at 01:37 PM. Reason: added kobo paragraph
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Old 08-18-2010, 03:31 PM   #2
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I've never tried myself, but I understand that the Sony Reader does work well in direct sunlight. Be aware however that some people have reported fading when the reader was exposed to direct sunlight. I've got no idea how prevalent that is or exactly what was done. I do most of my reading indoors anyway.

Kobo is a Canadian company who used to be owned by one of the big publishers. They were spun off and are now part owned by Borders Bookstores. The Kobo reader can be purchased from Borders and I think a few other places have advertised it for as little as $128. I know Borders had it for $149 with a $20 gift card. The reviewers gave it mixed reviews saying it was okay, but nothing special.

Be aware as well that the PRS 600 has the glare issue (i.e. it has a touch screen which causes glare.) Most people who keep them just get used to it and move the thing slightly to avoid the glare. That's what I've done. Others however, it drives them crazy and they can't stand it.

Regarding newspapers and the like, if you are interested in the text and not the pictures, you should check out Calibre (you should look anyway since it's a great piece of software for managing your library, but that's not my reason for mentioning it here). It can assemble a newspaper for you from hundreds of different sources all over the Internet. And it's all free. Though if you care to donate to the creator, I'm sure he won't mind.

Two other things: regarding waiting until October, the rumors are so far just rumors. Nothing has been confirmed as yet. Therefore, no one knows for certain what new features the new readers will have. And technically, no one knows for certain that they are even coming, though it does seem likely. However I can tell you that both the PRS 300 and the PRS 600 are on sale right now. You can save $20 on the 600 if you choose to buy now (had I waited a few weeks, I could have also, not that I had any way of knowing).

Also, I have no idea of the size of library you plan to use and for most people, this seems to be a non issue. However, if you're like me and have crazy notions of keeping your entire library at your fingertips, be aware that the Sony Reader has a weird design flaw. If you go over around 300-500 books, the time it takes to restart after you unplug it from the USB connection increases exponentially. It takes my reader well over an hour after I unplug it since I have over 3,100 books. Fortunately, I happen to have a PSP which uses the same charger and when I charge with the charger, it can simply sit in standby mode meaning you can just restart it in a second. However the reader itself does not come with the charger and buying the charger separately is an added expense. Again, this is a non issue if you don't plan to have more than few hundred books on your reader at any given time, but I wish I had known about the issue before I bought my reader. I find it extremely annoying, but I'm learning to live with it.

Finally, you may have better luck posting in the which one should I buy section since there is more info there.

Eric
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Old 08-20-2010, 12:36 AM   #3
StephieKC
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WmGoat - I was in the same position as you. The Kindle was a no-starter because of the library issue and it came down to the Sony PRS600 or the the Nook. I was leaning toward the Nook, but every time I played with it in the store, it just seemed buggy and frustrating. So I went with the Sony Touch and have been happy with my decision. Yes, the glare is an issue, but I purchased a Lexerd screen protector and that has helped with the glare, but hasn't gotten rid of it. I just move the reader to get rid of the glare. The glare is like the glare you get off a glossy magazine or book. Before I put a SD card in it, I found the Sony to be quick and responsive. Then I put a 8g SD card in and that has been a little slow to initialize at start-up, but I think that's because I put in too big a card and the read speed of the card itself. My personal drawback has been the double-tap for the dictionary. I have trouble getting this to work. I had surgery on one of hands a few years back and I difficulty telling how hard or light I press something. I haven't read anyone else complain of this, so I'm guessing it's strictly my problem. I can't comment on the screen fade in the sun. It's been too hot where I live. So if I would have problems I wouldn't be able to tell whether it's the sun or the heat.
A few drawbacks are the accessories ( or lack of accessories) that come with it. But I purchased a case that my choosing, M-Edge flip-case, so I could prop it up on it's own and it's more comfortable in my hands. Also the charger. But I will deal with it down the road. Another drawback is the cost of books in the Sony Store and other independent store on the web. They just aren't competitive with Amazon or Barnes&Noble. For me this is sometimes a problem, but to tell the truth I really don't want to purchase any books that I would only read once. Plus, e-books in my opinion are extremely over priced.
Yes, you probably should have gone over to the other section in the forum, but when I read through it, there were a lot of Sony bashers. So I'm not sure how unbiased the advice would be.
I have had my Sony PRS-600 for 2 weeks now and I am very happy with it and pleased with my choice.
I hope this helps you out a little bit. I do understand how purchasing a e-book reader makes you feel like you're jumping through hoops. It's mind bogling.
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Old 08-20-2010, 01:17 AM   #4
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I would suggest checking out kobobooks.com. I've found their prices to be quite attractive. They are also one of the few ebook stores that still regularly offer coupons. In addition, they allow you to read your books in multiple places: in your webbrowser, in their mobile app (which is available for Blackberry, iPhone, and Android), and in their PC app, which is available for Windows and Ubuntu Linux (they earned some good will from me for that last). Most of the books available can be downloaded via Adobe Digital Editions (or Sony Ebook Library) in ePub format for use on your Sony Reader.
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Old 08-20-2010, 03:22 AM   #5
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I've had my Sony PRS600 since April and I just love it. Granted, there is the glare issue with the screen, but it's just a matter of changing the angle of the thing a bit to eliminate that. Have read reports about the screen fading in direct sunlight, but at least on my machine, direct sunlight is probably the best of all for contrast and readability.

Like StephieKC, I got an MEdge cover with their little reading light, which compensates just fine in low-light situations.

And like you, I have no problem connecting the reader to my PC - for downloading reading material as well as for charging. So far, I'm finding that using Calibre to download a couple of newspaper sites I follow (a couple of times a week, anyhow) is more than enough to top up the charge without the need for any prolonged charging and no real need for a dedicated charger. I deliberately chose a model without wireless, for a variety of reasons, but primary among them is not wanting to be distracted while reading - by e-mail, games, surfing or whatever else. (OK, there's also the whole geographic restriction thing - which I kind of overestimated.) Like you, I have a "3G" phone, but find the Internet side of it more or less useless.
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:07 AM   #6
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Any Vizplex based eink reader that fades in direct sunlight has a defective screen and should be exchanged for a non-defective unit with a screen that does not fade in direct sunlight. A Vizplex screen should not fade in direct sunlight.
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Old 08-22-2010, 04:30 PM   #7
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From what I've read from those who check out library books there are a couple of big caveats:
  1. Very few books in digital formats at most libraries
  2. A long waiting list for each book. They only have a certain number of digital rights per book and thus can only check out that number.
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Old 08-22-2010, 04:44 PM   #8
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I disagree with Jack's comment about libraries. At mine in Minnesota, there are over 1000 books, but most are very popular reads and I hardly ever have to wait. I've read over 30 books so I've already saved the cost of about two readers.
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Old 01-26-2011, 03:15 PM   #9
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I have a Xubuntu laptop, a mac and an iphone and am getting a prs-600 so I'm most grateful for this top-tip.
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