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Old 03-16-2009, 12:28 PM   #1
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Question Browsing the public domain eboooks on MR, which format will look/perform better?

Hey guys.

I am confused between ePub and LRF. I've read about the benefits of ePub and I understand why the ebook community supports it full force, but I'm not entirely sure which of the two formats will look better and display faster and with less formatting errors on my 505.

I was gonna download the 100 free classics from the Sony store but I've read many threads in which new users were told to get them from MR instead due to superior formatting. But most titles here are available in LRF AND ePub, so which of the two do I go for?

Are these ebooks formatted specifically for one of the three font size options? I prefer the medium font, will the formatting break if I choose it instead of the small one?

Thanks.
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:31 PM   #2
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rahulm, I think you'll be pleased with either format. In fact, why don't you download one freebie in lrf and one in ePub and compare the two?
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:34 PM   #3
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Welcome to MobileRead, rahulm.

Have you thought of downloading the same book in both formats and seeing which one you prefer?
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:35 PM   #4
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I find both - as well as Adobe Digital Editions - work equally well. You can reset the default fonts easily, because I just did it yesterday. It's in a thread called "Very detailed instructions on how to change fonts," just type it into the search box. Now, unless it is a RTF book that I formatted myself, books show up in nice clean Ariel font.

Edit: https://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=28447
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:36 PM   #5
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I've only downloaded .lrf from here and they're really good, at least the ones from HarryT are so far. The links in the Table of Content pages are very helpful.
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:37 PM   #6
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Wow, fast replies...

Yes, that is a good idea, I will try both formats and see how it is. I was playing around with the Calibre conversion options and I noticed that the ePub settings have a setting that allows me to remove spacing between paragraphs. I didn't notice this for LRF. So unless I overlooked something, that's a plus for ePub in my books.

Ok, gonna transfer some books to test it out.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:04 PM   #7
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Hi

Download both formats if they exist for the same book, make a backup of them, read in the format you like more today…
Tomorrow if you change your mind - or new firmware/new reader comes along and makes the other format more attractive - you just read in the other format.

Best regards,
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Old 03-17-2009, 01:21 AM   #8
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A couple random details that distinguish the two formats:
- only LRF will provide you with fully justified text (currently)
- epub does not require time to pre-paginate documents
- epub will likely be more portable between devices in the future (not a big deal for free books, but if you're buying one, you might want to bear it in mind)
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Old 03-17-2009, 01:33 PM   #9
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Some other differences I have noticed (specifically applies to PRS 505):

epubs have a very small auto-calculated page number in the right margin. I find this annonying.

Commericially produced epubs tend to have a blank line between paragraphs, whereas LRFs do not (they use indented paragraphs instead); I have no idea why this is so. This may be why Calibre has the option to remove blank lines between paras, but only for epubs (I believe Calibre replaces the blanks lines with an indent para).
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Old 03-17-2009, 02:28 PM   #10
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I find that accessing the Table of Contents when reading an ePub book to be unacceptably slow. I like to take a look to see how many pages the next chapter will be so I know if I have time to read it or not.

In an LRF file, I can do this easily, but when loading up an ePub TOC, it can take up to a minute or more just to load.

I also prefer the fact that LRF's have actual pages as compare to ePub that just have location numbers.

These are only personal preferences though. I think trying both formats and then deciding is the way to go.

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Old 03-17-2009, 10:09 PM   #11
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I noticed that PG is now offering the EPUB format (experimental). I haven't downloaded any, so I'm curious how well-formatted they are.

Can anybody comment on the visual appearance of the PG EPUB books?

Thanks.
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Old 03-18-2009, 01:14 AM   #12
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My ignorance embarrasses me, but what is PG?
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Old 03-18-2009, 03:50 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigma8 View Post
My ignorance embarrasses me, but what is PG?
Project Gutenberg

http://www.gutenberg.org/catalog/world/results

"Our eventual goal is to provide Public Domain Etext editions a short time after they enter the Public Domain" Free downloads of Public Domain ebooks.

Be sure to check the mobileread site first as the members here take the time to produce very nicely formatted versions for our specific readers.

Last edited by dreams; 03-18-2009 at 03:51 AM. Reason: clarified site to be mobileread
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Old 03-18-2009, 12:03 PM   #14
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So i tried many of the free sony classics and a lot were very pretty bad. I guess it was just a marketing ploy to sell the hardware.

ONE HUNDRED CLASSICS FREE WITH PURCHASE!*

*classics are poorly formatted public domain titles.

Oh well.

I used my general 25 buck credit to purchase Dune, Shogun and Empress (1$!). Those were very nicely presented so I was greatly relieved. Any suggestions for the remaining 5.64$?

Last edited by rahulm; 03-18-2009 at 12:06 PM.
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Old 03-19-2009, 11:36 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveK View Post
I noticed that PG is now offering the EPUB format (experimental). I haven't downloaded any, so I'm curious how well-formatted they are.

Can anybody comment on the visual appearance of the PG EPUB books?
Well, it's only a sample size of 1, but while the Sony ePub version of "The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde" has a nice cover picture, it has far worse body text formatting than the PG ePub version. I.e. in this case, the PG one's the one to go for.
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