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Old 02-18-2019, 11:08 AM   #1
Turboweevel
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Question E-reader for knitting patterns

Hi everyone,

I hope you folks can help me with a particular need of mine.

I'm a knitter. I sometimes knit on the train, sometimes at home, sometimes with friends, so I need a good way to take patterns with me, because sometimes they can get quite complex. Patterns usually come as PDFs, or the occasional blog post that I print to a PDF.

I've been using a Kindle Voyage to read regular books on, and to store and display my knitting patterns, but I've come across a problem: the bloody screensaver.

Here I am, 42 stitches into a row, when the thing decides to stop displaying the book and goes to the screensaver instead. Now I have to drop everything, hope I don't lose track of where I was, and turn the thing back on. Ugh.

I know about the screensaver disabling hack, but that's just awkward and eats my battery.

So, having discovered this here website, I thought I'd turn to you guys to find the right thing for my needs.

I know there are readers that run android, so I'd prefer that. The reason is so I can also use knitting companion apps that have things like row counters, places to add notes, etc.

I buy my books mostly on Amazon, so good performance with those is also important. I still want to read!

As for screen size, something on the smaller side is probably better.

I don't think whispersync compatibility would be possible though, would it?

If it helps, I'm located in NYC.

Thank you so much for your help!
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Old 02-18-2019, 01:10 PM   #2
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You are of course going to have the same issue with any device that is permanently on. Battery consumption should be minimal, though, on an eInk device with the front light off or set to its minimal setting.
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Old 02-18-2019, 02:31 PM   #3
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You are of course going to have the same issue with any device that is permanently on. Battery consumption should be minimal, though, on an eInk device with the front light off or set to its minimal setting.
Oh yeah, it's just that disabling the screensaver in a Kindle disables the sleeping function in general, as I found out today.

Even closing the cover won't put it to sleep, and it ran itself dry!

So while it should have been sitting there sleeping with the cover on, it just kept running and maintaining the wifi connection, etc, which isn't great.
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Old 02-18-2019, 02:54 PM   #4
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Yes, if you disable the screensaver, you need to press the power button to put it to sleep.
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Old 02-18-2019, 04:02 PM   #5
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Jail broken kindles with KUAL installed can use the sleep disable/enable KUAL extension.
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Old 02-19-2019, 07:12 AM   #6
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Likely only the Sony eink gadgets that only do PDFs are suitable. Intended for drawing offices and about twice the price of a laptop.
More plausible is any 10"+ Android tablet. Ipads and top of range Lenovo or Samsung are very overpriced. Also Apple products are a kind of walled garden and very inflexible.
Patterns are almost all PDFs and Letter or A4 size. No real eReader is going to be suitable.

Last edited by FrustratedReader; 02-19-2019 at 07:14 AM.
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Old 02-19-2019, 08:42 AM   #7
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Also Apple products are a kind of walled garden and very inflexible.
On the contrary; iPad apps tend to be absolutely excellent. I do most of my "real computing" on my iPad.
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Old 02-19-2019, 09:09 AM   #8
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Also Apple products are a kind of walled garden and very inflexible.
I've never understood this incorrect mindset. I can do 99% of my computing needs on my iPad Pro. Inflexible isn't close to being correct.
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Old 02-19-2019, 09:14 AM   #9
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I've never understood this incorrect mindset. I can do 99% of my computing needs on my iPad Pro. Inflexible isn't close to being correct.
I can only assume it comes from never having used an iPad. As you say, it's completely erroneous.
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Old 02-19-2019, 01:15 PM   #10
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Try installing SW not approved by Apple, or using it without iTunes or Apple Cloud.
Only Serious Apple fans think Apple gear is good value and flexible in the way alternates are.
I've used various Apple products, Windows & Linux and till recently did IT support.
I certainly couldn't do 99% of my computing needs on ANY Tablet (iOS, Android, Win10 or Linux).

My comment was purely in the context of someone wanting knitting patterns. Crochet & Cross-stitch are also usually PDF.
Actually in many cases colour is required, so really a 10" or larger tablet with decent resolution is needed. Some seemingly cheap ones are not even HD. So check resolution. Ideally it should be either 64G Flash, or 16G Flash (32G better) and an SD card slot. If there isn't enough internal Flash there is a problem then with OS upgrades.
An iOS (iPAd) is better than Win10 x86 tablet and a Windows ARM tablet is pointless. Putting Linux on a tablet is a bit specialised. So basically the choice is Android or iPad. It's certainly trickier to choose a decent value Android tablet. While the iPad really needs iTunes and Internet, at least with new one you know what it is, even though it's more expensive and less flexible than Android, Linux or Win10 models with an SD card slot, They all can use 3rd party apps and simply appear as mass storage on a PC/Laptop without any special software installed. Though I'd take an iPad rather than win10 any day.
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Old 02-19-2019, 01:55 PM   #11
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My Pocketbook 901 had settings to allow you to use the last page you were reading as the power off screen and also use it as the boot screen. It just put a lock icon in the corner of the screen to show it was powered off. It sounds like that is what you're looking for but sorry, I don't know if the new Pocketbook e-ink models still have this capability.
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:20 PM   #12
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As a knitter myself, sorry to say but it doesn't work. Just print out the pattern and take that with you. If all you need is the occasional reminder, like a well used heel pattern, then it works fine to copy and paste into a text file and then convert to mobi or azw3. Otherwise, you not only burn through the battery, but your ereader is likely to drop to the floor.

Yes, currently have a couple sock and sweater patterns on my take-along-kindle, but again, they are there just as a reminder in case I get stuck away from home. Nothing is more irritating than to be sitting at a 3 hour appointment and my brain can't remember how much I was supposed to increase after the yoke. Doesn't work for following a pattern otherwise.
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Old 02-19-2019, 03:05 PM   #13
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Yes. the knitter here does most of the use of the networked Duplex Colour Laser printer / scanner.
It's a Brother and cheaper than any iPad or big ereader.
MUCH cheaper to run than an inkjet, faster and reliable.
She reads books on a kindle. Doesn't bother even with laptop for patterns except to buy or download.
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Old 02-19-2019, 03:40 PM   #14
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I can only assume it comes from never having used an iPad. As you say, it's completely erroneous.
I owned an ipad (2017) with 128 gig memory. The ipad is a closed system the is sandboxed. Got rid of the ipad in less than 6 months because of I found ios was unusable for me & I just wanted to use the "best tablet" (according to reviewers) for reading & manage the files on the ipad. I do not use a cloud for storing books nor anything else "except" for the auto "backups" by the tablet.

The ipad "files" is only for managing files on the cloud; was not able to use the ios file management. Bought the "files ex" & was much able to use for real file management on the ipad. Downloaded the ios 11 manual from apple & read part of it; moved the epub book to a directory created with 'file ex' for books; ios claims the file is an "unrecognizable format" & will not let me read it with either the native reader or fbr or marvin. Moved the ios 11 manual back to where it was downloaded from apple, the book is now has a format recognizable & was able to read the ios 11 manual.

Loaded Calibre Companion onto the ipad. Found that selecting a book to read, CC for ios has to send a copy to whatever reader I want to use for reading; duplicating the books. ios does not allow just sending the path to the reader for the location of the book. Unfortunately, CC for android will be required to do the same by Google Play store before any more updates to CC can be made available on Play Store.

I didn't do programming on the ipad; just trying to read books is enough of a very bad experience. ios is totally unflexible & wants to have everything on the icloud (a big money maker for apple). The ipad is more like using a terminal connected to a mainframe (icloud).
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Old 02-19-2019, 03:41 PM   #15
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As someone in frequent proximity to a knitter, same answer here.
A printed off pattern in a waterproof file insert can be stuffed into a project bag and add no weight, and be pulled out and referred to in almost any situation.
Also easy to take out of the insert and write notes/corrections on.
A tablet would add a lot of weight, and be much more cumbersome to use.
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