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Old 07-16-2017, 10:15 AM   #1
Albert LeRoi
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Kobo Aura H20 2nd edition or Tolino Vision 4 HD for library books?

I am about to buy my first dedicated e-reader and I would welcome your advice / opinions.

Up until now I have read my e-books on an iPhone 7 (surprisingly comfortable) and an iPad (too heavy to hold for long lying in bed).

I attach great importance to the quality of the screen and to the filtering of the blue light, since I read mostly in the evening. This has narrowed my choice to the Kobo Aura H20 2nd edition that has just been released and the Tolino Vision 4 HD. From what I can read, they are broadly similar in quality and price, apart from their screen size.

I read in another thread that the Tolino's software was not as good as that of the Kobo.

The determining factor for me is which of the two devices would be most appropriate for reading books borrowed from public libraries (in Belgium). I have read that the Kobo deforms ePub books that do not come from Kobo, increasing or decreasing the space at the top and foot of the screen. I could not find any specific information about the Tolino on this point. Can anyone enlighten me on that?

I have also read that it is possible to convert a standard ePub format to a Kobo format using Calibre, but I would prefer if possible not to have to use Calibre every time I borrow a book.

Thanks in advance for your contributions!
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:32 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Albert LeRoi View Post
The determining factor for me is which of the two devices would be most appropriate for reading books borrowed from public libraries (in Belgium). I have read that the Kobo deforms ePub books that do not come from Kobo, increasing or decreasing the space at the top and foot of the screen.
I have no idea where you get that from. The Kobo ereaders display epubs as they are coded. There are a couple of bugs, but, in general, if you see weird things, it's because the person who created the book did it that way.
[/QUOTE]
I have also read that it is possible to convert a standard ePub format to a Kobo format using Calibre, but I would prefer if possible not to have to use Calibre every time I borrow a book.
[/QUOTE]

Strictly, you can't use calibre with borrowed epub. They have DRM and the creator of the DRM stripping tools discourages their use on library books. That means you would need to use ADE to get the book onto the device. The alternative
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:45 AM   #3
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You don't have to use Calibre to convert from ePub to kepub. ePub works very well on the H2O2. In most cases, ePub works better (IMHO).
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Old 07-16-2017, 11:31 AM   #4
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...

Strictly, you can't use calibre with borrowed epub. They have DRM and the creator of the DRM stripping tools discourages their use on library books. That means you would need to use ADE to get the book onto the device. The alternative
Just in case ...

Calibre and the deDRM tools work fine on Overdrive books.

Last edited by John F; 07-16-2017 at 11:33 AM.
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Old 07-16-2017, 01:59 PM   #5
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Being an owner of the older H2O and a Tolino 3, I do feel the Kobo firmware gives more fine tuning options for font/spacing. That said, when reading epubs the Kobo only shows page number against total pages, whereas the Tolino will also tell you pages left in the chapter (a small, but nice feature).

Kobos do not mess up Epubs in my experience, but add extra header/footer space on Kepubs. Perhaps that is what you were thinking of?

Both work with ADE for borrowing purposes.

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Old 07-16-2017, 02:04 PM   #6
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A further thought - I have found the Tolino browser to be better than the one on my Kobo.
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Old 07-16-2017, 02:44 PM   #7
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Thank you all very much for your rapid and helpful replies!

I'm relieved to hear that the Kobo does not mess up ePub books. That was my main concern, since I will use it mostly to read books borrowed from libraries. The question was raised in an otherwise very positive review in this excellent French-language blog dedicated to e-readers: http://aldus2006.typepad.fr/mon_weblog/kobo/

The reference to Calibre was just a minor point and need not bother you any further if the Kobo machine handles ePub books well.

At this point in time I think I will buy the Kobo rather than the Tolino. On the German Amazon site the user reviews of the Tolino are rather mixed - 6 out of 23 users are dissatisfied, whereas on the website of FNAC, the distributor of the Kobo in France, the user reviews are very positive - out of 455 users only 15 give it 1 or 2 stars.

One other point: dictionaries. I notice that the Kobo manual warns that the dictionaries may not function with books borrowed from libraries. Have any of you any experience in this regards? Perhaps I should start a new thread in a different section?

Thanks again for your help!
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Old 07-16-2017, 02:48 PM   #8
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A further thought - I have found the Tolino browser to be better than the one on my Kobo.
And the browser on my iPhone 6s is better than that on either Reader.
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:33 PM   #9
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Thank you all very much for your rapid and helpful replies!

I'm relieved to hear that the Kobo does not mess up ePub books. That was my main concern, since I will use it mostly to read books borrowed from libraries. The question was raised in an otherwise very positive review in this excellent French-language blog dedicated to e-readers: http://aldus2006.typepad.fr/mon_weblog/kobo/
A quick read of the Google translated version, the paragraph that mentions space at the bottom of the screen is referring to widows and orphans. This is a CSS setting that specifies what to do if a paragraph goes over a page. It set the number of lines in the paragraph that can be left at the bottom of the page (widows) and the number that must be on the next page (orphans). This means the bottom of the screen isn't always filled. The CSS specs say the default is 2, and Kobo uses this for epubs. Unfortunately, as the widows and orphans are rarely specified in epubs, that means you get the changing space at the end of the page.

Kepubs do not support widows and orphans in CSS. They are ignored and the renderer effectively uses 1.
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One other point: dictionaries. I notice that the Kobo manual warns that the dictionaries may not function with books borrowed from libraries. Have any of you any experience in this regards? Perhaps I should start a new thread in a different section?
The dictionaries work in epubs and kepubs no matter what the source. They don't work in PDF or anything that is actually an image. The "may not" is probably Kobo being cautious as I'm sure there PDFs in the available for borrowing.
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Old 07-17-2017, 03:49 AM   #10
Albert LeRoi
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Thank you very much David for your reassurance about the dictionaries and the way the Kobo Aura handles ePub books! In the light of your explanations I feel confident now to buy the H20 Second Edition.

The dictionaries are very important for me because I will be reading books in different languages and need to be able to translate easily words I don't understand.

I will pass on to the author of the French blog your explanation about the orphans and widows. I'm sure he too will appreciate your input.

In conclusion, may I thank you and the other contributors for your rapid, authoritative and very helpful comments! I realise that you did this during your weekend, when you could have been relaxing or pursuing your own interests, and I appreciate your help all the more. Thank you!

You may now consider this query as solved.
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Old 07-17-2017, 04:22 AM   #11
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What I do with widows and orphans is I edit the eBook's body CSS style to make sure windows and orphans areboth set to 1.

Code:
body {
widows: 1;
orphans: 1;
margin-top: 0;
margin-bottom: 0;
margin-left: 0;
margin-right: 0;
text-align: justify;
}
That's what I usually use unless there's a reason for different coding like font-family.

Last edited by JSWolf; 07-17-2017 at 04:24 AM.
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Old 07-17-2017, 12:24 PM   #12
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I will pass on to the author of the French blog your explanation about the orphans and widows. I'm sure he too will appreciate your input.
One quick fix to the widows/orphans issue is in GeoffR's patches for the Kobo firmware. One patch which was originally intended to correct a bug in Adobe's code which generated odd page breaks with long paragraphs -- that bug has fixed for a while now -- is still useful since it effectively forces widows and orphans to 1.

See Instructions for patching firmware 4.4.9344 and 4.4.9349 in the Kobo Developer's Corner subforum for the current firmware release.
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Old 07-17-2017, 05:52 PM   #13
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Clarification for non-Kobo user (but interested...): For Overdrive books on Kobo, are the books in epub or kepub format? If they are from the Kobo store, I assumed they would be in kepub?
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Old 07-17-2017, 07:38 PM   #14
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Yes book borrowed from Overdrive and downloaded to the device from the Kobo store will be kepubs. But, you can still download the epub version through ADE if you need to.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:03 PM   #15
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Ah, okay, that explains why it was confusing on whether it was epub or kepub...it's both.
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