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Old 05-14-2009, 10:30 PM   #1
Ham88
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Thumbs up My Ectaco Jetbook experiences

I love my new jetbook, so this is probably a heavily biased insight into its functions, but anyway. It has great choices of font size (12 to 32). It has three different ways of turning pages, which allow it to be held in varied ways one hands, two hands, no hands! (well not really. The only real problem I came across was updating the firmware as the directions on the 'official' website didn't work and on the ectaco forums there were a different set of directions posted by one of their employees that did work, I thought that was a little sketchy.

It comes with a selection of books on there already. The tagging of author and title are in the format of the file name (authorfirst_authorlast#Title) which I think is handy, except this convention only applies to .txt files. Its abiliy to display pdf files is a little bit disappointing, but if you really need to look at pdfs you'll be able to get by. The battery life isn't really the greatest, I only managed to get two books in before the reader began to warn me that my battery would die if I didn't recharge it now, but I think that is more the simplistic battery meter than the actual battery.

I absolutely love the display, far superior to eink in my opinion, at least better than the screen on the prs-500. The actual interface is really easy as you can use the numbers on he right side to select things on the screen, in addition to text input, which is a little bit iffy. The reader comes with one of those foam cases which I like as with it on the jetbook can still fit in my pocket which means that I don't have to carry my man purse around with me all the time. By pocket I mean my jeans pocket, which is simply amazing.

I'm sorry if this post was terribly unorganized and long but I wan to impress upon you how much I like my Jetbook!

One more thing, it doesn't support DRM which means some people will hate it.
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Old 05-14-2009, 11:08 PM   #2
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I'm so glad that you like your Jetbook. It would be very sad to spend money on a reader and then find that you didn't like it.

Someone posted a message a week or so ago saying that the Jetbook was being updated to support books encoded with ePub, Mobipocket, PRC and RTF formats. So, I wandered over to my local Fry's electronics store to check it out. Other than the fact that you can't buy any current-release books for the Jetbook (because it doesn't support DRM and the stores/publishers insist on using it), it looks like a nice device. I'm such a gadget junkie that I had to really work hard to keep my credit card in my purse!

Congratulations for your choice. And, if you're not intimidated by the utilities that allow you to do format shifting, you can probably purchase any book you want for your Jetbook.

Thanks for sharing your experiences.
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Old 05-15-2009, 03:16 PM   #3
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I agree Ham88, I love my jetBook. Aside from having to strip the DRM to read most new releases, I really only have one complaint (so far).

It seems like the jetBook doesn't support hyperlinks, I have yet to find ANY book that the table of contents works on. On my Sony PRS505, I can select a chapter in the TOC, and go there. On the jetBook, I need to do a text search for "Chapter 5" or somesuch. It’s not a deal killer, and I’m thinking my Sony will be in the Flea Market pretty soon, but it’s something I wish ECTACO would implement in a future firmware upgrade.

Oh yeah, aside from the size (it really does fit in my pocket) and screen, one of its very best features is support for hierarchical file structure. The file name format “authorfirst_authorlast#Title” is not needed if you just organize your files in folders named for “AuthorLast, AuthorFirst”. Coincidentally exactly like Calibre does it!
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Old 05-19-2009, 08:59 AM   #4
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Does anyone know what the file size limit is? I converted a PDF to both Epub and Mobi and reduced the file size from 97MB to 15MB. When I try opening either the Mobi or the Epub version it says "file is too large"
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Old 05-22-2009, 02:01 PM   #5
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I hope to receive my new jetbook sometime in the coming week. Sounds like it is necessary to update the firmware when starting. Please, can anyone provide a link to correct and step-by-step directions for updating the firmware?
Thank you!
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Old 05-22-2009, 03:40 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by rgeorg View Post
Please, can anyone provide a link to correct and step-by-step directions for updating the firmware?
Thank you!
Yes please, I upgraded mine to "i" using the directions provided on the upgrade page, and it was somewhat challenging. I was fianally able to muddle through, but only by some less than intuitive experimenting. It's a wonder that I didn't brick my jetBook.

I've seen somewhere that there are better directions on the JetBook forum, but I have not seen them.
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Old 05-22-2009, 06:21 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by rgeorg View Post
I hope to receive my new jetbook sometime in the coming week. Sounds like it is necessary to update the firmware when starting. Please, can anyone provide a link to correct and step-by-step directions for updating the firmware?
Thank you!
I used the link below and instructions to upgrade it for 30i version:
http://www.jetbook.net/upgrade.php
It works fine.
I cheked it with ePub books available for free now:
http://eharlequin.com/store.html?cid=1317
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Old 05-22-2009, 06:34 PM   #8
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Hi Kris777,
Thanks for your help again. I'll have to just see what firmware it comes with. The instructions seem straightforward as long as I can identify the correct keys. I guess the download link at the bottom of the page is the 30i version (from the file name)? It's OK even though it is a beta version?

Hopefully I'll receive the jetbook soon. I just returned from a business trip to Germany where I was able to see an eink device (Sony 505) for the first time. Loved the form-factor, but I'm glad the jetbook doesn't have the page-turn latency or flashing.
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Old 05-22-2009, 06:41 PM   #9
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Hi Kris777,
Thanks for your help again. I'll have to just see what firmware it comes with. The instructions seem straightforward as long as I can identify the correct keys. I guess the download link at the bottom of the page is the 30i version (from the file name)? It's OK even though it is a beta version?

Hopefully I'll receive the jetbook soon. I just returned from a business trip to Germany where I was able to see an eink device (Sony 505) for the first time. Loved the form-factor, but I'm glad the jetbook doesn't have the page-turn latency or flashing.
Yes, it is beta version but I didn't find any problems. I like jetBook screen more than Sony.
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Old 05-22-2009, 09:12 PM   #10
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I found the secret to flashing the jetBook is to reset it before starting the flash process. There is a small hole on the back that a straightened paper clip fits in to reset it.
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Old 05-24-2009, 02:28 AM   #11
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I would like to know how good the new epub and mobi support is. Can anyone compare the Jetbook's display of these formats to a Sony, Cybook, whatever? I'm particularly interested in how the Jetbook renders ebooks with pictures, complicated formatting, tables, etc.

Thanks.
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Old 05-25-2009, 02:14 AM   #12
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None of the Jetbook owners here can tell me about epub and mobi support? I know some Mobileread members have used both a Sony and a Jetbook. I was hoping for some comments, as I am thinking about getting a Jetbook while the $169 NewEgg promotion is still on (actually, I don't really know how long that promotion is good for).

I did see over at the Jetbook forum that new firmware is promised that will add dictionary support for epub and mobi. The dictionary is a big plus for me.
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Old 05-25-2009, 03:01 AM   #13
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None of the Jetbook owners here can tell me about epub and mobi support? I know some Mobileread members have used both a Sony and a Jetbook. I was hoping for some comments, as I am thinking about getting a Jetbook while the $169 NewEgg promotion is still on (actually, I don't really know how long that promotion is good for).

I did see over at the Jetbook forum that new firmware is promised that will add dictionary support for epub and mobi. The dictionary is a big plus for me.
I have a Sony PRS505 and a jetBook. The only time I've turned the Sony on was when I first got the jetBook and was comparing the screens. The jetBook 5" LCD is at least as easy to read as the Sony's 6" EInk screen.

I don't really see any difference between Mobi and ePub files, both work equally as well.

I like the fact that the jetBook REALLY does fit in my trousers pocket, and the support for hierarchical file folder structure is WONDERFUL. All readers should have that.

The down side is that the jetBook doesn't seem to support hyperlinks, so TOCs don't work, and if you don't have the ability to strip DRM, lack of DRM support would be a deal breaker.

Last edited by wodin; 05-25-2009 at 03:05 AM.
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Old 05-25-2009, 03:08 AM   #14
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Thanks for the advice on the firmware upgrade Kris777 and smithno -
Hopefully the device will arrive this week, and then I'll be scared to try the upgrade right away - but I'll do it eventually.
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Old 05-25-2009, 03:36 AM   #15
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