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Looking for tablet/e-reader advice
Chris Bailey
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#16 id:60013 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 6:17 am

I'm exploring a lot of options but I'm starting to really see the differences between e-readers and tablets. It makes me think I should get one of each, but that will seriously lower my budget for each, hehe. I really wasn't looking to spend more than $350.00 here so that makes it pretty tricky I suppose.
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#17 id:60014 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 6:34 am

Why do you need one of each? Or more precisely, if you have a tablet, why do you need the ereader-only device?
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#18 id:60015 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 7:46 am

E-ink readers are lighter, have longer battery life, and are easier to read.

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#19 id:60016 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 7:58 am

Chris Bailey said:
I'm exploring a lot of options but I'm starting to really see the differences between e-readers and tablets. It makes me think I should get one of each, but that will seriously lower my budget for each, hehe. I really wasn't looking to spend more than $350.00 here so that makes it pretty tricky I suppose.

The basic Kindle is $79, and the Kindle Fire is $199.

But it's really a matter of personal preference.  As I said, I wouldn't mind a Kindle Fire as well, but if I could only have one I'd certainly pick the e-ink reader - it's smaller, lighter, easier on the eyes, and the battery life is far superior.

For many activities (movies, games, music, browsing, mudding, etc) the Fire would be better, but I already do those things on my PC, my laptop, my smartphone and my iPod Touch.  The Fire would be a nice compromise (more comfortable to read than my phone, easier to carry around than my laptop), but I've already got the functionality covered by other gadgets.

What my Kindle replaces is the paperbacks (and occasional hardbacks) I would always lug around to read on the way to and from work, and which already overflow the shelves in my relatively small apartment.  It's as nice to read as paper, and (unlike my other devices, which I have to recharge daily) only needs to be recharged every few weeks.
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#20 id:60017 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 9:04 am

i have a kindle any mine generally lasts for 4 weeks if i turn wifi off... its the same one as KaVir has i believe.. and i think its pretty decent... still do buy the occasional BOOK tho as i like to have them in physical form :)

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#21 id:60018 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 9:05 am

DH - I would like to an e-ink e-reader device just for reading, and a tablet for general tablet use. I just didn't know much about them prior to this discussion. I don't think I could fulfill all of my feature requests properly with just one. And since I can get a basic Kindle and a Kindle Fire for under my budget I think I will.
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#22 id:60019 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 9:14 am


Chris Bailey said:
DH - I would like to an e-ink e-reader device just for reading, and a tablet for general tablet use. I just didn't know much about them prior to this discussion. I don't think I could fulfill all of my feature requests properly with just one. And since I can get a basic Kindle and a Kindle Fire for under my budget I think I will.


E-readers are much cheaper but all of them will be less capable at note-taking than a tablet. And if you don't read much in direct sunlight, and if you're willing to spend more for more features, then you may be perfectly happy reading from a tablet. Android fans seem to be generally happy with the ASUS Transformer series. I've had a very positive experience with iPad 2. Here's a review comparing the two.
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#23 id:60020 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 10:06 am

the asus transformer series does look good been reading about those recently.... and well... id not use an ipad.... mainly due to the fact apple dont support flash.... but there again i have heard rumours that android will stop supporting flash after ICS is launched properly... for all compatible handsets/tablets etc etc

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#24 id:60021 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 12:02 pm

CB -- I mean, why do you want an e-reader in particular just for reading? Are you trying to avoid recharging it often? (But if you have a tablet as well, you'll already be charging it every day.) Are you trying to get the e-ink screen? Well, that's certainly something you'll only get on e-readers.

The Kindle Fire is apparently a pretty nice device, so you should be happy. :smile:
My guess is that you will end up only carrying around one device in the end, and the Fire is more likely to be more useful to carry around. I know a lot of people who bought a reader and a tablet and ended up using the reader as paperweight (there's probably a pun to be found there somewhere).
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#25 id:60023 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 2:24 pm

DH - I was thinking the e-ink would make reading a bit more pleasurable. You are right, I imagine I will only be carrying one around. I imagine myself using the e-reader now strictly for reading the e-books I purchased from Amazon over the past couple of years thinking I could read them on my PC. Maybe for newspapers and scholarly journals as well?
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#26 id:60024 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 3:35 pm

Chris Bailey said:
DH - I was thinking the e-ink would make reading a bit more pleasurable. You are right, I imagine I will only be carrying one around. I imagine myself using the e-reader now strictly for reading the e-books I purchased from Amazon over the past couple of years thinking I could read them on my PC. Maybe for newspapers and scholarly journals as well?

Just get a tablet and use that for e-books.  I have an ipad, and reading e-books is all I use it for (all its good for, really).  e-ink is a nice idea in theory, and a kindle feels weightless compared to my ipad, but try reading a textbook in colour and then reading it on a kindle.  If I wanted to feel like books were filtered through something to make them less readable, I'd go buy an old dec terminal turn the lights off and bask in the monochrome glow.

I do not recommend buying an ipad, unless you've bought into the Apple experience.  I find it a un-user-friendly device and would trade it in for a decent android tablet at the first opportunity had I the money.

Also, I often load compsci pdf papers onto my ipad to read, as well as using Calibre (a free Windows tool) to make my own ebooks of interesting web pages.  In fact, I'd love to use calibre's web page grabbing and converting tools to grab articles of interest from news sites automatically, but I am too lazy to set it up.
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#27 id:60025 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 3:39 pm

Donky - I have a difficult time reading for long periods of time from LCDs. Browsing a forum or a few news articles is one thing, but if I sit down to enjoy a novel I'll get little more than a headache. Am I not the type of person the e-ink readers were designed for?
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#28 id:60027 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 4:33 pm

e-ink is nice more than just theory.  Try reading in the sun on an ipad.  CB-- Get a kindle.  I love mine, and I wouldn't ever trade it for a tablet for reading.

Last edited Jan 7, 2012, 4:33 pm by Runter
David Haley
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#29 id:60028 Posted Jan 7, 2012, 7:49 pm

Yes, Runter is right, there is definitely something to be said for the e-ink technology. But depending on what you're reading and doing, it simply might not be enough for you. Technical books with lots of colored diagrams are a great example of something that simply suck with most readers' rendering. I also am rather confident that you'll get far more annotation software etc. on a proper tablet than a reader-only device.
I guess the only solution for you, if comfort reading is your key decision point, is to try it out. No point having a fancy schmancy tablet if you can't actually read on it. (But then I question the viability of having two in the first place, if you already have a laptop to transport for what I'll term non-reading mobile use.)
FWIW I recently spent a very long series of flights reading off of my Android tablet and it was fine, and I am usually bothered by reading screens for too long. It helps that the font size was quite large.
I don't typically read in the sun so no comment there from me.

I wonder if your issue with long LCD screen reading is related to font size -- most people have font sizes that are too low for comfortable long-term reading.

BTW, you can read Amazon books on your PC (and other devices too like iThings and Androids) -- it sounded like you were saying you need the Kindle for those?
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#30 id:60036 Posted Jan 8, 2012, 2:56 am

i have 2 kindles (the same one as kavir, and a more recent one which has no keyboard) and they are fantastic for reading on. i also have kindle software on my tablet and it is far more of a strain to read from the tablet than from the kindle.
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