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Looking for tablet/e-reader advice
Chris Bailey
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#31 id:60038 Posted Jan 8, 2012, 3:56 am


David Haley said:
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?


I'm sold on the Kindle Touch (WiFi only, 3g in my rural area is depressing at best) and the Kindle Fire. I have two Hp Mini netbooks that I purchased for portability, and I am becoming more and more disappointed with them as times goes on. I'm excited to switch to a tablet to see what that does for my mobile experiences. The issue with long LCD screen reading might be font size related, I haven't really experimented with larger fonts. I typically use 1920x1080 on a 23 inch HP LCD (Primary Desktop) with unmodified font settings in Win7. I understand that I can use my Amazon books on other devices, I purchased them initially for PC reading. I just found it didn't work out for me. I am assuming that Amazon has worked extensively on integrating its services with its hardware, and hope that using Amazon video, music, and book libraries will be better on Kindles than other devices (Am I wrong here?).
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#32 id:60053 Posted Jan 9, 2012, 10:57 am

Chris Bailey said:
I typically use 1920x1080 on a 23 inch HP LCD (Primary Desktop) with unmodified font settings in Win7.

Eek!  :surprised:
Well there's your problem :smile:
Until I bumped up font sizes, it was awfully hard to read the screen for too long. I used to code on font size 8 or 10, but have since discovered that, especially on large (23+ inch) screens it really has to be 12 or even 14 (on the 30" screen).

Chris Bailey said:
I am assuming that Amazon has worked extensively on integrating its services with its hardware, and hope that using Amazon video, music, and book libraries will be better on Kindles than other devices (Am I wrong here?).

I dunno. I have zero integration trouble with Amazon stuff on my Android devices.
My understanding is that Amazon's own marketplace works better on their devices. On Androids (etc.) you have to deal with the fact that it's not the official marketplace app and so isn't quite as privileged. But in terms of the actual content, I have no problems.

I mean, click on Kindle, get your book list, start reading. Click on Amazon MP3, get your music, start listening. :smile:
Perhaps the experience is slightly better. But (and this is just my preference based on my usage patterns) I would never give up all the other things a real tablet can do over a straight e-reader. Again, though, the Kindle Fire is different because it's not just an e-reader, so YMMV.
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#33 id:60054 Posted Jan 9, 2012, 12:17 pm

I leave my kindle at my bedside, and sometimes take it with me when I'm out.  I really use it just for reading mostly text, and I think it's much easier on the eyes than my LED-LCD devices.

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#34 id:60055 Posted Jan 9, 2012, 5:07 pm

I got my wife a Kobo in 2009. The original WiFi, no-touch, e-ink version. It was about $100 (and the price hasn't changed much), but a factory refurb (direct from Kobo) is only $50. It support a wide range of formats and anything it doesn't support can be converted with Calibre.

There is an SD expansion slot, if that matters to you. Everything is simple drag-and-drop like a USB drive to add/remove content on the device. The WiFi is only useable for firmware upgrades and buying books direct from Kobo, though. No syncing or other features. She's happy with it.
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#35 id:60070 Posted Jan 11, 2012, 3:41 am

Yeah, it really depends on what your intent is.  If you want something to act as the paperback you always lug around with you, a kindle e-ink is hard to beat.  You only have to charge it every 3 weeks to a month, it's very clear and easy to read in almost all the same lightning situations you'd be reading a regular book in.

OTOH, if you want a fancy media center thing, then get a tablet and accept you'll be plugging it in every couple of days, and that it has a backlight which is what induces the eye-strain.

If you were using it for technical books/school/etc, I'd probably get a tablet... simply because it'd be easier to view color documents and also easier to access web content.  But for just reading, I think it's hard to beat the e-ink displays.
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#36 id:60071 Posted Jan 11, 2012, 8:41 am

In October 2010, I got myself the same Kindle as KaVir says he had -- except mine has 3G as well.  It's a fine source of distraction when I'm doing my normal workout on a cross trainer, and I heartily recommend it.

It was also incredibly useful when holidaying in Switzerland and we wanted to check the weather reports and didn't have any other kind of internet access.

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#37 id:60696 Posted Feb 14, 2012, 7:50 am

I'd check out the Archos tablets as another option to get. These can dual boot between android and Linux Ångström. Being able to run a full blown linux system=awesome!

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#38 id:60728 Posted Feb 15, 2012, 5:54 pm

my 8.5 bits - for technical books i have to have them in physical form i jump back and forth way to much and most of the time its just easier to either have a tab or thumb through until i find what i need.

tabelts are probably going to be the better choice as long as you remeber to charge them everynight, they are generally faster in searching better at adding notes and moving through text. but they do have the eye strain factor from the lcd and are not all that readable in day light, kindal fire is a nice little tablet and well priced after that i would recommend the new asus 7 inch that is coming out only 50 bucks more then the kindal and much much more powerful.  its in the same range of performance as the new asus transformer prime.

for ebook readers i've been really happy with my sony pocket, it reads alot of formats great battery life and like most ereaders and is great for novels and books that you read straight through. in my experience ereaders are not all that great for things that you have to jump around alot in like reference books or manuals and it can take a few seconds depending on the quality of ereader you get to change the page it might not sound like alot but if you need to go through 30 pages looking for one thing that can take a few minutes since most ebook pages don't always match up to there physical counterpart


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