Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

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island
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Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by island » Fri Aug 02, 2013 4:37 pm

To preface:
-I still prefer real books and swap books with friends.
-Still have a pile that haven't been read yet.
-Once read, unless it's a book I'll continue to go to for reference, I want it gone and give it to a friend or library.
-I love to read outside at home and on the beach.

So for the most part my reading style is compatible with library loans if it weren't for the hassle. However clueless me just discovered I can borrow e-books from the library without having to go there! That sounds great to me, and now that I know that I would love to get an e-reader,especially for travel since it's too expensive and cumbersome to pack an extra carry on of books that get left behind.

PRIME importance is that I can easily read it in bright sunshine and my understanding is that isn't the case with an iPad; is that true? However it would be nice to be able to read in bed when the lights are off. Is there one e-reader that easily fits both those lighting conditions?

Is there a brand or model that allow you to swap books with friends who have E-readers or if you also have an iPad which my DH wants for the web surfing and other functions.
Does one have more book titles available?
Or do all basically have the same features now?

I know models have changed quite a bit over the years so I'd appreciated any suggestions from your personal experience.

Thanks!

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wilpat
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by wilpat » Fri Aug 02, 2013 4:45 pm

I have an ordinary Kindle and I love it! You can read in bright light, but not in a dark room.
I am addictive reader -- I read about 200 books per year (4 a week)for over 60 years. Now that I am retired I read 1 book a day.
Amazon gives away lots of free books and some great discounts. The libraries differ in how much they offer. Mine is not real good, but I have patience being retired and simply wait for them.
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chaz
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by chaz » Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:07 pm

DW loves her Kindle. I have the Kindle app on my iPad.
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Watty
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Watty » Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:10 pm

I have an older e-ink kindle and a kindle Fire. For heavy duty reading the e-ink readers are a hands down easy choice if you don't want the other features of the Kindle Fire or a tablet like an iPad.

The Nook and Barnes and Nobel are in trouble so the choice is now pretty much between the normal Kindle and the Kindle Paperwhite for e-ink readers.

If you really want to be able to read in the dark and don't mind paying the extra $50 bucks or so then the Paper white would be the logical choice.

One thing to remember about borrowing books and audible books from your library is that if your local library does not have as good a choice as you would like then one option is to join a different library system by paying a modest fee. My wife listens to audible books all the time and she subscribes to the library system in the county next to ours my paying about $45 a year and can either check out audible books on CD from that library or download audible books from that counties affiliated web site.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by chaz » Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:37 pm

Here is where you can get free books daily for a kindle:

http://onehundredfreebooks.com/blog/201 ... ugust-2nd/
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ILnative
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by ILnative » Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:41 pm

I love my Nook and choose it based upon Consumer Reports reviews. I also wanted to support Barnes & Noble vs. the amazon empire. Not sure if buying one right now would be good though unfortunately.

I check out books from the library almost exclusively - maybe buy 5 or so books a year max. I have the basic version - it is not backlit - but you also don't have issues with it in the sunlight (it is like reading a regular book). If you get a backlit one (either Kindle or Nook) - make sure you understand how much that drains the battery. I only recharge my Nook about once a month and I probably read 500-1000 pages a week.

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SpringMan
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by SpringMan » Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:00 pm

Nook HD+ is a good deal right now at $149 for a 9 inch android tablet. It has a micro SD slot. It has access to Google play. Very good display, no camera however. Kindle app is free. My wife has the paper white Kindle and loves it for reading. She also has an iPad. The Nook HD+ is one third the cost of the iPad and suits me fine.
Best Wishes, SpringMan

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by nisiprius » Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:14 pm

I've been disappointed in my (old) Kindle Fire. However the disappointment mostly has to do with flakiness and rough edges as a tablet. As an eBook device, the biggest issue is short battery life--they claim 8 hours but it is more like 6 and only if you turn Wi-Fi off.

There are still some strange rough edges. For example, for reasons that completely escape me, there is only a set of discrete font sizes, widely spaced, and quite often I find that I need to decide between "too big" and "two small." Even stranger, the set of font sizes is not the same from one book to another, and about a third of all commercial books have the choice of typeface locked in.

Another really annoying weirdness, and I don't know where the fault lies--with the Kindle Fire, with Kindle system as a whole, with eBooks in general, or with lousy eBook production on the part of publishers--but it is almost always true that photographs, pictures, diagrams, and maps are close to unusable. They appear to be rendered at something like 640x480 resolution and magnifying it just gives you a larger blur. You cannot make out details on maps or charts (e.g. in Jeff Shaara's Civil War books).
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by SpaceCowboy » Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:43 pm

The Kindle Paperwhite fits the bill. It is e-ink and thus is very readable in the sun. It also has a backlight to allow reading in the dark. It is only slightly heavier than the ordinary Kindle, but weighs less than an iPad. It is also lighter than a Kindle Fire. Haven't tried a Nook, but Amazon looks like a survivor, whereas Barnes & Noble is having some troubles at the moment.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by hand » Fri Aug 02, 2013 7:29 pm

rrppve wrote:The Kindle Paperwhite fits the bill. It is e-ink and thus is very readable in the sun. It also has a backlight to allow reading in the dark. It is only slightly heavier than the ordinary Kindle, but weighs less than an iPad. It is also lighter than a Kindle Fire. Haven't tried a Nook, but Amazon looks like a survivor, whereas Barnes & Noble is having some troubles at the moment.
+1

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by nonnie » Fri Aug 02, 2013 8:25 pm

I continue to love my Nexus 7 tablet. All the features of a smaller tablet that is also an e-reader. I prefer to read paper books during the day but at night in bed I love the e-reader function of the Nexus. It's lighter than a r book, you can highlight, make notes, adjust screen brightness, fonts, whatever your heart desires. Plus, you then have a regular tablet computer to use the rest of the time. You can purchase books from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, download from your library or E-pub-- what's not to like? Plus, unlike Kindle (unless the Kindle app for Nexus is different from a regular Kindle) you can choose sans serif fonts (and not be limited to serif). Hopefully B&N will stay in business --what we do-- and B&N recommended this tactic is I order the books, my SO logs in as me and then as access to all the books I've purchased from B&N. You can't do this with Amazon.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/colu ... w/2598149/

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cbeck
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by cbeck » Fri Aug 02, 2013 8:56 pm

Forget the Nook. It's history. The Kindle paperwhite is that best reading experience that I have had on a device.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by magician » Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:36 pm

My wife has a Kindle and loves it.

I hate 'em all. I want a real book.
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Erwin » Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:56 pm

Believe it or not, after using first a Kindle, and then an iPad, I love reading my books from my iPhone 5. Perfect size (fits in my palm), the font can be adjusted to my liking, perfect weight, and as important, it comes with me everywhere, so I can read when I please.
Erwin

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Caduceus » Sat Aug 03, 2013 12:41 am

How many people have owned both a Kindle and Nook? Would be interesting to find out in these cases which one people chose. I think most people just buy one and stick with it so may not really be familiar with the other?

I've seen the Nook in stores, but only own the Paperwhite and love it. I read all my biographies and fiction and non-reference stuff on there now.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by jackholloway » Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:28 am

Caduceus wrote:How many people have owned both a Kindle and Nook? Would be interesting to find out in these cases which one people chose. I think most people just buy one and stick with it so may not really be familiar with the other?

I've seen the Nook in stores, but only own the Paperwhite and love it. I read all my biographies and fiction and non-reference stuff on there now.
Our family has both. I like the paperwhite better, my wife likes the nook better. One nice thing I like about the nook - it uses ePub, which is a known public validatable format.

After apple revs the ipad mini, I may give that a try, since I like the ipad 3 for reading, but found the ipad 3 too heavy to hold for hours. The kindle and nook were much easier to hold, and the current mini is not that much heavier.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by rj49 » Sat Aug 03, 2013 2:51 am

I have both the Kindle and Nook, and both are fine. One other choice that reads the same epub books as the Nook is the Kobo Glo, which has a lighted reading surface, but doesn't seem to have problems with splotchiness or uneven lighting, like the Kindle version sometimes has. They even have a special edition Kobo Aura, which has a pixel density far beyond other ereaders and has a 7" screen, versus most other ones. A lot of independent bookstores are selling Kobo also (I got mine at Powell's in Portland). You might want to wait a few months, though, because Amazon usually comes out with new Kindle versions in the Fall, and Kobo has a new ereader coming out. If you have the means, it's hard to pass on the Nook HD as well, even though it's not suitable for outside reading. But at $130 for an HD-screen tablet that's great for indoor reading and that has access to the Google Play store (including the Kindle app, so you can read Kindle books on it), I think it's a good deal.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by kramer » Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:20 am

I think a tablet is clearly a superior overall solution to e-ink readers for people that want a multi-purpose device and I have always considered e-ink readers as transitional devices during a technology transition to tablets.

However, a specialized e-ink device seems better if you need:

* reading outside in the sun
* long battery life (> 6 hours away from a USB charger plug)
* lightest possible weight (before but not anymore)

I read on the original Google Nexus 7 (7 inch display, 1280x800, 216 pixels per inch -- about the same as the Kindle Paper white), I don't use my Kindle 3 anymore. The just released Nexus 7 has (7 inch display, 1920x1200, 323 pixels per inch, 290 grams/10 ounces, $229) so I would consider the technology transition almost complete except for those 2 specialized needs above.

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frugaltype
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by frugaltype » Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:57 am

Here's a library management question:

I use kindle for pc, and it has an abominable interface in terms of managing books. It has kept me from even considering an actual ebook portable reader, out of the thought that their interfaces may be equally horrible.

For example, the collections can't be sorted alphabetically by name, or moved around in other way. There is no drag and drop for books into or out of collections or to order collections. If one imports from another device, in my case a backup laptop, the collections arrive in scrambled order for no discernible reason. Amazon customer service has no clue about how to deal with any of this.

I am constantly amazed at the complete trash that passes for user interfaces today.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Mudpuppy » Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:36 pm

At the sub-$100 price range, the Nook Simple Touch hardware and Kindle Wi-Fi 6" hardware are pretty much identical in terms of the screen and display capabilities. What you are paying for is the interface, software features, free book features, and vendor for non-free books. Here's my brief comparison of the two. My inner geek opted for the Nook, but I'll let you decide what appeals to you more.

Interface: Nook is a touch interface with buttons for certain actions (home screen, flipping pages). Kindle WiFi is purely a button interface (the Kindle Paperwhite does have a touch interface, but it costs more than $100). Nook also has a microSD card slot for expanded storage space, while Kindle uses Amazon Cloud storage to expand its storage space.

Software Features: Nook has slightly better page-turning algorithms on eInk screens than Kindle. To get an ad-free experience is $79 for Nook and $89 for Kindle (you can get the Kindle for $69 with ads). Nook is also based on Android, so it is a bit easier to root than the customized Linux software that the eInk Kindles use. Both vendors also have apps for use on other devices, such as your smartphone or PC, so you aren't limited to reading books just on the eReader.

Free Book Features: Both eReaders are supported by Overdrive, which is the software most public libraries use for lending ebooks. Both vendors have free book sections of their website and rotating book discounts that might include free books on certain days. Kindle has some additional free book features for Amazon Prime members. Nook allows free reading of any book (regardless of price) for one hour a day at a physical Barnes and Noble store. The Nook directly supports the EPUB format for books downloaded from Google Books, Open Library, Project Gutenberg, etc. The Kindle does not support EPUB, but there are free software programs like Calibre to convert from EPUB to formats that Kindle does support. Some free book sites also provide books in both EPUB and Kindle formats.

Vendor: You have Barnes and Noble for Nook and Amazon for Kindle. Both vendors have about the same price for paid ebooks, varying by a few pennies here and there (barring any sales they might be running). You do have to have some concerns about the lifetime of the vendors, since your paid ebooks aren't really "yours" as a physical book would be. There could be loss of access to content you paid for if the vendor were to go belly up (or were to remove that content, which did happen in the past with Amazon). However, the Nook is still useable for future book purchases/reading, even if Barnes and Noble were to go away tomorrow, since it can be rooted to stock Android, which means you could just install the Kindle app on it.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by jackholloway » Sat Aug 03, 2013 2:28 pm

Mudpuppy wrote: Vendor: You have Barnes and Noble for Nook and Amazon for Kindle. Both vendors have about the same price for paid ebooks, varying by a few pennies here and there (barring any sales they might be running). You do have to have some concerns about the lifetime of the vendors, since your paid ebooks aren't really "yours" as a physical book would be. There could be loss of access to content you paid for if the vendor were to go belly up (or were to remove that content, which did happen in the past with Amazon). However, the Nook is still useable for future book purchases/reading, even if Barnes and Noble were to go away tomorrow, since it can be rooted to stock Android, which means you could just install the Kindle app on it.
That said, you can strip drm from kindle and nook books using DeDRM (either standalone or as a Calibre plugin). You can also swap formats with Calibre, at present, you can use either reader with either source. This also means that if amazon or b&n were to vanish or remove a book, you would still have your copy. I do this to all of my amazon books.

While this may be a license agreement violation, it seems to me that this is not a DMCA or copyright violation for US citizens as long as you do not share said decrypted content. Check your own laws in your jurisdiction.

This is extra work - worth it to me, but not to everyone.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by gerrym51 » Sat Aug 03, 2013 3:27 pm

i have kindle HD 8.9 love it.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by frugaltype » Sat Aug 03, 2013 3:46 pm

jackholloway wrote:[
That said, you can strip drm from kindle and nook books using DeDRM (either standalone or as a Calibre plugin). You can also swap formats with Calibre, at present, you can use either reader with either source. This also means that if amazon or b&n were to vanish or remove a book, you would still have your copy. I do this to all of my amazon books.
I tried reading about DeDRM, but it sounds horribly complicated. Is there a version/directions for idiots?

i have been concerned about losing my kindle format books ever since I discovered that when I once closed my amazon account (I was ticked off at their customer service), I lost access to all the kindle books I had paid for. I was able to get my account and therefore the books back, but who knows what the future will bring. If I can protect my kindle books from amazon going crazy, I would like to do so.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by daytona084 » Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:46 pm

I have the kindle app for Android (Asus Eee Pad) and it works great. It can do white on black, black on white, or black on sepia. The only problem is direct sunlight.

Regarding Nook vs. Kindle, isn't that analogous to deciding between VHS or Beta in the 1980's?

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by nisiprius » Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:05 pm

frugaltype wrote:Here's a library management question:

I use kindle for pc, and it has an abominable interface in terms of managing books. It has kept me from even considering an actual ebook portable reader, out of the thought that their interfaces may be equally horrible.

For example, the collections can't be sorted alphabetically by name, or moved around in other way. There is no drag and drop for books into or out of collections or to order collections. If one imports from another device, in my case a backup laptop, the collections arrive in scrambled order for no discernible reason. Amazon customer service has no clue about how to deal with any of this.

I am constantly amazed at the complete trash that passes for user interfaces today.
I haven't done a complete analysis, but the Kindle Fire sucks as far as book management goes. It just screams that they don't truly expect anyone to have more than a few dozen books loaded on the device.

Since one of the chief reasons I bought the device was to be able to read Project Gutenberg (free public domain) books comfortable, I have a lot of books on it. Arguably too many but still. I'll be reading along in America Aflame: How the Civil War Created a Nation and he'll quote something striking Mark Twain wrote in A Gilded Age and I'll download that, and he'll mention The Red Badge of Courage and I'll download that... you know what? the user interface sucks to badly that I can't even see any place where it shows me how many books I have on the device. It's shows 3.06 GB used of 5.36 GB available, but some of that is music and videos. The number of books is probably only in the mid three-digits, but I am constantly having to do searches to find books I know are on the device.
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by ruralavalon » Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:18 pm

For a single purpose e-reader -- Kindle. I have a plain no-features, wifi-only Kindle (no 3g, 4g or any g), no keyboard, works great in bright light, small and very portable, fits in a pants pocket, easy acesss to large selection of Amazon e-books, and many free e-books. Really inexpensive, as I recall under $50. Best for just reading, in my opinion.

Also have the Kindle app on my Android phone, but its not as easy to read on the smaller screen, and harder to read in bright sunlight. Not a good substitute for a Kindle, but gives you another way to access any book you have on your Kindle. It is a free app, so I thought why not just get it too?

My wife has a Kindle Fire 8.9" HD, with apps for websites and search engines you commonly use its great as a small very portable computer. I may get one too for that different use. But its much less useful as an e-reader. Its larger, less portable, harder to hold in one hand, easier to read in the dark but not in bright light, and generally more difficult to use as a reader. My Wife got hers instead of an I-pad, not for reading although she uses it for that now that she has it. I would not buy one if what I wanted was an e-reader.
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Mudpuppy » Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:35 pm

daytona084 wrote:Regarding Nook vs. Kindle, isn't that analogous to deciding between VHS or Beta in the 1980's?
Not quite a good analogy. With VHS vs BetaMax, once you bought one, you were stuck with that format and had to buy the other to support the other format. But the same can't be said for eReaders. A better analogy would be buying a PC vs Mac back before the Macs were Intel-based. Back then, there weren't many alternatives with the Mac if you decided you didn't want to deal with Apple, but you had plenty of alternatives for the PC if you decided you didn't want to deal with Microsoft Windows.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by jackholloway » Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:39 pm

frugaltype wrote:
jackholloway wrote:[
That said, you can strip drm from kindle and nook books using DeDRM (either standalone or as a Calibre plugin). You can also swap formats with Calibre, at present, you can use either reader with either source. This also means that if amazon or b&n were to vanish or remove a book, you would still have your copy. I do this to all of my amazon books.
I tried reading about DeDRM, but it sounds horribly complicated. Is there a version/directions for idiots?

i have been concerned about losing my kindle format books ever since I discovered that when I once closed my amazon account (I was ticked off at their customer service), I lost access to all the kindle books I had paid for. I was able to get my account and therefore the books back, but who knows what the future will bring. If I can protect my kindle books from amazon going crazy, I would like to do so.
Most of the options in DeDRM do not apply to you, as you are using only a kindle, and it handles half a dozen formats. By default, you do not even need to enter a serial number.

If you are on a Mac, download DeDRM 6.something.
Unzip it.
One of the options is a drag and drop application called DeDRM - drag your .azw, .mobi, or .az3 files from My Kindle Content onto it.
See if it produces a file named .nodrm.mobi - if it does, you are golden.

Alternatively, there is a directory called calibre plugins, follow the calibre instructions to install them. You then just drag .mobi or .azw files from My Kindle Content to calibre.

You only need to do one of these two.

I do not use it on a PC, so I am not sure how it differs.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by AustenNut » Sat Aug 03, 2013 7:40 pm

I recently purchased a Nook HD, mainly for when I'm traveling. I like to read multiple books, and the weight of one tablet was far less than the equivalent number of books I would have brought. The reason why I went for the Nook over the Kindle was 1) price ($130 vs $200), 2) greater access to books from my public library (I can downlide the epub or the kindle version depending on what's available), 3) expandable SD slot. I went with the HD version over the ink reader because I just preferred how the text was laid out, plus it is more versatile in terms of being able to surf the web and watch videos. It really is more like a mini-computer. I still prefer hard copies of books to e-versions, but I felt that the Nook would suit my purposes.

FYI: bright sunlight was only an issue occasionally (when I was on the beach).

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Post by pinecrest » Sun Aug 04, 2013 12:29 am

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Mudpuppy » Sun Aug 04, 2013 1:24 am

pinecrest wrote:There were several remarks about the poor management of book collections on the Kindle. How does it differ on the Nook or other devices? Is there any device that would work well with a large collection of books, say 500 books or more?
On a Nook, you can set up "bookshelves", which are basically customized indices for your books. A book can be part of multiple bookshelves For example, I could set up a bookshelf called "Classic Literature" and another called "SciFi" and put The Time Machine in both of them. The only downside of bookshelves is that this information is only kept locally on the device and does not synchronize to your Barnes & Noble account. So if your Nook is lost, stolen, or damaged, you have to recreate all of the shelves. And setting up the shelves is not a straight-forward task. I didn't bother to recreate my shelves after I cracked the screen on my first Nook.

Which reminds me, regardless of which eReader you get, take care to guard the screen. Unlike an LCD screen that you can keep using after it cracks, the eInk screen is not useable where it cracks. If you get a tiny crack in the corner, you might be okay. But my first one ended up with a large crack that took out 2/3rds of the screen. Mine cracked because I was carrying it around without a cover and I put in an outer pocket of my laptop bag. The bag got bounced against a pillar while I was getting on the subway and that was enough to do the screen in. I'm still not sure if it was point pressure on the screen or twisting pressure that did it. You might want to invest in a hard case for storing the eReader to protect against both.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by frugaltype » Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:40 am

pinecrest wrote:There were several remarks about the poor management of book collections on the Kindle. How does it differ on the Nook or other devices? Is there any device that would work well with a large collection of books, say 500 books or more?
I got calibre installed overnight. (Thanks for the help, folks.) I have not figured out all the features, since the author is not a native English speaker so the user's manual is somewhat baffling when explaining concepts. But it looks like it is a good organizational tool. I have almost 400 books.

I also, after a significant struggle, got the plugin mentioned above installed to strip off the DRM stuff, so hopefully if amazon does me in I will still have access to the books I've bought.

Now, I was doing this with kindle for pc, which allows one to select and drop all 300+ books into calibre at once. (Edit: by selecting the files at My Kindle Content, not by doing anything with kindle for pc itself.) There were remarks on various websites that led me to believe if I were trying to do this with a device, it would have to be book by book. Maybe, not sure. And maybe there could be some sort of using kindle for pc to do this and then a quick way to update an actual device.

Note that if you do the drag and drop, the books have to be downloaded already. I had only a few downloaded because I had changed laptops awhile ago and although you can import from the previous kindle for pc, amazon will not automatically download the books to the new one. So I had to download 300+ books by hand, kindle for pc lacking a meta download. (Copying the old files directly does not work, apparently because of protection issues.)

Update: When setting up calibre, I selected generic device since it didn't have an explicit kindle for pc setting.
Last edited by frugaltype on Sun Aug 04, 2013 9:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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JamesSFO
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by JamesSFO » Sun Aug 04, 2013 8:09 am

I would say Amazon (Kindle) vs. B&N (Nook) is mostly down to personal preferences. However, B&N's financials don't look so good and they are going to discontinue some of their devices this fall while Amazon is likely to continue to roll out new products.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by nisiprius » Sun Aug 04, 2013 8:31 am

P.S. Given Barnes & Noble's recent problems a) in general, and b) with the Nook in particular, I'd take that into account. I was an early adopter of eBooks, buying the Nuvomedia Rocket eBook device for $200--over the counter at a brick-and-mortar Barnes & Noble, as a matter of fact--circa 1999. The product was taken over by Gemstar-TV Guide and its then-much-lionized business genius (note: irony) Henry Yuen, who proceeded to remove features, discontinue services like the online "Rocket Library" of free public domain books, and transmute it from a general purpose reading device into a shut-up-and-shop purchased-content-only dedicated locked-down device. I and other users griped in forums but were told we did not understand the business and were irrelevant and "not part of the target market." Apparently Yuen may not have fully understood his target market, though, because everything collapsed. All purchased content was DRMed, encrypted, and locked to a hardware serial number in the device. When the servers were shut down, the lifetime of my hundreds of dollars' of purchased content became limited to the physical life of the device I owned, and when it bit the dust, all my content became inaccessible.

I know the Nook uses some DRM system that supposedly is standardized--is "open DRM" a contradiction in terms?--and in theory might allow content to be migrated to non-Nook-branded devices, but I'd go through the FAQs with a fine-toothed comb and find out EXACTLY how this works. If Barnes & Noble were to stop supporting the Nook, exactly what device (or software) would you migrate your content to, and exactly how would you migrate it if Barnes & Noble weren't maintaining their services and Nook support?

If you don't care about long-term support and just want a raw device to use for however long it lasts, Barnes & Noble's problem might provide a market timing opportunity to buy devices at fire-sale prices. (Hmmm.... what kinds of eBook software run on a Microsoft Surface? :) )
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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Mudpuppy » Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:20 pm

nisiprius wrote:If you don't care about long-term support and just want a raw device to use for however long it lasts, Barnes & Noble's problem might provide a market timing opportunity to buy devices at fire-sale prices. (Hmmm.... what kinds of eBook software run on a Microsoft Surface? :) )
As I already said, it doesn't matter if Barnes & Noble goes belly-up when it comes to being able to use a Nook Simple Touch. There are plenty of guides and software programs freely available online that allow you to turn a Simple Touch back into its underlying Android tablet. There are a few complex steps, but it doesn't require a degree in engineering to follow them. Then you could install whatever book reading app you want from Google Play and continue using the device.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by mike127 » Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:48 pm

As others have noted, you can use either Kindle or Nook separately from their bookstores, etc. if you're sophisticated with technology, then you should go with whichever technology you like best, recognizing you could get books from third party sources. But if you mostly want to get books from the library and from the Amazon or B&N stores that are built into the devices, it's worth thinking about the long term support you'll get from those platforms.

If you're in that category, it would be hard for me to recommend Nook (for the record, I've bought a few kindles for various family members and have a kindle myself, but still think Nook is a decent product) because B&N has announced it's discontinuing the Nook tablet devices and is cutting back investment in the Nook platform generally. If you're going to consider a Nook, you should read this piece from the Wall Street Journal: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/if-noo ... 2013-07-11

I know others have raised this point in the thread but it's a critically important one if you're going to invest in a platform to have a sense that the platform will continue to be supported in the near term, IMO.

As noted, for full disclosure, I've owned a number of Kindles -- my current one is the bottom of the line, bare bones, which I love -- and I couldn't recommend them more.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Jeanz » Sun Aug 04, 2013 5:08 pm

I use my Nook Simple Touch all the time. Mostly I borrow books from the library or get older things, like Victorian fiction, from Project Gutenberg. The Nook HD and HD+ are real bargains now; I just got one, and the apps that I have installed from Google Play are working well. Access to Google Play is a feature I wanted, as is the ability to set up separate accounts for other family members.

The Nook uses the epub format, which isn't supported only by B & N, so I'm not worried about ending up with files I can't read, although I suppose anything with DRM protection could turn out to be a problem eventually.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by mhalley » Sun Aug 04, 2013 5:29 pm

Looks like amazon has put the kindle fire on sale (due to a better one coming out soon) so if you want to save 50 bucks on one now is the time. Note that the new one will have much better specs, so if you want the latest and greatest you might want to wait.
Mike

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by BlueEars » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:53 am

Why not consider the Samsung Tab 3 8.0? Link: http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Galaxy-Ta ... +tab+3+8.0

It's a lot more then an E-reader but for about $100 more you get a great device with loads more capability. I have a Kindle Fire bought over a year ago before the Ipad Mini came out. It's already kind of out of date for a cheapy tablet with some web capability. It served its purpose on trips out of the country though.

There is a great review by Daisy S. on the 1st review (200+ comments and followup) for the Samsung tablet. I'm planning on buying this next week.

Here is a comparison I did for myself. I wanted a somewhat mobile solution with a decent sized screen and sharp resolution. The comment shows what I'm looking for but many people here will have different wants:


Image

P.S. My wife has a Kindle Touch which is cheap and good for outdoors reading. But I love color and rarely read outdoors. Plus most of my books are from the library and not digital.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by stratton » Mon Aug 05, 2013 9:43 pm

nisiprius wrote:If you don't care about long-term support and just want a raw device to use for however long it lasts, Barnes & Noble's problem might provide a market timing opportunity to buy devices at fire-sale prices. (Hmmm.... what kinds of eBook software run on a Microsoft Surface? :) )
I was in a Barnes and Noble where a sales person was demoing it to a potential customer and they offered to install Amazon's Kindle Reader software on it if the customer bought it. The Nook is now yet another Android tablet.

This, and the fire sale price implies B&N has enough Nooks they are desperate to move them fast. That fire sale price has been going for over a month.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by serbeer » Tue Aug 06, 2013 2:02 pm

I read a lot of books (sometimes more than one per day) and I've been using e-readers extensively over the past 4 years. I am on my #6 now. The last two were Kindle Paperwhite (I lost #5, alas) and the previous 4 were all Sony. My advice is to stick to e-ink reader--dedicated device for reading books. Main reason is battery life. Since e-reader only consumes energy while changing page, and not at all while you are reading the page, they last days (for active reader like me), or even weeks for more average readers). As far as I am concerned, tablets (including Kindle Fire) are not adequite as paper book replacement since they need to be re-charged frequently.

At this time, I would get Kindle Paperwhite. For $119 you have a very good reader that has screen illumination, excellent contrast, small enough to carry in the pocket (where I carry mine most of the time), capable of withstanding high heat (I read regularly in dry sauna, using waterproof pouch, where temperature averages 180F, for over half-hour at a time, and the reader gets so hot, it can be hard to hold, and yet it works without a glitch), I dropped it too a few times for good measure :) I don't have any major complaints about it, and that's why when I lost my first paperwhite, I simply bought a second one. Screen illumination was the key feature I was missing in Sony readers that I used previously. That feature, of course, consumes energy even between pages, but the light is surprising efficient and battery life impact is minimal, at least on low settings that I tend to use.

Hope it helps.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Dutch » Tue Aug 06, 2013 4:29 pm

I'm not a big fan of the Kindle and its ecosystem of proprietary formats and DRM.

Choose a reader that accepts the .ePub format and a whole world of free books opens up to you: Nook, Sony, Kobo etc.

Choose a reader with an e-ink screen. People who suggest a tablet with LCD screen simply don't read much. It has nothing to do with reading in sunlight. It is all about eye strain. With an e-ink screen you won't suffer from eye strain and with a LCD screen you will, after reading for more than an hour.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by serbeer » Tue Aug 06, 2013 4:53 pm

Dutch wrote:I'm not a big fan of the Kindle and its ecosystem of proprietary formats and DRM.

Choose a reader that accepts the .ePub format and a whole world of free books opens up to you: Nook, Sony, Kobo etc.

Choose a reader with an e-ink screen. People who suggest a tablet with LCD screen simply don't read much. It has nothing to do with reading in sunlight. It is all about eye strain. With an e-ink screen you won't suffer from eye strain and with a LCD screen you will, after reading for more than an hour.
Agree about LCD screen--it is for ocasional readers only.

Guess what, I installed free 3rd party CoolReader program on my Kindle, and can read .epub as well as some other formats that kindle does now support natively. Actually, I do not use Kindle's own proprietory formats at all but use .mobi, .epub, .fb2 instead. So the "whole world of free books" is very much open to me, and I enjoy it very much thanks to excellent Kindle Paperwhite hardware.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by island » Thu Aug 08, 2013 6:45 pm

Hi everyone. Wow, Iooks like I came to the right place; lots of informed e-reader users here. Thanks for all the replies and widening the discussion because there is obviously more features than I was aware off.
I think the Kindle Paperwhite will be perfect for my needs. Good outside in bright light and also can read inside with lights off. That's win-win! Husband will probably eventually get an iPad for the web surfing, but good point to those who warned about eye strain with heavy reading. That alone nixes it for me.

What I didn't realize before this thread is that there are sites to download free books. I only knew of the library. Will have to check those out. Project Guttenberg and epub? Are their others?

Thanks for the scoop!

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by hand » Thu Aug 08, 2013 7:29 pm

Amazon actually has a good number of free or almost free books. Check out the top 100 free kindle books - a list which changes hourly.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by kramer » Thu Aug 08, 2013 11:07 pm

BlueEars wrote:Why not consider the Samsung Tab 3 8.0? Link: http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Galaxy-Ta ... +tab+3+8.0

It's a lot more then an E-reader but for about $100 more you get a great device with loads more capability. I have a Kindle Fire bought over a year ago before the Ipad Mini came out. It's already kind of out of date for a cheapy tablet with some web capability. It served its purpose on trips out of the country though.

There is a great review by Daisy S. on the 1st review (200+ comments and followup) for the Samsung tablet. I'm planning on buying this next week.

Here is a comparison I did for myself. I wanted a somewhat mobile solution with a decent sized screen and sharp resolution. The comment shows what I'm looking for but many people here will have different wants:


Image

P.S. My wife has a Kindle Touch which is cheap and good for outdoors reading. But I love color and rarely read outdoors. Plus most of my books are from the library and not digital.
The new Nexus 7 just came out a couple weeks ago (not listed on your chart) -- It's retail is $229. It has 323 pixels per inch (1920 x 1200). This compares to 264 ppi for the Ipad retina display and 216 ppi for the Kindle Paper white. My case for the original Nexus (standard 6 or 7 inch soft case) was about $5 from Amazon. Although I found one just as good at the dollar store for $1, so I bought an extra.

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Re: Best E-Reader: Kindle, Nook or?

Post by Jeanz » Fri Aug 09, 2013 2:49 pm

Google books and Openlibrary.org are other good places to look for free public-domain books. Both also include works still under copyright, so that only snippets are available, but that can be useful if you're doing light research.

Both Barnes & Noble and Amazon offer some free books for their e-readers. I haven't found anything free from B & N that I really want to read, but some people are enthusiastic.

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