06 April 2012

Which e-reading device should I get?

I guess the title of my post says it all.  It's time for me to get an e-reading device, and I should specify right now that it won't be any Kindle product.  I want to be able to buy my e-books anyplace that I want, and I will buy a book from Amazon only when it becomes the last source for books on this planet.

So here's the scoop: I used to have a Sony E-reader, and it was okay.  I currently read e-books on my smartphone, but I'd like a bigger screen.  What I don't know is whether I want some sort of tablet reader or a dedicated e-reader, so I'd like folks to share with me what they use and why (or why not) they love it.  If you have a Kindle product and want to share that love with me, fine, but just be forewarned that I will not purchase one. 

Right now I'm leaning towards the Nook.  But I don't know if I want the lowest-tech, non-color Nook with e-ink technology for ease of reading, or if I want to upgrade to something flashier.  If I go for a tablet, should it be a Nook tablet or other? I like the idea of doing more things on my e-reading device, but part of me wonders if that just means I would read less because I would be distracted by other things on a tablet-type of device...

I still intend to keep physical books as my primary reading material, but I want an e-reader for travel/vacation and I'd like to be able to download advance reading copies from NetGalley and other publisher sources. 

What say you, gentle reader?


  1. Hard copy still best I think, like you. But leaning towards a simple Nook myself for travel. I too feel I would be distracted by other offerings and would not just READ if I had the high end model. Like right now I am suppossed to be doing Quicken work for our farm and instead am reading your blog.

  2. I use amazon often anyway so the Kindle was a pretty simple choice for me, although the main thing I don't like about it is that it means I have to buy from Amazon, you can put other types of files on it though, I use it for PDFs from time to time.

    My Mum has an ipad which she does read from occasionally although never for extended amounts of time due to the glare. I used to read occasionally on my ipod touch too. It was good in terms of you could carry it around in your pocket but really it was to small for reading on. I found it annoying how often I had to turn the page and also how easy it was to accidentally turn more than one page with the touch page turning. Plus the glare meant I had to pick the exact right spot to sit in the room and usually couldn't read on the bus. It did mean I could read in the dark however, which was quite nice.

    Probably I would say go for something with e-ink if you think you will mainly use it for reading. If you want internet too I know Kindle does that but I don't know about other e-readers.

  3. Nook. I have all 3 mentioned here, but each is an early-adapter version. I didn't upgrade to the bells and whistles versions. The Kindle is probably most reader friendly but I find it a SIGNIFICANT disadvantage that we are required to buy our books only from Amazon and they price control those books. They promised no book over $9.99 and when they broke that rule, they lost me as a e-book customer. Nook is not quite as user friendly, but I adore that I can buy from the independent bookstores and often get a fabulous deal to boot. My best was from Unbridled Books - 25 books at 25 cents apiece. I wonder though if B&N is going to stay in business and be able to support the e-reader. Sony - meh. As an early adapter, I can't even remember how to get the books purchased and onto my device. Oh! Also, Nook allows me to use my own public library to check out their e-books. My vote is for the Nook.

  4. I'm on a roll. I think if I were a brand new buyer, I would buy the tablet version of the dedicated reader. I would not use my i-pad to read. The size is wrong and that bugs me greatly. I want my e-reader to still be about the size of a paperback. I agree though that I may not read as much as do all that other stuff. Okay. I'm done now.

  5. I've had a Sony e-reader (the newest model) for 4 months now and like it a lot. It's my first e-reader so I can't compare.

    Is there a particular reason you don't want a Sony again? Or you just prefer the Nook?

    I don't use my e-reader a lot and I still much prefer paper books, but it's handy, as you say, for Netgalley and free downloads (there seems to be no end to the number of legal downloads that are around!).

  6. I have a kindle myself, but I make liberal use of Calibre to change all the formats so I can have them on my laptop too.
    Otherwise its impossible.

    NetGalley downloads are important, I'd suggest another one is battery life. The e-ink technology is great, and I don't miss the touchscreen (not important when reading).

    Is there any device with an optional backlight?

    Dee from e-Volving Books

  7. But I buy lots of real books, tooApril 6, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    Call it sleeping with the enemy if you must, but the Kindle really is hands-down the best e-reader made by human agency. Just borrowing one for a bit would let you know just what to look for in another device. I treasure the thing because it's feather-light and does exactly one thing very well: present books. In black and white, or something close to it. It's for being distracted by reading, and nothing else. (Caveat: I've only purchased one e-book from Amazon ever. I use mine to store and read a big library of PDFs downloaded from Project Gutenburg and sundry other sites.)

    The basic Nook has the e-ink display I like so much (for reading in daylight, rather than night), though it has some minuses as well. Here's a not-to-old roundup of similar e-readers: http://www.wired.com/reviews/2011/12/roundup-e-ink-readers/?pid=2074&viewall=true

  8. I'm very happy with my Sony. I've been buying ebooks through my local bookstore and borrowing them from the library through it. The battery life is great.

  9. I don't own an e-reader, but I used to work at BN and had to sell nooks. I think the best selling point for them was the customer service aspect. A lot of the time when a customer would come into the store in need of tech support, we would take their device and tell them to browse the shelves while we called the hotline for them (a different, store-support hotline).

    The looks of relief on people's faces were priceless.

    That being said, it of course depends on the individual store and how much training they've given to their employees. But usually at my old store we could get the issue fixed within 20 minutes.

    Also, my store offered regular nook 101 classes, which were actually really helpful and taught you things like how to get the best quality free e-books. Man, I miss that store sometimes...

    Happy e-reading!

  10. NOOK!

    I've had a Nook Color for about two years now and it's still going strong. The battery life is phenomenal and the screen is nice and big. I use mine for browsing the internet, games, and apps, so it's perfect for me. My mom actually asked for one for her birthday last year because she loved mine so much.

    My grandfather received the Nook tablet in December and he loves it. I haven't used it many times, but I really liked what I saw. & it's very light.

    A friend of mine has the simple touch (the newest Nook without all the bells and whistles) and it's so tiny! But e-ink is amazing and looks so wonderful.

  11. Wow, thanks for all of the comments and input, y'all. I think you've collectively convinced me to go with a Nook, not least because I think it's hard to put a value on in-store support that they offer.

    I reckon I'll have to run down to the closest B&N and try them all out, but before that, I'll borrow my bookstore's Nook to see how I like reading on the device.

    i imagine that my household will have an ipad before the end of the year, but i don't want it to be used primarily as a reading device--i agree with those of you who say it's too heavy.

    thanks again!

  12. I had a Kindle2, which was far superior in functionality to the original Nook, (which a friend of mine had,) but the Nook SimpleTouch takes care of all of those differences. The e-ink was a big deal for me - I get eye strain with backlit screens - so I can't comment too much on the tablets except about the weight. I highly recommend the Nook SimpleTouch, both for functionality, and for the fact that you're supporting a book store instead of Amazon, with no notable differences. Hope you get to go play with one soon!

  13. ...whoops, signed into the wrong gmail account! that last comment was me, melody, fingers&prose :D

  14. I know you've received plenty o comments but I had to weigh in on the Nook. I have the Nook color and it's fantastic. Favorite feature for me is that I can expand the font size. I do occasionally play a couple of games I've downloaded but its not a big distraction. Being able to browse the web, check my email is huge. With the newer ones you can even downstream Netflix movies.
    I also love the free sample feature.
    My son just got the Nook simple and he loves it too. And yes, customer service is GREAT!


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