Buying an E-Reader

Last week I bought an e-reader. I had a very specific reason. In connection with my new gig I recognized it would be prudent to read up on some subjects on which I’m presently a bit fuzzy which in turn entails buying and reading quite a number of relatively expensive books. Those books are available at significantly lower cost in electronic format.

Now buying something like this is a much more personal choice than you might think and the reality is that there is no one right answer. What looks fine to you might not look fine to me and vice versa.

After studying, reviewing, testing, and conferring on every e-reader and tablet I could put my hands on I finally decided (somewhat to my surprise) on the Kindle Fire HDX.

I found the ordinary Kindle e-readers completely unusable. I just couldn’t see them. I liked the top-of-the-line Nook but, sadly, the titles I wanted weren’t available in Nook format. The top-of-the-line Samsung tablet, too, was unusable. The text was just too blurry for my terrible vision.

It finally came down to the Apple iPad vs. the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″. They were very close but the Kindle’s combination of size, weight, and clarity of text were the determining factors for me. Its screen has the highest points-per-inch of any screen on the market of comparable size and viewed purely as an e-reader that made the difference to me. I’ve already probably saved the purchase price of the gadget in purchased books. Not to mention the space.

5 comments… add one
  • TastyBits

    I was going to get a Kindle until I saw the flash when turning the page. The Nook does it every four pages, but it is still annoying. I got the Nook Tablet HD (9″) when it came out, and I have been satisfied.

    Barnes & Nobles fully opened the Google Play store, and I think there is an Android app for Kindle books. I have mine loaded with about 200 titles from open sources. The Google Guttenberg Project has a lot of books available for free. They are mostly classics, but I am rebuilding my library electronically.

    The only thing I miss is being able to write in the margins. Adding notes is just not the same. I found one that has a stylus, but the book selection is limited.

  • Andy

    I think you made a good choice. We have a fire HDX, and ipad, a regular fire and my daughter has the Kingle paperwhite. For me the ipad is too too big for comfortable reading. The HDX is nice because of the screen and the fact it’s much more than a reader. My daughter loves her paperwhite though, and I agree it’s a great reading device. Small, very light, good screen, amazing battery life, but it’s a one-trick pony.

  • My daughter loves her paperwhite though, and I agree it’s a great reading device. Small, very light, good screen, amazing battery life, but it’s a one-trick pony.

    I found the paperwhite a struggle to read. That’s what I meant by “personal”. Her young eyes and my old ones may look at the same thing but not see the same thing.

  • sam

    I’ve got a Paperwhite and for what I read, it’s just fine. (Have of increase the type size on occassion.) One thing you need to be aware of with Kindle anything is that with books from Amazon, you are limited to to the number of notes (highlighted text) you can take. I think the limit is 100. Books in mobi format are not limited, and there are bazillions of those around. Also, you should install a program called Calibre on your system. Calibre is a nice way to keep a library of your books on your system, and, more importantly, you can covert books in epub or other formats to mobi so they can be read on you Kinlde (or Nook, too, I think). Bazillions of books in epub format around, too. You can also convert books in html format to mobi. And, if you find something in, say, doc format, you can convert it to html in your word processing program, then into mobi format in Calibre. Calibre is free, btw.

  • Ron Beasley

    I ended with Kindle Fire HDX as well. The initial reason I got it was my eyesight is not what it used to be and I can change the font size. I’ve been very happy with it.

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