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Help me to get an affordable PDA to read ebooks

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Anonymous
August 24, 2004 3:15:33 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

Hi.
I'm new to this PDA thing. I've tons of ebooks I want to read on a
trip out of town. I would like a PDA that can read pdf files. I'm
confused as I couldnt find information like harddisk space. Since I
have tons of ebooks (my whole library is 2 GB), I would like to have a
PDA that can take at least a few hundred MB of ebooks with me. Do they
have harddisk on PDA? If not, then if they're using memory, are all
PDA the same with expansion for memory modules? I dont have a great
budget for this gadget. Just a good enough powered PDA for pdf
reading. Could someone please recommend one? I have to get it tomorrow
before my trip. Thanks!
Anonymous
August 24, 2004 8:30:25 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

"kackson" <kackson@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:90250227.0408241015.7f9d0deb@posting.google.com...
> Hi.
> I'm new to this PDA thing. I've tons of ebooks I want to read on a
> trip out of town. I would like a PDA that can read pdf files. I'm
> confused as I couldnt find information like harddisk space. Since I
> have tons of ebooks (my whole library is 2 GB), I would like to have a
> PDA that can take at least a few hundred MB of ebooks with me. Do they
> have harddisk on PDA? If not, then if they're using memory, are all
> PDA the same with expansion for memory modules? I dont have a great
> budget for this gadget. Just a good enough powered PDA for pdf
> reading. Could someone please recommend one? I have to get it tomorrow
> before my trip. Thanks!

Whenever I try to read a .pdf file on my Palm, the Adobe reader says that it
isn't "tagged" properly, and I get junk. Even on newly-created .pdf files.
You may want to seriously consider using PalmReader (free) or Tome Reader
(sorta free, but great) and downloading tons of free books from
memoware.com.
Anonymous
August 25, 2004 12:35:30 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

In article <2p1mr5Ffg300U1@uni-berlin.de>,
"Peter Franks" <hazard53@mailcan.removethis.com> wrote:

> "kackson" <kackson@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:90250227.0408241015.7f9d0deb@posting.google.com...
> > Hi.
> > I'm new to this PDA thing. I've tons of ebooks I want to read on a
> > trip out of town. I would like a PDA that can read pdf files. I'm
> > confused as I couldnt find information like harddisk space. Since I
> > have tons of ebooks (my whole library is 2 GB), I would like to have a
> > PDA that can take at least a few hundred MB of ebooks with me. Do they
> > have harddisk on PDA? If not, then if they're using memory, are all
> > PDA the same with expansion for memory modules? I dont have a great
> > budget for this gadget. Just a good enough powered PDA for pdf
> > reading. Could someone please recommend one? I have to get it tomorrow
> > before my trip. Thanks!
>
> Whenever I try to read a .pdf file on my Palm, the Adobe reader says that it
> isn't "tagged" properly, and I get junk. Even on newly-created .pdf files.
> You may want to seriously consider using PalmReader (free) or Tome Reader
> (sorta free, but great) and downloading tons of free books from
> memoware.com.
>
>

PDF files are a pain, at least on my i705. It could be because the
Dragonball 33mhz processor is too old and slow for the job. There is a a
Adobe reader for Palm OS advailabe for Mac. It will convert files that
are'nt tagged and make them work. I would think this would also exist
in the windows world.

I would vote for the i705. I have one and read lots of ebooks on it.
I personally like the relatively large screen. The battery life is
another thing I like about it, as it is a B&W display. If you need a
colour display, of course your battery life will more than likely be
decreased.


Another idea for a B&W palm would be an M125. It uses the same
processor as the i705. The main 'advantage' would be that you do not
have to charge it. It runs off of 2AAA batteries. The disadvantage
would be a smaller screen, and you must be quick in changing batteries,
or you will lose all data. The book says you have 1 minute... .


The M125 also will accept SD memory cards, so you can put all your
books, readers, etc on that and go from there. The i705 also does the
same thing.


I agree that PalmReader is a great free ebook reader. Another reader
to consider is iSILO. The down side is that you get a trial version
that has all features enabled for 30 days, after that you have to
register (pay) to enable it to keep all functionality. It still works
as an 'acceptabe' ebook reader IMHO, however PaimReader does for free
what you have to pay iSILO to do. Use both and you be the judge.


One last item... www.memoware.com rocks for free ebooks. You can't go
wrong there. Thousands of free ebooks and download links to readers are
all there. You might be out of luck for your trip, but in future,
consider the above...Happy reading.


Ron Bardo<rmbardo@chartermi.net>
Related resources
Anonymous
August 25, 2004 2:11:17 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

In article <90250227.0408241015.7f9d0deb@posting.google.com>,
kackson@yahoo.com (kackson) wrote:

> Hi.
> I'm new to this PDA thing. I've tons of ebooks I want to read on a
> trip out of town. I would like a PDA that can read pdf files. I'm
> confused as I couldnt find information like harddisk space. Since I
> have tons of ebooks (my whole library is 2 GB), I would like to have a
> PDA that can take at least a few hundred MB of ebooks with me. Do they
> have harddisk on PDA? If not, then if they're using memory, are all
> PDA the same with expansion for memory modules? I dont have a great
> budget for this gadget. Just a good enough powered PDA for pdf
> reading. Could someone please recommend one? I have to get it tomorrow
> before my trip. Thanks!

If you have to get it tomorrow, it is unlikely you are going to succeed.

No disk drives on PDAs. They have their internal memory kept alive by
the battery. Many PDAs have an expansion slot that takes some kind of
flash memory. The form factor of the flash memory is different for
different PDAs. The sizes tend to range from 64MB to 2GB, but expect to
pay big buck for a 2GB memory device, and not all PDA will accept a
memory device that big. A 128MB memory card is most likely the most
affordable that will also carry a good number of eBooks (30 to 60
depending on the size of the eBooks).

As has been mentioned PDF is not that great on most PDAs. However, if
your eBooks are available in a PDA eBook format, then that would be the
best bet. eReader (aka PalmReader), MobiPocket, TomeReader, Palm doc
(not to be confused with Microsoft WORD) etc... There are free readers
for all of these formats.

or if HTML is available, then Plucker and iSilo are available to convert
this to a format that can be read on the PDA (they can also grab content
from the web and make it available to read off-line on your PDA).

If you are going to try PDA format, then you need to download and
install the Adobe Reader software for your PDA and use it to convert
your PDF files to a format that can be used on the PDA by the Adobe PDA
reader. The conversion takes place on your PC (or Mac) and the results
sync'ed to your PDA via the USB sync cable.

If you have to walk into CompUSA or similar store, then almost any PDA
with an expansion card slot will most likely work for you. Of course
you then have to decide on Palm OS based (what a lot of the readers of
this news group have) or the Pocket PC.

I will put in a plug for the (now discontinued, but still available)
Sony CLIE TH55. It includes Picsel Viewer that can read native PDF
files, and actually does a fairly good job (more or less). The TH55
also has very good battery life. But like I said, it is being
discontinued by Sony, and Sony looks like they are getting out of the
PDA business, plus Sony use Memory Stick expansion cards which tend to
cost more than other memory card technology. Oh but it is such a nice
PDA _BUT_ a whole lot more PDA than you need just to read eBooks.

But to be truthful, finding the right PDA, getting your eBooks into a
usable format, getting a reader for your PDA, getting the PC (or Mac)
software installed on your PC so you use the sync'ing software to
transfer your eBooks as well as the ebook reader to your PDA, etc... is
most likely going to take you more time than you have available, unless
you have someone with experience to do all the leg work, and then give
your a training session on how to use the software, as well as tips on
charging etc...

Oh yea, how are you going to charge your PDA. Are you going to carry
the charging cable and transformer brick, or are you also going to try
and find a USB charging/sync cable so you can use your PC's USB port for
power?

I wish you luck, as I personally love to read eBooks on my PDA and so
does my wife, but there is a slight learning curve. Once you have
gotten past that it is rather easy to do. It is the first time that
takes up the time.

Bob Harris
Anonymous
August 25, 2004 2:43:46 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

"kackson" <kackson@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:90250227.0408241015.7f9d0deb@posting.google.com...
> Hi.
> I'm new to this PDA thing. I've tons of ebooks I want to read on a
> trip out of town. I would like a PDA that can read pdf files. I'm
> confused as I couldnt find information like harddisk space. Since I
> have tons of ebooks (my whole library is 2 GB), I would like to have a
> PDA that can take at least a few hundred MB of ebooks with me. Do they
> have harddisk on PDA? If not, then if they're using memory, are all
> PDA the same with expansion for memory modules? I dont have a great
> budget for this gadget. Just a good enough powered PDA for pdf
> reading. Could someone please recommend one? I have to get it tomorrow
> before my trip. Thanks!

PDAs don't have hard drives - they have ram and flash ram, like SD card. I
have a Sony Clie PEG TJ37, and added a 128meg memory stick. It comes with
Picsel Reader, which reads PDF files rather nicely, but PDF is not a very
good format for ebooks. Unencrypted ebook formats are best, like doc files
(not Microsoft doc files), and an ebook reader like Tibr (tiny book reader)
or the one I use, TealDoc, make for a good reading experience.

You can probably do the same thing for less money by buying a used Palm M515
off the 'bay for $100 or so, and adding a nice 128 or 256 meg SD card.

Mike
Anonymous
August 26, 2004 7:02:35 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

Hi.
On the subject, I was wondering if it is possible to use iPod (or its
killer) to read pdf file? All I need actually is just read ebooks
which are just pdf and maybe listen to audio books. Why cant someone
come out with a device as simple as iPod and allow us to read ebooks?
I dont need scheudle organizer. I dont need alarm clock. I need none
of the PDA functions. I just need portability at affordable prices to
read ebooks. Is there such device out there? the PDA memory expansion
is way too expensive. Hardrive is cheap. Why can't anyone just put in
a 20 GB HD like iPOD and let us read pdf?
Anonymous
August 26, 2004 10:22:06 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

"kackson" <kackson@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:90250227.0408260202.611fc6a5@posting.google.com...
> Hi.
> On the subject, I was wondering if it is possible to use iPod (or its
> killer) to read pdf file? All I need actually is just read ebooks
> which are just pdf and maybe listen to audio books. Why cant someone
> come out with a device as simple as iPod and allow us to read ebooks?
> I dont need scheudle organizer. I dont need alarm clock. I need none
> of the PDA functions. I just need portability at affordable prices to
> read ebooks. Is there such device out there? the PDA memory expansion
> is way too expensive. Hardrive is cheap. Why can't anyone just put in
> a 20 GB HD like iPOD and let us read pdf?

I suspect that the book market isn't big enough to justify the effort by the
manufacturers. Otherwise, a monochrome Zire? PalmReader and Tome Reader
books are small, you can get quite a few on an expansion card. And the price
of those cards *will* drop, but who wants to be patient?
Anonymous
August 27, 2004 4:49:34 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

In article <90250227.0408260202.611fc6a5@posting.google.com>,
kackson@yahoo.com (kackson) wrote:

> Hi.
> On the subject, I was wondering if it is possible to use iPod (or its
> killer) to read pdf file? All I need actually is just read ebooks
> which are just pdf and maybe listen to audio books. Why cant someone
> come out with a device as simple as iPod and allow us to read ebooks?
> I dont need scheudle organizer. I dont need alarm clock. I need none
> of the PDA functions. I just need portability at affordable prices to
> read ebooks. Is there such device out there? the PDA memory expansion
> is way too expensive. Hardrive is cheap. Why can't anyone just put in
> a 20 GB HD like iPOD and let us read pdf?

There have been several attempts at creating a market for a dedicated
ebook reader. They have failed! Actually the Palm/Pocket PC devices
because they have more general use, have succeeded where the dedicated
ebook reader has failed. That is the reality. You best bet is to get a
PDA.

iPods can do audio books. But to the best of my knowledge they do not
do text based ebooks (of any kind). I could be wrong, but I am a heavy
ebook reader, and my wife has an iPod so I tend to pay attention to
stuff that happens in both spaces (but I'm not so hardcore that I would
catch everything, but I think I have a feel at least).

Hard drives. A dedicated ebook only reader could most likely use a hard
disk for the same reasons an iPod can. Namely, they would only need to
read data from the disk as you advance sequentially through the book and
thus only need to spin up once an hour or so. But as mentioned above,
the dedicated ebook reader market has failed (several times).

A PDA with its general purpose nature, and crammed full of other PDA
toys to make them more general purpose and to make them sell, do not
have the room, nor the battery capacity to drive a hard drive that would
need to spin up frequently, do lots of disk seeks (spinning up is very
power intensive, and seeking is also very power intensive vs just going
around in circles or reading data sequentially). That camera, voice
recorder, slider, keyboard, WiFi, Bluetooth, etc... all take up space in
there, and they also take power. Plus all iPods have been low power
black and white screens (small screens). PDA have large screens with
lots of colors, and backlights, and they eat power like crazy.

The manufactures of PDAs can make more money by putting in all these
bells and whistles, and depending on memory card technology, then they
can finding room for a hard disk and dealing with rotating media, which
might actually be slower accessing than solid state memories.

And back to market forces. I think the current PDA form factor is idea,
but chances are the market forces are going to push PDA form factors
towards smaller smart phones, because it is a bigger market and for a
lot of users, the Phone form factor is "Good Enough", which will reduce
the demand for the non-phone PDA form factor such that I may find myself
wishing for the good old days, while looking at my tiny screen on my
smart phone that I didn't want, but was the only way to get what I
wanted in a PDA.

Of course if you are good with electronics, then feel free to build your
own dedicated ebook reader :-)

Back to your needs. If you have the time, then for your needs, get a
Palm 500, or similar black and white (gray scale) from eBay. Good
battery life and I am fairly sure it has an expansion card slot. Get a
64MB or 128MB memory card for it. That should give you a ebook reader
that can last a long time between charging, hold a lot of ebooks, and do
what you want. You are not required to use the datebook, or address
book, or memos, or todo list, or any of the 1000's of Palm programs out
there. Just ignore them and they will go away.

"Adobe Reader for Palm OS" will convert your PDF file on your PC or Mac.
The Adobe Reader that comes with it for your Palm will read the
converted files. You are all set.

Bob Harris
Anonymous
August 27, 2004 1:25:20 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

On Fri, 27 Aug 2004 00:49:34 GMT, Bob Harris <harris@zk3.dec.com>
typed:

>In article <90250227.0408260202.611fc6a5@posting.google.com>,
> kackson@yahoo.com (kackson) wrote:
>
>> Hi.
[...]
>Back to your needs. If you have the time, then for your needs, get a
>Palm 500, or similar black and white (gray scale) from eBay. Good
>battery life and I am fairly sure it has an expansion card slot. Get a
>64MB or 128MB memory card for it. That should give you a ebook reader
>that can last a long time between charging, hold a lot of ebooks, and do
>what you want. You are not required to use the datebook, or address
>book, or memos, or todo list, or any of the 1000's of Palm programs out
>there. Just ignore them and they will go away.
>
>"Adobe Reader for Palm OS" will convert your PDF file on your PC or Mac.
>The Adobe Reader that comes with it for your Palm will read the
>converted files. You are all set.

I have the 515 and I believe it does a beautiful job. The battery
life is great without the backlight and acceptable with the backlight.
With the 128MB memory card I don't know how many books it will hold.
I have about 10 sitting on there now. I have the "plain vanilla" Palm
ebook reader and the Adobe reader.

I only started using it for ebooks after I'd been using it as my PDA
for a couple years. With the standard size keyboard it's as good for
me as the heavy laptops I see my colleagues carrying around
conferences (ouch).

Lorre
Anonymous
August 27, 2004 6:23:23 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.palmtops (More info?)

"Lorremiddy" <lorre_me@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:6adui0dcb14nd1a7qbqgt290o4le5jto7s@4ax.com...
> On Fri, 27 Aug 2004 00:49:34 GMT, Bob Harris <harris@zk3.dec.com>
> typed:
>
> >In article <90250227.0408260202.611fc6a5@posting.google.com>,
> > kackson@yahoo.com (kackson) wrote:
> >
> >> Hi.
> [...]
> >Back to your needs. If you have the time, then for your needs, get a
> >Palm 500, or similar black and white (gray scale) from eBay. Good
> >battery life and I am fairly sure it has an expansion card slot. Get a
> >64MB or 128MB memory card for it. That should give you a ebook reader
> >that can last a long time between charging, hold a lot of ebooks, and do
> >what you want. You are not required to use the datebook, or address
> >book, or memos, or todo list, or any of the 1000's of Palm programs out
> >there. Just ignore them and they will go away.
> >
> >"Adobe Reader for Palm OS" will convert your PDF file on your PC or Mac.
> >The Adobe Reader that comes with it for your Palm will read the
> >converted files. You are all set.

Mine doesn't. That's why I ventured into other e-book formats.

>
> I have the 515 and I believe it does a beautiful job. The battery
> life is great without the backlight and acceptable with the backlight.
> With the 128MB memory card I don't know how many books it will hold.
> I have about 10 sitting on there now. I have the "plain vanilla" Palm
> ebook reader and the Adobe reader.
>
> I only started using it for ebooks after I'd been using it as my PDA
> for a couple years. With the standard size keyboard it's as good for
> me as the heavy laptops I see my colleagues carrying around
> conferences (ouch).
>
> Lorre
August 3, 2012 9:30:21 AM

The best thing for your ebooks is a dedicated ebook reader like the Kindle DX. You can also try the Sony PRS-650. It is quite a good e-reader for e books and you can carry it anywhere you want to!
!