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So I am shopping for an e-book reader but I am having trouble choosing the best one for me.

I already have a large amount of ebooks in .pdf format and will want to read these on the device.  Does the kindle do well with .pdf?  Do you still have all the functions when using a .pdf, bookmarking and changing text size and so on?

Thanks


 

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Doomhunter said:
So I am shopping for an e-book reader but I am having trouble choosing the best one for me.

I already have a large amount of ebooks in .pdf format and will want to read these on the device. Does the kindle do well with .pdf?
Not really, no. But if they have no copy protection you might be able to convert them to Kindle format. They might not look pretty but they'd be readable.
Do you still have all the functions when using a .pdf, bookmarking and changing text size and so on?
No. The PDF reader is rudimentary. As PDF is designed it's "what you see is what you get". And most PDF's are set up to display best on a standard 8.5x11 page. As the Kindle screen is only 6" diameter, that's not really optimal. There are pan and zoom controls, but they are not fast and most people find the experience to be unsatisfactory.

If you want an e-reader with e-ink that displays PDF's reasonably well, you might look at the Kindle DX. The screen is 9.7" diameter so a standard page displays much better. But even there the PDF reader is not as robust as what you'd find on a full computer, netbook, or tablet.
 

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PDFs are not hard to convert to mobi files so they can be read on the Kindle and have all the features of font sizing, etc.  I use Calibre to perform this.

I have converted a number of them using Calibre.  It is not hard to do, but sometimes I end up with some numbers in them.  I think it is probably page numbers or something.  But the PDF's are readable.

I would never try read PDFs directly on the Kindle since the size is just too small.

Given a choice I prefer to convert lit and epub.  I have had mixed results with txt and HTML.
 

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Franklin Eddy said:
PDFs are not hard to convert to mobi files so they can be read on the Kindle and have all the features of font sizing, etc. I use Calibre to perform this.

I have converted a number of them using Calibre. It is not hard to do, but sometimes I end up with some numbers in them. I think it is probably page numbers or something. But the PDF's are readable.

I would never try read PDFs directly on the Kindle since the size is just too small.

Given a choice I prefer to convert lit and epub. I have had mixed results with txt and HTML.
But if you have a pdf that has drm protection, you can't necessarily convert it on Calibre.
 

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At this point, I'd look on my library of pdf books the same way I'd look at a music collection on cassette tape. I'd keep an old device to read them on, but I'd move away from pdf's and start buying "real" ebooks in mobi or epub format.

PDF was designed as a format that would display a page the same regardless of device. It's more of an image format, really, than a text format. As such, it isn't much good for 6" screens (unless the ebook was designed to be displayed on a 6" screen, and even then you'd lose the ability to change type size and style).

Epub and mobi are true text formats with advantages pdf will never enjoy.
 

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If you need to read PDF files, you might look at the large-format Kindle DX. I recommend something like the iPad or Xoom over the Kindle. I think you would end up very frustrated trying to read a PDF on the regular Kindle— I did.

Mike
 

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As everyone said above, Kindle is generally not very good at viewing PDFs. You can't easily adjust the size of the text and PDFs generally don't fit the screen very well. I have found some technical manuals in PDF work okay, but it's not ideal. If PDFs are your thing try a different device or, try converting some of your PDFs using Calibre.
 

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I just wanted to add. I own a Nook Color in addition to my Kindle (yes, I am an addict... :p). It does very well with pdf files, because you can enlarge them on the screen a bit more. I've read a couple pdf books on it. The downside is the lcd screen, but I made it through without a screaming headache. The other downside is the fact that it is wifi only, no 3g. I don't know if there are any 3g models, but I can see why B&N wouldn't want to pay for the 3g because you can access and download a lot more data on the Nook Color than you can the Kindle 3g.

Just some thoughts... I still use my Kindle a lot more than my Nook.
 
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