Product Review: Sony E-reader

I got a sony e-reader for christmas. It’s awesome.

As I’ve said before, this isn’t something I could afford for myself, so I’m still on the fence about e-books taking over the market, but I think the market is still developing, and the prices for the readers will come down, and more second-hand ones will be available.

That said, I do really like it. It’s red. All the other readers out there are shades of grey or black, and red to be different is awesome.

I wasn’t so concerned about the reading experience being book like, as long as it didn’t give me a headache. Scrolling through something on a computer is annoying, and it’s hard to find your place, and you can’t leave a bookmark – so I hate trying to read on the computer. But once I started using the e-reader, it was even a bit eerie how much like a book the screen looks. It’s not bright, not hard to read or anything, and the print is very sharp, even when it’s super small, it’s legible, though, of course, the print size is adjustable. There’s apparently a performance sacrifice to changing the print size, but I didn’t notice.

It’s the lightest one on the market so far, and that part is really nice too. I’m not that interested in a touch pad, because that would be too big to stuff in a small shoulderbag, the way one stuffs a paperback in a purse, but this is just the right size to fit anywhere a paperback will go.

The page turns are mostly quick, though, while it does support .txt files, and .pdf files, it slows down quite badly, especially with long ones, to the point that it froze up. A little googling told me the most popular e-pub management software seems to be calibre, so I downloaded that, and anything I want to put on my reader, I just convert it quick to e-pub format and it’s fine.

I found Calibre really easy to use – fairly intuitive for someone who knows computers, and would probably not be difficult to learn for someone who wasn’t.

One of the major things I wanted it for was to make notes on it, and I’ve been a little disappointed in that functionality, to be honest. The actual creation of notes, that was fine, the screen is sensitive and the stylus is a nice size. The problem was when I synchronized it with my computer, it duplicated the notes, about 50 times each, until I couldn’t add any new notes without cleaning it up because the number of notes had hit max. Now, this could have something to do with the fact that I used a website to created that particular e-pub file, instead of Calibre – I hadn’t discovered Calibre yet, or it could be something to do with the original file – no idea. It just happened. I’ll see if it happens with other files, and decide if the function’s pooched then.

That said, I really like it; it’s quickly become one of now three pieces of electronics I carry with me everywhere (the other two being my phone and my mp3 player.) It’s nice to have all my electronic books available anytime I want, and not have to decide whether I’m going to take the book I’m reading for enjoyment to work with me today or the one I’m critiquing. Last time I critiqued a novel, I had it printed out in a three ring binder – the e-reader made that oh so much more convenient to carry around. It’ll be nice when I go to revise my own novels later, especially if I can get the note-taking working properly.

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3 responses to “Product Review: Sony E-reader

    • It’s not so much a conversion – I’ve wanted one, I just don’t have the money for one, and I stand by my opinion that there should always be free access to books somewhere. The e-reader is great for newer books though, that I can’t find used copies of, and there are fewer and fewer used copies of books around these days. The e-books are a few dollars cheaper than the pocket paperbacks, for the most part. I got the Hunger Games trilogy for about $18, and most newer individual books seem to be in the $5-$8 range.

  1. Pingback: Book Review: The Hunger Games | Lindsay Kitson – Dieselpunk Author

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