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Go Back   Thoughts Media Forums > WINDOWS PHONE THOUGHTS > Windows Phone Hardware > Legacy Devices

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  #1  
Old 04-06-2005, 08:43 PM
tobyrne
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 33
Default Best eReader : PALM or PPC ?

Hey everyone. I'm considering getting a PDA for my brother. Myself, I own a Toshiba e755, but I'm not sure wether to get him palm or PocketPC. More specifically I'm considering a used Dell X3 or X5 or Tungsten E. Basically, he wants to read ebooks and possibly listen to some mp3s. I was just wondering which platform is best for viewing ebooks ?

From what I can tell, the PPC has a larger screen, which is probably more practical. Then again, I've seen alot of people quite happy with the small palm screens. And of course, palms are overall less expensive, which is an attractive pro for me

Does anyone have experience reading eBooks on PALM ? How does it compare to PPC ? Pros and Cons ?

Thanks !
 
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  #2  
Old 04-06-2005, 08:55 PM
surur
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Join Date: Aug 2006
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You get most ebook readers on both platforms. If you are buying a PDA just to be an ebook reader you probably want a cheap old monochrome palm with great battery life and a high contrast screen. However what makes you think that your brother will only use the PDA as an ebook? If you are looking for the most capable platform that is certainly a pocketpc, and everything you can do on a palm you can do on a pocketpc. With Dell in the market Palm hasn't got the price advantage it used to either.

In short - if all he wants is a ebook reader he may be better of with an old second hand monochrome palm. Else he may as well get a modern pocketpc with great software that will be generally useful to him in other areas of his life.

Surur
 
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  #3  
Old 04-07-2005, 01:28 AM
JD Silver
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The PocketPC will provide him with better capabilities for music. You might want to look for a used iPaq 1910, which had a nice small formfactor, and in the early versions of that model, a truly gorgeous screen.

For ebook reader I love Mobipocket, and I hate MS Reader.
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  #4  
Old 04-07-2005, 01:43 AM
tobyrne
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Join Date: Oct 2004
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Thanks for the help guys :way to go:

I'll look into the iPAQ line as well. Only thing is that the old ones (1910) are somewhat rare and the HPs are usually considerably more expensive than the Dell's too (on eBay anyways). Thanks again !
 
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  #5  
Old 04-15-2005, 12:52 PM
bigdog999
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Join Date: Mar 2005
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I've tried various ereaders on both platforms. I like Palm Ereader best on both platforms. The look and design are more pleasant, and the fonts seem clearer. Only problem I've found is that every reader has their own format and not all ebooks are available in each format.
 
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  #6  
Old 05-07-2005, 04:40 PM
Menneisyys
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Well, a complicated question because:

1, recent, non-low-end (everything above the Zire 21) palmOne devices have much better screens than QVGA Pocket PC's and are, in this respect, much better at reading e-books. Not only resolution-wise are they better than QVGA screens (even the standard HiRes Palm screens are 320*320, as opposed to the 320*240 QVGA PPC screens): they are just far less tiring on eyes, have far less blocks etc. Just put a Zire71 next to an iPAQ 2210 or 5450, and you will see a tremendous difference. The above-mentioned iPAQ screens flicker (this is a common problem with several iPAQ series), are blocky, and they render warm colors far worse than palmOne PDA's.

2, under Palm OS, it's possible to use much lower screen backlighting with third-party tools than on the Pocket PC. This is of extreme importance if you plan to read in the night.

Therefore, screen-wise, current palmOne devices offer much more than Pocket PC's in the same price range. Even a second-hand Zire 71 (you can get it under 100 US$, and, besides a great e-book device, it is a decent Palm device, runs Astraware games well etc.) will be much less tiring on your eyes than any QVGA PPC.

The above only applies to palmOne HiRes and HiRes+ devices versus QVGA PPC's. VGA PPC's are a different question. Some of them are just excellent e-book readers; most notably, the iPAQ hx4700. Not just because it has a gorgeous, 4" screen that has even warmer (if a bit off) color reproduction (only the Pocket Loox 720 has great warm colors like the ones on the iPAQ screen), but also because its minimal brightness is really good for night-time reading, unlike, say, that of the Toshiba e830 or, to a lesser extent, the Pocket Loox 720. Therefore, an iPAQ hx4700 is indeed a great device for e-books screen/brightness-wise, even better than Palms.

The readers on the PPC are, however, much better.

1, First, there is absolutely no CHM support on the Palm OS platform, while on the PPC, there're quite a few CHM readers. (You may want to read my article at http://menneisyys.freeweb.hu/chm/ on them.)

2, there is no µBook (http://www.gowerpoint.com/) for the Palm. It's one of the best all-in-one readers for the PPC. For example, in some cases, it's even better at, say, rendering CHM files than all of the above-listed dedicated CHM readers.

3, as I've pointed out in my (beware, pretty old and unedited!) article on e-readers ) http://menneisyys.freeweb.hu/mwc/ ), Palm OS doesn't support in-document images larger than 64 kbytes. There're e-book readers that make it possible to include >64k images in e-books, but, for example, iSilo and Mobipocket, the two most important readers, don't support this 'hack'. This is a problem if you want to read docs with a lot of high-resolution, large images with, say, Mobipocket (for example, tech docs with a lot of SVGA+ screenshots); in this case, the Palm platform will be a worse choice than the PPC.

4, there is no LIT reader for the Palm either. I don't think this is a big problem, though - after all, you can always extract the HTML files + the pictures even from your DRM-protected files and recomress them to a much more reader-friendly format (for example, Mobipocket).

However, if you don't plan to read CHM's and will never read tech docs that need large pics, Palm (particualrly palmOne) devices may prove better than QVGA PPCs because of their superior screens.

What would I personally choose?

If you have very little money and don't want to use your device for anything else than book reading (without support for CHM), get, say, a second-hand Palm T3 or Zire 71. Their screens are just unbeatable at this price segment.

If you have a lot of money and want a great all-in-one PDA that is also excellent at reading, get an iPAQ hx4700 or, if you need the special features (USB host, CIR etc)/jog dial/more memory, the Pocket Loox 720 (beware, the latter's minimal brightness is considerably higher than that of the hx4700 and there're no known workarounds for this!). Much as I'm a PL720 owner, in this respect I think the hx4700 is much better.

Also see for example http://www.firstloox.org//forums/showthread.php?t=2875 , http://www.firstloox.org//forums/showthread.php?t=2854 and http://www.firstloox.org//forums/showthread.php?t=3535 on some of the related subjects. They only add tidbits to what I've said and will not give you a comprehensive "bird's view" picture, though.
 
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  #7  
Old 05-08-2005, 04:13 PM
volwrath
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Menneisyys
Well, a complicated question because:
What would I personally choose?

If you have very little money and don't want to use your device for anything else than book reading (without support for CHM), get, say, a second-hand Palm T3 or Zire 71. Their screens are just unbeatable at this price segment.

If you have a lot of money and want a great all-in-one PDA that is also excellent at reading, get an iPAQ hx4700 or, if you need the special features (USB host, CIR etc)/jog dial/more memory, the Pocket Loox 720 (beware, the latter's minimal brightness is considerably higher than that of the hx4700 and there're no known workarounds for this!).
Or if you don't have alot of money and want a great all in one pda get the Axim X50v. Its an excellent ebook reader and has it all :twisted:
 
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  #8  
Old 05-08-2005, 05:03 PM
Menneisyys
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volwrath
Or if you don't have alot of money and want a great all in one pda get the Axim X50v. Its an excellent ebook reader and has it all :twisted:
Well... I'd debate with that too.

You can get a second-hand Zire 71 for around 100 bucks. (I've quick checked the 'buy it now' prices on eBay for the Zire71 and they were around 120 US$ - see for example http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...72179&rd=1 ). There weren't many T|3's; I've found one without 'buy it now' price, with the current bid of 61 US$ at http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...64118&rd=1 . I'd say you can get a T|3 for around 200 US$ - the price of a new rz1715.

I really doubt you can get an x50v for that much money For VGA devices, you indeed have to pay premium price, compared to QVGA and palmOne devices; even for the cheapest VGA device, the x50v.
 
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  #9  
Old 05-08-2005, 11:32 PM
volwrath
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Point well taken. Nonetheless I think for about the price you could get a used Axim X3i, which when combined with ubook is an excellent reader, and it gives you the flexibility to do so much more. The only thing the zire gets you is 320x320, which while being nice, id rather have a qvga pocketpc. I just hate having to convert any doc to .prc/pdb. I realize mpg and .html aren't so much an issue anymore, but it sure is nice to be able to drag anything to an sd card and use it.
 
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  #10  
Old 05-09-2005, 01:07 PM
Menneisyys
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Posts: 5,067

Quote:
Originally Posted by volwrath
The only thing the zire gets you is 320x320, which while being nice, id rather have a qvga pocketpc.
I don't debate a Palm device is less flexible than a Pocket PC, even in reading books (CHM; LIT; the need for conversion etc). However, their screens are much better than those of any QVGA PPC - not just because of the (somewhat) increased resolution. The "net" (the dark lines between individual pixels) are much less visible on the screens of palmOne devices than on QVGA Pocket PC devices. Also, add the (sometimes, depending on the PPC in question, much) better color saturation and the much lower minimal backlight level (which is very important in the night) to this.

This is why I'd prefer a transflective palmOne over a Pocket PC in the lowest price segment.
 
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