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Readers for the PDFs?

posted Dec 18, 2012 11:47:12 by DanTrue

Since the world seems to be changing around me, I must bite the dust and get something better than my desktop to read PDFs on, especially since I now have a whole bunch of Runequest-related PDFs lying around, begging for a print & bind job that I can afford for them all (or have the space for).

So, what do you guys use out there? My girlfriends Sony reader showed the RQ6 Core rulebook pretty well, though I would prefer a few inches larger screen. I would prefer an e-ink reader, both for price and for readability - also, I really don't need a tablet.

I realise this may belong on a tech forum, but all I can see about pdf reading are for people reading articles, newspapers or books, this seemed more appropriate, since RPG books tend to have a certain mass of weird images, maps etc. which may not translate as well to all devices.

Hope someone has some experiences to share :)

- Dan
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16 replies
barry said Dec 18, 2012 18:09:11
A little off topic but using an epub file is MUCH better - I had a one off of Dundeon Wolrd on Monday night and the hyperlinked epub on my iphone 5 and ipad was very easy to search (Text!) and to read...
DanTrue said Dec 18, 2012 18:11:19
Perhaps, but I've never seen the files sold as epub on Moon Design or drivethru. But perhaps you can convert freely between them? Thx for the tip anyways.

- Dan
bluefenix42 said Dec 18, 2012 19:00:34
There's a couple iPads and a Kindle at my table, all of which seem to work fine. There's been some complaints, though, regarding the font that RQ6 uses - apparently the serifs on certain letters make it hard to read if you don't zoom in enough. Pretty sure that would be an issue on just about any reader, though.
barry said Dec 18, 2012 19:32:17
Hidan, sorry you are correct, more wishful thinking from me..

Not sure if calibre converts PDF to ePub ok or even if its allowed
Chris said Dec 18, 2012 21:58:29
I read RQ6 on my ipad, and it's great, no worries at all. Well, hardly any worries.

If I had to nitpick, the RQ6 layout isn't best for an ipad. With ipad, you can 'crop' the white margin deadspace on the sides and on the top and bottom. This has the affect of enlarging the print size because it zooms in closer because there's no deadspace there to get in the way. However, RQ6 has two niggles concering this; 1. the page numbers get cut off becaue they are at a wide angle, and 2. you lose any sidebar text that might be lurking on the left of right side. This severely limits the 'crop' option, but in no way interferes with the actual reading experience.
[Last edited Dec 18, 2012 22:00:23]
"This is where we hold them! This is where we fight! This is where they die!"
Antalon said Dec 18, 2012 22:44:05
I use an iPad. In fact, I bought it solely to read RuneQuest 6 ;-0

The bigger screen is better. And, it has the power to handle pdfs very easily. My mate has a Nexus 7. Very tidy little machine but it seems to be slow at moving the page / turning pages.

I bought Goodreader, which is excellent.

Chris said Dec 18, 2012 22:58:16
Oh yes, Goodreader and iPad, it's like a hotdog and mustard made marriage
"This is where we hold them! This is where we fight! This is where they die!"
DanTrue said Dec 18, 2012 23:39:49
Yeah, I keep hitting the Ipad-is-best-at-pdf--argument. However, I am not going to spend the money a tablet costs for this, and I'm not an apple fan anyway. Also, I hate reading pdfs on my computer, so I think e-ink is the way to go.

- Dan
Dreameister said Dec 19, 2012 06:37:59
Hi Dan,

You can convert PDFs to epub (and mobi) with calibre (which is free), but I'm not sure about the legality of such a thing. I would assume it's OK for personal use, but I wouldn't bet on it.

Incidentally, at least in the case of mobi files converting doesn't work all that great with picture heavy PDFs and having several columns of text can cause a problem, too.

Reading PDFs on kindle is possible, but it's a hassle. I have a 6" version so the display is not that large, you have to zoom in the PDF to read it and it doesn't fit well on the screen (PDF is a picture file so changing the size while scaling to fit the page is not an option), so there is a lot of going back and forth, zooming in and out to read a two column text. But I did read half of RQ6 on it. Sheer stubbornness :)

So, while it's possible, it's a hassle and you probably want as large a display as you can get.

thourne3 said Dec 19, 2012 08:03:37
I would recommend the ASUS android tablets. Both myself and my wife have had the TF101 for over a year and love them. The newer model TF700(I think it is) has as good a screen as the new ipads do.

As far as readers on the tablet, you can't go wrong with ezPDF on the android platforms. Hands down the best android pdf reader.

VaughanCockell said Dec 19, 2012 13:23:33
I bought an Archos Arnova 10" tablet for my RPG pdf needs. It may be a little slower than the others mentioned, but at £130-£150 for a 10 inch screen, you can't argue the price, plus a 32 Gb SD card for £15 you can't argue the price over here in the UK where most 9-10 inchers are at least £250+
DanTrue said Dec 19, 2012 15:39:46
Hm, that is actually not too bad pricewise. I would prefer e-ink however, instead of a lighted screen.

- Dan
VaughanCockell said Dec 19, 2012 15:55:30
I don't think you're gonna find 9-10 inch e-ink stuff very easily, at least in the Uk. Kindle did a large screen, but that was in gheir 2nd edition range and they haven't continued it. Good luck hunting anyway.
Chris said Dec 19, 2012 17:20:29
Thinking of buying a standard kindle for xmas. Is that the 'e-ink' thing people are on about? I'm not interested in the paperwhite or whatever it's called because there will be glare. I get enough of that off my iPad.
"This is where we hold them! This is where we fight! This is where they die!"
VaughanCockell said Dec 19, 2012 18:37:01
The standard kindle does indeed use e-ink. The thing about the paperwhite and other side lit ereaders is that they do not glare in the same way as backlit tablets but illuminate the e-ink display. It's eorth actually having a look at them because the glare of backlit displays is what they wanted yo avoid.
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