To whit: If it won’t turn on, hold the button in longer. And if it still won’t turn on, hold the button in for even longer. And reckon on 8 hours to charge the battery fully – rule of thumb is the amount of time you’ve spent reading on it is the amount of time for the battery to recharge.
What I wanted was a simple device with good battery life (> 3 hours by my definition) and no third-party nonsense. I was not in the market for a Kindle or Nook, in other words. And it had to be easier to read books on than my phone (Nokia Xpress Music). (Leaving aside the very good free ebooks I downloaded early last year from Ovi, a couple of Jane Austen and Arthur Conan Doyle titles.)
So I’ve had the device for a couple of weeks now and I can tell you these things:
- I thought it was dead on arrival, but yeah, I just had to hold the button in for ages.
- The wall charger is the best thing ever. Eight hours recharge time? I’m asleep anyway! (Though if you only ever let it go down a bar or so of battery it doesn’t take that long to charge up.)
- Name your files like this: “Name of Book – Author” because the ebook list is generated off the file name, not metadata or the actual name of the book. eg. Our Mutual Friend – Dickens.txt (or “zName of Book – Author” for your special interest literature so that unlike me you don’t have an embarassing moment where you’re trying to show off your Pink eReader Of Awesome and your captive audience goes “Ooh! You’ve got ‘120 Days of Sodom’!” because of course numbers come up first on the alphabetically ordered bloody list.)
- Set the brightness on 1 (lowest) if you can – it’s plenty bright enough and you’ll get more battery life. Preset standard level is 3 (out of 6).
- .txt files with ASCII encoding definitely work (ASCII format .txt files require some digging in PG if you source ebooks there).
- .epub files with images will crash the reader (instant shutdown).
- .pdf files with full-page images may crash the reader.
- .html files should have as simple formatting as possible. The <QUOTE> tags don’t work, and indeed any text inside them will just vanish when you view the file on the reader.
- .rtf files can sometimes be spilt over two pages, with only 1.5 pages of actual text, on default magnification. It’s a formatting issue. I don’t know how but I fixed it by converting my failed .html format files into .rtf (copy html file text and paste into new rtf document).
- .txt files with line breaks (most if not all ASCII files from Project Gutenberg, for example) might have text that looks
in the default magnification. Two solutions are possible.
Solution 1) If you don’t mind swapping smaller text for better formatting, and you want a fast fix, press the magnification button three times. The first two times will make it bigger and the third resets it somehow so it magically stops
lines like this and bugging the crap out of you.
Once you’ve sorted out the line breaks with the magnification, you can then rotate the viewer and magnify up again until you’re happy with the text size.
Solution 2) Strip those bleeding surplus line breaks out using a WYSIWYG/source code html editor (MS Word or Open Office Writer will both let you do this – detailed instructions to follow in a seperate post). Of course you can delete each line break manually, but come on, do you really want to? I’ve done it. It’s a waste of time and you end up ruining the ending.
Verdict: It cost ~$100 AUD and I think it was worth it. It’s a joy to carry around and I’m actually having fun working out all the little kinks and unexpected hiccups. And I’m reading a lot more and branching out into authors I’ve never read.