Tablet or E-reader for reading large-format PDFs

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Tablet or E-reader for reading large-format PDFs

Postby Wolf » Sat Nov 03, 2012 9:46 pm UTC

Hey everyone. I hope this in the right subforum, mods please move if I've put this thread in the wrong place.

So I'm currently looking for a tablet or e-reader that I would be using primarily to read tabletop RPG book pdfs, which tend to be larger in format that most e-books. (Common dimensions on paper are 6x9 inches, 8.5x11 inches, and 9x12 inches.) I was originally looking at the Kindle DX with its 9.7 inch screen, but Amazon has stopped selling it new and I'm not sure I want to go the used route on a Kindle purchase. I realize it would shrink the PDF somewhat, but I think most of what I'd be looking at would still be readable at that size.

I started looking at a few Asus android tablets and other such devices with 10" screens, but I'm having trouble finding one that fits within my budget of $300 or less. So I was hoping you good people might have some suggestions. Readability of the PDFs is the highest priority, and if possible I want to be able to buy the device new. (E-ink is a lovely bonus, but I couldn't find any other large-enough screened e-readers on the market.) Other than that I don't have any particular requirements or constraints.

Any ideas?
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Re: Tablet or E-reader for reading large-format PDFs

Postby KnightExemplar » Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:54 pm UTC

I'd say a larger tablet like an iPad or Transformer is the best thing for now unfortunately. Large e-readers have gone out of style, and the Kindle DX seemed to be one of the last ones to leave the market. You might be able to go for a Nexus 7, but I feel like you definitely want to hit that old 10-inch form factor of the Kindle DX. The extra inch compared to a Nook / Kindle isn't gonna help much.

I used to hear of good, large e-readers. The entourage was an interesting product (shut down last year). iRex Reader was also a nice large ereader... but I haven't heard of them since a few years ago. The Sony PRS950 seems to be the last thing available, but I haven't ever used it myself and it seems out of stock on Amazon as well. Its a bit of a shame because D&D sessions can go on for hours. The ~10 hour battery life of a tablet means you'll lose like half your battery, at least, every session. Thats low enough that you have to care about keeping it charged. Those old e-ink readers however definitely last damn near forever on one charge.

So yeah, now-a-days, I'd have to recommend a tablet. The 10-inch tablets people talk about are the iPad, the Transformer, and the Surface RT. So pick your poison (or start a flamewar). I'd personally go for something more expensive, like a convertible Windows 8 laptop like the XPS Duo 12... although those things are totally outside the price range of typical tablets. But you gotta love full x86 compatibility. At that price though, its more of a "laptop upgrade" than an "e-reader buy". Bonus points for having a full 1080p resolution at the 12-inch laptop form factor. (a definite bonus to reading text)

But seriously, I like this idea:


If you're willing to wait a bit, the Nexus 10 is going to be a solid Android competitor to the 10-inch tablet market. It should be out in a week or two. A solid Jelly-bean Samsung "Nexus-line" Android tablet at 10-inches. I'm personally not really into tablets though... I just don't "get" them.
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