What PDF Files Look Like on Kindle DX

During Thanksgiving Day – which doesn’t exist in the Philippines, by the way – I managed to snag a Kindle DX with a 120-dollar discount from Amazon. With a deal like that, it’s hard not to click the Check Out button. Sure, the Kindle Fire is all the rave now, but it isn’t e-Ink. And it certainly isn’t big enough for tech ebooks, either – or for PDF files.

Now, I’m not going to go into the details of the Kindle DX. Just go to this Amazon link; it’s pretty much what it says. And, I’m not going to go into unboxing photos either; just head to my FaceBook album. Instead, I’m going to show you what a PDF file looks like on the Kindle DX.

Apart from the notes, and the cropping and resizing of photos, I have not changed the the pictures in any way. They are fresh from the camera. And unless specified, all the photos were taken in vertical Kindle layout.

But before anything else, you should see what a native Kindle book looks like. Below is Final Price (J Gregory Smith), which happens to be a free download right now. If you don’t have a Kindle, but want to check out Kindle books on your PC, dowload the free Kindle for PC software.


That looks good, right?

Now, let’s take a look at a PDF file which I transferred from my PC into the Kindle. This is a cropped cover of
HTML5 & CSS3 For The Real World (SitePoint):


But how about the text? Is it good enough? Fortunately, yes.


And the mix of text and photos? A seamless blend.


For once, here’s a technology done right, until one of the photos goes rogue. I have no idea what causes this, or how it is any different from the images in the photos above.


After all that good stuff, you didn’t expect that now, did you? Wait ’til we get to the magazine. For now, here’s some quacking UML from Head First Design Patterns 2e (O’Reilly) for the not-so-1337 dude who hates food bloggers.


Then, here’s the cover of the RUNNING Times magazine.


Looking inside, the page doesn’t look so good on vertical layout. I know the small image doesn’t do it justice. But, I’ve got 20/20 vision. So trust me when I say the text is fuzzy. Really fuzzy.


But if you adjust the Kindle to horizontal layout, it gets better. Definitely readable. Don’t mind the colors for the horizontal and vertical layout photos; it’s just a camera issue.


So there, folks, is what a PDF would look like on a DX (firmware v2.5).

Overall, this was a worthwhile purchase. Heck, it was a steal! Plus, buying ebooks are cheaper, lighter (to carry), and more tree-friendly. But who’s to know about plastics and electronics? Biggest downside, however, is it’s difficult to flip between different pages, especially if you need to refer to them from time-to-time. DX is a little slow to flip, too.

But again, the Kindle DX is a great gadget for book readers!


2 Responses to What PDF Files Look Like on Kindle DX

  1. Gary Bell says:

    Whilst I think the kindle is an amazing piece of kit, I can’t agree that ebooks are lighter. Ok, sometimes they are cheaper, but others aren’t.

    I’m not sure how they come up with the massive difference in price, but you see them and think “That’s can’t be right?!”. But then you have to ask, what should they cost? http://garybell.co.uk/tech/what-should-e-books-cost

    The PDF view on the DX does look good though, and the amount of PDFs I get through, this is definitely something for me.

  2. gchang says:

    Hi Gary, what I meant by lighter is that no matter if you bought only one or a thousand ebooks, the Kindle still weighs relatively the same. Compare that when you have to bring around 2 or 3 printed books in your backpack.

    By cheaper, I don’t consider it only at face value. Storage space costs money. If you had a room full of books, and still wanted to buy more books, you’d need to have more storage space, or a bigger bookshelf. And while I’m quite surprised at the price difference between digital media and printed books mentioned in your post, ebooks are generally cheaper. And discounts are usually bigger for ebooks too, compared to printed books (e.g. 50% vs 40%, in some of the cases I’ve seen).

    As for the price, I agree it’s far too overpriced. It used to be USD489 (Currently, it’s at USD379). So, when Thanksgiving slashed it down to just USD259, I just had to buy it.

    Thanks for reading my post, by the way. Happy holidays! 😀

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