digital comics - lots of dumb? questions from an absolute dummy...
#1  stumped 07-04-2019, 04:15 AM
so I have just seen amazon's guided view reading method on a fire tablet which is impressive.

but I am used to working outside of amazon's restrictions e.g. I convert all my purchased books to epub, store them in calibre, move them with calibre companion, read in moon+..

what are my options then , to collect & read "guided view" comics on a pure android tablet:
. where to buy ( outside of amazon)- in a way that I can still use calibre etc.
. what to convert TO - if needed - or should I stick with buy from amazon and just use the Kindle for android app
. what android reader to buy ( must be ad free)- assuming moon+ is not optimised for comics

is "guided view" an industry standard or are there various proprietary versions. is it something "built in" to the book file or something that the reader app figures out how to do?

probably other questions to follow but those will help get me started

I am only interested in western comics, in English - if that's relevant - not anime, manga.... and I am UK based for purchases.

#2  ilovejedd 07-04-2019, 12:30 PM
CBZ is the format most often supported by comic readers (basically a plain ZIP file full of images). I believe there are Android comic readers that can do automatic panel detection but given these are purely software-based they can sometimes miss panels, mess up the panel sequence, etc. for pages with complex layouts.

Guided View is proprietary and initially came from comiXology (which Amazon acquired in 2014). At least back in its early days, there was an actual human reviewing the panels iirc so it was a mix of software-based panel detection and manpower for fine-tuning. In the US, one can buy comics from Amazon and get both Kindle and comiXology versions (but not the reverse). I'm not sure if it's the same situation in UK.

Personally, I buy on Amazon so I can easily liberate my comics and have DRM-free copies for posterity. However, I tend to prefer using the comiXology app over Kindle for automatic series grouping and really, better overall metadata and organization.

comiXology tends to have higher quality, too. For example, Black Monday Murders Vol. 1 (Hickman, Coker):

#3  ilovejedd 07-04-2019, 12:38 PM
Some publishers (e.g. Image, IDW) allow DRM-free CBZ and PDF backups on comiXology so that's pretty nice as well.

#4  stumped 07-04-2019, 01:13 PM
thanks guys - I doubt I would have spotted that amazon had bought comixology - I figured they were competitors

is CBZ a fully supported calibre format, for conversions, send to...

is it always the case that amazon don't bother with a separate comics format or a specialized reader and just put them in AZW3 to be read in Kindle for XYZ?

#5  stumped 07-04-2019, 01:30 PM
FYI - my wife is a big Neil Gaiman fan- she just finished all the amazon video series - Gods, Omens...and was asking about Sandman series but that only exists as comics?

We found 3 in Kindle unlimited, and I can see several more that are not in KU. I've not gotten around to researching any other stores as yet. Hoping not to catch a bad case of collector-itis and end up chasing expensive rarities on ebay
I also see that there are some annotated version of Sandman but I don't think they are obtainable in any digital format, only as paper or hardback books? so we may end up getting a mix of digital and print versions

#6  ilovejedd 07-04-2019, 02:11 PM
Calibre supports CBZ and it should be fine if you're converting from AZW3/KFX/EPUB to CBZ. For CBZ to ebook conversion though, I prefer to use Kindle Comic Converter (there's a thread here somewhere).

Amazon used to use AZW3 for comics but now they've been switching to KFX.

Sandman is DC Vertigo and at least in the US, I've only seen those on Amazon and B&N. No DC or Marvel on Kobo US I've seen so I've just stuck with Amazon.

There's a Sandman sale going on in the US right now. Perhaps there's one in the UK, too?

series page:

sale page:

$5 per volume is pretty much the lowest they go.

What I tend to do is browse by series on comiXology because they're much more organized (even tells you what collections the individual issues are included in). When I find something I want, I go to Amazon website to search then purchase. I never buy directly from comiXology unless it's from a publisher that allows DRM-free backups. If comiXology price is lower than Amazon, I just report it to Amazon (via the tell us about a lower price link) and it usually gets changed in a day or so.

DC is pretty good at milking customers. I don't even want to count how many different releases they have for Watchmen. Definitely be wary of collector-itis.

#7  jhowell 07-04-2019, 02:36 PM
Quote stumped
...and was asking about Sandman series but that only exists as comics?
'Sandman' TV Series From Neil Gaiman, David Goyer — With Huge Price Tag — a Go at Netflix

Neil Gaiman's beloved Vertigo comic Sandman is finally coming to the screen.

More than three years after New Line's failed attempt to turn the graphic novel into a feature film, Netflix has signed what sources describe as a massive financial deal with Warner Bros. Television to adapt the best-seller into a live-action TV series. Sources familiar with the pact note it is the most expensive TV series that DC Entertainment has ever done. The drama has officially been picked up with an 11-episode order.

#8  stumped 07-04-2019, 03:05 PM
Quote jhowell
'Sandman' TV Series From Neil Gaiman, David Goyer — With Huge Price Tag — a Go at Netflix
thanks again to all- so sandman could be on TV in some future year but probably not for ages...

the only issue I have with AZW is that i prefer not to have the amazon reader app on my pure android tablet - so as not to expose myself to accidental one click purchases s and so as not to expose my amazon account if I somehow managed to mislay that tablet ( it has no security set as normally it never leaves the house)

is there a "best" advert free e reader app for comics on android devices. not fussed abour collections and shelves, just a smooth "reading" experience

#9  ilovejedd 07-04-2019, 03:41 PM
On Android, I used to use Perfect Viewer (CBZ files). I don't use guided view, though. I prefer reading full page.

I've given up on Android tablets though and use a 12.9" iPad for comics nowadays.

#10  stumped 07-04-2019, 03:43 PM
Quote ilovejedd
On Android, I used to use Perfect Viewer (CBZ files). I don't use guided view, though. I prefer reading full page.
thanks - I assume I will find that on Google play ?

i have a 10 inch android tablet, but my eyesight is not what it used to be!

so I may need guided view

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