Consumer Reports tests e-book readers

Nooks, Kindles get top ratings


Shopping for an e-book reader for the holidays can be tricky because there are so many on the market.  The good news is prices are lower than ever.

Consumer Reports tested several, including Barnes and Noble Nooks, Kindles as well as readers from Kobo and Sony.  Tablets offer electronic books, too

"You can read e-books on a tablet, but a dedicated e-book reader is lighter, easier to hold in one hand, has a longer battery life and crisper type. All of these will make a difference in hour after hour of reading," said Paul Reynolds with Consumer Reports.

Among its tests, Consumer Reports assessed how fast pages turn and how easy they are to read in different lighting.

The best readers had no trouble with bright light, good for outdoor reading.  If you're going to read in the dark, a built-in light helps.

"While there are other manufacturers, your choice probably boils down to a Nook or a Kindle. Those are the brands with the best combination of performance, price and features," Reynolds said.

Consumer Reports gave top ratings to the $120 Barnes and Noble Nook Simple Touch wtih GlowLight.  The page  turns are quick, and it has crisp type.

For less money, they recommend the $70 Kindle with Special Offers from Amazon. The page turns aren't quite as fast, but it rated excellent for readability.