If you follow this blog, you know that I’m writing a book to teach kids programming. A few weeks back I got my first set of author proofs from Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing and they looked great. It was nice to be able to read and find problems on paper instead of on a screen. After fixing many typos, I ordered a second set of proofs from Barnes and Noble Press. They were much cheaper than Amazon. Cheap enough that I can sell my book for 7$ less at Barnes and Noble than I can on Amazon.
The cover print quality is comparable. I’m not posting a picture here of the cover because I changed the color before sending to B&N. The interior paper is also comparable with the B&N book being marginally thicker than Amazon for the same number of pages. However, the color from KDP on interior pages is a little deeper – more saturated looking as you can see in the picture of the Pokemon cards. KDP is at the top. B&N is at the bottom.
Here is what colored text looks like from KDP:
Here is what it looks like from B&N Press:
The colors are all slightly lighter from B&N. However, the difference is not significant and only apparent if you hold the books side by side.
As a note, I chose “Standard Color” on white 70lb paper at B&N. B&N press also offers a “Full Premium Color” but that is likely intended for photo books and is very expensive to print with. KDP doesn’t offer different options for color.
For colored text and a illustrations, standard color seems perfect and makes author copies affordable and final book pricing much more competitive with what publishing houses charge for their books.