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  1. #1
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?

    Member Since
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    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?
    TLDR version

    I have to buy a new laptop soon and can't justify both laptop and the most expensive iPad but I do think an iPad could be a good tool. That said, I can afford the most expensive iPad if an iPad Pro/Desktop situation were optimal.

    I would mostly use an iPad for these things a few hours a day about 4-5 months out of the year in areas without Wi-Fi/laptop due to the nature of my work:
    - Pre-production for film/photo projects (research, planning travel, emails)
    - Studying short films streamed on Vimeo
    - Watching longer films downloaded to the iPad while traveling/work breaks
    - Editing photos in Lightroom mobile


    What model/storage/size seems best for this scenario?
    ---------

    Going through the conundrum of whether or not I should get an iPad and if so, what kind + how much space. Wanted to share my situation and curious if those of you who are regular users have any insight to offer.

    I have an early 2011 Macbook Pro that's on its way out and do a lot of film/photography work - some of it is paid, but currently moreso a hobby that I'm extremely passionate about - so I'm already facing a big purchase in a computer.

    I travel a lot and my primary income is a job I work 4 months of the year. I work six days a week, 12 hours a day as a mechanic and phones and iPads are allowed but no laptops. There is also no Wi-Fi on site. There is definitely some down time throughout the day - sometimes up to 2-3 hours at a time, depending on the day.

    During these down times, I try to be productive and use my iPhone 6s to do research for my film projects or watch Vimeo shorts to study what's out there, or send emails related to my projects. I use Adobe Lightroom as well and occasionally edit photos on the mobile app to pass the time. It can be an extremely productive down time if used wisely. As you might guess, with an iPhone this can be cumbersome to the point where I lose motivation and simply scroll instagram or the New York Times.


    An iPad seems worth the investment but I'm stumped on which model, storage, etc. I love the idea of the iPad Pro with the keyboard + pen but that comes in at $1400 new and I'm also staring at a $3000 laptop purchase in the next 3-6 months.

    Thanks for your thoughts!

  2. #2
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?
    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
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    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, Numerous iPods, Mojave
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    I don't know which iPad Pro you're looking at or how much storage it has, but unless it's top of the line including cellular, it's not going to cost $1400.

    I purchased a 10.5" iPad Pro with the Apple Smart Keyboard, WiFi only, 64GB. But that's based on my personal usage and travel since that's all I need. I can also use the iPad in lieu of my Mac but it depends on what I'm doing.

    For what you mentioned above, it might be better to purchase a 13" MacBook Pro fully loaded. Video editing and photo editing usually requires more power and speed which the best iPad Pro can not duplicate. If you're considering a $3K laptop in the next 3 to 6 months, you may as well sprout for it now rather than later.

  3. #3
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?

    Member Since
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    Not sure if you read my post but I am looking for something to use in these work situations where I need cellular connectivity and am not allowed to take a laptop in but am allowed to take an iPad in.

    I'm getting a 15" fully loaded MBP regardless. Just looking for best iPad option for my nuanced situation.

  4. #4
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?
    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
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    Your Mac's Specs
    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, Numerous iPods, Mojave
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    In the work I was involved in for the government we weren't allowed to take anything into our work area. But I find it a bit strange that an iPad would be allowed but not a portable computer?

    I can only recommend a 2017 iPad Pro either 10.5 or 12 inch. Get one with cellular capability, and for video work you'll need a large amount of storage. Include the pencil, smart keyboard, back cover, and you probably will approach $1400.

  5. #5
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?

    Member Since
    Apr 04, 2012
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    Your Mac's Specs
    iPhone 4S iPod Nano 6th Gen MacBook Pro (2011) -OS: OS X v.10.6.8 -Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5
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    Happy to elaborate on the work situation in a PM if you're super curious. That wasn't the intended focus of this post.

    I do appreciate your thoughts. Interesting that you recommend the 2017 over the 2016. Is it really that much (+$500) better? I've whittled down my choices to either:
    2016 9.7" 128gb ($525 refurbished) + Smart Keyboard ($74 refurbished) + Smart Pencil ($85) = $684
    or
    2017 10.5" 256gb ($929 new) + Smart Keyboard ($160 new) + Smart Pencil ($85 refurb) = $1174

  6. #6
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?
    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
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    Your Mac's Specs
    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, Numerous iPods, Mojave
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    No need to elaborate, I fully understand about certain work conditions and rules.

    I stand by my recommendation for the 2017 model iPad Pro. Both Macworld and MacLife Magazines have picked the 2017 10.5" iPad Pro as their Editor's Choice. My iPad Pro is faster than my iMac (I own the 10.5" model) on my home network. I can use it to do most of the things that I do on my iMac. (2013 27" iMac) There are some things that are best done on a regular computer - like working on long documents in MS Word as an example.

    The Smart Keyboard you show above is a must in my opinion. I have that same keyboard and it's a pleasure using it. Logitech also makes a very nice smart keyboard for the iPad Pro which even sports backlighted keys and is a bit less expensive. I know nothing at all about the Smart Pencil since I do not own one.

    The 2017 iPad Pro has a faster processor than the 2016 9.7" model and also has a better display. You can compare specs on the Apple site if you want.

    You can't go wrong with either pick, but you probably will be much happier with the 2017 10.5" iPad Pro. Although your wallet will suffer somewhat.

  7. #7
    Considering iPad as a productivity supplement - Model/Size suggestions?
    IWT's Avatar
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    I, also, have the 2017 10.5 inch iPad Pro (256GB) plus the Apple Pencil.

    I agree with our Administrator that a Smart Keyboard is likely to be essential in your line of work - and it appears you need Cellular connectivity as well. Not a cheap package.

    But iOS 11 has, in my view, transformed the iPad Pro and, together with the Pencil, makes for a first class "working" machine.

    Tapping the Pencil on the Locked Screen, immediately brings up notes. Which is great for that need-to-note-that-now moment.

    Notwithstanding my appalling writing, my notes are searchable - the big secret is to add an easily remembered set of letters/numbers at either the beginning or the end of your note. Make them large & obvious.

    For example: GS1 could mean Gear Shift 1 and any other Gear Shift notes get a 2, 3 etc. CH1 could be cylinder head. I'm making all this up because you say you are a mechanic. You get the idea.

    When you search, it will easily recognise the GS1, CH1 etc even though your writing may be indecipherable.

    Ian
    Ian

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