Ipad 1, 2, 3G, No-3G, Big or Small?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Bibblejw, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. Bibblejw macrumors newbie

    Dec 22, 2009
    Ok, I'm aware that this has been asked a few times, but I'm trying to get some specific answers with regards to trade-offs.

    Firstly, what will I use it for? Generally, some reading, and reference, gaming (do a bit on the iPhone, but the larger screen usually makes all the difference), general entertainment on train journeys, etc. note-taking in meetings and the suchlike.

    Now, looking at a specific price bracket, there are 3 options within about £20 of each other:
    64GB iPad 1 Wi-Fi only
    32GB iPad 1 WiFi + 3G
    16GB iPad 2 Wi-Fi only

    Generally, my feelings go towards higher capacity, as I tend to shove as much media on the device as I can manage, to give me some choice when I need it, however, I'm not seeing a huge reason to keep music and audiobooks on it, as it'll be difficult to listen to on the move.

    The 3G option in itself is not a great amount of use to me (at uni, so the only time I'm out of wifi, I'm generally out of mobile signal too), but the GPS would be quite nice, especially as TomTom are bringing out an iPad update in the near future.

    The new hardware is shiny, and I'm not sure how many of the features of iOS 5 will be limited on the iPad 1. Does the added speed make much of a difference to general usability? It'll at least future-proof it for a while.

    As you might see, I'm a little torn between the models, each having their own unique pulls for me. Can anyone give some first-hand advice as to how they fair in real-world usage?
  2. Hellhammer Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 10, 2008
    What are the prices? iPad 2 is a different machine and the speed is good in terms of future-proofing (should be supported for longer time in terms of OS updates). Then again, if the price difference is huge and higher capacity is preferred, then the first gen should be fine.
  3. Bibblejw thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 22, 2009
    The prices are:
    64GB iPad 1 Wifi - £379
    32GB iPad 1 Wifi+3G - £399
    16GB iPad 2 Wifi - £399

    My main question is whether the speed will make the apps better to use than just resorting to watching whatever videos I've got on there all the time.

    I'll admit that if the AirPlay mirroring works with the UK TV sites (iPlayer, iTV player, etc.) then that might just clinch it. It's one of the many failings of the AppleTV in the UK.
  4. Paulywauly macrumors 6502a


    Sep 26, 2009
    Durham, UK
    From my experience (as an owner of an iPad 1 wifi-64GB who has also used iPad 2s) id only get the 3G if you are sure you are going to need it, there is the extra ongoing cost and battery life performance to consider. I remember being tempted by it too for the convenience but It sounds like you have wifi most places you go, so unless this satnav you mention is a deal breaker id probably skip it. If you ever needed 3G you can buy an external mifi router in the future.

    Similar story with storage capacity. I was worried 64GB was not going to be enough, but despite syncing a few hundred songs and a gigabytes of apps/games i still have about 40GB left after a year and a half. Cloud storage/streaming systems really do come into their own on iPads. There are a many different ways to stream music/videos/documents/pictures which require little to no storage space at all and work very well, then there's iCloud too which will also save a tonne of space.

    There is a performance difference between the first and second gen models, and no doubt this will appear more apparent with IO5. Everything is just that little faster on iPad2, web pages render faster, gaming is smoother etc. If gaming performance is important to you i'd recommend an iPad2 over first Gen. It will most likely be supported by Apple for longer too.

    Choice is yours though in the end, only you can decide what works best for you.
  5. Bibblejw thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 22, 2009
    Thanks for your perspective. I know it's my decision, I'm just trying to get a bit more information to try and make sure that I make the right one.

    The 3G was only really included because it's in the bracket, and there is a point to it, but I think that the sacrifice of either the performance or storage (depending on which of the others I err towards).

    From what you're saying the performance difference is somewhat visible, and I'm not averse to lobbing the media on a streaming server. Not entirely sure how iCloud will affect my library, as most of it isn't through iTunes (and I'll pass on letting Apple rifle through my collection until the tech is tested by a few more people).

    My main issue was things like videos for train journeys, but I think that the 16GB should be sufficient for me, when I decide to bite the bullet, at least.
  6. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    I'd get the 16GB iPad 2, especially since iCloud is there to store media and stuff you don't use that often ;)
  7. brucem91 macrumors 6502

    Dec 9, 2009
    According to the first post you say you already have an iPhone. Are you willing to consider tethering from your iPhone to a wifi iPad. From what I understand tethering turns out to be cheaper in the long run, at least with the prices I see in the US. With tethering, you can save money by getting a wifi-only model, and I think the monthly bill will be a few bucks cheaper as well.

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