All iPads iPad Air or Retina Mini?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by petvas, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. petvas macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #1
    I am currently in a small dilemma, which device I should keep, and I would like to hear the thoughts of others about it.
    Let me first try to explain to you my setup:
    At home I have a 27" iMac that I use as my main computer. My iMac is my digital hub and acts as a file server among other things.
    I also have a 11" Macbook Air that I use when I sit on my couch, or at bed, and of course when traveling. I always felt somehow limited by just having an iPad instead of a laptop, running OS X. It's not that I do complicated stuff when on the road, but I want to feel that I can do everything if the need arises.
    I also want to have an iPad for reading books, light internet browsing, twitter and stuff like that..For gaming I use my iMac at home and I have no interest in playing on my iPads (but from time to time I do use it for casual games, maybe 2-3 times a year).
    In last October I purchased an iPad Air Wifi only with 128GB. I love the screen and I appreciate the screen estate.
    However, after I got my Macbook Air this January, I felt that it is just too much to have a laptop and a full sized iPad with me when traveling. Please also note that when I go to the office I have to use a Lenovo laptop :(
    At the office I take my Macbook Air with me and I would like to also have an iPad with me too.
    Carrying two laptops and an iPad Air around is not exactly nice, and my bag is heavy...
    I thought of replacing my iPad Air with a Retina Mini, so I got one this week, a Wifi only 32GB model.
    I like the small form factor but somehow the small text causes me eyestrain sometimes. I also can't seem to be able to forget the difference in screen quality between the Air and the Mini.
    What should I keep? The Air or the Mini? I really like having a small device that doesn't add up to the total weight I carry with me in my bag every time, but on the other hand I like the iPad Air's better screen. I can see the difference immediately.
    Should I just send the Mini back to Apple and keep the Air?
    I am open for your thoughts and suggestions. Thanks!
     
  2. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #2
    I don't know what work computer you have, but perhaps the issue isn't between the iPad and MacBook Air, it's your work computer?

    I use a ThinkPad X1 Carbon for work, and I carry an iPad Air.

    It's a very light solution; enough that I don't even noticed the iPad Air. I have a iPad mini, but simply put the iPad Air is light enough that I see no reason to use my iPad mini anymore.

    As for Macs, I travel frequently for work. I have to bring my ThinkPad, but since I tend to keep my work and personal things separate I carry my X1 Carbon, my 11" MacBook Air, and my iPad Air.

    It's not really a heavy solution.

    I know this may not be answer you're looking for, but perhaps consider a lighter work computer? I can see you enjoy your MacBook Air and iPad, so why give things up? Get yourself a lighter work computer, or just leave your work computer at work.


    Don't bother with the iPad mini—it causes you eye strain. That enough reason for me never to use it (you said it cause you eye strain, it does not cause me any).
     
  3. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #3
    It sounds like you've made up your mind already. The one thing you mentioned was the lighter weight of the iPad mini. Do you know what the weight difference is between the iPad Air and iPad mini is? It's only 4 ounces.
     
  4. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #4
    My work computer weighs more than 2Kgs...
    I work a lot from home too, so I have to take my work computer too all the time. I can't leave it at work, because my company doesn't offer any other option to connect from other computers...
    To be honest I prefer to use my Macbook Air for anything serious, so the Air's screen estate is not that important.
     
  5. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #5
    Still you said eye strain is an issue. Do you want to deal with that just over a few ounces of weight?

    It does sound like you're trying to justify the iPad mini which in case I would say go with what your heart tells you. Keep the iPad mini if you don't mind the eye strain.
     
  6. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #6
    Yes, it's not that big of a difference, but when using a device for many hours, even this small difference is important.
    I haven't made up my mind yet. Yesterday I wanted to keep my Air, now I want the Mini :)
    I still have time to think about it and unfortunately I cannot keep both, I can't afford it..

    ----------

    I would love to keep all devices :) These are our first world problems I guess..

    Maybe you are right and I am trying to justify the mini, mainly because I like the small form factor and it makes me feel I can use it like a PIM.
    The Air is also a great device and I love its amazing screen. The Mini is better for reading text though, since it offers more ppi.
     
  7. Ladybug macrumors 65816

    Ladybug

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    #7
    I got rid of my Mini due to eye strain. I don't find the weight difference enough to risk my eye sight. However only you can know how much your eyes are bothering you or not. Sounds like you prefer the smaller form factor and if its just for occasional use it might be alright. I use my iPad far too much so I got the Air. There is no right or wrong answer here, only what works for you.
     
  8. bevsb2 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    #8
    I get more eye strain at work from the pixilated text on my desktop computer than I do using my rMini. The Air is more comfortable to use however and I guess it depends on how long you plan to use the rMini when traveling. If it bothers your eyes using it for short periods, it is not the device for you.
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    If you're incurring eye strain from the mini, I'd not settle and live with the eye strain. Its not worth the headaches. It sounds like the Air or your MBA is a better choice for you, imo.
     
  10. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #10
    The problem is the small fonts on some websites, but if I zoom in then everything is ok. It depends on the app being used I suppose.
     
  11. Rodster macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    #11
    I always zoom in regardless. A small screen tablet is hard on the eyes regardless of who makes it. I usually zoom in my my full size iPad as well.

    When I zoomed in on the rMini it looked great.
     
  12. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #12
    Depending on the website I'll zoom in, some sites I don't need too. I've not noticed too much when I do, I guess its mostly second nature at this point
     
  13. j0nblayz macrumors member

    j0nblayz

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    #13
    I had the same issue with the rMini, I was getting slight eye strain, and thought it would get better, but got worse. I ended up returning and getting the air. Miss the rMini, but I'm happy I got the air.
     
  14. petvas, Jan 26, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2014

    petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #14
    I decided to keep the iPad Air and return the Mini. The eye strain bothers me. On top of that, when I am on the road I use my iPhone more. My iPad and Macbook I use only when I am at home and at the office, but almost never anywhere else.
    For this of you saying that the Mini's display is good: http://www.displaymate.com/Tablet_ShootOut_4.htm

    I can see the difference with my bare eyes, without even trying to concentrate on the colors. It is like night and day.
     
  15. Barhen macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    #15
    You obviously don't like the mini from what I read here. It's pretty clear that you want the Air.
     
  16. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #16
    I like the small form factor and the reduced weight. If it had the display quality of the air we wouldn't be having this discussion now :)
    I like both iPads but for me it doesn't make any sense to keep both, so I have to decide to keep one. Now I am testing the Mini again and trying to give it a last chance. Tonight I want to have a final decision, but for the moment the Air wins.
     
  17. Barhen macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    #17
    why bother, its a form of OCD not being able to stick with your decision of keeping the air. No offense.

    whats causing you the eye strain? did you bump up the font in settings? are you holding it in landscape mode?
     
  18. Angler macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    #18
    why would yo keep it if you think the mini doesn't have a good display?
     
  19. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #19
    What is OCD? :)

    I use it mainly in landscape mode. I think the eye strain comes from a combination of increased brightness on the Mini and smaller text, and yes I have increased text size, but that doesn't always help.

    ----------

    I want to like it, but Apple has made it difficult this time. If I hadn't seen the Air, I wouldn't have a problem with the display's quality, apart from the eye strain I am getting some times.
     
  20. Angler macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    #20
    thats the point, whats more important screen or form. i agree that the air has a better screen but you would never know if you didn't compare the two. so again its a value decision
     
  21. Rodster macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    #21
    Obsessive compulsive disorder
     
  22. bevsb2 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    #22
    I think I've seen this or a similar report before. I can't argue that the rMini has a display equal to the Air - it doesn't. But when not side by side with the Air it looks good to me. I much prefer the rMini screen size to the 7 inch tablets and of course ios. The new 7 inch Kindle Fire HDX has better color saturation, but the use of blue LEDs can result in a blue border around the screen primarily seen on a white screen and many have complained that this is a distraction when reading. I prefer the Air for the size and beautiful screen, but when leaving the house it is the rMini that I take with me. The mini exceeds in form factor. If you primarily use your iPad at home the Air is the tablet to keep.
     
  23. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #23
    It's not that I can't really decide, I will keep the Air and send the Mini back.

    Two things made this decision difficult:
    • The form factor of the mini
    • The higher dpi which makes text sharper on the Mini

    The Air is the one to keep, but I certainly understand if someone would prefer the mini. I mainly use my iPhone when on the road. I don't need a small device. The only thing is that having so many devices with me, adds up to the total weight I carry, so that's why I wanted to test the Mini and send the Air back. Of course the 135gr difference is nothing, so if I consider the pros and contras of each device, the Air wins for me. I wish though I could keep everything :)
     
  24. Barhen macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    #24
    Alright, take it from me who tried both. mini - air then back to the mini.
    The colors, I noticed brighter reds, and blues. I am not a photographer or use it as some kind of portfolio where color accuracy needs to be super accurate (btw Its not super accurate, its over saturated - too bright of the colors almost neon-like colors) and I should know.. I am a former graphic artist..

    I realized I liked the smaller form factor, and main use of it was the browser, and reading (lots of reading). The only thing the air had over it was slightly bigger screen and slightly better colors and was heavier. I know they made it much lighter this year (the air) but after holding it halfway through a movie on netflix, my arms were tired of holding it while with the mini I was able to hold it up for hours comfortably. At that point I realized the mini was a better decision for me.

    You need to figure out exactly what is causing you strain, because other than your bad eyes, most things are adjustable, brightness, font sizes.. remember everything is sharper on the mini so it cant be that.

    Good luck buddy.
     
  25. petvas thread starter macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #25
    I found this also: http://www.imore.com/ipad-air-vs-retina-ipad-mini-decision

    Makes a good reading I suppose :)

    Yes, you are right, the form factor and reduced weight are important things to consider.
     

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