iPad mini Is the retina screen on the new mini really worth £110?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Lexical, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. Lexical macrumors regular

    Nov 8, 2011
    Just wanted to know peoples thoughts on this...

    Im in the market for an iPad Mini, but i can't help but notice you can buy the current (old) model for £209 on the refurb store. Is the retina screen and A7 really worth £110 extra...?

    Im planning to get one just for watching stuff on netflix when I'm away from home and general web browsing. I know how nice the retina screen is and I've spent some time in store with the current non-retina model and it is noticeable, just don't know if its £110 noticeable...

    Not sure what to do!
  2. Lunfai macrumors 65816


    Nov 21, 2010
    I'd say yes. For general web browsing, not only do you get the added benefit of a retina screen, but you'll also get MIMO technology which will mean that you will be able to load pages faster. The A7 is also a tremendous boost from the A5, since it means that processing power will be two generations stronger. But ofcourse, Retina is such a difference imo, and if you can afford it? Treat yourself.
  3. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a


    May 1, 2006
    New Zealand
    Depends what you're after. I've been running a non-retina mini for over a year and the screen hasn't bothered me. Browsing with Safari can be a pain for some sites but that is more to do with the sites not being optimised for a tablet well and choosing much too small fonts for my eyes. Safari doesn't let you put a limit on the smallest fonts it will display unfortunately. I've mostly switched to apps for the sites I frequent because they give you more control over the presentation and touch control is much easier. Safari is a nice to have but I don't use it anything like as much as I used to on my old iPad 1 back in the day because then you pretty much had to use a web browser. Now, not so much. iOS7 comes with features like dynamic type for apps that support it which allows you to set the fonts to be bigger than they would otherwise be.

    Given all that, the standard mini screen is perfectly passable and you save a heap of money. Sure, you don't get the A7 chip but you're also not working the A5 as hard since it only has to deal with a quarter of the pixels that the retina iPad does. My feeling is I'm going to treat the retina mini like the iPad 3 was - a first attempt to squeeze retina into the device and let other early adopters pay the price and have the usual list of issues (heat, dead pixels, light leakage, image persistence and so on) until the device production has settled down. I usually stick with an iPad for a couple of years before an upgrade anyway and I bought the mini knowing the screen wasn't retina but it has other features that made a big difference over the iPad 1 such as speed and lightness. Next year, or maybe the year after I'll move on. For the moment I don't think you can do much better than the standard mini if you want an iPad and want it on a budget and I've bought lots of stuff from the refurb store because I'm never keen to be on the cutting edge. Let those with deeper pockets do that.
  4. Lexical thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 8, 2011
    Thanks for the reply, useful information.

    I did actually buy an iPad 3, but i sold it after a few months because i couldn't stand it. Was so heavy and just bulky and i didn't find a use for it. But i love the size and weight of the mini. I am a bit loathed to spend £320 on it as it seems a bit much when you can get a Nexus 7 for £200. But i would rather stay within the apple ecosystem as I'm not that big a fan of android...

    They aren't in stock on the refurb store at the moment anyway so i can't do anything about it right now. I do think though that the A5 is a bit underpowered in this day and age... Im not sure how it runs iOS7 but of course it won't be as good as an A7.

    So difficult to decide....
  5. fatalle macrumors newbie

    Nov 13, 2011
    Yes, there is a big jump in specs. Totally worth the money.

    Retina vs non-Retina display
    A7 vs A5 chip
    Better wifi tech for the mini Retina
  6. Zepaw macrumors 65816


    Apr 18, 2010
    Yes. It's like a different device. I didn't get an original mini because the screen just didn't hit the quality level I expect note from a tablet.
  7. patseguin macrumors 68000


    Aug 28, 2003
    Retina on the mini is definitely worth it. I used my mini mainly because of the thinness and lightness but the non-retina turned me off. It will be perfect and worth the money for retina.
  8. mcdj macrumors G3


    Jul 10, 2007
    This. You can't focus on just one of the upgrades and attach the full upgrade price to that one spec.
  9. Z3man macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2012
    If you buy from Tesco's there is a £30 voucher code so the difference will only be £80, i think it's definitely worth £80 extra.
  10. EM2013 macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2013
    Heck no, save your money and buy the regular mini. Nothing is wrong with its screen and it's not slow either. I have the mini and I enjoy it a lot. Also I have absolutely no plans on getting the "retina" version.
  11. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a


    May 1, 2006
    New Zealand
    I've got iOS 7 on mine and it runs very well. Certainly better than it runs on my old iPhone 4. Biggest improvement is now iPhone apps run at their retina resolution on the iPad so iPhone apps look much improved than on earlier versions of iOS.

    I definitely wouldn't rush to get a retina mini. Let the whole thing shake out because there will be problems as there always are with a new version. The nice thing about the original mini was it was just a smaller iPad 2 so it runs cool, the screen is way better than the resolution would have you believe it could be. The A5 is a die shrunk version which is how it gets away with so little power while still having good performance. The iPad 3 struggled with the A5X because it wasn't enough for the retina screen which is why the iPad 4 got the A6X and iPad Air/retina mini have the A7 so don't compare any experience with an iPad 3 versus what to expect with a mini.
  12. Nightarchaon macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    Personally I can't see a difference between the mini I own and the retina screens, but then I use my mini at a distance of greater than 3 inches from my nose .. Retina to me on the ipad is like gold plated audio cables, a useless additional expense that people who buy and demand it say they can see (or hear) a difference when really only o.ooo1% of the population have good enough eyesight (or hearing) to notice a difference .

    I don't wear glasses, and last sight check says I don't need them, so I'm not buying into this need for retina stuff, it's just the new monster cables scam in an apple wrapper
  13. QuarterSwede macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2005
    Colorado Springs, CO
    This is total bunk. There is a massive difference if you're used to a retina level screen already.
  14. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

    May 1, 2009
    yeah, i'm going to have to agree with our friend the swede here. This is nonsense.
  15. Z3man macrumors 6502a

    Feb 19, 2012
    Completely flawed analogy, are you being serious.
  16. MattZani macrumors 68030


    Apr 20, 2008
    Everyone I know can tell the difference, even people who do need glasses. It's annoying how ignorantly wrong you are.
  17. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Apr 3, 2011
    London, UK.
    Absolute rubbish. The difference between non-retina and retina is like night and day.
  18. foobi macrumors regular

    Sep 14, 2012
    Haha are you serious? You have no idea what you are talking about...
  19. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    I asked my eyes if I should upgrade my mini to an rMini. They both voted please and yes.
  20. Nightarchaon macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    actually as its a subjective experience and im saying I don't see a difference between the two, id say i know exactly what im talking about :D


    so no difference at all except the backlight :rolleyes: I find that resolution doesn't drop when the sun goes down :D


    I find it funny how you can say its arrogant that i see no difference, its not arrogance, its FACT, sure if i hold it at an unrealistically close distance to my face i can see the difference, but at the distance at which i use the device, the difference is non-existent.

    Its like the difference between 720p and 1080p is not noticeable if your sat 60ft away from the screen (Heck at that distance 480p would look as good as 1080p) the retina iPad mini looks no different from the non-retina at a distance from my head i normally hold a book, and is therefore not a feature that's of any use, its just an unnecessary drain on battery and processing power that could have been used to better the device in other ways, or bring the cost down.
  21. scupking macrumors 6502a

    Dec 14, 2010
    It's a night and day difference. The iPad 3.4 and air have an amazing screens. The new mini will have even more of an amazing screen!
  22. ditzy macrumors 68000


    Sep 28, 2007
    If someone offered you a refurb iPad 2 or a brand new iPad air, and the difference in price was £110. Which would you buy?
  23. x-evil-x macrumors 68040


    Jul 13, 2008
    the typical viewing distance for an iPad is 15" at that level you can definitely notice a difference in screen quality. i can see it up to a few feet away how awful the screen is on the mini and iPad 2(only after owning a retina iPad).
    compare the retina mini to a normal mini when it comes out. if you can't see a difference you might want to get your eyes checked out again.
  24. syd430 Guest


    Maybe if you had a retina screen you would know you're typing o's instead of 0's.
  25. Donka macrumors 68020


    May 3, 2011
    Comparing new prices at launch, the difference is only £50. Definitely worth it in my opinion given the internal specs are likely to be very similar or identical to the Air.

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