Note taking and annotating apps??

Discussion in 'iPad' started by stefc93, Aug 24, 2011.


Which note taking and annotation app should I get?

  1. Notes Plus App (note taking app)

    11 vote(s)
  2. Penultimate (note taking app)

    6 vote(s)
  3. Jotnote pro (note taking app)

    1 vote(s)
  4. Notability (note taking app)

    5 vote(s)
  5. Notetaker HD (note taking app)

    8 vote(s)
  6. PDF Expert (annotation app)

    2 vote(s)
  7. GoodReader (annotation app)

    17 vote(s)
  8. iAnnotate (annotation app)

    6 vote(s)
  1. stefc93, Aug 24, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2011

    stefc93 macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    I am about to start college very soon and heard of some good note taking and PDF annotating apps. However, I am pretty confused on which to get. Most are about the same price (give or take a dollar or two) and most receive positive feedback/raves. I currently have Evernote. It would also be nice to get a annotation app that I could take a picture of a handout and save it to that app for marking up and annotating.

    So far I have received these recommendations:

    Note Taking: Notes Plus App, Penultimate, Jotnote pro, Notability, Notetaker HD (can't find Jotnote pro)

    Downloading PDF's and annotating: PDF Expert, GoodReader, iAnnotate

    I have heard good things about GoodReader but also about PDF Expert. I really need to make a decision and purchase/download one note taking app and one PDF/annotation app.
  2. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
  3. mgipe macrumors demi-god


    Oct 6, 2009
    Goodreader is mandatory!

    Notetaker HD is my recommendation for the best handwritten note taker. I've tried a lot of them, and this one was the best at duplicating pen and paper note taking.
  4. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Can you type in Notetaker HD?
  5. xjosh macrumors regular

    Jan 7, 2011
  6. Kyotoma macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2010
    Carnegie and Ontario
    Pages and/or Evernote. You have neither on the poll so I'll just post them here.
  7. HengenJL macrumors 6502a


    May 27, 2007
    Rochester, NY
  8. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Already have Evernote. Will have to put it to the test in class.
  9. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    Yes. Selection of the input method is a menu choice at the top of the screen.
  10. porcupine8 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 2, 2011
    One important piece of info needed to answer this question is whether you want to be able to handwrite your notes. I said Notes Plus, but if you don't need to handwrite things then there are probably better ones for all-typed notes. Whereas others (like the abovementioned Pages and Evernote) don't allow handwriting at all.

    Also, I'm really liking the free Noterize for quick scribble-on-a-PDF tasks.
  11. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    I think having the ability to handwrite notes with a stylus would be nice. But it's not necessary.

    So Noterize is a PDF mark up and annotation app? Any good?
  12. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Anyone else have any opinions/ideas on the apps mentioned above?
  13. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Can anyone recommend a stylus that is good for writing equations and drawing diagrams and taking notes?
  14. johnnyturbouk macrumors 68000


    Feb 9, 2011
    on the yellow [oled] brick road to tech nirvana.

    Im totally in love with evernote, thus would like to find a decent stylus to hand draw diagrams and insert them as pdfs
  15. Tobster3 macrumors 6502

    Jun 3, 2010
    South Korea
  16. PracticalMac macrumors 68030


    Jan 22, 2009
    Houston, TX
    I only have 1 of the list, and I do not know the others.

    perhaps you should ask reviews then ask which you should get?
  17. bigbigbob macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2007
    The Bamboo Stylus is my favorite hands down. I have tried several other and this one is the best for me so far. It's a little more expensive than some, but well worth it IMHO.
  18. porcupine8 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 2, 2011
    I have a targus stylus. I was wary of the rounded tip at first, but I've learned that it's really the software, not the stylus, that defines your handwriting experience. Given the big tips on all capacitative styli, a program with zoomed-in writing is an absolute necessity. Personally, notes plus is my fave for that.
  19. saberahul macrumors 68040

    Nov 6, 2008
    I've tried NoteTaker HD but like the UI and efficiency of Notes Plus a lot more. If you wait for the right time, you can get it for sale for 99¢ and it is def. worth it. In terms of PDF annotations, GoodReader works the best with different engine options. PDF Expert isn't bad really; but GoodReader is better. Only advantage of PDF Expert over GR is that when you turn a document into landscape, it automatically fits width to screen (I think the latest GR added this). Lastly, GR is constantly updated and so is Notes Plus.
  20. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    Unfortunately, you're right. The capacitive screen on the iPad places major limitations on the precision and functionality of note taking. There are differences in the quality of styluses, imo, but there are inherent limits on both styluses and software given the hardware Apple has used on the iPad.

    I'm interested in hearing how the new Lenovo ThinkPad Stylus with a built-in stylus and pressure sensitive hardware/software works.
  21. bocomo macrumors 6502

    Jun 29, 2007
    New York
    i've been trying a lot of them and i agree that Note Taker is good

    my favorite is neu.Notes

    also neu.Annotate (for PDFs)
  22. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Do you (or anyone) know if I can take a photo of a handout and save it in GoodReader as a PDF for marking up/annotating? That way I wouldn't have to sort papers in binders and folders. I think there's an app with this feature but I'm not sure of the name.
  23. palpatine macrumors 68040

    May 3, 2011
    sure. take a look at my thread somewhere in this forum about digitizing stuff. i recommend something like scansnap if you are doing this on a regular basis. goodreader will mark it up.
  24. stefc93 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    Already saw that thread (among your other ones) last night. :)

    But I'd just prefer to take a pic. of the handout via the iPad's camera and then just import it into GoodReader.
  25. palpatine macrumors 68040

    May 3, 2011
    a picture is a great idea. it's just that the quality can be rather disappointing. i have used the ipod4 on occasion, but prefer a digital camera. if it's worth saving, it's worth doing well. you might want to give a try to apps like scannerpro. i prefer to touch up photos with that.

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