Oldest iPad worth getting?

Discussion in 'iPad Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by macstatic, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. macstatic macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    Norway
    #1
    I want to buy a second hand iPad and wonder what the oldest (meaning lowest costing) one worth getting? I know Apple as well as the app-makers lock constantly people out because their device is too old to run the latest iOS (this happens to me all the time with my 4th generation iPod Touch, which by the way is still going strong!).

    The bottom line: I don't want to pay more than necessary (I don't need a super high-resolution display or the "pro" pen feature) but also don't want to run into "needs iOS xxx which won't run on this iPad). I'll be using it mostly for reading stuff (eBooks, PDFs etc.) but also different apps of course.

    Another thing: is there a feature comparison/overview of all the different iPads available somewhere?
     
  2. BugeyeSTI macrumors 68030

    BugeyeSTI

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    #2
    I’d say a 32gb wifi 2017 iPad if you want new or a used Air2. Both of these will be upgradable for awhile
     
  3. SigEp265 macrumors 6502

    SigEp265

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    #3
    My vote is for Air 2 ... Or if the price is right 9.7" iPad Pro
     
  4. BugeyeSTI macrumors 68030

    BugeyeSTI

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    #4
    I would of thrown the 9.7 pro in there but, the OP said he didn’t want any high end features so I’m sure Apple Pencil, Smart Keyboard, 4 speakers, tru tone would be overkill for just reading books and surfing the internet..
     
  5. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #5
    Well, I'm open for all suggestions. I guess that with a Pro I could also use it for stuff like drawing/writing notes (I suppose that's a lot quicker than typing them in, more like taking notes on real paper perhaps?), and by investing a bit more I would also have a more lasting device.
    As for memory: 32GB was suggested above -is it easy to fill up 32GB with apps, ebooks etc. or would that suffice for most people for day to day "general" use?

    The Air 2, 2017 model and Pro has been suggested. Are there some models I should definitely stay away from (specific models, memory configurations etc.)?
     
  6. Falhófnir macrumors 68040

    Falhófnir

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    #6
    I’d plump for a 2017 ipad, the best value the line has ever seen and can be had brand new for near what a refurb Air 2 32gb costs (you really don’t want 16gb at this point, so avoid that if you go for an older model). The 2017 will probably get at least another years iOS support over an air 2, it’s much more powerful on single core performance, slightly ahead on multi core, a lot more powerful on the gpu side, and doesn’t suffer the sub par battery life of the air 2. The only downside the newer model has over the air 2 is the non laminated display, but this is hardly a deal breaker.

    I’d also say avoid minis at this point.
     
  7. macstatic, Feb 11, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018

    macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #7
    Is the iPad 2017 what is currently sold as the "iPad" (as opposed to the "iPad Pro" and "iPad Mini 4") in the online Apple store?
    I see they're only configured as 32GB or 128GB and 64GB is gone. Will 32GB suffice for most people?

    What do you mean by a "laminated display"? A protective layer of some sorts making it more prone to damage or reflection?
     
  8. BugeyeSTI macrumors 68030

    BugeyeSTI

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    #8
    A laminated display has the lcd attached directly to the glass which makes it look like you are touching the icons directly. Non laminated has the lcd not touching the glass directly and the icons look suspended under the glass. Some also complain that when tapping on the screen, non laminated has a hollow sound do to the space between the lcd and glass. Laminated displays are used on the more premium iPads, the 2017 iPad was designed to be a cost friendly iPad and certain features had to be left out to keep the price down.
     
  9. flaubert macrumors regular

    flaubert

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    #9
    I tend to agree that if you're going for ultimate longevity then the currently selling iPad 2017 is your best bet. And if you're trying to balance longevity and price then it is a reasonable choice there, too. On the other hand, if rock-bottom price is a major consideration, I'm going to come out of left field and suggest the original iPad Air. It is not as computationally powerful as either the iPad Air 2 or one of the iPad Pro models (not even close!), but it is still a 64 bit processor. My observation over the past 5 years or so is Apple will carry along older models for a good long while, usually even beyond the willingness of customers to put up with the slowdowns introduced by bloated system upgrades, so long as the product is within the same architecture (in this case, 64 bit). So if you try out an iPad Air on iOS 11 and find the price attractive and the performance acceptable, then it might be worth going that route for a few years (probably not too many years, however). The other thing you have to be willing to put up with an original iPad Air is lack of Touch ID, which was introduced starting with the iPad Air 2.

    As for feature comparison, EveryMac is a great resource:

    http://www.everymac.com/

    If you go into the iPad section and want to compare two consecutively released iPads, open the page for the later one and it will have a link telling you what was changed from the preceding model.
     
  10. PHILIP1193 macrumors regular

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    Dec 1, 2007
    #10
    I just bought an iPad mini 4 from apple refurbished. As you’d expect for an apple refurb it’s like new. New battery, 1 year warranty and a new back.

    Despite being a a8 processor it’s real snappy on iOS 11. I turned off the app motion animations and installed anafari adblocker and now it’s perfect. I’m the uk it was £260 so cheap and fast. Plus the mini for me is the perfect size.
     
  11. Falhófnir, Feb 13, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018

    Falhófnir macrumors 68040

    Falhófnir

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    #11
    Yeah it’s marketed as just the iPad (officially called iPad 5th generation I believe). 32 should be reasonably roomy for most people who don’t intend absolutely cramming it full of apps, and especially media (one season of game of thrones in HD is ~25gb for example). 16 I would say is tight for even really quite basic users, so do try and avoid that if possible.

    @BugeyeSTI gave a pretty good explanation - it’s just about eliminating the small air gap between the LCD and the glass sheet you touch. It’s something you won’t notice unless you have two iPads side by side to demonstrate, I really wouldn’t worry about it, the screen on the 2017 looks really good.

    Edit to add: Just looked at Apple refurbed store and 32gb 5th gens can be had for £289 (I assume a similar price in USD) - if you can find the capacity/ colour combo you want, that’s a steal for a device that will last you for years to come.
     
  12. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #12
    No refurb options here in Norway unfortunately, but hopefully a used one will pop up for not too much money.
    Glad to hear the LCD lamination likely won't be an issue. A faster processor must surely make more difference than getting an older, slower model with a laminated display.
     
  13. Brenster macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #13
    The 2017 iPad has an A9 CPU with 2GB of RAM, so will likely see plenty of iOS updates to come. An older machine will obviously get less support for versions of iOS to come.

    I had a 128GB 2017 iPad before I needed Pro features and capabilities and upgraded to the iPP 10.5. The 2017 iPad is an amazing bit of kit for the money. The non-laminated display didn’t really bother me too much, whilst the speed and performance relative to the iPad Mini 2 I’d upgraded from was more than welcome.

    Not sure what the Norwegian pricing is like for the 2017 iPad. The £339 GBP price for the 32GB 2017 iPad would buy you a rock bottom Windows laptop, with slow performance and little chance of the battery lasting beyond 18 months.

    At the old £419 entry price for the iPad Air 2 I’d say look for either a refurb or second hand device. But at £319 for a 32GB entry level device, together with future iOS support, I’d suggest buying the 2017 iPad new. As a former owner of one, I was entirely happy with it.
     
  14. JPack macrumors 68040

    JPack

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    Mar 27, 2017
    #14
    Get the iPad (2017, 5th generation).

    Anything older like the Air 2 and mini 4 use older processors A8X and A8. Those processors are not expected to support future iOS versions after iOS 12.
     
  15. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #15
    Thanks. I'll see what comes up in the 2nd hand market. Sometimes you can get luckly and find something brand new because the guy has changed his mind or something.

    By the way, is there a way to limit app updates when they no longer will work with the latest iOS the device han handle?
    I personally am not so concerned about "the latest and greatest" as long as it works as intended, but recently an app in my 4th gen. iPod Touch refused to work! I do regularly make backups in iTunes (as part of the sync process) and could likely restore it again, but wouldn't that replace everything else (my notes, calendar updates, contact updates etc.) with whatever I had at that time?
     
  16. Glideslope macrumors 603

    Glideslope

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    #16
    The developer is responsible to update their apps. If it’s not functional due to their abandonment it’s done. ;)
     
  17. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #17
    Is there a way I can get the old version back (from my local backups in iTunes on my Mac) without overwriting the newer data (i.e. things I've added in my contacts, calendar, notes etc.) I now have on the device? Or doesn't it back up apps at all?
     
  18. Glideslope macrumors 603

    Glideslope

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    #18
    How do you backup? :apple:
     
  19. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #19
    When running iTunes on my Mac with the iPod Touch attached I'm able to make a backup.

    ipodtouch_backup.png

    I've never tried restoring so I don't know how that works, but I'm hoping the app that no longer works with iOS 6.1.6 (the latest iOS I can use on that device) is still somewhere in those backups and can be restored, but without overwriting all my other stuff which has later been updated (contacts, notes, calendar and so on).
     
  20. macstatic thread starter macrumors 65816

    macstatic

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    #20
    I figured it out!
    Apparently it's possible do re-download any app you've installed in the past, but.... you have do it from the iPod/iPad/iPhone! I've previously tried re-installing via iTunes on my Mac, but that doesn't give me an older version. By re-installing directly from the iOS device I'm told that the current version won't work on my device but I can choose to download an older version if I want. So all I need to remember now is NOT to upgrade certain apps any more.
     

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19 February 8, 2018