All iPads Reading books retina mini vs air

Discussion in 'iPad' started by zaranoff, Nov 22, 2013.

  1. zaranoff macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2012
    So I looked at both the mini retina and air at the apple store today and could not decide wich one was more comfortable reading.

    I will use the ipad exclusively for reading but some email and web browsing as well. Movies I'll watch on my telly.

    They should really have a bed at the apple store so you could snuggle up and try the ipads hahaha! So wich one do you guys prefer for reading?

    Mini retina or air?
  2. bobby68 macrumors member

    Dec 28, 2009
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    The main reason why I use a mini over a full sized iPad is size. Commuting I can easily hold the mini with one hand and read my books.

    Traveling, I have it in a coat pocket, lying in bed or in recliner, its a lot easier to use the mini in extended periods. As with many other things YMMV :)
  4. ZBoater macrumors G3


    Jul 2, 2007
    Sunny Florida
    I used to like the Mini for bed as well, but it find myself using the Air in bed more. It's a matter of preference, really. I'm liking the bigger screen for extended use, so I'm learning to use 2 hands to hold and 1 hand to hold and 1 to type and touch the screen occasionally, and it's working out.
  5. Breitling65 macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2011
    Air for sure, no need of enlarging text all the time and scroll as much, also much better for eyes. It is thin and as light as nothing. I transferred all my readings to the Air, no papers at home now :)
  6. thelookingglass macrumors 68000

    Apr 27, 2005
    If you'll be reading primarily Kindle books then I'd argue that the Mini works fairly well just because of the smaller form factor and the adjustable text size within each book. For PDFs, the Air will probably be the better bet since the screen is closer to the size of A4 paper.
  7. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    If iPad:mini. But if those are your only uses a less expensive Kindle HDX might serve you just as we'll. iPad is so much more, but you pay for that expansiveness too. If not needed then poor $ spend.
  8. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

    Nov 9, 2013
    It's a matter of personal preference. I like the mini because it fits in my jacket pocket and goes everywhere with me, and never gets in my way. But there are times a larger screen would be nice. I read pdf documents on it all the time, and while it works fine for this task, I do sometimes end up adjusting the margins to get the text larger. Of course for kindle and epub books this isn't necessary. Only you can decide whether a larger screen or a more compact portable unit is more important to you.

    P.S. There are some great deals coming on Black Friday for the entry level Air.
  9. DaCurmudgen macrumors regular

    Aug 5, 2012
    I've used the full-sized iPad (iPad 3) and picked up the rMini because I felt that reading when commuting with the iPad 3 was hard to do, especially when using just one hand on a crowded subway. Clearly the Air has eliminated some of those issues, but I still find the rMini form factor more versatile for reading (in bed and on the go).

    In fact, since getting my rMini last week, I've read more and used it more than I ever did with my iPad 3. But if all you care about is reading and occasional web surfing, either iPad is overkill. I opted for the rMini because I wanted the app ecosystem and power of a full-sized iPad in a more portable form factor for easier reading and having it with me more often.

    Good luck.
  10. Fattytail macrumors 6502a

    Apr 11, 2012
    See, in crowded situations, I wouldn't even use an iPad. I'd just whip out my iPhone. That's the beauty of apps like Kindle and iBooks. Read on one and synced on all.

    I personally find the mini just not enough of a difference from my phone screen. If I want a tablet experience, I want a much bigger screen. Reading books and PDFs on something like the Air just feels so much nicer. Not to mention the fact that because it's bigger, I can stand it in different positions (without having to hold it) and still be able to read comfortably.
  11. caesarp macrumors 6502a

    Sep 30, 2012
    Since the average hard cover book weights about 1 pound (exactly the same as the Air), the Air is perfect as an e-reader.

    The Air gives you much more in both landscape and portrait mode on each page and seems more like a real book (particularly when holding in portrait mode).

    The mini is good if you need constant portability. Portability aside, the Air is a better reader IMHO.
  12. Ubele macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2008
    I've only owned the iPad 1 and iPad 4, and that's the way I've always used them. When I read in bed, on the couch, or in a chair, the bottom edge of the iPad is always resting on my lap or stomach. I've never found the size or weight to be uncomfortable, even for extended periods of use. As much as I like the idea of the mini for portability, I suspect I'll stick with the 9.7" version for the foreseeable future, especially since the Air is now smaller and lighter. Also, I use photography and music apps, and having things bigger on screen is sometimes helpful. But if I primarily used my iPad for reading, especially if I took public transportation to work and had to stand up a lot, as I used to do, then I'd probably go for the mini.
  13. dannynjoni macrumors regular

    Oct 14, 2010
    It's like choosing between paperback and hardcover.

    It's like choosing between paperback and hardcover. Is the Mini more comfortable? Well, yes, and no. It's easier to hold with one hand but the Air is most definitely easier on the EYES.

    I like reading hardcover books when I can for this reason but when I'm on the go portability becomes a little bit more important. When I had the iPad 3 I ended up reading most of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series on my iPhone 4s :). With my new Air it remains to be seen. It's pretty darn comfortable to hold for long periods though, at least naked without a case.

    One thing that's been pointed out here is the fact you can pick up wherever you left off on any of your devices. And with OSX Mavericks, even your home computer/laptop.

    EDIT: One thing I just have to add is if you are into photography at all this is where the Air absolutely excels IMO.
  14. DaCurmudgen macrumors regular

    Aug 5, 2012
    Really interesting thoughts and I can certainly appreciate your points. For me, the mini is the perfect paperback book size, which I am more likely to carry around with me vs. a hardcover or textbook. As is said in nearly every thread, it all depends on your preference and what you value. Clearly both options are good. For me, having it with me all the time is more important than a larger screen and richer color. Can't really lose no matter what you buy.
  15. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

    Nov 9, 2013
    When looking at a page of a book, I like to see and take in the whole page at once. To me, the Air display is a little too big for this, and the mini feels a little nicer. I'm near sighted and tend to hold reading material up close, so that might have something to do with my preference for the mini.
  16. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Oct 25, 2013
    And a paperback is around 300-350g. I prefer paperback to hardcover so I guess this is likely why I would prefer the rMini over the Air for reading, too.
  17. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Agree with all the comparisons between paperback and hardcover. I've always preferred hardcovers when portability wasn't an issue, which must be why I prefer the Air. But for reading ebooks, you can't go wrong with either the Air or mini. For websites and PDFs, the mini might require a bit more zooming and panning, depending on your eyesight.
  18. Amplelink macrumors 6502a

    Oct 8, 2012
    I don't think you can go wrong with either for reading books. But for stuff like web browsing, I'd think long and hard about the text size. It gets awfully small in portrait on a mini. Even in landscape, I find myself holding my mini pretty close to my face. Even though the mini doesn't weigh much, I find that position still puts a strain on my arms over time. The air is slightly better for that because i can rest it on something and still see text fairly clearly.

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