Should I get the iPad Pro 11 inch or the 2017 Pro 10.5 to replace my 3 year old Air 2??

Discussion in 'iPad' started by ShaunAFC3, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. ShaunAFC3, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019

    ShaunAFC3 macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2016
    Hey everyone, I am looking to get a new iPad for my 24th Birthday in late February to replace my iPad Air 2 64GB which I have had for over 3 years now and it is still going very good/strong and is very fast and is on IOS 9.3.4 but the battery is not as good compared to 3 years ago but I still can get a least 8/9 hours of screen on time on every single charge(100% to 5%).

    Since the new 2018 iPad Pro 11 inch model came out couple months ago, I really really wanted to buy the iPad Pro 2018 because it will definitely definitely be a massive massive upgrade in everything(bigger display, very fast/powerful, bigger battery, USB-C, lots lots more) and is so much more better tablet then my iPad Air 2. :D:D

    But it will be very very expensive in England where I live, from Currys(PC World) it will be about £1100 pounds for the 512gb model that I really really want but I will be still happy with 256GB one at about £920 which it still offers soo much more storage then the 64GB model. The 512GB one is really really ideal and would definitely definitely be my 1st choice.

    On the other hand though, I have been looking at the refurbished 2017 iPad Pro 10.5 models specifically the 256GB model on the Apple and Amazon refurbished websites, I have seen them go for about from £525 to £669 which I could save quite a bit of money if you ask me because I don't have that much money to begin with and is good value for money at those prices. :)

    The reason that I am looking at refurbished iPads, the Pro 10.5 model instead completely brand new ones because I am a bit hesitant paying full price(about £760 at Currys/PC World) only to get not the latest and greatest, not as good tech and I have heard from users that the Apple refurbished store are the absolutely the best out there and Amazon being a very close 2nd.

    But the thing that is turning me off big buying the Pro 10.5 inch model big big time that I feel it not that much of a upgrade compared to the 2018 IPad Pro 11 inch model coming from an iPad Air 2 and definitely won't be as good or awesome as the new 2018 iPad Pro 11 inch and plus I really really want to get the 2018 Pro 11 inch one a whole lot lot more then the 2017 Pro 10.5. :eek:

    I don't really know if I should get the iPad Pro 11 inch or the 2017 Pro 10.5 one??

    I need some good help to decide!!!

    What should I do?? Everyone Should I get the iPad Pro 11 inch or the 2017 Pro 10.5 to replace my 3 year old Air 2?? Or should I keep using my iPad Air 2 for another year before upgrading?? What would you do?? o_Oo_O

    I use my awesome iPad Air 2 every single day(I am a really heavy iPad user) and is my main/primary computer(I never ever use my Surface Pro 4 anymore now) and I just mainly use the Air 2 for media consumption things like watching YouTube videos, browsing the web, listening to music and playing the occasional game every now and again and that is pretty much it at the moment but in the past recently I have used the Air 2 for some basic photo editing a couple months ago which was good most of the time.

    So yeah if I get don't end up upgrading to a new iPad for my 24th Birthday in late February, then I would be still be happy to keep using the iPad Air 2 for another year before finally upgrading to a so much more better and awesome iPad. :)
  2. Freakonomics101 macrumors 68000


    Nov 6, 2014
    IMO, the 10.5 is a pretty big upgrade from the Air 2. The bezels on the 11” aren’t much smaller than the bezels on the 10.5. The screen on the 10.5 is just as great as the screen on the 11”. The A10X chip is still a beast and will provide years of outstanding performance.

    The 11” does not have OIS. Why? Not sure. But that’s definitely a turn off, but not for everyone. The tap to wake is a nice feature that I love on my iP10.

    The biggest upgrade from the 10.5 to the 11 is the screen.

    If you’re looking to save money, I recommend a refurbished 10.5 on Apple’s website and Apple’s website only. Do not trust any seller on Amazon when it comes to refurbished Apple products.
  3. Gadget-Man macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2009
    Pro, definitely. I have the 12.9” and love it.
  4. DiamonDecoden macrumors 6502


    May 26, 2011
    If you don't need the latest / greatest. 10.5 will do perfectly.
    The bad thing about getting the latest / greatest Apple Tech is 1. cost 2. not many accessories that's out 3. new form factor may spell new issues
    10.5 is really great. lower cost and you can do the same gestures as the new ipad pro.
  5. Greenmeenie macrumors 65816


    Jan 14, 2013
    Well, as an 11” ipad pro owner myself, i can’t recommend it enough. Its beautiful, very powerful, and totally awesome. Lol. So yeah, i am biased. Like you, I also use it as my main computer. But unlike you, i do use it for heavy video & photo editing. Don’t get me wrong, it also is a great media consumption device if thats what you mainly use it for...although as you said, a very expensive one.

    It definitely is lust worthy, but i am going to say for what you want, perhaps the 10.5” might be a better choice? An even more cost effective choice would be to go with the 2018” ipad...or perhaps wait until March for the update to it. Have you thought about that?

    I don’t want to say whats best for you, cause only you know that. But those are my thoughts on the subject.
  6. PilotWoo macrumors regular

    Jul 14, 2006
    Get the non Pro iPad. You won't notice any difference in performance and its £319, and supports the pencil. Its the best iPad on sale. Buy it from John Lewis and you get 2-3 years warranty too.
  7. newellj, Jan 8, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019

    newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    I agree with this post, and I will say this:

    I decided to part with my truly beloved Air 2 after trying a Pro 11" in the store. I was uncertain about that up front, but the full set of features on the Pro 11" totally won me over. It won me over so much that when I found that my LTE Pro 11" had a serious bend, and I returned it for an LTE 6th Gen iPad (9.7", first gen pencil support), I realized that I really could not go back to an earlier generation. I have returned the 6th Gen iPad for a wifi Pro 11" - I'm thinking about whether I will go back to the LTE version or not...but my point is that even the 10.5" Pro (which I have also tried for a couple of weeks), as nice as the 10.5" is, just don't offer the same experience as the 2018 Pro iPads.

    So, YMMV, IMHO, and all that, but personally I would never buy either the 2018 iPad or the 2017 Pro iPads today - but see also my response below if you don't plan to use the pencil.

    --- Post Merged, Jan 8, 2019 ---
    I will say that if you don't use the pencil, this is may be true. My comments above relate to using the pencil, which just isn't the same experience on iPads other than the 2018 Pro iPads. (YMMV, IMHO, etc.). To me, the 10.5" is too close to the cost of the 11" Pro to be a viable purchase. If you don't really want or need what the 11" offers, the 6th Gen iPad is a very good value.
  8. muzzy996 macrumors 6502

    Feb 16, 2018
    Agree with the others - if you really can get a refurbished 10.5 at half the price of the 11-inch then you may be better off going that route. Parlay the cost savings into Applecare+ or something if all you get is the standard warranty on the refurb. It's still an upgrade to the Air 2.

    Keep in mind that while the 11-inch is the newest kid on the block with shiny bits and pieces, at the end of the day it's still running the same software for the time being so unless you're in a niche group that really needs the additional horsepower or hardware features the cost difference may not be justifiable. Only you can decide that.
  9. ericwn macrumors 68000

    Apr 24, 2016
    Any iPad Pro is an upgrade over the Air 2. You’ll be the best judge on your finances, get what you can afford- then make somebody else’s day with the old device.

    Life is short- get what brings you the most joy or best experience.
  10. QCassidy352 macrumors G4


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    He's going to see very little upgrade from an Air 2 to the 2018 non-pro iPad. Faster, yes, but slightly thicker and a non-laminated screen. The only big upgrade is going to be pencil support, if that's important to him, but the 2018 9.7" has not advanced all that far past the Air 2.
  11. AKS3003 macrumors member

    Sep 17, 2017
    I would suggest that you get a new 10.5" 2017 iPad pro. The 2018 11" Pro is awesome, but apart from the new form factor and FaceID, there isn't really anything new. The A12X on the 11" is a beast, but so is the A10X on the 10.5". Both have the same amount of RAM, 4GB. Both the iPads have the same screen, both at 264 ppi, same color reproduction, same brightness and everything.

    In real world use you won't notice any difference. You will only start to notice a difference after 2 years, that too while using heavy applications like Photoshop or LightRoom

    Buying the 10.5" pro will save you money, while providing the same performance, and you won't have to worry about the bending issues the 2018 iPad pros are facing. Also, the 10.5" pro has better battery life than the 11" pro.

    You can save more money by buying a refurbished 10.5". If you use your iPad only for consumption (surfing the web, watching Youtube & Netflix, listening to music, etc, causal games) then get the 2017 9.7" iPad. It'll save you a ton of money without any significant compromises
  12. braddick macrumors 68040


    Jun 28, 2009
    Encinitas, CA
    Based on your own words,

    "my iPad Air 2 64GB which I have had for over 3 years now and it is still going very good/strong and is very fast and is on IOS 9.3.4 but the battery is not as good compared to 3 years ago but I still can get a least 8/9 hours of screen on time on every single charge(100% to 5%)"

    I wouldn't upgrade at all.
  13. Dented macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2009
    Agree with this, the 2018 iPad is basically identical physically to the iPad Air 1 and lacks both the laminated screen and the (I think) the beefier speakers that the OP will be used to with their 2nd gen model.

    The Air 2 was almost like a prototype Pro and it’s the Pro line that has followed on from it - the regular iPads are iterations on the Air 1 with updated internals.

    I had the Air 1 and just got the 10.5 as a (massive) upgrade to that model. I think the OP would be happy with it too, but there again the screen etc won’t be quite such a wow factor for them.
  14. Moakesy macrumors regular


    Mar 1, 2013
    I'd say your choice is to wait it out or to go for the 2018 iPP.

    The 10.5" option will be rationalised in your head as the right choice financially, but your heart will lust for the iPP every time you pick it up. Buy the 11" and your heart will smile.

    I say this because you sound similar to know inside that it makes no sense to spend more money, but you just can't help yourself. This is about heart and head, wants and reality it has little to do with feature sets or relative specs.

    As your current iPad still does what you want, either try and wait it out until the 11" iPads start turning up on the Apple refurb site, or just bite the bullet and go for it now. If you have a relative with a UniDays account, the student discount will help (although it's only small).

    I'm about to bite the bullet and also go from the iPad Air 2 to the 11", so in a weeks time I can come back and tell you what the experience is like.....however, I'm going down from 128Gb to 64Gb. I still have 88Gb free, have 135 apps and only use a handful of them, so there is no point in spending more to going large....I'll stick everything in the cloud and keep my money.
  15. newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    If you can get a 10.5" for a really good price, I guess it'd be a good choice. At new prices (IMO) it's just too close to the 11", and missing too much good tech, to be a good buy.
  16. Dented macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2009
    Is it missing much “good tech” though? Face ID and Touch ID are a wash imho, they both achieve the same thing pretty much as easily (and both have drawbacks). You have a faster processor in the 11 no doubt, but both are massively overpowered for iOS in its current form. The same ram, largely the same screen tech (Pro motion, True Tone etc), similar speakers, both have cameras that are far better than they need to be on a tablet, both work with an ASK, both work with a pencil, though I suppose the wireless charging for the pencil 2 is nice (though that also incurs extra cost for the newer pencil). I’m not so sure the gap really warrants the premium personally.
  17. newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    To me (and ymmv), the difference between the two generations of pencil are huge in use. It sounds sort of dull in print, but the no-roll flat side, break-free charging, and matte finish are huge for me in real life daily use.

    FaceID is probably less compelling, but an awful lot of things that involve logging in go faster and easier with FaceID.

    You pay a premium for those, but compared to the 10.5”, to me, it feels like a good value. Again, ymmv.
  18. willentrekin macrumors regular


    Jun 12, 2013
    I'm in the same boat! I've had my Air 2 just about since launch and use it pretty much every day, and fairly heavily at that. Media consumption, reading (News, magazines, Kindle), etc. Games, too. The Room!

    The Pro, even the 10.5 is definitely an upgrade if only because of ProMotion. Seriously, if you go to the store and use one, the higher refresh rate makes literally everything feel faster. And the refurbished model is a great deal!

    But the 11 has a 'wow' factor that the 10.5, as good as it may be, just doesn't. Don't get me wrong: the 10.5 is terrific. But when I went to the store to see the 11, I literally picked it up and said "Wow." The way it fits together as a device . . . I think it's the closest device to perfect Apple has ever made. It's like a Platonic ideal of the idea of, weirdly, holding a screen but never actually seeing it for the screen so much as a "window" for what's on the screen, if that makes sense. You get it in your hand and the device goes away in favor of everything you're using it to do.

    Me, personally, I think I'm waiting for some better case options. I don't like the Smart Keyboard (and really don't need a keyboard at all because I have a Magic Keyboard for my Mac mini and can just take that wherever).

    Also, I've found Apple's use of TouchID for unlocking devices universally inconsistent. Maybe it's my fingers, but TouchID for me usually only works for in-app authentication; to unlock my phone or iPad, I have to use my passcode at least 85% of the time. So I'm looking forward to moving over to FaceID.
  19. newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    I think you called the 'wow' factor on the 11" correctly, as well as the current shortage of cases (at least cases that suit my wishes).

    I have never had trouble unlocking with TouchID, but logging into websites is very inconsistent, whereas FaceID seems to be extremely reliable and consistent.

    I didn't find the 10.5 technologically persuasive vs. the Air 2, but people will see that (literally!) differently.

    I still think the 10.5 Pro is on the expensive side as an upgrade for the Air 2, but I notice that the current price for a 64gb wifi 10.5" Pro is $550 in the US, compared to $800 for the 11" wifi. At that price, the 10.5" Pro may look attractive, but I think folks should consider exactly what they're getting in comparison to the Air 2, and losing in comparison to the 11" Pro. (No pencil/gen 1 Pencil/gen 2 Pencil is a comparison that springs to mind.)
  20. Hym tix macrumors regular

    Hym tix

    Sep 21, 2012
    no response from the OP...

    anyway, the wow factor is not a small thing.

    If the differences in specs and price don't persuade you one way or the other then just go to a store that has both and do a visual/ in-hand comparison. That will probably either tell you "wow I have to have the 11" or "meh, for the price I think I'm good with the 10.5" No one on the forum can make that judgment call for you.
  21. MyAppleWorld macrumors 6502a


    Nov 1, 2005
    Birmingham, UK
    Pickup a bargain 10.5 on eBay - easily £400. I’ve seen new ones not much more.

    10.5 pro is light years ahead of air 2 in terms of performance. It’s night and day difference.

    11inch is a bad experience because we have to wait months for apps to update and take advantage of the display.

    I sold my 10.5 before buying the 11 and now I regret it.

    I have spent £500 extra to get the 11 and keyboard and it’s the biggest waste of money ever.
  22. sickoagb macrumors newbie

    An alternative for you might be the 12.9 inch 2017 Pro which John Lewis has for £799 with 512GB and cellular, as that will definitely feel like an upgrade.
  23. Royksöpp macrumors 6502a


    Nov 4, 2013
    I upgraded to a 10.5 and gave my Air 2 to my mom. The difference is like night and day.

    The upgrade is worth it.

    120HZ Pro Motion Screen with True Tone
    4GB of Ram
    4 Speakers
    Pencil Support
    Headphone Jack ;)

    I've been using mine since July 2017. It's been smooth and reliable. In my opinion I believe that it's the 6s of iPads. There are no compromises. It's true that the 11 has more bells and whistles, but at the end of the day it's still an iPad running iOS. There is no radical difference between the two other than outer changes and a mild processor bump. Plus the original Pencil feels wonderful. It has a great heft and length. The new Pencil is stubby and uncomfortable to use. Take it from me, double tap is not all that. It takes as much effort to tap a tool with the pencil on screen as it is to adjust your hand and fingers to double tap. In terms of Apps you will still use them exactly the same. Face ID comes in handy when entering passwords, but it's not much effort to use touch id. I say all this from experience because I owned both and kept the 10.5. If you have your heart set on the premium pro I would just wait for version 2 of the 11 and go for a 2018 9.7 in the mean time. Remember that the 2018 Pros are 1st gen products. Just keep that in mind.
  24. Jimbo Limbo macrumors member

    Aug 13, 2015
    I would suggest going from the Air 2 to the new iPad Pro 11 or 12.9. Perhaps wait a bit longer to accumulate more funds.

    It is not worth getting a device that uses the first Apple Pencil, now that the second one exists. The charging and pairing just make so much more sense, meaning that your pencil will rarely if ever be out of charge. You might not think that the pencil is a big deal for you, but there is a whole wave of pencil enabled productivity apps coming out, raising the tablet beyond a simple consumption device. The future of iPad is Pencil 2.

    I also see USB-C as a huge deal. I see all Apple products standardizing here. The macs are there now, so are the latest iPad Pros. I predict the lower cost iPads will shift there too this year, and the 2019 iPhones will go there too. Even tho you may have lightning stuff around the house, it is going to die out.

    The new pros have the processing and graphics power to embrace the new apps that are being finalized now, and will be released in the next few months.

    In Conclusion, stay where you are, and then make a REAL jump to the new iPad Pros.

    P.S. I am writing this on an iPad Air 2, but bought a 12.9 1TB for my kid going off to school next year. I will also be buying a 12.9 1 TB in the next few months for myself. My kid got it first to get really good at it before heading to school in September. Learn the technology now, before going. Get used to Notablity using Apple Pencil now. Got the 1TB to last all the way through studies. Got the LTE equipped one also, even if not needed right now.
  25. newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    I've owned all three and disagree.

    The Gen 1 pencil is too slick in the hand and rolls away every time you put it down. If you want to charge it safely, you need to keep track of the dongle. If you don't, you risk breaking off the tip and disabling and/or damaging both the pencil and whatever it was stuck into.

    TouchID is still very inconsistent in how it handles logins and passwords. Right now I'm using a Gen 6 iPad alongside an 11" Pro. Fairly frequently TouchID doesn't seem to even know the login, requiring me to enter the user ID. Passwords are much easier and faster with FaceID. Depending on how you use an iPad, these may not be a big deal, but they are differences.

    More subjectively, there is something about the slim, even bezels on the 2018 Pro that earlier designs don't match. This is the first iPad that's almost like looking through a window rather than using a device. That's very subjective but having used the 2018 Pro it would be very hard to go back.

    You are correct about the first gen issues with the 2018 iPad. The 2019 (or more likely, the 2020) will be noticeably better in some ways, but that's always true with mobile tech hardware.

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