Which iPad 3? 16 vs 32 vs 64 GB: Usage Scenarios, Experiences & Apps w main PC/Mac

Discussion in 'iPad' started by crashnburn, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. crashnburn macrumors 6502

    Nov 18, 2009
    Which iPad 3? 16 vs 32 vs 64 GB: Usage Scenarios, Experiences & Apps w main PC/Mac

    I believe a lot of people here have used the iPad 1, 2 and various versions of 16 vs 32 vs 64 GB scenario.

    - Some people here may have used only one of them
    - Some may have started with one (16) and gone up to (32)
    - Some may have had WiFi & later gone with 3G .. or others who got the 3G and realized they use WiFi more (with/ without MiFi)

    - Some may be using it exclusively as their primary computing device - From Browsing to Creating Content (Docs, PPTs, Excel, Notes, Office, Imaging, Specific Apps etc etc)
    - Some may be using it in tandem with a Desktop and/or Laptop that runs Windows or Mac or L*inux
    - Some may have more devices in their usage ecosystem - SmartPhone (iPhone/ Android/ BB) + Kindle/E-ink/ E-book Reader + iPad + Netbook/ Laptop/ Tablet PC + Workstation/ Desktop etc + (maybe a central Home Server/ Media Server .. e.g.)

    - Some may use it more for casual stuff while some use it more for official work, or some little bit of games.. some more.. some as a Productivity App/To do/ vs.. Some as a semi-book / magazine / occasional reader.. Some may use it quite a bit for MEDIA consumption (Music/ Video/ Movies.. TV Series..) when at home.. or when traveling?

    - some may be using it as a transition device for when in travel / transit or when relaxing on bed/ couch or.. just REVIEWING etc.. while their primary work / when on desk / office/ creating/editing the content/ data is another machine.. that runs Windows or Mac or L*inux

    - What kind of usage scenarios have you used for certain apps on iPad vs Main machine

    So based on the above examples.. do share your PAST & PRESENT experiences with the iPad in and around your Tech/ Computing eco system.. and do share your RECOMMENDATION.. on which direction you are going (thereby helping people with SCENARIO SIMILAR TO YOURS.. to choose the right one.. 16 vs 32 vs 64.. 4G/ WiFi)

    If there is such a similar thread or location where SEVERAL PEOPLE and SEVERAL EXAMPLES of such COMPARATIVE and VARYING .. USAGE SCENARIOS & PEOPLE EXPERIENCES have been outlined please do let me know.


    PS: In my experience, I have temporarily used iPad 1 belonging to 2/3 friends of mine for some casual short web surfing and usage. Some casual game experience.
    But, given my AFFINITY for High Screen Resolution Devices.. on my Laptops, Tablet PCs and 30" WQXGA (2560 x 1600), I chose to wait for the HIGH RES iPad..
    I did not have an impending need for it.. but now it might become a great MIDDLE GROUND luxury and/ or take on some of Laptop/ Tablet PC functionalities (simpler stuff.. maybe more complex)..

    ALSO: How would this change with people can add or who already have this external HDD hack to Jailbroken iPad

  2. zerolight macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2006
    I've owned the 1, 2, and soon, the 3. They hold value pretty well so upgrading to the newer model is inexpensive.

    Primary uses -Web, Email, Apps, Games. It's my primary (non work) computing device. Don't get me wrong, I'd never be without my big ass 27" iMac, but for general consumption of media, I prefer slouching on the couch or bed that just isn't comfortable with our MBP and isn't possible with the iMac.

    I'd say it's 80% surfing, email, movies, and Google Reader (via Reeder). But the gaming percentage is rising a bit - still prefer the 360 and PS3, but the iPad games are cheaper.

    Started off with a 64gb iPad. Upgraded that to a 32gb iPad 2. Upgraded that back to 64gb iPad 3. All wifi, no modem.

    90% of the time, the 32gb is plenty. It's also the sweet spot in pricing to my mind. However when we go on vacation I like to stuff it with TV and Movies. At that point I find myself uninstalling apps to make room - so the 64gb becomes essential again. I don't need more space than that.

    I don't tend to use it too much as a music player, but when I do, it's pretty much always at home, so I use the iTunes home sharing feature to access my entire music library without actually having any music on the iPad - saves lots of space. Away from home I'd use my iPhone for music, or iTunes Match.

    edit: I use it a lot with Plex. I have Plex / Plex Server hosting all my TV and Movies. I use the plex client on the iPad to access that (as well as Plex clients on my wifes MBP and our iMac) content and watch TV and Movies - both at home, and via Wifi using MyPlex.
  3. crashnburn thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 18, 2009
    Thanks for your insights.

    I'd love to hear more from people :)
  4. jvdrummer182 macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2010
    I went from a 64 wifi only iPad 2 to a 64 wifi + 4g new iPad.

    I like to keep a decent amount of music on my iPad (i usually import lossless files into iTunes) and a bunch of movies.

    Since the iPad memory is not upgradable, I opted for the largest capacity. If there was a 128 GB, I probably would have purchased it.

    As for the 4G, I came across numerous times where Ive wanted to use cell data on my iPad 2 when there was no wifi available. Also because I carpool to work, I can surf the web now on the days I am not driving.
  5. thelookingglass macrumors 68000

    Apr 27, 2005
    I'll start from the premise that 16GB is way too small. This is from personal experience with the iPad 1 and the iPad 2.

    I'm neither a huge video/music guy nor a big gamer, but I do store a good number of photos/home videos on my iPad. Those take up roughly 8GB of space by themselves. Add in the apps and there goes another 5GB or so (after culling some out ... if I kept everything, I'd probably be at 10GB+). And, on top of that, I do like putting in the occasional movie or TV show and some music. With all this on my 32GB iPad, I'm having to manage the space more than I'd like.

    The problem (first world, of course) is that apps will get bigger to accommodate the retina display and the data you have in those apps will accumulate. Also, photos and videos, especially videos, taken with high end smartphones like the iPhone 4S can get pretty big. A 1 minute video clip weighs in at about a couple hundred MBs. Insane.
  6. lcseds macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2006
    NC, USA
    I had a 64gb iPad 2 that worked great. This time I got a 32gb iPad. Thought it would be enough as I don't keep much music on it. Well, I downloaded a HD movie from iTunes @ 4gb. So a few photos, some music, apps and ONE movie and I used up 10gb. I ordered the 64gb to replace and will return the 32gb. I like to carry a lot of material (movies, TV shows, etc). Streaming and cloud usage is fine, but not always available for me.
  7. monkeylui macrumors 6502

    Oct 11, 2011
    A Galaxy far, far away
  8. crashnburn thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 18, 2009
    I'd love to hear what kind of Usage you have on the iPad - What kind of Data, Apps (& Functional work & stuff), Media you use on the iPad vs on other device (iPhone and/or Laptop/Desktop).

    It would help a lot more people who have or fit a usage scenario like yours get the 16GB or select the appropriate Price / Size point.
  9. thelookingglass macrumors 68000

    Apr 27, 2005
    The question wasn't directed at me, but I'll chime in anyway as I initially bought the 16GB iPad 1 a few years ago and could easily hit the limit of my 32GB new iPad if I wanted.

    The two biggest apps on my iPad are Photos and Evernote. Photos takes up near 8GB and Evernote takes about 1 gig (I have a premium account and store everything offline). I keep all critical personal and business files in Evernote.

    I then have a number of apps for both work and play that add up to several gigs. Stuff like Pages, Numbers, Font Book, photo editors, random games, etc.

    Music I just keep on my iPhone, about 2 gigs of it. I suppose it's nice to have music on your iPad as well, but there's no real point since I always have my iPhone with me. If for whatever reason I don't, I can just use iTunes Match.

    And last but not least, I usually have about 4-5 full length movies on my iPad. This might change soon I can now re-download previously purchased iTunes movies from iCloud.

    Between Photos, Evernote, other apps and movies, there's no way a 16GB would suffice unless I left off some important stuff. For example, I could delete my home videos (which are synced via iTunes to the Photos app) and free up 4-5 gigs of space. But I'd rather not. With 32 GB, I don't have to manage my space for the most important data.

    I thought about getting the 64GB this year, but realized that I'd just fill it up with a lot of videos and music that I hardly ever listen to. I may pick up the Kingston Wi-Drive this weekend, but am not entirely convinced that I need it.
  10. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601


    Feb 10, 2004
    I have 16, 32, and 64gb iPad 1's in my house. I also have 32gb and a 16gb iPhone 4s's. Here's my take on it:

    First, the iPhones (because that wasn't the main question, but it relates, so I'll get through it quickly): 16gb isn't enough for almost anyone, imo, unless they don't store any movies, play the "high end" 3D games, or use it as an iPod. The reason is the camera - the photos are over 5mb each and the real killer is the 1080p (you can't select a lower resolution). Taking a lot of photos or really any video, when combined with even a small amount of apps or media uses up all the storage on a 16gb model very quickly.

    OK, iPads - the 16gb is basically fine unless you want a web/email tablet. Starting loading any media and you run into the same problem as the iPhone, except that with the iPad if you aren't storing some movies on there I think you are missing out on a huge part of what the iPad is great at.

    The 32gb is the sweet spot, for me. Enough room for some high quality DVD rips, a small music playlist (assuming you are putting most of your music on an iPhone/iPod), all the apps you could want including some bigger games, and a little wiggle room to spare.

    The 64gb is almost overkill, imo. I throw on a bunch of movies, including 720p BluRay rips, my whole iPod playlist, all the other media I could think of (comic books, ebooks, photo albums from iPhoto, etc) plus every app I use with any regularity, including several huge games and still don't fill it up.

    With the new iPad, though, the camera is going to add to the problem, just like the iPhone. The 1080p video file are huge, so if you plan to use it at all, you should consider that. IMO, I would avoid the 16gb for most people. If the budget is $500, no more, get a refurb 32gb iPad 2 for $450. If the budget is higher, say $700, I would skip the 64gb wifi in favor of the 32gb 4G model - I don't think the extra space past 32gb is really needed and I'm betting you'd recapture more of that $100 in resale with the 4G model.

    Of course, some people like to have all their media right there all the time, so the 64gb is the only way to go if you fall into that group. Even the 16gb is manageable if you really stay on top of what apps you are using, what movie(s)/show(s) you will watch next, and use services like Music Match and Netflix to stream a lot of your content.
  11. h1r0ll3r macrumors 68040


    Dec 28, 2009
    1st iPad for me and I got the 64GB 4G model. With all electronics, I generally tend to get the highest model simply because that's how I roll. In terms of iDevices, want vastly outweighs need in my case.

    The 64GB is perfect for me as I use it as my media consumption device, travel computer and alongside my DSLR. I have about 12GB of movies, 8GB of music, 6GB of apps and another 6GB in photos. Obviously the 32GB would be a no go for me with all that crap on mine and the free space is left for additional movie titles as well as photo imports from my DSLR.
  12. Booji macrumors 6502a


    Nov 17, 2011
    One thing that nobody mentions is that your behaviour changes depending on the capacity of your device. If you buy the smallest capacity, you will always make decisions on what is important to keep on the device and what is not. If you have the largest capacity, you tend to throw everything on there in hopes that you will fill it up so that you can justify the investment.

    Perhaps its kind of irrational, but I always like to ignore the practical analysis and just buy the biggest one every time and fill it up. Soon, I'll be happy I got the biggest one! :D
  13. kooskoos1814 macrumors member

    Apr 6, 2012
    I have the 32GB and it's still too much for me. Why ? Because I don't have any music on it (thanks to Google Music) and I don't download huge movies.

    But I definitely think that the 32GB is the right spot, because it's not too big but big enough to have some movies, lots of apps and to store photos.
    The 16GB would do the job too, especially if you are on a budget...
  14. Abazigal macrumors G3


    Jul 18, 2011
    I bought the 64gb wifi+4G model and well, it is basically overkill for me.

    You would probably think I live under a rock.

    I have no music or photo collection to store whatsoever.
    I stream videos off my imac using airvideo.
    Iworks suite takes up very little space, as do the various files.
    Only 1 game I am currently playing - shadow era, less than 100mb
    I have a lot of pdfs, but surprisingly enough, they take up only ~200mb.

    Basically, I have only used about 4-5 gb of memory on my ipad so far, and I do not see myself using significantly more in the near future.

    Also, the 4G chip is reportedly not that compatible with my country's 3G network, resulting in slow speeds, which means I use wifi most of the time.

    In short, I would likely have been just as well off getting the 16gb wifi-only model. :p
  15. Mun-Jai macrumors newbie

    Mar 15, 2012
    iPhone 4 16GB - I use this to store music, apps that I need to use on the go e.g. BBC News, Tube Travel A lerts, Whatsapp etc. gaming apps that I can play whilst on the go e.g. Bejewelled, Kairosoft stuff etc.

    iPad 32GB is used mainly for eBooks, comic readers, movies, 'casual' photo editing and games where screen estate is important e.g. SimCity. Some 'work' is done but I wouldn't consider it anything worth noting - still experimenting with whether it's convenient without a data connection.

    Given that I used to store everything on the iPhone only for me, 16GB was not enough, but given two devices to spread things over, and with distinct uses (for me personally anyway) 16GB on each device has become sufficient - assuming I don't start storing more stuff on it of course. Extra space does equate to putting more media on without cleaning stuff out as frequently.
  16. MF878 macrumors regular


    Jul 12, 2011
    Auckland, New Zealand
    I went with the 32GB model and am so glad that I didn't get a 16.

    I have 404 songs (maximum quality), 43 apps, 6 TV episodes, 2 video podcasts and the 40 or so photos/videos I have taken with the device, some of which are duplicates as they have been edited in iPhoto. This puts me a teensy little bit over half, so they'd probably still fit on the 16GB if I down rated the music quality. However, a lot of these apps are yet to be updated for the Retina display, which is going to cause them to grow in size, and I am yet to purchase Infinity Blade 2 and Sky Gambers: Air Supremacy, both of which are around 1GB each before you've even played them and added more game data to the mix. GarageBand and iMovie are also 1GB each before you've even saved a file, GarageBand I have but I am yet to get iMovie. Once I download the three I am missing, that is 3GB just like that, putting me beyond 16GB territory, bearing in mind this is my first iPad so almost none of this is existing content. It's only been ten days, and had I purchased a 16GB, I'd already be having to manage my space appropriately.
  17. Kavier macrumors 6502a


    Feb 1, 2010
    Raleigh, NC
    Let's see...I keep all my music on my iPhone, so I have none on the iPad. I keep 2-3 movies and 6-7 book on the iPad at a time and change them out as necessary. I've got about 90 apps, a few games but not that many as I am not a huge gamer. I have pages, numbers and keynote, a few home design and layout apps, a few magazine and news apps, photo editing apps, editions, a few streaming music apps, a couple monthly magazine subscriptions, etc. I have about 200 pics but my macbook and an external drive is where I store most of my pics. I still have 5 gigs free after all of this for expansion. I use my iPad for personal use only.
  18. Abazigal macrumors G3


    Jul 18, 2011
    I may have to retract my earlier statement about 16gb being enough.

    Today, I recorded a 50 min video on my iphone as part of a classroom lesson observation and transferred it over to my ipad for viewing/editing. Goodness, the entire file took up more than 7 gb! :eek: If this had been a 16gb ipad, it would likely just have been enough, with little space left over for anything else.

    I think in light of this, it may be wiser to go with at least a 32gb version, just in case.
  19. TraceyS/FL macrumors 601

    Jan 11, 2007
    North Central Florida
    I own a 32gb iPad1 - as does my daughter.

    I can't imagine going lower than that, and will likely go for the 64gb wifi version this time (it will be harder for me to give up the 3/4G than skip the space).

    I don't LIKE having to micromanage my space. I haven't had to until recently - hence the jump to 64.

    But honestly, persuading myself to skip the 3/4G and use my phone as a hotspot is my biggest hangup right now.
  20. jarrettz macrumors newbie

    Apr 16, 2012
    I have a question for you guys with the 4g option. Is the 32gb and 64gb really needed? Can't you just stream videos/music/re-download apps on the fly?

    I have unlimited 4g on Verizon from my galaxy nexus phone and plan to stick my sim in the iPad so that is the perspective I am coming from. Your opinions are much appreciated. :D
  21. Zendokan macrumors regular


    Feb 17, 2011
    My rule of thumb is:
    If the iOS device is used more for work related stuff, get one with the second highest capacity, if the device is used primairly for entertainment related stuff than get the one with the biggest capacity.
    It always worked out for me :D

    So it's an 64gb iPad 2 wifi that I have experience with. I didn't need a 3G model, because I use my iPhone as tethering modem in the rare occassions when there isn't any wifi available.

    There's about 8gb of music on it, some movies and Apps: iWorks, iLife, some Brazilian Jiu jitsu apps, a lot of instructional Salsa clips and some games: Blades of Fury, The Simpsons, Infinity Blade 1&2, Prince of Persia and all the Angry Birds (for some reason, when I sync my iPad, it gets the iPhone and the iPad versions).

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