Which to buy: iPad 1 64gb w/ 3G or iPad 2 16gb wifi?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by rex3, Aug 18, 2011.

  1. rex3 macrumors member

    Jul 20, 2009
    I am looking to buy an iPad for an anniversary present for my wife, but I can't decide between the iPad 1 and 2. I can get the 1 for $429 with 64gb and 3G (new) at the university bookstore, or pay full price for an iPad 2, but then I would likely get the 16 or 32 with wifi. I can't decide which makes more sense.

    She would mostly use it around the house for web browsing, email, and reading ebooks. We would also put photos on it, and videos for the kids to watch. The kids would use it for games.

    I don't think 3G is important for us, so it really comes down to the increased storage for videos and photos versus the thinner, lighter, more comfortable design for reading/web browsing and the faster performance for those activities.

  2. jaseone macrumors 65816


    Nov 7, 2004
    Houston, USA
    Definitely the iPad 2, no question about it. You only really need the extra space if you plan on doing something like storing your entire music collection on it or if you download lots and I mean lots of apps that you never use.

    You will be sure to get replies saying that they need all the space but personally I can't see why if you are smart about what you keep on it and that doesn't mean doing a juggling act.
  3. Robes macrumors newbie

    Feb 13, 2008
    North Carolina
  4. Wolfpup macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I third the iPad 2. It's a massive jump in performance, not to mention it'll probably be supported a year longer or whatever-one less year before you have to replace it.

    iPad 1:
    -single Cortex A8
    -single PowerVR SGX 535

    iPad 2:
    -dual Cortex A9s
    -dual PowerVR SGX 543s

    There's just no comparison there. Double the RAM, well over double the CPU/GPU. And these things are RAM starved to begin with. IMO the iPad 1 should have had 512, the iPad 2 1GB, like the iPad's competitors. (Not having multi-tasking alleviates that somewhat, but at least on 256, you're frequently having to reload webpages just switching between two or three).
  5. karilynn macrumors regular


    Jul 30, 2011
    Saint Paul, MN
    I agree with everyone else, iPad 2. It has a definite performance increase for games and video, especially. You don't necessarily need 64 gigs of space unless you plan on hosting your entire music collection. I picked wifi only and haven't regretted it. I use my phone if I desperately need to access the internet. Overall, the iPad 2 is probably your best bet. :)
  6. jsh1120, Aug 18, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2011

    jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    Same vote here: Wifi iPad 2, especially if you have a fast internet connection and wifi network in your home. (Mine runs close to T1 speeds at home.) If your wife ends up needing a 3G connection, there are several alternatives for mobile wifi hotspots. (I have a 4G LTE mobile router from Verizon that gives me nearly the same speed in 4G areas as my home network.)

    As for the 16G vs 32G choice, do yourself a favor and go with 32G. If you check the various threads on this point, you'll seldom find those with 32G iPads who feel they have too much space and many more with 16G versions who feel they have too little. By the same token, relatively few folks feel that more than 32 gigs is necessary. (I have a 64 gig model and could rather easily gotten along with the 32 gig version.) But unlike the 3G vs Wifi choice, once you've made the decision you can't add additional storage.
  7. ruvil macrumors regular

    Dec 26, 2010
    I think that you absolutely should get the ipad2 with 3g if you are able to and can afford it.
  8. snow blind macrumors regular

    Mar 3, 2011
    One more vote for the iPad 2. There are other solutions for storing more data off the iPad when you need it.
  9. ChristianVirtual macrumors 601


    May 10, 2010
    Based on your description count me in on the iPad 2 side.
    Given that you have enough external storage for your images/videos and can swap based on what you want to see. Or using home share. If possible get the 32GB one.
  10. ninerfan macrumors regular

    Apr 8, 2011
    iPad 2, definitely. But, I submit my vote for the 16gb wifi. I have that and there is more than enough room!! I have about 200 photos and 54 apps. I limit my music because I have my iPhone and iPod for that. I still have 9.5gb available. Unless you want to load up with movies, 16gb should do quite nicely for your wife. And kudos to you for getting her such a great anniversary gift :)
  11. Apple... macrumors 68020


    May 6, 2010
    The United States
    iPad 2! 64GB is more than the average person needs, and there's no reason to not get the newer version. :cool:
  12. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    It's a question of what you keep on the iPad, obviously. I have about 2300 songs, a hundred or so apps and about 150 photos and other images. I couldn't fit all that on a 16G iPad. On the other hand, I have a 64G version and I could get along (barely) with a 32G version. Wasn't sure when I first bought the iPad how I would use it so I opted to be on the safe side. And the 64G version means I don't have to "manage" space.

    It all comes down to what you use the iPad for and whether how much time/effort you're willing to invest in managing space.
  13. greytmom macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2010
    It depends on what is most important to you. Until a couple of weeks ago, I was plugging along happily with my 64gb iPad 1. It did everything you mention, and worked beautifully. I bought the iPad 2 so I could hand the 1 down to my daughter, and now she's in love with it too. However, it wouldn't have been an issue for me to keep it longer - as I said, it does everything I wanted it to do.

    For the purposes you describe, if cost is an issue, I'd go with the 1, so you have 3G and more storage. There will be tons of room for movies and video, and it will work just fine for browsing, email, games, etc.

    If cost isn't a problem, then I'd go with the 2 - but I would go at least 32gb, and 3G. I always want the flexibility of being able to connect even if I'm not in a wifi area, and with 32gb, you can load enough video to keep everyone entertained for a few days, if you are away from home.
  14. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    Again, it's a question of personal circumstances. 3G is a waste of money for me since I already have a carry a mobile router that gives me 3G and 4G connectivity. More expensive than the iPad plan, but I have to have it for my laptop. If I had a tethering plan for my smartphone the same would be true.

    As it turns out about 90% of all my iPad use is in my home where I don't use any 3G or 4G connectivity. But since I travel frequently and must have internet connectivity for my laptop when I do, the mobile router is a necessity.

    For those who travel less frequently (say a holiday or two a year) and don't need to connect multiple devices, the 3G iPad can be significantly less expensive than my plan. And for those for whom wifi is almost always available (e.g. college students and those whose outside use is always at Starbucks), a 3G iPad may be an unnecessary expense.
  15. rex3 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 20, 2009
    Thanks everyone!

    I will definitely get the iPad 2, overwhelming consensus there. I will give some thought to the 16/32 question, and forego the 3g. In a pinch, we could always get the tethering plan for her iPhone, and otherwise, it will mostly be used at home.

    We both have 32 gb iPhones. Mine is constantly too full because I have too much music, hers with videos for the kids and music. But since we have the phones for music, maybe we don't need as much storage on the iPad. It could mostly be used for videos for the kids, swapped out as necessary, and just have the most recent photos on it.

    Again, thanks so much for all the thoughtful and helpful responses!!
  16. Wolfpup macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I was going to go with Wifi, since in the rare event I might want to activate a month of data, Sprint's Virgin Mobile MiFi is the best deal...

    Except then i found out about the GPS issue...the 3G versions have it, the wifi only ones don't, and it works even without data activated (so I could STILL use it with Sprint).

    So...I just got a Verizon 3G one (Verizon's data plans seemed cheaper generally...although I'm slightly worried given the iPhone 4 on Verizon's software hasn't been kept up to date...hopefully that won't happen on the iPad. Slightly worrying too that the AT&T models just say "3G" generically, and the Verizon ones specify Verizon, almost like the AT&T ones are the "real" thing....)

    Anyway, I'm living on the edge...with a 16GB one. Which is scary, because I supposedly have 5.5GB of programs (that's how much space they take up in Windows) but on the iPad they supposedly take up 7.6GB...leaving me with only 6.3 free.

    BUT, I really don't need to stick much if any music on here...I have my iPod, and rarely listen anyway. So basically it's podcasts/audiobooks and video converted from my Tivo. My podcasts are usually 1GB or less-at most maybe 2ish. Video...well, after conversion (although come to think of it, I was using iPod touch sizes, which is slightly lower resolution than the Pad) it's like 2GB for 3 hours...so I could have a few days of podcasts + 6 hours of video on here fairly easily...

    And actually I rarely use most of my programs...

    Hopefully it'll get the job done. Man...what a racket that you can't slip in a 16GB SD card! LOL
  17. Apple... macrumors 68020


    May 6, 2010
    The United States
    Hmm. A 64GB iPhone 5 would work wonders. :cool:
  18. abta1 macrumors 6502

    Jul 5, 2010
    Paris, France
    The iPad 2 for sure, unless you are really going to use that 3G functionality, which if you are, you are better off with a miff anyway which can be used with other devices.
  19. ssbearsfan macrumors member

    Apr 12, 2010
    I would go with the ipad 2. You are going to have double the performance and it will most likely handle future software updates. For an extra $70 you will be getting a year or two longer use of the device compared to the first generation which will be phased out first.

    I wouldn't worry about storage. Personally, I don't understand putting 2000+ songs on a device. Who has time to listen to 7 days worth of music? And even if you had a few movies on the device you can only watch 1 at a time and how many times are you likely to watch the same movie multiple times?
  20. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

    Jun 1, 2011
    And why would anyone want to have more than ten books in a library or more than three games on a device? Why keep more than three or four DVD's? Why buy more than groceries than one can consume in one sitting? The answer to all these questions is the same. It's about having a choice.

    I've found that generalizing about others' needs based solely on my own preferences is a risky business.
  21. Wolfpup, Aug 19, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011

    Wolfpup macrumors 68030

    Sep 7, 2006
    I was momentarily freaked when I thought the iPad could directly play Tivo files, because those are of course huge (in my area, maybe 5.5-8GB/hour), so a 14GB iPad isn't fitting much... Except it still can't. Can do SD, but HD it just chokes on and plays 1 frame every once in a great while.

    Which is actually good for me just since it means I don't have a reason to buy a larger iPad, and don't have to regret my choice! :-D

    Oh man...to think that maybe in 5 years or something I could have an iPad sized device, and maybe even just directly copy over shows from my Tivo and it could have enough storage and processing power to play them as is. Hmm...come to think of it, Tivo had a survey about whether people would want to be able to stream to an iPad, although there may be technical problems with that since the iPad's not powerful enough to play the native files, and transcoding takes a ton of power too.
  22. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    You probably don't need it either but consider that only the 3G models have GPS.

    +1 It's amazing how tunnel visioned most forum users seem to be. There are other people in this world and they can and do have entirely different needs and wants.
  23. machasm macrumors member

    Dec 21, 2010
    One thing that hasn't been mentioned is that at the moment you cannot jailbreak an iPad 2 unless you have one on iOS version 4.3.
    The iPad 1 can be jail broken on any iOS version.
  24. rex3 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 20, 2009
    I think I'll wait for iPad 3

    OK, well, this news from the WSJ about retina coming to iPad has given me cold feet. I know the current model has a nice display, but I did really notice the low res when reading web pages and books on it at the Apple store. I think for us it might make sense to wait for it, so that we don't have a burning desire to upgrade in 6 months.

    Valentine's Day, I guess?
  25. SPEEDwithJJ macrumors 65816


    Nov 2, 2008
    You might also want to consider getting your hands on a $100 HP TouchPad (if possible) for use while you wait for the iPad 3 to be released next year. :)

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