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Old 01-08-2014, 04:34 PM   #1
AlbertaCowboy
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iPad Mini 1 or iPad Mini With Retina?

My lovely wife has expressed a desire for an iPad Mini for her birthday. If it were up to me, I'd go with the Mini 2 with Retina display, mainly because I like tech and new toys, but in all honesty, all she'll use it for is for marathon Plants VS. Zombie sessions, web browsing and Facebooking.
Does anyone have hands on with both Minis? Is the speed and retina display worth another hundred bucks or so?
Also please note that she does not want a full sized Pad, even though the price difference makes it worthwhile to get the iPad Air, she emphatically wants a Mini.
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:40 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by AlbertaCowboy View Post
My lovely wife has expressed a desire for an iPad Mini for her birthday. If it were up to me, I'd go with the Mini 2 with Retina display, mainly because I like tech and new toys, but in all honesty, all she'll use it for is for marathon Plants VS. Zombie sessions and Facebooking.
Does anyone have hands on with both Minis? Is the speed and retina display worth another hundred bucks or so?
Also please note that she does not want a full sized Pad, even though the price difference makes it worthwhile to get the iPad Air, she emphatically wants a Mini.
That depends totally on her eyesight. My eyes cannot handle the lower pixel density and resolution of tablets like the original iPad Mini 1. But I'm 56 and have always had poor eyesight to some degree. Several posters around this forum say they had no issues with the iPad Mini 1 screen. I personally use my iPad Mini 2 (with Retina) as my main eBook reader, so for me the 2 was worth the extra $100. I never had the Mini 1, but I did have an iPad 1 for a year. I had a lot of trouble reading on it or even surfing the web. Both tasks caused eyestrain. But I do not have any eyestrain with the Mini 2.

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Old 01-08-2014, 05:26 PM   #3
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Just this morning, I exchanged a non-Retina mini for one with Retina. Compared to my high res laptops (Windows and Mac) and Nexus 7 (2013), the low resolution of non-Retina was distracting.

I too, am 56 and find the higher resolution easier on my eyes. I purchased a non-Retina for my 87 yr old mother and she's good with it because she doesn't have anything to compare it to.
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:37 PM   #4
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I love my Mini Retina! I also could not handle the lower resolution, especially since my eyes are used to higher resolution on other devices already. She may like it so much that she finds she wants to use it for more purposes than her original intentions!
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Old 01-08-2014, 06:09 PM   #5
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Oh, one more thing I noticed. The Retina mini is much faster than the non-Retina version (IMO) - A7 vs A5 chip. That may make a difference in gaming.
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Old 01-09-2014, 06:16 AM   #6
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I am 62 with reasonably good eyesight I only wear glasses for reading and I cannot perceive the difference between the 2 screens. It is purely personal. My recommendation would be to go to the Apple store and compare the two running the apps that your wife uses and then make a decision.
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Old 01-09-2014, 06:55 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Valkrider View Post
I am 62 with reasonably good eyesight I only wear glasses for reading and I cannot perceive the difference between the 2 screens.
I'm a little surprised to hear that - the difference is like night and day to me, especially for text. Have the compared the two screens side by side?
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Old 01-09-2014, 09:18 AM   #8
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I've compared the retina iPad with the non-retina mini and I really can't tell the difference for the things I do on the iPad (mostly surfing, no movies or heavy reading). The designation "retina" isn't anything magical, it's supposed to represent the pixel density that someone can't see individual pixels, but it is going to vary from person to person since we all have different eyes.
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Old 01-09-2014, 02:01 PM   #9
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I'd definitely go for the Retina as it will be more future proof (iOS 8 etc...) due to the much better CPU and graphics. It will last longer. The non-retina uses an older and *much* slower A5 chip.
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Old 01-09-2014, 08:22 PM   #10
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The Retina screen makes an enormous difference to me. But why not have her compare them with her own eyes, and decide from there?
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Old 01-09-2014, 10:55 PM   #11
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Very insightful, the original question was

Quote:
iPad Mini 1 or iPad Mini With Retina?
and your answer is

Quote:
Originally Posted by andreix View Post
The iPad mini for sure.
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:15 AM   #12
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Buying the original mini when it first came out was ridiculous enough. Buying it when the retina version is out would be even more so.
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Old 01-10-2014, 06:15 AM   #13
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I almost instantly jumped onto the Retina Mini when it came out, having a Retina Mac and an iPhone 4 I couldn’t bear the sight of the version 1 anymore (which I got used cheap and found really nice in every other regard)...
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:23 AM   #14
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I have the original mini and find the screen fine. I've also got a 5S and I was using the S4 before and don't have any problems with the screen not being retina. I don't use it for reading much. Just web browsing, games and videos. I do use it for reading in short spells occasionally and I find it fine.

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Old 01-10-2014, 09:48 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
I'm a little surprised to hear that - the difference is like night and day to me, especially for text. Have the compared the two screens side by side?
Like Valkrider, I find the differences way less eye-popping.
In direct comparison of course it's pretty obvious - even extreme.

I first compared iPad 1 and iPad 4. I was perfectly fine with iPad 4, but didn't consider it anything special. Only when comparing to iPad 1, especially when using iPhone apps in zoom, I saw the vast difference.
Same for my Surface RT. It's only 1.366 x 768, but I'm perfectly fine with the display quality. Or my MacBook Air 11" with the same resolution.
But then again: I've started reading eBooks on Pocket PCs and Palm Pilots in 2000 and didn't have problems then either.

Always the same: If you want to focus on it, it will be obvious. Once I had seen the gaps between housing and frame on my Nook HD, I couldn't stand it anymore. I couldn't read, I couldn't play games. All I saw was the low build quality.
Same for the resolution of the display: If you want to check out the pixels, you will see them. But if you just start reading, it should be perfectly fine.
We've all read on Notebook displays twice the size of iPad Mini with lower resolution a few years ago perfectly fine...

Last edited by mgmueller; 01-10-2014 at 04:08 PM.
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