Choice of iPad?


Being happy where you are is where its at


would the actual regular Ipad be powerful enough to do stuff like this, or should I go for pro?


Fwiw my ipad air still runs all my apps fine…however I rarely use it for music…the apps are great but it feels like recording a computer w another computer for the most part…


I just ordered a new 2017 ipad 128gb from B+H Photo… Best price I could find. I expect this to handle my music apps with no problems. But if you (the OP) have specific concerns about a particular software - send the creator an email with your concerns. I have had good luck doing this in the past.

I could not see any justification based on my needs for going with the pro version.


Yeah, the regular iPad can handle Audulus just fine.

I only want the Pro for the pen support, for use w/ Notion. Don’t care about the other tech specs.


I never had ios. That’s why I have no imagination yet what specs I need to run the music apps.
I have a 2015 15 inch macbook pro, so I know I can use U-he Diva or Reaktor Blocks without any problems, but I don’t know how much power apps like SamplR, Granular, Patterning, or the better sounding synth apps need…
If the regular iPad runs them fine, I could save money for a change :slight_smile:


That might be not what you asked for but I´d not buy an ipad again. I got an ipad mini four years ago. It was NEW, up to date and the best ipad you could find at this time. Today I can´t install any softsynth because it is too old and slow. Even my newspaper app (which I got if for in the first place) developed a terrible input lag. And yes, I resetted the ipad and installed the newest OS.

The hardware support is also suffering from a short lifecycle. Midi and Audio interfaces will work until they are unsupported in the next OS update or apple changes the dock connector to a new hippie-port.

Stuff that works fine will stop working for no reason. I was a huge fan of touchable until I got tired of reinstalling updates on 1. my mac, 2. ableton, 3. ios, 4. touchable app. If one version mismatches (and they release new versions like I change my socks) it does not work anymore.


I bought the regular 9.7in 32GB iPad a couple of months ago for audio work. It’s got the A9 processor in it which is a bit quicker than the (three core A8X) iPad Air 2 it replaced and the (two core A8) iPad mini. The new iPad Pros announced yesterday apparently have the A10X which is considerably quicker than the A9, but how much of this power will be needed to held drive the higher res screens I don’t know. Check out Geekbench for a comparison (the 9.7in iPad isn’t on the list but has the same processor as the iPhone SE):

All these processors (A8 - A10X) should be fine for whatever audio work you throw at it, but given how iOS seems to slow down older devices with every new release (contrary to the old MacOS X upgrades which made your computer faster with every release!) I’d go with the fastest processor you can afford.

For me the regular A9 iPad fit the bill - it’s cheap and fast. I don’t need more SSD capacity than 32GB because I don’t use the iPad for recording multitrack audio or storing large files like movies. SSD capacity won’t affect how well the iPad handles virtual synths, FX instances, sequencers etc. If you’re using it for web browsing and using audio apps like synths and sequencers I’d skip the higher capacity iPads and save some money. IMHO, YMMV etc.


thanks, very helpful!


It might help to understand that initially there were huge increases in CPU performance beteeen each generation. Also, a few years back, Apple was the first to move from a 32-bit to a 64-bit ARM architecture.

These days, there is still a performance increase with each new generation, but the differences in pure CPU performance are getting smaller.

You can also see this in Apple’s marketing. The focus is more on graphics performance and display improvements.

Won’t bore you with all the details, but a current generation iOS device you buy today will be “fast enough” for a longer period of time than one you bought a few generations back.

This is also why in general you want to buy a current-generation device for mostly processor-bound workload like audio apps.


Thanks all for the information and opinions. I try to decide between the standard Ipad and the 10.5’’ pro.
If the standard runs most of the audio apps fine, as some here stated, I’m leaning towards the cheaper device this time.
The other question is 32gb vs 128 gb.

I’m also not going to store movies and stuff. Mainly interested in audio devices.
So maybe the cheapest version could be sufficient just for once… But to be on the save side, maybe the 128gb. Haha… Let’s see


I’ve run Borderlands Granular, Patterning, Audulus, iVCS3, iDensity, among others, on my iPad 4th gen - and this is an old iPad by today’s standards. The two apps that made my iPad struggle are Flux:FX and Stroke Machine - both are known to be heavier on the CPU than most other apps…

As mentioned by others, the last BIG change in iPad hardware was the switch from 32-bit to 64-bit. Any 64-bit iPad you get will be fine, Pro or not. You and other iPad users might be screwed over by a future version of IOS when it evolves to 128-bit, but I bet you’ll get 5 years of use out of your iPad investment before that happens - you’re safe until 128-bit CPUs get introduced.


Was that before you get Push 2?
I believe with current iPads the CPU updates are more incremental compared to previous generations so they in theory should work smooth for longer period.


I have an old iPad 2 that is barely functioning. So I’m thinking of buying an iPad for apps related to music-making, synths, etc. but am not sure which one to get? I don’t want to spend too much, which is why I am not simply going for the latest and greatest.


I bought an iPad Air 2 a couple of years ago. It’s still going strong. Before that I had an iPad 2 - the difference is huge. That’s what I’d suggest if you don’t want to get a Pro.


I think the consensus is that anything iPad Air 2 or newer should offer a comparable performance? Not much point going past that ATM, unless something is coming with iOS11 that we do not yet know about…?



Been using an iPad Air 2 for a few years now.
Still seems fast enough


I’m using the iPad pro. Still have an air2, but the pro is so much better. Screen size, faster processor and i love the pencil.


Make sure you try out every size before buying. For me the mini was perfect, standard way too big.