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apple air vs ipad pro
Old 08-21-2018   #1
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apple air vs ipad pro

musing and reading about the apple air...vs the smaller ipad pro.
i have the bigger ipad pro but i think i made a mistake in buying it...just based on the size and weight of it i never take it with me. one of the goals i had for it was to become one of those coffee house geeks working on image editing while i sip a nice hot espresso.
the air seems to be a bit behind in tech specs compared to the ipad pro plus it has the older non retina screen. the ipad is also about $700 more than the air.
also, the air can take on a full editing program where the ipad uses apps.

so, if i've made some sense here what do you think? is the mac air gonna do it for me or should i go for a smaller ipad pro?
it will also be used for use on the net and emails but not much more.
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Old 08-21-2018   #2
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I believe I read today that Apple is about to introduce a new MacBook Air (and Mac Mini), so you might want to hold off a month or two.
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Old 08-21-2018   #3
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What's the 'keyboard' feature of the iPad like? Is it just an image of a keyboard on the screen, like an iPhone? Can you use a separate keyboard with the iPad via Bluetooth? The keyboard feature would be important to me if using for internet searches and emails.
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Old 08-21-2018   #4
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Rumor has it there will be an updated macbook air in september ... so hold on.

When my last macbook air died about a year ago, I too thought I would try a ipad pro.
It’s not been a total success , though affinity photo has certainly made life easier.
But there are too many ipad pain points, so will look to get a laptop later this year.
The macbook keyboard dust ingress issues seem to have just been resolved in the latest updates.
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Old 08-21-2018   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie Pillers View Post
What's the 'keyboard' feature of the iPad like? Is it just an image of a keyboard on the screen, like an iPhone? Can you use a separate keyboard with the iPad via Bluetooth? The keyboard feature would be important to me if using for internet searches and emails.
There is a flexible "Smart Keyboard" option for both the smaller and large versions of the iPad Pro. The iPad is great for email and surfing the web. I wouldn't use an iPad to edit my images except in a pinch. I prefer working on my 27" display.
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Old 08-21-2018   #6
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Quote:
Is it just an image of a keyboard on the screen,
Yes.

But a much bigger screen that helps me as my finners are too large for an iPhone screen!

I use the iPad mini and my wife uses the the next size up.

You could check out a bluetooth keyboard. I like the smallness of the iPad mini. But I don’t use an external anything with it.

I like the mini. It works just fine for my retired needs. But I still have an iMac with Photoshop that I still use but less frequently now.
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Old 08-21-2018   #7
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For me the IPad does not work as a substitute for a computer.
It is nice for watching TV and web browsing but for image editing and writing I prefer a classic notebooklayout.

So my vote is for the Airbook.
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Old 08-21-2018   #8
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I use an 11 inch MBA for geeking-out in cafes on LR. I also travel interantionally with it to store images, transfer files to external HDs and work on a few as I go. I also use it on the sofa at home and in the studio. But I never finish image work on it. I go to the iMac for jobs and such. The 11 inch is no longer made and I'm not sure if the 13 inch still has the smallness factor that works for me? But I know the ipad pro is not what I need.
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Old 08-21-2018   #9
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You might consider the Microsoft Surface Pro. I bought one a couple months ago after looking at different tablets. I had an android tablet and hated it; it was too limited in what it could do. Looked at iPad and iPad pro and felt the same way. They're not replacements for real computers.

The Surface Pro IS a real computer. Runs Windows 10 Professional. Right now the Surface Pro, latest model, with Core i5 processor and 8GB or RAM is on sale for $809, including the type cover.

I never thought I'd go back to Windows, but Apple stuff has just gotten ridiculously expensive for what it offers. I've been VERY happy with the Surface Pro. Runs the full desktop versions of Photoshop and Lightroom!
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Old 08-21-2018   #10
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My biggest problem with trying to use an iPad Pro (or any iPad really) to edit photos is that it takes FOREVER to download the photos from the camera card, compared to my MacBook Air. And my photo editing programs are so much better on the laptop, and using FTP client to connect to my editor's server is so much better on the MacBook Air.

The iPad sure is cute and convenient, but not a workhorse like the MacBook Air.

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Old 08-21-2018   #11
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Before I started in a small store, someone had convinced the owner that they could handle all the photo editing and such from an iPad Pro.

What a load of cr.... Don't do it. Don't even try. If you want to read emails and Twitter and RFF in a cafe, an iPad is cute. There are even nice cases with built-in keyboards which will make it easy to post to Facebook (if for some idiotic reason you ever do such a thing). Me, I use mine while sitting on the toilet or checking emails in bed- great for killing time! But real editing? Nope.

I don't know what the answer is- Air, wait for new release, Surface, etc. But iPad- Pro or not- is NOT the answer.
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Old 08-21-2018   #12
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Another vote for waiting till the fall. There are supposed to be a new Air, and new iPad Pros.
I am fortunate to have a circa 2011 11 inch MacBook Air which I still use for both my law practice and my photography. The video is good enough that I can use it with a 26 inch NEC monitor. It's a bit slow now with Silver Efex Pro. The only problem I have had was a waning battery. When I went to the Apple Store for a replacement, they said they didn't support it anymore, and that I had to go to a store that deals with vintage machines! I was able to get a third party battery for it, and it's working well. While I was waiting at the Apple Store the person next to me complimented me on my Air, and said she wished she'd kept her old one, because the later ones didn't have the same ports, and hubs became necessary. It will be interesting to see what Apple does with the upcoming models. I don't have an iPad, but I am interested in seeing how people will rate the upcoming (next year) Photoshop for the iPad Pro.
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Old 08-21-2018   #13
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I upgraded from a 13" Macbook to the 15" Macbook Pro, in order to have a larger screen for checking my shots, even in the field. The serious work waits until I get home to use my iMac, with its still larger screen. I don't think I'd be happy for long with an ipad for photo editing, despite the convenience of its small size for travel.
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Old 08-21-2018   #14
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The last generation Surface had a VERY high rate of breakage over a short period of time with every company I've worked at of late. The $399 price is aggressive, but not sure how much memory (RAM) it has, or how much an upgrade would cost.

There are several new macs coming in less than a month, I would agree with waiting. MacRumors.com says there might be a low-cost laptop. While it might not be powerful enough for you, but it should have a 13" screen. It should also drive other systems to a lower price point.

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Old 08-21-2018   #15
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I have been using Ipad Pro 10.7 for a while now. It's absolutely great for emails and social media. I don't travel anymore with a laptop, all office and business apps are perfectly usable and other contents that I would like to access. The Lightroom iPad version is workable for on the go editing but you may need a laptop for more complex editing like working with layers and the like. IMO, this not a substitute but a compliment to your laptop/desktop computer.

Downloading pictures from camera memory card is quick using the proprietary lightning to SD card adapter. I also use a Transcend Jet Drive Go lightning/usb in transferring iPhone pictures and files to and from. Btw, using the keyboard needs a little adjusting to but can get pretty easy when you're used to it as I am now. One thing good is it does not need bluetooth connection which is a battery drainer.
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Old 08-21-2018   #16
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Quote:
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The last generation Surface had a VERY high rate of breakage over a short period of time with every company I've worked at of late. The $399 price is aggressive, but not sure how much memory (RAM) it has, or how much an upgrade would cost
The Surface Pro costs a lot more than $399. Are we talking about the same thing?

The one I have is the current version, the Surface Pro 2017. I haven't heard of any issues with them, and mine has worked flawlessly.
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Old 08-21-2018   #17
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if i make this new machine a christmas present to myself then i can wait till december to make the decision.
i currently use an Mac mini with a 28 inch viewsonic monitor and that suites me to a t!
years ago i bought a mac notebook but wound up hooking it to a monitor and it never left the house. if i weren't interested in using something for image editing then the iPad pro is ideal except for buying the too big for me one.
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Old 08-22-2018   #18
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The iPad Pro is vastly more powerful than the Macbook Air, and I find the non-retina display on the Air intolerable in 2018. I definitely understand your distaste for editing on the iPad, though. You're probably better off with a new, basic-model 13" Macbook Pro—it's fast and has excellent screen resolution. Don't get the one without the touch bar—that one has the innards of an Air.

I agree that you should wait a month, though—new stuff is coming, and there may be a new retina Air replacement with a faster processor!
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Old 08-22-2018   #19
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My wife's 2009 MB Air still works perfectly - even the battery held up. But she is running out of internal storage. I'm waiting until the 2018 is formally announced before I replace her MB Air.

My 2011 MB Air was flawless until August 2017 when I spilled 16 oz of iced tea on the keyboard. I replaced it with an early 13" 2017 MB Pro that was new, but one generation old at the time.

Here are the most recent rumors about the new 2018 MB Air.

I would bet the 2018 MB Air will only have USB-C ports which means you will have to buy USB-C to USB, and or ethernet, etc adaptors and, or a dock. However USB-C external drives are quick.

If the new MB Air starts at $1,200, then current MB Air prices will hold. If the price is $1,000 then newer, current MB Airs will drop in price.

I would look for refurbished MB Airs on Amazon. I'd buy a 2015 model with 256 GB internal SSD.
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Old 08-22-2018   #20
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I have been using an iPad Pro 9x7 as my mobile computer for everything since they came out. It's the right size to fit in camera bag, backpack, satchel, etc. With the right software, it's easy to write, edit photos, convert raw files, and all the other stuff I typically do with a mobile computer.

I have the iPad Pro 12.3" too. It is larger and heavier than I like to carry, but makes a great "around the house" TV and movie watching/editing machine, is great when I want to use it for drawing work with the Apple Pencil. And I use it as a sheet music display when I'm playing the piano.

I bought a MacBook Air 13" ... top of the line stuffed with every option ... in Summer 2016 as I was preparing to retire. I never used it, it sat in the box and was taken out to be for updates every few months, then went back in the box. I sold it last month to a friend who wanted a laptop and have not missed it at all.

My standard image processing machine for my desktop is a 2012 generation Mac mini with maxed out RAM, top of the line i7-quad core processor, 2 1T SSDs inside, etc. I use it for most of my image processing to run Lightroom and all my desktop apps. I wouldn't replace it with an iPad Pro just yet, but another generation of iOS and iOS app development and it might well become unnecessary.

The iPad Pro keyboard cover works very well for typing and is waterproof against coffee spills, although over time (two and a half years of constant use and abuse) it's become a little fragile now and then. ANY iPad past the second generation can be used with just about any Bluetooth keyboard, and with most USB keyboards as well if you use the Lightning->USB adapter dongle. No issues whatever.

The Lightning->SD Card adapter dongle reads the SD cards out of any of my cameras flawlessly onto the iPad Pro. The Lightning->USB adapter dongle works flawlessly with my CF card reader as well (some don't work so well). There is excellent software for converting raw files, image editing, video editing, presentation/movie creation, writing, and numerical analysis (spreadsheets) available for iOS, much of it very low cost or free. Even from Apple themselves.

So ... For me, the iPad Pro has done the number well for mobility and full function. I'm heading off on a six week trip where it and my iPhone 8 Plus will be my computer and communications machines exclusively. I'll likely update my iPad Pro 9x7 to the 10.1 inch soon.

I'll soldier on with my Mac mini as my desktop machine for image processing at home until something comes along that warrants a replacement. I don't need a laptop at all.

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Old 08-22-2018   #21
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Got recently iPad (non pro). It will be a supplement to my computer, so didn't choose the pro version. Am excited to try Apple Pencil, it will be next on the buy list.
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Old 08-22-2018   #22
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Quote:
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Got recently iPad (non pro). It will be a supplement to my computer, so didn't choose the pro version. Am excited to try Apple Pencil, it will be next on the buy list.
Be aware that the Pencil only works on the very newest non-pro iPad (6th gen)!

The Pencil is simply amazing. Along with the 12.9-inch Pro, it has replaced a crate of 300-page student manuscripts for me—my whole academic life is now 100% portable in a light satchel. There's almost no latency—it feels like a real pen. It's great for drawing and painting, too.
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Old 08-22-2018   #23
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Be aware that the Pencil only works on the very newest non-pro iPad (6th gen)!
yes, I was careful to get this exact version.

btw. watching photos on it is so much nicer than from phone screen
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Old 08-22-2018   #24
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yes, I was careful to get this exact version.

btw. watching photos on it is so much nicer than from phone screen
Excellent. I'm really glad they extended this functionality to the non-pro machines; everybody should give it a shot.

And I agree—the big iPad is my favorite way to look at photos, period!
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Old 08-22-2018   #25
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Ditto on the late 2012 i7 quad core Mac Mini with 16GB RAM. I do all my image processing on it with nary a problem or hiccup. I'm not sure if I would upgrade to a newer Mini; in addition to archives and backups to a Mac G5, my current backup devices are all Firewire 800 and my monitor uses the DisplayPort interface.
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Old 08-23-2018   #26
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Ditto on the late 2012 i7 quad core Mac Mini with 16GB RAM. I do all my image processing on it with nary a problem or hiccup. I'm not sure if I would upgrade to a newer Mini; in addition to archives and backups to a Mac G5, my current backup devices are all Firewire 800 and my monitor uses the DisplayPort interface.
Double ditto with regard to the late 2012 i7 quad core Mac Mini with 16GB RAM. It remains an effective tool for still photography post-production work.
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Old 08-23-2018   #27
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I recently got a very tricked out 2016 MacBook Pro via Craigslist for a song. A nice Thunderbolt Display as well in a separate transaction. I've bought most of my camera equipment used, and have quite liked the pricing in the used computer market as well.
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Old 08-23-2018   #28
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I recently got a very tricked out 2016 MacBook Pro via Craigslist for a song. A nice Thunderbolt Display as well in a separate transaction. I've bought most of my camera equipment used, and have quite liked the pricing in the used computer market as well.
i don't know enough about computers to buy used...cameras i am more comfortable with.
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Old 08-23-2018   #29
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Some of This a Little of That

I have a two year old ATT paired iPad that I have with an Apple wireless keyboard and a 53 aftermarket pencil. It works fine for a laptop substitute when I travel light. I use it for maps and internet.

With the available app I use it with the pencil and Photoshop on my desktop Mac.
That is very nice indeed! It's far better than a mouse or finger on a screen.

An iPad by itself is NOT a lap top, but is very convenient for travel.
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Old 08-23-2018   #30
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Mac Book Air - real computer
iPad - Display with toys behind it.
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Old 08-23-2018   #31
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You might consider the Microsoft Surface Pro. I bought one a couple months ago after looking at different tablets. I had an android tablet and hated it; it was too limited in what it could do. Looked at iPad and iPad pro and felt the same way. They're not replacements for real computers.

The Surface Pro IS a real computer. Runs Windows 10 Professional. Right now the Surface Pro, latest model, with Core i5 processor and 8GB or RAM is on sale for $809, including the type cover.

I never thought I'd go back to Windows, but Apple stuff has just gotten ridiculously expensive for what it offers. I've been VERY happy with the Surface Pro. Runs the full desktop versions of Photoshop and Lightroom!
My experience mirrors Chris's experience - for years I was an apple fanboy but over the last few years wasn't happy with their lineup and had some bad experiences with issues with my MacBook pros.

I bought a surface pro 4 about 2 years ago and can report it's been flawless this far. Windows 10 is a really nice/stable OS, the computer itself is about the same size and thickness as an ipad pro, the magnetic keyboard is fantastic (much nicer to type on than the current macbooks), I run LR, photoshop CC and adobe premier with no issues. The stylus is amazing for photo editing - like having a Wacom as a computer. The kickstand is a nice piece of engineering and makes the computer/tablet experience much more useable.

The ipad/tablet experience is essentially a phone that's bigger. You can run 'apps' but no real programs. The surface pro is a computer in tablet form with no real big compromises.

Can't recommend it enough.
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Old 08-23-2018   #32
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I’ve been using an incredibly outdated 2007 dell Inspiron running vista to do all of my scanning with an epson v600. I desperately need an update but have been hesitant because of specs/minimum requirements for certain programs like Lightroom and photoshop.

Will a recent MacBook Air be powerful enough to handle scanning/editing? I don’t do any video work, strictly photo. Judging by this thread it seems to be fine but I figured I’d ask.

Sorry to hijack the thread.
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Old 08-23-2018   #33
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I’ve been using an incredibly outdated 2007 dell Inspiron running vista to do all of my scanning with an epson v600. I desperately need an update but have been hesitant because of specs/minimum requirements for certain programs like Lightroom and photoshop.

Will a recent MacBook Air be powerful enough to handle scanning/editing? I don’t do any video work, strictly photo. Judging by this thread it seems to be fine but I figured I’d ask.

Sorry to hijack the thread.
I had a MacBook air before I got my surface and yes, it'll be fine for editing and scanning. The screen on my air was a bit average in terms of color accuracy though.
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Old 08-24-2018   #34
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I’ve been using an incredibly outdated 2007 dell Inspiron running vista to do all of my scanning with an epson v600. I desperately need an update but have been hesitant because of specs/minimum requirements for certain programs like Lightroom and photoshop.

Will a recent MacBook Air be powerful enough to handle scanning/editing? I don’t do any video work, strictly photo. Judging by this thread it seems to be fine but I figured I’d ask.

Sorry to hijack the thread.
Based on past experience I am comfortable suggesting scanning is not an issue.

For post production work I would order the 2.2 GHz CPU upgrade ($150) and the 512 GB internal SSD ($200). This makes a significant difference with Lightroom and PS. If you want, you can use the MB Air with an external monitor. Larger scan-file sizes and how much time you spend at post-productuion are important variables.

For occasional post-production work, the speed of using an external HD could instead of a larger internal drive could be acceptable. External USB-3 SSD external drives are quick and inexpensive. Another option for fast external storage is an ethernet connected (NAS) HD. You will need an ethernet adapter with the current MB Air. WiFi connectivity is too slow for primary post-production work (but not for back ups, etc). At any rate, you will need an external HD for backups. Backups are simple and reliable using the OS X TimeMachine feature. A portable 2 TB USB-3 HD is about $60.

My guess is the new MB Air will have USB-C ports which are very quick with external drives that supports USB-C. However, USB-C drives are more expensive.
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Old 08-30-2018   #35
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I'm on travel now and my iPad Pro 9.7 is doing service as my "do it all" carry computer very nicely.

I found myself dissatisfied with the results out of the latest Snapseed, which now processes raw files but I hadn't used for that purpose. My CL images seemed to lack the sparkle I saw on screen when rendering them. Well, I've had Affinity Photo on the iPad for some time but hadn't used it. I took on particularly critical example (it's nothing without snap and pop in the sharpness) and quickly dragged it through Affinity for a comparison. My gosh: The difference is astonishing! The Snapseed photo output looks like a thick piece of cheap clear vinyl was dragged over the image, the Affinity output is crystal clear and PRESENT in every way; it pops!

Affinity Photo isn't that expensive and seems to have 95% of what Photoshop CS5 has in it. It runs superbly on the iPad Pro 9.7". Guess what I'll be taking some time to learn more thoroughly now...?

Onwards!
G
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