Monday, November 9, 2020

iPad Air 4 (2020) Review

In many ways this tablet is just an ipad pro but at a more affordable price and missing a few key features with a few additions as well. First let's talk about the design, the ipad air comes in a variety of these new colors that are muted kind of pastel tones. I'm a big fan of the green one personally but they all look pretty nice. The design is the same as a 2018 ipad pro from front to back, it's thin and lightweight feels great to hold, works with the apple pencil 2 and magic keyboard as well or as any other ipad pro accessory but with the brand new fingerprint scanner power button, try to avoid bumper cases that cover up that scanner because you won't be able to use it.

Speaking of the fingerprint scanner there is no face id but that's not necessarily a bad thing, the fingerprint scanner in the power button is really a perfect position to have, many android phones have done it and they've been right pretty much all along in some ways. It's actually better than face id you just put your finger on it you rest it, there for like half a second it unlocks almost always works. You don't have to look at the tablet to swipe up, it just makes a lot of sense and I personally love it. There's dual speakers on this device versus, quad on the ipad pro but they do still sound quite solid. There's usb-c for plugging in accessories drives and just charging up the ipad.

I'm very happy it's not lightning on this device at the back unlike the ipad pro there's no ultrawide camera or lidar sensor just the single rear camera it's good enough for taking photos or videos if you really have to as well as scans of documents with no issue. The front camera is good enough for video chats or if you want to show your face in online lectures i personally don't but it looks pretty good however it's still on the side of the tablet not the top so just keep that in mind it's kind of still an awkward placement also up front the bezels they are definitely a little bit thicker than the ipad pro if you see them side by side but in daily usage it's really not bad at all this is no previous generation ipad air ipad 8 these are still super thin bezels the tablet looks futuristic it looks modern it looks great and with these slightly thicker bezels the display goes down from 11 inches to 10.9 inches which is really not a huge difference the display is accurate it's beautiful it gets bright and is excellent for all tasks from watching videos to editing complex projects where color is important.

This display is sick versus the ipad pro the pro has a slightly brighter display at 600 nits versus 500 nits on the air but for my usage the air still gets plenty bright i have no problems with it at all but the bigger comparison point here is the refresh rate now the ipad pro is 120 hertz pro motion as we know while the air has 60 hertz there are definitely a few areas where 120 hertz is a great thing swiping around the os is smoother with a higher refresh rate gaming with games that support 120 hertz feels smoother and writing and drawing with the apple pencil is of course better on the ipad pro however apple does magic with 60hz on its devices and with the smooth animations and the reduced apple pencil latency from ipad os 14 the lack of 120 hertz is not a big deal now if you're buying your first ipad and pencil you'll be fine with the lack of this high refresh rate writing and drawing will still feel natural and there's little to no delay from putting your pencil on the screen and drawing a line or writing a letter it feels smooth but if you're switching from a previous generation ipad pro with hertz to this device you will definitely notice at first but within minutes you'll likely adapt.

I know personally for myself I've used 120 hertz on my ipad for about two years and switching to this was really not a huge change now you're probably dying to know so i'll skip right to it performance how does the ipad air 2020 compare to the ipad pro 2020 the air has the a14 and the ipad pro has the a12z processor and in the simplest of terms the grand scheme of things it's kind of the same speed now the ipad pro has two extra gigabytes of ram six gigabytes versus four gigabytes on the air and if we're talking benchmarks which i don't like to focus on the ipad pro is better with some things while the air is better with other things things certainly feel faster on the pro with 120 hertz of course but in actual performance in day-to-day performance and usage the speed is about the same opening apps on the air is fast there's really no delays multitasking works excellent but maybe the pro is a little bit faster and more capable with multi-apps because of the extra ram not a huge difference though gaming is fast and smooth you can play high-end games, more basic games, it's gonna be a great clean smooth experience and using creative apps like affinity photo and designer procreate and lightroom.

They all work perfectly even with complex multi-layer projects i've had no issues with my personal projects and chances are you'll be fine too video editing with an app like lumafusion is quite a solid experience and while editing thanks to the fast processor and ios optimizations you'll be able to edit videos that most computers including my own will have trouble with except it'll be very smooth on the ipad and when it comes to rendering the ipad pro is still the leader by a little bit i put together a 30 minute 4k video test in lumafusion and rendered it on my pro and air the pro finished first but the air finished just a short while after so the pro is still kind of the leader for intensive tasks like this but really not by much so as a summary performance i've pushed the ipad air to its absolute limits just as i pushed the ipad pro and have had no issues with speed whatsoever so if you're worried that the ipad air isn't fast enough versus the pro trust me you'll be fine and if you're worried that the new ipad pro that you just bought is gonna be slow versus the air.

It's the same the pro is a bit faster for some things but as I've said about five times now or so the air and the pro have very similar performance it's pretty much the same and for battery life it's a full day of usage no problem i use my tablet for watching videos typing up notes drawing in procreate editing photos and it always lasts and i end most days around 30 ish at around 10 10 30 at night i usually just charge it up in the evening or on lighter usage days i tend to have around 40 or 50 battery left giving me about two days before i really have to stop and charge the tablet completely and this battery life is about the same versus the ipad pro where i have very similar usage time using the ipad every day [Music] okay two hundred dollars you can do a lot with two hundred dollars and that is the difference in pricing between the ipad pro and the new 2020 ipad air besides the screen differences camera differences and specification differences those are the only things that separate the pro and the air as two different devices besides that they're pretty much the same except one of them costs less the one thing.

You may want to consider though is the storage options on these devices and how they correlate with the pricing the base model air is 64 gigabytes and tops out at 256 gigabytes versus the pro starting out at 128 gigabytes and going up to one terabyte of storage now depending on how you actually use your tablet 64 gigabytes may just be enough but for creative users doing creative tasks we all know that 64 gigabytes is not enough on this tablet so if you need more storage this is where things get a little bit tricky between the pro and the air so here's how I see it let's break this thing down if you need a 120 hertz refresh rate or those extra camera features you're sold on the pro if you know for a fact you can make do with 64 gigabytes or you have plenty of cloud storage the 600 starting price of the air is great and if you know for a fact you'll need a lot of storage like i mean a lot of storage the pro offers more storage tiers up to one terabyte as I mentioned.

In summary if you do buy the ipad air 2020 you're gonna love it it's a stellar experience a stellar tablet and the ipad is device that many of you know i personally love using it's great for school for creative work and at the end of a day just relaxing reading a book watching a movie playing a game it's excellent and the fact that the great ipad pro experience gets a bit cheaper is nothing but good news and also makes me wonder what the future of the ipad pro is like since these devices are just so close.