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iPad pro vs iPad air for students: Which one is best For You?

For years, the battle between an iPad Pro and an iPad Air for students was always considered to be one-sided. The iPad Pro was granted victory because of its more powerful features and unique security features, such as facial recognition, not available on the iPad Air.

However, of late, the need for portability has been highly considered over efficacy, especially by students. Most college and high school students today prefer an iPad that is not only powerful but also easy to carry around from one lecture to another.

The small iPad Air is easier to carry compared to the iPad Pro. Additionally, the iPad Air has an equally long 10-hour battery life, just like the iPad Pro. This makes it possible to use it away from a consistent power source or when traveling.

This iPad Air tablet uses the same processors used in the MacBook Air and its competitor, the iPad Pro. After its launch and the revamp, so many creatives have been bombarded with the question of whether the iPad Air is good for creative work. 

After using both of them, especially the 5th Gen iPad Air, we are convinced that this iPad Air has no huge difference from the iPad Pro in terms of power and performance. It is only slightly faster thanks to the faster M2 chip on the iPad Pro instead of the M1 processor on the iPad Air.

With most iPad Pro features, you can work on your projects flawlessly like never before. If you’re yet to attain the iPad Pro’s budget, then you can go for the Air and still make the most of it. 

IPad Pro vs. iPad Air Comparison

For years, the battle between an iPad Pro and an iPad Air for students was always considered to be one-sided. The iPad Pro was granted victory because of its more powerful features and unique security features, such as facial recognition, not available on the iPad Air.

However, of late, the need for portability has been highly considered over efficacy, especially by students. Most college and high school students today prefer an iPad that is not only powerful but also easy to carry around from one lecture to another.

The small iPad Air is easier to carry compared to the iPad Pro. Additionally, the iPad Air has an equally long 10-hour battery life, just like the iPad Pro. This makes it possible to use it away from a consistent power source or when traveling.

This iPad Air tablet uses the same processors used in the MacBook Air and its competitor, the iPad Pro. After its launch and the revamp, so many creatives have been bombarded with the question of whether the iPad Air is good for creative work. 

After using both of them, especially the 5th Gen iPad Air, we are convinced that this iPad Air has no huge difference from the iPad Pro in terms of power and performance. It is only slightly faster thanks to the faster M2 chip on the iPad Pro instead of the M1 processor on the iPad Air.

With most iPad Pro features, you can work on your projects flawlessly like never before. If you’re yet to attain the iPad Pro’s budget, then you can go for the Air and still make the most of it. 

iPad pro vs iPad air for students

Apple iPad Pro

  • Apple M2 chip processor for next-level performance
  • Large and brilliant 12.9-inch screen size with Liquid Retina XDR display
  • 2732×2048 Pixel Resolution
  • Good 12 MP wide rear camera, 10 MP ultra wide rear camera, and front 12 MP camera
  • Long (12-hour battery life)
  • Cool Facial ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay
  • Four-speaker audio and five studio-quality microphones
  • Support for Apple Pencil (2nd generation), Magic Keyboard, and Smart Keyboard Folio

Screen and Display

As an artist, the most important thing to check for in a laptop is the display. The display carries everything essential that determines the quality of your drawings, like resolution, viewing angle, and color accuracy. 

Most cheap tablets tend to compromise on the features above. But that’s not the case with the iPad Air when we put it against the iPad Pro. Below is a detailed report of the display between the iPad Pro 12.9-inch and the iPad Air.

Display Size: 11 inches

Color Accuracy : Wide color display

Refresh Rate: 60Hz

Resolution: 2360×1640 pixels

Brightness : 500 nits

Apple Pencil 2

Apple M1 Processor

Display Size: 12.9 inches

Color Accuracy : Wide color display

Refresh Rate: 120Hz

Resolution: 2732×2048 Pixels

Brightness : 1000 nits

Apple Pencil 2

Apple M2 Processor

Based on the report above, the iPad Pro 12.9 seems to be more powerful than the iPad Air. However, the difference will seem slight when compared to the smaller iPad Pro 11 inch.

If you work outdoors most of the time, then the iPad Air’s brightness might not be good enough. This means that you might need to go for the Pro 12.9 inch with 1000 nits or the Pro 11 inch with 600 nits of brightness levels. 

Display Sharpness

When it comes to sharpness, the two tablets simply have the same strengths. With 264 pixels per inch and a slight difference in resolution, the iPad Pro and the iPad Air seem to deliver the same amount of display sharpness. 

Refresh Rate

This is where the iPad Pro beats the iPad Air big time. With a refresh rate of 120 Hz, it means that the iPad Pro screen takes approximately 60 seconds to update when drawing. The iPad Air, on the other hand, takes twice as long to refresh the screen. 

Stylus Compatibility

For quite a while, the Wacom Stylus has been receiving so much glory as far as creativity is concerned. The Apple Stylus 2nd Generation is a great one too.

The fact that both the iPad Pro and iPad Air are compatible with this Apple Stylus means that the drawing experience of both tablets is pretty much similar. 

Processor

Both the iPad Pro and iPad Air use an M1 chip that makes your drawing experience flawless. A good tablet should have a powerful processor to handle large-resolution projects. 

The M1 chip is basically a MacBook’s processor, so getting yourself the iPad Pro or iPad Pro means you’re purchasing an iPad with super high-level performance. 

Storage

You need enough storage for your projects, and for that reason, most creatives check for storage after display. The iPad Air comes in two versions, one with 64 GB of storage and the other with 264 GB of storage. On the other hand, the iPad Pro has many storage options to choose from, starting at 128GB and going up to 1TB.

While larger storage is the best choice, you need to understand that the larger the storage, the more you’re going to pay for it. 

RAM

Both the iPad Pro and Air come with 8 GB of RAM. This means that you can have multiple layers in drawing apps. RAM also plays a vital role in multitasking. A tablet with low RAM limits you so much that you cannot multitask. 

Design 

iPads are usually super slim, and that is where they take the mantle most of the time. With their slim design, iPads are more portable than other tablet brands and are ideal when working remotely. 

Camera

As a creative, you also need a drawing tablet with a good camera for your projects. You might want to snap an important thing to paint later. 

Both iPads have powerful 12 MP cameras, with the iPad Air coming with a single rear camera and the iPad Pro with three rear cameras. Both also have 12 MP front cameras for webcams and selfies. 

Battery Life

iPads are good when it comes to battery life. Ideally, most of them can serve you for up to 12 hours. However, the battery life mainly depends on several factors, like the apps you’re using, display size, and resolution, among others. 

Both the iPad Pro and iPad Air have the same battery capacity of 28.6 W. It runs for approximately 10 hours of continuous use.

What is the main difference between the iPad Pro and the iPad Air?

iPad pro vs iPad air for students-01

The biggest difference between these two tablets is their refresh rate. While the iPad Pro has a whooping refresh rate of 120 Hz, the iPad Air comes with half the refresh rate of 60 Hz. 

Although this difference is huge, the iPad Air still offers you an amazing drawing experience. The iPad Pro, on the other hand, is smoother and offers a smoother feeling when drawing. If you are wondering what the difference is between iPads and regular tablets, check out our earlier post.

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  1. What’s the best tablet for you between the iPad Pro and the iPad Air?

    The answer to this question depends mainly on your needs. If you want a compact iPad, an iPad Pro 12-inch would be out of the question. Both the iPad Air and iPad Pro have a compact design, so choosing one is easy. There are many features that can help you pick your perfect match. Check out the main differences below before you take your next step. 

  2. <strong>Is the iPad Air good for drawing</strong>?

    Yes, the iPad Air is generally considered to be a good option for drawing and digital art. It offers a balance of performance and powerful features that make it suitable for both beginner and pro artists.