Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Started Mar 18, 2011 | Discussions
Choice Regular Member • Posts: 381
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

The screen glare is easily fixed with a $10 matte overlay.

Sure, but then the screen looks like crap. You can also correct for all of the design shortcomings by buying this gizmo or that. But then you go from $600 tablet to a backpack full of gizmos that approaches a kilobuck.

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Barry Fitzgerald Forum Pro • Posts: 29,888
Apple has a history of this battery non accessibility

Choice wrote:

Conversely, why would any serious photographer choose that thinkpad over a 15" or 17" screen laptop?

Gee, I don't know, but maybe because he's already carrying loads of photo gear and doesn't want to add the 17" monstrosity that weighs 12 lbs and has 45 mins of battery life. A small but powerful laptop that can get 5-6 hours is a reasonable compromise. Especially since most photographers are dexterous enough to swap batteries (no matter what Steve Jobs thinks).

Unless you fancy having a go yourself!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qnjtvMCndcw

Any company that can't design a product that allows easy access to the battery (ala not taking it apart) is seriously lacking in the design department.

Of course some might say it's a cash cow to get users to send their Apple stuff back at a cost for replacement batteries.

I won't touch Apple products because of this.

And looking at that video you can see how little is in the actual unit I'd say quite a nice profit margin on these.

Choice Regular Member • Posts: 381
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Why should any serious photographer choose iPad over this?

http://www.techspot.com/news/42710-lenovo-readies-thinkpad-x220-with-sandy-bridge-ips-panel.html

That's simple. Battery life. You see, ipad battery tops out 10 hrs (12 max). The Thinkpad with 9 cell unit can go 15 hrs. Since batteries are swappable, that can be doubled or even tripled. When is this serious photographer going to get any sleep?

With quad core hyper-threaded CPU and 8 GB of RAM, he may spend all his time working in photoshop and not even bother with angry birds. The Rovio IPO would have to be canceled and the fragile ipad app industry would collapse wreaking devastation throughout all of world's economies and then where would we all be?

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Leswick Veteran Member • Posts: 3,102
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Outdoorphotgrapher hyped it up as a must have, but I see that a conventional laptop is way more useful to a photog. No point regurgitating all the pluses and minuses. Personally, I prefer to see things on 1920 (long way) screen even though I make no practice of editing in the field. Not being able to plug in CF/SD card...well, Mr Jobs you lost me immediately...and I no longer care if it could start my vehicle in the morning.

Although I don't have a cell phone (WHAT? I hear), it desn't mean that I don't embrace the technology. It's quite simple, I get what I need...and I have an extra thick firewall, in regard to the "latest and greatest". My pov.

Leswick

photo_rb Contributing Member • Posts: 717
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

If he only knows 12lb laptops with 45 min battery life, it's time for him to switch to a Mac.

Choice wrote:

Conversely, why would any serious photographer choose that thinkpad over a 15" or 17" screen laptop?

Gee, I don't know, but maybe because he's already carrying loads of photo gear and doesn't want to add the 17" monstrosity that weighs 12 lbs and has 45 mins of battery life. A small but powerful laptop that can get 5-6 hours is a reasonable compromise. Especially since most photographers are dexterous enough to swap batteries (no matter what Steve Jobs thinks).

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Mark B. Forum Pro • Posts: 25,283
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Barry Fitzgerald wrote:

Mark B. wrote:

I personally know pro photographers that would disagree with you. Post your reply above on the Pro Forum and see how many agree with you.

Do I care?

The range of chest bangers over on the pro forum is unrivalled

And I don't shoot Canon either but most would say they are the best brand to use something wrong with not following what others say or do?

I shoot Canon and I would also disagree with that statement. What's more important is the skill level of the photographer - not the name on the front of the camera. If Canon was the best why isn't every pro using it?

Nobody is saying that every pro should use an iPad. What I'm saying is don't be so close minded to say that just because you personally can't see the value, don't expand that to every photographer and say none should use it.

I don't have one, nor do I make a significant amount of money from photography. But I can see how it could be used in certain situations. It's obviously not meant as a laptop replacement; rather it is a supplement.

Problem is for the price it simply does not add up you really would be better served with a laptop. I prefer print for presentation myself no ipad will ever rival a real print
for displaying work to clients. Guess that's the old fashioned view..so be it!

Again, you're trying to compare it to a laptop which it's not. Ultra portability, instant start up & shut down, and ease of use are the strengths.

You're entitled to your opinion, but don't force it on everybody else. In your own words, "something wrong with not following what others say or do?"

Mark

Photomonkey Senior Member • Posts: 2,383
Re: Toy..

OK, I read a lot of the posts and I am still unclear as to why I "need" this thing.

Work with my images?

I use a desktop machine for beating them into submission, not some electro -etch-a -sketch that I may wish to use in an airport.

Moreover, why on earth would I want to be retouching outside my studio anyway? I don't want to work 24/7 or act like some poseur in an airport.

I am a professional. People come to my studio or visit my website to view my images. I do not meet people in Starbucks like a Craig's lister.

As for apps, I have yet to see any that are compelling. Many are cute but seldom rise beyond novelty.

In the end, once everyone is over the WOW factor it will be a ho-hum fashion accessory that everyone seems to own.

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ken138888 New Member • Posts: 2
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

I think it will be a tool

EWern New Member • Posts: 17
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

JulesJ wrote:

Doesn't have Flash
Jules

If you need Flash (and many sites are switching to alternatives) you can use the Skyfire browser to view Flash content without worry that your system will crash (as my Windows laptop frequently does):

http://www.skyfire.com/product/ipad

photo_rb Contributing Member • Posts: 717
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Actually it doesn't. I didn't notice a quality difference when I put the overlay on and no one else notices. Also I use my iPad in a lot of situations where it the screen can easily get scratched so it fulfills two functions.

Choice wrote:

The screen glare is easily fixed with a $10 matte overlay.

Sure, but then the screen looks like crap. You can also correct for all of the design shortcomings by buying this gizmo or that. But then you go from $600 tablet to a backpack full of gizmos that approaches a kilobuck.

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T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
Not meant to replace a laptop/desktop, people! It's a tool.

People have the impression that if the iPad doesn't fully replace a high powered laptop or desktop workstation, then it's just a toy. Well, the problem with that kind of thinking is that most, if not all, of us iPad owners already have powerful laptop and desktop workstations to do the "serious work" and heavy lifting of which you speak. Where the iPad comes in as to fill the slot between our laptop/desktop workstations, and...say...my cell phone.

For example, I already have a Windows desktop workstation, a 17" Windows laptop, a 13" Windows laptop, and a 4.3" Android phone. And yet with all these devices, I still find the iPad to be an extremely valuable tool!

So in spite of having all these other devices, how is the iPad still a valuable tool?

Well, for one thing, it has a gorgeous 24-bit near-studio-monitor quality screen that is wows anyone who looks at it, and that's valuable for when I show my images to potential clients. If you have any doubts on the quality of the iPad's screen, read here (links to various tests and reviews within):

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1014&message=37978697

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1014&message=37986184

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1014&message=38003132

Plus, it's a fraction of the weight of my laptops, has 10 hour battery life that blows away my laptops, and even when I do need to plug it in, the charger is barely larger than the charger for my cell phone! All this makes portability and freedom a major value-point of the iPad. When I leave the house to meet a client or go about town, all I need is my cell phone and my iPad.

As for storage capacity, sure I would love it if the iPad had a terabyte of storage. But I only have the 32GB iPad (first gen), and I've loaded it full of hundreds of images, including dozens of full-color PDF books and magazines (it's an excellent full-color magazine-sized PDF/book/magazine reader), a few movies (it's an excellent movie viewer as well), lots of apps (lots of very useful apps), and I still have room to spare. No, you can't bring every RAW file you've shot in the last few weeks, but why would you want to? If I want to work on my RAW files, I'll use my workstations.

As for its value to the professional photographer, I suggest you watch and hear what other well established photographers are saying about the iPad. This is fashion and celebrity photographer Challenge Roddie, talking about how valuable the iPad has been for him:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23Ud66j47eA&feature=related (jump to 2:30 to get to the meat of what he's talking about)

And here's the perspective of an iPad skeptic, commercial & editorial photographer Sara Rossignol:

http://www.piewacketblog.com/journal/2010/6/8/the-ipad-according-to-pie.html

Of course, there are some people who will scream that because the iPad can't do everything that their laptop or desktop PC's can do, it's just a toy. But conversely, there are things that my iPad can do that can't be done on my laptop and desktop PC. Each tool has its place. When you open a toolbox full of tools , you find that there are a wide variety of tools that do different things well. There's no one tool that can do everything well. That's how I see my Windows PCs, my iPad, and my Android phone. Each is a tool , and each has its own inherent value . Yes, they have overlap in what they can do. But they also have their own strengths.

Unum sed Leonem wrote:

Obviously, a toy.
Let me explain:

  • 132 PPI pixel density.

  • Starts at 16 GB storage.

  • Does not work with a Wacom pen (or similar); is capacitative-input only!

  • Undefined display profile; shows colours very differently than a (calibrated) desktop.

Let me clarify for the uninitiated. The following is required for it to be seriously considered for proper work:

  • Must be minimum of 300 PPI or more pixel density.

  • 16 GB! That's quite the joke! 128 GB at the very, very minimum at this point! In two-three years, 500 GB minimum would do. Not 16!

  • Capacitative touchscreen technology is in most respects excellent! But for serious work it will never suffice. A dual-input (capacitative touch and Wacom pen) would suffice very well for photographers' needs - both professional and personal. Nothing less will.

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T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
get both

xperimental wrote:

Why should any serious photographer choose iPad over this?

http://www.techspot.com/news/42710-lenovo-readies-thinkpad-x220-with-sandy-bridge-ips-panel.html

Why can't a serious photographer get both? A laptop has its advantages, and an iPad has its advantages.

For example, I have a 17" Windows laptop, a 13" Windows laptop, and an iPad (all of which can be seen below). Each has value to me. But I can definitely tell you this: when I am out and about, or meeting with clients, or on a shoot, the only thing I take with me is my iPad...not my laptops.

Also, the thing about these smaller laptops with their widescreens is that while images may look nice in landscape orientation, images look way too small when they are portrait orientation images! With an iPad, you can turn it to portrait orientation, which means portraits can be viewed with a vertical height of 8 inches, which is much taller than what you're going to get with that Thinkpad. That makes a big difference when you're meeting with clients.

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T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
display quality info

whitebird wrote:

In addition to a reported "leak" of the LED back light around edges of the screen, there have also been some comments concerning black level and contrast in comparison to first revision (and some other tablets as well). The screens are also very glossy, and can be a problem in some light.

Display quality, color rendition, contrast, and reflectivity would all certainly would impact the device's usefulness as a photographer's tool. Perhaps that could be an addendum to the article?

I'm sure you've heard of the photographic and print guru, Ctein? He's fellow contributing editor to Photo Techniques Magazine. Writer of such highly regarded books as "Post Exposure" and "Digital Restoration." Double degree from Caltech. Written over 250 articles and manuals on photographic topics. The man has been around a long time, has enormous experience, and is very well respected.

"Part fine-art photographer and part computer wizard." — Photo District News

"Ctein is an exceptionally fine printer — one of the last of the true old-fashioned photographic craftsmen. And the guy has a mind like an encyclopaedia." — Mike Johnston , Editor, PHOTO Techniques

Needless to say, he's a very well regarded person, very knowledgeable, and very demanding when it comes to the equipment and monitor screens he works with. Very demanding. Here's what Ctein had to say about the iPad's screen:

"The day they came out, in early April, my friend Mark Richards bought one. He showed it to me that weekend. I pulled up some difficult-to-render photographs from my website and pixel-peeped like mad. The iPad had a near-studio-quality display . (Truth is I've seen studio displays that were worse; I'm just very fussy.) The iPad held gamma well with changing viewing angle, and if it wasn't running full 24-bit color with no dithering, it was faking it well enough that I couldn't tell."

After careful consideration and testing, he eventually bought one, and here's what he had to say:

"iPad color out of the box is acceptable. Not as good as a studio monitor, but close enough for serious work, and much, much better than anything I could get in a portable device before. I can use it for making serious refinements to a photograph, which was, after all, the point."

And...

"There went a grand, but what did that get me? A portable dual-display rig with a studio-quality display that's touch sensitive, so I can brush directly on the photo I'm working on. Definitely worth it to me."

Read the full article here:

http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2010/07/why-i-needed-an-ipad.html

There's also Anandtech's test:

"We also measured and were able to get color gamut volumes and uncalibrated Delta-E performance as well. However, we're not entirely convinced that these numbers are sound. The remote desktop software common to the iPad and iPhone 3GS we used offered 24 bit color depth at maximum, and the test results for both the iPhone 3GS and iPad turned out very similar. We're talking down to 0.01 Delta-E in some cases. For that reason, we're excluding the data we've obtained for color tracking until we're positive the numbers are right. Of course, the iPad itself remains 24-bit color, same as in previous versions of iPhone OS.

...Whatever the numbers say, the display is beautiful in use and blows away most others."

http://www.anandtech.com/show/3640/apples-ipad-the-anandtech-review/7

And there's Displaymates test:
http://www.displaymate.com/iPad_2_ShootOut.htm

As for the glossy screen, I put a semi-matte screen protector on it which greatly diminishes finger smudges and all but eliminates glossy reflection. But even without the screen protector, the gloss screen and smudges were never really an issue when directly viewing the iPad screen. I found it was only distracting when in very bright environments, or when the iPad was turned off. The funny thing is that I could be using the iPad for an hour with no problems, then only when I turned the iPad off did I then realize "wow, look at all those smudges!" Haha.

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princewolf Regular Member • Posts: 152
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Steve Jobbs is a genius. But he is not an engineering genius. He's a marketing genius. Indeed, promoting such a low performance tool for such a price calls for some exquisite marketing skills, and Apple seems to have them. There are items that cost a lot but deserve them(like some Leica or Mamiya cameras-but not all), but in this case material value is far exceeded by the price. Still, I will never judge people on what they spend their money on, so if I offended some I apologize for that.

In a wider angle, it seems a breaking point in and itself that DPReview is putting to the headline not a camera, not a photographic software, not a memory device, but a tablet PC. It speaks volumes of what photography has come to mean(or what it should mean). In my humble opinion it's an obscene invasion of the photography field, but there sure will be other opinions. I'm a computer engineer, don't blame me for hating computers

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Barry Fitzgerald Forum Pro • Posts: 29,888
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

princewolf wrote:

Steve Jobbs is a genius. But he is not an engineering genius. He's a marketing genius. Indeed, promoting such a low performance tool for such a price calls for some exquisite marketing skills, and Apple seems to have them. There are items that cost a lot but deserve them(like some Leica or Mamiya cameras-but not all), but in this case material value is far exceeded by the price. Still, I will never judge people on what they spend their money on, so if I offended some I apologize for that.

I agree they are masters of marketing.

PC builders will know from experience that an Apple computer is merely a PC in a nice case with an Apple OS and you pay so very much more for that their margins are massive.

But it works and Apple are good at that some see beyond the nice cases and sexy looks. Their products are not really that great they look "cool" people want them even the Ipod is nothing special as a music player but it's simple and trendy.

I admire their ability to wangle cash out of the consumer markets but in many cases the products are not really all that anyway. Practical types don't buy Apple

Unfortunately the web hype does not help as their products get undue coverage. We should not even be talking about the Ipad it's got nothing at all to do with photography.

T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

princewolf wrote:

Steve Jobbs is a genius. But he is not an engineering genius. He's a marketing genius. Indeed, promoting such a low performance tool for such a price calls for some exquisite marketing skills, and Apple seems to have them. There are items that cost a lot but deserve them(like some Leica or Mamiya cameras-but not all), but in this case material value is far exceeded by the price. Still, I will never judge people on what they spend their money on, so if I offended some I apologize for that.

In terms of price, people tend to forget that unsubsidized smart phones cost about just as much (proportionally) to an iPad, if not more (proportionally speaking). Furthermore, competing tablets are struggling to compete with the low cost of the iPad. The Motorola Xoom was initially priced much higher than the iPad, showing just how difficult it is to hit the iPad's low price point. But realizing that they would have difficulty competing with the iPad, Motorola was forced to lower their price down to the iPad's price point. Also keep in mind that when the first-gen iPad was introduced, its price was well below the expected price for such a tablet device. Industry experts were expecting such a device to have an initial introductory price hovering around $1000. Like it or not, a lot of this is due to smart engineering on Apple's part. And we, the consumer, all benefit from this because what many people consider to be "expensive" devices are actually several hundred dollars less expensive than most experts expected them to be, thanks to the low price bar Apple set with their first iPad.

The irony is that Apple has actually become the price leader in certain devices. Strange but true. Take, for example, their MacBook Air. Samsung recently came out with a competitor to the Macbook Air. But Samsung's Macbook Air competitor, the 9 series, is $300 more expensive than the Air.

http://blogs.forbes.com/briancaulfield/2011/03/17/samsungs-macbook-air-competitor-costs-300-more-than-the-macbook-air/

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princewolf Regular Member • Posts: 152
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Spot on.

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T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

Barry Fitzgerald wrote:

Practical types don't buy Apple

You're talking to people on a forum who spend hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on photography equipment, many of whom don't make a single dime off of these expenditures. Most people here choose and buy equipment for the sheer pleasure of using the equipment. And you're talking about "practical types?" Haha. And even more absurdly, your comment on "practical types" follows someone who just implied that things like $7,000 Leica cameras "deserve" to cost that much, while lambasting a $500-800 iPad as a product where "material value is far exceeded by the price." Huh? If anything, it's the Leicas whose "material value is far exceeded by the price"!!! If you want to talk about a cult of impractical types who buy objects whose "material value is far exceed by the price", take a look at Leicaphiles.

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Barry Fitzgerald Forum Pro • Posts: 29,888
Re: Just posted: Apple iPad 2: Tool or Toy?

T3 wrote:

You're talking to people on a forum who spend hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on photography equipment, many of whom don't make a single dime off of these expenditures. Most people here choose and buy equipment for the sheer pleasure of using the equipment. And you're talking about "practical types?" Haha. And even more absurdly, your comment on "practical types" follows someone who just implied that things like $7,000 Leica cameras "deserve" to cost that much, while lambasting a $500-800 iPad as a product where "material value is far exceeded by the price." Huh? If anything, it's the Leicas whose "material value is far exceeded by the price"!!! If you want to talk about a cult of impractical types who buy objects whose "material value is far exceed by the price", take a look at Leicaphiles.

Fair point but whatever the feelings it's beyond debate that as neat and nice as the Ipad is it's a fairly limited tool for photographers.

The practical point is mainly in reference to the "non battery accessible" design on most of their products batteries wear out and it's little more than an obvious cash cow for the company.

As far as computers go price any desktop Mac up and I could build one better faster and cheaper using very high quality components with ease so could any system builder they just don't stack up computers wise. Don't get me wrong the OS is nice but it's a heavy price to pay when you should have more hardware choices at more reasonable prices. Just add a ram upgrade to a Mac at an Apple store and you'll see what I mean!

T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,166
"fairly limited tool" put into perspective

Barry Fitzgerald wrote:

Fair point but whatever the feelings it's beyond debate that as neat and nice as the Ipad is it's a fairly limited tool for photographers.

Fairly limited tool for photographers? Haha. Most of the things photographers buy are "fairly limited tool."

For example, I have a Canon 24mm TS-E. Price: $2000. I also have a Canon 45mm TS-E. Price: $1300. I also have a Canon 35/1.4L. Price: $1300. (See them below.) And that's just a fraction of the lenses I own. One can say that all these items are "fairly limited" in what they can do, even for photographers like myself who decided to buy them!

Last year I also bought a set of Pocket Wizard E-TTL transmitters. The MiniTT was $200. The FlexTT's were $220 each. I just added the ZoneController for $70. Total price: $710. And the thing doesn't even run any apps!!! Haha! And the truth is, I really don't get as much use out of the Pocket Wizards as I thought I would. It's something I only use once in a while. Especially now that the 60D also has built-in wireless E-TTL triggering. I don't regret buying them, but I accept that they are a very "fairly limited" tool.

The fact of the matter is that, out of all these items I listed above, none of them gets anywhere near as much use as my iPad. I use my iPad every day. I use to to show images to potential clients. I take it to shoots so I can show models and clients sample images and sample poses I want them to do. I use it to review images with my clients after I've processed them. You can even shoot to it wirelessly with an Eye-Fi card.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4lROinj2FrY

All these iPad uses far exceed the "fairly limited" photographic products I mentioned earlier. If I actually calculate the amount of use I get out of iPad, and weigh it against how much I paid for it, the iPad is actually a tremendous value. And it also helps me make money, too!!!

You also have to keep in mind that we used to put together hardcopy print portfolios that could easily cost in the hundreds of dollars back in the days before the iPad. And a portfolio book couldn't carry the hundreds of images that we now carry in our magazine-thin iPads. So we can also say that a hardcopy print portfolio was also something that was a "fairly limited tool" for photographers. I don't remember being able to run any apps on my portfolio book!

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