iPad Pro 2021 vs iPad Pro 2020: Should I upgrade?

apple m1 chip

The iPad Pro 2021 brings major improvements over the iPad Pro 2020. These include the powerful Apple M1 processor and, in the 12.9-inch model, a high-contrast mini-LED display. Nevertheless, the switch is not worth it for everyone. Here we clarify who should get the new iPad Pro 2021.

Performance: Is the 2021 iPad Pro too powerful for a tablet?

Both that iPad Pro 11 2021 like that iPad Pro 12.9 2021 rely on the Apple M1 as the processor. It is the same power-saving, high-performance chip that is also found in the current MacBooks. In these he has demonstrated an extremely high performance, which is quite comparable to that of Include Intel’s mobile Core i7 and even Core i9 processors can.

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The Apple M1 is the most powerful chip ever found in a tablet.

Image: © Apple 2020

According to Apple, the processor power of the iPad Pro 2021 to those of the iPad Pro 2020 with its Apple A12Z 50 percent outbid. the graphics performance supposed to 40 percent be higher. This raises the question of whether the iPad Pro 2021 might even be unnecessarily powerful for a tablet. In other words, it is still unclear why such a high level of performance is needed at all.

Like Preslav Kateliev on phone arena writes, the iPadOS operating system is still designed for tablet use rather than laptop-style productivity. Maybe Apple will make the iPad Pro 2021 better equipped to work with multiple windows like on Mac or Windows with a future iPadOS update. But there is no announcement yet.

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In any case, the iPad Pro 2021 should be more than fast enough for the most demanding iPad apps of the coming years.

Display: iPad Pro 12.9 2021 with Mini LED Display

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Mini LEDs improve the brightness and contrast of the iPad Pro 12.9 2021.

Image: © Apple 2021

Revolution number 2 is reserved for the larger iPad Pro 12.9 2021. The new iPad 11 is still content with an IPS display with a flexible refresh rate of up to 120 Hertz (“Liquid Retina”). The iPad Pro 12.9 comes with a mini LED display called “Liquid Retina XDR”. This can illuminate the entire display with a brightness of 1,000 nits in HDR mode and the maximum brightness of HDR highlights in parts of the display is included 1,600 nits. This corresponds approximately to the level of the new one Samsung Neo QLED TVs called Samsung QN90A, the 4K flagship TV in the series.

For comparison: The 12.9-inch iPad Pro 2020 only managed up to around 600 nits. The practical advantage of the Liquid Retina XDR is limited to the Production and viewing of HDR content. However, it should be particularly suitable for this. The iPad Pros of the year 2020 cannot keep up with regular IPS displays, although these already rely on “Liquid Retina” technology with up to 120 Hertz.

The mini-LED technology of the iPad Pro 12.9 2021 relies on small LED lights for the backlight. So it’s not a self-illuminating technology like OLED, so the lighting is less precise. In practice, the difference to OLED with a 12.9-inch screen is likely 10,000 mini LEDs and 2,596 dimming zones however, be low. The advantage of mini-LED technology over OLED probably outweighs this, specifically the higher brightness.

The display of the 12.9-inch model has a resolution of 2,732 x 2,048 pixels, has a flexible refresh rate of up to 120 Hertz, covers the HDR color space DCI-P3 and can be used with the 2nd generation Apple Pencil to be served. The display of the 11-inch model has a resolution of 2388×1668 pixels and also covers the P3 color space. The brightness is a maximum of 600 nits and the Apple Pencil 2 is also supported.

Technical equipment: Up to 16 GB of RAM, 5G and a new webcam

While the iPad Pro 2020 had to make do with 6 GB of RAM, the iPad Pro 2021 comes with it, depending on the model 8 or 16 GB of memory. This comes in handy for demanding image processing apps such as Photoshop and for video editing programs.

While the 2020 iPad Pro is also available as an LTE model, the 2021 iPad Pros are optionally available with one 5G modem equipped for nano SIM and eSIM cards. These models cost around 170 euros more. The USB-C connection is now included thunderbolt 3 compatible. External displays with up to 6K resolution can also be connected thanks to DisplayPort 1.4a functionality.

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The previous accessories are also compatible with the new models.

Image: © Apple 2021

While the iPad Pro 2020 can be purchased with up to 1TB of storage, the iPad Pro 2021 brings up to 2TB With. Certainly welcome for some of those users who want to use it for video editing. The cameras on the back are the same: a 12-megapixel main camera, a 10-megapixel ultra-wide camera and a LIDAR sensor.

The selfie camera now has a resolution of 12 megapixels instead of 7 megapixels. And she has one 120 degree wide angle lens. This is useful if you want more users to appear on the video call. The “Center Stage” feature tracks the user and keeps the focus on him. The four speakers have been retained in the new iPad Pro.

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Compare prices

As powerful as the new iPad Pros are, they cost as much. These are prices for which you could also buy a good Windows laptop or, in some cases, a MacBook. the Prices of the 2020 models have now fallen, which is why a comparison might be appropriate for some. The iPad Pro 11 2020 is currently available for starting prices in the range of 750 to 800 euros, the iPad Pro 12.9 2020 is available from around 1,000 euros.

The new tablets cost a fair bit more. The iPad Pro 11 2021 is available from 880 euros, the iPad Pro 12.9 2021 from 1,200 euros.

Conclusion: Who Should Upgrade to the iPad Pro 2021?

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The 2021 models are available as new acquisitions.

Image: © Apple 2021

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If you don’t have an iPad Pro yet, you should generally use one of the new models. The technical upgrade has it all this year. The processor calculates much faster, the “Liquid Retina XDR” display of the 12.9-inch model is probably much better. It’s probably about that most significant upgrade of an iPad generation to the next. Only those who absolutely want to save money and are interested in the 11-inch model could also be satisfied with the 2020 tablet at a good price.

iPad Pro 12.9 2020 iPad Pro 12.9 2021
Chip: A12Z Bionic Chip: M1
Memory: 6GB RAM: 8 or 16 GB
Cellular: 4G Cellular: 5G
Port: USB-C Port: Thunderbolt 3 / USB 4
Maximum storage: 1TB Maximum storage: 2TB
Front camera: 7 MP Front camera: 12 MP with ultra wide angle
Display: IPS, 120 hertz, up to 600 nits Display: Mini LED IPS, 120 hertz, up to 1,600 nits

However, not everyone needs an upgrade. If you can work well with your iPad Pro, you don’t need a new one. However, the iPad Pro 12.9 2021 should be particularly tempting for those who Video editing with HDR content want to do with it. For this purpose, the upgrade is expected to be noticeable.