October 22, 2013

iPad Mini Gets 2K Retina Display & Apple Introduces a New Ultra-Thin & Light 'iPad Air'

Apple iPad Air Official PhotoApple wasn't just giving away free software and releasing official pricing and specs for the new Mac Pro, they were also unveiling new iPads. It has rumored for quite some time that an iPad Mini Retina with a 2K screen just like the larger iPad was coming, and sure enough we got it today. But what turned out to be more interesting, is just how small and light they've gotten the 9.7" iPad. The device is so much smaller and thinner that they are putting it in its own category, referring to is now as the iPad Air. Check out the official launch video for the iPad Air below:

Two launch videos they've created with it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VojB-jk3Ec

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ck2F73ggGWM

When Apple introduced the first iPad (all the way back in 2010), there was barely any competition in the tablet market, and since then there has been an absolute explosion in this market -- not unlike what happened with the iPhone. Companies like Samsung and Google have introduced extremely competitive devices (with Microsoft taking a slightly different route), while Apple has continued to refine the original design, and make it more powerful and lighter.

For many people, the original iPad was just a bit too big and heavy for many uses, and so Apple introduced the Mini. Now with the Mini Retina, they've got similar internals as the 9.7" iPad, but with a 7.9" 2048 x 1536 screen that has a higher pixel density than the larger iPad (326 vs. 264). This means that it should have an extremely crisp image for viewing all sorts of content. That pixel density is actually very similar to the iPhone Retina, so it will be interesting if Apple introduces a large iPad with a pixel density to match the Mini (an iPad 4K perhaps?). We'll just have to wait and see.

iPads have become the go-to tablet with filmmakers and other creatives, and with the introduction of the Retina iPad, watching dailies or rough cuts on the road was a much more enriching experience. Now with the Mini Retina, that same viewing experience can be had in a much smaller package -- one that many people can hold in one hand. There are also still plenty of useful apps that can make your life on set that much easier, and those made to take advantage of the extra resolution on the iPad Retina will be right at home with the Retina Mini.

In the meantime, before they ship, here is a brief hands on with the iPad Air, as well as one with the new iPad Mini Retina:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6XunU-iXwyc

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

Both will be available in November, with the Air shipping the 1st, and the Mini Retina trailing behind sometime later next month. Base configurations with WiFi will run you $400 for the Mini Retina and $500 for the iPad Air. They will still be selling the older version of both the iPad and iPad Mini, so if you want Apple but want it a little cheaper, you can still pick those up.

What do you think about the iPad Air? What about the iPad Mini Retina? Is that the perfect device for carrying around on set?

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Your Comment

30 Comments

No Mac hate here, but literally questioning relevance to making films. It's like no different from an iPad or Mini in terms of set functionality or purpose.

October 22, 2013 at 6:13PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Tyler

The problems i have found with doing any kind of editing, even vacation videos on the ipad is its basic lack of internal storage and extreme difficulty importing or downloading any 3rd party video to the device.

I do use my ipad for production to handle many documents: call lists, documents, releases, etc. But I don't see this as a serious editing tool anytime soon. imovie sucks for the current ipad. Pinnnacle Studio is better, but not even close to a pro tool. it's great for youtube vids that's it.

...but just to have a lighter device to carry around all day will be nice.

October 22, 2013 at 7:40PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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claude riban

You can stream dailies to them or even stream live feeds to them if you have an encoder like the Teradek cube plugged into a spare HMDI or SDI port on your camera. They make nice client monitors for review and approval of dailies and edits using software like that provided by Light Iron or for content management systems like Axle. Loads of uses!

October 24, 2013 at 10:55AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Will S

You've never seen an iPad on set?? Every department on almost everything except g&e. (And transpo, but considering that google maps works better than any garmin or Tom Tom I've ever used, they should prolly start getting RAM mounts and using those for navigation. (Just don't use Apple's Maps or they'll never get to location.)

November 2, 2013 at 11:03PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Daniel Mimura

yeah...android tablets are cool too...But I'm "all in" that in 4 months it will be updated and Apple will say is the best ipad ever...and then in 4 months again it will be reupdated....that's the crap I don't like from apple.

October 22, 2013 at 6:27PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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jesuan

Five iPad releases
Average time between release: 311 days
Shortest time between releases: 230 days

October 23, 2013 at 3:35PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Pippy

Wow, technology gets updated frequently. Thanks for sharing that brilliant discovery.

October 23, 2013 at 8:55PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Christian Anderson

You both AppleFanboys!!!!! you are insane!!!

October 24, 2013 at 5:47AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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jesuan

I'd be really interested to see what products you purchase that don't do "new and improved" marketing campaigns. You must drive a Yugo, the only major purchase that never got any better as time went by.

October 25, 2013 at 10:31AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Zan Shin

For the love of god will someone please put an HDMI in on one of these things!! then we just have to build some stable rigging and kick ass lightweight monitor on a rig.

October 22, 2013 at 6:29PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Chris Lambert

I know you can have an HDMI out so might it be possible to code an app that acts as an HDMI in...?

October 22, 2013 at 8:19PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Tyler

I know! I've been dying for someone to do this! It could even be an external attachment/adapter as long as there is minimal lag and full 1080p signal.

October 22, 2013 at 8:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Derek

You're more likely to see that come on an Android tablet in the near future, hear is hoping!

October 23, 2013 at 7:23AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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darn it..... *here*!

October 23, 2013 at 7:24AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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^ this

October 22, 2013 at 8:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Sico

I guess for productivity, the new Surface Pro from the "evil" microsoft may be a better choice... at least you can sketch in it fully and use some desktop software with it, it has way to connect to HDMI, has possibility of expansion the storage space, etc... ok it's not as sexy as an Apple product... but what should be sexy: the tools or the artwork? :)

Film-maker and animator Christy Karacas has a good review of the new Surface pro at Cartoonbrew.

cartoonbrew.com/tech/microsoft-surface-pro-tablet-review-by-christy-karacas-88859.html

cartoonbrew.com/tech/microsoft-recruits-superjail-creator-christy-karacas-to-sell-surface-tablets-88840.html

October 22, 2013 at 8:29PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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guto novo

yes. I hope more powerful tablets like that will hit the market in 2014, I don't care what manufacturer.
Something slim, lightweight to check footage and do quick edits on set besides using for backup.

October 23, 2013 at 7:24AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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hansd

This will be a great boon for the GH2, an edit power house while on the go.

October 23, 2013 at 5:46AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Shrieb

I too don't quite get the connection between filmmaking and Apple iPad mini/Air.
I'd say they get enough free marketing already, no?

October 23, 2013 at 7:25AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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hansd

could you at least link to some announcements or something instead of directly to the apple store?! :)

October 23, 2013 at 7:29AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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hansd

Yes your majesty.

October 23, 2013 at 12:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Sarcasm

There are some really good filmmaking apps for tablets, like the Hollywood Shot Designer. I think it is a must-have. It is pretty cumbersome to use on a phone because of the small screen, but a dream to use on a tablet. Of course, it is now also available for Android so one doesn't NEED an iPad to use it... so...

October 23, 2013 at 1:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Damon

I am very unimpressed with Apples lackovation since Jobs passed away. I moved to Note 3 and couldn't be happier because I waited for a bigger screen Iphone that the market demands. Yet they give us different color iphones. I CAN BUY A COVER OF ANY COLOR I CHOOSE. Most will cover the dam thing up anyway. Give me something I can't buy at wal mart. So frustrating that all they are giving is thinner lighter. Thats cool to a certain extent but come on now. Don't get me wrong the one thing I think they did a good job with is the new mac pros. Thats it though. So far its like 1-7 since Jobs left us.

October 23, 2013 at 8:43AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Buddy

Been waiting for the mini with retina, wanted something smaller than the regular ipad but wanted the retina screen as I keep hearing they have great color calibration.

October 23, 2013 at 11:47AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Austin

I'm disappointed by the new ipads. Where is the innovation? Faster and slimmer? Really?
I've been using Apple products for over 20 years and this is starting to remind me of the bad old stagnant days.

How about a pressure sentitive display like on the surface pro? It's as good as a Wacom for drawing (storyboards, concept art etc), but for less money and you get a full blown tablet running photoshop etc to boot.

Palm rejection? Hello?

Thin cover with built in keyboard?

How about a built in stand? Ive can figure out how to integrate a stand in to the ipad that won't add any thickness etc? Really? Who watches a movie or reads with the tablet flat on the table?

They couldn't update the camera to the same 8mp model in the iPhone 5s?

Ironically the most innovative thing Apple has done in years is the new Mac Pro and they have caught nothing but flak for it. It's barely on the radar of any of the press.

October 23, 2013 at 11:58AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Dan

It's these 2K 8" screens for $399 that look AMAZING that make me question why I paid $2800 for my SmallHD DP7.

October 24, 2013 at 2:05PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Jordy

I'd have to ask why you did as well, considering the Odyssey 7 is the exact same OLED screen and only costs $1300. Oh yeah, they haven't shipped... which is why I still struggle to get by with my seemingly ancient SmallHD DP6, DP1x and DP4

October 25, 2013 at 10:37AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Zan Shin

So you paid $2800 for a DP7 (which means you have the highbright option, right, cuz even the OLED version is hundreds less) & you wonder why you didn't just go with a $400 pad? Multiple power options and multiple connectors...cross converting HD-SDI and HDMI, built in SD card for frame grabs (as well as future ability to catch video), built in histograms (luma, RGB parade, small [customizable locations] or full screen), vectorscopes, 5 mounting points, the best focus peaking I've ever seen out of a monitor or a camera (granted, the AC7 has this too)...none of that mattered to you? You should've just saved $2400 then. I love my DP7 (and AC7...best monitors I've ever had or used.

November 2, 2013 at 11:28PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Daniel Mimura

I always have to wonder what all the really cool computers, tablets and cell phones are doing while their owners are online pissing about those who buy/use/love products from Apple.

Probably rebooting. :P

October 25, 2013 at 10:40AM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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Zan Shin

This device is supernatural can't wait
http://amzn.to/HW5O8D

November 18, 2013 at 10:20PM, Edited September 4, 11:21AM

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