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Ipad Mini arrives tomorrow

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#51 Starman81

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:19 AM

How has the Mini held up to actual use? I'm still on the fence as weather to get the Mini or the IPad2.


I have been using the iPad Mini a lot indoors the past 5-6 weeks and in the field for my last two sessions (1/9 and 1/14). I loved how lightweight and thin the Mini is, but for use in the field I purchased the Otterbox Defender case and let me say, the iPad Mini + Otterbox Defender case + SkySafari Pro combination is an absolute champ!! The Defender case lends the iPad ruggedness and protection that gives you peace of mind--it is reminiscent of those Panasonic Toughbooks! Using SSP in night mode (as you normally would while observing at night), the battery is conserved even more. A 2 hr session took the battery down only about 20% or so, being on 100% of the time.

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#52 Starman81

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:22 AM

The back of the case:

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#53 demiles

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:29 AM

Does the mini still fit in the pocket of the Dark Sky Apparrel observing vest with this case?

#54 Jeff Morgan

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 09:50 AM

I hate to say it, but I have had mine fall from a height of about 30" several times now. Kind of a long story - I'm a pilot and it relates to early attempts to clip it to the chart holder on the flight deck. Problem resolved now.

In any event, the only damage is a few scratches on the back of the case. It doesn't concern me much because it's not the type of item I would ever consider reselling. But it is nice to know the unit is fairly robust.

Like my iPhone, I expect it to take some wear over the years and depreciate until it gets replaced with a more capable model. My choice is to keep the slim lines for pocketability.

#55 Spaced

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 12:01 PM

iPad Mini Defender Case: Thanks, I hadn't heard about those. The installation video on the Otterbox website convinced me, & I just ordered one. I've been using iPad + Sky Safari with binocs & recliner a lot lately, and I worry about the iPad slipping off my lap onto the concrete. This looks perfect.

#56 Starman81

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 03:52 PM

I hate to say it, but I have had mine fall from a height of about 30" several times now. Kind of a long story - I'm a pilot and it relates to early attempts to clip it to the chart holder on the flight deck. Problem resolved now.

In any event, the only damage is a few scratches on the back of the case. It doesn't concern me much because it's not the type of item I would ever consider reselling. But it is nice to know the unit is fairly robust.

Like my iPhone, I expect it to take some wear over the years and depreciate until it gets replaced with a more capable model. My choice is to keep the slim lines for pocketability.


The slim lines and the svelte figure of the iPad Mini are definitely intoxicating! A nice half-measure would be to get a different kind of rugged case just for the metal back of the device and then perhaps a static cling type of screen protector that is commonly sold for smartphones. Make no mistake, the Otterbox Defender does change the entire look and feel of iPad Mini with the increased heft and thickness, but it has worked well for me both outdoors and indoors.

#57 ischua

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 05:49 PM

Picking it up Saturday :jump:

#58 ischua

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:38 AM

My first impression was Ok its going to be just like my Touch only bigger. NOT I had only ever used Sky Safari on my Touch and phone. I had no idea what I was missing! I hope all my other apps look as good.

#59 demiles

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:38 PM

Does the mini still fit in the pocket of the Dark Sky Apparrel observing vest with this case?


Since Best Buy had the Otter Box case on sale I picked one up and gave it try and yes it fit nicely in the pocket of the vest.

#60 JMW

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 12:45 PM

I keep my mini in a leather case with a flip cover. The case gives the screen protection from any fall with the screen landing directly on a rock. I working on a bracket that will mate the leather case to a bracket on my Discmount DM6. It would allow me to use it one handed and flip the leather flip cover down to reduce screen light when I am at the eyepiece.

I have the iPhone 5 and the 3rd generation retina iPad. The red screen view of the iPhone is a bit hard for my older eyes. The full size iPad works great but it is a bit heavy to keep on your person or adapting to a bracket. I think the mini is a good balance of readability and portability. The battery on the mini charges up faster than the retina version.

#61 Chucky

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 12:55 PM

<< I working on a bracket that will mate the leather case to a bracket on my Discmount DM6. >>

I'd like to see a picture of it when you are finished.






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