I was recently asked by a reader (Dave G) to do a comparison between the iPad1 and iPad2 in regard to performance with Autodesk Sketchbook Pro, so in this article I found an image off the web and performed some basic coloring tasks to it. For those that may not know what Autodesk Sketchbook Pro is, it’s a paint/drawing program originally created for Tablet PC’s. It later found itself a nice home on the iPhone and iPad. I’ve not been a heavy user of Sketchbook Pro for the iPad, simply because drawing on the iPad has been a bit hard for me to adjust to; having been a heavy tablet pc/wacom user for a long time. Not having the pixel precision I’m accustomed to has been a sore point for me and the IOS platform.
For the test, I picked a large 3000×3000 sized image from an artist named “TampTamp” at deviantart.com. It’s a nice simple line drawing of an anime girl. The test then is to see how well the two iPads performed the task of opening the image and coloring it.
The program loaded much faster on the iPad2 and the large image processed only slightly faster on the iPad2, before brining it up on the canvas to work with. The actual act of working with the image wasn’t very different between the two. Painting and using the airbrush tool didn’t feel all that different. I did however notice zooming and panning the image was a slight bit smoother on the iPad2.
The only conclusion I can make with this brief test is that the iPad2 will give you better load times and a bit more smoothness to your work. The one thing that does set the two devices apart is the display. Apple didn’t seem to make much mention of this, but the iPad2 has a brighter, more vibrant display than that of the original iPad. If price isn’t the deciding factor, the screen will make the jump to the iPad2 worth it. But the original iPad does a fine job as well, so you’ll need to weight those factors in making your decision. Other than that, Autodesk Sketchbook Pro is a great app to have on your iPad ().