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  #1  
Old 06-23-2018, 01:43 PM
13brv3's Avatar
13brv3 13brv3 is offline
 
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Location: Tellico Plains, TN
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Default Any tips for using an iPad in flight?

Greetings,

On my limited space RV-3B panel, I mounted an iPad Mini 4 to use for navigation, and flight information. I'm primarily using FlyQ now, but also have a WingX subscription, and my ForeFlight year just ended, so I've tried those 3 software packages. I have two problems with using the iPad mini 4.

First problem is readability. It's a good display for a tablet, but not up to the better displays that are made for aircraft. When you couple bright sun, clear canopy, and sunglasses, it can be a little hard to see the screen, and the difference is night and day compared to the Dynon D180 next to it.

The biggest problem though is being able to actually use it with even the slightest turbulence. The buttons or symbols you have to tap are typically small, and it's so easy to hit next to the button, or be moving when you touch the screen. One picks the wrong function (that you have to try to get out of), and the other just scrolls the screen a little.

It's really frustrating to have so much good information available, but not be able to use it. Does anyone have any tips for making this easier to use? I did try changing the touch setting to require 0.1 sec touch to make it less sensitive, but I can't say that helped.

On another note, my iPad died in flight 13 days after the warranty ran out. I'm not really an Apple fan, but to their credit, they covered the replacement, and turned it around in record time. They sent a box for my dead iPad Monday, and by Thursday I had the replacement in hand. Pretty impressive!

Thanks,
Rusty
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  #2  
Old 06-23-2018, 02:26 PM
scsmith scsmith is offline
 
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...snip...
Quote:
Originally Posted by 13brv3 View Post
On another note, my iPad died in flight 13 days after the warranty ran out. I'm not really an Apple fan, but to their credit, they covered the replacement, and turned it around in record time. They sent a box for my dead iPad Monday, and by Thursday I had the replacement in hand. Pretty impressive!
...snip...

Maybe you should be!

The only constructive suggestions I can offer are that there are anti-glare screen protectors that you can apply that help some with sunlight readability, and that there are different flavors of iPads, some of the more recent models do have brighter screens.
So far, I have not found that the anti-glare screen protectors help 'enough'.

I have not tried the newer brighter iPads -- the one I tried was an iPad2, a long time ago. I seem to recall that your model, the iPad mini 4, was among the better ones? (others hopefully will comment on that) So you already may have the best it is going to get. Sad, I know, its such a great tool, but for us full-canopy guys, just not bright enough.
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Last edited by scsmith : 06-23-2018 at 02:29 PM.
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  #3  
Old 06-23-2018, 02:45 PM
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13brv3 13brv3 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scsmith View Post
I seem to recall that your model, the iPad mini 4, was among the better ones? (others hopefully will comment on that) So you already may have the best it is going to get. Sad, I know, its such a great tool, but for us full-canopy guys, just not bright enough.
You're correct, and that's one of the reasons I ended up with the Mini 4. The screen is pretty excellent, and was rated at 450 nits I believe. When the Pro 10.5 came out, I ordered one to compare, since it was rated at 600 nits. Side by side, in the sun, I couldn't tell any significant difference, and the 10.5 would have been hard to fit on the panel, so I sent it back.

If the brightness was the only issue, I could come up with some sort of sun screen for it, but using the touchscreen is a much bigger problem. It would be nice to try something like a handheld mouse, where you could position a cursor, then click a separate button as the "touch". Since that's not how these things were made to be used, it doesn't look like there's such a device out there.

Rusty
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  #4  
Old 06-23-2018, 03:34 PM
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snopercod snopercod is offline
 
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Yeah, even on a full-sized iPad, it's difficult to tap the right thing when you're bouncing around in turbulence. The only thing I can suggest is use a "tablet stylus". You could tether it to the iPad mount.
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  #5  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:06 PM
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13brv3 13brv3 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopercod View Post
Yeah, even on a full-sized iPad, it's difficult to tap the right thing when you're bouncing around in turbulence. The only thing I can suggest is use a "tablet stylus". You could tether it to the iPad mount.
Hmmmm, that's something I hadn't thought about. I see it has to be a special capacitive type stylus, so I'll have to pick one up to try. It seems like it might have the same problem as using your finger, but it's well worth the cost to give it a shot.

Thanks,
Rusty
__________________
RV-8, SN-80587, built, flown, sold.
RV-3B, SN-10751, rotary engine, built, flown, sold
RV-8, SN-82470, built, flown, sold.
RV-3B, SN-11351, purchased (yes it's cheating)
A&P - 2018 dues paid
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  #6  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:14 PM
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Larry DeCamp Larry DeCamp is offline
 
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Default Alternatives

Just in case you give up on the ipad, get an ifly 740. It is so good with bubble canopy, polarized sunglasses and turbulance that I regulary second guess my decision to do G3x (overkill) on my RV4.
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  #7  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:14 PM
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Carl Froehlich Carl Froehlich is offline
 
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Iíll be the contrarian. The problems you list demonstrate that an iPad is a great flight planning tool, but nothing more that the third backup or something to play with while flying.

You best path forward it to bite the bullet and put a real EFIS in the panel.

Carl
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  #8  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:16 PM
rv7charlie rv7charlie is online now
 
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http://www.displaymate.com/Tablet_ShootOut_4.htm

For 5 year old discontinued tech. Just sayin'...
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  #9  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:35 PM
Bevan Bevan is offline
 
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Location: BC
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IPAD mini 4 with FltPlanGo has been excellent in the cockpit with bubble canopy RV7A. I have it mounted using a RAM Mount on the left side so it faces my eyes pretty much straight on. I donít have any trouble viewing it in direct sunlight or with sun glasses on.

Bevan
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  #10  
Old 06-23-2018, 05:43 PM
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az_gila az_gila is offline
 
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Smile

Don't leave/use it on your or your spouses lap if it's in the sun.

It will overheat and simply switch itself off - usually just when you need it...
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