Can You Use Procreate on an iPad Mini? | ZUGU Case

Can You Use Procreate on iPad Mini? A Comprehensive Guide

Updated: 19 January 2024

Can you use Procreate on iPad Mini? It’s a loaded question, but if you need a short answer: Yes. Using Procreate on your iPad Mini may not be the same experience as playing with the app on your iPad Pro, but it’s still a pretty versatile sketchbook. Let’s break that down further and talk about the upsides — and downsides — of using Procreate on your iPad Mini. 

Your first purchase for your iPad Mini might have been an iPad Mini 6th generation case or iPad Mini 5th generation case if that was your model. Your second purchase is likely to be a few handy apps. If you’re into drawing and animation, your first app store bill may just be $12.99 for Procreate.

But let’s backtrack here. Do you really want to buy an iPad Mini at all if you’re into drawing, sketching, or animation? You’ve got other options — do you really want to go with the runt of the litter, the smallest iPad that can’t even display a full-page drawing at its intended scale?

Why Use Procreate on iPad Mini?

Here are a few reasons you might choose the iPad Mini rather than an iPad Pro or Air model for running your Procreate app. 

Portability at Its Finest

  • Compact dimensions: The iPad Mini's smaller form factor positions it as the epitome of portability. Nestling comfortably in your jacket pocket, it effortlessly becomes an artistic companion that is always at your fingertips.
  • On-the-go creativity: Whether you're commuting, traveling, or simply on the move, the iPad Mini's size ensures that your creative sanctuary is never out of reach. Its sleek dimensions make it an ideal choice for artists craving spontaneity without compromising on functionality.

Affordability without Compromise

  • Budget-friendly option: While not claiming the title of the cheapest tablet, the iPad Mini strikes a harmonious balance between performance and price. Compared to its larger counterparts, opting for the Mini presents a cost-effective solution without compromising on the essential features that make Procreate shine.
  • Comparable specs: Despite its more economical price tag, the iPad Mini boasts specifications that stand shoulder to shoulder with its larger counterparts. This makes it an attractive choice for artists seeking a powerful yet pocket-friendly canvas for their creative endeavors.

Feather-Light Advantage

  • Effortless maneuverability: Weighing in as the lightest iPad model available, the iPad Mini introduces a new level of maneuverability to your artistic process. This is particularly advantageous for those who enjoy balancing their device with one hand while their creative vision comes to life with the other.
  • Enhanced comfort: The weight difference, though subtle, becomes a game-changer for artists engaged in prolonged drawing sessions. The iPad Mini's feather-light design ensures that your creative pursuits remain comfortable and strain-free, allowing you to focus solely on the artistry at hand.

In essence, the iPad Mini emerges not just as a smaller alternative but as a deliberate choice for artists seeking a harmonious blend of portability, affordability, and ergonomic design when harnessing the power of Procreate.

Downsides to Using Procreate on the iPad Mini

Procreate seamlessly integrates with the iPad Mini 6th generation, offering a responsive and enjoyable digital canvas. Furthermore, the beauty of Procreate extends beyond the latest models, as it's compatible with any iPad running iOS 14.4 or later. However, if you find yourself armed with an older iPad, the experience might be a bit more sluggish, akin to wading through digital molasses — less fun but still functional. Despite potential limitations, the essence remains clear: Procreate transforms your ideas into virtual masterpieces, regardless of your iPad's age.

A word of caution, though — Procreate's current iteration doesn't play nice with the first three generations of the iPad Mini. The iPad Mini 4, while compatible, comes with a caveat: the new Apple Pencil doesn't join the party, leaving you reliant on a third-party stylus to bring your creative visions to life.

Let's zoom in on the 5th and 6th generation iPad Mini models. Both harmonize beautifully with Procreate, providing a canvas for your imagination to unfold. However, choosing between them demands consideration. The 5th generation, while competent, bears a slightly diminished processing power compared to its successor. As touted by Apple, the A15 Bionic chip embedded in the 6th generation iPad Mini elevates graphics performance by a remarkable 80%, offering a visual feast for digital artists.

Yet, the crux of the matter isn't the processing power but rather the canvas space. The iPad Mini's charm lies in its portability, making it an artistic ally on the go — perfect for those whimsical doodles during train rides. However, the challenge arises when you attempt to craft a full-page comic. Maneuvering through scrolls, zooms, and scaling windows does allow you to fill your canvas, but the trade-off is sacrificing a holistic view. Zoom out too much, and you risk losing the intricate details that define your artwork.

Delving further, the brushes, settings, and options, while slightly downsized compared to the regular iPad, still command a significant portion of your Mini's screen. This juxtaposition calls for adaptability, particularly if you're accustomed to the tactile grace of drawing with your hand resting on paper or a larger iPad. While replicating this on the iPad Mini is feasible, it comes at the cost of diminishing your limited digital real estate. It might be time to forge new habits and explore the nuances of creating art on this smaller yet versatile canvas. 

Despite its spatial constraints, the iPad Mini beckons as a pocket-sized arena for creative exploration, demanding a fresh perspective to unleash your artistic potential.

Related Reading: Can you Connect a Controller to an iPad Mini?

Which iPad Mini is Best for Procreate?

So, you've embraced the idea of working with a more compact canvas and decided to dive into the world of Procreate on iPad Mini. The next logical question looms: which iteration should you invest in to amplify your artistic endeavors?

Let's cut to the chase — we're venturing out on a limb to suggest that if budget allows, go for the cream of the crop: the 6th generation iPad Mini. The technological strides made in the two and a half years since the 5th generation (circa 2019) are substantial, and opting for the latest model ensures you're equipped with the pinnacle of iPad Mini capabilities.

Memory Matters

The iPad Mini 6 introduces a significant leap in memory options. While the 5th generation offers 32 GB and 128 GB choices, the 6th generation ups the ante with 64 GB or a whopping 256 GB. If your artistic endeavors involve daily sketching marathons, the 256 GB option becomes a worthy investment, ensuring ample space for your burgeoning digital gallery.

Display Brilliance

The screen resolution of the iPad Mini 6 is a visual feast, boasting a stunning 2266 by 1488 pixels at 326 pixels per inch. Compare this to the 5th generation's respectable 2048 by 1536 pixels at 264 pixels per inch, and you'll grasp why the new model exudes sharpness and clarity. Both models feature a fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating, with users noting that the new Mini carries a slightly slicker feel, particularly for detailed sketching. If this poses a concern, consider complementing your setup with a matte paper-like screen cover for enhanced precision.

Powerful Innards

What you're truly paying for with the 6th generation is beneath the surface — a robust A15 Bionic chip with 64-bit architecture and a 6-core CPU. This processing powerhouse empowers you to seamlessly work with up to 26 layers in Procreate, a notable advantage over the 19 layers supported by the 5th generation. While 19 layers are nothing to scoff at, the extra processing muscle in the 6th generation opens up new possibilities for complex and layered digital artworks.

Remember, if memory becomes a constraint, the cloud is your ally, providing a virtual reservoir for your creative projects. The key is to ensure you're content with your tablet; it aligns with your budget, and, most importantly, it facilitates your artistic wizardry with Procreate. 

What Is The Best iPad Mini Case for Artists?

Safeguard your chosen device with a sturdy drop-safe case — a 5th generation case if that's your trusty model, or opt for the brand-new 6th generation case for the latest and greatest in iPad Mini technology.

ZUGU iPad Mini Cases: A Masterpiece in Protection

For iPad Mini aficionados seeking an unparalleled blend of durability and style, ZUGU stands out as a frontrunner. Our meticulously crafted cases are engineered to withstand the rigors of the creative journey, providing a fortress of protection for the 6th generation models.

ZUGU doesn't just stop at protection; our cases are a testament to thoughtful design catering specifically to artists. With precision-cut openings, access to ports, buttons, and the Apple Pencil is seamless. The cases also offer multiple viewing angles, transforming your iPad Mini into an ergonomic canvas for your creative endeavors.

So there you have it. While the iPad Mini may be the smallest in the iPad lineup, its capabilities, especially when paired with the right case, transcend its size, making it a compelling canvas for artists on the go.

Secure your iPad Mini, your faithful artistic companion, with the pinnacle of protection — choose a ZUGU iPad Mini case today.