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My Christmas iPad: One buyer’s guide to value

20 December 2012 1,347 views 6 Comments

My ever reliable original Apple slate is getting passed on to my family, getting replaced by a Christmas iPad 3 cradled inside a Zaggfolio case…

Money is tight, but my home office and mobile workflows needed an upgrade, all the way ’round. That said, the ever reliable original Apple slate is getting passed on to my family, getting replaced by a Christmas iPad 3 cradled inside a Zaggfolio case — together, a lot of mobile computing power and flexibility for under $500.

Why not an iPad mini or iPad 4? The mini is too small for my hands and, as you may have guessed, an iPad with keyboard for five Benjamins was a prime consideration.

Additionally, my aging yet eminently reliable mid-2007 iMac’s RAM is finally getting maxed to 6GB. To date I’ve been running with just 3GB RAM, which was fine with Snow Leopard and Lion, but has become problematic in OS X Mountain Lion — think rampant pageouts.

• Apple Certified Refurbished iPad 3rd Generation w/ Wi-Fi, $379 (499)

• ZAGG ZAGGfolio for iPad 2/3 Carbon w/ Silver KB (FOLCARSLV101), $85 (99), Amazon, Prime

• Crucial 4GB Single DDR2 667MHz (PC2-5300) CL5 SODIMM 200-Pin Notebook Memory Module CT51264AC667, $69 (89), Amazon, Prime

• JVC Marshmallow In-Ear Headphones, Black, $10, Walmart

See also: It’s an iPad Christmas, Tablet Adoption Soars

Although I’ve purchased a bunch of “value” in-ear headphones, there’s finally a pair I can recommend — these JVC buds offer good fit, sensitively and decent bass. Not awesome, but hard to beat for $10.

iPad Christmas value

Similarly, I’ve tried lots of iPad cases and discovered that a good stiff case with soft edges, like Apple’s original neoprene model of which I’ve owned two. The Zaggfolio is the closest case + keyboard I’ve found that offers that ideal combination of stiff support and forgiving edges.

Working/typing when on the road, something I will be doing a lot more of, will be much, much better with the faster, more capable, crisper iPad 3 in the Zagg case.

Are you seeing value in my Christmas iPad 3 bundle or would you have done it all differently?

Related posts:
— Refurbished Jawbone JAMBOX, $149.95
— Holiday Mac Deals: Photoshop Elements 11, Premiere Elements, $69.99
— Holiday Mac Deals: 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, $1,559
— Refurbished Mac: Mac mini, $469; MacBook Air, $719
— Holiday iPad case deals, save up to 63%

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