What stylus should I use with Notes Plus?
I got asked this question a lot; so I thought I would put up a page to answer it in detail.
First of all, it must be a capacitive stylus, not the plastic type you use for your Palm Pilot. This applies to all iPad apps and not just Notes Plus – simply because the iPad has a capacitive touchscreen.
Then, what capacitive stylus should you use?
Foam-tip – A big NO-NO
There are two reasons these foam-tip styli are not good. First, the foam material is not rigid enough for precise input. Second, the tip feels like it might fall off at any time. It didn’t fall off on me but I think if used for a while more, it would. The only stylus of this type that
I know of is the Pogo Sketch made by TenOne Design, but if you run into another foam-tip stylus maker, avoid it like the plague. The Pogo Sketch actually manages to have another big NO-NO: it’s too small to hold comfortably as a pen. All in one, it’s a terrible product.
Rubber-tip – very good and feels almost like a pen (except for the big tip)
The BoxWave is what I personally use every day. It really feels like a normal pen, very responsive. I like the Styra model, which has a real ball-point pen on the other end, just in case I need to write a check, for example.
You can buy styli like this on Amazon. I like buying stuff there because they offer the best prices so I won’t have to waste time wondering around stores. Amazon sells two Styra models: one with a pen and one without (cheaper).
The Griffin – similar to the BoxWave
The Targus – very good reviews
Many Notes Plus users show their content with the Targus rubber-tip stylus; I suppose it performs similarly to other rubber-tip styli. They usually buy it at Target but (you guessed right) Amazon sells it too: the regular version (see picture) and the with-pen version.
The AluPen – too big?
Notes Plus’s product videographer, Adam Weiss, uses it and he likes it very much. It’s just a little too big and too expensive for me. Probably good for those with big hands. Sells on Amazon, of course.
For other rubber-tip styli being sold on Amazon, just search for “rubber-tip capacitive stylus“.
Plastic-tip styli – maybe
The DAGI stylus – here is some innovative attempt. Many users told me that a common problem with current capacitive styli is that the tip is too big. Not only does it prevent precise positioning, it also hides the writing underneath. The DAGI stylus attempts to solve the latter problem with a see-through plastic tip (see picture). Some users reported that it makes some noise because of the plastic tip touching the iPad glass surface. With the DAGI stylus that Jeff Krueger (details below) sent me to try, I didn’t hear a lot of noise, probably because I’m used to writing gently.
My personal opinion: it feels different, it’s not very natural (like a pen) but it can be used comfortably after some getting used to. It’s worth a try.
Jeff Krueger, a Notes Plus user, has a business importing these styli from Taiwan and sell them for $14.99 each. If you mention Notes Plus, he will give you a 10% discount. Please visit his web site: http://www.dagi.com.tw/.
The Aponyo stylus - worth a try
The special thing about this stylus: instead of using the rubbery tip like most other styli, it has a patented conductive fabric tip which makes it unique – the writing is smooth across the screen. The tip is softer than the rubber tip, which some people might like. It slides across the iPad surface with little resistance. My opinion about the Aponyo is very simple: it works!
There are three models: the Aponyo Flip with a stylus tip at one end and an old-school ballpoint at the other. The Aponyo Click, with a tip like a click ballpoint. The last one is the Aponyo Mini, suitable for use with your iPhone/Android phone.
You can find out more information about this stylus here: http://kosella.com/products/.
There is nothing like pens right now but it’s getting there. For now, a rubber-tip stylus is the best. Please let us know about your own stylus experience and how you would rate it in terms of the categories below. We’ll add your stylus if it’s not already in the chart.
Comparison chart (Source: MacWorld)
|AluPen||$25||rubber, 8mm||available in colors||4||3.5||3.5||3||3.5||4||3.5|
|Griffin Stylus||$20||rubber, 8mm||Clip||3||2||3||4||2.5||3||3|
|Aponyo Click Stylus||$30||fabric, 6mm||Click nib, clip||2||3||2.5||3||3||3||3|
|Wacom Bamboo Stylus||$30||rubber, 6mm||Clip, available in colors||4.5||4.5||3.5||3||4||4.5||3.5|
|Pogo Sketch Pro (foam nib tested)||$25||rubber/foam, 6mm||Choice of rubber or foam nib||4||4||3.5||3.5||3.5||4||3|
|Pogo Sketch||$15||foam, 6mm||Clip||3||3.5||3||4||2.5||3.5||3|
|Pogo Stylus||$15||foam, 6mm||N/A||3||2||3||4.5||2||3||3|
|Kuel H12||$20||rubber, 6mm||Twist nib, clip||4||4||3||3||3.5||4||3|
|Kuel H10||$13||rubber, 6mm||Telescoping handle, cap with dongle||3.5||3.5||2.5||4||3.5||4||4|
|Architect Stylus||$25||rubber, 7mm||Capped stylus, lanyard hole||4||2.5||3.5||3.5||4||3.5||3|
|iFaraday Stylus||$10||fabric, 7mm||adjustable clip, colors||3||3.5||3.5||4||3||3||3|
|iFaraday Artist Firm Dome||$15||fabric, 8mm||adjustable clip, colors, hard or soft nib||2.5||3||3.5||2.5||3||3||3|
|iFaraday RXII||$26||fabric, 9mm||capped stylus||3.5||3||3||3||3||3.5||3|
RES (resistance: nib movement across the screen and when drawing or writing)
ERG (ergonomics: comfort, length, weight)
PRE (precision: tracing three triangles of varying size at 100% zoom with each stylus)
NAV (navigation: using the stylus in lieu of a finger for tapping, swiping, etc)
WRI (writing: both print and cursive)
LIN (linework: line drawings, sketches)
PAI (painting: coloring, big brushwork, illustrations)
ipadstylusblog.com (contains reviews of several styli)
Disclaimer: I have no association nor on a sale commission from any manufacturer, retailer, or Jeff Krueger.