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iPad Stylus Pen Review: An Updated Comparison of the best stylus for the iPad

Just Mobile AluPen ($24.95)

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The AluPen tweaks the standard rubber tip by adding a bold, thick aluminum hexagonal design. It is over twice as thick as the Boxwave Styra, and resembles a Sharpie pen in that way. While this might initially seem curious, it actually works quite well since the tip already mimics a thick marker rather than a pen.

The AluPen also performs better than its rubber-tipped peers. My suspicion is that this is because of its thickness and weight, which leads to more deliberate strokes and enough pressure to register on the capacitive touch screen. The feel of the tip is smoother than the Boxwave, but it also loses some of its smooth glide over time. Another downside is that the AluPen lacks a clip, which makes it a little awkward when housed in a doctor’s white coat.

Pros:

  • Bold Aluminum Hexagonal Design
  • Thickness and Weight Make It Easier to Write

Cons:

  • Design Might Be Too Bold
  • No Pen Clip

Link:

Author:

David Ahn, MD (@AhnCall)

Staff Writer for iMedicalApps, and 2nd-year Endocrinology fellow at UC San Diego. His primary interests include Diabetes, Fitness/Metabolism, and wearable technology.

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17 Responses to iPad Stylus Pen Review: An Updated Comparison of the best stylus for the iPad

  1. Kat March 17, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

    These stylus reviews were well-researched and written. Nicely done!

  2. Rob March 20, 2012 at 11:53 am #

    Have people had any issues with the Jot Pro scratching their screen?

    • j May 24, 2012 at 11:52 am #

      Yes — check out the support forum titled “Who is going to pay for my iPad screen”? The problem is that it’s really easy to get debris stuck between your disc and the iPad screen, which means scratches are inevitable. DEFINITELY use a screen protector.

      HOWEVER, after comparing the Jot Pro and the Wacom, I would say Wacom hands out. The Jot Pro is slow to react, slow to use, loud (the plastic makes a sound), and it’s not responsive. I am actually trying to pawn it off to someone because I don’t want it to end up in a landfill, but I also don’t want to use it.

      • alinag August 1, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

        J,
        Many thanks for the nudge to the thread on Adonit’s support forum. It confirmed my fears about this product and it’s enough to put me off it.
        There is the risk of scratching the screen with any stylus, but it seems to me that the JotPro doubles this risk because of the size of plastic tip and the fact that it’s flat. Also, the metal disk inside the plastic tip just looks menacing.

        I’m currently using a MediaDevil MagicWand stylus and I’m tempted by the Wacom for its smaller tip and the mesh tip. The AmazonBasics Stylus gets good reviews on Amazon as well.

  3. Dominik April 5, 2012 at 10:45 pm #

    I’ve been using the Jot for many weeks now, no problems with scratching at all. You have to put it down at a good angle and it works like a charm!

  4. j May 24, 2012 at 11:56 am #

    In addition to my comment above, the fine tip and clear disc make absolutely no difference for how finely you can write. In fact, because it is so slow to respond (you have to press the disc pretty hard against the screen and also get the disc to lay flat against it), I can actually write smaller with the Wacom Bamboo.

  5. Imari June 26, 2012 at 6:27 am #

    Great review. I agree. The Jot is a great stylus. The Jot response time or skipping can be improved by using conductivity gel such as Gardner Bender OX-100B Ox-Gard Anti-Oxidant Compound. I purchased and used a Jot mini until my daughter decided to keep it for herself. I ordered myself another but I would be interested in a review about the ifaraday rx .

  6. maralyn June 26, 2012 at 9:37 am #

    Does anyone know of a stylus that works well for lefties? I find that my right handed colleague is doing fine with the Targus stylus I bought, but I am not. Help please.

    • Emily August 7, 2012 at 10:22 pm #

      I’m not a lefty, but I have both right-handed and left-handed people in my family, and we all really like the TruGlide stylus sold by lynktec.com. I haven’t heard any complaints from the lefties about difficulties holding or writing with it, so I would suggest trying one! As an added bonus, their styluses have microfiber tips, which seem to work a lot better than some of the other rubber-tipped styluses I’ve tried. It doesn’t stick to or scratch the screen, which I see a couple of the other posters on here have had problems with. So, the TruGlide would have to be my suggestion!

  7. HWeaver July 20, 2012 at 1:51 pm #

    Really useful article, thanks. I see that some readers are experimenting with homemade styli so feel encouraged to do this myself. As an artist with iPad 3 looking for a drawing stylus, I’m looking for precision and ease of use and really do want to see what I’m doing as I do it. These rubber tipped domed versions seem not to be the answer. The sock solution is intriguing but only on sale from the US – it’s so expensive to import even just one item to the UK from the US! But I see I can buy the conductive e-textile material Medtex180 in the UK so will try making my own stylus

  8. DrJo August 14, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    I was too cheap (and too prone to losing things) to buy the several styli I would need to carry around in my briefcase, purse, etc, so I looked up ways to make my own stylus(advice is profuse on the internet). In the epitome of irony, I used my old Palm Pilot stylus, which was metal, took off the plastic tip, screwed a fragment of cellulose sponge in the end and trimmed it to a fairly precise point, and presto! – a virtually free stylus. I have found it actually works better than the one rubber-tipped stylus I had been given, and I have four now scattered around my house and office. Definitely doesn’t look as cool, mind you, so if you’re all about the flashy gadgets, this is not the solution for you.

  9. John November 3, 2012 at 9:48 pm #

    What about the effect of your wrist, when it rests on the iPad? Does the iPad or its apps take care of it for you? Or do you have to write the whole time with your wrist elevated?

  10. Fengmin December 1, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

    why there is no such a stylus which combine the disc and rubber on each side^

  11. Linda January 8, 2013 at 3:58 pm #

    I bought the Wacomb because it was touted to be the best. Yet when I try to write with it, the script is very thick. Is there anything I can find that can write like a pen on the ipdad?

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