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brand new user of a used iPad1. need some basic help about syncing, etc...


iPF Noob
Mar 16, 2012
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portland, oregon
hi. i just bought a used ipad original on ebay and have spent a lot of today setting it up. that was easy enough but now i need some help.

i thought that i could maybe get rid of my crappy lenovo laptop, but it looks like it may be my key to getting music, photos, and videos onto the ipad. no?

for example how would i get a movie off of my external hard drive, or photos from my camera, onto the pad? i'm guessing i'll have to download itunes to my pc, add the data, then sync to the ipad from there? (obviously, i am brand new).

also, are the original ipads famous for be slow on the wi-fi connection?

any advice would be great. thanks.


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iPF Noob
Mar 27, 2012
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The original iPads can be a bit slow using wi-fi, though I think some of the problems are due to the fairly slow processor. They can be slower still with 3G. Having said that you should check out your router and ISP. They're not really too slow, and if you're getting poor performance then something may need to be tweaked. Maybe try running a speed test (e.g speedtest.net) to check on broadband speed - there is an app for Speedtest. Just tried that on mine - ping 214ms, download over 4 Mbps, upload 640kbps.

You should get faster downloads from your computers using the USB cable. Not sure about wireless downloads from your LAN and I don't know if there are any tools to check speed.

For photos there are adapters which will take camera memory cards. That could avoid the need to load into iTunes then transfer. Not sure if the card adapters can also be used for music or movies. Could be worth checking those out. Here in the UK the adapters are around £25-30, I'm guessing change the £ to $ for your price.


As the previous poster stated, the original iPad one is a little slower over wifi, but nonetheless is still a most desirable and useful device. TBH I thought the wifi speeds were okay, it was only when I bought the iPad 3 that I noticed the wifi was a little quicker when browsing. Our 1st iPad 64/3g is now being used mainly by my wife who thinks it's great. Though there are other ways to put stuff on your iPad, iTunes is designed specifically for that task so why not use it, it's not that bad once you get used to it, and it will keep your iPad upto date too. It does mean of course hanging onto your laptop a little longer.

Personally, although you can sync wirelessly, you will find it much faster to use the usb cable, I still use a cable with my new iPad3, doing so, also means I can remove a couple of progs/services from running on my PC which are needed to use wireless sync, and are not needed/required if one uses the cable.

It really is quite easy to transfer all your selected music and films onto the iPad, though films will need to be ripped to MP4 format using something like WinX or Aiseesofts DVD to iPad ripper, the average film size will use around 1gb for a 2hr film depending on the quality settings used. There are lots of converters that will do the job, with many being free, I use the 2 programs I mentioned, and were quite cheap anyway... I think they have free versions too but may have limitiations.

iTunes really is an integral part of using almost any Apple device, so like me it's much easier to bite the bullet and install it, AIS once you get used to it, it's actually quite decent to use, and afterwards is just a case of dragging your files and dropping them into iTunes or importing them.
So, yes, using a iPad without the benefit of either a Laptop or PC possibly does slow app installs and updates down a little, and of course you lose the benefit of using iTunes, but there are many people who just download apps, music and updates, and anything else direct to their iPads, and have no computer at all, other than a wireless router, but if you want to install your own films and music etc. then TBH you'll find it much easier using iTunes.

Don't be thinking the iPad1 is obsolete Rob.... far from it, I still think an iPad 1 is a great device, and for most things you won't notice too much difference in use from the iPad2 and iPad 3, sure it's a touch slower across wifi, but it's still very respectable, and it has the same fantastic screen as the iPad 2, and for what it's worth I personally think the iPad 1 was well designed, I liked the iPad 1's squarer edge, so that the connectors plug in better, and in use, it doesn't feel that much thicker or heavier than other iPads.

If it hasn't been done, updating it to the latest ios 5.1 will give it some of the benefits that later iPads have except for taking photo's etc. as it obviously does not have a camera, it does however have a built-in microphone. I still have about 35 films installed on my iPad1, plus a load of favourite games that my wife loves to play, she uses it for everything. I did install the Atomic Web Browser from the app store, which is free for the lite version but the full version is only 69pence, it's a touch faster than Safari, has many more options, and importantly it has 'DropBox' built-in.. so is great for quickly transfering stuff to your PC etc.

I'm sure Rob..your iPad will serve you well for many years yet... enjoy!.
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