Do you get a better Zwift exprience with a recent iPad (A12 or A14) vs A9?

Reason I’m asking is I’m thinking of upgrading my iPad 2017 (A9 chip) to a more recent one (iPad Air 4/A14 or iPad 2020/A12) and I’ve been wondering if the viewing experience would be improved, i.e. more details maybe (no quality setting available on iOS so don’t know what’s available) ? With my current A9 iPad everything is very fluid except when a pack rides in the dust and it becomes a tiny bit choppy.

So to sum it up is there any difference between A9 vs A12 or between A12 vs A14 ?

Thanks for any feedback !

EDIT - it seems iPads are going to be limited to “1080 Basic” regardless of the power of their chip so that probably takes care of my question :frowning:

Long story short: no.

Detail is exactly the same (Basic profile, the lowest of four) and frame rate is the usual 20-30fps. I believe resolution is dependent on the display in the device, but it’s probably limited to 1080p anyway.

Apple devices do run slightly bespoke profiles so there’s possibly some very minor differences, but nothing worthy of note.


Thanks, I suppose it’s a bit disappointing that Zwift isn’t leveraging the improved capacities of the latest A14 chips on iOS that are nearly 10x more powerful than the A8X chips, maybe later :wink: Do you know if there’s ever been any talk of that ?

Not that I’ve seen. Ultimately Zwift is a computer game - even though it’s miles behind modern games in terms of visuals, if you want high detail and performance from a computer game then a PC (or console) with dedicated graphics card is required. Tablets, phones and so on are the easy, low fuss option for casual users who are generally perfectly happy with relatively low detail and frame rate. You only have to see how popular Apple TV (1080p Basic at 30fps) is for proof of that. So there’s little or no incentive for them to improve Zwift on these devices, because there’s not really any demand for it I’m afraid.

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I upgraded from a 2015 iPad Air to a 2020 iPad Air last year - I’m not convinced there were any improvements in the graphics capabilities but the stability has been so much better with no crashes in large events

That’s due to the increase in system RAM between the generations, I believe. You went from 2GB to 4GB. :+1:

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@milbob - good to hear, can’t say I’ve ever had any crashes with my iPad 2017/A9, except for the odd glitch while loading but that’s probably more due to network issues.

Yes, I’d have to agree with this !

So the next question could be : what’s the cheapest “no fuss” way to get “1080 High” ?
It seems a laptop with a GTX 1050 card would work for that. It probably wouldn’t be that great to have a large keyboard between the screen and you though. A “360” controlled by ZC would be nicer, it seems HP makes some of these under the Spectre line.

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No point bothering with High profile, a 1050 will get Ultra anyway. Note that this refers to the detail only, and it’s automatically selected by the game. 1080p as selected in the game’s setting menu refers to the resolution only, and if you want 1080p (or 1440p) then something like a GTX 960 or 1050 Ti is plenty good enough to hit 60fps in most solo ride situations. The demands only go up if you want 4K resolution (needs a stronger graphics card - GTX 980/1060/1650 Super or above) or want to minimise frame rate tanking well below 60fps in group events (needs a very fast/modern CPU - 5GHz Intel or Ryzen 5000 series). I wouldn’t go with a laptop in any case, they’re really poor value for money compared to a desktop.

As you can probably gather I’m a fan of getting the highest detail and frame rate performance from Zwift, which currently requires a PC (though nowhere near as a powerful/expensive as most people believe). If I’m paying a monthly subscription for a piece of software then I want to get the best from it. Even the newest M1 Apple devices don’t get the highest detail in Zwift; in fact for some odd reason, at present they’re not even getting what they used to. And the frame rate still tanks in the same scenarios as a PC anyway.

However I totally understand and acknowledge that PCs aren’t for everyone, and there’s nothing wrong with using something self-contained, small and straightforward. Nor is everyone bothered about ‘good’ graphics anyway. Those devices are just a long way off the best Zwift can produce, that’s all.

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Where do you change the graphic profile?

You can’t. It’s automatically chosen by the game based on your hardware. There are a few minor hacks that can be done via the config file (on PC and Mac) but this isn’t the same, despite some believing it is.

so popular on apple tv, that they do nothing to improve the apple remote interface !