DisplayMate report: iPad Pro’s “top tier professional display” edged out by Surface Pro 4 in color accuracy

iPad mini 4 screen is near “textbook perfect” according to report.

ipad pro stock
Credit: Apple

Apple touts the iPad Pro as a productivity tool, so it’s important that the tablet has a high-performing display. And for the most part, that’s true, according to a report published by Raymond M. Soneira, President of DisplayMate.

The DisplayMate report includes a wide variety of tests, including viewing angles, color gamut, contrast, and ambient light performance. The iPad Pro earned a “Very Good to Excellent” rating in all of DisplayMate’s tests. The DisplayMate report goes on to say that overall, “the iPad Pro delivers a Top Tier professional display.”

However, DisplayMate points out that in its Absolute Color Accuracy tests, the iPad Pro “barely qualified for a Very Good Green rating” but it performed better than the iPad Air 2. The two tablets that DisplayMate says sports the best color accuracy: The iPad Mini 4 and the Microsoft Surface Pro 4.

DisplayMate also found that the iPad Pro has issues with calibration, but that the iPad Pro is still better than most competing tablets.

displaymate color accuracy ipad pro DisplayMate

According to DisplayMate, the iPad Pro (top) has an average color error of 2.6 JNCD and a maximum color error of 6.6 JNCD. The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (below) has an average color error of 1.9 JNCD.

displaymate color accuracy surface pro 4 DisplayMate

The iPad Pro performed significantly better than the Surface Pro 4 in Screen Reflectance. In the other tests, the iPad Pro and Surface Pro both earned Very Good to Excellent ratings.

Overall, the iPad Pro received a grade of A- by DisplayMate. By comparison, the iPad Air 2 grade is A-, the iPad Mini 4’s grade is A, and the Surface Pro 4’s grade is A.

DisplayMate calls the iPad mini 4 “a textbook perfect LCD display.” It posted record scores of all iPads except in the Contrast Ratio test, where the iPad mini 4 placed second. The iPad mini 4 could’ve performed even better if, according to DisplayMate, Apple “hadn’t intentionally made the display’s White Point so bluish.”

DisplayMate Technologies is a company that specializes in display calibration, optimization, testing, and evaluation. The full report on the iPad Pro and iPad mini 4 display testing is available online.

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