Continuation of my iPad Pro odyssey (and warning about Plinth)

It’s turning out to be a day to bitch and rant, but I feel compelled to warn those considering purchasing the Plinth for their iPads (Pro or otherwise). This is a continuation of sorts on my use of the iPad Pro 9.7" and hoping to use it as my ultimate, portable, primary computer to replace all computers.

I write this because some users seemed attracted to the Plinth for its portability and feature set. I know some members here have bought and even liked the Plinth, and I mean no disrespect as your mileage may very well vary.

I’ve been using this $25 portable, adjustable stand for about a week now, and I can say it’s one of the worst thought out and executed accessories for the iPad I’ve seen.

The first problem is the main latch that release both the two bottom portions that fan out like a gulf wing, and the main support to hold it. The problem is that it doesn’t work. You have to unlock and pull all three pieces (usually forcibly) for them to even flip out. What’s worse, the latch hooks onto this thin 1mm string of plastic that broke the first time I unlocked it. I crazy-glued it back, but the design requires that it be no fatter than about 1mm so it was tricky. But it broke again, and again. Considering this is a portable thing which needs to be opened and closed many times, I find it odd that the only main latch that makes the whole thing work hangs on such an easily breakable piece of thin plastic. You also have to be especially gentle to unlock because the latch relies on a small spring that will easily pop out.

Second, it feels pretty unsteady when holding my iPad and in vertical position, it will tip over. And mine is just the 9.7". Even in its lowest position in horizontal orientation, I’m hesitant to write on it, lest it breaks. The whole thing is constructed from extremely cheap plastic parts. I wish they could have used some better, denser plastic instead.

Third, it slides like crazy. Although there are two little rubber grips on the two parts that fan out to form the bottom support, it’s got to be the slipperiest, tiniest rubber feet I’ve seen. And it does nothing to stop the sliding. The main, back support has two rubber strip, but provide virtually no friction. I tried adding additional rubber feet to it, but the design is such there is no good place to put them without interfering with the fold-up mechanism or it just throws it out of balance.

So, considering the use of cheap plastic, terrible design with poor QA, and impractical real world usage makes it not worth anywhere near $25. What it promises you and what you get are completely different. Thank God I got it off Amazon, so return would be hassle free.

I shot them a few emails about the problems, but received no reply. Instead, I found myself relying on the makeshift stand feature of my Moko smart cover I also got off Amazon for about $6, which provides surprisingly good good support, enough to write on even. It’s also a surprisingly good and thin case and cover for those who don’t need something like the Smart Keyboard Cover but without the keyboard. What’s more, they even proactively sent me email asking if I’m happy with it, along with an FAQ of features, through which I found that it’s capable of being a stand as well.

I was hoping that the Plinth could replace another iPad stand from Anker I’d purchased for $11, which is made of heavy duty metal and is stable and solid as hell, but much heavier and a bit larger than the Plinth. It can be folded up and so it could be quite portable, if not for the curly, protruding bottom which holds the iPad.

S

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The mileage varies indeed. Mine opens easily, closes fine, and holds my iPad Air sturdy. Sorry you got a dud.

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I too was underwhelmed by the Plinth stand that I received last week and will be sending it back to Amazon.
I consider the stand to be over priced and cheaply made. It is not something that I would trust to hold my iPad Pro.

Though not as portable, for now, I will be staying with the rock solid Aibcon aluminum stands available on Amazon for $8.99 Prime.

Amazon.com: Aibocn Upgraded Multi-Angle Aluminum Stand for Tablets Smartphones and E-readers Compatible With Apple iPhone iPad Air iPod Samsung Galaxy / Tab HTC Google Nexus LG OnePlus and More, Silver: Cell Phones & Accessories

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I believe that’s the same stand, with a different brand name, as the Anker sosurim mentioned. I have one of the Anker branded versions. It’s stable and durable, but weighs 6.27oz/177.8g which is a bit much if you are trying to travel light.

Yes, the Anker/Aibcon style aluminum stands are heavier then the Plinth but they are much more durable then the Plinth and I trust them to hold my iPad Pro in a stable manner.

Now that I have made arrangements to return the Plinth stand I think that I am just going to hold out to see if WayTools expands their line of stands to include a model designed for tablet use. I know that WayTools has a passion for functional, durable and lightweight designs.

I will live with dragging around my 6.27oz/177.8g aluminum stand until I see what WayTools does.

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I bought one of these: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00LDOYLT8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Quite heavy, but rock solid and compact when folded.

Interesting to see different peoples reaction to the Plinth stand. I guess it is a trade-off of what you expect and exactly what your Use Case is.

I find that for on the move use the Plinth job does its job well. When folded it is feels well protected against breakage despite being very lightweight plastic, although others appear to have reservations about that. I would not want to subject it to heavy pressure though so where you expect to store it will be important. I wanted something that I could easily carry in a shirt pocket along with a TextBlade and for that it feels fine and the very light weight is important… I have no trouble with opening it and it ‘springing’ into position - so maybe the OP had a rogue unit? In terms of holding my iPad Pro then it feels rock-solid when in Landscape mode (which is my normal use case). In Portrait mode it does not feel as solid, although there is still no tendency to tip over. With my iPad Mini it feels rock solid in both orientations.

I also have the Anker stand and agree that is an excellent stand as well. It is however significantly heavier than the Plinth, and does not fit in my top pocket so is not as natural a companion to the TextBlade. If you want a more robust stand that you are going to sling into a backpack then it is a good candidate. It is also a good sand if it is going to permanently it on a desk.

I’ve got the same and it’s fine. I even use it raise my laptop screen highe for media viewing.

Bob,

You might try a PointMobl Tablet Stand. I bought a pair of them (grey and blue) on eBay for under $6 last year. They are very lite weight at 20.9g/.73oz, easily fit in a shirt pocket with plenty of room to spare, and hold my iPad Air (which is thicker than the iPad Pro), Nexus 7, iPad mini 3, cell phones, etc… when not using a case. With the iPad Air you don’t want to be tapping it excessively hard when using it in portrait, but otherwise it works well. It also only has a single display angle. I think that’s a fair trade-off given the size, cost, and weight.

An alternative to the Plinth would be The Ridge. It’s on the heavier side but seems sturdy enough.
Has anyone bought or heard any feedback about The Ridge?

Otherwise, there’s The Apex Revolution.

The Ridge looks nice. I could really use an elevated stand. But at $85, I think I’ll pass and get a neck massage instead :smile:

S

I have a Ridge, both the bigger and the smaller one (I backed them on Kickstarter). They are nice stands and well made but not something that I tend to carry around as they are little heavy and bulky for Everyday carry.

There can be a little wobble, but when set up right it makes for a nice experience and you can get a good angle and height with the ‘screen’ but need to ensure that you balance it carefully so that it doesn’t fall over when you start touching the iPad.

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I understand, one of the reason why I didn’t buy one or back them up when they were still a Kickstarter.
I typically use the iPad’s smart cover and it provides what I require (though, still on the expensive side).

Sosurim, have you thought about posting a review on Amazon? I’m still seeing an almost perfect 5-star rating. I wasn’t about to buy it - $25 for a plastic stand seems a bit much, esp. when I’m getting a rocketship of a keyboard for only 4X that. But still, inquiring minds need to know. :smile:

At the moment I have my eye on (a) nothing - first see how my off-brand cover works when I’m typing on a keyboard and not on glass, and (b) buy either the CrowleyJones SmartStand II or the AmazonBasics Adjustable Tablet stand. My cover doesn’t put the iPad at a very steep angle and I don’t think the WT nanostands have a big enough opening to accommodate an iPad 3 w/cover - again, something to find out, but I doubt it.

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Funny you ask. I got a reply from Plinth (or rather, John Bull, the owner), telling me in quite aggressively detailed message that either I was using it wrong or it needed some time to be broken in. At the end of the message, he asked if I can just try using it for one more week before I do something rash, meaning, I guess, returning it or writing bad reviews.

I’d really like to support small businesses, especially startups. But I found his explanation ridiculous. Nevertheless, I may not have the time to drop it off for return for another week anyways, so will probably tinker with it some more. Doubt it’ll change my mind though, and I’ll probably put up an Amazon review afterwards.

S

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I did end up picking up a Plinth. I can see where some of the problems you’re experiencing are definitely possible. Personally, I don’t have any frequent issues with it and am pretty happy.

It looks like the wings rotate on a central cylinder hinge, but that hing isn’t held in place. So some times it seems the hinge and one wing will turn and in effect lock the other wing closed. Bumping the open wing fixes it and it doesn’t happen to me too often that it’s a bother.

It is definitely slippery, I’m actually thinking of adding some feet to it to make it stickier, it will also occasionally open when I put it down, but I basically have to lob it a foot or two onto a hard surface. Overall, it looks like it’s a pretty good quality device, that unfortunately is working with some very narrow allowances in regard to the hardware, have the thing bent just a bit, or not quite shaped just right and it could be a disaster of a product.

Not sure if this would help given the thickness of the ipad pro but it does split into 2 pieces which might help with balance? Its mostly deisgned for phones so maybe the center of gravity woudl still not work?