Adonit Jot Pro stylus for iPad review

The Adonit Jot Pro stylus for iPad is best in class when it comes to high precision, detailed writing and line work

The Adonit Jot Pro is not your regular iPad or iPhone stylus. Instead of a round, mushy finger-sized capacitive tip, it has a very thin, very hard tip like a mechanical pencil, with a large, round, transparent capacitive disk on the end. It's odd looking and odd feeling at first, especially compared to other pro-level capacitive styli on the market. But does it hold up?

More of a specialty stylus than a general purpose pen, the Adonit Jot Pro is best in class when it comes to certain, specific applications, namely fine, detailed line work, but falls behind the likes of SGP, Ten One Design, and Wacom in others for brush work or other staccato applications.

Adonit Jot Pro review

The Adonit Jot Pro looks the most like a traditional, fine tipped pen (except for the disk at the end, of course). It's got a nicely weighted aluminum and steel body that comes in metallic black, silver, red, or blue, and a slightly curved, black rubber grip that's comfortable even for extended use. The body is magnetized so it can stick to the new iPad and iPad 2, and it has a cap to protect the metal tip and plastic disk from damage when it's being carried around.

It's the tip that makes the Adonit Jot Pro really stand out, and it's a decidedly mixed blessing. For precise, detail oriented drawing, drafting, and other forms of line work, it's absolutely best in class. It feels like the right tool for the right job because it feels like the tools traditional artist have been using for those jobs all along. The plastic disk makes it easier to see through than the fatter, rounded nib found in other popular styli, so you can be more accurate with placement. Because it's not mushy like a silicone tip, it doesn't require a lot of pressure to register. Those are all huge advantages for the Jot Pro.

But all of that comes with a price. First, the disk is a slightly "scratchier" feel too it when you drag it along the iPad or iPhone display. That takes some getting used to. It's simply not as smooth as a silicone tipped stylus. You might even hate it at first, but chances are it will grow on you if you give it time. Second, it's noisy. While soft tips cushion the sound, the Adonit Jot Pro's hard tip does not. So if you're doing a lot of small actions, you're literally tapping out a drum beat. If you're in a quiet area, that really stands out. Third, the same precision that works so well for line drawing doesn't feel as good for brushwork in painting apps.

The same holds true for note-taking. For those who want incredibly precise script, the Adonit Jot Pro works really, really well. For sticklers who want the most detailed strokes imaginable, the Jot Pro will be perfect. For those who want to just scrawl down a few block letters, you're getting more tapping noise than smooth movement.

Interestingly, Adonit had released an SDK (Software Developer Kit) so app developers can make their apps work better with the Jot Pro. For example, the excellent drawing app, Procreate, uses the Adonit SDK. That means, theoretically, Procreate will work better with the Jot than another app, like Paper would. We found the Jot to be excellent for line work in both Procreate and Paper, however, so the Jot-optimized apps should be looked at as more of a bonus -- a good thing working even better.

The good

  • Unique tip design is excellent for detailed line work or writing
  • Transparent disk allows for exceptional accuracy

The bad

  • Tapping sound is noticeable in quiet areas
  • Not as good for brush work

The bottom line

The Adonit Jot Pro is the best stylus you can get for illustration and precision lines. If you want to produce highly detailed, draft-quality work, the Jot Pro is for you. If you want to game, take lots of short notes, or paint, it's not going to be a great choice for you. That's the price of being unique and excelling at one thing rather than trying to be good enough at everything. If you want a more general purpose stylus, look at the Kuel H12 or Pogo Pro. If you want precision penmanship, get the Jot Pro.

$27.95 - Buy now

Georgia

Senior Editor at iMore and a practicing therapist specializing in stress and anxiety. She speaks everywhere from conferences to corporations, hosts the ZEN & TECH podcast, and should be followed on Twitter @Georgia_Prime.

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There are 14 comments. Add yours.

Luis says:

I bought it, and i love it! The only problem is the taping sound if you choose to use it in a very quiet place; I'm not much of the attention seeker. I give 5 stars out of 5, it's made with high quality materials and so precise that you won't like any other stylus then. It was a Kickstarter project. I have it in red, and love it i can't say anything else about it. Well yes I can, i also love how that protective cap used to protect the tip also works as an extender of the stylus length while using it, which gives it bonus stability.

Carlton says:

I've had my Jot stylus for several months and I still love it. 5 Stars. It's precise and allows for seeing the actual point of contact. I'm a fine digital artist and I use this for all my detail work. Soon I heard the pressure sensitive model will be coming out.
Replacement tips can also be purchased.

Quintus says:

When are the Bluetooth 4.0 styli going to be ready? I'm waiting until then to buy one as I've tried many styli and none of them were able to replace my pen and note pad. Granted I have not tried this one.

Steve says:

BE AWARE! I have a jot and it SCRATCHED my screen. There is now permanent etching on my iPad screen. Adonit likes to sweep this fact under the rug, but the truth is it did and I was not alone either, several people have complained about the same thing. Adonit always blames the customer for the scratching.
Now, to be fair, it only happens to a small percentage of Jots, but when you're talking about a $500-$800 iPad being damaged, it's something to consider.

Carlton says:

I agree that I have gotten a few scratches with this device, but that's the role of the screen protector. I wouldn't be so harsh on the Jot design though. There are so many minuscule particles in your environment that it is impossible to avoid this phenomenon.
Put on a screen protector regardless of design.
Keep your screen wiped clean.
Keep your stylus clean.
Be mindful.

Carioca32 says:

Why was Dagi not mentioned, since they have the exact same design on the P504 and the P602?

Mrjr says:

Are we going to see a review of the Pogo Sketch Pro? Did I miss it? I think it's the next stylus I buy.
Also: I've said it before, you need to cover replacement tips in these reviews. Please.

Eduardo Kim says:

I got the Pogo Sketch Pro and it's only good for drawing and sketching, but if u want or need to handwriting u better off with Jot Pro than any other capacitive device.
The factory tip that came with my Pogo was too soft and hard to use since the softness affected the tip continuous flow. I had to buy a harder replacement tip to achieve my needs and expectations.
The Jot Pro just comes and it's already to use with no other type of tip /disc hardness/softness kind but it also belongs to a more handwriting or detail drawing market.
Hope my review helps. Cheers.

teepeeayy says:

Well, I asked for it, and got it! Thanks for the review. I write...a lot. I think I'm gonna give this a try.

teepeeayy says:

I should have asked: Was this review done on an iPad with or without a protective cover? Did you notice scratches?

Red the Dog says:

I have this and it sucks next to a wacom pen. You basically have a small plate stuck to the end of a pen. I bought a Lenovo tablet laptop in 2007 that had a better set up than this. I wouldn't recommend it, but having said that its better than the squishy round pointers.

Beverly says:

I purchased one during the kickstarter. At that time, Adonit said the disc was very unlikely to break...and if it did, they would take care of it. I want to say upfront that my jot has been used less than 10 times, and most likely it has only been used 2-3 times. Guess what, the disc broke when a customer was signing their name. Contacted Adonit and they said the disc "had run its course" and it was time to purchase more. When I purchased the jot, Adonit claimed the disc couldn't be broken, and now...it's time to replace it. I assure you, had I known this would happen and then they wouldn't stand behind their product, I would never have purchased it. Take my advice, don't buy one. This company can't make up their mind about the durability of the product, and they sure don't stand behind it.