Adonit Note + Stylus REVIEW Affordable Stylus for Every Budget | Mac Sources

Adonit Note + Stylus


With the Adonit Note +, you can enjoy many of the features of the Apple Pencil but at a fraction of the cost.

Having spent countless hours putting pen to paper, I am slightly jealous of the modern student. The ability to combine an iPad Pro with the Apple Smart Keyboard into a Tablet-top provides a convenient way to compose reviews, to type emails, or to transcribe notes. Additionally, one can use a stylus to annotate, draw, or scribe, and add a whole new dimension of possibilities. Furthermore, the ability to search through the data has truly revolutionized note-taking. Despite the improvements, the major downside to the above setup has to be the cost. When you combine the price of the $179 Apple Smart Keyboard Folio with the $119 price tag of the Apple Pencil 2, you have spent nearly half the price of another iPad Pro. Thankfully, we have the option to utilize peripherals from companies like Adonit. Enjoy many of the features of the name brand options and at a fraction of the price.

The Adonit Note Plus arrived in a clean white 2 1/4 inches wide by 7 5/8 inches tall by 1 inches thick retail package. The central focal point was the 5 7/8 inches long by 3/8 inches wide black image of the Adonit Note Plus. Toward the right side of the cover panel, my left, you will find Made For iPad Pro (3rd Gen 11" & 12.9"/newer), iPad Air (3rd Gen/newer), iPad (6th & 7th Gen/newer), iPad mini (5th Gen/newer) icons. Along the top of the panel, the company included a 9/16 inches black square with white adonit title font and a triangular pyramid. Each side panel was mostly clear except for “ADONIT NOTE PLUS For new iPad/iPad Pro” inscribed along the center of the panel. The back panel provided three circular icons, with an undodecalingual description of the Palm Rejection, Pressure Sensitivity, and Programmable Shortcut Buttons. Lastly, along the bottom of the panel, I found that the device charged via USB, and charged via USB-C. The bottom panel provided a UPC barcode, several of the product manufacturing labels, the product serial number and showed that the product was Made in Taiwan.

I removed tape from the top panel, gripped the plastic hanging tab and slid the inner box out of the outer box. Within the inner box, I found a 3/8 inches thick box housing the instruction manual and a very short 7 3/4 inches long USB-A to USB-C cable. The front panel of the inner box listed the need to update to iOS 12.2 or above and that the user needed to disconnect previously connected digital pencils. Resting beneath the instruction manual/charging cable box, you can find the black 0.45-ounce Adonit Note Plus stylus resting within a white foam cutout. There were several differences between the Adonit Note Plus stylus and the Apple Pencil, beyond the simple/obvious black/white color variation The Adonit Note plus measured 1/2 inch shorter than the Apple Pencil 2.0, the stylus charged via USB-C input along the top and did not charge magnetically, unlike the Apple Pencil 2.0. Additionally, the ADONIT NOTE and the shape was round and lacked the flat surface of the Apple Pencil 2.0. The tip was markedly smaller for the Adonit Note Plus Stylus and there were two available buttons along the side panel of the Adonit stylus.

Turning back to the instruction manual, I was pleased to find instructions listed in the same eleven languages as the packaging (English, German, Russian, French, Spanish, Thai, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Japanese, Taiwanese, and Chinese). To turn on the Adonit Note Plus, press the distal button once and a blue LED will illuminate along the side of the stylus. To turn off the stylus, hold the distal button for 5 seconds and the LED will extinguish. When the battery gets low, or during charging, the LED will change color to red. Once the LED turned blue again, the stylus was ready for full use. I did not mind the charging method, which was similar to the Apple Pencil 1. The USB-C charging method was an amazing addition, but I did not like the short length of the included charging cable, nor that it was not USB-C to USB-C. Additionally, after using the Apple Pencil 2, I missed the magnetic charging feature. For Apps like Pages and Good Notes, the Adonit Note Plus worked just like a pencil/pen/stylus. The device proved to be comfortable in the hand, was easy to grip, but did not provide any additional perks.

If you navigate to the webpage, you can view a list of device compatible Apps. In addition to the native palm recognition/elimination, the black coloration, the round cool comfortable feel of the surface of the pen, and the narrow stylus tip, the Apps allowed for some additional uses. To use the programmable buttons and to enjoy all of the features of the stylus, you can use the listed drawing Apps (Concepts, ArtStudio, Zen Brush 2, Colored Pencil, Sketch Club, Interactive Sketchbook, VECTORNATOR X) and Note Taking Apps (NoteLedge, Noteshelf, PDF PEN, ZoomNotes and ZoomNotes lite). The website detailed the available features that each App supported and it became immediately obvious that the Note+ provided significantly more features than the Adonit Note pencil. Using the Concepts App, I compared the Apple 2 Pencil to the Adonit Note +. I liked that I was able to program the side buttons to undo/redo or to other recurring/desired functions. After several uses of many of the featured Apps, there were many pros/cons to the device. To use any of the features beyond a simple stylus, you must pair the device within the Apps. Coloring was fun, shading was fun, but for $49 I could purchase the first generation of the Adonit Note to act as a simple stylus. The real features of the device become evident when the App allowed you to control the accessory features.

As I am not an artist, I have not learned the subtleties of drawing/painting or of making full use of a stylus. Instead, I typically use a stylus to jot down notes during meetings or to add text/circle captions. I loved that the stylus added precision beyond the use of my finger. I was able to sign my name, I was able to print, to draw shapes, to change colors and did not have to grab several colored pens/pencils or crayons. I loved the palm rejection feature, but did not master the pressure sensitivity. The ability to add shadows with tilt support could prove to be quite handy but again the main aspect of this device was the programmable shortcut buttons. If you are looking for a wonderful stocking stuffer for that digital artist, the student, or for the office, look no further than the Adonit Note Plus.

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Originally published at on November 22, 2019.

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