Twelve South Compass Pro

I a really great stand, and well made once again.

I have somewhat of a tortured relationship with the Compass lineup of stands from Twelve South. The first version was simply fantastic, but the follow up felt like a company trying to cut corners to increase profit margins. Because of that I went out and bought a few older original Compass stands to have on hand.

The issue with those older stands is that they are smaller, and generally are finicky to use with the 12.9” iPad Pros. A wrong tap or bump would send your expensive device careening off the stand. Still, I used those stands every week for writing at the dining table.

Then this work from home stuff came along and my need for a solid iPad stand became more urgent. After reviewing all the non ‘Viozon’ options (the Viozon is great, get one) I went ahead and bought the Compass Pro, hoping the stand went back to its original roots — especially for the price.

This is a really good option for a compact and secure stand. It won’t be the most ergonomic option, and likely will have limited utility once we get the Magic Keyboard — but if you want to use your own keyboard, well it’s pretty good. I don’t think it warrants a ton of cruft so here’s my distilled thoughts on this stand:

  • Secure: when my iPad is on the stand, it is on securely with no worries of it sliding off the font feet. Big plus.
  • Solid: my concerns with the second generation compass was that the hinge felt cheap. This hinge is a beast.
  • It is really heavy, and substantially bigger than the older Compass stands. Which is going to make it a decent tradeoff for carrying around. No longer is it a no brainer to just toss in a bag. Weighs too much, takes up too much room even folded.
  • The angle is modified on this stand to be pitch backwards more, and I find it to be much more comfortable for typing.
  • Surprisingly it works really well in the low angle for typing on the software keyboard. Which is something I love doing.

Overall I think this is a really good stand, priced correctly, and which is more versatile than most. It’s not the ergonomic stand of choice, but I’ve yet to see an ergonomic iPad stand that is both useable and something you could travel with. This stand you could travel with, you can use it in about any setup you wanted and it’s well made. It is exactly the type of stand you should look at if you prefer to use external keyboards with the iPad, or type on the software keyboard (which I think more people should do, it’s pretty solid). I think the Magic Keyboard will be a vastly better option, but only for those who can afford it, for most this is a great option when you don’t dedicate your iPad to a desk. I use mine daily.

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