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Do You Need an Apple Pencil for Procreate on Your iPad?

Iva Mikles
Do You Need an Apple Pencil for Procreate on Your iPad?

In this episode of Procreate FAQs, I am going to answer your question about whether you need Apple Pencil for Procreate.

Do You Have to Use an Apple Pencil with Procreate on iPad?

Yes, I think you have to use an Apple Pencil with Procreate on your iPad. I’ve been professionally using Procreate for the past 6 years, and I haven’t found a better stylus than Apple Pencil 1 I used with Procreate on my first iPad Pro 10.5″ and now Apple Pencil 2, which I am using with Procreate on my current iPad Pro 12.9″.

What is more, since Procreate version 5.3, Procreate doesn’t support third-party styluses and only works with styluses using Apple Pencil technology. This effectively excludes any cheaper iPad stylus, so be careful when getting a stylus for Procreate.

Since December 2022, there are only four stylus pens supported by Procreate. They are styluses using Apple Pencil technology:

In the story of Procreate, the Procreate actually gained traction among digital artists only once the Apple Pencil was introduced with the first iPad Pro in 2015.

This caused a revolution in digital art because Procreate has become the closest thing to replicating the feeling of drawing and painting with pencils, pens, and brushes on a digital screen. The only device which comes close is the Wacom MobileStudio Pro 13 and Wacom MobileStudio Pro 16. But they are way too expensive for most of the digital artists.

To be absolutely honest, technically, I don’t think anything stops you from drawing in Procreate with your finger. However, if you want to have fun making digital art, Apple Pencil is the best stylus for Procreate out there.

Apple Pencil is vital when it comes to using all the amazing Procreate brushes that come with Procreate or the custom-made Procreate brushes you can get from me and other amazing digital artists.

So which Apple Pencil or Logitech Crayon should you get? Find out below:

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Apple Pencil Compatibility with iPad Models

Below is my overview, and here is the comparison of Apple Pencil 2 and Apple Pencil 1 for different iPad models:

My Pick
Previous Pick
5.0
4.5
Apple Pencil 2 is for all the artists working with Procreate who want the best drawing experience on their iPads. It features automatic pairing, magnetic charging, a "tap" menu, and a "hover" function. Drawing with Apple Pencil 2 is so intuitive, that I often almost forget that I am drawing digitally.
Apple Pencil 1 is for all the artists drawing in Procreate who don't have an iPad compatible with Apple Pencil 2. It is "the" Apple Pencil that introduced drawing on iPad to so many artists. I used it with my previous iPad Pro and I loved drawing with it.
iPad Pro 12.9-inch (6th, 5th, 4th and 3rd generation)
iPad Pro 11-inch (4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st generation)
iPad Air (5th and 4th generation)
and iPad mini (6th generation)
iPad (6th, 7th, 8th, 9th (10.2″), 10th (10.9″) generation
iPad mini (5th generation), iPad Air (3rd generation)
iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st, 2nd generation)
iPad Pro 10.5-inch, iPad Pro 9.7-inch
Magnetic charging
Lightning connector charging
Pressure sensitivity
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
Tap menu
Hover
Pressure sensitivity
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
My Pick
5.0
Apple Pencil 2 is for all the artists working with Procreate who want the best drawing experience on their iPads. It features automatic pairing, magnetic charging, a "tap" menu, and a "hover" function. Drawing with Apple Pencil 2 is so intuitive, that I often almost forget that I am drawing digitally.
iPad Pro 12.9-inch (6th, 5th, 4th and 3rd generation)
iPad Pro 11-inch (4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st generation)
iPad Air (5th and 4th generation)
and iPad mini (6th generation)
Magnetic charging
Pressure sensitivity
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
Tap menu
Hover
Previous Pick
4.5
Apple Pencil 1 is for all the artists drawing in Procreate who don't have an iPad compatible with Apple Pencil 2. It is "the" Apple Pencil that introduced drawing on iPad to so many artists. I used it with my previous iPad Pro and I loved drawing with it.
iPad (6th, 7th, 8th, 9th (10.2″), 10th (10.9″) generation
iPad mini (5th generation), iPad Air (3rd generation)
iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st, 2nd generation)
iPad Pro 10.5-inch, iPad Pro 9.7-inch
Lightning connector charging
Pressure sensitivity
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing

Logitech Crayon Compatibility with iPad Models

I think Logitech is a relatively cheaper alternative to Apple Pencil (unless you are getting one at a discount).

I don’t recommend it because it’s missing the pressure sensitivity feature, which is vital for my drawing on Procreate. I once challenged myself to use Logitech Crayon in an art challenge involving using one Procreate brush that doesn’t require pressure sensitivity. It’s good to expand my horizons like this, but for regular use, it’s not my pick.

New Model
For older iPads
My rating:
3.5
My rating:
3.5
iPad Pro 12.9-Inch (6th, 5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Pro 11-Inch (4th, 3rd, 2nd & 1st Gen)
iPad Air (5th & 4th Gen)
iPad (10th Gen)
iPad Mini (6th Gen)
iPad Pro 12.9-Inch (5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Pro 11-Inch (3rd, 2nd & 1st Gen)
iPad (9th, 8th, 7th & 6th Gen)
iPad Air (5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Mini (6th & 5th Gen)
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
USB-C charging
❌ No Pressure sensitivity
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
Lightning charging
❌ No Pressure sensitivity
New Model
My rating:
3.5
iPad Pro 12.9-Inch (6th, 5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Pro 11-Inch (4th, 3rd, 2nd & 1st Gen)
iPad Air (5th & 4th Gen)
iPad (10th Gen)
iPad Mini (6th Gen)
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
USB-C charging
❌ No Pressure sensitivity
For older iPads
My rating:
3.5
iPad Pro 12.9-Inch (5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Pro 11-Inch (3rd, 2nd & 1st Gen)
iPad (9th, 8th, 7th & 6th Gen)
iPad Air (5th, 4th & 3rd Gen)
iPad Mini (6th & 5th Gen)
Tilt support
Palm rejection
Automatic pairing
Lightning charging
❌ No Pressure sensitivity

FAQs – Do I Need an Apple Pencil for Procreate?

Why won’t my stylus work on Procreate?

Your stylus won’t work on Procreate if you are using Procreate version 5.3+ and your stylus is not Apple Pencil 1, Apple Pencil 2, Logitech Crayon, and Logitech Crayon 2. Since December 2022 and Procreate version 5.3, third-party styluses are no longer supported by Procreate.

Can you use any stylus with Procreate?

No, you can’t use just any stylus with Procreate. The stylus needs to use Apple Pencil technology. There are only 4 options: Apple Pencil 1, Apple Pencil 2, Logitech Crayon, and Logitech Crayon 2.

Can you use Procreate on iPad without a pen?

Yes, technically, you can use Procreate on iPad without a pen. For example, with your finger. But to have the most fun with making digital art, get an Apple Pencil 2 or Apple Pencil 1.

Iva

Hi, I am Iva (rhymes with “viva”). I am a full-time self-taught artist behind Art Side of Life® and a Top Teacher on Skillshare. I have 15 years of experience in the creative field as a concept designer, illustrator, art director, and now freelance artist, content creator, and art instructor. My goal is to help you get your creative groove on with Procreate and make awesome art through practical classes, tutorials, Procreate brushes, and guides on art tools, supplies and resources. About me »

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