HEX3 JaJa Stylus with Pressure Sensitivity When it Works

Review of: HEX3 JaJa Stylus
Stylus:
HEX3
Version:
JaJa Stylus
Price:
$89.99
HEX3 JaJa Stylus

Reviewed by:
Rating:
2
On 12/22/2012
Last modified:12/18/2012

Summary:

The HEX3 JaJa Stylus tries to solve the problem with styli for the iPad by adding pressure sensitivity. Unfortunately, it's hard to get the feature to work with the limited number of apps that support it.

The HEX3 JaJa Stylus promises 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity, which should let users produce better looking drawings and a more natural inking experience over traditional capacitive touch screen styli. And it’s a great idea…

…if it only worked.

The HEX3 JaJa Stylus comes in a gray silo, highlighted in orange accents with a marker-style body and cap. The cap fastens so hard its actually difficult to remove. The writing point uses a thin metal wire with a tip surrounded in a flat clear plastic disk that keeps the metal tip from scratching the iPad screen. It runs using a AAA battery that drops into the end opposite the writing tip.

HEX3 JaJa Stylus
  • HEX3 JaJa Stylus
  • Rating: 2
  • Stylus: HEX3
  • Version: JaJa Stylus
  • Price: $89.99
  • Reviewed by:
  • On 12/22/2012
  • Last modified:12/18/2012

Review Summary:

The HEX3 JaJa Stylus tries to solve the problem with styli for the iPad by adding pressure sensitivity. Unfortunately, it's hard to get the feature to work with the limited number of apps that support it.

Here’s the dream HEX3 offers users: A stylus with pressure sensitive abilities, much like one gets when working with a real writing, drawing or painting tool. The two buttons on the side help the user quickly change that pressure sensitivity setting to match the user’s preference. The developer API lets app makers build compatibility into their apps. The apps that promise compatibility include the following as of this writing:

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That’s a nice list of drawing, art and inking apps. Too bad two different JaJa Styli failed work very well. The first one HEX3 sent was a preproduction unit, so one could forgive its failure. The second was a production unit that an average consumer will get when they order one for $89.99. It worked only slightly better than the first one, which means not well at all.

The folks at HEX3 suggested testing it with Procreate. The first attempts resulted in no inking at all. Eventually, after following complicated steps to make it “work” due to a bug in the software, the stylus produced ink on the iPad, but there was no pressure sensitivity with the first JaJa and intermittent drawing with the second.

Tests with SketchBook Pro resulted in no inking at all with the first stylus. Using Noteshelf the second stylus worked intermittently as seen below.

jaja stylus and noteshelf

Tried to write with the HEX3 JaJa Stylus using Noteshelf and got horrible results

The above image shows a screenshot of us trying to use the JaJa with Noteshelf. The sentence should read: “I am trying to make the JaJa Stylus work.”

Finally, I realized something. The device works using sound. The JaJa Stylus emits a high frequency sound that the iPad should pick up and send to apps that support the device. I keep my iPad in a case and wondered if the muted the sound going into the situated around the camera on the front. The case might cover the mic.

After taking it off, the inking became slightly more consistent. But it still didn’t work reliably.

Their website says:

The stylus will work out of the box in Rapid mode with any app on any device. JaJa mode is being integrated with the worlds premium Art, Design and Healthcare Apps to give full pressure and button feedback.

Sorry. Neither units worked out of the box and barely worked after a bunch of attempts to connect.

It’s possible HEX3 sent a second flawed unit, but if a company sends out two flawed units when charging $89.99, then they don’t deserve your hard-earned cash.

Give the Pogo Connect a look as an option. It uses Bluetooth to connect to the iPad and offers pressure sensitivity. It also works with a larger number of apps and costs $10 less than the JaJa.

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Comments

  1. Greg says

    I agree with this review.. It’s a really bad product. Been using (or trying to) since Christmas on an iPad using Procreate and it’s response is shocking. When I updated the iOS and Procreate the pen suddenly improved greatly but lately has been acting up again big time. Someone actually suggested that taking out the tip and licking the metal pin would improve the response time… I could’nt believe it but they were serious. Next we’ll be licking our cars to get them started. (Oh…and the plastic clip has snapped off)

  2. Jon Atherton says

    I think you will find that the new Teflon tips will fix the problem you experienced, please contact me if you want me to send some out. We’re also supported by a few dozen Apps now. Thanks

    • Leeanna Thomas says

      I have just bought the Jaja stylus and it is terrible it will not connect to anything properly and I have calibrated it correctly. Please can you help.

    • Leeanna Thomas says

      I have contacted the support only to be told that the tips you supplied are caused the problem, when I purchased this nothing stated that the plastic tips would not work. My poor daughter is devastated this stylus she paid a fortune for does not work, absolutely furious. The customer support is ridiculous. They now want me to pay for Teflon tips that will cost me $40.94 with shipping to the UK. This is terrible I am going to take this matter further if it is not rectified in the next couple of days.

  3. Wotan says

    Still not supported on android. Sketchbook Pro, Sketchbook Ink… no go.

    Very disappointed I spent my money on this

  4. i_ says

    been testing this jaja for a few days now, the idea behind the jaja is great, but it does not work as it should, interferance from environment noise, alsmost no pressure response, also the design is flimsy, the cap does not realy fit well, the grip looks cheap, the buttons are hard to push, no teflon tip included, the pen is out of balance as all the weight is in the back, not worth 89$ in my opinion, why supported in sketchbook pro and not in ink ?
    ‘better check out the adonit jot touch 4

  5. Lauren says

    I totally agree with this review. I spent a lot of cash on a stylus that just doesn’t work. When I wrote to the co for a refund they said they don’t give them….wow, bad product and bad business practices too.

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