Asus Transformer Pad TF300

7/31/2012 4:50:57 PM

The new tablet is a good bargain and it’s very fast

Price: US$ 379

Ratings: 4/5

Description: TF300 is a bit thicker and heavier than Transformer Prime, and its standard IPS display is setback

TF300 is a bit thicker and heavier than Transformer Prime, and its standard IPS display is setback

With the latest 10-inch tablet, Transformer Pad TF300 (379 USD, 16GB; 399 USD, 32GB), Asus avoids upgrading design and major hardware, instead of progressive improvements. TF300 is a cheaper version of Eee Pad Transformer Prime (499 USD, 4 stars). Inside, you can find the quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor that made the Prime the fastest Android device having come our labs; but absenting some Prime’s main features like the aluminum back and Super IPS+ display. However, the price is 100 USD lower to make up. TF300 is one of the fastest tablets at present, but it doesn’t take the place of new iPad (499 USD, 4.5 stars). Furthermore, stable performance, the latest Android OS, and specific docking keyboard make TF300 to an attractive choice.

Less change

The obvious difference between Transformer Pad TF300 and Transformer Prime is rough plastic back. At 10.4x7.1x0.38 inches and 1.39 pounds, TF300 is a bit thicker and heavier than Prime. A power/dock connector sits along the bottom edge; a micro USB port and microSD slot can be found on the left panel; a standard-size 3.5mm headphone jack on the right, and power button is on up.

The standard IPS display replaces for Super IPS+ display of Prime, and this is a significant difference. The 1280-by-800 resolution remains, but the TF300’s maximum screen brightness at 300 nits compared to 600 nits of Prime. TF300’s screen is enough bright but lightly dimmer than iPad 2’s screen (399 USD, 4.5 stars). The viewing angle is good, but the colors in TF300 are cooler than in Prime. However, it also has a high-quality display with its resolution is higher than iPad 2’s.

The TF300 uses an 8-megapixel camera in back side, with a bit larger aperture than Prime’s – f/2.2 instead of f/2.4. There is no LED flash on TF300, but the 1.2-megapixel camera in back side is similar on both models. The tablet connects with 802.11n Wi-Fi network and supports Bluetooth 3.0.

The TF300’s optional dock keyboard costs 149 USD including a 16.5Wh battery, a full-size USB port, and SD card slot. The comfortable keys, multi-touch trackpad and you have got specific function keys for the tablet. If you are considering the TF300 for productivity, you will want to pay up the extra for dock.

Fast speed and sharp image

Prime and TF300 are still the only available tablets with the latest high-end quad-core processor. Although the CPU speed clock is decreased from 1.3GHz to 1.2GHz in TF300, its quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 still shined in our tests. At the highest setting, TF300 is just few less than Prime but it still brings the impressive results compared to any Android tablets. During regular use, both of the tablets have the same feeling, excellent with games and power-source apps.

The TF300 comes with Google’s latest mobile OS Ice Cream Sandwich. The Android 4.0 is a big step forward, but there are the same problems: lack of optimized Android apps of tablets, as well as not have easy way to find them in Google Play.

The photos taken by TF300’s back-side camera look good, with little image noise and most of sharp detail. Some nicer textures still look little pale, but that is typical of tablet’s camera. The TF300 also makes the 1080p video, and while outdoor videos are smooth and sharp, indoor videos are grainy and choppy.

Still the high-end Android tablet

The Transformer Prime was a top tablets last year, and TF300 achieved that position, but that seems as a temporary replacement while we are waiting for Infinity Prime with its 1080p high-resolution display. At 379 USD for 16GB model, together with the fastest processor right now, the latest Android version, and an add-on dock keyboard, the Asus is certainly one of the best non-Apple tablets today, but we are waiting for an Android tablet that can surpass the iPad.


Asus Transformer Pad TF300



Come with Android 4.0 OS, quad-core Tegra 3 processor

A useful optional dock keyboard

Improved camera


Little dim camera

Android still lacks of applications that easy to find for tablet.

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