Dell Venue 11 Pro review

20 Dec 2013

Dell's Venue 11 Pro is a tablet to be reckoned with – but the accessories don't come cheap

Price when reviewed: 
407(£407 inc VAT)
5

Dell's business-focused tablet, the Venue Pro 11, is deceptive. It isn't as lithe as Nokia's Lumia 2520, nor as stylish as Apple's iPad Air, yet behind its mild-mannered exterior lies one of the most promising tablets we've seen. Boasting Windows 8.1, a Full HD display, generous connectivity and even a removable battery, the Venue 11 Pro is a serious contender. See also: what's the best laptop you can buy in 2014?

It would be easy to overlook the Dell's talents, though. The dowdy, 11mm-thick body is cast in a muted palette of black and grey, and it's only once you cradle the tablet in your hands that the build quality becomes evident. At 760g, it's no lightweight, but the plastic body feels reassuringly stout and well constructed.

Dell Venue 11 Pro

The Venue 11 Pro is unmatched for practicality. There's a mini-HDMI output; a 3.5mm headset jack; a full-sized USB 3 port; a volume rocker switch; and a Kensington lock slot.The rear panel pops off to allow access to the 32Wh battery, and in a welcome change from its predecessor, the Latitude 10, the Venue 11 Pro charges via micro-USB.

The centre of attention is the 10.8in, Full HD display. It's as good as any tablet display we've seen. The panel boosts right up to a maximum brightness of 508cd/m2 – more than enough for outdoor use – and the contrast ratio of 1,058:1 is excellent. What's more, Dell has calibrated the panel to provide an unusual level of colour accuracy. Every shade is deftly reproduced, and the panel covers almost the entire gamut of sRGB colour. With an average Delta E of 2.4, colour fidelity is bang on.

Dell Venue 11 Pro

Dell has equipped the most affordable Venue 11 Pro with an Intel Bay Trail Atom CPU. The quad-core 1.46GHz Atom Z3770 is aided by 2GB of DDR3 RAM and a 64GB eMMC (embedded multimedia card) drive, and this combination is surprisingly fleet of foot. Startup and application load times are swift, and the Samsung-made eMMC drive is much faster than others we've encountered. Sequential read and write speeds of 151MB/sec and 50MB/sec respectively in the AS SSD benchmark are respectable.

Details

Price ex VAT £339
Price inc VAT £407
Overall rating 5
Features & Design 5
Value for Money 5
Performance 4

Warranty

Warranty 1yr collect and return

Physical specifications

Dimensions 298 x 177 x 11mm (WDH)
Weight 760g
Travelling weight 1.4kg

Processor and memory

Processor Intel Atom Z3770
RAM capacity 2.00GB
Memory type DDR3

Screen and video

Screen size 10.8in
Resolution screen horizontal 1,920
Resolution screen vertical 1,080
Resolution 1920 x 1080
Graphics chipset Intel HD Graphics
HDMI outputs 1

Drives

Capacity 256GB
Replacement battery price inc VAT £0

Networking

802.11 draft-n support yes
Bluetooth support yes

Other Features

3.5mm audio jacks 1
SD card reader yes
Camera megapixel rating 8.0mp

Battery and performance tests

Battery life, light use 10hr 25min
Overall Real World Benchmark score 0.38
Responsiveness score 0.48
Media score 0.38
Multitasking score 0.28

Operating system and software

Operating system Windows 8.1 32-bit
OS family Windows 8