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Asus Transformer Pad Infinity 700 review

Verdict

Asus gives its hybrid a stunning high-resolution screen and a turbo-charged processor, but it’s as expensive as they come

Review Date: 23 Jul 2012

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £499 (£599 inc VAT)

Buy it now for: £699
(see more store prices)

Overall Rating
5 stars out of 6

Features & Design
6 stars out of 6

Value for Money
4 stars out of 6

Performance
6 stars out of 6

PCPRO Recommended

Part tablet, part laptop, Asus’ split-personality Transformer devices deliver some welcome innovation in a sea of copycat tablets. They’ve never been cheap, but the latest Transformer Pad Infinity 700 - due for release on 31 August - ventures even further into premium territory by adding a glorious Full HD display and the latest Nvidia Tegra 3 processor to the mix.

Physically, the Infinity looks familiar. Brushed grey metal pools across the back, while a thick, glossy black bezel surrounds the display. Build quality is as solid as ever, with the metal chassis feeling stiff, sturdy and even reasonably light at 606g; the keyboard dock remains well built, the tablet slotting home with a cushioned click.

Asus Transformer Pad Infinity 700 - tablet/dock front

Switch on the Infinity and the new display leaps out immediately. With a 1,920 x 1,200 resolution across a 10.1in IPS panel, it effortlessly climbs to the top of the Android pile, making tablets with 1,280 x 800 displays look fuzzy by comparison. Text is pin-sharp and colours stunningly vibrant. It isn’t quite the match of the iPad’s 264ppi Retina display, but at 224ppi it isn’t far off.

In some ways the Infinity comes out on top, though. With the IPS panel at full brightness, we measured the Asus at 423cd/m2 with a contrast ratio of 940:1, only a smidgen better than the iPad. But with the Super IPS+ mode enabled, it rises to a searing maximum brightness of 650cd/m2. Although that drops the contrast to 823:1, the payoff is legibility: even under direct sunlight, the Asus delivers a punchy, detailed picture.

Asus Transformer Pad Infinity 700 - tablet front

The one weak point is backlight leakage – in the black bars above and below a widescreen video, we saw little pools of light straying in from the LEDs along the panel’s edges. It’s a minor disappointment on an otherwise exemplary display.

The screen is the headline upgrade, but there are other, more subtle changes. A 1.6GHz Tegra 3 T33 processor replaces the 1.4GHz T30 of the Transformer Prime, but the added graphical demands of the pixel-packed display mean you won’t notice the boost in everyday use. Nevertheless, this tablet shows Ice Cream Sandwich in its best light: the crisp front-end flicks back and forth with liquid smoothness, and jumping between applications is appreciably nippy.

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User comments

The Ultimate Travelling Companion

Forget anything else. This is the ultimage travelling companion. Why this isn't an A lister is beyond me. Had a shot of this on a plane when I was lucky enough to sit beside a tech-tester. It's a stunning piece of kit.

By CraigieDD on 24 Jul 2012

Specs?

Hi Sasha Muller. Not sure where you get your specs for the spec page, since you mention the correct CPU frequency in the review itself. But i guess the place i look at is http://eee.asus.com/en/eeepad/transformer-infinity
/specification/
What it mentions there, (i might be misunderstanding) is that there is a difference between the 3G model and the wifi one in terms of CPU...

By mobilegnet on 24 Jul 2012

@mobilegnet

Different for 3G is odd. I know that the 4G chipsets are incompatible with the nVidia Tegra 3, but I haven't seen a 3G model needing a different processor...

By big_D on 25 Jul 2012

@big_D

That is what the official website tech sheet says. Maybe the meant 4G. Actually i cross checked on gsmarena for specs and they do say the LTE one has the 1.5 dual core so i would thing they meant 3G. Does the 4g on this work in the UK? I think this one PC PRO review is only wifi model..

By mobilegnet on 25 Jul 2012

Still no 3G model !

£600 and still no 3G! Complete fail. ipad here we come.

By JohnSheridan on 27 Jul 2012

Asus have disappointed the market big time

Here we have a lovely piece of kit that Asus just doesn't want to sell - it's available for $499 from USA and 586 Euro's from Amazon Italy - both nicely under £500 at current exchange rates - when are PCPRo going to do some investigating into why ASUS doesn't bring in units comparable to the rest of the world ? I am desperate for exactly this tablet and it's way out of my budget - may as well by the cheap option an Apple Ipad - never thought I'd see the day....

By MARK5 on 30 Jul 2012

Consolidating Devices

I have a Samsung Pad & a Droid X phone on Verizon in the states. I also use a desktop and a HP notebook and need to replace everything. It is time for me to upgrade and I am thinking of consolidating to a single device & utilizing cloud computing more for storage. I really like the specs for the Asus Infinity 700 but Verizon (or any other carrier in the USA for that matter ) is not carrying it. I have two questions. Been thinking of getting the 700 and using it on WiFi AND on a Verizon enabled hotspot card (Verizon Jetpack™ 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot MiFi® 4620L) AND voice enabling the 700 with Skype or some other VOIP solution. I know this means I carry a card in my pocket and the pad in my hand....but sounds like it will work fine. I want to stay with Verizon and just want the most robust pad available and Verizon Wireless only supports the ZYBoard that would be any thing close to the 700 (DROID XYBOARD 10.1 by MOTOROLA 64GB).
Is this a good solution & will the 700 support Skype and/or other VOIP well enough to replace my Droix X Phone? Your thoughts?

By JoeFolsom on 30 Jul 2012

Ipad + Dock St + Keyboard = More than Transformer

How much extra would a docking station and keyboard cost to add to the Ipad is another way of looking at it. Maybe.

By davidk1962 on 3 Aug 2012

So how come Simply are carrying the 32GB model then?

Click the price at the top of the article it takes you to Simply who are stocking the 32GB model. The left hand of Asus doesn't appear to know what it's right hand is doing.
ps. This site is not displaying correctly for me in Firefox

By Deadtroopers on 4 Aug 2012

????

The review is for a 64GB model with a keyboard. According to the review this will be the only model available in the UK. This won't, apparently, be available in the UK until 31st August.

The "buy it now" price is for a 32GB model without a keyboard which is available now. Perhaps PcPro should explain what this is all about. Is it safe to buy this when it shouldn't be available in the UK and certainly not yet.

By AndrewX on 5 Aug 2012

32GB confusion

@Deadtrooperx, @AndrewX

There is no 32GB UK version, so it seems Simply Electronics are importing their stock from somewhere else.

As Simply aren't retailing official UK stock, we'll be removing the Buy it Now link. The official UK stockist at laucnh will be Amazon UK.

Thanks for bringing the issue to my attention.

Kind regards,

Sasha Muller
PC Pro

By SashaMuller on 6 Aug 2012

Buy it now

Might also be worth vetting the buy-it-now links. John Lewis is selling a pad for £400, but it's not the infinity, it's not even the prime.

Amazon is the only official supplier of the Infinity until October, and so far no other retailers appear to have stock.

By fs671 on 30 Sep 2012

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