Asus Transformer Pad TF701T review

13 Dec 2013

Fast and with great battery life, but a dimly lit screen lets the TF701T down

Price when reviewed: 
434inc VAT
Buy it now for 
4

The Asus Transformer Pad TF701T is the latest in a long line of tablet/laptop hybrids, but the design philosophy has barely changed since the series' progenitor – the Eee Pad Transformer TF101 –appeared back in 2011.

You still get a standalone tablet with a detachable keyboard dock boasting a second battery and extra ports. As every year goes by, however, the refinements build, and the TF701T is no different, adding a higher-resolution screen and more power.

The one beef we had with the Asus Transformer Pad Infinity 700 last year was that of performance; although games and apps ran swiftly, it often felt a little sluggish when carrying out basic operations – browsing the web, for instance, and launching apps. This new Transformer resolves that in one stroke. Just like the Kobo Arc 10HD, it employs Nvidia's quad-core Tegra 4 processor, but clocked slightly faster at 1.9GHz, and it's much faster than the Infinity's 1.6GHz Tegra 3 T33.

Asus Transformer Pad TF701T

In benchmarks, the TF701T achieved a barnstorming score of 615ms in the SunSpider JavaScript test, 12fps in the GFXBench 2.7 T-Rex HD test and 3,964 in Geekbench 2. It's much faster than last year's model, and powerful enough to keep demanding games such as Asphalt 8: Airborne and Despicable Me: Minion Rush running as smooth as silk. Critically, though, it feels much more responsive when carrying out basic tasks, with no irritating stutter or lag.

As with its predecessor, the TF701T's Tegra 4 processor possesses a fifth low-power “companion core”, which means that although power is hugely boosted, battery life hasn't suffered. Attached to the dock with its extra battery, it lasted a huge 16hrs 17mins in our looping video test.

Even disconnected from the dock, the tablet managed an excellent score of 12hrs 33mins, a fraction behind the iPad Air's score of 12hrs 55mins. It takes a good four hours to fully charge the tablet and dock simultaneously, but this is a common problem with large or dual batteries.

Detail

Price ex VAT £362
Price inc VAT £434
Warranty 1 yr return to base
Overall rating 4
Performance 5
Features & Design 4
Value for Money 3

Physical

Dimensions 263 x 7 x 180mm (WDH)
Weight 585.000kg

Display

Primary keyboard Physical
Resolution screen horizontal 2,560
Resolution screen vertical 1,600
Display type IPS touchscreen

Core specifications

Integrated memory 32.0GB

Camera

Camera megapixel rating 5.0mp
Front-facing camera? yes

Other

WiFi standard 80.11abgn
Integrated GPS yes
Upstream USB ports 1
HDMI output? yes

Software

Mobile operating system Android 4.2

Price comparison powered by Reevoo

£329
£329
£330
£330