ASUS ZenPad 10 Z300CL Review

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The era of tablets have been quiet lately despite the iPad being the key choice or rather a main “people’s choice” when it comes to usability. However, there’s glimpse of people who prefer the Android based tablets much more than any other OS’s such as iOS or even the Windows itself. The reason is very simple, cost. An Android tablet can also be pricey but in this case, ASUS has introduced a whole new 10-inch tablet which is capable as what other 10-inch flagships could do for a minimized budget. We have the ASUS ZenPad 10, a great looking tablet with decent specifications and great accessory that is definitely compulsory to get it bundled.

Despite having this tablet for more than two weeks, we have gone through a great amount of usage time and quite surprisingly this is definitely one worth to buy tablet of the year 2015. We don’t simply judge based on the popularity of a specific gadget, hence we actually use it like our own device and involve it in our daily lifestyle. During a period of two weeks, we have really made use of the ASUS ZenPad 10 and our review is your guide on whether to buy or not to buy the all new ASUS ZenPad 10.

Display

Sized at 10-inch, the display is pretty solid. It’s featured with an IPS display with a resolution of 800 x 1280. This results in a pixel density of only 149 ppi. Well, at first before trying out this tablet, we did thought the display will be pathetic. However, we totally got it wrong. We still had a great experience watching movies as the display looks vivid, thanks to ASUS’s TruVivid technology. On top of that, a basic protection layer – Corning Gorilla Glass is present on the ZenPad 10.

Design

For a tablet that does not cost a hefty price tag, the ASUS ZenPad 10 is nicely designed and indeed looks pretty attractive to us. We tend to love ASUS’s designs as its unique and totally different from their competitors. The ZenPad 10 has metal bezels on the top while rest of it is made of plastic. The speaker is front-facing while the volume rockers are placed on the left side of the  tablet accompanied by the USB port and 3.5mm jack.The power button is placed on the top left side of the tablet. The magnetic dock which is placed on the bottom-middle of the tablet enables you to connect the unique 2 in 1 audio + keyboard accessory which you have to purchase separately for the ASUS ZenPad 10. SIM and Micro SD card slot is placed on the bottom as well hidden beneath a flap. On the back of the ZenPad 10, the back cover is identical to rest of the ZenPad series but this time it is non-removable. We love the way it feels on hand with its textured feel that adds the premium value towards the outlook of the 10-incher.

Internals

Under the hood is an Intel Quad core chipset Intel Atom Z3560, a 64bit processor which feels much snappier than the one featured on the ZenPad 7 that runs on C3230. Accompanied by 2GB of RAM, the processing power is pretty smooth and lags are pretty minimum. We were pretty surprised with its speed and managed to play Clash of Clans pretty smoothly without even a single lag. We are pretty sure it can’t handle massive and heavy graphics games, however for basic gaming it is still sufficient. In terms of of sending mails, surfing the net and watching movie, the ZenPad 10 works like a charm. Internal storage comes at 32GB and is sufficient for average usage however if you’re a movie-holic, you can expand the storage capacity up to 64GB via the micro SD slot which is present on the ASUS ZenPad 10.

Camera

We shouldn’t really talk about camera in the first place as tablets are not really meant to take great photos ( well most of them 😛 ) . However, we want to cover this as well based on our demand as well. The ZenPad 10 comes with 5MP main camera and 2MP front facing camera. Images taken are acceptable and able to capture necessary notes and reminders clearly. It does what it supposed to do on a tablet which is to capture and save for reference.

Dual Front Speakers

That’s right! We have two front facing speakers which are pretty loud and clear. We tend to love phones with front facing speakers and obviously we love to see it on tablets. Having a dual speaker on the front, the ZenPad 10 is unique and we love the experience of watching movie or even playing games with it. With DTS-HD premium sound, the audio output remains clear and crisp despite how loud it gets. With this, we approve the ASUS ZenPad 10 as one of the best movie companion you can ever have. 🙂

Cellular Data

Can we insert a SIM card on the ASUS ZenPad 10? Yes, definitely. It is a 4G- LTE enabled tablet which allows you to use cellular data. You can’t make calls as it doesn’t support phone-call capability. However, you can still send SMS directly from your ZenPad 10’s SIM card number to the recipient. Cellular data works fine without any issues and it doesn’t fluctuate at all. ASUS is known for their hardware quality and capability, so you can definitely rely on that.

Zen UI

ASUS’s Zen UI, which is a “skin” on top of Android 5.0 Lollipop is one of our favorite user interface of all time. It has plenty of useful features such as Audio Wizard, Quick Memo, Power Saver, Gallery and lots more which is much attractive and reliable compared to most of other Manufacturer’s default features. We love how it blends with the looks of ASUS ZenPad 10 and as we mentioned earlier, very minimal lags were noticed. Despite the not so famous processor, the ZenPad 10 still works flawlessly thanks to ASUS’s UI which is optimized pretty well for its users.

Battery Life

The ASUS ZenPad 10 comes with a non-removable battery with a capacity of 4890 mAh. We won’t claim the battery life is extremely great but it isn’t poor either. We managed to get 3 hours of Screen On Time with a pretty heavy usage of almost everything including heavy web browsing and social messaging with a little touch of Clash of Clans. We even managed to get around 4 hours of Screen on Time by watching YouTube only for the entire day.

Accessories

We would love to get our hands on the Keyboard which comes with speakers on it. This is definitely a must have accessories to use along side the ASUS ZenPad 10. There’s also some features made available for the Z Stylus which is another accessory. We don’t have much to say about these accessories as we have not tried it yet. However, we will certainly cover it as well if we managed to get it in the near future. Do stay tuned on this post for further updates!

Conclusion

This is easily the best tablet out there with a proper price tag. We can find other tablets out there but most of them are too pricey. There’s a reason why it is pricey, due to its high specifications and premium build quality. However, if you want a tablet which could do a great job for you to watch movies, listen to songs, edit documents and play games, this is definitely the best choice without having to spend a whole load of money. With the ASUS ZenPad 10, everything which is mentioned above is definitely do-able.

Pricing & Availability

The ASUS ZenPad 10 is priced at RM1199 inclusive of GST. It is already made available to purchase in any authorized dealers and retailers out there. There’s no news on the availability of the accessories yet and we will update this post accordingly once those are made available.

For more information on the ASUS ZenPad 10, please refer here or you can also refer on ASUS Malaysia’s Facebook page.

ASUS ZenPad 10 - At a Glance
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Sound
  • Battery
  • Performance
  • Value for money

Summary

Pros:-
- Dual front facing speakers are to die for!
- Great outlook and build quality
- Good pricing range

Cons:-
- Processor could have been better
- Accessories are great but availability is poor.

3.9