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Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime in pre-test: The first quad-core tablet is here!

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The Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime has to offer a special treat: It’s the first Android tablet with quad-core processor. In addition to transforming the mere 8.3 mm thick 10-inch flounder using a keyboard docks into a complete workaholic. But does that justify the one suggested retail price of 599 €?

For € 599 potential buyers have a choice between two different versions. For this price it is either the tablet alone, integrated with 64 GB of memory. Or you get the 32-gigabyte version, but it still came with the keyboard dock.

During the test of the Prime Transformer, unfortunately we are met with a number of problems, which suggests that our test unit is defective. Therefore, it is this article even without a pre-test grade. The assessment we will catch up as soon as look at a second, hopefully fully functional tablet is available.

Until then, we do not want to deprive our readers of our impressions and experiences with the Asus but Prime Transformer.

Design

The Prime Transformer is available in two color combinations like throughout: Amethyst with a combination of gray and purple and champagne gold with a combination of silver and gold. Us is the former version. During a purple tablet is on our wish list is not just for Christmas in the first place, we must admit that the colors go well together, and the device looks really chic and sexy.

The aluminum back is gratifying insensitive to fingerprints. Unfortunately, we can assert that reflective of the screen and not just the surrounding context.

The Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime is about two to three inches wider and longer than the iPad 2, but also slightly thinner than the Apple Tablet and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. While certifying the balance to the Prime Transformer a slightly higher weight than the competitors. But given the even weight distribution, in practice, we found little difference.

Links das iPad 2, in der Mitte das Prime und rechts das Galaxy Tab 10.1: Alle drei Tablets sind extrem dünn, doch das Prime hat die Nase um Haaresbreite vorne.
Left the iPad 2, in the middle of the right and Prime, the Galaxy Tab 10.1: All three tablets are extremely thin, but the Prime’s nose has a hair’s breadth ahead.

The Prime has apparently copied from the iPad 2, a few design tricks. The reverse side describes a gentle arc, and carefully cut the rounded corners not so bad in the palms as previous Transformer Tablets.

As for the connections, the Prime Transformer on the left side has a microSD card slot and a micro HDMI connector has to offer. Furthermore there is a rocker for adjusting volume and a tiny recess behind a hidden microphone. On the top of the housing sit a little on / off / lock switch and a second Mikrofönchen. Right there is a 3.5-millimeter jack for connecting headphones, on the underside of the tablet Asus brings in a proprietary 40-pin connector for transferring data and charging the tablets.

The frame around the display integrates a 1.2 megapixel camera. Almost directly opposite on the back is an 8-megapixel notches, right next to the captures high-resolution still images and video with 1920 x 1080 pixels.

Like the first transformer is also the new Prime combines with a keyboard dock that the tablet ‘transformed’ into a kind of Android notebook. With the old transformer is plugged together as designed, however, like something fiddly affair. Here the manufacturer has now done his homework – the Prime Transformer glides like butter in the slot for it anticipated the docks.

The dock itself offers a full QWERTY keyboard with various function keys cut on Android also a trackpad, which controls a mouse pointer across the screen. On the left is a 40-pin port is for transferring data and recharging the battery. Right on Prime Transformer Asus brings a full SD card reader under sowei a USB port.

In the assembled state, the tablet makes one feel a bit top heavy. If you are not careful, then the device tilts slightly to the rear when it is on your lap or desk. The new Prime Transformer is not the way to the old dock compatible, and the new dock will not work with the old Transformer tablet.

Hardware

The Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime is the first tablet, the Nvidia’s new quad-core processor Tegra brings third The fast chip are also 1 GB of memory. The internal memory amounts to either 32 or 64 gigabytes. Also on board: WLAN 802.11 b, g and n, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR, accelerometer and GPS.

In the mobile keyboard dock, there is another battery that – while there is the connection – the Prime supplied with its energy. The battery dock is therefore only to run out before the current memory of the tablet is under attack.

So sieht das Transformer Prime aus, wenn es in dem Keyboard-Dock steckt.
Such is the Transformer from prime if it is in the keyboard dock.

Via HDMI port connects to the tablet with either a high-resolution HDTV or a monitor. Then leave here, for example, Android games in full screen mode and play using Xbox 360 and PS3 gamepad as a controller. Besides the two console controllers and a number of other wireless gamepads are supported, which then connect via USB dongle with the tablet.

Software Features

On the Asus Eee Pad Transformer is factory-installed Prime Android Honeycomb in version 3.2.1. An upgrade to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is to take place according to the manufacturer but over the next year.

Buyers of the Asus myCloud are 8 GB of storage in the cloud. Asus’ WebStorage can be achieved not only by the tablet, but also on PCs and Macs. There is access to the entertainment platform @ Vibe.

In addition, there are a handful of other tools. MyNet allows you to stream media via DLNA over the network. With MyLibrary, Asus’ e-book reader, finally reads and buys new books directly from the tablet, and note the great Eee Pad Transformer becomes the Prime notebook. Apart from the keyboard by hand written notes can be typed here also draw graphs or capture photos and videos and more with comments. This could for example be quite useful in one way or another lecture.

Asus offers users the option of quad-core processor to operate in three modes: normal, balanced or energy efficient. In normal operation, the CPU runs at full power. In the other two modes, the motor of the tablet will vary greatly curbed in order to prolong battery life.

Asus also has a mode called the Tablet + Super IPS (In Plane Switching). He basically screwed up the display brightness and improved visibility in direct sunlight.

Performance

Although the IPS display of the Prime Transformer is so clear and sharp, very impressive. But what really impressed us, are the soft transitions – for example when wiping from one home screen to another. Also, when calling the app-Roll is presented to us a noticeably smoother insertion, as was the case with the previous dual-core tablet.

We had hoped that this performance gain would affect other apps, for example, Marvel Comics . Unfortunately was not the case. Reading comics is designed with the IOS-App on the iPad 2 still smoother. But it could also fine for the Apple tablet-optimized app be responsible.

Resolution and contrast of the IPS panels are impressive as in the old transformer or the Asus Slider also the Prime Transformer. And the new mode called Super IPS + increases the brightness to an impressive 570 candela per square meter, and thus the highest value we have so far measured for a tablet. The difference is especially noticeable when reading in direct sunlight. Fallen in terms of vibrant color reproduction, however, we are still the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and 8.9 better.

To test the graphics performance, we have Riptide GP installed on the tablet. The jet ski racing game on the high refresh rate and prime liquid, although it probably a bit below that of the iPad second A few specific optimizations from the developer Riptide has to thank the Android tablet better graphics effects – such as water splashes on the screen – to offer. Also responded well to physics and spectacular wild flings us around. All in all we enjoyed the game on the Prime Transformer much better.

With the 8-megapixel camera on the back, the Prime Transformer – at least on paper – to provide the best camera of all tablets. And actually, the photos of the Asus racers have yet details in image areas, where the Galaxy Tab 10.1 or the Sony Tablet S to see only mud. However, the colors are in direct comparison with other smartphones and tablet cameras somewhat blurred.

When the shutter lag, the Prime proposes also very good. For example, while the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 requires several seconds to focus and capture the photo, the Prime Transformer fires almost instantaneously. Thanks to the fairly high aperture ratio of F2, 4 also more light penetrates through the mini-lens to the image sensor, as with other cameras in the tablet case. So are possible in low light conditions lower sensitivity, which manifests itself in less severe image noise and better detail reproduction.

The 1080p videos that we have captured with the Prime Transformer, look clear and soft. It occurred to any significant artifacts.

The Speaker of the prime does provide a very strong bass, but can not yet compete in terms of clarity in terms of volume with the iPad second

Problems

As mentioned at the beginning of the article, we encountered using the Prime Transformer on a number of problems which may be due to a hardware defect. With the final test results yet so we wait until we get a second test device.

In particular, the loading times of websites fall to negative. Where is our test device painfully slow pumping the bits and bytes through the ether, both the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 The iPad 2 also lightning fast. This applies to any website with practice tests with benchmarks such as Speedtest.net. Also the download speeds of apps from the Market are at a relatively tough year. To test the way, held forth a secured wireless network.

Another problem that may be due to a defect, are common and also like mehrsekündige breaks, bank depositing the tablet when opening apps or navigating through menus. Our contacts from both Asus and Nvidia were not able to understand our problems.

Outlook

The Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime offers a complete fully equipped – and more. It is the first tablet that has a fast-3-Tegra processor with four cores. In addition the manufacturer has an update on the next version of Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) announced for next year. So there seems to be little reason to speak against the just eight millimeters thick Boliden. Seems – as our test unit has a some quirks that are probably due to a hardware defect. We are eagerly awaiting a second demo unit and will then conclude the review.

Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime in pre-test: The first quad-core tablet is here!
General Contributor
Janice is a writer from Chicago, IL. She created the "simple living as told by me" newsletter with more than 12,000 subscribers about Living Better and is a founder of Seekyt.

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