Apple iPad 3 vs Asus Transformer Prime

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Introduction and Design
Introduction:

At long last, it finally boils down to this! We know you’ve been waiting for this one eagerly, and so have we,  especially when the new iPad seemingly proved itself against its rivals in the Motorola DROID XYBOARD 10.1 and Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 most recently. Naturally, there is only one Android based tablet that can give the new iPad a run for its money, and surely enough, the Asus Transformer Prime is bent on showing why it’s that other benchmark device. Honestly, it’s a clash of the titans with these two behemoths, but much like everything else, there can only be one that can reign supreme from the ashes of battle.

Design:

Even before looking over their specs sheets, we have to applaud these two titans for having killer industrial designs that are conceivably memorable in many ways. The more we hold and check out the two, the more we realize they share a lot of commonalities – such as streamlined constructions, metallic casings, and that perfect balance of weight. Technically though, the Asus Transformer Prime is skinnier and lighter, but it’s barely noticeable to the eye or hand. On the other end, we prefer the milled aluminum casing of the new iPad since it seems to repel dirt and debris much better than its rival, and on top of that, caressing and tapping it shows us that it’s the sturdier as well. Overall, there isn’t a definitive winner in which one boasts the better design, but more importantly, they embody all of the qualities of what it means to be a premium tablet.


Adjusting volume and powering on isn’t a problem with either device, that’s because they exhibit springy responses with their physical buttons, but the iPad’s set are raised higher – thus, easier to feel out. Hardly a  shocker anymore, they feature proprietary docking ports for charging and data connectivity, but we like it that the Asus Transformer Prime carries a separate microHDMI port for video-out. To gain that function with the new iPad, it requires the purchase of an optional digital AV adapter. Yet another reason why these two are so similar to one another, micro dots in their casings shield their internal speakers.


Normally, tablets don’t get that much love when it comes to cameras, but that’s not the case with these two as they sport some respectable ones. With the Asus Transformer Prime, it boasts the higher 8-megapixel auto-focus camera with LED flash – whereas, the iPad  carries a 5-megapixel one sans flash. To sweeten things, these two actually feature some other tasteful features such as an F2.4 aperture lens, sensor with backside illumination, and full 1080p video recording. As for their front-facing cameras, the Transformer Prime is outfitted with a 1.3-megapixel snapper, while the iPad simply packs a VGA one.



Display:

Impressively, each tablet’s display is a sight to behold and again reaffirms why they’re regarded as premium. Just as a refresher, the new iPad thrills us with its 9.7” IPS LCD panel, dubbed as the Retina display, because of its reality warping resolution of 2048 x 1536. Meanwhile, the Transformer Prime is still an illustrious one with its 10.1” WXGA (1280 x 800) Super IPS+ LCD panel. On paper, the new iPad has the obvious edge with its 264 ppi pixel density, which is substantial over the 149 ppi figure attached to the Transformer Prime. Calculations aside, though, our eyes really tell us which one is superior. Now seriously people, it’s almost negligible from a far distance to distinguish which one is more detailed, but upon closer inspection, the iPad shows it absolute superiority. Simply, we’re enchanted by its immaculate details that make even the tiniest of text within the web browser more than visible.

Other than that, they share the same wide-viewing angles and vivid color tones to capture our attention from afar. However, we find that the Super IPS+ display of the Transformer Prime to be higher in contrast, which translates over to a brighter appearance – though, it exhibits a warmer tone. In any event, we’re captivated by the two since they’re usable in outdoor conditions with the sun present. No doubt that they’re both lovely in many aspects, but it’s ultimately the iPad’s stellar detail that jumps at us the most.





Interface and Functionality:

Drooling over hardware is one thing, but the biggest differentiator that consumers will need to deal with, is choosing which respective platform experience is most optimum to their needs. As we’ve clearly pointed out countless times, people will like the iPad’s iOS experience for its simplicity and intuitiveness. However, it sacrifices itself in the personalization department, though, it’s the one area that the Asus Transformer Prime excels in. Unlike some of its Android brethren, the Asus Transformer Prime stands out partly because it flaunts the most up-to-date experience with Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich. So yes, it ultimately boils down to simplicity versus personalization.



Thanks to their generous sized displays, there are few problems trying to use the on-screen keyboards of each tablet. Not only are they extremely spacious with their layouts, but they’re accompanied with enough responsiveness to keep up with our feverish rate of input.



At their core, the interface of their respective email applications may look different, but they’re very similar as they utilize familiar 2-panel layouts that are practical to work with. However, if you’re into the whole Gmail thing, there’s no question that the Asus Transformer Prime is the hands-down choice as it features all of the wonderful aspects of Google’s email service on a desktop, but in tablet form obviously.




Processor and Memory:

When we hear the term cutting-edge, these two juggernauts easily come to mind, as they show off their processing power to no end. Honestly, it isn’t necessary to even know what’s running the behind the scenes – that’s because they’re the two most responsive tablets we’ve seen so far. Thanks to the Apple A5x SoC, which consists of a 1GH dual-core CPU and a quad-core GPU, there is nothing that the new iPad can’t handle. Everything, and we mean everything, is accompanied with tight controls and responses. With the Transformer Prime’s quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor, it’s also lightning quick with its movements, however, our keen eyes notice that the iPad’s movement is just a hairline faster. But to tell you the truth, it’s most prevalent with things like pinch zooming in the gallery or browser. Seriously, these are unanimously the two fastest tablets on the market right now.

As we know, the iPad is available in 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB capacities – with no way of expanding its storage. However, you can pick up the Transformer Prime with 32GB or 64GB of internal storage, which can be increased thanks to its microSD card slot.

Internet and Connectivity:

Strictly using Wi-Fi, both devices are able to quickly and properly render complex web pages like ours with little issues. Beyond that, we absolutely adore the wonderful  web browsing experience we’re able to get out of the two tablets. Of course, they’re extremely fast with navigational controls, but again, we’re able to meticulously notice the more fluid movements with the iPad. Indeed that’s nice and all, but the Transformer Prime has the benefit of having Adobe Flash support. We can dissect each to no end, but ultimately, we’re satisfied with their performance.



Currently, the Asus Transformer Prime is available in Wi-Fi form only – whereas, the new iPad can be purchased donning Wi-Fi only or 4G LTE connectivity. Aside from that, the two both feature aGPS, but the Prime packs Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR, while the iPad has Bluetooth 4.0.



Camera:

Tablets aren’t known to possess great cameras, but with these, it’s transparent that their makers intended to give them the very best. And rightfully so, they both deliver exciting shots that are worth printing out. In almost every instance, they produce the same good-looking details, especially with outdoor scenery and macro shots, but the iPad’s 5-megapixel iSight camera shows its prowess over its rival in low lighting situations. Specifically, it wins us over with its correct exposure and natural color reproduction. Well, the Transformer Prime is still tolerable with low lighting situations, but it has a noticeable greenish hue with its colors – then again, it has the benefit of an LED flash to counteract its deficiencies.



Moreover, 1080p video recording is also decent looking with the two, since they share the same pleasant details, smooth capture rate, and clear audio recording. However, the iPad is again able to stand a little above its rival since it offers an anti-shake feature to keep things steady while shooting. On top of that, the Transformer Prime exhibits some recognizable artifacting when panning very quickly.

Apple iPad 3 Sample Video:



Asus Transformer Prime Sample Video:



Multimedia:

Not a shocker with this one people, because yet again, the stock Android music player proves to be more visually appealing to the eyes over the static and conventional looking one in use with the iPad. Presentation aside, our ears are content with the audio being pumped out by their respective speakers. Blasting out some robust tones, we’re also glad to find no evidence of strain or distortion when placing them at their highest volume settings.



There’s no arguing that people will drool over their gorgeous looking displays, but unless you have videos higher than 1080p resolution, there’s not much of a difference with the video watching experience. Sharp, colorful, and smooth, they don’t flinch even once while playing our test videos.



Performance:

Naturally, people will be concerned about battery life since they feature vivid displays and fast processors, but we’re happy to report that it isn’t much of a problem. In fact, while connected via Wi-Fi only, we’re able to easily obtain at least one single day of normal usage out of both tablets – though, it seems to us in our experience that the iPad delivers just a tiny bit more battery life. However, it’s nothing substantial, and simply, they’re above average when compared to other tablets.

Conclusion:

There’s good reason as to why many people regard these two titans as the two best tablets on the market right now. For starters, they are premium in every way, shape, and form – inside and out! Essentially, they epitomize everything that means to be cutting-edge because they share so many drool worthy elements, such as boasting killer industrial designs, lightning fast performances, and top-notch hardware specs. Simply, we have to admit that we’re both wowed and smitten by these stunning tablets.

As always, pricing comes to mind, and for the base $500 price point for each respective tablet, they undeniably offer a whole lot of bang for the buck. To tell you the truth, you can’t go wrong with either, especially when they perform similarly to one another, but the biggest difference that most people will need to tackle, is simply, which platform to stick with. Frankly, these two are in a whole league of their own, and more importantly, they’ll be the benchmark to beat going forward for all other future devices.

Just like two gods going at each other in the heavens, they’re immortal and cannot be defeated – so yes, they stand equally to one another. Therefore, we have to settle for the fact that neither one can actually claim victory seeing that they share the same pedestal. As a whole, you can’t go wrong with them, but as we’re mentioned numerous times already, it’s eventually going to come down to which platform is regarded in your eyes to be the favorable one.

Apple iPad 3 vs Asus Transformer Prime Video Comparison:





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