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ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review

ViewSonic ViewPad 7

Posted: , posted by Basil K.

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Camera and Multimedia:

With a basic front facing camera and a 3MP rear camera with autofocus (though no flash), the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 isn't out to blow any minds and that's good, because it doesn't. With okay colour reproduction, not so great levels of detail and similarly mediocre exposure, it obviously pales in comparison with the Samsung Galaxy Tab's shooter. With no flash, night time and indoor performance isn't great, and while it can handle basic macro photography, it won't produce stellar results. Video capture caps out at 640x480 and as with photo-capture, is decidedly mediocre. It looks passable on the ViewSonic ViewPad 7's low resolution screen, however isn't so great once exported off the device.

Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Samples shot with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review


ViewSonic ViewPad 7 sample video:



Audio playback is pretty good, one of the tablet's strong points in fact. Hampered by Android's uninspiring looking music player, it nevertheless does the job, and there are a range of media managers you can get from the Android Market. More to the point, the ViewPad 7 excels with its sounds quality. As its stereo speakers are used for calls, it would appear ViewSonic have paid special attention to them, and it shows. The output is rounded and not too shrill. Through the 3.5mm headphone jack, music playback isn't quite as great, offering a very standard level of quality.

Audio playback is pretty good - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Audio playback is pretty good - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Audio playback is pretty good - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review

The gallery and video player are both standard Android offerings so there won't be any surprises, however, what will surprise and disappoint are the design flaws that render them sub-par. Viewing angles on the ViewPad 7 have been mentioned, and nowhere do you feel this more than in video playback. On top of this, the 3.5mm headphone jack's position below the tablet (when in landscape) makes no sense. Huge, huge design flaws that mean users can't comfortably watch a movie with the device rested, even in the supplied case/stand. As far as playback options go, it will play MP4 files up to 800x480, but our unit struggled with HD clips.


Internet and Connectivity:

With quad-band 3G and tri-band GSM, the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 offers in the US what the Samsung Galaxy Tab won't - phone functionality, however, this isn't the situation in Europe with the European Tab's phone enabled. Other connectivity options on the device include Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth and a miniUSB connector.

Browsing the web on the ViewPad 7 is a pretty good experience but not great. Thanks to the slower processor, despite Android 2.2 on-board, there's only basic Flash support. Nevertheless, if you can get past this, the 7 inch screen makes for a comfortable size to view online content. The tablet is responsive, with web browsing being the most intuitive and enjoyable aspect of the ViewSonic ViewPad 7. You can use either double-tab or multi-touch in order to zoom in or out. This works well for the most part, and so does the scrolling.

Browsing the web with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Browsing the web with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Browsing the web with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review
Browsing the web with the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 - ViewSonic ViewPad 7 Review


Software:

On-board software includes Documents to Go, a simple note pad, an ebook reader as well as your usual Android tool kit. With 500MB of memory on-board, the ViewSonic ViewPad 7 really needs a card from the get go. Neither the camera app, or Docs to Go will work without one.

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PhoneArena rating:
6Average
Display7.0 inches, 800 x 480 pixels (133 ppi) TFT
Camera3 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon S1, Single core, 600 MHz, ARM11 processor
0.5 GB RAM
Size7.05 x 4.33 x 0.45 inches
(179 x 110 x 11.5 mm )
13.23 oz  (375 g)

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