Review: Xiaomi Mi Pad, the first Xiaomi tablet

Xiaomi Mi Pad

Today we present the Italian Xiaomi Mi Pad review, the first Xiaomi tablet and the world's first tablet equipped with the SoC Nvidia Tegra K1.

Before proceeding with the review, let's remember that we also made a preview video with a first analysis of the device and its features that you can achieve following this link.

Thank you again for having sent us the Xiaomi Mi Pad, but also for having reserved for our readers a discount on all the products present in the store, usable through the code GIZXIAOMI.

Video review: Xiaomi Mi Pad, Xiaomi's first tablet

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Xiaomi Mi Pad, complete specifications

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Video focus: Xiaomi Mi Pad gaming test

Review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad - Display

One of the main features of this tablet is the 7.9 inch display with IPS technology, 2048 x 1536 resolution and Gorilla Glass protection. The size of this panel is a good compromise between tablets of about 10 inches and tablets by 7 inches, ensuring a proper balance between portability and content usage. IPS technology allows the panel to offer excellent viewing angles and a chromatic range that tends to the natural, with well-replicated colors.

Xiaomi Mi Pad

In general it is a display of excellent quality, with a good color balance and good sharpness. The brightness is adequate and, thanks also to the precise sensor, you get a fair visibility even outdoors.

The aspect ratio of this display is 4: 3. This means that the use of applications, games or web browsing will be particularly valued, but in the playback of multimedia content you will have to accept the black bands above and below the video, as shown in the video review, as the multimedia content in high definition respect the aspect ratio of 16: 9.

Display Xiaomi Mi Pad

Xiaomi used a high resolution panel despite the tablet's selling price, which offers good reproduction in all contexts. The colors are not particularly saturated, but the user experience is generally very pleasant.

Review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad - Performance

From the point of view of performance, the Xiaomi Mi Pad is an absolutely exceptional tablet. It is the world's first tablet to use the Nvidia Tegra K1 SoC, presented by Nvidia as a real revolution for mobile technology. The processor offers four Cortex A15 cores running at the 2.2GHz frequency plus a core for energy saving.

Xiaomi Mi Pad

The performance of this processor is really amazing. Using the well-known Antutu benchmarking software, the score in the various tests oscillates between 39.500 and 41.500 points, a truly monstrous outcome. This tablet is technically more powerful than any new generation smartphone with Qualcomm Snapdragon 801, such as HTC One M8, Samsung Galaxy S5, Oppo Find 7, Sony Xperia Z2 or Vivo XShot.

If the computational power offered by the Xiaomi Mi Pad is the first of the class, the graphic power is the first in the world! The tablet is in fact equipped with 192 graphics cores, support for Direct X12, Unreal Engine 4, Open GL 4.4, Open GL ES 3.1 and CUDA technology. Moreover, the "K" that we find in the name of this chip, Nvidia Tegra K1, represents the Kepler architecture, used in the creation of super-computers, which represents an absolute novelty regarding mobile devices.

Xiaomi Mi Pad

This graphic sector represents a real revolution for mobile technology, and is able to bring video games with console-class graphics on tablets and smartphones, comparable to consoles like Xbox or Playstation of the last generation. When Nvidia will team up with the main software houses to create games dedicated to the Nvidia Tegra K1 chip, the Xiaomi Mi Pad will simply leave behind every tablet of the competition, at least for the videogame field.

The tablet also comes with 2GB of RAM, which provides a good experience for multitasking, and 16GB of internal memory. There will also be an 64GB internal memory model, and both models offer expandable memory through Micro SD to further 128GB.

While using video games, the tablet starts to heat up, while still maintaining a temperature that does not generate problems in keeping the device in hand. With the FaceWork demo made by Nvidia, which we have shown in the gaming focus, the heat reaches a decidedly high level, probably due to a lack of optimization of the demo.

Review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad - Design

The design of the Xiaomi Mi Pad is simple and very clean, with a structure made of good quality plastic materials. The corners are rounded, and the separation between the back cover color and the display black is very pleasing.

The details are handled as by the Xiaomi tradition, although there is a small assembly space on the left side of the tabletop. It may be a small defect of the first units produced, but we are not sure.

The design was detailed in detail in a comparison photo, in which we placed the Xiaomi Mi Pad near its main source of inspiration, the Apple iPad Mini. The photo comparison can be reached through this link.

Review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad - Audio, Battery and Connectivity

The audio compartment of the Xiaomi Mi Pad consists of a double speaker on the back of the device. Positioning is not ideal for avoiding suffocation of the sound, but the speakers are placed near the curvature of the back of the tablet, so the gripping positions in which you are going to obstruct the speakers will be very few.

Qualitatively audio is a pleasant surprise, with a high volume and acceptable playback quality. Also surprising is the sound in the headphones, which even at maximum volume manages to maintain good sound quality.

Mi Pad vs iPad Mini

The connectivity of Xiaomi Mi Pad could represent its main weakness, even if this depends a lot on the use that the user intends to make of his tablet. In fact, we find Wifi and bluetooth, but cellular connectivity and GPS are lacking. In particular, Wifi is particularly powerful, even if the connection to the router is sometimes not instantaneous. The tablet also supports OTG technology.

As for the battery, the Xiaomi Mi Pad is equipped with a 6700mAh battery with excellent durability. In the simplest use of the tablet, with navigation, multimedia playback or reading, you will have no problems reaching or exceeding two days of use.

On a particularly intense day of exercise, in which you can really stress the device, you will still be in trouble at night. As far as gaming is concerned, consumption is obviously higher, but in this case quite good.

Specifically, we evaluated the battery life in a real gaming session. Playing with the tablet for 50 minutes in a row without interruption with brightness set to automatic but at the maximum level with Ripitide GP2 and Modern Combat 4 and maximum graphics settings, we consumed the 19% battery, really bad. The tablet will therefore guarantee you about 4 hours and a half of intense gaming continued, even more with lesser games and reduced brightness.

Review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad - Software

Xiaomi Mi Pad's software is Android 4.4.2 KitKat, reworked by the Xiaomi MIUI ROM, which first landed on a tablet.

MIUI for tablet
This MIUI version supports double layout, with vertical and horizontal orientation. The applications, as in the smartphone version of this ROM, are arranged on the various pages of the home screen, without an app drawer. With a simple gesture of "zooming back" on a home page, you will have access to an edit mode, which allows you to add widgets, home pages, change wallpaper, change the scrolling effect of the pages themselves and more.

Even the settings have been redesigned, and offer a more appropriate graphics to a tablet. Among the home pages there is a page exclusively dedicated to widgets, such as calendar, calculator and notes, specially made to ensure quick access to this type of operations.

Various MIUI options, such as the possibility of excluding a single app from multiple closure, or the ability to change the color of the notification LED, have also been included in this tablet version, while others, like different security settings, are not have been implemented yet.

In general, we are talking about a very fluid and pleasing ROM, which has some bugs, as shown in the video review, so the subsequent updates will have to make some fixes and introduce new features.

Price and Conclusions

We arrived at the end of this complete review of the Xiaomi Mi Pad. Drawing general conclusions is quite difficult, as it is not a simple tablet, but the first tablet of Xiaomi, as well as the first tablet in the world with the SoC Nvidia Tegra K1 . Moreover, not to be overlooked, this is the first appearance of MIUI ROM on a tablet.

Xiaomi has packed an extremely performing tablet, equipped with a top-level hardware compartment, which also embodies the mobile technology revolution that Nvidia is trying to achieve. Buying the Xiaomi Mi Pad you will have a powerful device, with a beautiful display, an excellent battery life, a camera that surprises and a pleasant software but not entirely mature. This last aspect, however, does not worry us, especially considering the regularity of Xiaomi in software updates, which, of course, will not fail for this device.

Moreover, this product is one of the few that, rather than being quickly overcome by a subsequent model, will offer great growth margins, with a better optimization of MIUI ROM, but above all with the arrival of games dedicated to the Tegra K1 chip.

The biggest lack is certainly the absence of 3G / 4G connectivity, which could direct some users towards competing devices. But we must consider that everything that the Mi Pad has to offer comes with an appropriate price, 287 euro in Italy on with 24 of Italian warranty (with discount code GIZTOP), 180 euro in China. The Chinese price will obviously never be obtained by buying from our country, as it will be necessary to add the shipment, the reload of international dealers and any customs.

In conclusion we can say that, adding the 4G connectivity, Xiaomi would have made one of the best devices in the world, but also as it is, the Xiaomi Mi Pad is a great tablet with great possibilities for growth. My subjective judgment is very simple: will be my next tablet.