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Background Information On Our Benchmarks

Samsung Series 7 11.6" Slate: Breathing New Life Into Tablet PCs
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Display Analysis

Before we start our rather rigorous benchmarking process, we disable dynamic brightness because it prevents us from getting an accurate and reproducible measurement of the display’s potential. Second, brightness is set to the highest value. If you don't use the same settings, your color gamut is going to look smaller than what our benchmarks show.

With respect to gamma, understand that it doesn’t affect black or white performance, only midtones. If gamma is set too high, the midtones appear dark. If it's set too low, they're pale. Adobe, Apple, and Microsoft all recommend a gamma of 2.2. It's an arbitrary value carried over from the NTSC standard, but it was originally chosen because it allows colors to appear more natural in slightly dim environments.

Battery Life & Recharge Time

Testing a tablet’s battery life tends to be highly variable unless you control the entire experience from beginning to end. Cumulatively, touch gestures don’t have a great impact on battery life. The biggest factors are CPU/GPU processing, screen brightness, volume, and Wi-Fi use. In order to accurately measure battery life, I coded a script that automatically plays MP3s at 50% volume while browsing different Wikipedia pages every 12 minutes. This benchmark is probably overkill, but it gives you an idea of a worst-case scenario.

Very few sites go through the trouble of benchmarking recharge time. However, in my view, it's as important as battery life. Though, it's not necessarily desirable to have a fast recharging time. Ideally, you want a nice slow charge so that your battery lasts more than a few hundred charges. Rapid charge times keep you away from the wall socket longer, but in the long run it cuts down on the health of the battery. Usually, the rate of charge starts to slow down somewhere in the 80% to 95% range, which is why the charging time from 0% to 10% is faster than 90% to 100%.

Real-World Performance

Early on, we discovered how difficult it is to benchmark tablets.

Apple iPad: Input Lag Benchmark

Benchmarking responsiveness with a camera is the easiest approach. Of course, normal cameras don't cut it, since they only shoot at 29 FPS. That's unacceptable if you're trying to measure precise time differences. Going the stopwatch route is no better, due to human-introduced errors. As a result, we're using a 1000 FPS high-speed camera to measure performance. Since one frame equals one millisecond, it’s possible to measure timing with a high degree of accuracy.

Boot and launch times aren't as important as input lag in our view. However, we're defining input lag in a slightly different way from the manner it’s used in discussing display technology. Our focus is more on real-world usability. As such, we define input lag "as the time between pressing a key and text appearing on-screen." This tells you how fast a tablet is registering an action. Ideally, you want low input lag so that you don't feel the tablet stuttering as you type or click on buttons. The average college student has a reaction time of 200 milliseconds for visual stimuli, so that's really the target for which we look.

Wireless Performance

Earlier this year, the lab overhauled the process of evaluating Wi-Fi performance. For background information, check out page 10 of Acer Iconia Tab A500: A Tablet With Honeycomb 3.1. Moving forward, I'm going to focus mostly on throughput, which is why I've elected to exclude response time scores. Generally, these two metrics go hand in hand, so I feel that it's somewhat redundant to publish both.

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Top Comments
  • 14 Hide
    g-unit1111 , January 2, 2012 3:36 AM
    Do. Want. Finally - a tablet that doesn't require a proprietary operating system that needs 1,000,000,000 apps for every website on the internet in order to function properly. It has an SSD and not flash memory. It has a real working version of Windows - with a great interface on top of it. This looks like a tablet I can get behind.
  • 11 Hide
    friskiest , January 2, 2012 3:41 AM
    A5 vs SB,. hehehe (grinning :D )
Other Comments
  • 14 Hide
    g-unit1111 , January 2, 2012 3:36 AM
    Do. Want. Finally - a tablet that doesn't require a proprietary operating system that needs 1,000,000,000 apps for every website on the internet in order to function properly. It has an SSD and not flash memory. It has a real working version of Windows - with a great interface on top of it. This looks like a tablet I can get behind.
  • 9 Hide
    Anonymous , January 2, 2012 3:39 AM
    A very nice tablet! Hoping that ivy bridge will allow faster processers without creating too much heat and saving battery. I'm really looking into getting a tablet in the future to replace my notebook and this looks is very reassuring that things are improving :p .
  • 11 Hide
    friskiest , January 2, 2012 3:41 AM
    A5 vs SB,. hehehe (grinning :D )
  • 7 Hide
    Anonymous , January 2, 2012 4:33 AM
    What about the digitizer? I appreciate the comparisons to the Asus EEE Slate, but that has a 256-level pressure sensitive wacom digitizer on top of the screen. And no mention of it or what is on this device?
  • 1 Hide
    joytech22 , January 2, 2012 5:07 AM
    Yay finally, I saw this in shops around a month ago and wonder when tom's would cover it. :p 
  • 3 Hide
    Gamer-girl , January 2, 2012 5:11 AM
    The UI makes it seem like a smartphone. You keep mentioning the pen but there is no comparison? Does it have palm rejection?
  • 6 Hide
    theuniquegamer , January 2, 2012 5:27 AM
    Instead of current sandybridge (i.e hd 3000) the should give an amd llano which has a better gpu or the ivy bridge mobile cpus (which is with hd 4000 gpu) and a lower TDP.
  • 1 Hide
    alyoshka , January 2, 2012 6:22 AM
    Isn't it a little steep for a 1000$....??? After all it's a Samsung, 11.6Inch Tab.......
    I think it'd be a lot more wiser to buy a laptop for that price and get a much more efficient and powerful piece of tech.
  • -3 Hide
    alyoshka , January 2, 2012 6:26 AM
    I would have given the Note from Samsung a thought had it had 7.5 installed on it..... but again..... it's a samsung.....
  • 3 Hide
    dimar , January 2, 2012 6:26 AM
    Might get one once they upgrade to Ivy Bridge revision.. And by then, I hope Samsung can make it even lighter.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , January 2, 2012 6:48 AM
    This model has a noticeable problem where the screen separates from the bezel. Was strongly considering buying this laptop before that, hopefully thou now it may be fixed.

    http://forum.tabletpcreview.com/samsung/46145-everyone-who-own-slate-please-post-you-batchnumber-modelnummer-state-screen.html
  • 2 Hide
    joytech22 , January 2, 2012 8:49 AM
    Lol.. Ever tried NOT putting a video to Private that's in this article that was uploaded to Tom's channel?
    I mean.. -.-
  • -5 Hide
    gondor , January 2, 2012 9:46 AM
    Why is it called an ass wipe keyboard ? I'm sure the marketing team behind this brilliance could easily come up with something more catchy.
  • 3 Hide
    darkstar845 , January 2, 2012 12:12 PM
    Can't wait for future tablets when ivy bridge or haswell processors come out.
  • 1 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , January 2, 2012 1:11 PM
    ^ and after that, "cant wait till silvermont launches"
  • -6 Hide
    hobojoe2012 , January 2, 2012 1:56 PM
    Over $1000 for PC without a keyboard and only one USB slot is NUTS! Samsung FAILS on this one.
  • 0 Hide
    falchard , January 2, 2012 2:11 PM
    I think Acer was more successful on this one with its A500 and W500 tablets. They have a better graphics chip.
  • 1 Hide
    ldetex , January 2, 2012 2:26 PM
    Instead of buying a case and a stand, why not put a hinge in the case and it would do double duty. Throw in a few keys into the base and you get more productive and dont have to worry about loss of the stylus. A super thin laptop with a great display and an SSD, such as LG has introduced into Japan, is so much better,
  • -4 Hide
    jemm , January 2, 2012 2:34 PM
    I´d get a notebook instead.
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