EVGA Tegra Note 7 Review: Nvidia's Tegra 4 For $200

Gaming On Tegra Note 7

Many of the things we said about native Android gaming on Tegra 4 from our Shield review carry over here. If you missed that commentary, I recommend checking it out. In short, though, there is a growing library of games with Tegra-specific optimizations that add nice graphical touches, and all of those are exposed on the Tegra Note 7 as well.

Dead Trigger 2 on Tegra Note 7Dead Trigger 2 on Tegra Note 7

Dead Trigger 2 on Nexus 5Dead Trigger 2 on Nexus 5

One of our favorite aspects of Shield, however, simply cannot carry over to the Tegra Note 7: physical controls. Naturally, we can't fault the Tegra Note 7 simply for its form factor, but if you're looking for a mobile device build specifically to game, this is probably a good place to remind you that Nvidia has a better-suited alternative.

Obviously conscious of this difference, Nvidia provided us with a Nyko Playpad Pro, which bears a "Built for Nvidia Tegra" logo on its box. The controller dutifully replicates the Shield's controls, but there's no mistaking how much higher-quality the inputs feel on Nvidia's handheld. Simply, for gaming, Shield wins this face-off.

The one area where the Tegra Note 7 lends itself to a better Android gaming experience is touchscreen-intensive titles. Because of its form factor, interacting with the Shield's screen remains an ergonomic nightmare.

More Dead Trigger 2 on the Tegra Note 7More Dead Trigger 2 on the Tegra Note 7

More Dead Trigger 2 on the Nexus 5More Dead Trigger 2 on the Nexus 5

It's also important to point out that the Tegra Note 7 does not have Shield's GameStream feature, which works with a GeForce-equipped PC to stream games to the handheld via Wi-Fi. This is one of Shield's most remarkable selling points, and not having it on the Tegra Note 7 may disappoint gamers. Just bear in mind that, without Shield's physical inputs, PC gaming on a tablet just doesn't work.

Aside from gaming, though, the Shield's unique focus makes the Tegra Note 7 a much more utilitarian device. Browsing the Web and consuming media content is outright better on the tablet with its larger screen.