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Trekstor Surftab Xiron 7.0 HD: Well-built low-cost tablet

Trekstor Surftab Xiron 7.0 HD
From the front, the Xiron 7.0 HD is reminiscent of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3, but if you turn it over, you are greeted by a much nicer metal shell.

Other than the iPad Mini, a couple of vintages of the Google Nexus 7, and Iriver’s Nexus rival the Wowtab, we really haven’t been impressed by the small format tablets so far in the last year or two. There has been a lot of plastic and questionable performance even from the big electronics giants. That leaves the field free for lesser-known competitors.

One of these is Germany’s Trekstor, which released a tablet that, on paper, looks like it can compete well with tablets such as the Acer Iconia B1, HP Slate 7 and Asus Memopad HD 7. It has a quad-core Cortex A7 processor, 1280 x 800 ips -screen, Android 4.2, hdmi output that supports up to 4k resolution (but inter directly with a somewhat high frame rate), and micro sd type memory card. The built-in memory is a modest 8 gigabytes. It’s not ideal, but should be enough for a while if you save the media on a card instead.

The price is approximately SEK 1,500. It is in class with competitors with similar specs. So then the question is how well put together the Xiron 7.0 HD is. From the outside, we can state that it is a very well-built small plate, with a nice aluminum back, relatively thin design and high-class buttons and contacts. The front is in milky white plastic, and has a surface that seems to attract fingerprints quite easily, so have a cleaning cloth ready.

The screen is a bright thing with good viewing angles and nice color reproduction. The backlight leaks in a lot from the sides when you want to show dark tones, but no more than we can accept. The control in the touch screen is not perfect, and swiping in particular feels choppy. A system update that should fix those problems helped a bit, but the tablet still has some annoying quirks in the touch navigation. Not significantly more or less than most other budget tablets though.

Trekstor Surftab Xiron 7.0 HD
The camera at the back is not exactly a highlight. Only two megapixels and no LED flash.

Trekstor has its own system chip with a quad-core Coretx processor at one gigahertz and a PowerVR graphics chip. It handles some things very well, such as web navigation on heavier pages. However, when playing streamed video, we encounter issues with choppy playback. Whether it is due to poor performance or lack of stability in the Wi-Fi connection is difficult to say. However, other devices we tested streamed without issue on the same Wi-Fi network.

Graphics performance is also nothing for demanding games, but we hardly expected that from a tablet in this price range either. In fact, it outperforms many of its competitors. A negative thing seems to be the battery life, where the Asus Memopad HD 7 managed up to nine hours of video playback, the Xiron 7.0 HD only lasts a little over six hours.

So the question is what you want. This is the best-looking and most comfortable of the cheap 7-inchers we’ve tested recently. In terms of performance, it holds up well and there is absolutely nothing wrong with the display. But if you want more battery time, it’s the competitors that apply.

Trekstor Surftab Xiron 7.0 HD
Manufacturer: Trekstor, www.trekstor.de
Processor: Cortex A7, 1 GHz quad core.
Graphics: Power VR SGX 544.
Memory: 1GB ddr3.
Storage: 8 GB, space for micro sd.
Screen: 7 inch ips, 1280 x 800 pixels.
Connections: Micro usb, micro hdmi, headphone.
Wireless: 802.11b/g/n, bluetooth.
Cameras: 2 megapixel rear, 0.3 megapixel front.
Operating system: Android 4.2.
Battery life: 6 hours 9 minutes of streaming video.
Size: 190 x 116 x 9 cm.
Weight: 290 g
Award: SEK 1,500

Plus: Well built. Good display. Approved performance.
Minus: Questionable touch function. Short battery life.
Grade: (6 out of 10)

Antutu benchmarks: 12,272 points
3dmark Ice Storm Unlimited: 4,024 points

Reference, Asus MemoPad 7 HD:
Antutu benchmarks: 13379 points
3dmark Ice Storm Unlimited: 2,512 points

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