Motorola XOOM MZ604 Gaming Performance Review

Posted by B. Johnson
Motorola XOOM MZ604 Gaming Performance ReviewHi guys, welcome back!

We all certainly know that Motorola is one of the smartphone manufacturers that never had a chance to make a huge impact in tablet-making business – similar just like HTC.

However, these 2 specialized smartphone makers actually used to have their own homemade tablets available to buy around the market in the past – HTC with its homemade HTC Flyer and HTC JetStream, while Motorola with the tablet that i’m about to show today.

Interestingly, last time i heard, rumor has it that HTC is tasked by Google to make the next Nexus tablet, allegedly powered by NVIDIA’s latest and greatest – Tegra K1 processor, with that staggering 192-core Kepler GPU.

So if that comes to fruition – which is likely to happen -, then Motorola is the only one that will remain inactive in tablet market, at least for now.

Motorola XOOM MZ604 benchmarks and gaming performance

Anyway, earlier i just showed you one tablet made by Samsung which i thought could be a good gaming tablet – if not great, let alone the best.

That tablet was Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9, which features a dual-core Tegra 2 processor along with its GeForce ULP GPU.

Talking about this processor, i’ve said a lot in many of my previous reviews on that Tegra processors – from Tegra 2, Tegra 3, Tegra 4 and the latest-gen Tegra K1 – have always been my favorite mobile chipsets in tablet market, alongside Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processor.

So this is the main reason why today i’m really excited to show you one other slate made by Motorola which also is powered by the same Tegra 2 dual-core processor.

I actually also still have one other Tegra 2 tablet under my sleeve (although i don’t wear long-sleeved shirt today. Haha).

And that tablet is Lenovo ThinkPad, which i’m about to show you in my next review.

But we’ll talk more about this Lenovo tablet in the next review. Today, let’s focus now on this Motorola slate first.

Similar just like most of 10-inch counterparts out there, Motorola XOOM MZ604 is also packing a 10.1-inch display sporting the 1280x800 pixel display (which is a perfect match with its Tegra 2 dual-core processor).

Besides its Tegra 2 processor and its 720p display, there are many other things to be liked from this tablet.

So if you’re interested to know more about it, let’s read on my personal review of Motorola XOOM MZ604. Enjoy!

Introduction

As i mentioned above, in the past few years, Motorola has been really inactive in tablet-making business.

However, just like HTC, this company used to also have an Android tablet lying around the tablet stores in the past.

Motorola’s homemade tablet is called Motorola XOOM MZ604.

The thing that really gets me interested to bring up this tablet and show it to you here is actually its Tegra 2 dual-core processor.

Motorola XOOM MZ604
Motorola XOOM MZ604

Despite being an older-gen – or outdated processor, if you would -, this NVIDIA’s homemade chipset actually has a lot to offer to any tablet that uses it.

The most prominent advantages that this Tegra 2 can possibly provide to the tablet are the powerful graphical performance and amazingly, great long lasting battery life.

There is one tablet powered by Tegra 2 processor from Acer, and i already made the review of it a couple of months ago (or last year if i’m not mistaken).

It’s called Acer Iconia Tab 500, the same 10.1-inch tablet with 720p display just like this Motorola Xoom.

But the most impressive thing about this Acer tablet is – according to some reviews – this Acer Iconia Tab 500 could last in 2 days even in heavy usage.

And the more impressively, this tablet is only powered by a small 3260mAh power battery – which is considered as too small for a 10-inch tablet that usually has up to 7000mAh battery capacity.

So this is one of the reasons why you should like Motorola XOOM MZ604 tablet.

I mean:
  • it has a pretty sharp 720p display,
  • it has a powerful dual-core Tegra 2 processor (which used to be the world’s first dual-core processor in smartphone/tablet markets) – meaning that it’ll have good gaming performance -,
  • it has great battery life (given its less-power-hungry Tegra 2 and not to mention, the fact that Motorola has been really great in battery life department of its devices),
  • it has 5MP camera (which awesomely has dual-LED flash and autofocus,
  • plus 2MP camera on the front),
  • it has microSD card slot for up to 32GB,
  • and last but not least, this one is made by Motorola – which is known as the company that always puts quality first on its products.
But the questions are, with all of these awesome goodies and complete set of features provided on this tablet, does Motorola XOOM MZ604 have what it takes to be a good gaming tablet?

Is this tablet still relevant to be positioned alongside other 10-inch rivals in today’s tablet market?

Is it worth it to buy a tablet from Motorola, which is not popularly known around the tablet-making business?

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  • No SIM
  • Released May 2011
  • Weight 730 g (1.61 lb)
  • Status Discontinued
  • 10.1 inch TFT capacitive touchscreen, 800 x 1280 pixels, (~149 ppi pixel density), 16M colors
  • 1 GB RAM
  • Dual-core 1 GHz Cortex-A9 Nvidia Tegra 2 T20 Chipset
  • ULP GeForce GPU
  • Android OS 3.0 Honeycomb, upgradable to v4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich
  • microSD Memory Card slot for up to 32 GB
  • 16/32/64 GB Internal storage
  • 5 MP rear-facing camera with autofocus, dual-LED flash,
  • 2 MP front-facing camera
  • No GPRS
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
  • Bluetooth
  • No EDGE
  • No Radio
  • USB
  • HDMI port
  • HTML, Adobe Flash Browser
  • GPS
  • Java MIDP emulator
  • Colors Black
  • Non-removable Li-Ion battery
  • Accelerometer, gyro, barometer, compass Sensors
  • Up to 80 hours of Music play
  • Li-Ion (25 Wh) battery
  • Up to 336 hours of Stand-by
  • Up to 9 hours of Talk time
To perfectly honest, from all the Tegra 2 tablets that i’ve already reviewed on this website, not one of them that comes even close to the quality that Motorola provides on this tablet.

Motorola XOOM is – for me – the best version of Tegra 2 tablet.

This tablet features a 10.1-inch display sporting the resolution of 720p (1280x800 pixel display), a dual-core Tegra 2 processor clocked at 1GHz per core, 1GB of RAM, GeForce ULP GPU, 25Wh battery capacity (or equal to 3250mAh), 5MP rear camera with dual-LED flash and autofocus, 2MP camera on the front, 16/32/64GB of internal storage options, microSD card slot for up to 32GB and some other standard features.

Screen

There’s nothing special on the display of this tablet.

Motorola XOOM features a 10.1-inch display sporting the 1280x800 pixel resolution (with pixel density of -149 ppi), which is just not on par with most of 10-inch tablets that you see on the market today – which already jump to the 1080p or even 2.5K bandwagon.

But even so, the display of Motorola XOOM still looks pretty sharp and great for most of the basic tasks that you throw on the screen – like watching movies, reading books/magazines, browsing the web, checking out photos or even playing games.

However, as for reading books or browsing the web, you’ll certainly need to do the pinch-to-zoom gesture quite a lot especially when text or images don’t look clearly in overview mode.

Not to mention, given that Tegra 2 processor on this tablet is not optimized perfectly to do HD video playback, then you'll have some trouble watching HD movies or videos on YouTube.

User Interface

Similar just like any other tablets with Honeycomb software build, Motorola XOOM also comes with almost the same looking homescreen, features, looks, skins, wallpapers or probably icons.

The drop down notification window is on the right edge side, while the drop-down setting window on the left corner, the bottom navigation on the left corner and pretty much everything on its UI looks similar with most of Android tablets that come with stock Android UI.

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As a Tegra-powered, it’s not gonna be so surprising to see that Motorola XOOM will be great in gaming performance.

But let’s talk first about the overall performance of this tablet before we go straight to its gaming performance.

In terms of performance – overall performance -, this tablet will likely be pretty similar with Acer Iconia Tab 500 tablet, given their similar spec sheet.
  • From the same 720p resolution on 10.1-inch display (not to mention, the same -149ppi),
  • the same dual-core Tegra 2 processor with the same 1GHz clock speed and GeForce ULP GPU,
  • the same 1GB of RAM,
  • the same software build out of the box (even with the same future upgradable version to Ice Cream Sandwich)
  • and even the same 5MP and 2MP cameras back and front (although this, of course, doesn’t have anything to do with their performance).
That’s on paper. But this can go the same in the real time performance.

Thanks to the Tegra 2 processor, GeForce ULP GPU and 1GB of RAM under the hood, Motorola XOOM will undoubtedly be fast in performance, smooth in experience and powerful in graphical sector.

So you can expect this tablet to perform normally smooth especially for doing any basic tasks – like watching movies, browsing the web, using live wallpaper, checking out photos, editing documents (videos or Office docs), reading contents like books/magazines and the most importantly, playing games.

As a gaming tablet, Motorola XOOM will also be able to deliver a satisfying smooth performance even when playing some high-performing games with some heavy load of advanced graphics and visual effects in the gameplay.

However, given that Tegra 2 dual-core is already considered as outdated for today’s standards and not even on par anymore with the current-gen mobile processors – like Tegra 3, Tegra 4, Tegra K1, Snapdragon 800/600/801 or Apple’s A7 chipset -, then the games that will likely run smoothly in full graphics on this tablet are the ones that were released back then in 2012 or around that year – like PES 2012, Asphalt 5/6, Modern Combat 1 and 2, N.O.V.A 1 and 2, Need for Speed Undercover and SHIFT, GTA III, ShadowGun, Samurai Showdown or Dead Trigger I.

Meanwhile, for some latest graphically demanding games like Asphalt 8: Airborne, GTA San Andreas, Modern Combat 4, N.O.V.A 3 or Dead Trigger 2, i have doubts that these games will run smoothly in full graphics on Motorola XOOM. It’s just not possible.

But the good news is, some of the latest games that you see today on Google Play Store also provide the option to set their graphics to even the lowest level – like Asphalt 8, Dead Trigger 2 and GTA San Andreas -.

So even if these games don’t perform smoothly in full graphics, you’re probably still able to play these games smoothly with medium or even low-level graphics setting.

Overall, Motorola XOOM can be a good gaming tablet. It has almost all the elements of a great gaming tablet.
  • it has a great powerful processor and graphics chipset,
  • it has pretty huge 1GB of RAM (but the usable memory will be less than that),
  • it has pretty sharp 720p display (instead of unimpressive low 1024x600 pixel display),
  • it has great battery life (according to what i've seen on video reviews of Acer Iconia Tab 500 that uses the same Tegra 2 processor),
  • it has nicely good grip design for gaming and the most importantly, there is a lot of games (mostly older ones) that this tablet is capable to play.
Anyway guys, if you want to know more about the gaming performance of Motorola XOOM MZ604, including what games that will run smoothly in full graphics on this tablet, check out my YouTube video playlist or Pinterest page. :)

Battery Life

Despite the low sales and popularity - in the smartphone world, Motorola has been been widely known to make great devices with long lasting battery life.

The most popular devices from this company that are so superior in battery life are Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX, MAXX HD, DROID RAZR HD, Moto G, Moto E, Moto X and many more.

So it clearly shows how this manufacturer really puts a lot of priority in this sector when making its devices.

And that means, you can totally believe that most of Motorola Android devices have great battery life.

It goes the same with Motorola XOOM.

This tablet is powered by 3260mAh power battery inside that’s not only capable to deliver an all-day-long battery life to the users, but this tablet is more than happier to accompany its users even for 2 days of usage in the row.

This is actually believable because according to what i’ve seen on other Tegra dual-core tablet – Acer Iconia Tab 500 -, this tablet, as mentioned above, amazingly has great long lasting battery life in even 2 days in the row, despite using just a smaller 3260mAh power battery inside.

This could mean that the dual-core Tegra 2 processor inside this Acer’s tablet is not that power hungry – probably given its low clock speed or maybe its 720p display, that don’t suck a lot of power from the battery.

So with that being said, then you can expect the same on Motorola XOOM.

As a matter of fact, given that Motorola has been known with its long-lasting Android devices, then Motorola XOOM is more than capable to survive in 2 days or more, even in heavy usage.

Overall, in terms of battery life, there’s no question anymore about how superior this Motorola tablet in that department.

It will be great, long lasting and able to accompany you in more than 1 day for sure – which is more than enough for a 10-inch media-consumption and gaming tablet.

But of course, it also depends on which type of user are you.

If you are a power user and will likely use this tablet to do some heavy intense tasks without resting the screen at all - like watching movies in marathon or playing games in the row -, then its battery life could drop drastically to just around 7 to 9 hours the longest until it asks you to recharge the battery.

But this is still considered as pretty good for a 10-inch media-consumption tablet.

My Personal Opinions

So in conclusion, in my personal opinion – despite being an older-gen tablet with older-gen processor -, i still think that Motorola XOOM is no doubt a great 10-inch tablet out there on the market – even until now.

The reasons are simple:
  • it has pretty sharp display,
  • it has a fast Tegra 2 processor and powerful GeForce ULP GPU,
  • it has complete set of cameras and its features (dual-LED flash and autofocus),
  • it has outstanding battery life (it’ll probably be really hard for you to kill this tablet’s battery life),
  • it has great Android features,
  • and pretty much everything about this tablet is just great.
However, in terms of gaming performance, this tablet still leaves a lot to be desired. It’s not because its gaming performance is lame.

No – that’s wrong.

It’s more because – given its outdated Tegra 2 processor, which is just not on par anymore with today’s mobile chipsets -, then you’ll likely have some problem when playing some of the latest and newest graphics intense games on Google Play Store – like Asphalt 8: Airborne, GTA San Andreas, Dead Trigger 2, Modern Combat 4 or N.O.V.A 3.

I’m pretty sure that these high-performing games will not run smoothly in full graphics on this Motorola tablet – due to its outdated Tegra 2 processor.

But even so, there is still a lot of older games that you're still able to play with this tablet. Motorola XOOM may not be a great gaming tablet on the market today.

But at least, it’s still reliable to handle most of older games released in 2012 or around that year – as i mentioned a lot above.

So Motorola XOOM is great as media-consumption tablet, it’s pretty good for gaming, it’s pretty great in camera department, it’s long lasting in battery life, and it’s made by Motorola – which has been known as the company that makes high-quality products.

However, if you’re planning to get this tablet around the tablet stores today, you might find some trouble given that this tablet was released back then in 2011 and it’s not even popular around the world.

Not to mention, Motorola has stopped the production of this tablet, meaning that there will be no more units left around the tablet stores today.

Anyway, to answer some of the questions in the ‘introduction’ section, here are my answers:
  1. As a gaming tablet, i would say – Yes, Motorola XOOM is a good gaming tablet, but not that great – given its outdated Tegra 2 processor which probably is not capable to perform great when handling some of the latest graphically demanding games like Asphalt 8, Modern Combat 4, GTA San Andreas or Dead Trigger 2.
  2. Despite using some medium-grade hardware specs, i think that Motorola XOOM is still relevant to be positioned alongside today’s tablet market. This tablet may not stack up against today’s flagship rivals (like iPad Air, Google Nexus 10, Samsung GALAXY Tab Pro/Tab S, Sony Xperia Z/Z2 or Asus Transformer TF701T with Tegra 4), however, given that this tablet has all the elements of a great media-consumption and gaming tablet, i have no single doubt to say that Motorola XOOM is still a good purchase for you if you’re looking for a decent media-consumption tablet.
  3. Yes, this tablet is worth your money – despite being an older-gen tablet with some outdated and medium-grade specs -, especially if you manage to buy it in the price range around $179 to $230. If it hits the $300, then Motorola XOOM becomes useless to buy because there are many other options of tablets that are way better than this Motorola’s tablet – in terms of specs and performance -, like LG G Pad 8.4, Sony Xperia Z, Google Nexus 10, iPad mini 2, Xiaomi Mi Pad and many more.

Disclaimer: Hi guys, bear in mind that this is not some in-depth review. This is Read more...
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