Amazon Fire HD 7 Review (2014): The new refreshed model with much better hardware in its class

Posted by B. Johnson
Amazon Fire HD 7 Review: The new refreshed model with much better hardware in its classHi guys, welcome back!

Amazon probably has a better luck this year with its new Kindle lineup.

And i’m a bit positive on that because what Amazon has in stores this holiday season in 2014 could turn out to be selling great on the market.

First of all, Amazon has 2 new pretty great devices priced at low-end market - Amazon Fire HD 6 and Amazon Fire HD 7 (which i’m about to show you in this review).

The 6-inch model is actually the one that really makes me impressed because it has some pretty great goodies on its package, like:
  • 720p resolution on 6-inch display, 
  • 2MP and VGA cameras back and front, 
  • good battery life, 
  • smooth fast experience, 
  • solid build quality (it’s made out of plastic but still feels sturdy in hands) 
  • and the most importantly are its processor and GPU that according to Amazon, are able to deliver 3 times graphical performance as Samsung GALAXY Tab 4.

But amazingly, this tablet only costs around $170, which is really cheap for a pretty good device like this.

Amazon Fire HD 7 (2014) benchmarks and gaming performance

Besides Amazon Fire HD 6, this company also releases the refreshed version of last year’s Kindle Fire HD 7, which now carries the name Amazon Fire HD 7.

There’s actually the other 7-inch model available to buy on Amazon, but it’s still the same Kindle Fire HDX 7 released 2 years ago, without any upgrades and improvements, although it’s already an impressive device thanks to its 1080p display and Snapdragon 800 processor.

Amazon Fire HD 7, on the other hand, is the cheaper model of HDX 7. And similar just like the 6-inch sibling, this tablet will also carry the low price tag.

Interestingly, this also shares some similar specs just like the 6-inch model, like the same 720p resolution (but on a larger 7-inch screen), 2MP rear-facing camera and VGA front-facing shooter, 8 hours of battery life and not to mention, the same quad-core MediaTek processor.

Well, if you’re interested to learn more about this tablet, including my take on its gaming performance and how it handles some graphically demanding games, then here you go, my personal review of Amazon Fire HD 7.

Introduction

Amazon Fire HD 7 is basically just a blown up Amazon Fire HD 6.

And this is probably true because on paper, these 2 tablets share many similarities on many sectors here and there on the hardware and software.

First, this 7-inch tablet is sporting the same 720p display just like its sibling, although the 6-inch model has higher pixel density thanks to smaller screen size.

Amazon Fire HD 7 Review: The new refreshed model with much better hardware in its classIt goes the same with many parts of these tablets. They share the same quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 2MP rear-facing camera, VGA front-facing camera, 8 hours of promised battery life and they even look pretty similar in design.

They both use plastic matte finish on their rear-cover, plus some weird curved shapes all over the place, which interestingly feels really sturdy on hands and pretty convenient to hold even in very long hours.

Amazon Fire HD 7To be perfectly honest, I personally prefer the 6-inch model than Amazon Fire HD 7 especially because its display is much sharper than the 7-inch sibling.

And that’s possible because with the same 720p resolution, all the pixels are crammed into a much smaller display, resulting in higher pixel density than the 7-inch variant.

And it’s probably a lot better to use a smaller device because it will fit nicely into our pocket.

But the question remains, with all of the similar hardware and even design with its sibling,

Does Amazon Fire HD 7 have what it takes to be a great gaming device especially on today’s tablet market?

Does this tablet deserve to be positioned alongside other rivals on 7-inch tablet market?

Is it worth it to buy Amazon Fire HD 7 instead of the 6-inch model?

Well, hopefully we’re about to find out more about the answers of these questions at the end of this review. So be sure to stick around guys!

Design

On the sector of design, Amazon doesn’t make any complete overhaul on Amazon Fire HD 7. It basically looks similar with most of its new Fire lineup.

It’s made out of plastic matte finish, the bezels are pretty huge, the front side looks really clean that blends perfectly with the entire dark screen and UI.

So it looks really solid and elegant on the front side.

The good thing about this tablet is, despite using plastic matte finish material, according to Zdnet, the rear cover of this tablet still feels sturdy and solid on hands, plus convenient to hold even for longer reading or watching session.

Back to Top
  • No SIM
  • Released 2014, October
  • 290 g (Weight)
  • 7.0 inch 800 x 1280 pixels IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, (~216 ppi pixel density)
  • Android OS, v4.4 (KitKat - customized)
  • Dual-core 1.5 GHz & dual-core 1.2 GHz CPU
  • 1 GB RAM
  • Corning Gorilla Glass
  • - Fire OS 4 Sangria UI
  • Dolby Digital Plus sound enhancement
  • 2 MP rear-facing camera 1600 x 1200 pixels
  • VGA front-facing camera
  • No Memory Card slot
  • 8/16 GB
  • No GPRS
  • No EDGE
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth
  • microUSB v2.0 (SlimPort)
  • Accelerometer, gyro Sensors
  • No Radio
  • No GPS
  • No Java
  • Black, White, Cobalt, Magenta, Citron Colors
  • Up to 8 hours Talk time
As a $180 tablet, Amazon Fire HD 7 is actually not too shabby at all in terms of specs.

It has pretty sharp 720p resolution on its 7-inch IPS LCD display, a fast quad-core MediaTek processor (2-core CPU with 1.5GHz and 2-core CPU with 1.2GHz clock speed), 1GB of RAM, 2MP rear-facing camera, VGA front-facing camera, Fire OS 4.0, Sangria UI, 8 hours of promised battery life (talk time) and many other more.

However, if compared with other rivals that even cost lower at just $150 - like Asus MemoPad 7HD or HP Slate 7 Plus -, i think Amazon Fire HD 7 can be pretty hard to recommend especially for die-hard Android fans out there.

But even so, Amazon Fire HD 7 is still a pretty good quality tablet in $180 price range, not the best, but it’s still pretty good.

Screen

As the model name of this tablet suggests, Amazon Fire HD 7 is indeed sporting an HD resolution on its 7-inch display. This tablet actually shares the same 720p display just like its 6-inch sibling.

However, when it comes to sharpness, then the Amazon Fire HD 6 is definitely the one that takes the crown here because with that same 720p resolution, all of the pixels are crammed into a much smaller 6-inch display, thus resulting a much higher pixel density.

So reading books, browsing the web or watching movies definitely look much sharper on the 6-inch model than on this Amazon Fire 7HD.

But even so, both tablets are equally great and pretty sharp in screen department.

User Interface

This year, Amazon brings the new Sangria UI to all of its new Fire tablet lineup – from the Amazon Fire HD 6, Amazon Fire HD 7, Kindle Fire HDX 7, Amazon Fire HDX 8.9 and some other more.

But basically, this new UI still works and looks pretty much the same with the Mojito UI found on older-gen devices.

It’s still the simplified version of stock Android UI. It performs really fast and smooth, your contents will be straightly presented on the homescreen in icon-glider view and the navigation tabs are still there on the top, which will take you to the specific places where you can buy Amazon contents.

The great thing about this UI is, thanks to Amazon’s decision to strip down many of the standard features on stock Android, this tablet is capable to perform much even faster and smoother, plus more efficient in the use of battery and memory (RAM).

Back to Top
Amazon has been really consistent in delivering tablets that have a really smooth experience and simple-to-use UI. And that’s not stopping until now.

Amazon Fire HD 7 still inherits the legacy of the predecessors, but with a new build of UI named Sangria UI – as opposed to the Mojito UI on the previous-gen models.

Unlike other regular Android tablets out there, the UI of Amazon Fire HD 7 is the simplified version of stock Android UI.

So there’s no widget and there are many standard Android features that have been eliminated by Amazon on this device.

But this is actually a good thing. Not only does this simple UI make its performance much faster and smoother, but it’s also more efficient with the use of battery life.

So Amazon Fire HD 7 is capable to deliver you a really fast and smooth experience without draining too much energy from the battery.

Just like the 6-inch sibling, Amazon Fire HD 7 is also armed with the same quad-core processor made by MediaTek.

This quad-core processor actually kind of reminds me with the ‘octa-core’ of Samsung 5 Octa Exynos chipset, which has 4-core of CPU handling the heavy tasks, while the other 4-cores taking care of light-weight stuff.

And this is the same thing with quad-core processor embedded beneath this Amazon’s tablet. It has 2-set of CPU cores clocked at 1.5GHz, while the other 2-core CPU is set at lower 1.2GHz clock speed.

But in simple words, the performance of Amazon Fire HD 7 is really fast and smooth, plus everything about it is just pure simple.

The impressive thing about the hardware package that Amazon crams inside this tablet is actually its GPU power.

According to Amazon, the GPU of Amazon Fire HD 7 (along with its 6-inch sibling) is capable to deliver 3 times of graphical performance as Samsung GALAXY Tab 4 tablet.

However, as i mentioned in my previous review of Amazon Fire HD 6, i believe the Samsung GALAXY Tab 4 that Amazon is referring is the 7-inch model – not the 8-inch and 10.1-inch model – simply because these 8 and 10.1-inch models are equipped with a powerful Snapdragon 400 processor plus Adreno 305.

Meanwhile, the 7-inch is armed only with a lower-class Marvel SoC PXA1088, which is not on par with Snapdragon 400 in performance.

But even so, as a cheap budget tablet that costs around $184, i think this Amazon’s tablet is still pretty impressive though.

Besides, Amazon Fire HD 7 is mainly intended to use only as the device for doing some simple stuff, like reading books, watching HD movies, browsing the web, listening to music or playing some casual games.

So in terms of gaming performance, this tablet is definitely not going to be such a killer tablet.

The great thing is, even with that quad-core MediaTek processor, Amazon Fire HD 7 is still more than happier to execute some heavy performing games on Amazon App Store, like ShadowGun, Need for Speed Most Wanted or simple casual games like Angry Birds or Temple Run 2.

Anyway guys, if you want to know more about the gaming performance of Amazon Fire HD 7, including what games that will run on this tablet, check out my YouTube video playlist or Pinterest page. :)

Cameras

The other great thing found Amazon Fire HD 7 is definitely its rear-facing camera.

This feature actually has been lacking on some of older-gen Kindle Fire tablets, even the latest-gen Kindle Fire HDX 7 – which still has no rear-facing camera until now.

So this probably makes Amazon Fire HD 7 a bit better offering than Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7.

Its performance may not be on par with Kindle Fire HDX 7, however, it’s still great to see this tablet come with 2MP rear-facing camera and VGA front-facing shooter.

The quality is definitely not something to write home about, but at least, it still gets the job done and i believe the photos are still worth bragging in front of your Instagram or Twitter followers, right?

Battery Life

Similar just like the 6-inch model, Amazon Fire HD 7 comes with a promised 8 hours of battery life in talk time (multimedia).

With that same 8 hours battery life, I’m assuming that this device is equipped with a bigger battery capacity than the 6-inch model given its bigger screen size.

This 8 hour battery life can be believable probably because Amazon Fire HD 7 only comes with a medium-resolution 720p display, not to mention, its UI is also really simple and the processor is designed to be more efficient in squeezing the battery.

So basically, you can do a lot of things in one single day with this tablet – like for reading books/magazines, watching HD movies, browsing the web, listening to music, checking out stuff (your photos, etc) or even playing some games – of course on a full charge.

I believe its battery can be much improved further if you only use it to read books entirely, i mean, like long reading session in a full day.

However, if you’re a power user, you probably are required to recharge the device twice a day, especially if you’re doing some heavy stuff without resting the screen – like watching movies in marathon or playing games in the row.

My Personal Opinions

So in conclusion, i think Amazon Fire HD 7 can be a pretty good choice for you this holiday season, especially in $180 price range.

It has a pretty sharp 720p display, a fast quad-core processor, pretty good graphical performance, smooth experience thanks to simple UI, good battery life, huge catalog of contents on Amazon, complete set of cameras and pretty solid design – despite using plastic matte finish.

However, if compared to other rivals across the market, i think, as a $184 tablet, Amazon Fire HD 7 can be hard to recommend especially when other tablets have much better spec sheet than Amazon Fire HD 7.

For example, let’s take Asus MemoPad 7HD and HP Slate 7 Plus as an example.

Both devices have microSD card, 5MP rear-facing camera (that’s able to take decent quality shots by the way), 720p display, standard Android OS and UI and their gaming performance is definitely better than Amazon Fire HD 7.

HP Slate 7 Plus is equipped with Tegra 3 processor, while Asus MemoPad 7HD is armed with Mediatek quad-core MT8125 processor.

Not to mention, both tablets cost only $150, as opposed to the $184 price tag that Amazon puts on Amazon Fire HD 7.

But i think this will come down to your personal preference.

If you’re not a big fan of standard Android UI and you love being caged in Amazon ecosystem, then go ahead, Amazon Fire HD 7 is still a pretty good choice in that price range.

However, if you want a better tablet with better cameras, gaming performance, full-featured UI and cheaper cost, not to mention, the support of microSD card slot, then you might want to switch to either HP Slate 7 Plus or Asus MemoPad 7 HD (but i would go with HP’s tablet if i were you).

Anyway, to to end this review, i’ll try to answer some of the questions i’ve already asked previously above:

Does Amazon Fire HD 7 have what it takes to be a great gaming device on today’s tablet market?

No, i doubt it – Yes, Amazon may claim that the quad-core MediaTek processor inside Amazon Fire HD 7 is capable to deliver 3 times graphical performance as Samsung GALAXY Tab 4 (i’m assuming the 7-inch model).

However, that doesn’t mean that its gaming performance will be great especially compared to tougher rivals like HP Slate 7 Extreme, Google Nexus 7, HP Slate 7 Plus or even its own sibling – Kindle Fire HDX 7.

I still need to see some proofs with video reviews on YouTube in the near future. So you better stay tuned on this page to see my future updates about its gaming performance.

Does this tablet deserve to be positioned alongside other rivals on today’s tablet market?

Yes, but in low-end budget tablet market, not alongside other $200 tablets like HP Slate 7 Extreme, Google Nexus 7 (2013) or Kindle Fire HDX 7. These guys will crush Amazon Fire HD 7 on many sectors.

Is it worth it to buy Amazon Fire HD 7 instead of the 6-inch model?

Again, the decision to buy this tablet will come down to your personal preference.

If you love a simple-to-use tablet without some complicated learning curve, plus you want to be ‘caged’ in long term inside Amazon ecosystem, then go ahead, Amazon Fire HD 7 is still a pretty decent tablet in $180 price range.

On the other hand, if you’re a big fan of Android UI and all of its features, and you’re also looking for a tablet that has better gaming performance, better cameras and microSD card slot, then you might want to switch to other options.

You could try HP Slate 7 Plus or Asus MemoPad 7HD, which both cost only $150 but it already gained some good positive reviews from CNET and PhoneArena.

But if i were you, i would go with HP Slate 7 Plus because its gaming performance is more powerful.

Disclaimer: Hi guys, bear in mind that this is not some in-depth review. This is Read more...
Related Posts
Recent Updates
Copyright © 2017 GameTabletz.com. All Rights Reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part or in any form or medium without written permission is prohibited!
Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Tablet Reviews Disclaimer | Contact Us