Google Nexus 7 (2013 Edition) vs HP Slate8 Pro: The Rivalry of Two Great Gaming Tablets

Posted by B. Johnson
February 29, 2016 | 0 comments
 Google Nexus 7 (2013 Edition) vs HP Slate8 Pro: The Rivalry of Two Great Gaming TabletsA few days ago, one of my comparisons involved the first-generation Google Nexus 7 and HP Slate8 Pro. As a result, of course HP Slate8 Pro came out proudly as the winner there in that review against Google’s tablet.

And this is not quite shocking given that HP’s 8-inch tablet is rocking the Tegra 4 processor as opposed to the older-gen Tegra 3 quad-core processor found inside Google Nexus 7 (2012), which obviously is less powerful than the newer-gen Tegra 4.

I’m not saying that Google Nexus 7 with its Tegra 3 is not powerful for gaming, which is totally wrong because this processor is still capable to execute many heavy and high-performing games perfectly even in full graphics.

However, when put side-by-side on the same tablet with HP Slate8 Pro, of course this Google’s tablet looks inferior compared to HP’s device, especially in terms of spec sheet and of course gaming performance.

Anyway, today, I’m still interested to bring up HP Slate8 Pro again into my next comparison review against Google Nexus 7. But of course, the Nexus 7 tablet I’m referring right now is no other than the second-gen model (with Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset, not Tegra 3).

Google Nexus 7 (2013 Edition) vs HP Slate8 Pro benchmarks and gaming performance

I think the comparison between these 2 devices would be really interesting to see especially given that the second-gen Google Nexus 7 now brings a lot of improvements than predecessor, which automatically makes this device on the same level with HP Slate8 Pro.

Well, if you’re also interested to see how this comparison goes and find out which one is the winner here in this review, then without further ado, here’s my comparison review between Google Nexus 7 (2013 edition) and HP Slate8 Pro.

Enjoy!

Introduction

The first time I became a big fan of HP’s tablets was actually when I found out that HP was one of the manufacturers that decided to ‘remake’ Nvidia Tegra Note with its own branding through HP Slate7 Extreme.

And I already feel in love with Nvidia Tegra Note ever since Nvidia showed off a lot of great things about this tablet; like its powerful performance, awesome design, great sound quality, decent cameras and of course, an amazing digital pen (stylus).

Since then, I became a huge fan of HP with its tablets especially because some of its latest tablets (under ‘Slate’ series) in 2013 were powered by Nvidia’s mobile processors, Tegra 3 and Tegra 4.

And you know how amazed I’ve always been with Tegra processors from Nvidia with their powerful graphical performances, especially for gaming.

So no wonder if HP Slate8 Pro was also my other favorite HP tablet besides HP Slate7 Extreme, mostly thanks to its powerful Tegra 4 processor.

The gaming performance of HP Slate8 Pro is undoubtedly really amazing as it handles any heavy Android games that you see today on the market in lag-free performance, like Modern Combat 5, Asphalt 8: Airborne and even GTA San Andreas.

On the other hand with HP Slate8 Pro, the Nexus 7 tablet from Google, the second-gen model, is also really impressive in many ways. And as the ‘successor’ model, of course this 2013 edition of Google Nexus 7 brings a lot of improvements here and there compared to predecessor.

It FINALLY has a rear-facing camera, a more reliable performance, newer Android software, bigger RAM, a much sharper display, a better build quality and of course a far better gaming performance than predecessor. So yes – the second-gen Google Nexus 7 has all of that in its package.

But the questions remain. With all of the great things found on both tablets, especially compared to their siblings:

Which one between Google Nexus 7 (2013) and HP Slate8 Pro that has what it takes to be the best gaming tablet in this comparison review?

Which one is the better tablet in the whole aspect?

Is it worth it right now to buy any of these devices, especially if you love playing games?

Well, soon we’ll find out more about the conclusion of this review along with the answers of these questions right at the end of this article. So be sure to stick around!

Design

From design standpoint, I think HP Slate8 Pro looks kind of similar with iPad mini. And that’s clearly because this HP’s tablet uses the same 3:4 aspect ratio on its 8-inch screen just like what Apple adopts on its mini iPad.

So technically, the screen of HP Slate8 Pro looks wider horizontally than Google Nexus 7 with its slimmer 16:9 aspect ratio.

Meanwhile, the design of Google Nexus 7 actually is not majorly improved by the manufacturer, or in this case, Asus (and Google?).

So just like the predecessor, the overall look of second-gen Google Nexus 7 is not a huge departure from the first-gen Google Nexus 7 released in 2012.

They both have thick bezels on top and bottom, while the left and right bezels are made so thin around the screen. Not to mention, the rounded rectangular corners of first-gen Google Nexus 7 are still there on the second-gen Google Nexus 7.

So basically, they look pretty much the same one to another, although its build quality gets much improved on the second-gen model.

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Google Nexus 7 (2013 Edition)HP Slate8 Pro
4G LTE Micro-SIM
Released in July 2013
7.0 inch LED-backlit IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 1200 x 1920 pixels (~323 ppi pixel density)
Quad-core 1.5 GHz Krait Qualcomm Snapdragon S4Pro Chipset
Adreno 320 GPU
2 GB RAM
Android OS 4.3 Jelly Bean, upgradable to Lollipop
5 MP rear-facing camera
1.2 MP front-facing camera
No Memory Card slot
16/32 GB Internal storage
GPRS
EDGE
NFC
GPS
HSPA+, LTE
Wi-Fi 802.11
Bluetooth v4.0
microUSB v2.0 (SlimPort)
No Radio
Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass Sensors
No Java
Non-removable Li-Ion 3950 mAh battery
Up to 9 h (multimedia) Talk time
Released in 2013 December
8.0 inch Capacitive touchscreen, 1200 x 1600 pixels, (~250 ppi pixel density)
Android OS, 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
Nvidia Tegra 4 Quad-core 1.8 GHz Cortex-A15 CPU
8 MP Camera with LED flash
External storage via microSD card slot for up to 32 GB
16 GB Internal storage
1 GB RAM
Bluetooth
USB
No SIM
No EDGE
No Data
GPRS
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band
No Radio
GPS
Java
Beats Audio sound enhancement
Non-removable Li-Po 5680 mAh battery
Up to 11 hours 30 min (multimedia) Talk time

Screen

Google Nexus 7 is blessed with a full HD 1080p resolution display, while HP Slate8 Pro looks more humble in this review with a slightly lower resolution screen (1200x1600 pixels VS 1200x1920 pixels on Google Nexus 7).

So when it comes to sharpness, of course Google Nexus 7 has the edge here against HP Slate8 Pro.

However, the experience of enjoying media contents like movies, books or web pages is actually more pleasing to do on HP Slate8 Pro because this device adopts the 4:3 screen aspect ratio, which is similar just like on the iPad mini.

So the screen real estate of HP Slate8 Pro is wider horizontally and it makes it more comfortable to use than Google Nexus 7 either for reading books, browsing the web or watching movies in landscape mode.

But even so, both Google Nexus 7 and HP Slate8 Pro have relatively sharp and gorgeous looking displays. So you won’t make any mistake if you pick any of these tablets.

They look insanely sharp, the colors look nice and everything is really crisp on the screens of both devices.

User Interface

On the software side, both Google Nexus 7 and HP Slate 8 Pro come pre-installed with pure stock Android UI, with both getting the newer build of Android Jelly Bean.

So basically, all of the standard features of Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, as well as the homescreen layouts, features and visual interfaces of both devices are pretty much the same.

However, as HP’s tablet, of course, there are some extra pre-loaded apps related to the specific service from this manufacturer, like HP printer app, etc.

The great thing of using stock Android UI without any customizations is, not only does this make both tablets perform much faster and smoother, but they’re also more efficient with the use of memory (RAM) and battery.

So no wonder if Google Nexus 7 and HP Slate8 Pro have relatively pretty solid battery lives.

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Gaming Performance
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The first time Google debuted its first-gen Nexus 7 in 2012, this tech giant made it clear that its Google Nexus 7 was a great gaming tablet.

And that could be seen perfectly when Google announced this tablet and showed off the superiority of its gaming performance in front of the audience at Google I/O conference in 2012.

A year later in 2013, Google was back again in business by unleashing the second-generation of Google Nexus 7, which brought a lot of improvements here and there both in software and hardware.

And similar just like the predecessor, the second-generation Google Nexus 7 was also intended by Google as a gaming tablet.

There are many awesome 3D games, which I’ve seen a lot on YouTube, that have been tested to work perfectly on this device, from Modern Combat 4, Dead Trigger 2, GTA Vice City, Need for Speed Most Wanted, NOVA 3 and even Asphalt 8: Airborne, which all of these games are really heavy in terms of graphics and visual effects.

And as the newer and refined version from the predecessor, of course Google Nexus 7 is more than capable to ‘swallow’ all of aforementioned games above perfectly and smoothly without any lag whatsoever. And yes, all of them are running in full highest graphics.

This is actually not quite surprising for me because this Google Nexus 7 is powered by a Snapdragon S4 Pro quad-core processor, coupled with Adreno 320 GPU, which were considered as powerful in 2013.

And thanks to Asus for its generosity to provide huge 2GB of RAM on this tablet, Google Nexus 7 has no problem at all to execute many tasks at once in smooth lag-free performance, including games.

Unfortunately, despite having great performance for gaming, there are still some flaws to be found on this Google’s second-gen Nexus 7 tablet.

And its flaws start occurring when this tablet is thrown with 1 heavy game from Rockstar Games, GTA San Andreas.

Okay, Google Nexus 7 may perform well when handling Asphalt 8: Airborne, even in full highest graphics.

But the degradation of its performance will become obvious to see when this tablet tries to handle GTA San Andreas in full highest graphics (with maximum draw distance, resolution, shadows, effects, etc).

It runs really laggy on this Google Nexus 7 and there’s huge amount of choppiness all over the gameplay, which is quite annoying for gamers that want to enjoy the full experience of this game in highest graphics.

Fortunately though, this GTA San Andreas provides users the options to set some specific parts of the game’s graphics to lower level. And this can be the best solution if you want to play GTA San Andreas on this second-gen Google Nexus 7.

But the story is totally different here with HP Slate8 Pro.

Unlike Google Nexus 7 that really suffers a lot to perform well when handling GTA San Andreas in highest graphics, HP Slate8 Pro seems to enjoy the smooth and lag-free performance when executing this huge-scaled game even at its full potential of graphics.

I think this is as expected because HP Slate8 Pro is equipped with one of the most powerful processors on the market even until now, Tegra 4 processor.

And the fact that this processor comes with a staggering 72-core GPU also makes it even more obvious to see how superior this tablet really is especially in handling heavy games.

Besides playing GTA San Andreas in ‘perfect’ smooth performance, this HP Slate8 Pro is also more than capable to handle any heavy games either on Android or even PSP platforms.

So from games like Modern Combat 5, Asphalt 8: Airborne, GTA Vice City, NOVA 3 and even PSP games like Prince of Persia: Rival Swords or PES 2015, all of them will surely run perfectly on HP Slate8 Pro with no lag whatsoever.

And I also found out that Tegra 4 tablets like HP Slate8 Pro, surprisingly can also handle Tegra K1 titles like Half Life 2, Portal, Oddworld: Stranger’s Wrath and other Tegra K1 games that you can find on Nvidia Game Hub (Nvidia app/game store).

And thisi means, you don’t have to buy Nvidia Shield Tablet in order to play Tegra K1 games like Half Life 2 or Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath. Any Tegra-4-powered tablets like HP Slate8 Pro will do the job perfectly for you.

So basically, with HP Slate8 Pro, you can literally throw any games, either from Android or PSP platform, even some of Tegra K1 games, and this tablet will be more than happier to execute all of them perfectly and smoothly even in full highest graphics.

Between the 2, of course I will side on HP Slata8 Pro given how powerful it really is to handle any games from many platforms (Android, Tegra K1 or PSP). I’m not saying that Google Nexus 7 is not a great gaming tablet.

But if compared with HP’s tablet, of course Google Nexus 7 is not on the same level of gaming performance with HP Slate8 Pro. Plus, it also suffers to perform smoothly when handling GTA San Andreas in full graphics.

However, as a Tegra 4 tablet, HP Slate8 Pro also has its own flaw especially compared with Google Nexus 7.

So just like any other Tegra 4 tablets, HP Slate8 Pro is also plagued with overheating issue. This actually can also happen to majority of smartphones and tablets, even the iPad.

But the overheating issues on Tegra 4 tablets like HP Slate8 Pro is probably much even worse than any other non-Tegra-4 tablets out there.

So basically, everytime you throw heavy tasks on this tablet, especially heavy games, the rear-side gets hot easily and this really ruins the experience of playing games on this device.

Fortunately, that problem can be tackled by using an extra rubber case that you can wrap up around this tablet.

So it will prevent your bare hands from touching directly on the rear-side of this device when it gets warmer and even hotter, especially when playing games.

But apart from that, HP Slate8 Pro is still one of the best gaming tablets that you can find on the market right now. And last time I heard, you can grab this tablet at really cheap price point, around $125 at Amazon.

Anyway guys, if you want to know more about their gaming performances, including what games that will run on these tablets, check out my YouTube video playlist or Pinterest page. :)

Cameras

One of the things that gets majorly revamped on Google Nexus 7 is definitely its rear camera. So on the first-gen Google Nexus 7, there’s no rear-facing camera found on this device. And Google as well as Asus answer its ‘flaw’ by bringing 5MP camera on the back of second-gen Google Nexus 7.

Unfortunately, based on what I’ve heard from MKBHD and theVerge on YouTube, the rear-facing 5MP camera on Google Nexus 7 has nothing special to write home about here, especially in terms of sharpness and overall quality as well.

And it also has no LED flash either, so it’s probably not really ideal to take photos or record videos with this tablet in low-light conditions at night.

This is the opposite with HP Slate8 Pro.

As one of the flagship models in HP’s tablet lineup in 2013, HP Slate8 Pro is equipped with an 8MP rear-facing camera as well as a front-facing snapper to do selfies or video calls.

Not to mention, there’s also LED flash on this device, which enables you to take photos or record videos even when there’s no significant light around you.

To be honest, I haven’t seen any photos or videos taken with the rear camera of HP Slate8 Pro, so I have nothing to share here in this regard.

However, given its higher megapixel count (although I know that megapixel count doesn’t contribute to picture quality), plus, I have seen how great the cameras of its sibling (HP Slate7 Extreme), so I believe you can count on HP Slate8 Pro to take decent quality shots with its 8MP rear-camera.

Besides, this tablet is made by HP and we all know that this manufacturer has years of experience and expertise to create good all-around products for the past couple of years. So I believe the cameras of HP Slate8 Pro are not going to disappoint you.

But of course, you cannot expect the photos or videos taken with this tablet to be as great and sharp as the cameras of other flagship tablets like iPad mini or Samsung GALAXY Tab S 8.4, because that’s not going to happen.

Battery Life

Besides having powerful gaming performance and pretty good quality cameras, there’s also one other thing that definitely makes this HP Slate8 Pro tablet an appealing tablet for you. And that is its solid battery life.

So according to various sources, HP Slate8 Pro, with its 5680mAh battery is capable to survive in really comfortable 11 hours and 30 minutes of ‘screen on time’ for doing video playback or watching movies entirely.

And this can be considered as really great and even top notch because HP Slate8 Pro is equipped with some power-hungry hardware, from its Tegra 4 processor to its high-resolution display.

So basically, with that type longevity of battery life, this tablet could get you through the day without having to recharge it twice in during the day, even if you use it mainly to do some heavy stuff.

And I also believe that its battery life is more than ideal for playing heavy games.

The same story repeats as well to Google Nexus 7.

So based on some random sources that I stumbled upon across the net, this Google’s tablet is capable to survive very long when it comes to battery life, reaching over 8 hours and 40 minutes for moderate use.

Even though this tablet is not as impressive as HP Slate8 Pro in battery life, its achievement is still appreciated here because this Google’s tablet is sporting a higher-resolution screen than the one found on HP Slate8 Pro (1200x1920 pixels VS 1200x1600 pixels).

Besides, Google Nexus 7 is powered by a smaller capacity of battery (3950mAh) compared to the 5680mAh battery found inside HP’s tablet and even 4325mAh battery of its predecessor, yet it still lasts much longer than the previous-gen Google Nexus 7.

So kudos to Asus and Google (not to mention, Qualcomm for its Snapdragon processor) for doing a great job in improving the battery life of Google Nexus 7 over its predecessor even with a smaller battery capacity!

My Personal Opinions

So in conclusion, from all of the aspects of each tablet, I’ve got to say that, between the 2, I think HP Slate8 Pro has the edge here in this comparison review against Google Nexus 7.

And this means, Google Nexus 7 comes in the second place with HP Slate8 Pro coming out as the clear winner in this review.

This conclusion is actually not very hard to take and even very obvious to see because HP Slate8 Pro ticks all of the requirements of a great gaming and media-consumption tablet.

I’m not saying that Google Nexus 7 is not a great media-consumption and gaming tablet. But when compared with this HP’s tablet side-by-side, HP Slate8 Pro is definitely a much better option here than Google Nexus 7.

Okay, this HP’s tablet may only have 1GB of RAM and a slightly lower-resolution screen compared to Google Nexus 7 (1200x1600 pixels VS 1200x1920 pixels).

However, HP Slate8 Pro has a more powerful gaming performance (thanks to Tegra 4 and its 72-core GPU), longer battery life and of course, a higher more reliable 8MP rear-facing camera than the ones found on Google Nexus 7.

Not to mention, there’s also microSD card slot available on HP Slate8 Pro, which none to be found on Google Nexus 7.

So not only can you fill this tablet with a lot of media contents, but you can also install as many games as you want without deleting the existing ones on this device.

And this really helps a lot in making HP Slate8 Pro a much better gaming tablet than Google Nexus 7.

Even so, Google Nexus 7 is still a decent quality device in low price range. It’s got a super sharp full HD 1080p display, 2GB of RAM, pretty great gaming performance, 5MP rear-facing camera, attractive design and solid battery life.

But of course, if you’re looking for a great and powerful gaming tablet either to play Android, PSP or even Tegra K1 games, then HP Slate8 Pro is definitely the right destination for you.

Anyway, to end this review, I’ll try to answer some of the questions I’ve previously asked above.

Which one between Google Nexus 7 (2013) and HP Slate8 Pro that has what it takes to be the best gaming tablet in this comparison review?

As mentioned above, it’s definitely HP Slate8 Pro.

Compared to Google Nexus 7, this HP’s device is just way more powerful to handle heavy games.

And it's also got microSD card slot for up to 64GB. So you can literally install as many games as you want on this HP's device without deleting you existing media contents or apps.

Which one is the better tablet in the whole aspect?

I think HP Slate8 Pro is also a much better tablet than Google Nexus 7 in the whole aspect. Okay, I know that this HP’s tablet has a slightly lower-resolution screen and lower capacity of RAM than Google Nexus 7.

But HP Slate8 Pro has a lot more things to offer than Google Nexus 7, from its powerful gaming performance, longer battery life, better rear-facing camera and of course, microSD card slot (which cannot be found on Google Nexus 7)

Is it worth now right now to buy any of these devices, especially if you love playing games?

It’s definitely worth it but only if you buy HP Slate8 Pro instead of Google Nexus 7.

I’m not saying that Google’s tablet is not powerful for gaming. But if pitted side-by-side with HP Slate8 Pro, then we can clearly see the difference of gaming performance of both tablets, with HP Slate8 Pro being the more powerful one in this review.

Pros and Cons

Google Nexus 7

Pros:
  • Powerful to run heavy 3D games
  • a 5MP rear-facing camera, which cannot be found on its predecessor
  • super-sharp 1080p display
  • solid battery life
  • newer Android build and future updates from Google
  • huge 2GB of RAM
  • Stock Android UI makes it faster and smoother, plus efficient with RAM and battery
Cons:
  • It has NO microSD card slot
  • Its rear-facing camera lacks of sharpness and overall quality
  • It suffers a lot to handle GTA San Andreas in full graphics
  • its rear-facing camera has NO LED flash

HP Slate8 Pro

Pros:
  • There’s microSD card slot for expandable storage
  • Insanely powerful for playing heavy 3D games
  • great quality cameras
  • LED flash for taking low-light photos
  • Solid battery life
  • high-resolution display (almost full HD resolution)
  • Stock Android UI
  • Capable to play not only Android games, but also PSP and even Tegra K1 games
  • great aspect ratio on its screen, just like iPad mini
Cons:
  • It only has 1GB of RAM
  • it probably has overheating issues
  • there’s no digital pen just like its Tegra 4 sibling, HP Slate7 Extreme


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