- Jamie Rigg , Engadget
Sony's Z3 Tablet Compact is a well-made, thin and light device with a stunning display, brisk performance and robust battery life.
- Incredibly thin and light
- Excellent battery life
- Snappy performance
- Water- and dust-proof
- PS4 connection feature laggy and often crashes
- Camera images lack detail and proper contrast
- Display colors oversaturated
While smartphones are getting bigger, the tablet manufacturers seem to be duking it out for the title of top mid-size tablet. Sony has entered the fray with the release of the Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. At first glance, it might not necessarily live up to its "compact" name, but once reviewers held it in their hand they understood why Sony tacked on the title. At 0.25 inches thick, it is one of the slimmest tablets available and it weighs only 270 grams. As well, the 16:10 aspect ratio allows it to be much narrower than its competition (the iPad Mini 3) and experts were able to hold it easily in one-hand. As thin and light as it is, critics did not experience any significant bending though CNET warns, "…it does feel a touch fragile." It does, however, have an IP65 and IP68 rating that makes it dust proof and waterproof for up to 30 minutes in up to six feet of water.
Dominating the front of the screen is the 8-inch full HD LCD display. Although it doesn't offer the same resolution or pixel density as the iPad Mini retina display or the LG G3, experts barely noticed any difference in sharpness. As well, they commend the screen for its good contrast and vivid colors though they mention that it tends to be a bit oversaturated. Brightness levels are also good as they were able to read the screen in bright light despite its high reflectivity.
Inside is a 2.5GHz quad-core processor paired with 3GB of RAM. This combination of hardware created a virtually stutter free experience for experts regardless of whether they were just browsing the web or playing graphics-intensive game. As thin as it is, Sony was able to stuff a 4,500mAh battery inside that get it running for around 13 hours in battery draining tests and a little under two days of light usage in real life testing. One of the more interesting features of the tablet is its ability to act as a display for the PlayStation 4. Unfortunately, when put to the test experts experienced frame rate issues, freezes and crashes. Still they add that the technology is still in early stages so they expect it to improve over time.
Sony isn't breaking the mold with their 8MP camera but it did reward experts with a solid performance. Performance-wise, they had no complaints as it provided fast and reliable picture taking and decent autofocus. Image quality, on the other hand, is fair at best. They noticed a lack of fine detail in images as well as problems with contrast, though surprisingly low light images were fairly clear when compared to similar low end cameras. Still, TechRadar states, "You're probably not going to want to frame any of these shots."
Overall, reviewers had few complaints about the Z3 Tablet Compact and would recommend it over its competitors despite its flaws. Stuff.TV states, "…the Z3 Tablet Compact is a lovely thing. It's a slim, light and reliable couch or commute companion."
Reviews (8.5/10 Avg. rating)
Excellent performance, fantastic build quality, and great added features
An elegant, well-equipped Android tablet that's hard to recommend
Outstanding multimedia experience at a price
Light in the hand, heavy on the wallet
Sony's Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is a lovely piece of hardware. It's light on flair, has a borderline-terrible camera, mediocre stereo speakers and a slightly tired Android build. On the flipside, though, it has a fantastic display (even if it is only a 1080p panel), outstanding performance and long battery life. Maybe I'm just boring, but the facet I like most is how thin and light the tablet is. I haven't really wanted for a new slate since I picked up a discounted OG iPad mini many moons ago. While I've been using the Z3 Tablet Compact, I've grown to adore how... compliant it i... Full review
Hardly any criticism
Sony really created a convincing device with the Xperia Z3 Compact. Only the case stability and the color accuracy of the panel are small issues. The latter is otherwise one of the best screens in this price range. Brightness, pixel density and contrast are on a really good level. The Japanese don't use the latest and fastest SoC, but they still equip the tablet with a really powerful SoC that can always utilize its full potential.
One thing that should be improved is the microphone. We also hope that the App2SD feature will be implemented with the update to Lollipop. However, th... Full review
Convincingly the most elegant and practical and waterproof body seen on mid-size tablets yet.
The Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is one of the best Android mid-size tablets currently available, and probably the best 8-inch tablet in general, even when the Apple iPad mini 3 is taken into account, as well as compact tablets with Windows. Its superiority is thanks to the exceptionally great processor, a fantastic design, which is convincingly the most elegant and practical (and waterproof) body seen on mid-size tablets yet.
The shortcomings are its low display resolution, as well as poor quality of the back camera and a high suggested price of $499.99. However, the positive feat... Full review
Has everything going for it
The Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is a small tablet with a big name, and a big win with only a few missteps. The primary one is price, and that’s the only I can’t seem to get over. It’s the right size, weight and thickness, and its performance is exemplary. It’s well-designed, portable and easy to use one-handed, but some of that gracefulness comes at the expense of battery life.
If and when the price declines — and the market indicates that it eventually must — the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact will be a must-buy for Android lovers. For now, though... Full review
Smaller but a worthy successor
Powerful, portable, pricey
Sony has made a play for portability with the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact and there's no denying that's been achieved, in spite of the bezel present at both ends. As a tablet to throw in a bag and take with you on the move, it gets the core design right.
It's well specified, with plenty of power, substantial endurance, waterproofing, and a display that can cope with brighter conditions (once you take control of its brightness settings). In that sense, there's little that the Z3 Tablet Compact won't do.
However, it is rather expensive. At £329 it's £90 more tha... Full review
A decent iPad mini and Galaxy Tab S rival
Darn, there are no reviews yet for this phone.
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