Is the Ativ Tab 7 (XE700T1C-K01US) a decent tablet?

Discussion in 'Samsung' started by YakaDaka, Feb 6, 2014.

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  1. YakaDaka

    YakaDaka Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I honestly never hear anyone talk about this nor recommend it. Maybe it has to do with the fact that there were tons of problems with these before the latest revision but still, I never see anyone recommending the latest version. To me, it seems like an SP2 with a slightly larger screen and an included keyboard dock so it doesn't seem like a bad deal if all the issues are no longer present. Otherwise, maybe it is due to the fact that people are waiting on a refresh of the Tab 7?
     
  2. Riyu

    Riyu Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Heh, I ended up ranting quite a bit on my experiences with the Tab 7. The TL;DR version is that the relatively short battery life (~6 hours), fans, heat and vents prevent the Tab from being a completely pleasant tablet experience that you can use without thinking about. I've also had a bad experience with the charger. However, drawing on it is lovely, even though the screen size is a bit squishy with menus up. As a laptop, it's not bad, but again the screen size is a bit small. The detachable keyboard can be a bit clunky for flipping back and forth from laptop to tablet - I wish there was a cover similar to the Surface type cover.

    Limitations and annoyances aside, it comes so close to being a can-do-it-all device. However, between the battery life, and PC software not being completely finger-friendly yet, it hasn't managed to make me completely forsake my iPad, which I still use for casual internet browsing and games. The iPad would probably get passed onto my sister if the tab had better battery life though ^^;.

    Samsung's customer service is the true killer though. Absolutely incompetent, and you get uselessly bounced back and forth between them and their subcontractor. I am extremely leery of every buying Samsung again, but the tab's nice enough when it works.

    The main attraction of it for me was the wacom digitiser in a portable tablet form, that I can also use as a laptop. Alas, the Wacom companion came out just that bit too late for me, and has even shorter battery life.
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    Things I really love about the Tab 7:
    ⦁ WACOM! Drawing on the screen with a stylus is a dream. In some ways the form factor even trumps drawing on a Cintiq (I've drawn on a friend's Cintiq for good periods of time) in that you can draw on your lap, and you can spin it like a piece of paper, and it's truly portable! I can put up with the poor edge accuracy for the overall dreamy drawing experience.
    ⦁ Built in pen - even though the pen is small, and I ended up getting a Bamboo stylus from wacom, it's very useful having the built in pen.
    ⦁ Front facing speakers.
    ⦁ Being able to switch from tablet to laptop modes quite easily.

    Things that are meh about the Tab 7:
    ⦁ Screen size. This is a trade off with weight I guess, but I find the 11.6' screen still a bit too squishy for working with. With program menus/pallettes up, you have a smaller than A5 size to actually use. I don't know how people manage with Surface tablets. However, the tablet is still big and unwieldy enough that you can't use it with one hand. The screen resolution is nice, and generally quite sharp looking, but can make some screen elements too small - changing the settings to blow up screen elements isn't a perfect solution either (programs get blurry, I've had the occasional game not full screen properly, and it can interact oddly with multi-touch.)
    ⦁ Button and port placement. Why, oh WHY did the designers put the autorotate button right next to the power button? I can't tell you how many times I've accidentally hit the power button when I was just trying to rotate... Putting the USB 3.0 port on the top of the tablet is pretty annoying as well - it leaves anything you connect to it hanging off in the way, particularly when the tablet's docked into the keyboard.
    ⦁ Hard drive size. I have the 125GB, and I have about 30GB free left currently. It's livable, but I have to backup a bit more vigilantly that I used to (my old laptop was 256GB).
    ⦁ The detachable keyboard means you have a quite clunky keyboard lying around when the tablet's detached. And it always seems to be at the other end of the house when I want to reattach it to type something. Also, it doesn't always connect properly; but once seated firmly in you can even pick it and the keyboard up together by the screen. The disconnect problems that plagued early models seem to have been mostly ironed out in the later versions.

    Things I HATE about the Tab 7:
    ⦁ Relatively short battery life. This is really the thing that kills using it as a tablet, frankly. I could put up with everything else if I could rely on the tab to work all day. I get on average about six hours per charge; less if I'm doing something demanding, or need to have the screen brightness turned up.
    ⦁ Heat, fans, and air vents are all a disincentive to use as a tablet, as it can be quite uncomfortable having in your lap, or handling period. (Although in winter it can be nice XD.) The vents also make me nervous about bringing it with me to the bathroom or kitchen, or chucking it into a bag to go places. The fan can be quite noisy when it does spin up, but it's generally quiet when on passive cooling. It can also get quite hot if you're using it while it's charging, or if you're making it work hard.
    ⦁ Weird software glitches - like occasionally my multi-touch will malfunction, and be offset a good two inches diagonally from where I'm actually touching, and the pop-up keyboard will depress j as well anything else I click (So if I'm trying to type "a" it actually types "aj"). There's also annoying little things like somtimes the orientation stays on portrait even when docked in horizontally to the keyboard when waking up from sleep or startup, so you have to click the autorotation button twice to reset it.
    ⦁ Delicate and fiddly charger. The tip you stick into the charging port is this narrow metal point. I actually had to exchange my first tab 7 in after about six-seven months because it stopped charging; I strongly suspect the charger had something to do with it, because the tip was starting to flex more and more. It also has this weird round thing about an inch of wire below where you stick it in the port, that is exceedingly annoying because it knocks against whatver your resting the computern on. It's especially bad compared to my previous laptop, a macbook pro. I miss apple's magsafe charger a lot because 1) someone trips over your cable, the magsafe falls harmlessly out. The Samsung one would take your laptop/tablet with it. 2) The Samsung one has an utterly useless light on the power block itself to show when it's connected to power point; there's no light to show that the charger is actually recharging your computer, like in the magsafe. There are lights on the edge of the keyboard and near the power button, but they shut off when the computer's put to sleep/turned off; good luck seeing if your tablet is actually charging if you plug it in while's it's off. This is particularly bad, as it's difficult to tell if the charger is actually seated all the way in; I've had times where it looked like it was, but actually wasn't charging.
    ⦁ Samsung's customer service. Like I said, my first tab had to be exchanged because it wouldn't charge properly so I sent it over to Samsung. Initially my experience with them was good; I could call on the weekend, and there wasn't too long a wait to actually speak to someone. It was also fairly easy getting my computer picked up. But then no one could tell me what was happening, or even give me an estimate as to when I'd get my tab back. It took about a month; I called about a couple times a week during that month, trying to get answers about what was actually happpening, and I think I got called back maybe once or twice only to be told they were still looking into it. I would get bounced between Samsung and their subcontractors (I'm in Australia) some jokers called Infinity. Even the day before I got it back, no one knew what was happening with it. ABOVE ALL, IT WAS STILL BROKEN WHEN THEY SENT IT BACK "FIXED".

    They told me to send it in again, but I was so frustrated at that stage I just went to where I bought it and exchanged it instead. (If you're wondering why I didn't do that to begin with, when I bought it the retailer said outside of three months from the purchase date to go to Samsung if something went wrong - yes, by law I could contest that, and did so successfully later on, but I thought I would try Samsung first. Biiiig mistake.) The only positive I can say about Samsung's customer service is that everyone was fairly polite, and wait times to speak to someone were never too long; it's just a shame they were all utterly incompetent at getting anything fixed.
     
  3. digisatman

    digisatman Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I nearly brought one over here in the UK for £630 on special offer on a website, the shop is selling off 256 of them , the A05 version. But opted for a dell pro 11, the samsung is nearly a 2 year old model when I thought about it.
     
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