The Yoga Tab 3 Pro takes the concept of Yoga Tab 2 Pro with a pico projector hidden in the structure, an integrated kickstand and more or less high-end components. Its screen IPS passes this time to a more contained size, 10.1 against 13.3 inches (25.6 cm against 33.8 cm) before and a definition that adds a few lines in height (2650 x 1440 px on the Tab 2 Pro and 2560 x 1600 px here, as for the Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet and Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5), an Intel Atom X5-Z8500 quad-core chip clocked at 1.44 GHz, accompanied by a 2 GB RAM and a storage capacity of 32 GB (only 22.2 GB accessible at startup) expandable by adding a microSD card.
It also features a 13 MP front-mounted photo-video sensor and a front-facing 5 megapixel sensor, Wi-Fi a / b / g / n / ac, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS with GLONASS and battery with a capacity of 10200 mAh. Everything is powered by Android 5.1 Lollipop that Lenovo covers a light home interface.
Lenovo retains the design and general lines that have made the Yoga Tab series a family of tablets apart. The manufacturer therefore always offers a relatively compact slate at the screen (occupancy rate of the front surface by the slab of 73%). Nevertheless, it is important to take into account the specificity of Yoga, namely its tubular base containing the battery, the rear photo-video sensor, a crutch and the pico-projector. This excrescence actually inflates the measurements of the slate and the screen thus occupies more than 67% of the front panel.
A tube that also affects the weight, which is significant on this product, with a scale that indicates 667 grams, more than 200 g more compared to an Apple iPad Air 2, a Xperia Z4 Tablet or a Galaxy Tab S 10.5. The tube still offers an excellent grip of the product in portrait mode since it serves as a similar handle. For the web, a vertical game (like Candy Crush ) or an e-book, it can do the trick.
Where Lenovo does not deceive his world is the quality of the finishes of the machine. We are clearly in the top of the range, with a solid aluminum shell and a leather-like coating on one part of the back and one of the most attractive on the market. The hinge of the crutch is solid and the crutch can print several different positions. A small snap comes just out of his home or ensure its storage. Accompanied by a wireless keyboard, this Tab 3 Pro can be turned into a beautiful tool to send e-mails or tap a few kilometers of lines of text.
Just because the Tab 3 pro incorporates a video projector does not mean that Lenovo has neglected the screen. The 10.1-inch IPS panel quietly ranks among the best displays on the market. Its WQXGA definition (2560 x 1600 px) allows it to display a comfortable 299 pixels per inch, similar to what is found on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 and slightly in front of the Apple iPad Air 2 . This gives it a comfort of reading and certain use for any type of content, text, photo, as video.
Under our probe, the tablet reveals results of excellent quality: delta E average to 3.1 ensuring a color reproduction very close to natural tones, contrast at 1256: 1 slightly lower than what Apple offers on the iPad or Google with its Pixel C, but in a very reasonable average nowadays for IPS, and a maximum brightness reaching 430 cd / m². Everything is combined with a 14% overall screen reflection rate and ensures good readability under most conditions. In terms of tactile responsiveness of the slab, Lenovo does not succeed in its huge gamble of the Yoga Tab 2 Pro and its 14 ms of tactile delay – one of the records of the sector – since the Tab 3 Pro displays a delay of 90 ms and a time Latency of 26 ms. Average in the lower soft belly of the IPS market.
See below in our box to discover what are all the relative qualities of the video projection mode display.
INTERFACE AND NAVIGATION 4/5
Shoulder change for Lenovo’s software rifle. The interface for Android without application menu (with all the apps on many home pages, such as iOS or Huawei’s EMUI) and loaded with home software gives way to a small overlay of Android 5.1 Lollipop that finds a more classic operation, with its general drawer of apps, no duplication in the use shortcuts or gestures and more fluency in use.
The Yoga Tab 3 Pro offers the basic Google suite (YouTube, Gmail, Hangouts, Drive, Play Store …) and reminiscent of Lenovo tools, including an average application for direct note-taking on the screen, another of content sharing between branded products using this single bias or a management of memory locally and in the cloud via the space offered by Lenovo. The Projection app only groups multimedia contents to project (images, videos, working documents) by type.
Too bad that, basically, the side “Pro” is finally embodied for Lenovo in the ability to project a Word doc meeting room (no screen sharing, for example). The performance of the Intel x5 platform opens the way to a global fluidity in all uses. Nevertheless, it would have been better to insert 1 GB of RAM extra to provide better support when a host of apps are open (traffic jams and micro-slowdowns).
Taken largely for video, the Yoga Tab 3 pro does not disappoint. The tablet knows how to swallow most mobile codecs without any problem, whether in 720p or 1080p. In addition, the dedicated video application includes advanced features such as image capture, playlist, and windowing.
The headphone output of the Lenovo tablet lacks some power. This does not benefit the distortion that remains a little too high in the last steps of the volume. And if the dynamic range is very wide, the stereophony, it is very narrow. Care should be taken to turn off the Dolby Equalizer, which, as so often, virtually or completely annihilates the intrinsic sound qualities despite various spatialization attempts.
The speaker strip underneath the screen offers a rather good rendering of the spectrum, even if there are climbs in the treble a little aggressive.
Unfortunately, the Yoga Tab 3 Pro is not really an ideal playing machine. Its size and uneven weight make it a bit difficult to grip. But most importantly, the Intel chip fails to keep pace. If the tablet manages to run most of the titles of the Play Store, a game like Real Racing 3 sacrifices a good part of the graphic effects and does not manage to ensure perfect fluidity end-to-end. By the time Acer and its Predator 8 play the high end with the Intel x7 chip, it is a pity that Lenovo has opted for a mid-range platform that does not fully satisfy the total multimedia appetite and without constraints .
Unlike many other large tablets on the market, the Yoga Tab 3 Pro enjoys a decent quality camera. By shipping a sensor 13 Mpx, Lenovo plays a little in the race for numbers, but here it pays. If ergonomically the photographic exercise proves far from being easy, it turns out to be rich in details and profits from a natural and balanced rendering when one manages to capture a cliche.
The slate of Lenovo manages to do a little better than the iPad Air 2, so far queen in the area of tablet photography. Even in low light, if the focus a little more trouble to make the scene remains legible and it avoids the presence of excessive and visible digital noise.
Unfortunately, if the front and rear sensors could claim a fifth star in their category, the highly questionable ergonomics caps them to a star of total success. The rear sensor located at the end of the cylinder requires to take the shelf upside down to fit neatly. The front sensor, almost more important, is located on the side edge, forcing the tablet to be held in portrait mode to frame the subject. A strange choice as both the landscape mode and the tilting foot seemed intended to provide comfortable video conferencing.
With a high definition screen and a built-in pico projector, Lenovo had to embark on its Tab 3 Pro a battery that can hold the shot, and it’s about done. The huge battery of 10 200 mAh allows to use the tablet 2 days whole without flinching. We would have liked to shoot a little more, but it’s the price to pay for such a screen. Be careful, however, the use of the projector is not soft with the battery, as we emphasize in our box.
In streaming video via Netflix, the tablet runs out of steam after a little more than 10 hours. A good score, almost equal to that of the iPad Air 2 . It will take, with the original charger, around 2h40 to recharge the device up to 100% after a power failure.
Beyond the differentiating criterion and the marketing argument, what is really worth the integrated projector to the Yoga Tab 3 Pro? We spent the tablet on our test bench dedicated to video projectors to know a little more.
A few technical details in the first place: the pico projector integrated in the Lenovo tablet is able to project an image of 854 x 480 px with a supposed luminous power of 50 lumens. The manufacturer also boasts the ability to project an image up to 170 cm diagonal (a screen of 70 inches).
In fact, with a decline of 3 meters and an image of 2 meters base, the tablet offers a brightness of 3 cd / m² and a starved contrast of 79: 1. As far as color fidelity is concerned, the report is not much more pleasing since we reach a delta E of 13.2. Fortunately, the temperature is near perfect (6406 K).
The results are therefore far from brilliant and far removed from what can be produced by dedicated “pico” devices ( Vivitek Qumi, for example). However, the use is obviously not the same. In quick and easy booster projection system, the Tab 3 Pro does an honest job, the colors are certainly far from natural and the definition a little poor, but to quickly enjoy a video to several or present a slideshow , the result remains acceptable and practical. Another use that has also found our preference quite subjective: in bed with a movie or a game – and a Bluetooth controller so – in projection on the ceiling. Whatever happens, it is only in total darkness or almost that the Tab 3 Pro can pull out of the game. On the other hand, it is necessary to count on numerous halos of light all around the maximum frame of projection.
Note also that the positioning of the projector, slightly offset from the center of the cylinder, is much smarter and ergonomic than that of the 1st generation which was at the end of the tube and therefore a real hell ergonomic. Be careful not to put your fingers on it. Finally, the automatic keystone correction, if not new, has greatly improved and is effective, in addition to being fast, while the manipulation of the focus is no longer manual but electronic via a graduated touch wheel finally more accurate than the knob of the Tab 2 Pro.
Last but not least, the projection function is very energy intensive, about 10% of battery use or sometimes a little more in 20 minutes on multimedia (gaming, online video or local), which often comes back to enjoy a series or a movie for a little less than 3:30. One more sign that the function remains for extra use and not really cut for long movie sessions, unless connected to the power.