Dell Streak 7 Android Tablet Review

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Display & Camera

The Streak 7 is equipped with both front and rear facing cameras. The rear camera is a 5 megapixel unit (2592x1944) with a single LED flash and autofocus. The front camera is a 1.3 megapixel (1280x960) fixed focus unit without flash. Both cameras can be used to capture stills and video. The Streak 7 uses the regular Android camera app and switching between the cameras is done with a single click in the camera app's menu.

 
Daylight: 1.3MP front-camera picture sample

Daylight: 5MP rear-camera picture sample

In a well-lit room, the camera is very responsive and smooth with excellent white balance. The two sample pictures above were taken in direct sunlight. The camera was smooth and the shutter was fast. Unfortunately the exposure metering algorithm made the pictures a bit on the dark side, despite it being a very bright scene.

In lower light levels the digital viewfinder is a bit jerky and pictures display noticeable artifacts. The two sample images below were captured in a dark room with a single light source (60W-equivalent fluorescent bulb). The camera took a bit longer to process the image, but the shutter was still acceptably quick. The exposure metering algorithm actually worked better here as these pictures look much brighter than the scene actually was.

Video capture quality was acceptable although the on-the-fly white balance and exposure metering left something to be desired. Video was often a bit on the dark side, as if the world was tinted.

 
Low-light: 1.3MP front-camera picture sample
 
Low-light: 5MP rear-camera picture sample

While the Streak 7's build quality is excellent and the camera is decent, the same cannot be said about its screen. The Dell Streak 7 has a conventional Twisted Nematic (TN) LCD panel and it's not a particularly good one. While the backlight is plenty bright, the viewing angles simply aren't up to par, even when compared to other TN panels. The screen really only looks uniform and correct when the Streak 7 is held in a landscape orientation. In a portrait orientation, the viewing angle issues become quite noticeable.

To make things worse, the Streak 7's screen has a rather sub-par 800x480 resolution. This isn't immediately noticeable and doesn't have nearly the same impact as the viewing angle issue. When viewing videos or browsing the web, the lower resolution becomes a notable disadvantage. Compare the Streak 7's resolution to the Apple iPad's 1024x768 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab's 1024x600 resolution. Next to the iPad's IPS panel, the Streak 7's screen is downright disappointing.

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