Dell Venue 8 7000 Tablet (Review): Getting A RealSense

Introduction & Specifications

Take everything you know and expect from an Android tablet, crumple it into a ball, and throw it away. Done? Good -- none of what you just purged from your brain will do you any good when looking at the Venue 8 7000 from Dell. It's not heavily modified and tied to an online shopping experience like Amazon's Fire tablets, nor does it take a barebones approach like the defunct Nexus 7 from Google. The Venue 8 7000 doesn't even flex an ARM processor.

So now that you know what Dell's latest Android tablet doesn't have, let's spend a few moments talking about exactly what it is. For one, it's the world's thinnest tablet, measuring a mere 6 millimeters thick, or 0.24 inches and change if you're staunchly opposed to the metric system. That's 0.1mm slimmer than Apple's iPad Air 2 and 1.5mm flatter than the iPad mini 3, giving Dell full bragging rights, even if by a hair.

Dell Venue 8 7000 Stock

Part of the reason Dell was able to build such a thin slate is because it opted for an Intel Atom Z3580 processor clocked at up to 2.3GHz. This quad-core part is built on a 22nm manufacturing process and is based on Intel's Moorefield microarchitecture. Compared to its Bay Trail predecessor, Moorefield comes in a smaller chip package with superior thermal attributes, thus allowing for slimmer designs.

The slim form factor isn't the only thing that stands out about the Venue 8 7000. It also features one of the best displays on the market, an 8.4-inch OLED infinity edge-to-edge panel with a 2560x1600 resolution, and is the first to integrate Intel's RealSense Snapshot Depth Camera. Toss in premium build quality, front-firing stereo speakers, and things like Miracast support, and what you end up with is a high-end Android slate with far more features than most in its category.

We'll cover these features in finer detail, but before we dive in, here's a look at the full spec sheet...

Dell Venue 8 7000
Specifications & Features
  • Android 4.4 KitKat
  • Intel Atom Z3580 (up to 2.3GHz, Quad Core) based on Moorefield
  • Intel HD Graphics (Imagination PowerVR G6430)
  • 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM
  • 16GB eMMC
  • Intel 7260 802.11ac 1x1 Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.0
  • 8.4 inch OLED, 2560x1600, 361ppi
  • 10-point capacitive multi-touch
  • Front Camera: 2MP
  • Rear Camera: 8MP w/ 2 720p cameras for depth (Intel RealSense)
  • Headphone/microphone combo jack
  • USB 2.0 (micro-B connector)
  • Micro-SD card reader
  • Sensors: Ambient light sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, GPS (4G)
  • Front-firing stereo speakers with MaxxAudio Waves tuning
  • 5900mAh / 21WHr - 10h of battery life
  • Machined aluminum 6000 series with thermoplastic engineering polymer resin
  • Miracast support
  • 8.5" x 4.89" x 0.24" (215.8mm x 124.4mm x 6mm)
  • 0.67 pounds (306 grams)
  • 1 year warranty
 Dell Venue 8 7000

      We covered some of the highlights above, but in addition to those bits, Dell fleshed the Venue 8 7000 out with 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM, 16GB of internal storage that's expandable via microSD, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, and a spattering of other features.

      Interestingly, Dell doesn't offer any storage upgrade options -- it's 16GB or bust, though as mentioned, you can supplement the built-in storage with a microSD card (or take things to the cloud). You might have also noticed that it ships with Android 4.4 KitKat instead of Android 5.0 Lollipop. We'd be surprised if Dell didn't dole out a Lollipop update sometime this year, but for now, you'll have to crunch on KitKat.

      A look at the pricing breakdown puts the Venue 8 7000 in top-shelf territory. That may seem like a tough ask compared to budget priced Android slates like the Fire HD 7, but it's not really fair to compare the two. For a better comparison, you'd have to hop over to iOS territory and pit the iPad mini 3 against the Venue 8 7000, the latter of which sports several advantages for the same price -- it's thinner, faster, has a slightly bigger display with a higher resolution, and is equipped with better cameras.

      The real story here, however, is in the design and unique features. Let's have a look.        

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