When selecting Android tablets, a distinct middle segment appears to be absent. There exist models priced equivalently to laptops, lacking both software and optimization. Conversely, there are outright consumer commodities resembling budget phones from five years ago. However, we are now presenting the Honor Pad X9 review. It pertains to a rare category of devices that offer both affordability and contemporary hardware.
Honor Pad X9 Review
Presented here is the Honor Pad X9 review, delving into the features of an 11.5-inch tablet falling within the price range of £160 to £180. While a sophisticated laptop is not attainable at this cost, the tablet presents itself as a captivating alternative. Seeking a commendable screen? That’s no challenge. How about speakers with ample volume? Certainly.
Concurrently, the cost remains within reasonable limits, and the available accessories facilitate its transformation into a portable computer. Notably, there’s even a keyboard case with a conventional key layout suitable for outdoor use.
The tablet’s visual appeal exceeds that depicted in online images. The metallic casing imparts a pleasantly cool touch to the palm and emanates an elegant and austere aura. Our Honor Pad X9 review model is the Space Grey variant, although two additional colors are accessible in different markets. The back panel seamlessly integrates with the lateral sides, thereby augmenting the device’s overall sense of durability.
The assembly leaves no room for critique, yet the tablet boasts a weight slightly below half a kilogram, further enhancing its substantial feel. Upon grasping it, an immediate realization dawns – this is a superior device.
The primary focal point of the tablet resides unquestionably within its screen. It engulfs nearly 90% of the front panel, assuming a dual role for both information input and output. This tablet boasts an 11.5-inch 120Hz IPS panel, flaunting a 16:10 aspect ratio and a resolution of 2000×1200 pixels. The bezels are of such minimal width that gripping the device single-handedly feels comfortable, and further refining them to enhance elegance seems impractical.
Given this diagonal, the pixel density attains an optimal state where visibility of individual pixels becomes elusive, and the GPU’s workload remains comparatively moderate compared to a WQHD+ panel. The manufacturer asserts a maximum brightness nearing 400 nits, whereas our measurements recorded levels reaching up to 450 nits. While the manufacturer touts complete coverage of the sRGB color space, we initially anticipated a slightly lower extent: approximately 95%, accompanied by a color accuracy of Δ E < 8.1 *. This level of accuracy is reasonably typical for devices within this price bracket and notably surpasses that of any equivalently priced laptop.
However, the entire color spectrum veers towards the blue-green range, surpassing the blue emission threshold by 20%. This deviation contributes to a color temperature registering at an excessively cool 7500K. Rectification of this circumstance can be achieved by adjusting the color temperature setting, as depicted in our screenshot. This maneuver results in a reduction of color inaccuracy to Δ E < 2.3 * and a return to the standard 6500K color temperature.
A protective glass, endowed with an oleophobic coating, safeguards the screen, yet the absence of an anti-reflective layer or anti-glare treatment is conspicuous. While the implementation of a high-quality protective glass or a matte film partially mitigates this concern, the copious brightness margin effectively combats most instances of glare and reflections under ordinary usage conditions.
The Honor Pad X9 surpasses budget laptops in yet another aspect: its speaker performance. This tablet boasts a total of six speakers – four conventional broadband units and a pair of tweeters designed for handling high frequencies. However, the manufacturer’s innovations don’t halt there; they’ve integrated an AI system into the audio framework that dynamically adjusts the sound output based on the content being played. While music playback remains untouched, this system accentuates dialogue and enhances clarity when viewing movies, series, or lectures.
Criticizing the frequency range proves challenging, as it delivers a notable bass presence, faithful reproduction of midrange tones, and crisp highs. Nonetheless, exercising restraint with the volume is advisable; as you approach approximately 80% of the maximum volume, the speakers start to lose equilibrium, causing low-frequency resonance to overshadow other ranges. Although the speakers hold up reasonably well for noisy environments and video content consumption, when it comes to music, dialing down the volume slightly grants a more satisfying sound experience.
Honor Pad X9 specifications
- Display: 11.5-inch (2000 x 1200) 2K TFT LCD screen,120Hz refresh rate, 100%sRGB, 400nits peak brightness and 203 PPI, TÜV Rheinland flicker-free certification and Level Low Blue Light Certification
- CPU: Up to 2.6GHz Octa Core Snapdragon 685 6nm Mobile Platform
- GPU: Adreno 610 GPU
- RAM/ROM: 4GB RAM, 128GB storage
- OS: Android 13 based MagicOS 7.1
- Rear camera: 5MP rear camera with f/2.2 aperture (Auto Focus); up to FHD video recording
- Front camera: 5MP front camera with f/2.2 aperture (Fixed Focus)
- Audio: 6 Speakers, Hi-Res audio
- Connectivity: Dual Band Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.1, USB Type-C
- Battery: 7250mAh battery with 22.5W fast charging support
- Dimensions: 267.3 x 167.4 x 6.9mm
- Weight: 495g
Honor Pad X9 review test
The tablet’s hardware foundation rests upon the eight-core Snapdragon 685 processor. Critics might argue that it’s been in existence for three years, but the pertinent question is: so what? Its cost-effectiveness, proficiency in handling daily tasks, absence of excessive heating, and judicious battery consumption render it noteworthy. The primary distinction between processors from 2020 and their 2023 counterparts resides in the latter’s integration of novel technical processes, heightened signal coprocessors tailored for camera applications, and an array of supplementary features crucial for smartphones.
In the realm of tablets, employing a previous-generation mobile chip remains fitting, particularly when it can operate indefinitely at its peak frequency thanks to efficient heat dissipation within a capacious casing. Consider Apple’s choice for the iPad – a similar rationale prevails.
The tablet boasts 4 GB of dedicated RAM, complemented by an additional 3 GB allocated from the storage as a paging file. These capacities prove adequate for intricate tasks such as concurrently running a navigation app alongside music playback or engaging in certain games. Background tasks comfortably reside within the expanded memory until their eventual reactivation, consequently minimizing the frequency of application restarts and facilitating swifter interaction with various software elements, all without incurring the expense of an extraneous RAM module.
The results in benchmarks confirm this:
- CPU – 91,000 points
- Total – 290,000 points
- Single Core – 480 points
- Multi-Core – 1573 points
The tablet performs admirably with both emulators of old consoles and native 3D games. Notably, even a demanding title like Diablo Immortal maintains smoothness under medium graphics settings. Similarly, the performance of Honkai: Star Rail remains unaffected by its wealth of special effects.
Battery endurance also presents a commendable picture. The tablet houses a 7250 mAh battery capable of sustaining 2-3 days of moderate usage. This includes activities such as a few hours of reading, an hour or two of music playback accompanied by background YouTube streaming at a standard level of brightness and volume, unhurried instant messaging, and document-related work. Engaging in an hour-long TV show consumes approximately 6-10% of the charge, provided the brightness isn’t cranked to the maximum.
Recharging the battery isn’t an expedited affair; the power supply is capped at 10 W, which aligns with the included charger in the package. Even employing a robust 65-watt laptop power supply equipped with the PowerDelivery protocol fails to expedite the charging process.
Honor has effectively surmounted any longstanding issues with their tablet interface. The MagicOS seamlessly emulates a laptop’s operating system experience when coupled with a keyboard. This encompasses the operational familiarity of standard hotkeys, the persistence of active applications within the multitasking dock, the ability to affix messenger windows atop the browser, and the convenient side-by-side arrangement of two office program windows.
The adaptive refresh rate of the 120Hz screen adeptly synchronizes with scrolling velocity, rendering interface animations fluidly responsive to your touch. The tablet’s responsiveness to actions is instantaneous, granting a palpable sense of efficiency.
Installing applications poses no quandary either: the device is fully certified by Google, equipped with pre-installed services, and integrated with the search giant’s application store. Consequently, synchronization, application migration, and the transfer of your purchases seamlessly accompany your main account onto the tablet. The accessibility of Gmail, YouTube, and Google Photos remains consistent, notifications promptly materialize without delay, and overall functionality remains impeccable.
Better than a laptop!
An under $300 tablet is frequently embraced as the primary device for content consumption. However, when combined with a keyboard (a branded case for the Honor Pad X9 has been introduced, though its availability is still pending), it emerges as a compelling substitute for an economical laptop.
The mobile operating system outpaces Windows on modest hardware configurations. Among laptops priced below $500, a display featuring comparable color accuracy, brightness, and factory calibration remains conspicuously absent. The distinctions extend to weight and battery life: even with a keyboard, the Honor Pad outlasts its counterparts and weighs merely half as much. Audio quality, too, remains unparalleled in laptops costing up to $600. Consequently, for fundamental tasks involving document management, text composition, internet browsing, financial transactions, and routine operations, an Android tablet eclipses its budget-friendly laptop counterparts.
When it comes to entertainment, the Honor Pad X9 easily outshines laptops within the same cost bracket in terms of content playback and gaming capabilities. This assertion is particularly pertinent given the profusion of classic console emulators available for the Android OS.
The Honor Pad X9 excels in every aspect, boasting impeccable build quality, a refined operating system, and a harmonious hardware configuration, all of which contribute to its remarkable value. The tablet’s transformative potential, facilitated by the option to acquire a keyboard case, elevates it into a versatile productivity tool. The inclusion of a conventional layout, an integrated touchpad, and adept optimization within the MagicOS further augment its appeal.
This model’s standout features encompass an impressive display, premium sound quality, a sleek metal casing, and seamless performance. On the flip side, drawbacks include a potentially outdated fast charging standard, the absence of a headphone jack (attributed to spatial constraints), and the omission of microSD card support. However, the latter shortcoming is mitigated by the ample 128 GB of onboard storage.
Price and availability
The Honor Pad X9 is currently featured on Amazon.co.uk with an initial listing price of £179.99, which has been reduced to £159.99 through a discount of up to 11%.
- Metal Build Quality
- Impressive 120Hz IPS Display
- Six speakers with AI
- Smooth Performance with Snapdragon 685
- Keyboard Case Option
- MagicOS Integration
- Good Battery life
- Fast charging support is limited to 10W
- Lack of 3.5mm audio jack
- The tablet lacks microSD card support