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Old September 17th, 2011, 01:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Impression of the Vizio VTAB1008

I already have a Tegra2 tablet (nVidia Tegra2 dualcore Android tablets). I wanted to give the Vizio a try to see how well it performed with videos (read my second post for the answer to this question).

Hardware:
-I really like the formfactor, it physically feels like what a tablet should be, light and not long. I don't like the forms of any 10" tablets I've used since they seem larger than necessary and/or long. I like this device more than the 7" Acer A100 as well, which is thin and long so not as comfortable to hold as portrait mode. Typing with thumbs is really easy, the device is short (regardless of landscape or portrait) so its easy to hold and reach.

-The speaker and screen image of the Vizio is pretty good, better than some Tegra2 10" tablet such as Acer A500 and Toshiba Thrive. I think the color saturation is just right, not too much more too little. But viewing angles won't compete with IPS displays. The speakers are placed in ideal position as well, on top and stereo, not in the bottom or behind.

-It charges using microUSB, but the charge time is long, even with my 2Amp Asus Transformer charger. Better use the wall adaptor, as charging from computer will take a long time. However, USB charging is a big plus.

-The device does gets warm in the back, not hot, but I think using a case will be much more comfortable.

-Wifi signal is pretty good, should be no problem.


Software:
-Overall, I don't like the interface that Vizio implemented because it has animation for the most basic tasks that can not be turned off. These animation really slow down usage of the entire system. Laggy experiences are sometimes due to the design, not due to performance of the hardware. I believe when there are custom roms for this device with basic Gingerbread interface, no animation, it will feel very responsive and speedy.

-Web browsing speed is fine. Web pages with too much media contents, flash or plug-ins may have lag when navigation, but shouldn't destroy the experience. I tried ezPDF to view large PDF books and it does a fine job, maybe half a second or a second slower than Tegra2 devices to parse a page, but it's fine.

-It runs Android 2.x Gingerbread, so it will not support apps built specifically for Android 3.x Honeycomb, such as PolarisOffice. However, this isn't a problem because probably 99.9% of apps supports Gingerbread.

-This device is no slouch when it comes to video playback, but your videos must be encoded in correct format. If you want to view videos smoothly, use Handbrake to convert your video to 720p or 1080p h.264, with "baseline" settings (ie. iPod4 and iPad presets), this tablet will have no problem handling them.

-Currently (as of firmware version 1.3), the device is tuned to work with Adobe Flash 10.1, if you force update it to newer version it will not perform well. In-browser flash videos play well up to 480p, but struggled with 720p similar to any Tegra2 tablets.


Conclusion: If you are not into too much geeky stuff, use tablet lightly, read ebooks and also want the extra remote control feature to control your TV and players, than this can meet your needs. I recommend to wait until there is a way to root this device and custom roms before getting it.

If you want to use your tablet as a netbook or laptop replacement, have superb performance on webpages with heavy multimedia contents and multitask, then this isn't your device.

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Old September 18th, 2011, 06:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The Vizio indeed can playback decent amount of videos, but its doesn't support enough formats to make it worth keeping over my Acer A500. It seems h.264 videos with complex compression settings struggle to play, same as Tegra2 tablets. But it did manage to play a few 720p videos very smoothly that my Acer A500 couldn't manage. It lack codecs for some format though (like older mpeg and some variation of h.264) so there were some videos couldn't playback at all.

Bottom line is, in my opinion, this Vizio wins over the current Tegra2 devices in term of HD h.264 video playback, but only if the video is encoded correctly without complex compression techniques. Problem is its not a big enough a margin to really matter. Overall the Tegra2 devices are still better for all tasks since its dual core and support many 3D games.
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Old September 18th, 2011, 09:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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My impressions

My wife and I are enjoying the VTAB. We are using Oovoo to video chat with our 3 1/2 year old grand-kids, playing games, and reading on it.
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Old January 3rd, 2012, 11:19 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Try installing the VTL Launcher, it cost 3.00 but it is worth it.
https://market.android.com/details?id=com.vtlab.launcher&feature=search_resul t#?t=W251bGwsMSwyLDEsImNvbS52dGxhYi5sYXVuY2hlciJd

Once installed you can go in to settings and turn off animations.
If you are not quite thrilled with the default layout of the Vizio theme, this launcher will make this tablet feel like a normal tablet.
Look at my post here on the VTL Launcher, it has more information.
Anyone seen this yet?
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Old March 11th, 2012, 07:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Until Honeycomb becomes available, I recommend using LaucherPro. It is a very good interface and can be customized to the way you like it.
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Old March 12th, 2012, 04:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I, too, am not fond of the skin Vizio uses. I have tried a couple of after-market launchers, but they seem to have a lot of memory-usage problems. What I find frustrating is the funky file structure, which leads to some apps not being able to "find" files stored on the SD micro card. (Or to find the SD micro card to store files there.)
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Old March 27th, 2012, 07:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
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My Vtab1008 automatically upgraded to Honeycomb last week. I think it's a bit slower than before and to be honest I don't care for the changes to the navigation buttons. I'll play with it some more before I decide to go back.
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Old March 28th, 2012, 10:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drang View Post
I, too, am not fond of the skin Vizio uses. I have tried a couple of after-market launchers, but they seem to have a lot of memory-usage problems. What I find frustrating is the funky file structure, which leads to some apps not being able to "find" files stored on the SD micro card. (Or to find the SD micro card to store files there.)
With the upgrade to Honeycomb, my problems with the file structure are gone, and Go Launcher works just fine.
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Old June 7th, 2012, 08:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Question

I have much experience with legacy software and zero experience with Android. I got my VTAB1008 yesterday, upgraded to Honeycomb, and am underwhelmed. How do I get past the Apps launcher and dive into the file system? Can I load PDFs and CBRs from my other systems and read them on this guy? And MP3s and other audio? I don't need this as a video machine -- my interests are documents, spreadsheets, web-browsing, and playing my music library. Where is a good place to start?
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