CPU Performance

The Venue 8 is a unique device among the Android devices that we have tested. While most Android smartphones and tablets employ ARM based SoCs, Dell has opted to use Intel's Atom Z3580 processor. Z3580 is part of Intel's Moorefield line, built on Intel's 22nm process and sporting four Silvermont cores with a max burst frequency of 2.33GHz. To test CPU performance we turn to our standard web based benchmarks, along with Basemark OS II. For our 2015 benchmark suite we've removed Sunspider as it's become too much of an optimization target.

Kraken 1.1 (Chrome/Safari/IE)Google Octane v2  (Chrome/Safari/IE)WebXPRT (Chrome/Safari/IE)

The Z3580 performs very well in all of our web based benchmarks. Its scores are in the same range as devices with Apple's A8 and NVIDIA's Tegra K1 which currently hold the best scores of the devices we've tested.

Basemark OS II 2.0 - OverallBasemark OS II 2.0 - SystemBasemark OS II 2.0 - MemoryBasemark OS II 2.0 - GraphicsBasemark OS II 2.0 - Web

The performance in Basemark OS II is a mixed bag when compared to the consistently good results from our web benchmarks. We see fairly good performance in the web and memory sections of the benchmark, but less impressive scores in the system and graphics categories. This leads to an overall score that sits in the middle of the results from other devices we've tested.

Whether a tablet's performance is acceptable or not will often be based largely on how much the tablet costs. Class leading performance can't really be expected from inexpensive tablets, and for expensive ones having class leading performance is a must. At $399, the Venue 8 is priced at the same point as the Nexus 9, and it trades blows with it across our different tests. With generational improvements to their processors, it's not hard to imagine Intel becoming a major performance leader in the mobile space. Performance isn't the only metric considered when a manufacturer is deciding on the processor for their device, but I wouldn't be surprised if we end up seeing more design wins for Intel in the future.

Device Performance

A device's performance in benchmarks is a fairly objective measurement of performance, but it may not necessarily be representative of how a device actually feels to a user. Issues with performance in the real world can fall under many categories, which range from long loading times to stutters and sluggish framerates. The "jank" that has historically existed on Android devices has typically fallen under the latter category rather than the former. With each iteration of Android, Google has made improvements to this perceived smoothness in the Android interface. The recently released Android Lollipop brought large increases to framerates in many key areas, but the Venue 8 ships with KitKat and can not take advantage of them.

Unfortunately, the Android 4.4 KitKat experience on the Venue 8 is not always as free from jank as one would expect based on its CPU performance. Many issues manifest themselves as stutters or drops in framerate, even in common animations like bring down the notification shade and rotating the device. Turning on any live wallpapers is also guaranteed to bring the animations in the launcher well below 60fps, and even below 30fps. Many scrolling lists also suffer from the jank that was commonly seen on pre-Lollipop versions of Android. It's unfortunate that the Venue 8 didn't ship with Lollipop, as I don't think I would have to discuss performance issues like these if it had. Hopefully a Lollipop update arrives for the Venue 8 soon.

Introduction GPU and NAND Performance
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  • Sushisamurai - Sunday, March 15, 2015 - link

    Hell, even CNET and sister sites quoted anandtech when the cheating was found/occurred. That's some pretty big influence there. What about the times when they got GPU architectures from imagination and the like (we still miss u anand), that was also to "OEM recommendations". I feel AT's done some good work in terms of pushing the consumer/review industry Reply
  • az060693 - Friday, March 13, 2015 - link

    Cirrus Logic DAC? I really want to see how good the audio output is. Reply
  • zodiacfml - Friday, March 13, 2015 - link

    Dell, why bother? Why not compete with Asus's convertible laptops with this type of hardware. Reply
  • shadarlo - Friday, March 13, 2015 - link

    Tablets that cost >$150-$200 should always come with usb-c, HDMI, or display port out. There are basically no exceptions to that, but it's even more true if it's a Windows tablet. Not having a 2nd USB port and a video out port on a windows tablet is beyond stupid.

    This being android and $400 is a hard sell to me. I just can't understand the purpose of a $400 android tablet unless it had phone functionality built into it. If it was a phone as well it'd be AWESOME.
    Reply
  • FXi - Friday, March 13, 2015 - link

    Too bad there isn't a Win 8.1 version. Might have actually sold a bunch then Reply
  • Wolfpup - Thursday, March 19, 2015 - link

    Regarding that CPU...I thought that all second gen Atoms were going to be using Intel's GPUs from now on? I had no idea they had any running PowerVR still.

    I thought that sounded like a bad idea for driver support until I realized this was an Android tablet (thought it was Windows 8 at first) and lost interest.

    BUT I'm still curious as to why there's a second gen Atom chip shipping with PowerVR instead of an Intel GPU.

    All the ones I've seen until this are 4 core parts that are fairly slow clocked. Not exactly great considering a 20 or even 40 core part isn't a powerhouse, but at least it means they're driver compatible with Intel's other GPUs.

    Wish that Nvidia had been able to license x86 and we had Tegra K1 tablets running Windows 8, complete with a GPU that would actually run modern games semi-decently. THAT would have been seriously cool (well, assuming the CPU part was fast enough LOL).
    Reply
  • Razzy76 - Friday, March 20, 2015 - link

    Android ruined this tablet. Reply
  • NamelessTed - Tuesday, March 24, 2015 - link

    If this tablet were running Windows it would be much more compelling to me. I got an nVidia Tegra Note tablet when they first launched and it has been a great product. The longer I use it the more I wish I had a slightly bigger screen and that I had the ability to use Windows. Within the next year I really really hope we see a sub-$400 Windows 10 tablet with front facing speakers and an 8-9" display. Reply
  • Angelina Mathews - Monday, July 18, 2016 - link

    Hello everyone !! I am really very excited to share my experience of using Dell Venue 8 Pro 3000 Series Tablet. Though it is shocking but also the fact that at starting when I purchased this tablet I was not confident about my decision since I was using tablet of this brand for the very first time but then later on after being a user of it I realize that this tablet is actually highly efficient. It being powered a host of Windows 8.1 business specific features and applications facilitates the users with an amazing working experience. To know more, click here - http://delltablet.laptab.in Reply

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