Display

Evaluating the Toshiba Excite 7.7's display has turned out to be more difficult than anticipated, due in no small part to the AMOLED panel used. That difficulty is exacerbated by what Toshiba calls their "AutoBrite" technology. This is a fundamental issue that has been brought up in other reviews of the Excite 7.7 that I've read, and it could very easily be a dealbreaker.

Depending on what's displayed on the Excite 7.7, the screen will dynamically brighten or dim. This isn't the usual ambient light sensor brightness control, this has to do with the content itself, and unfortunately it can get distracting. I suspect it's an "extra mile" to try and optimize what's already a beautiful AMOLED display, but in practice even scrolling through a Facebook page can become slightly annoying when the display pops up a bit, then dims a bit depending on how much white is on what you're looking at. If you're looking at content that's a bit more contrasty and tends towards darker hues more, the display becomes brighter to compensate.

There is no way that I can find to turn this off.

Display Brightness

Display Brightness

The black level is bulletproof, but I'm ambivalent on the white level. I measured it with the same hardware I use to measure notebook displays, but 175 nits seems extremely low and that's only exacerbated by Toshiba's own dynamic brightness modulation. When I look at the display, it's definitely not 175 nits; eyeballing it I'd say maximum brightness is easily past 300 nits.

With all that said, it's hard not to be wowed by the display. AMOLED technology produces the deepest blacks you're going to get in any kind of portable display, and the colors are equally vibrant and impressive. Even with the brightness adjustments going on, I personally think it's still more desirable than even an IPS display, but your mileage may vary.

Performance

NVIDIA's Tegra 3's performance is already pretty much a known quantity, but it's still impressive to see Tegra 3 stretching its legs in a tablet this small.

SunSpider JavaScript Benchmark 0.9.1

Rightware BrowserMark

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt HD

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt HD (Offscreen 1080p)

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt Classic

GLBenchmark 2.5 - Egypt Classic (Offscreen 1080p)

Performance isn't out of the park, but it's definitely competitive with other, larger tablets. You're definitely not making any sacrifices for the form factor here, the Excite 7.7's about as fast as any other Tegra 3-powered tablet out there.

Introducing the Toshiba Excite 7.7 Battery Life and User Experience
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  • teiglin - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    +1. There are exactly two 7.7" SAMOLED+ tablets on the market today, and excluding the one direct competitor from this review is frankly mind-boggling to me.

    The P6810 (Galaxy Tab 7.7 wifi) can be had for under $450 online now, and it's (imo) a better device. Exynos4210 may not be quad-core but its day-to-day performance is at least as good as tegra3. Plus, it's available with a quad-band HSPA+ radio, which also includes full phone functionality, or you can spend up on the VZW version and forgo the phone for LTE.

    As you mention, there's not much market for any >$200 tablet that doesn't start with i and end with Pad, and even here, the comments bear out that most consumers stop reading once they see that it's $500, not 10", and not an iPad. But as others have also pointed out, this is an unusual, niche device, and I'm glad to see any attention it gets.
    Reply
  • ph00ny - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Amen!!!

    I can't believe he left out the other SAMOLED+ based tablet in the exact same size

    I have LTE version of the GT7.7 and it's been a real pleasure. Outside of knowing that verizon will hold me to HC for a very long time, it's been a gem. Great build quality, slim design, samoled+ and it can function as a hotspot. What more can i ask for?
    Reply
  • metafor - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    The only thing holding me back from the Samsung 7.7 is the lack of ICS. Samsung just seems to have forgotten about it when it comes to updates. Reply
  • teiglin - Thursday, August 30, 2012 - link

    Only the Verzion version lacks ICS at this point (thank you American carriers for your wonderfully smooth OS update process!). The international versions have both had ICS for almost two months, which is, admittedly, still pathetically slow from Samsung. Reply
  • haukionkannel - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Interesting new tablet! The screen is definitely interesting. I am guite sure, that people are more easily to forgive the price if they can compare it directly with another tablet.
    Hopefully we see some other tablets with Oled screens soon!
    Reply
  • frozentundra123456 - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    I have mixed feelings about tablets in general, but I do have a 7" Acer A100. I only paid 200.00 for it on close out . For 200.00 it has its place for browsing and watching netflix. But for 500.00 with no 3G or 4G connectivity included-- absolutely not. Android tablets just have too many limitations to pay this much for one. I dont care how nice the screen is. I would get a smartphone or laptop or wait for a windows tablet and pay more.

    I am just astounded at the price of this.

    Reply
  • mike55 - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    What if you measure the brightness of a full red, blue, and green screen separately and add them together? That might get you closer to a brightness measurement more comparable with other tablets. Reply
  • teiglin - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Was this review written back before the Excite 7.7 launched? The review contains several obvious anachronisms that undermine its usefulness. For example, the street price has dropped significantly ($430-$440 at a quick search), and it's been over a month since anyone who wanted a Nexus 7 didn't have one. I guess it shouldn't be surprising to find this sort of issue--the concluding line that "the Toshiba Excite 7.7 is probably going to wind up being lost in the shuffle" has already come true. Reply
  • TareX - Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - link

    Sorry, but this is a substandard review for Anandtech. I expected it to be way better given how long this review took to arrive. I'd rather have it written by someone familiar with Android and tablets, and not NEITHER. It was a Cowboy move assigning this task to Dustin.

    That said, the Nexus 7 DID kill the Toshiba Excite. $250 is too much to pay for a MicroSD (my only reason to buy this over the Nexus 7) and SAMOLED screen, expecially given the fact it won't come with 4.1, and Toshiba has a bad record updating its Android devices.
    Reply
  • dishayu - Thursday, August 30, 2012 - link

    Thank you for the tablet coverage but Plextor M5 Pro now, please! Reply

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