So with the Galaxy Note 8.0, you get the same grippy, shiny, plasticky case as the aforementioned models, the same light metallic rim running around the unit’s edges, and most of the unit’s ports, cameras and buttons look the same and are in the same places. This is a Samsung unit, and it looks and feels like one — either a dramatically larger version of one of the Korean manufacturer’s smartphones, or a smaller version of one of its tablets.
The Galaxy Note 8.0 comes with a solid list of features, although there are some desirable options missing, and others which have been downgraded compared to what we’re often used to in high-end smartphones, as a comparison.
To start with, this model comes with a quad-core CPU at 1.6GHz. The screen is an 8″ TFT model running at 1280×800, which delivers a resolution of 189PPI — a little better than the iPad mini at 163PPI, and a little worse than the Nexus 7 at 216PPI. You get 2GB of RAM on-board, as well as either 16GB or 32GB of storage space, and there’s a slot for a microSD card to add up to 64GB of storage space.
The main (back camera) is a little disappointing at only 5 megapixels, while the front camera is 1.3 megapixels. There’s a microUSB port for charging and synching the unit, as well a standard 3.5″ headphone jack, and you can connect up the unit to a TV via the MHL standard.
There are probably three aspects of the Note 8.0′s performance which you’re interested in: Its generic performance as a mid-size media consumption tablet compared with rivals; its hardware capabilities in terms of its battery and camera, and lastly, its hero feature: The S Pen. Let me lay your mind to rest in all three areas: In all three, the Note 8.0 performs very well.
We really liked the Galaxy Note 8.0. Its stylus framework works very well in the 8″ form factor, and this is a powerful and well-designed little tablet which represents a strong competitor to the iPad mini, Nexus 7, and other mid-sized tablets.