Transformer Pad TF300 sports a lower price tag, available from mid-May

Transformer Pad TF300 sports a lower price tag, available from mid-May

The ASUS Transformer Prime is an excellent piece of kit, and the Transformer Pad Infinity even more so, but those looking for a more budget-friendly “Transformer” can now satisfy their tablet desires with the Transformer Pad TF300.

Unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in February, the new tablet will be available in Singapore from mid-May.

But what you really want to know is the difference between this pad and the older pad. Does the word “Prime” make a significant difference?

The construction, for one, is definitely a departure from previous models. The Transformer Prime is made of aluminium, and looks sleek and sexy. The Transformer Pad 300, on the other hand, is made of plastic. Although the concentric circular design is still on the cover, it may just lack the premium feel.

The Transformer Pad 300 will also come in three colours – red, blue, and white – while the Prime comes in the classier glossy champagne and metallic grey colours.

The Pad 300 is also slightly thicker than the Prime: 9.9mm vs 8.3mm.  So it’s definitely chunkier, but probably not enough to make any big difference during usage. Both tablets, notably, run on the Nvidia Tegra 3 processor.

The biggest difference that will directly affect usage will likely be the screen. Although both measure in at 10.1 inches, the Prime utilises a Super IPS panel while the Pad TF300 is a mere IPS model. The Prime can also go up to 600 nits of brightness, but the Pad TF300 is only capable of 350 nits. This will affect readability in direct sunlight.

Camera-wise, the Pad TF300 is actually superior to the Prime, at least on paper. The former is an 8-megapixel, f/2.2 shooter, while the latter has the same 8-megapixel but its aperture is only f/2.4. This should mean that, just marginally, the Pad TF300’s camera may be better in low-light situations.

Oh, and the most important factor: price. A 32GB model bundled with a keyboard dock will sell for S$749, a significant drop from the Transformer Prime’s S$899 at launch.

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