Notebookcheck

Lenovo Tab 2 A8 Tablet Review

Android 5.0 for cheap. The Tab 2 A8 promises extensive multimedia features for an affordable price of $129. Is this a worthy successor to last year's 8-inch Tab A8?

The Tab A series is Lenovo's budget lineup that sits below the Yoga tablet and Miix series of tablets. Thus, they are quite inexpensive at just $129 for the starting Tab 2 A8 model in review. We've already taken close looks at the first generation Tab A8 and Tab A10 models last year, so now we'll see if the second generation Tab 2 A8 brings anything worthwhile to the table.

Our 8-inch Tab 2 A8 ships with Android 5.0 pre-installed and Lenovo promises a UI design closer to that of the stock software, which should hopefully mean less graphics and speedier performance. The tablet is also one of the first to ship with a 1.3 GHz quad-core MediaTek MT8161 SoC and integrated dual-core Mali-T720 graphics. Otherwise, its core specifications are the standard 1280 x 800 IPS display, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB eMMC, 5 MP and 2 MP rear and front cameras, and 802.11n connectivity.

Working For Notebookcheck

Are you a techie who knows how to write? Then join our Team! Especially English native speakers welcome!

Currently wanted: 
News and Editorial Editor - Details here

Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F (TAB A8 Series)
Processor
Graphics adapter
Memory
1024 MB 
, LPDDR3
Display
8 inch 16:10, 1280 x 800 pixel, 10-point capacitive, IPS, glossy: yes
Storage
16 GB eMMC Flash, 16 GB 
,
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm audio, Card Reader: MicroSD, Sensors: Accelerometer, GPS, Proximity
Networking
802.11 b/g/n (b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4), Bluetooth 4.0, 2x Micro SIM
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 8.9 x 210 x 125 ( = 0.35 x 8.27 x 4.92 in)
Battery
16 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 4290 mAh
Operating System
Android 5.0 Lollipop
Camera
Webcam: Rear: 5 MP auto-focus, Front: 2 MP fixed-focus
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo Dolby Atmos, USB charger, SYNCit HD, SHAREit, Dolby Atmos, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
360 g ( = 12.7 oz / 0.79 pounds), Power Supply: 91 g ( = 3.21 oz / 0.2 pounds)
Price
115 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

At first glance, the Tab 2 A8 doesn't look all that different from the previous Tab A8. Both tablets have the same "Midnight Blue" soft-touch finish and plastic encasing alongside the front glass panel. Of course, additional colors like White, Ebony, and Pink are also available. However, the Tab 2 A8 is indeed slightly smaller than its predecessor (8.9 x 210 x 125 vs. 8.9 x 217 x 136) with sharper edges and corners and a smaller bezel. This makes the newer model easier to hold and use despite it weighing about the same at 360 grams. Nonetheless, we would have liked the Tab 2 A8 to be lighter considering that many of its competitors are easier to handle like the Acer Iconia One 8 (340 g), Dell Venue 8 7000 (308 g), and Asus MeMo Pad 8 (299 g).

Case quality is good overall with no visible depressions when applying pressure on the center of the screen or back cover. A small but insignificant creak can be heard on the back of the device, so an air gap still exists between the battery and outer case. Twisting the device is possible, though its extent is again not a cause for concern.

In terms of size, the Lenovo is not notably smaller or larger than most others in its size category as seen in our comparison below. The Nvidia Shield is a bigger 8-inch tablet due in part to its larger front-facing speakers. Otherwise, thicknesses are at most a 1 mm difference.

221 mm / 8.7 inch 126 mm / 4.96 inch 9.2 mm / 0.3622 inch 371 g0.818 lbs213.1 mm / 8.39 inch 126.2 mm / 4.97 inch 9.75 mm / 0.3839 inch 393 g0.866 lbs213 mm / 8.39 inch 123 mm / 4.84 inch 7.4 mm / 0.2913 inch 299 g0.659 lbs210 mm / 8.27 inch 125 mm / 4.92 inch 8.9 mm / 0.3504 inch 360 g0.794 lbs210.6 mm / 8.29 inch 127.7 mm / 5.03 inch 7.9 mm / 0.311 inch 360 g0.794 lbs209 mm / 8.23 inch 124 mm / 4.88 inch 8.9 mm / 0.3504 inch 410 g0.904 lbs209.8 mm / 8.26 inch 123.8 mm / 4.87 inch 7.9 mm / 0.311 inch 300 g0.661 lbs

Connectivity

Available interfaces are standard for a budget offering. Users will get Micro-USB 2.0, MicroSD, and 3.5 mm audio with no extras. A separate Tab 2 A8 configuration includes slots for Micro SIM alongside the MicroSD. Costlier and larger multimedia tablets, such as the Asus Memo Pad FHD 10, are normally equipped with HDMI ports.

Bottom: Microphone
Bottom: Microphone
Right: Power button, Volume rocker
Right: Power button, Volume rocker
Top: Micro-USB 2.0, 3.5 mm audio
Top: Micro-USB 2.0, 3.5 mm audio
Left: MicroSD, 2x Micro SIM (optional)
Left: MicroSD, 2x Micro SIM (optional)

Communication & GPS

All Tab 2 A8 configurations have WLAN up to 802.11n and GPS. A location fix is quick even without WLAN assistance and the tablet had no issues maintaining a lock for extended periods according to GPS Test.

WLAN had no issues connecting to a wireless-n network reliably and without drops. Signal strength at 10 meters is a bit weaker than a LG G2, but it is slightly more consistent nonetheless according to Wifi Analyzer.

The Tab 2 A8 configuration with dual Micro SIM slots for GSM/LTE support is not yet available in the States. However, it is expected to retail for $180 at launch. Such a feature is uncommon on budget tablets.

LG G2 GPS Test
LG G2 GPS Test
Lenovo Tab 2 A8 GPS Test
Lenovo Tab 2 A8 GPS Test
LG G2 WiFi signal ~10 m from source
LG G2 WiFi signal ~10 m from source
Lenovo Tab 2 A8 WiFi signal ~10 m from source
Lenovo Tab 2 A8 WiFi signal ~10 m from source

Cameras

The rear 5 MP and front 2 MP cameras are your typical tablet cameras. They have average picture quality with the usual face detection, ISO settings (100 to 1600), HDR, and other features. There is, however, no LED Flash. Images are not very sharp and look slightly muddy with hardened edges around objects even under bright outdoor conditions. There is little evidence of purple fringing that is common on cheap low-resolution cameras.

Video capture is capable of up to 1080p24 and files are saved as .3GP. Quality suffers from noise, white balance issues, and washed-out colors.

Accessories & Warranty

There are few extra accessories for the Tab 2 A8 outside of the included USB AC adapter. Lenovo sells a Folio case specifically for this model for $19. The older Tab A10 had an optional keyboard dock while this 8-inch Tab 2 A8 model does not appear to have any such proprietary add-ons.

Warranty is the standard 12-month period with one option to extend an additional year for $59.

Input Devices & Interface

An 8-inch display provides ample space for typing on both Landscape or Portrait modes. Unfortunately for the Tab 2 A8, its capacitive touchscreen is just not very accurate as the tablet would register an incorrect letter quite frequently. Also, we often had to tap on an icon or URL bar twice as it wouldn't register on the first touch. Thus, a strong or moderate tap is essentially necessary when typing or browsing. Such behavior is more common on cheap overseas smartphones and tablets than from major manufacturers like Lenovo.

Assuming you can become accustomed to the touchscreen, the tablet registers inputs quickly when typing. Speedy typists can be sure that the tablet will be able to output letters as quickly as they are inputted with no major lag.

A small but noteworthy mention is that the display is a 10-point multitouch panel instead of the 5-point that Lenovo is currently advertising. We can confirm this with Android apps made to test multitouch functionality like YAMTT.

Touchscreen could have been much more accurate
Touchscreen could have been much more accurate
Multitouch panel can recognize more than 5 simultaneous inputs
Multitouch panel can recognize more than 5 simultaneous inputs

Display

Users shouldn't expect too much from a 1280 x 800 resolution display as texts and images are simply not as crisp as other tablets with higher pixel count per inch. Lenovo's own 8-inch Tab S8, for example, uses a Full HD display that is both brighter and sharper with higher contrast to boot. Colors do not pop as much here and while it's a step above many budget offerings, it's more than few steps below models like the iPad or even Google's second generation Nexus 7.

368.1
cd/m²
371.2
cd/m²
369.1
cd/m²
362.8
cd/m²
381.6
cd/m²
355.2
cd/m²
365.4
cd/m²
373.9
cd/m²
345.2
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro Basic 2
Maximum: 381.6 cd/m² Average: 365.8 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 90 %
Center on Battery: 381.6 cd/m²
Contrast: 909:1 (Black: 0.42 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.63 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6
ΔE Greyscale 5.1 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
Gamma: 1.96
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50FNVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761WAsus MeMo Pad 8 ME581CL-1B027AHuawei MediaPad T1 8.0 LTEDell Venue 8 7000Lenovo Tab S8
Screen
5%
20%
-5%
-15%
32%
Brightness middle
381.6
455
19%
543
42%
324
-15%
231.1
-39%
418
10%
Brightness
366
469
28%
542
48%
301
-18%
239
-35%
401
10%
Brightness Distribution
90
92
2%
91
1%
87
-3%
84
-7%
85
-6%
Black Level *
0.42
0.68
-62%
0.4
5%
0.39
7%
0.22
48%
Contrast
909
669
-26%
1358
49%
831
-9%
1900
109%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.63
3.88
41%
5.74
13%
5.96
10%
7.45
-12%
4.19
37%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
5.1
3.38
34%
5.94
-16%
5.33
-5%
4.15
19%
4.26
16%
Gamma
1.96 112%
2.74 80%
2.5 88%
2.19 100%
1.72 128%
2.41 91%
CCT
7612 85%
6537 99%
6404 101%
7184 90%
6331 103%
6246 104%

* ... smaller is better

Color analyses with a spectrophotometer reveal generally inaccurate grayscale and hues. Color temperature is on the cool side enough where a clear difference can be seen when compared side-by-side to a Nexus 7 2013. The screen generally becomes more inaccurate at higher saturation levels, which suggests a limited color space.

The included MiraVision function allows custom color tuning and preset picture modes, such as Standard and Vivid. Users can manually adjust contrast, saturation, color temperature, sharpness, and picture brightness. It's a bit much for a low-cost tablet, though it's still a welcomed addition.

To the target user, however, these precision display measurements and settings mean little for day-to-day media and browsing use.

Grayscale
Grayscale
Saturation Sweeps
Saturation Sweeps
ColorChecker
ColorChecker
MiraVision settings...
MiraVision settings...
... with neat manual display options
... with neat manual display options

Outdoor usability is average at best. The glossy display makes the Tab 2 A8 difficult to use under direct sunlight or on a bright overcast day. Maximum display brightness, shade, and ideal viewing angles are all necessary for a comfortable viewing experience with this tablet.

Luckily, the IPS panel allows for excellent viewing angles on both Landscape and Portrait modes. This is compared to Lenovo's older A1000 model which uses a TN panel for very limited viewing angles.

Note that the official Lenovo specifications list mentions a light sensor on the Tab 2 A8, but we were unable to activate or use the sensor. Hardware analysis applications and even a visual inspection reveal no ambient light sensor on our particular test model.

Difficult to see on an overcast day
Difficult to see on an overcast day
Wide viewing angles from IPS panel
Wide viewing angles from IPS panel

Performance

The 1.3 GHz MediaTek MT8161 SoC, 650 MHz Mali-T720 GPU, and 1 GB RAM are all indicative of a budget device. However, that's not to say this is a slow tablet as raw performance is on par with the entry-level Snapdragon 410 according to Ice Storm Physics tests. This would put the Tab 2 A8 in the same ballpark as the HTC Desire 510 and Xiaomi Redmi 2 smartphones. Opting for the Tab 2 A10 will net users the faster 1.5 GHz MT8165 SoC.

Geekbench 3
Geekbench 3
Vellamo 3.0
Vellamo 3.0
Basemark OS II
Basemark OS II
AnTuTu
AnTuTu

System Performance

Our test model includes no SIM support
Our test model includes no SIM support

With only 1 GB of RAM to work with, the tablet starts off as a speedy and responsive device. Open a few too many applications without closing them, however, and the Tab 2 A8 can slow quite dramatically. Pressing Home, URL bars, or other icons will have a noticeable delay before the action even begins. This makes the tablet more difficult to use down the line without first cleaning up any unused apps.

Most benchmark applications below rank the Tab 2 A8 in line with other inexpensive 8-inch tablets. eMMC performance is especially good according to AndroBench where it even outclasses the Nvidia Shield Tablet.

Vellamo 3.x
Metal (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
911 Points ∼24%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
1754 (min: 1729, max: 1778) Points ∼47% +93%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
1098 Points ∼29% +21%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
804 Points ∼22% -12%
Huawei MediaPad X1
874 Points ∼23% -4%
Multicore Beta (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1398 Points ∼31%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
2460 (min: 2444, max: 2476) Points ∼55% +76%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
1446 Points ∼32% +3%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
1005 Points ∼22% -28%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1200 Points ∼27% -14%
Browser (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1866 Points ∼25%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
4860 (min: 4833, max: 4903) Points ∼64% +160%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
2869 (min: 2681, max: 3056) Points ∼38% +54%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
2944 Points ∼39% +58%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
1679 Points ∼22% -10%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1973 Points ∼26% +6%
PCMark for Android - Work performance score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
3396 Points ∼17%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
2769 Points ∼14% -18%
Huawei MediaPad X1
2019 Points ∼10% -41%
Sunspider
1.0 Total Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1713.1 ms * ∼19%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
525 ms * ∼6% +69%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
458 ms * ∼5% +73%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
609 ms * ∼7% +64%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
2616.2 ms * ∼29% -53%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1277 ms * ∼14% +25%
0.9.1 Total Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1654.4 ms * ∼16%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
532 ms * ∼5% +68%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1217.4 ms * ∼12% +26%
Google V8 Ver. 7 - Google V8 Ver. 7 Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2877 Points ∼15%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
8040 Points ∼41% +179%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
5356 Points ∼27% +86%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
2050 Points ∼10% -29%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1835 Points ∼9% -36%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2510 Points ∼5%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
6777 Points ∼13% +170%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
5148 Points ∼10% +105%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
1891 Points ∼4% -25%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1603 Points ∼3% -36%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
24610.2 ms * ∼41%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
4286 ms * ∼7% +83%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
5496 ms * ∼9% +78%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
17355.5 ms * ∼29% +29%
Huawei MediaPad X1
22418.8 ms * ∼38% +9%
WebXPRT 2013
Offline Notes (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1978.7 ms * ∼41%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
748 ms * ∼16% +62%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
859 ms * ∼18% +57%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
3350.3 ms * ∼70% -69%
Huawei MediaPad X1
2227.3 ms * ∼46% -13%
Stocks Dashboard (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2058 ms * ∼55%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
742 ms * ∼20% +64%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
783 ms * ∼21% +62%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
3040.9 ms * ∼81% -48%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1741.1 ms * ∼47% +15%
Face Detection (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
3071.3 ms * ∼25%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
975 ms * ∼8% +68%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
3307 ms * ∼27% -8%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
3577.4 ms * ∼30% -16%
Huawei MediaPad X1
2876.7 ms * ∼24% +6%
Photo Effects (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1091.3 ms * ∼12%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
698 ms * ∼8% +36%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
654 ms * ∼7% +40%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
1678.3 ms * ∼19% -54%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1609.6 ms * ∼18% -47%
Overall Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
216 Points ∼9%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
530 Points ∼23% +145%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
378 Points ∼17% +75%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
148 Points ∼7% -31%
Huawei MediaPad X1
202 Points ∼9% -6%
WebXPRT 2015 - Overall Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
47 Points ∼6%
Peacekeeper - --- (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
620 Points ∼10%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
467 Points ∼8% -25%
Huawei MediaPad X1
745 Points ∼12% +20%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
609 Points ∼30%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
863 Points ∼42% +42%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
595 Points ∼29% -2%
Huawei MediaPad X1
349 Points ∼17% -43%
Graphics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
285 Points ∼1%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
8065 Points ∼28% +2730%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
355 Points ∼1% +25%
Huawei MediaPad X1
394 Points ∼1% +38%
Memory (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
472 Points ∼6%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
596 Points ∼8% +26%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
324 Points ∼4% -31%
Huawei MediaPad X1
267 Points ∼4% -43%
System (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1221 Points ∼7%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
1012 Points ∼6% -17%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
881 Points ∼5% -28%
Huawei MediaPad X1
993 Points ∼6% -19%
Overall (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
563 Points ∼7%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
1431 Points ∼17% +154%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
496 Points ∼6% -12%
Huawei MediaPad X1
437 Points ∼5% -22%
AndEBench
Java (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
768 Iter./s ∼24%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
1026 Iter./s ∼32% +34%
Huawei MediaPad X1
537 Iter./s ∼17% -30%
Native (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
7742 Iter./s ∼25%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
17300 Iter./s ∼57% +123%
Huawei MediaPad X1
11881 Iter./s ∼39% +53%
ANDEBench PRO
3D (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
53 fps ∼40%
Platform (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
248 Points ∼4%
Storage (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
7958 KB/s ∼8%
Memory Latency (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
7268 KOps/s ∼90%
Memory Bandwidth (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
6150 MB/s ∼29%
CoreMark-PRO/HPC (Base) (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
3509 Points ∼55%
Device Score (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
11211 Points ∼43%
Epic Citadel
Ultra High Quality (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
39.9 fps ∼65%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
59.4 fps ∼96% +49%
High Quality (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
58.8 fps ∼97%
Huawei MediaPad X1
52.6 fps ∼86% -11%
High Performance (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
59.1 fps ∼97%
Huawei MediaPad X1
53.2 fps ∼88% -10%
AndroBench 3-5
Random Write 4KB (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2.96 MB/s ∼1%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
0.9 MB/s ∼0% -70%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
0.7 MB/s ∼0% -76%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
9.76 MB/s ∼4% +230%
Huawei MediaPad X1
0.78 MB/s ∼0% -74%
Random Read 4KB (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
15.54 MB/s ∼8%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
11 MB/s ∼6% -29%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
13 MB/s ∼7% -16%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
20.24 MB/s ∼10% +30%
Huawei MediaPad X1
7.62 MB/s ∼4% -51%
Sequential Write 256KB (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
45.38 MB/s ∼8%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
15.5 MB/s ∼3% -66%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
14 MB/s ∼2% -69%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
42.81 MB/s ∼7% -6%
Huawei MediaPad X1
11.26 MB/s ∼2% -75%
Sequential Read 256KB (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
138.02 MB/s ∼9%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
83 MB/s ∼6% -40%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
95 MB/s ∼6% -31%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
151.82 MB/s ∼10% +10%
Huawei MediaPad X1
37.58 MB/s ∼2% -73%
3DMark
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
9598 Points ∼11%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
21086 Points ∼24% +120%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
17455 Points ∼20% +82%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
7763 Points ∼9% -19%
Huawei MediaPad X1
11513 Points ∼13% +20%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
4340 Points ∼1%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
39590 Points ∼7% +812%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
13414 Points ∼3% +209%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
4166 Points ∼1% -4%
Huawei MediaPad X1
5227 Points ∼1% +20%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
4942 Points ∼2%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
33129 Points ∼14% +570%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
14142 Points ∼6% +186%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
4644 Points ∼2% -6%
Huawei MediaPad X1
5949 Points ∼3% +20%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Physics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
8398 Points ∼10%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
7552 Points ∼9% -10%
Huawei MediaPad X1
10001 Points ∼12% +19%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Graphics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2734 Points ∼0%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
2433 Points ∼0% -11%
Huawei MediaPad X1
3574 Points ∼0% +31%
1920x1080 Ice Storm Extreme Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
3216 Points ∼1%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
2864 Points ∼1% -11%
Huawei MediaPad X1
4169 Points ∼2% +30%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Physics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
8693 Points ∼6%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
7639 Points ∼5% -12%
Huawei MediaPad X1
9720 Points ∼6% +12%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Graphics (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
2739 Points ∼0%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
5244 Points ∼1% +91%
Huawei MediaPad X1
5382 Points ∼1% +96%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
3231 Points ∼0%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
5637 Points ∼1% +74%
Huawei MediaPad X1
5975 Points ∼1% +85%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
3495 Points ∼4%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
2324 Points ∼3%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
1142 Points ∼1%
Huawei MediaPad X1
1643 Points ∼2%
32 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
1127 Points ∼23%
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX
771 Points ∼16%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
340 Points ∼7%
Huawei MediaPad X1
537 Points ∼11%
64 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
1838 Points ∼5%
64 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
616 Points ∼13%

Legend

 
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F MediaTek MT8161, ARM Mali-T720 MP2, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W Nvidia Tegra K1, NVIDIA Tegra K1 Kepler GPU, 16 GB iNAND Flash
 
Asus Memo Pad 8 ME181CX Intel Atom Z3745, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy Tab Active Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 MSM8926, Qualcomm Adreno 305, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Huawei MediaPad X1 HiSilicon Kirin 910, ARM Mali-450 MP4, 16 GB eMMC Flash

* ... smaller is better

Games

The integrated Mali-T720 is an uncommon GPU compared to the Mali-400 on budget devices, but performance differences are narrow. Its Ice Storm Graphics score at 720p is about 20 percent lower than the old Tegra 3 and on par with a single-core PowerVR SGX544.

Luckily for the Tab 2 A8, its low resolution display is a great fit for the GPU when gaming. 3D titles like N.O.V.A. 3 play smoothly at the native resolution. Performance would have suffered tremendously if the tablet had a 1080p panel as 3DMark Ice Storm at 1080p runs well below 30 FPS.

3D titles run fairly smoothly
3D titles run fairly smoothly
Ice Storm Extreme runs below 20 FPS
Ice Storm Extreme runs below 20 FPS

Emissions

Temperature

Idling surface temperatures are flat across the board. The maximum temperature difference is only about 5 to 6 C even under very high stress, so while the entire tablet will experience a noticeable rise in temperature, no one particular spot becomes uncomfortably warmer than the other. With that said, the left side of the tablet (nearest the camera) will see a faster temperature rise than the opposite side as the IC components are directly underneath this particular area.

Max. Load
 34 °C
93 F
28 °C
82 F
28.6 °C
83 F
 
 34.4 °C
94 F
28.6 °C
83 F
28.8 °C
84 F
 
 33.8 °C
93 F
28.4 °C
83 F
28.8 °C
84 F
 
Maximum: 34.4 °C = 94 F
Average: 30.4 °C = 87 F
30.2 °C
86 F
31 °C
88 F
33.4 °C
92 F
30.4 °C
87 F
30.4 °C
87 F
32.8 °C
91 F
29.6 °C
85 F
30.4 °C
87 F
33.8 °C
93 F
Maximum: 33.8 °C = 93 F
Average: 31.3 °C = 88 F
Room Temperature 21 °C = 70 F | Fluke 62 Mini IR Thermometer
(+) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 30.4 °C / 87 F, compared to the average of 30.7 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Tablet.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 34.4 °C / 94 F, compared to the average of 34.8 °C / 95 F, ranging from 22.2 to 51.8 °C for the class Tablet.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 33.8 °C / 93 F, compared to the average of 34.3 °C / 94 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 22 °C / 72 F, compared to the device average of 30.7 °C / 87 F.

Speakers

Dolby Atmos software
Dolby Atmos software

The front-facing speakers are the first from Lenovo to include Doly Atmos technology, which is essentially a built-in App not unlike that on many multimedia notebooks with Dolby Digital Plus. The manual equalizer and sound enhancements add depth to the otherwise hollow speakers.

Sound quality is thus better than expected from a budget tablet as the speakers are loud and do not degrade at higher volume settings. Bass is still lacking, however, and no amount of software enhancements can alleviate this common drawback of small tablets.

Battery Life

The non-removable 16 Wh (4290 mAh) Li-Ion polymer battery is a tad on the small side compared to other 8-inch tablets. Nonetheless, runtimes are about where we expected compared to even more expensive models like the Asus MeMo Pad 8 or Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0. Users can expect just over 9 hours of constant WLAN use at 150 nit brightness (around 40 percent setting) or about half of that when running intensive applications at maximum brightness.

Lenovo claims a runtime of up to 8 hours on a single charge, so our own looping WLAN test shows the official count as a slight underestimate. Of course, this is good as manufacturers normally overestimate product runtimes.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
23h 10min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
9h 18min
Load (maximum brightness)
4h 23min
Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F
16.3 Wh
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
19.8 Wh
Asus MeMo Pad 8 ME581CL-1B027A
15.2 Wh
Huawei MediaPad T1 8.0 LTE
16.9 Wh
Dell Venue 8 7000
18.2 Wh
Lenovo Tab S8
21 Wh
Battery Runtime
-45%
-19%
12%
41%
12%
Reader / Idle
1390
856
-38%
790
-43%
1545
11%
1790
29%
1425
3%
WiFi v1.3
558
633
13%
Load
263
128
-51%
276
5%
402
53%
315
20%
WiFi
347
424
495
610

Pros

+ Inexpensive
+ Bright display
+ MiraVision color settings
+ Optional dual Micro SIM support with GSM and 4G LTE
+ Good battery life
+ MicroSD support
+ Fast eMMC performance
+ Android 5.0
+ Good front-facing speakers

Cons

- No ambient light sensor
- Heavier than other 8-inch tablets
- Only 1 GB RAM; 1280 x 800 resolution
- Performance can slow quickly
- Touchscreen often registers inputs incorrectly

Verdict

In review: Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50. Test model provided by Lenovo US
In review: Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50. Test model provided by Lenovo US

The Tab 2 A8 is a respectable tablet for its asking price of $129. Display brightness and battery life are both above average and sound quality is quite good considering its budget market. Unfortunately, not much else about the device can be praised. We can't help but feel that both its 1 GB RAM and 800p resolution display feel lacking for a tablet in 2015. It's also a little heavier than other 8-inch models and its touchscreen makes a habit of registering inputs incorrectly.

We recommend Lenovo's Tab S8 over the Tab 2 A8 for users looking to own an 8-inch tablet. The Tab S8 is lighter, thinner, brighter, and all-around better than the Tab 2 A8 and currently retails for $169. The extra $40 would be well spent.

We recommend Lenovo's Tab S8 over the Tab 2 A8 for users looking to own an 8-inch tablet.

Lenovo Tab 2 A8-50F - 06/25/2015 v4(old)
Allen Ngo

Chassis
71%
Keyboard
80 / 80 → 100%
Pointing Device
80%
Connectivity
51 / 65 → 78%
Weight
83 / 40-88 → 90%
Battery
94%
Display
76%
Games Performance
54 / 68 → 79%
Application Performance
28 / 76 → 37%
Temperature
94%
Noise
100%
Audio
60 / 91 → 66%
Camera
60 / 85 → 71%
Average
72%
81%
Tablet - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

Read all 1 comments / answer
static version load dynamic
Loading Comments
Comment on this article
Please share our article, every link counts!
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Lenovo Tab 2 A8 Tablet Review
Allen Ngo, 2015-06-25 (Update: 2015-06-25)
Allen Ngo
Allen Ngo - US Editor in Chief
After graduating with a B.S. in environmental hydrodynamics from the University of California, I studied reactor physics to become licensed by the U.S. NRC to operate nuclear reactors. There's a striking level of appreciation you gain for everyday consumer electronics after working with modern nuclear reactivity systems astonishingly powered by computers from the 80s. When I'm not managing day-to-day activities and US review articles on Notebookcheck, you can catch me following the eSports scene and the latest gaming news.