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Nvidia Shield Tablet LTE Review Update

Klaus Hinum, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Martina Osztovits), 10/11/2014

Mobile gaming fun. Thanks to the LTE Cat 4 module, the top model can be used for gaming on-the-go anywhere. In addition, Nvidia doubled the flash memory, which worked significantly faster in our test model.

Nvidia Shield Tablet with LTE

For the original German review, see here.

After our in-depth review of the Shield Tablet with WLAN and 16 GB, we evaluate the more expensive LTE model with an additional 32 GB flash memory now. You'll get an Icera i500 chip from Nvidia, which supports 2G, 3G, and 4G (LTE Cat 3 100 MBits, also Cat 4 with 150 MBits in theory) for a surcharge of 80 Euros (~$100). In some regions, the Shield Tablet also offers telephone functionality. However, compatible software was not preinstalled in our test model.

The following review only covers the differences to the Wi-Fi model. Please refer to our in-depth review of the 16 GB tablet for details about build quality, GPS, WLAN, display, performance, speakers, and emissions.

LTE in Practice

The Icera i500 is a software driven modem, which can currently reach LTE Cat 3 (Cat 3: up to 100 Mbps download, 50 Mbps upload) in the Shield Tablet. During the launch event in Nice, we could test the Shield Tablet with two different LTE providers. Despite poor reception (0 to 1 bars according to Android), we reached an average Ping of 60 ms, 23 Mbps download (maximum: 52 Mbps) and 8 Mbps upload (maximum 21 Mbps). According to Icera up to 70 Mbps is possible in practice (close to the radio cell, no sharing). Nvidia also showed that it is possible to play games online via LTE without problems during the event. Disconnections and lags did not occur.

3G reception (Bob network in Austria) was also stable in our test with a data rate of 40 ms Ping, 4.5 Mbps download and 2.4 Mbps upload. An LG Nexus 4 tested at the same time achieved slightly better results (apart from Ping, which is important for games) with an average of 50 ms Ping, 5 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload.

fastest upload in Nizza
fastest download in Nizza

32 GB NAND Performance

significantly better performance: WLAN vs. LTE Shield Tablet
WLAN vs. LTE

It is somewhat surprising that the 32 GB model performs significantly better in the AndroBench 3 memory test. In particular, the results are significantly higher than the WiFi model's in the write tests.

As a result, the LTE model made it among the fastest Android devices (tablets and smartphones) reviewed by us in AndroBench 3.

By the way, the fast memory hardly has an impact on system performance (Antutu). The difference was within a normal margin in our test.

AndroBench 3-5
Random Write 4KB (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761
2.5 (min: 1.9, max: 2.6) MB/s ∼2%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
0.9 MB/s ∼1% -64%
NVIDIA Shield
0.79 MB/s ∼0% -68%
Acer Liquid S2
1.4 MB/s ∼1% -44%
LG G3
1.44 MB/s ∼1% -42%
Asus Transformer Pad TF103C-1B072A
1.09 MB/s ∼1% -56%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE-Version
1.56 MB/s ∼1% -38%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5
1.56 MB/s ∼1% -38%
Wiko Highway
1.18 MB/s ∼1% -53%
Motorola Moto X 1. Gen 2013
2.44 MB/s ∼1% -2%
Random Read 4KB (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761
12.5 (min: 12, max: 13) MB/s ∼7%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
11 MB/s ∼6% -12%
NVIDIA Shield
13.4 MB/s ∼8% +7%
Acer Liquid S2
11.91 MB/s ∼7% -5%
LG G3
20.98 MB/s ∼12% +68%
Asus Transformer Pad TF103C-1B072A
13.61 MB/s ∼8% +9%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE-Version
9.5 MB/s ∼5% -24%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5
12.1 MB/s ∼7% -3%
Wiko Highway
11.26 MB/s ∼7% -10%
Motorola Moto X 1. Gen 2013
12.39 MB/s ∼7% -1%
Sequential Write 256KB (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761
44 (min: 40, max: 46) MB/s ∼18%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
15.5 MB/s ∼6% -65%
NVIDIA Shield
14.2 MB/s ∼6% -68%
Acer Liquid S2
17.94 MB/s ∼7% -59%
LG G3
23.83 MB/s ∼10% -46%
Asus Transformer Pad TF103C-1B072A
17 MB/s ∼7% -61%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE-Version
18.08 MB/s ∼7% -59%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5
15.72 MB/s ∼6% -64%
Wiko Highway
14.97 MB/s ∼6% -66%
Motorola Moto X 1. Gen 2013
12.04 MB/s ∼5% -73%
Sequential Read 256KB (sort by value)
NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761
105 (min: 105, max: 113) MB/s ∼12%
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W
83 MB/s ∼9% -21%
NVIDIA Shield
61 MB/s ∼7% -42%
Acer Liquid S2
103.17 MB/s ∼12% -2%
LG G3
167.46 MB/s ∼19% +59%
Asus Transformer Pad TF103C-1B072A
91.12 MB/s ∼10% -13%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE-Version
96.42 MB/s ∼11% -8%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5
89.85 MB/s ∼10% -14%
Wiko Highway
73.93 MB/s ∼8% -30%
Motorola Moto X 1. Gen 2013
62.7 MB/s ∼7% -40%

Legend

 
NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761 Nvidia Tegra K1, NVIDIA Tegra K1 Kepler GPU, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
NVIDIA Shield Tablet P1761W Nvidia Tegra K1, NVIDIA Tegra K1 Kepler GPU, 16 GB iNAND Flash
 
NVIDIA Shield Nvidia Tegra 4, NVIDIA GeForce Tegra 4, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Acer Liquid S2 Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974, Qualcomm Adreno 330, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
LG G3 Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 MSM8974AC, Qualcomm Adreno 330, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Asus Transformer Pad TF103C-1B072A Intel Atom Z3745, Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE-Version Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 MSM8974, Qualcomm Adreno 330, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 Samsung Exynos 5420 Octa, ARM Mali-T628 MP6, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Wiko Highway Mediatek MT6592, ARM Mali-450 MP4, 16 GB iNAND Flash
 
Snapdragon 805 MDP/T Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 APQ8084, Qualcomm Adreno 420,
 
Apple iPad Air Apple A7, PowerVR G6430, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Apple iPad mini Retina Apple A7, PowerVR G6430, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Motorola Moto X 1. Gen 2013 Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro MSM8960DT, Qualcomm Adreno 320, 16 GB iNAND Flash

Audio

The headset port of our LTE test model was very susceptible to failure during a train journey. We often heard interference such as those in poorly shielded equipment when a telephone call is made. We did not find out whether the smartphone beside it or the LTE chip (without SIM) caused the problem. Interference did not occur in the office. Since we heard a quiet noise at the headphone out, the reason could be that the audio out is not sufficiently shielded.

Verdict

The LTE model of the Shield Tablet not only offers an additional radio chip but also a significantly faster flash memory with double the capacity, which is a significant advantage for everyday work. Since demanding Android games become bigger and bigger (e.g. Real Racing 3: 1.3 GB), we would not only recommend the review model to users requiring a radio module.

Otherwise, the LTE model inherited the strengths and weaknesses of the Wi-Fi model. Unique features like game streaming and integrated game recording (e.g. for Twitch), the impressive performance of the Tegra K1, the display with calibrated colors, and the well working DirectStylus2 stylus are only faced with average materials, stability, and battery life. However, the price is currently fair. So, the growing target group, Android gamers, is well served with the Shield Tablet LTE.

Shield Tablet LTE - due to its faster 32 GB flash memory, the device is also interesting for users without SIM cards.
Shield Tablet LTE - due to its faster 32 GB flash memory, the device is also interesting for users without SIM cards.
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Specifications

NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761 (Shield Series)
Processor
Nvidia Tegra K1 2.218 GHz
Memory
2048 MB 
Display
8 inch 16:10, 1920 x 1200 pixel, multi-touch, IPS, glossy: yes
Storage
32 GB eMMC Flash, 32 GB 
, 23 GB free
Soundcard
HD Audio
Connections
1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI, Audio Connections: headset, Card Reader: SD, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: GPS/GLONASS, 3-axis gyro, accelerometer, compass
Networking
802.11a/b/g/n (a/b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.0, Icera i500 4G / LTE Cat. 3 , LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 9.2 x 221 x 126 ( = 0.36 x 8.7 x 4.96 in)
Battery
20 Wh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Android 4.4 KitKat
Camera
Webcam: 5 MP front, 5 MP back
Primary Camera: 5 MPix
Secondary Camera: 5 MPix
Additional features
Speakers: stereo speakers, dual-bass reflex port, microphone, Keyboard: on-screen, Google Play, Trine 2, Dabbler, Camera Awesome, 12 Months Warranty, fanless
Weight
371 g ( = 13.09 oz / 0.82 pounds), Power Supply: 97 g ( = 3.42 oz / 0.21 pounds)
Price
299 Euro

 

The LTE and the Wi-Fi model have the same size and design.
The LTE and the Wi-Fi model have the same size and design.
The unlabeled cover has been replaced by the SIM slot in the LTE model (unfortunately, it is somewhat difficult to use).
The unlabeled cover has been replaced by the SIM slot in the LTE model (unfortunately, it is somewhat difficult to use).
The cover does not appear to be especially durable (just like the difficult to use micro-SD slot).
The cover does not appear to be especially durable (just like the difficult to use micro-SD slot).
US WLAN model with FCC labeling versus European LTE model with CE labeling.
US WLAN model with FCC labeling versus European LTE model with CE labeling.
Gaming outdoors - not a problem with the LTE model of the Shield Tablet.
Gaming outdoors - not a problem with the LTE model of the Shield Tablet.

Compare Prices

NVIDIA Shield Tablet LTE P1761 - 02/16/2016 v5
Klaus Hinum

Chassis
76%
Keyboard
71 / 80 → 89%
Pointing Device
89%
Connectivity
46 / 65 → 71%
Weight
85 / 40-88 → 94%
Battery
85%
Display
85%
Games Performance
61 / 68 → 90%
Application Performance
52 / 76 → 68%
Temperature
86%
Noise
95%
Audio
80 / 91 → 88%
Camera
64 / 85 → 75%
Average
75%
87%
Tablet - Weighted Average
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Nvidia Shield Tablet LTE Review Update
Klaus Hinum, 2014-10-11 (Update: 2016-07-13)