After several generations of tablets without any leaving China, Xiaomi finally decided to release this format internationally: the Xiaomi Pad 5 is the first of these devices. Good design, quality materials and undoubted inspiration in the iPad . We analyze it.
Choosing a tablet tends to tip Apple’s field valuations, the iPad has become strong in that segment. Despite this, in Android there are no bad examples of tablets, there is the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 + , for example. And Xiaomi enters this segment in the best way it knows how: with great features at a reasonable price . The Xiaomi Pad 5 is such that so.
Data sheet of the Xiaomi Pad 5
|SCREEN||11-inch IPS LCD with WQHD + resolution (2560 x 1600 dots), 120 Hz refresh, 1500: 1 contrast ratio, 16:10 aspect ratio and compatibility with Dolby Vision content|
|PROCESSOR||Qualcomm Snapdragon 860 with 8 cores and 7 nm photolithography|
|PRINCIPAL MEMORY||6 GB|
|STORAGE||128 or 256 GB UFS 3.1|
|FRONTAL CAMERA||8 megapixel sensor and optics with aperture value f / 2.0
Video recording at 1080p and 30 FPS
|REAR CAMERA||13 megapixel sensor and optics with aperture value f / 2.0
Video recording up to 4K at 30 FPS
|ACCESSORIES||Xiaomi Smart Pen digital pen. It is not included in the package and costs 99.99 euros|
Four 16 x 20mm speakers
Dolby Atmos processing
|OS||MIUI 12.5 for Xiaomi Pad based on Android 11|
|WIRELESS CONNECTIVITY||Wi-Fi 802.11ac
|SENSORS||Gyroscope, accelerometer, proximity sensor and digital compass|
22.5 watt charger included in the package (the tablet can charge with a maximum power of 33 watts)
|DIMENSIONS||254.7 x 166.3 x 6.9 mm|
|COLORS||Cosmic gray and pearl white|
|PRICE||From 369 euros|
Design: slim, attractive and clearly inspired by the iPad
The Xiaomi Pad 5 is a tablet that surprises visually and once you hold it for the first time in your hand: it does not weigh too much, it retains the aluminum frame to give that “premium” feeling that is appreciated in a device with high characteristics and … There is no doubt that Xiaomi was clearly inspired by the iPad family, especially the iPad Air .
The resemblance to the competition is obvious no matter how much the rear face of the Xiaomi Pad 5 sees its materials reduced: the rear finish is made of plastic . Its touch is pleasant, it presents metallic glints in the white color of our model, it does not catch fingerprints and it does not add extra weight to the device.
The front is largely occupied by its 11-inch LCD screen. The frames are very small for a tablet, the front camera is in the upper frame and the biometric blocking methods are absent: neither fingerprint reader nor 3D facial recognition. Xiaomi does offer face unlock with the front camera , much less secure.
|XIAOMI PAD 5||SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S7 +||SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S7 FE||IPAD AIR (2020)||HUAWEI MATEPAD PRO (2020)|
2,560 x 1,600 pixels
2,800 x 1,752 pixels
2,560 x 1,600 pixels
2,360 x 1,640 pixels
2,560 x 1,600 pixels
|DIMENSIONS||254.7 x 166.3 x 6.9 mm||285 x 185 x 5.7 mm||185 x 284.8 x 6.3 mm||247.6 x 178.5 x 6.1 cm||246 x 159 x 7.2 mm|
|WEIGHT||511 grams||575 grams||608 grams||458 grams||460 grams|
|BATTERY||8,720 mAh||10,090 mAh||10,090 mAh||7,606 mAh||7,250 mAh|
On the right side of the tablet (as viewed vertically) are the volume buttons (above) and the magnetic attachment of the Xiaomi Smart Pen ; the top edge shows the power button (right) and two of the four external speakers; On the left edge Xiaomi places a magnetic pin connector to hook the keyboard cover and on the lower edge the USB C connector and the two remaining speakers are located.
The rear face of the Xiaomi Pad 5 appears dominated by the plastic sheet with the vertical photographic module in the upper left corner. The general appearance exudes attractiveness, elegance and very good finishes : the Xiaomi Pad 5 surprises for the better in terms of design.
It is not very annoying during use since its weight is not exaggerated, but it does make it uncomfortable to hold it for a long time (reading in bed, for example). On the outside it gives the hit as a high-end tablet. It can even be mistaken for an iPad , as it happened when we left the device to friends and family.
Screen: large diagonal as a flag, high refreshment as a weapon
Although the design makes clear Xiaomi’s intentions to aim for the highest range, in terms of screen it maintains the balance in panel performance while raising details that strengthen the fluidity of the device . There you have the 120 Hz refresh rate, a feature that is appreciated while traveling on websites and social apps, for example.
The 11-inch diagonal corresponds to an IPS LCD panel with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 pixels. It offers a high maximum brightness for a tablet (500 nits), it allows the visualization of the content outdoors as long as it is not directly affected by light, the automatic changes in brightness are somewhat lazy, the minimum brightness is very high for twilight situations (At night it is annoying to use the tablet, even in reading mode), the LED reflects the screen evenly and there is a certain lack of clarity with the naked eye.
Xiaomi calibrates its Pad 5 with somewhat cold tones as standard, there is also a certain saturation in the colors. From the screen settings you can customize the temperature and color reproduction, although the density of the screen cannot be reduced : the icons look very large on the screen, there is also plenty of space on the interface.
We have not encountered any graphical problems using the Xiaomi Pad 5: the system works very smoothly, the animations look great and the touch control does not pose any problem . Viewing angles are good. And the tactile use is complemented by the Xiaomi Smart Pen, the stylus compatible with the Pad 5. We will talk about it later.
Power: an Android tablet suitable even for “gamers”
Opting for an Android tablet usually implies a certain sacrifice in the event that the buyer decides to focus on power. In general, these devices do not usually offer a processor with high characteristics . And, if it is included, the price rises accordingly.
Xiaomi manages to maintain the balance between the power of the chosen processor and the final price of the tablet. There’s the more than decent Snapdragon 860 , an SoC that can chew on high-quality graphics like jelly beans. This is appreciated when playing games like Genshin Impact , for example: the Xiaomi Pad 5 supports the highest settings without the operation being hampered .
It is powerful, very fast, stable, the fluidity when moving the interface and the jump between applications is high and, on the contrary, we have not appreciated a high temperature, not even during long gaming sessions : although it does get hot, in no case does it get hot. to be annoying. The Xiaomi Pad 5 dissipates the heat from the processor well, also that generated during charging.
Let’s see how the benchmarks of the Xiaomi Pad 5 are.
A biometric security system is greatly missed, even if it was a capacitive fingerprint reader on the side. For the rest, it is a tablet with which multimedia content is greatly enjoyed, both movies and series and games. The Xiaomi Pad 5 is perfect for gaming , for example. And not only for its graphic capacity.
Sound: unbeatable in its price segment
Offering four external speakers already leaves indications that the Xiaomi Pad 5 does not leave the sound to chance. Quite the contrary: external audio is powerful, bass is boosted , does not distort excessively at maximum volume, and Dolby Atmos support brings improvements in surround sound capabilities. Watching a movie without headphones is a joy.
In terms of external audio there is no major problem, neither by power nor by quality: we have measured a maximum of 93 dB of sound pressure at about three centimeters from the tablet without distortions appearing in the music.
Although the four speakers stand out on their own merits, there is an absence that ends up subtracting points from the Xiaomi Pad 5: lacking a 3.5 mm Jack . To listen to the tablet with headphones, you have to choose a USB C adapter (the DAC is in the device) or connect a Bluetooth headset. In both cases, the audio quality is at a good level: clear, balanced, with just the right bass boost, and compatible with Hi-Res sound.
The sound settings offer activation of Dolby Atmos and customization of the equalization with a 10-band equalizer (includes presets ). In addition, Xiaomi includes improvements for its own headphones with the “Mi Sound” menu, in the sound settings of the tablet.
The compatibility with Bluetooth codecs is very wide: apart from the SBC and AAC, the Xiaomi Pad 5 includes aptX (“normal”, HD, Adaptive and TWS +), LDAC and LHDC.
Battery: good holding, slow charging
The 8,720 mAh battery sounds good on paper and ends up behaving as expected. In this sense, we cannot say that the Xiaomi Pad 5 offers doubts in autonomy: during our tests, and with a tablet use (multimedia, web browsing, some gaming), it lasted several days on average .
The 120 Hz refresh rate supposes a decrease in autonomy, around 20-25% with respect to the use without having it activated. On average it has exceeded eight hours with the screen on, a couple or three hours when we have returned to 60 Hz. From our point of view, the greater fluidity of the system and displacements compensates .
While autonomy is not a problem, charging the Xiaomi Pad 5 is more problematic. At no point does it get hot, not even using the device while charging. Although yes, the 22.5 W that its charger offers make recharging it from zero to 100% exceed two hours . Although fast charging is not so common in tablets, given the roomy battery Xiaomi could have squeezed in more power.
Below are the charging times with the charger that the tablet brings in the box.
- 5 minute charge : 4% battery.
- 10 minute charge : 9% battery.
- 20 minute charge : 17% battery.
- 30 minute charge : 26% battery.
- 50 minute charge : 44% battery.
- Total : 2 hours and 2 minutes.
Software: MIUI adapted to the tablet format is a great advantage
Xiaomi could not leave out MIUI in its international tablet, the layer is closely linked to the manufacturer. Although yes, adapting the interface to the big screen made the brand create a specific adaptation: MIUI for Pad . A similar move to Apple’s with the iPad operating system . And with an almost cloned design.
The first moments using the Xiaomi Pad 5 clearly recall the experience with the iPad. Use by gestures very similar, double screen to use a couple of applications simultaneously, animations adapt very well to 11 inches and support for floating windows allows multitasking to be greatly extended . As usual, not all software supports dual screen and floating window.
MIUI sees the use as a tablet expanded at the same time that Xiaomi cuts different functionalities to which we were already accustomed on its mobiles. For example, Google Discover is not in the desktop settings , nor is it possible to choose the layout of the grid. The direct access to the settings is missing from the notification area and it is somewhat annoying to move between the quick settings and the notifications themselves.
MIUI is not overloaded with excessive “bloatware” beyond Xiaomi’s own applications. The cape itself is somewhat heavy, it is also very insistent when it comes to remembering all the services of the brand . It is kept updated to Android 11 with MIUI 12.5.2 . And with a somewhat old security patch as of this writing: July 2021.
The Xiaomi Pad 5 does not include the Xiaomi Smart Pen as standard, it must be purchased separately (worth 99.99 euros ). The stylus is anchored to the side of the tablet thanks to the magnets (it is not as firm as in the iPad and rotates on its axis); moment in which the induction recharge is activated. The animation of the reload and its design are exact to those of the iPad and Apple Pencil.
The touch of writing and drawing is very successful: tracing on the screen of the Xiaomi Pad 5 with its Smart Pen is very close to the experience using pencil and paper. Yes we have noticed a certain latency between the line and the drawing on the screen : the lines take a few milliseconds to appear, just enough to perceive a certain lack of synchronization in the drawing.
One of the drawbacks of the Xiaomi Smart Pen is that it needs Bluetooth to work, first you have to pair the pen like any accessory (it does not work directly). And there is another big drawback: if the Bluetooth is turned off, the pen does not work . Therefore, in situations where it is mandatory to activate the strict airplane mode, it will not be possible to use the pen.
Between the pen and the tablet there should be a full symbiosis, but it is not like that: the Xiaomi Pad 5 hardly offers any software with which to take advantage of the stylus . The brand includes a note app with which you can write freehand and draw. And now: for the rest of the uses you have to trust the Google Play store. And Android is not exactly mad at artistic drawing, there are not excessive options to choose from (for comparison, Samsung offers numerous apps and tools with which to squeeze the S Pen on the Galaxy Tab S ).
Apart from the lack of applications to take advantage of the Xiaomi Smart Pen, the tablet itself offers hardly any tools . MIUI for Pad supports controlling the tablet with the stylus, just as if it were a finger (including control gestures). And it allows you to take screenshots by pressing a button (the top one) and open the notes app to write (the bottom button). Up to this point.
Our experience with the software has been bittersweet. It is true that MIUI for Pad is very well adapted to the tablet, its use with the pencil is also enhanced . But there are much less tools and applications that make up for the extra expense of the stylus. Unless the future owner really wants to draw with his tablet, the extra expense of the Xiaomi Smart Pen is not highly recommended.
Photography: good enough for a tablet
Although the photographic section is not vital in any tablet, it never hurts to do a little review of its behavior in the field of multimedia capture. Obviously, the Xiaomi Pad 5 does not want to replace any phone: both for the performance of the camera and the exaggerated size of the device, photography is not the strong point of the Xiaomi Pad 5 .
Okay, it doesn’t aspire to become the main camera, but it gets you out of a lot of trouble if you have to take a photo (or video) and there is no other device at hand. During the day it captures with sufficient clarity, the focus is fast and effective , the white balance does not do a bad job (it even has HDR) and it even maintains a good level of detail in the background.
The Xiaomi Pad 5’s camera application is shortened compared to the software of the phones. There is no portrait mode, no professional settings or playful modes . Capture at night is included, although with quite debatable results. Not for nothing is it a tablet.
The front camera shows the drop in quality. Selfies are bright, yet filled with watercolors even in broad daylight. For video calls it is perfectly valid.
Below you have a sample of photographs taken with the Xiaomi Pad 5.
Xiaomi Pad 5, the opinion of Xataka
The sensations that it has left us after the weeks of testing were very positive, also the constant déjà vu of being handling an iPad instead of an Android tablet. Xiaomi has managed to get very close to what the competition conveys while maximizing the price without losing key features along the way. For 399 euros it is a very good option, even more so when it can be purchased cheaper with specific offers.
It is true that the Xiaomi Pad 5 looks like an iPad in sight, that the MIUI for Pad interface moves the same as iPad OS and that even the pencil offers the same window and message by anchoring itself to the side of the tablet. But this similarity doesn’t have to be bad as it adds value to the big screen device itself.
It is powerful, the screen is large, it sounds fantastic and even the camera provides plenty of quality to be a tablet. On the negative side, we highlight the heaviness of the layer, how slow it is to charge the battery, a certain lack of sharpness for what is reproduced on the screen and the lack of applications with which to get more out of the Xiaomi Smart Pen .
The Xiaomi Pad 5 is an excellent purchase for those who are looking for an Android tablet and want it as balanced as possible in price and performance . Unfortunately, it is difficult to recommend it to someone who is looking for a tablet without more: the iPad is still a better option.
- Powerful and very fast, it is a delight to play on it.
- The software is well adapted to the stylus.
- Good autonomy, even with 120 Hz.
- Charging is too slow.
- There is a lack of applications and tools with which to take advantage of the Xiaomi Smart Pen.