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Redmi Pad SE review: Basic and cheap

Redmi Pad SE review: Basic and cheap

Redmi Pad SE

The Redmi Pad SE is an inexpensive 11-inch Android tablet that performs reasonably well for its specs. At S$249, it's roughly half the price of the Xiaomi Pad 6, but just about everything, from the display to the processor to the battery, have been downgraded accordingly. I think it's fine if you're not too picky about performance, and just want a tablet for basic, day-to-day computing.

Quick specs

  • 11-inch IPS LCD (1,920 x 1,200 pixels, 30 to 90Hz)
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 chip with 4GB RAM and 128GB storage (up to 1TB microSD expandable storage)
  • 8,000mAh battery (10W charging)
  • 478g

Given its budget slant, I wasn't surprised that the Redmi Pad SE's 11-inch display is an IPS LCD. And it's far from the best, with some colour shift, and distracting reflections when viewing from the sides. It doesn't help that the automatic screen brightness is really aggressive at turning down the brightness at every opportunity. The screen tops out at 400 nits, which isn't too shabby, though there's no HDR support. Xiaomi says the refresh rate goes up to 90Hz, but I noticed that it remained at 60Hz while browsing the web with Chrome. It turns out that 90Hz is available only in certain apps, such as WhatsApp and Mi Browser. There are also four speakers in total — two at each end. They support Dolby Atmos, and sound pretty good. When it comes to watching movies, I was more impressed with the audio than the display.

Redmi Pad SE
The quad Dolby Atmos speakers work pretty well. Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

Unlike the display, the tablet feels premium, thanks to its all-aluminium chassis. It's fairly handy at less than 500g. I also prefer its smooth matte finish to a glossy fingerprint-friendly version. Besides the USB-C charging port, the Redmi Pad SE also has a headphone jack. There isn't a fingerprint sensor, but you can use the front-facing camera to unlock the device — it's just not that secure. This 5MP camera is also on the longer edge of the tablet, and is hence optimised for use in landscape orientation. It's decent: Not too noisy, images and videos are just a bit soft, and not sufficiently crisp and detailed. As for the 8MP rear camera, it's not terrible, but I wouldn't use it over any smartphone camera.

Redmi Pad SE
Credit: Vincent Chang/Can Buy or Not

Powering this budget slate is a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 processor with 4GB of memory and 128GB of storage. And it shows, especially with the extra second or two it takes to open an app. Games like Honkai: Star Rail and Vampire Survivors were playable on medium to high settings. In addition, the Redmi Pad SE runs cool, and performed consistently in benchmarks without dropping off due to thermal issues. In 3DMark's Wild Life Extreme Stress test, temperatures peaked at a comfy 35 degrees Celsius. Basically, it's just not very fast, which is understandable for a S$249 tablet. It comes with a 8000mAh battery that managed 6hr 36min in PCMark's battery test. This is similar to our result for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra. But with its 10W charging speed, it will take a while to fully replenish the battery.

I feel the 128GB of storage on my review set is sufficient, seeing as the Redmi Pad SE comes with a microSD card slot supporting up to 1TB of expandable storage. It could do with more memory, though. The good news is that Xiaomi is selling the 8GB+256GB version in Singapore. At S$249, the Redmi Pad SE is very affordable for a 11-inch tablet. Yes, it's basic in features and performance, but the metal chassis and build quality are solid. And the audio is surprisingly decent. For entertainment and basic computing, this tablet gets the job done. Get it now from Lazada, and Shopee.

See Also

Note: Review unit provided by Xiaomi.

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Decent performance at a budget

Available at Lazada
Available at Shopee

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