Xiaomi Pad 5 review: Premium experience for a reasonable price

Rating

There are not as many Android tablets on the market today as there were a few years ago. However, some manufacturers, including Xiaomi, still make such devices. During the last few weeks, we’ve had the chance to test and use one of the latest tablets from Xiaomi, namely the Pad 5. It’s a good looking tablet, at a reasonable price, and we’d like to share our opinions about it. If you want to know what the Xiaomi Pad 5 can do and whether it’s worth buying, read this review and find out:

Xiaomi Pad 5: Who is it good for?

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is an excellent choice for:

  • People who want an Android tablet that looks stylish
  • Anyone who wants a fast Android tablet that never lags
  • Those who want to pay a reasonable price for an excellent device

Pros and cons

There are many positives about the Xiaomi Pad 5:

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  • It looks beautiful, and the build quality is premium
  • The display is bright, and the colors are accurate
  • Extensive battery life and 33W fast charging
  • The cameras are of good quality for a tablet
  • Its performance is top-notch
  • Reasonable price

There are a few downsides also:

  • There’s no fingerprint reader on the tablet
  • It has no 3.5mm audio jack
Product rating 5/5

Verdict

Xiaomi Pad 5 is one of the best and most well-balanced Android tablets we’ve had the pleasure to test in the last few years. It looks elegant yet durable, and the performance it offers is high-grade. Taking its price into consideration, we believe that the Xiaomi Pad 5 is a best buy option for this Christmas shopping season. If you’re looking for an excellent Android tablet, one that’s powerful enough to run any app or game well, but don’t want to break your piggy bank, go for the Xiaomi Pad 5.

Unboxing the Xiaomi Pad 5

The Xiaomi Pad 5 arrives in a relatively small package considering that we’re talking about an 11-inch tablet. The box is made from high-quality white cardboard and features a minimalistic design with only the tablet’s name and the company’s logo printed on it.

The box of the Xiaomi Pad 5

Inside the box, you get all the essential things: the Xiaomi Pad 5 Android tablet, its charger and USB-A to C cable, user manual, and warranty documents.

Xiaomi Pad 5: What's inside the box

Unboxing the Xiaomi Pad 5 is a fast and straightforward experience, but a pleasant one nonetheless.

Hardware specifications

The Xiaomi Pad 5 features an 11” IPS display with a WQHD+ resolution of 1600 x 2560 pixels. The screen has a 16:10 aspect ratio and a pixel density of about 274 ppi. Although it is not an AMOLED display, the IPS LCD on the Xiaomi Pad 5 has excellent color reproduction, a fast 120Hz refresh rate, and support for HDR10 and Dolby Vision.

A view of the Xiaomi Pad 5

The tablet is powered by a higher-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 860 chipset with an octa-core processor. The CPU features one Kryo 485 Gold core running at 2.96 GHz, three Kryo 485 Gold cores at 2.42 GHz, and four Kryo 485 Silver cores running at a frequency of 1.78 GHz. The graphics are handled by an Adreno 640 chip.

Xiaomi Pad 5: Processor information

In terms of storage, while the Xiaomi Pad 5 can come with 128 GB or 256GB of internal flash memory, the RAM amount is the same for both versions: 6GB of RAM. Unfortunately, the tablet doesn’t have a card slot, so you can’t add more storage space. Thus, we recommend you get the more generous 256GB version if your budget allows it.

Hardware details including information about memory

Xiaomi Pad 5 measures 254.7 x 166.3 x 6.9 mm in height x width x thickness (10.03 x 6.55 x 0.27 in), and weighs 511 grams (or 1.13 lb). Its battery has a very generous capacity of 8720 mAh, and the tablet supports fast charging at 33 Watts and Power Delivery 3.0. According to Xiaomi’s presentation, the Pad 5 tablet should last for more than 16 hours of video playback and more than 10 hours of gaming! Check the benchmarks section of this review to find out more about the battery life. 🙂

Xiaomi Pad 5 supports 33W fast charging

On the software side, the Pad 5 comes with Android 11 and MIUI 12.5, a custom interface for Android made by Xiaomi.

On the front, Xiaomi Pad 5 has an 8-megapixel camera, while on its back, a 13-megapixel one. The main camera also has a Dual-LED flash, supports HDR, and can shoot panoramas if that’s something you want from a tablet. 🙂

The main camera on the Xiaomi Pad 5

In terms of connectivity and ports, the Xiaomi Pad 5 offers Wi-Fi 5 on 2.4 and 5 GHz wireless bands, Bluetooth v5.0, and a USB Type-C port. Sadly, we don’t get a regular 3.5 mm stereo audio jack.

If you want to check the full list of technical specifications, visit this webpage: Xiaomi Pad 5 - Specs.

Design and user experience

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is a stylish Android tablet with great build quality and a competitive price (about 400 USD). While its body is built on an aluminum frame, the back is covered by a flat semi-transparent plastic cover on which light refracts in nice-looking patterns. On the front, the screen has slim bezels and covers most of the surface. The tablet is well balanced in terms of weight, and the brushed aluminum on its edges offers a good grip.

The Xiaomi Pad 5 tablet

The only thing you find on the back of the tablet is the camera system, on the top-right corner, in portrait mode. Nearby, but on the edges, there are the power button and the volume rocker. They have relatively strong feedback and are slightly protruding, so it’s easy to locate them.

The buttons found on the Xiaomi Pad 5 Android tablet

The cameras found on the Xiaomi Pad 5 are useful and pretty OK if you ask us. The front camera is useful when you have to join video conferences, but it’s also quite capable of shooting good-quality selfies. The main 13MP camera on the back of the tablet does an excellent job when you use it to shoot photos in bright light outdoors, as well as for recording videos. In dim or darker environments, it’s decent, but nothing special. Still, it’s worth noting that the Camera app, as simple as it is, includes a Night Mode which improves things quite a bit.

Camera app on the Xiaomi Pad 5

One of the things that impressed us about the Xiaomi Pad 5 is the high quality of its speakers. It comes with not two, but four speakers positioned towards its corners. The tablet supports Dolby Atmos, and the speakers deliver well-balanced sound. If you turn the volume to the max, the speakers get really loud, but they don’t distort sound. If you’re looking for a tablet to use for entertainment, watching movies, or maybe listening to music, the Xiaomi Pad 5 is an excellent choice.

Two of the four speakers on the Xiaomi Pad 5

To continue on the same note, the display is premium too. Although not AMOLED, but IPS LCD, it delivers vibrant colors, high brightness and contrast, and wide viewing angles. It also supports HDR10 and Dolby Vision, which make movies look great. Considering that both Netflix and other streaming services offer more and more movies and TV series in HDR, it’s worth choosing a tablet that supports it.

The screen of the Xiaomi Pad 5 Android tablet

We had the Xiaomi Pad 5 in testing for quite a while now, and one other thing that we noticed about it is its long battery life. Using it daily for browsing, email, chatting, and watching movies on Netflix (for about 2 hours in the evening), the tablet managed to get by easily for two, two and a half days before we had to charge it.

The Xiaomi Pad 5 feels like a premium Android tablet. Its design is simple and beautiful, the build quality is great, and we like its display and sound system a lot.

Android 11, MIUI 12, and bundled apps

The Xiaomi Pad 5 comes with the Android 11 and Xiaomi’s own MIUI (version 12.5.8) user interface on top. MIUI adds quite a few personalization options to the default Android experience and, overall, we could say that it makes Android look much nicer than stock, although it also tries to resemble iOS a bit too much.

Xiaomi Pad 5 comes with Android 11 and EMUI 12

One of the things we like most about MIUI is the typography. The fonts used by Xiaomi are thin and look stylish, which we can’t really say about Android’s standard fonts.

The lock screen on the Xiaomi Pad 5 tablet

The control center is clearly inspired by Apple’s iOS, and although it can take a few minutes to adjust to, once you do, you will certainly appreciate its elegance and ease of use. It’s the little things that make the difference, like the better, more useful, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi buttons.

Quick action buttons on the Xiaomi Pad 5

By default, MIUI puts all your apps and games on the home screen, but there is an option you can turn on if you want to use an app drawer instead.

The home screen of the Xiaomi Pad 5

As for the preinstalled apps, besides the regular ones from Google, Xiaomi also bundles a series of its own in-house and other third-party apps:

  • Cleaner - a tool that can delete cache and obsolete files, as well as clean the tablet’s memory
  • File Manager - an app for managing the files and folders on your tablet
  • Mi Browser - Xiaomi’s own browser, promising fast speed and secure browsing
  • Mi Video - a local video player, which can also be used for streaming services
  • Mi Music - a local audio player with streaming support
  • Netflix - the popular video streaming service that needs no introduction
  • Recorder - a simple audio recorder app
  • Scanner - a QR scanning app
  • Security - a dashboard for the security, app, and device management
  • Services & feedback - an application for submitting feedback and basic troubleshooting
  • ShareMe - an app useful for transferring files via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi without connecting to the internet
  • Weather - shows you the forecast for your region or any other place you choose
  • WPS Office - a software suite for document viewing and editing

The Xiaomi Pad 5 comes with Android 11 and Xiaomi’s MIUI interface on top. It adds some nice visuals and many small improvements to the standard Android UI. It’s also worth noting that the tablet doesn’t come with countless unwanted apps, which is a good thing.

Performance in benchmarks

To get an objective overview of the performance offered by the Xiaomi Pad 5, we also ran a few benchmarks. Here’s what we found:

In Geekbench 5, the Xiaomi Pad 5 managed a 785 points single-core score and a 2729 points multi-core score. These numbers are quite impressive, showing that the Xiaomi Pad 5 is a fast device. On single-core, it’s about as fast as a Samsung Galaxy S20+ smartphone (equipped with an Exynos chipset) and slightly more powerful than a Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra on multi-core, for example.

Xiaomi Pad 5: Geekbench benchmark results

In AnTuTu v9, the Xiaomi Pad 5 got a score of 581849 points. It confirms the fact that it’s a powerful Android tablet, offering top-notch performance for an excellent price.

Xiaomi Pad 5: AnTuTu benchmark results

Next, we also ran the 3DMark benchmark to see how the tablet fares in games. The results, shown in the following screenshot, tell us that the Xiaomi Pad 5 can run even the most demanding games today without stuttering.

Xiaomi Pad 5: 3DMark benchmark results

Moving on to the productivity aspects, we ran PCMark’s Work 3.0 benchmark to see what score the Xiaomi Pad 5 gets in real-life activities such as browsing the web, editing documents, or video conferencing. The result we got was quite impressive: 11298 points. It shows that this is a great tablet for work or school, as it has more than enough computing power for any daily activities.

Xiaomi Pad 5: Benchmark results in PCMark Work 3.0

Finally, we used PCMark to check how much time the battery can last in daily use. The benchmark proved that the Xiaomi Pad 5 offers an autonomy of at least 15 hours and 19 minutes in common tasks. Although for heavy-duty activities such as gaming, it might not last as long, the battery is very impressive and will easily last you for more than a day.

Xiaomi Pad 5: PCMark battery life benchmark results

The benchmarks we ran on the Xiaomi Pad 5 tell us that this is better than any mid-range Android tablet. Although we wouldn’t classify it as a high-end device as its hardware is not quite the latest on the market, its chipset is capable of delivering high-end performance. Right now, there’s no app or game that can make this tablet bend its knee. 🙂

Are you considering buying the Xiaomi Pad 5?

Now you know what we like and what we don’t like about the Xiaomi Pad 5. You know that it’s an excellent tablet, one that not only looks great and is well built, but also one that offers top-notch performance for a reasonable price. Before you close this review, tell us what you think about the Xiaomi Pad 5. Do you intend to buy this Android tablet? Let us know your opinion about it in the comments section below.

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