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Review of the budget tablet Digma Pro Hit 108E

25.12.2023 09:41

Specifications

 Digma Pro Hit 108EDigma Pro 1800F Tiger 4GHuawei MatePad SE (2022)
ScreenIPS, 10.1″, 1920×1200 (224 ppi)IPS, 10.4″, 2000×1200 (224 ppi)IPS, 10.4″, 2000×1200 (224 ppi)
SoC (processor)Unisoc Tiger T616 (8 cores, 2+6, maximum frequency 2 GHz)Unisoc Tiger T618 (8 cores, 2+6, maximum frequency 2 GHz)Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 (8 cores, 4+4, maximum frequency 2.4 GHz)
RAM8 GB8 GB3/4 GB
Flash memory128 GB256 GB32/64/128 GB
Memory card supportyes (microSD standard, up to 1 TB)yes (microSD standard, up to 128 GB)yes (microSD standard, up to 512 GB)
ConnectorsUSB 2.0 (USB-C connector) without external storage supportUSB 2.0 (USB-C connector) with external storage support, 3.5 mm headset jackUSB 2.0 (USB-C connector) with external storage support, 3.5 mm headset jack
Camerasfront (5 MP, video 720p) and rear (13 MP, video 1080p)front (5 MP, video 720p) and rear (13 MP, video 1080p)front (2 MP, video 720p) and rear (5 MP, video 1080p)
InternetWi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac MIMO (2.4 + 5 GHz), 4GWi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac MIMO (2.4 + 5 GHz), 4GWi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac MIMO (2.4 + 5 GHz), optional 3G/4G
Hardware authorizationin the facein the face
Cover-keyboard/stylus supportno nono nono no
operating systemAndroid 12 with proprietary shellAndroid 11 with proprietary shellHuawei HarmonyOS 3
Battery8000 mAh6000 mAh5100 mAh
Dimensions241×160×8.0 mm246×157×7.5 mm247×157×7.9 mm
Weight472 g460 g440 g

As you can see, in general the characteristics are similar, and almost the only difference between the new model and the Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G is a more capacious battery.

Let's move on to face-to-face acquaintance.

Packaging, accessories and accessories

The tablet comes in a thick cardboard box.

The tablet comes in a thick cardboard box.

The package includes, in addition to a leaflet and warranty card, a power adapter with support for fast charging, a USB-C to USB-C cable, a case and an adapter from USB-C to a 3.5 mm minijack.

The package includes, in addition to a leaflet and warranty card, a power adapter with support for fast charging, a USB-C to USB-C cable, a case and an adapter from USB-C to a 3.5 mm minijack.

We especially welcome the presence of an adapter. Since the tablet does not have a 3.5 mm headset jack, this solution is especially relevant for owners of wired headphones.

We especially welcome the presence of an adapter. Since the tablet does not have a 3.5 mm headset jack, this solution is especially relevant for owners of wired headphones.

The power adapter supports fast charging, but the maximum power is only 20 W (12 V 1.66 A), which is quite a bit by today's standards. And another important detail: we were able to ensure the functioning of fast charging only through the supplied cable.

The power adapter supports fast charging, but the maximum power is only 20 W (12 V 1.66 A), which is quite a bit by today's standards. And another important detail: we were able to ensure the functioning of fast charging only through the supplied cable.

Well, a few words about the case. It is made in the form of a book and covers the device on both sides. True, three of the four side edges remain open, but the “outer” corners are protected by special sides (they also hold the device inside the case), so if the tablet falls, the impact will most likely fall on them.

Well, a few words about the case. It is made in the form of a book and covers the device on both sides. True, three of the four side edges remain open, but the “outer” corners are protected by special sides (they also hold the device inside the case), so if the tablet falls, the impact will most likely fall on them.

The material of the case is artificial leather, obviously not very expensive, with a distinct smell. But this is not to say that the cover is unpleasant to the touch. Rather, it evokes neutral sensations.

The material of the case is artificial leather, obviously not very expensive, with a distinct smell. But this is not to say that the cover is unpleasant to the touch. Rather, it evokes neutral sensations.

The case can form a stand for reading and typing.

The case can form a stand for reading and typing.

Alas, the manufacturer does not make keyboard cases for its devices. But the free cover is useful.

Alas, the manufacturer does not make keyboard cases for its devices. But the free cover is useful.

Design

The appearance of the device has a strict and minimalistic design. Of particular note is the thin metal body with a small plastic insert for the antenna and painted to match the metal trim. The edges of the device are flat, the corners are rounded, and there are no protruding elements characteristic of modern models with a retractable camera platform. In this case, the appearance is represented only by a minimal camera lens and a small flash next to it.

True, the manufacturer succumbed to fashion in another way: it abandoned the 3.5 mm headset jack. We consider this a dubious decision, at least for an inexpensive model, but the adapter included in this case mitigates the problem. Connecting wired headphones to this tablet is quite convenient.

The only connector present on the device is USB-C. However, unfortunately, it only has USB 2.0 speed and does not support direct connection of external drives. This limitation, although not critical due to the presence of a memory card slot, is still noticeable. It is interesting to note that there is some inconsistency when using the tablet with a Mac: while with Windows it connects without problems and allows you to transfer files, with a Mac there are difficulties limited only to charging the device. Even after trying to change the tablet settings for “Copy files” when connected to a PC via Android File Transfer, after rebooting the tablet we are again faced with the ability to only charge. This aspect is worth considering for Mac users.

However, let's return to the design of the device itself. The width of the frame around the screen is quite significant: 12 mm if you take into account the sides, and 11 mm if you measure only the glass itself. Next to the front camera there is an indicator that glows green when the device is turned on and red when charging. Note that the tablet does not have facial recognition functions: the front camera is used exclusively for video calling and selfies.

The device's stereo speakers are located symmetrically along both short edges.

Dynamic speakers provide fairly clear sound in the mid-frequency range, but, of course, talking about deep bass and using the tablet to listen to music without connecting to external audio systems is impractical. It is also worth noting one abnormal situation: twice during testing, the sound system stopped working completely, and a quiet noise or hiss was heard from one speaker. The problem was resolved by rebooting the device. The manufacturer assured us that this is a feature of the test model, and devices presented in retail stores do not encounter similar problems.

The sound volume is controlled by separate buttons located on the top edge right at the left corner. And near the same corner on the left side there is a power button. It's not a very good idea to make all three buttons feel almost the same to the touch. It's easy to confuse them. True, the situation is saved by the fact that the volume buttons are next to each other. And yet the decision seems dubious. But it looks beautiful on the outside.

Well, on the right side there is a slot for two Nano-SIM cards and a microSD memory card.

As for microphones, the device has two of them: on top near the right corner and on the bottom near the left.

In general, the design of the tablet looks attractive, and if it were not for the redundant, in our opinion, inscriptions on the back, we could call the appearance minimalistic and stylish.

The main problem, however, is not the inscriptions, but the limited functionality of the USB-C port and the strange behavior of the speakers. I would like to believe that at least the speakers in production samples will work normally.

Screen

The image on the screen is represented by a glass plate with a smooth, mirror-like surface that is scratch-resistant. The anti-glare properties of this screen seem to be better than that of the Google Nexus 7 (2013), as indicated by slight ghosting of reflected objects. This effect indicates the use of OGS (One Glass Solution) technology, where there is no air gap between the glass and the LCD matrix, which improves readability in bright conditions.

The outer surface of the screen uses a special oleophobic coating to remove fingerprints more effectively and slow down their appearance compared to regular glass.

The maximum screen brightness reaches only 270 cd/m², which can be difficult in sunlight. However, through manual adjustment, the user can adjust the brightness to suit the current conditions. The auto-brightness feature when lighting changes also works adequately, and the screen backlight doesn't flicker at any brightness level.

This tablet is equipped with an IPS matrix. The microphotographs show a typical subpixel structure for an IPS matrix.

Here are photos in which identical images are displayed on the screens of this tablet and the Nexus 7, while the screen brightness is initially set to approximately 200 cd/m², and the color balance on the camera is forced to switch to 6500 K.

There is a white field perpendicular to the screens (Nexus 7 above):

Note the average uniformity of brightness and color tone of the white field.

And a test picture:

The colors on the screen of the tested tablet have a saturation close to natural, and the color balance of the screens clearly differs.

When viewed perpendicularly, the uniformity of the black field is low (you can ignore moire):

The screen of this tablet has good viewing angles, maintaining colors at large tilt angles and without shade inversion. However, when tilted diagonally, the black field becomes lighter, but remains relatively neutral gray as perceived by the eye.

The screen contrast, especially in the central part, is high and amounts to about 1200:1. The response time when changing color from black to white and back is 19 milliseconds (10 ms on + 9 ms off). The transition between gray shades 25% and 75% and back takes a total of 32 milliseconds.

Analysis of the gamma curve, constructed using 32 points at equal intervals based on the numerical value of the shade of gray, did not reveal blockages in either highlights or shadows. The exponent of the approximating power function was 2.25, close to the standard value of 2.2. The real gamma curve deviates little from the power-law dependence.

We did not detect the presence of dynamic adjustment of the backlight brightness in accordance with the nature of the displayed image, which is very good.

Color gamut is close to sRGB:

The spectra show that the matrix filters moderately mix the components with each other:

By default, the color temperature on the white field is high, about 10200 K. However, this device has the ability to adjust the color balance by adjusting the hue on the color wheel or simply by selecting one of three preset profiles.

After manual correction (the position of the point is as in the picture above), it was possible to bring the color temperature closer to the standard 6500 K, and keep the deviation from the blackbody spectrum (ΔE) at a low value. At the same time, color temperature and ΔE change little from shade to shade of gray — this has a positive effect on the visual assessment of color balance. (The darkest areas of the gray scale can be ignored, since color balance there is not very important, and the error in measuring color characteristics at low brightness is large.)

However, there is no particular point in doing this, since the maximum brightness is reduced to 230 cd/m², and it is not too much anyway.

There is already a traditional setting that allows you to reduce the intensity of the blue component.

Of course, there is no ultraviolet radiation and the negative effects of blue light on eye fatigue. Although bright light can affect the circadian rhythm, this is resolved by reducing the brightness to a comfortable level, and it does not make sense to distort the color balance by reducing the influence of blue.

This device probably does not support DisplayPort Alt Mode for USB Type-C, which means it is not possible to output image and sound to an external device via the USB port. This is confirmed by the USBTreeView program report.

So, the screen has excellent anti-glare properties, but its low maximum brightness (270 cd/m²) limits the use of the device outdoors on a bright day. In the dark, the brightness can be reduced to a comfortable level (2 cd/m²). The automatic brightness adjustment mode works adequately. Among the advantages of the screen, it is worth noting an effective oleophobic coating, the absence of an air gap between the layers of the screen and the absence of flicker. High contrast (1200:1), wide sRGB color gamut and good color balance (after correction) are also positive aspects. However, it should be noted the low stability of black when the gaze deviates from perpendicular to the screen and the low brightness. In general, the quality of the screen, despite the importance of its characteristics for this class of devices, cannot be assessed as high.

Performance

The tablet runs on the Unisoc Tiger T616 SoC, which includes six energy-efficient CPU cores and two high-performance ones, with a maximum frequency of 2 GHz. Unisoc chips are aimed at budget devices. In last year's model we saw an SoC from the same manufacturer, only T618. What's better? Let's compare, especially since the amount of RAM on Digma tablets is the same.

Let's start with browser tests: Octane Benchmark, Kraken Benchmark and JetStream 2.

 Digma Pro Hit 108E
(Unisoc Tiger T616)
Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G
(Unisoc Tiger T618)
Huawei MatePad SE (2022)
(Snapdragon 680)
Octane 2.0
(points, more is better)
149251522312550
Kraken Benchmark 1.1
(ms, lower is better)
261625583246
JetStream 2.0
(points, more is better)
565142

In browser tests, the difference between Digma Pro models is minimal and ambiguous. The Huawei device is behind, although the lag is not too great.

Next are the comprehensive benchmarks Geekbench and AnTuTu. Please note that a year ago we did not test tablets in versions of Geekbench 6 and AnTuTu 10 (they appeared only in 2023), so there are no corresponding results.

 Digma Pro Hit 108E
(Unisoc Tiger T616)
Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G
(Unisoc Tiger T618)
Huawei MatePad SE (2022)
(Snapdragon 680)
Geekbench 5 / 6 Single-Core Score
(scores, higher is better)
358 / 438331/-374/-
Geekbench 5 / 6 Multi-Core Score
(scores, higher is better)
1504 / 15911056/-1456/-
AnTuTu Benchmark 9 / 10
(points, more is better)
263108 / 294337229656/-202457/-

Here the new product performs significantly more confidently.

Let's move on to GPU tests. In them, Digma Pro Hit 108E, on the contrary, lags behind, albeit not very much.

 Digma Pro Hit 108E
(Unisoc Tiger T616)
Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G
(Unisoc Tiger T618)
Huawei MatePad SE (2022)
(Snapdragon 680)
3DMark (Sling Shot Extreme mode)108712071350
3DMark (WildLife mode)472571449

Finally — GFXBenchmark. Please note: we only included Offscreen subtests, where the picture is displayed in a fixed resolution, regardless of the tablet screen resolution. Results are rounded to whole numbers.

 Digma Pro Hit 108E
(Unisoc Tiger T616)
Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G
(Unisoc Tiger T618)
Huawei MatePad SE (2022)
(Snapdragon 680)
GFXBenchmark 1440р Aztec Ruins (High Tier Offscreen)2 fps2 fps3 fps
GFXBenchmark 1080p Aztec Ruins (Normal Tier Offscreen)5 fps6 fps9 fps
GFXBenchmark 1080p Car Chase Offscreen6 fps7 fps8 fps
GFXBenchmark 1440p Manhattan 3.1.1 Offscreen5 fps7 fps14 fps
GFXBenchmark 1080p Manhattan 3.1 Offscreen10 fps12 fps20 fps
GFXBenchmark 1080p Manhattan Offscreen16 fps21 fps38 fps

Well, here the new product is again slightly behind its predecessor, but, most importantly, it is significantly inferior to the Huawei tablet. We state: gaming performance is the weak point of the Unisoc Tiger T616.

Connection

This device does not support Wi-Fi 6, limiting itself to Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) only. There is also no 5G support (however, in the context of Russia this is not so important).

Interestingly, this tablet provides the ability to install two SIM cards at once. However, the practicality of such a solution raises questions, given that such devices are rarely used for telephone conversations, and a SIM card is usually required to access the mobile Internet. But as they say, options are always useful.

Below are the results of a data transfer test performed using the Speedtest application.

Phone calls are supported, so with a headset this tablet can be an adequate replacement for your main smartphone.

There is also a satellite navigation module, but satellites are difficult to “catch”. This is the result we saw after a minute in the open air.

Perhaps this is due to the all-metal case with a very narrow plastic insert.

Playing video

This device apparently does not support DisplayPort Alt Mode for USB Type-C — outputting image and sound to an external device when connected to a USB port. Therefore, we had to limit ourselves to testing the output of video files on the screen of the device itself. To do this, we used a set of test files with an arrow and a rectangle moving one division per frame (see “Method for testing video playback and display devices. Version 1 (for mobile devices)”). Screenshots with a shutter speed of 1 s helped determine the nature of the output of frames of video files with various parameters: the resolution varied (1280 by 720 (720p), 1920 by 1080 (1080p) and 3840 by 2160 (4K) pixels) and frame rate (24, 25, 30, 50 and 60 fps). In the tests we used the MX Player video player in the “Hardware” mode. The test results are summarized in a table (4K H.265 files are not played):

FileUniformityPasses
4K/30pFineNo
4K/25pFineNo
4K/24pFineNo
1080/60pFinefew
1080/50pFineNo
1080/30pFineNo
1080/25pFineNo
1080/24pFineNo
720/60pFinefew
720/50pFineNo
720/30pFineNo
720/25pFineNo
720/24pFineNo

Based on the frame output criterion, the playback of video files on the screen of this tablet is rated as good. In most cases, frames or groups of frames are output at relatively even intervals without frame drops. However, the refresh rate is slightly lower than 60 Hz, which creates noticeable image jerking even with perfectly smooth video transmission: two or three frames can be dropped every second.

When playing video files with a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels (1080p), the actual video image is displayed exactly across the width of the screen, leaving black bars at the top and bottom. The image quality is high, but not ideal due to the inevitable interpolation to the screen resolution. However, you can change the mode to one-to-one pixel by pixel, which eliminates interpolation.

The tablet displays a standard brightness range of 16-235, allowing you to display all gradations of shades in shadows and highlights. It should be noted that this device does not support hardware decoding of H.265 files with a color depth of 10 bits per color. Also, HDR files cannot be played in hardware decoding mode.

Operating system and applications

This tablet runs on Android 12 operating system. However, while there is a possibility of an update to the newer 13 version, you shouldn't expect it anytime soon. It is important to note that the device has its own shell, and my impressions of it are quite contradictory.

In addition to the icons that are not always clear, the confusion between applications and links to install applications is frustrating. Russian software (in the screenshot below) is represented only by links.

Initially, the tablet does not come with pre-installed Google services, although they are supported. However, after connecting the device to Wi-Fi and waiting for a while, an update notification will usually appear, which, when installed, will activate the Play Store. From now on, applications such as Drive, Maps and others are available. The mystery is that GMail is installed on the tablet immediately after turning it on.

As for the operation of Google applications and others that require support for Google services, this is possible thanks to the installed microG package. This package is widely known among narrow circles of users. Despite the fact that you can find extensive discussions on the Internet about solving various problems, the vast majority of popular applications function reliably through microG.

The list of pre-installed applications on the device is quite modest. There are three application stores on the tablet: AppGallery, NashStore and RuStore.

Despite the presence of FM radio in the previous model Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G, this option is not available on this device. This is believed to be due to the lack of a wired headphone jack, which is usually used as an antenna to receive radio signals.

The device uses HMS Core (Huawei) and Huawei cloud storage, but suggests using Google cloud to sync photos.

Note that several times during testing the tablet froze, sometimes just in the settings. The only thing that saved me was a long press on the power button until it turned off completely.

Autonomous operation and heating

The tablet is equipped with a non-removable battery with a capacity of 8000 mAh. This is significantly more than many devices of similar dimensions, including the Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G and Huawei MatePad SE (2022). So we were curious to see how this affected the results. Unfortunately, the game test did not run correctly on the device: the Manhattan scene failed, and the T-Rex gave an implausible result (but we still included it in the table). But in other scenarios, questions no longer arise.

 Digma Pro Hit 108E
(Unisoc Tiger T616)
Digma Pro 1800F Tiger 4G
(Unisoc Tiger T618)
Huawei MatePad SE (2022)
(Snapdragon 680)
3D games, GFXBenchmark Manhattan battery benchmark (brightness 100 cd/m²)did not work (in the Manhattan subtest) / 23 hours 5 minutes (in the T-Rex subtest; doubtful)12 hours 13 minutes (in the Manhattan subtest)did not work (in the Manhattan subtest) / 8 hours 14 minutes (in the T-Rex subtest)
Watching online videos from YouTube (brightness 100 cd/m²)12 hours 45 minutesabout 12 hours9 hours 15 minutes
Reading mode, white background (brightness 100 cd/m²)18 hours 30 minutes16 hours 45 minutes13 hours 55 minutes

We see that the tablet actually lasts longer, although the gap is not as large as it seems when comparing the battery capacity.

We conduct a test for performance degradation when heated using the Burnout Benchmark program, which allows you to load the CPU, GPU and NPU.

The result is generally not bad. The drop in productivity is approximately twofold, but not significantly.

Core LoadHeating performance as a percentage of maximum
CPU49%
GPU70%
NPU40%

The device heats up moderately under load and does not cause any discomfort.

Cameras

The camera resolution on the tablet is the same as that of the previous model, and in this case you should not criticize the device for this fact. For this type of device, 5 megapixels for the front camera and 13 megapixels for the main one (supporting 1080p video recording) are sufficient indicators. However, as before, the problem lies in the quality of the images obtained from the main camera. It is not sufficient to use this option as the main one for photography, except for utilitarian or documentary purposes. However, it is recommended to pay attention to the HDR mode, which significantly improves image performance.

without HDR
with HDR
without HDR
with HDR
without HDR
with HDR
without HDR
with HDR
without HDR
with HDR

Poor detail and faded, inexpressive colors remain the problems of the module. The same can be said about the quality of video recording, but here the blurry and noisy picture is also striking. There are also focus jerks. An example video is here (61.1 MB).

The front camera has a resolution of 5 megapixels, and video transmission is 720p; this is quite enough for video communication (as is the image quality).

Conclusions

The main advantage of the new Digma Pro tablet is its reasonable price. Despite the fact that it is not considered the lowest, the kit includes a case, an adapter for wired headphones and a power adapter with support for fast charging. In addition, the advantages are 4G support (the ability to use two SIM cards) and an attractive appearance. The user gets simultaneous access to both Google services (via microG) and Huawei cloud services.

However, the list of shortcomings of the tablet is also noticeable. The main ones include some instability (possible freezes and problems with speakers), poor performance, especially in game mode, average sound level of the built-in speakers, dim screen, unstable operation of satellite navigation due to poor signal reception. In addition, we can note the mediocre quality of the cameras, the lack of a facial recognition function, and the limited capabilities of the USB-C port. The decision on priorities between the listed disadvantages and significant money savings remains with the user.