Dell Venue Pro 11

Score

Sections

Pros

  • Great build quality
  • Versatile design
  • Decent processor
  • Good range of accessories
  • Dual battery option

Cons

  • Surface Pro is faster
  • Screen not as bright as rivals
  • Heavy and thick
  • Slow SSD write speed

Key Features

  • Review Price: £0.00
  • 8in, 1,920 x 1,080 IPS touchscreen
  • 772g
  • 13mm thick
  • 1.5GHz Intel Core i5 processor
  • 4GB memory
  • 128GB SSD
  • Removable battery
  • Windows 8.1 64-bit
  • 1yr collect and return warranty
View All

What is the Dell Venue 11 Pro?

The Dell Venue 11 Pro is aimed at businesses, and that means it is a far more versatile tablet than most of its competitors. It has a removable battery, a host of accessories and numerous configuration options, plus it’s available at a number of prices.

As usual for its business hardware, Dell has also furnished the Venue 11 Pro with plenty of warranty and service options. Several strong competitors, most notably Microsoft’s home-grown Surface Pro 2, reckon they’re best for business, but can the Venue 11 Pro convince us otherwise? It makes a very good case.

ROUND-UP:
Best Windows 8 Laptops and Tablets

Dell Venue 11 Pro

Dell Venue 11 Pro: Design & Build Quality

The Venue 11 Pro is designed to place functionality above style. The back panel is made of soft-touch material that’s very grippy and doesn’t smudge and attract fingerprints like glossy plastic. The soft-touch panel fits into a frame of magnesium alloy, which is impressively strong – there’s no give in its edges, and only a little flex in the back panel and glossy bezel.

Dell has paired great build quality with huge versatility. This is one of few tablets with a full-size USB 3.0 port, and it’s also got a micro HDMI connector and microSD card slot, although you need a pin to ease it open. It’s also the only slate we’ve seen with a removable rear, which means swappable batteries – a boon if you need a couple of power packs for long trips away from the mains. It’s also possible to get at the SSD and wireless chip, which is more access than we’re used to seeing on Ultrabooks, let alone tablets.

READ MORE: Tablet Reviews

Dell Venue 11 Pro

The Dell’s build quality and versatility mean it’s a bulky machine. It tips the scales at 772g, which is more than 200g heavier than the Asus Transformer Book T100, and the Dell’s 13mm thickness is a little wider than the Asus, too. The Surface Pro 2 is a similar thickness, but it hits a heavyweight 910g on the scales. For reference the iPad Air weighs a mere 469g.

The Venue’s chunky design and 10.8-inch screen mean it’s too large to use with one hand for prolonged periods, but it works well with two. In landscape mode our left and right digits fell nicely onto the volume rocker and power button, and in portrait mode our left hand was well-placed to hit the Windows button in the middle of the bezel.

A big part of the Venue’s versatility comes from its accessories. The most enticing is the Tablet Keyboard, which adds a full-size keyboard, trackpad and second battery. This unit has its own micro-USB connection for charging, and its mechanism works well: the tablet clicks firmly into place, and it can be released by prodding a button above the keyboard. Bear in mind, though, that it has no additional ports.

GUIDE: Tablet Buyer’s Guide

Dell Venue 11 Pro

Dell also sells a slim tablet keyboard that mimics Microsoft’s own Touch Cover. Its interior is made from the same soft-touch material as the tablet’s rear while the exterior is covered in grey fabric. This doesn’t include a second battery.

Dell Venue 11 Pro

The accessories bring the Dell into line with the Asus and Surface Pro: the former uses a similar hinged mechanism and a proper keyboard, while the latter has its fabric-covered Touch Cover and its plastic Type Cover.

The Tablet Keyboard turns the Dell into an Ultrabook-style laptop, but the end result is heavier than rivals. The full-size keyboard adds 800g to the Dell’s weight and 9mm to its thickness, for total figures of 1.57kg and 22mm; the Asus Transformer weighs 1.1kg and is 24mm thick when its two portions are clasped together. The Surface Pro’s Type Cover brings the Microsoft tablet’s vital statistics to 1.16kg and 18mm.

Dell Venue 11 Pro: Screen & Sound Quality

Early Venues were afflicted by firmware issues that caused dim screens, but that’s been fixed: the Dell’s 1,920 x 1,080 IPS screen topped out at 389 nits. That’s a great result that delivers more than enough punch, but it can’t quite match the Retina-searing Surface Pro 2, which hit a brightness peak of 422 nits. The contrast ratio of 992:1 is close to the Surface, and it means this display produces a broad range of colours, from inky blacks to powerful light shades.

Dell Venue 11 Pro

The Dell’s good brightness is matched with excellence elsewhere. The colour temperature of 6,650K is barely removed from the 6,500K ideal, and the average Delta E of 2.8 is similarly close to the mark – both of those figures mean that colours are very accurate indeed.

The Venue’s sRGB gamut coverage of 94.5% means that this screen can handle image-based work: it means that almost every shade in the sRGB gamut can be displayed perfectly, with only pinks, deeper reds and lighter purples falling short – and, even then, it’s not by much. The Venue’s Adobe gamut coverage is poorer, but this system isn’t designed for that kind of demanding work.

Dell clearly doesn’t reckon the Venue 11 Pro will be used much as a

media machine: it’s got two speakers that produce high-volume audio, but

quality is sorely lacking. The high-end is occupied by tinny high-hats,

but the Venue’s range is dominated by a mid-range that lacks nuance and

quality. Bass is almost completely absent.

More from TrustedReviews

LG Q8 finally brings the V20’s promise to Europe

Atari is now in the speaker business… and the hat business

Thinner Moto Z2 Force could come with a huge trade-off

HyperLoop One

Elon Musk’s Hyperloop gathering pace as NY-DC link gets ‘OK’

N64oid

Is this proof an N64 Classic will follow the SNES?

Agents of Mayhem preview

cats 17

Why you’ll want to download this OnePlus 5 update today

Golf rory

British Open Golf Live Stream: How to watch online for free

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare for Xbox One down to under £9

Samsung Gear S3 finally gets Samsung Pay support in UK

Welcome to the all new Trusted Reviews

Netgear Arlo

Netgear Arlo Pro

Cat Amazon

Are you kitten me? Pet translation devices tipped for future smart homes

fire emblem warriors

Fire Emblem Warriors

pokken

Pokkén Tournament DX

TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb 5

TP-Link Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb

Samsung Pay

Samsung Pay now lets you use your PayPal funds at the checkout

assassins creed origins

Ubisoft teases new games for Nintendo Switch, coming ‘quite soon’

amazon echo

Ask Vodafone: Mobile network’s first Amazon Alexa voice skill is revealed

Google Feed

The Google app’s new personalised feed might just drag you off Facebook

z2play 9

Moto Z2 Play

Mira Prism

For just $99 you can bring AR to the iPhone 7

Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung Galaxy S9 displays may be the same, save one major new feature

movie theatre

The Netflix Effect: ‘Binge-watching’ is coming to movie theatres

Porsche MIssion E

Porsche’s latest electric car chargers put Tesla to shame

EE logo

EE’s new 20GB SIM-free deal is the best value tariff you’ll see all summer

Int-Ball

These are the first images from the ISS – as captured by a zero-gravity drone

iMac 21.5-inch 4K (2017)

LG V30 case

LG V30 design ‘confirmed’ ahead of IFA 2017 launch

iPhone 7 vs iPhone SE

Waiting for the iPhone SE 2? Sadly, it could be a one-and-done

Google Glass Enterprise

Google Glass 2 has arrived, sort of

Denon AH-C621R

Denon AH-C621R

BBC Proms

Get ready to listen to the BBC Proms like never before

Fender Newport Monterey Bluetooth speakers

Fender’s new Bluetooth speakers look just like tiny guitar amps

Garmin Vivosmart 3

Garmin Vivosmart 3

airplane

Is the laptop travel ban dead? Electronics restrictions lifted by TSA but UK fails to follow suit

KitSound Immerse

KitSound Immerse Wireless Headphones

Emojis

It’s World Emoji Day and Apple is showing off all of its newcomers

Porn Block

Privacy fears as UK plans age verification for porn sites

WhatsApp

New WhatsApp feature could give Apple’s iMessage a run for its money