"This Best Selling Archos 80 G9 8GB For Sale Tends to SELL OUT VERY FAST! If this is a MUST HAVE product, be sure to Order Now to avoid disappointment!"
Because it’s an ARCHOS device your ARCHOS 80 G9 comes with tailor made Video and Music apps bringing Full HD video, more codec support, jackets and meta-data for your videos, and those extra ARCHOS touches like full screen mirroring and streaming your media over your home wifi network.
Well, this new one from Archos is great! Archos increased the RAM by 50% (Archos, you need to go to 1GB or more!!!) which greatly improved the responsiveness of the device; add in the dual core CPU and you end up with a very nice product. The overall physical design is basically the same as their last generation tablets and they take a lot of hits from reviewers on the design that I think are undeserved. Their design is different to be sure but they still build a quality device. Hint to Reviewers: not every tablet needs to look like an iPad!!! The screen on the G9 is bright and of better quality than the last generation and works well.
I’ve found the G9 to be pretty stable; that wasn’t true of Archos’ last generation of tablets. Their last generation were somewhat unstable initially but were improved upon with firmware updates to the point where my 70 was about as stable as any other tablet I’ve ever used. My G9 was stable but did lock up twice on the first weekend I had it. I know that doesn’t sound like the definition of stable but after that first weekend, it worked for quite a while without another lockup. There have been a couple of updates since the initial release and after the last update, I have had a few more lockups. I expect Archos will fix that issue soon; judging from their track record with such fixes. When it locks up, sometimes the screen freezes and I have to reboot it to get it going again; this usually happens on the lock screen. And every now and then, the screen won’t come on when the power button is pressed and requires a reboot. This does not happen every day or anything like that; probably more like once a week maybe… After the first firmware update, it was rock solid, no freezes, but the last one created a bug somewhere that causes these freezes. I fully expect that Archos will fix this soon.
UPDATE: I received another firmware update from Archos not long after writing this review and my tablet has been extremely stable ever since; several weeks now.
Overall, I find the Archos 80 G9 to be a very good value. There are definitely areas where it can be improved though. I’ve read reviews where it was criticized for button placement; in my opinion, the reviews I’ve read have unfairly weighted this issue. The buttons could certainly be better placed or better designed (they need to be designed so that they aren’t pressed accidentally) but once a user begins to account for where they are, the buttons cease to be an issue. The speaker on this model is in the back which means you can’t hear it as well as one in the front. My 70 has two speakers, one on either side of the screen on the front and sounds great but the 80′s speaker is not as well placed. I rarely use the speaker though; being a mobile device, it is used with ear buds most of the time. The camera in every Archos tablet I’ve ever used is horrible. I don’t buy them for the camera but there is definitely room for improvement there. On the 70, the SD card rested flush with the side of the tablet; on the 80, it sticks out a little. It doesn’t get in the way but I would rather it fit flush. Archos tablets have a built-in kickstand which is a nice feature but I like the one on the 101 from last year better than the one the 80 has; it’s still a nice feature though. This device plays video and music very well. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Netflix app works on it out of the box; that wasn’t true of previous models. And lastly, the battery life is as advertised. I haven’t actually tried to run the battery down to get an accurate test of the battery life but I use it daily for hours at a time and have yet to run it out of juice. So, I estimate that the battery life is as advertised. Also, previous Archos models had good daily battery life but didn’t manage the battery well when it was idle (they actually improved on this in later firmware releases); this model shipped with a good battery management system and performs well enough to compete with other tablets I’ve used and tested.
In comparison to other tablets, I think the 80 competes very well, especially considering the price. My 15 year old son has an Asus Transformer and that is a very nice Android tablet. I would say the Transformer is a better tablet (better screen, a little faster and designed to compete with mainstream tablets) but because it costs so much more, not necessarily a better buy. I have an iPad as well and the Archos 80 isn’t quite as responsive as an iPad and the iPad has a better screen; but for the price, the Archos 80 G9 is a very compelling alternative. I think the most useful comment I can make about the Archos 80 G9 is that even though I have other tablets (including an iPad) and though I’m in a position that I can literally have any tablet I want, I use this tablet as my primary day to day device. I think that should speak volumes to anyone considering purchasing this tablet.
I won’t speak to the specs on the tablet, you can find those facts here or on Archos’ website; but the reasons I like this device are that it fits in my pocket (back pants pocket; ladies it will fit in many purses and bags as well), it does everything I need it to do and at a price that is more in line with where I think all tablets should be. It’s a little heavier than I had hoped it would be, when compared to the Archos 70 I had previously been using, and slightly thicker as well but still comfortable to use. The size factor is one of the biggest advantages to me. Most tablets are 10 inches and that makes them less portable in my opinion. I like being able to slip the tablet into my back pocket when I’m on the move.
Well, I could say more but I’ve probably said enough. So I’ll close by saying that this is a tablet I’d feel comfortable recommending to anyone. The only major shortcoming I see today for this tablet is that you can’t get the 3G card for it in the US yet (probably other countries as well but I’m in the US so this is the one that affects me). I did ask their support if they plan on releasing the 3G card for the US and they confirmed that they do, but didn’t know when we would see it. But for a Wi-Fi only user, this is a very good value!
* Fast 1GHz dual core CPU
* Android 3.2 (and not crippled)
* Enough built-in memory to get started
* Expandable with up to 32 GB SDHC
* Charges from USB (high power USB required) This is a HUGE deal if you travel a lot!
* Good size compromise between 10″ and 7″. It’s in the Goldilocks zone.
* Archos Media Player App makes finding and playing media on home shared file systems ridiculously easy. I was really impressed with this.
* Full access to both Android Market and Amazon App Store
* Built in kickstand is handy
* Wi-fi has been 100% reliable
* Ripple on the screen when the back is pressed. Not major IMO.
* Has locked up once, but since that’s been only once in about a month of use, that’s really not bad at all.
* Not as svelt as some more expensive tablets.
* Display really looks good and we were not at all disappointed in it, but still not on par with some higher end tablets
Bottom Line: Why pay about the same or slightly less for a crippled “book reader” tablet when you can get great hardware, a great OS, and a fully capable Android system instead? Or, you can pay twice the price to get a thinner unit with Gorilla glass and a slightly better display. This is a remarkable value.
Key differentiator here is that it’s an Archos and can thus play a variety of video formats right out of the box: eg: divx, xvid, etc.
HDMI out, 1 ghz dual core, 2 USB ports, 3g stick capable, built in kick stand (this has proven to be very useful).
-good battery life
-nice archos native apps
-can play divx and xvid out of the box!
-pay like 10-15 for an archos plugin that plays AC3 audio (does any tablet anywhere play this audio format???)
-doesnt have the build quality feel of an ipad or galaxy (doesnt have their price tags either)
-has locked up on me a few times, but nothing a reset cant handle
-very difficult to find accessories (I did a custom cut Invisible Shield skin-like installation on it)
-sometimes HDMI out freezes
the only thing i’m not sure of is whether ice cream sandwich will get ported on this thing… i really dont feel like rooting it.
Update: Archos has confirmed that this will be updated to Ice Cream Sandwich making this one of the most future proof tablets on the market.
Update2: I’ve now played with this for awhile as well as a Asus Transformer (not Prime) and an HTC Evo View (gingerbread, 7in, same as HTC Flyer), as well as an IPAD2. I have to say, dollar for dollar this thing stands up to the field. Transformer and IPAD2 blew me away (but i think that’s just the sheer size and the resolution). The HTC Evo View was surprising spry with the 7inch size, but the ratio was not optimal for movies.
In terms of the archos:
-8in is not perfect for eBook reading in bed (but perfect for the coffee table with the kickstand).
-512 ram is not enough. But, i can’t decide if it’s the TI processor or the ram or simply Honeycomb. Bottom line is that sometimes i feel like i need to defrag this thing so i reboot it (and that works). I cant say definitively what is causing the lag and delays, b/c this is Unix based with Java apps vs Windows. So, I’m not technical enough to understand the garbage collection and RAM management. Just reboot this thing everyday or so, and you should be fine
-tested the USB port below with my verizon 3g stick and cant get it to work
-was however, able to power all my external drives with it! including a 2.5 5400 with no power supply (trick is to reboot with drive plugged in)
-tested the HDMI out… Awesome but sensitive, if u move around too much and it loosens, signal will freeze (this could also be due to cable quality)
-USB charger is standard so i can charge it with my various cell phone chargers (in the car, with random USB chargers strewn thru my house)
-Flash on honeycomb has been fun as it allows me to play some flash based games. But set your expectations: this is a 1ghz machine running 512 ram. Flash can be a hog and thus, dont expect the same performance as your 2ghz duo core laptop.
All in all, i still love this thing. I recommend it for your starter tablet or the one u throw in your bag and hit the coffeeshop with. However, after feeling the build quality of some of the others, I’m now definitely getting the Asus Transformer Prime (upgradeable RAM!?).
I would (and DO to anyone who will listen) HIGHLY recommend this tablet. To me, it’s the perfect size…large enough to be easy for my 56 year old eyes to read and small enough to tote around in my large purse.
I bought my son an Archos 70 for Christmas and we like that one, too, although it’s too small for my old eyes and fumbly fingers.
Very happy customer.