Review | MeeGoPad T07 Atom Z8300 PC Dongle

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T07 review unit was sent to me courtesy of MeeGoPad, so my gratitude to Elaine, for the help and support!

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MeeGoPad has been around since 2011, engaged at first in ODM and OEM service for desktops, notebooks and so on, and in 2014 moved on to branded tablets, followed by the introduction (at the end of 2014) of the world’s first PC on a stick (dongle).

The T07 Cherry Trail Stick PC is the newest Mini PC by MeeGoPad. What sets it apart is not its hardware, but the fact that its production was accompanied with a crowdfunding campaign at Indiegogo

What’s in the box?

As can be seen both in the unboxing video, and in the photo below, the included item list is short: Micro-USB power cable + power plug, short HDMI 1.4 extension cable, a quick guide leaflet, and a warranty card.
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T07 Looks and design

The T07 looks like a fat USB thumb drive. It includes active cooling via a tiny fan embedded inside, and both active and passive cooling are assisted with the vents that cover the plastic-rubber enclosure from all sides but one (the HDMI connector side). It is a smart design, but the device still gets pretty hot. As for noise level – it is hardly noticeable and does not pose an issue.

Specifications

OS Windows 10 Home(See product listing for activation status)
CPU Intel© Atom™ x5-Z8300
CPU Frequency 1.44Ghz
Turbo Frequency 1.84Ghz
Cores 4
GPU Intel© HD Graphics 12EU Gen8LP
RAM LPDDR3 2/4GB
Storage 32GB on-board
WiFi 802.11b/g/n, 2.4GHz
Bluetooth 4.0
Expandable Storage MicroSD up-to 64GB
USB Data 2x USB 2.0
Display HDMI 1.4
Audio 3.5mm
Power In MicroUSB 5v 2A
Power Keys On/Off

Benchmarks and Testing

All benchmarks have been repeated 3 times and results have been averaged to give a more accurate reading:

Novabench

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Novabench offers a mix of tests ranging between CPU and memory to GPU abilities.The T07 gets a respectable middle position in the three Atom Z8300 devices I’ve tested so far.

PC Mark 8

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PC Mark 8 Basic tests go for 20-45 minutes in GPU-accelerated or standard mode and they test regular office tasks as well as memory and video performance. The test was done with Open CL acceleration, and still took last place – although not too far from the Mele PCG03 Plus that precedes it. I did have some issues running the PC Mark benchmark as it crashed a few times, and after updating became unusable to a  degree that I had to uninstall it and do a system clean in order to get it back to working order.

3D Mark

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3D Mark does what the name says – it tests a device’s ability to handle 3d animation and simulation. Performance is quite poor, which put the T07 in last place, and I suspect that it has to do with some CPU/GPU throttling to avoid overheating issues which plague dongle devices.

Video Playback testing (Using KODI)

Resolution Video Format Local Playback Network (WiFi) Playback
720p (1280*720) AVC (High@L4.1)  Okay * Occasional Buffering
1080P (1920*1080) AVC (High@L4)  Okay * Occasional Buffering
4K/UHD (4096*2304) AVC (High@L5.1)  Okay ** Sometimes Buffering, Stutter, Audio loss
2160P (3840*2160) HEVC (H.265)  Okay  Okay
4K TS HEVC files HEVC (H.265) 10Bit Artifacts, audio loss, stutter Artifacts, audio loss, stutter

* Buffering occurs, but only in some of the files. It may have to do with less than perfect encodings, coupled with poor/mediocre WiFi performance.

** Some of the test files performed fine, while others (may be heavier in nature) buffered a few times.

Issues and bugs

  1. At first boot, no picture appeared on my LG TV. Only after hooking the dongle to a Samsung TV, I was able to boot correctly. Afterwards, I shut down and reconnected it to my LG TV and it worked fine.
  2. Network performance was not great, and since there is only WiFi – what you see is what you get.
  3. Buffering at the beginning and also through WiFi video playback (720p video and up) is an infrequent issue. It is not consistent as some video files may play through without a hitch, while others will make the viewing experience a frustrating one. I am not sure if it is the WiFi chip’s fault, weak built-in antenna, or something else – but it is a real issue.

Network performance

Network performance has been tested using Speedtest.net Internet speed measuring website, in Wireless mode. My Internet connection is 200 Mbit Symmetric Fibre connection:

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The wireless network speed is quite limiting. When most high resolution videos change in bandwidth requirement through playback, this creates a bottleneck for network playback. However, the T07 may perform better under more optimal conditions (same room as router, or even a WiFi repeater may improve performance).

Gaming performance

Two games were tested. Both were installed from Microsoft’s app store:

  1. Asphalt 8 Airborneasphalt 8,airborne,game,t07,performance,meegopad,frame rate,speed,racingThe game was jerky at best, with frame rate between 10-15 frames per second.
  2. World of Tanks Blitzworld of tanks,blitz,game,t07,performance,meegopad,frame rate,speedWOT plays quite smoothly with no evident slow down or jerkiness.

 

Conclusions

Did I like it? Yes, but it could do better without throttling and a better heat dissipation solution. It may also be a good idea to include a USB hub, and maybe add a USB to LAN optional adapter.

Would I recommend it? Yes. Keep in mind that the fact that this is a dongle and not a set-top box, creates some possible issues (mostly with heat dissipation). But also that it means that the device is more portable and still offers full windows 10 experience in the palm of your hand.

So you’d like to buy this box? You can get the 4GB version for 135.59 USD (including windows 10) directly from Meegopad here: Meegopad T07 4GB/32GB Intel Cherry Trail X5-Z8300 Win 10 with Fan Intel Quad-Core HDMI Compute stick

Or the 2GB version I reviewed, also from Meegopad for 119 USD here: Meegopad T07 Official Licensed Cherry Trail Win10 with Smart Quiet Fan Z8300 2GB/32GB Intel Quad-Core HDMI Compute stick

Be aware that these sale pages will offer a special promotion starting tomorrow (Friday, March 18th).

Comments

Comments

  1. MARIO RANDON

    Hi I had to re-install Windows 10 on my Cherry Trail because I forgot the Admin password. Windows installed ok but now I need Wireless Network adapter drivers. Can anyone please help, or let me know from where to download them ?
    thanks

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