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The Best Tablets Under 400 Dollars | 2023 Edition

Which is the best tablet under 400 dollars? After reviewing almost every tablet, we’re presenting the best ones in this price range.

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iPad 7 VS Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite

Tablets have become a necessary item in people’s daily lives for various activities such as surfing the internet, email reading and writing, watching movies, or playing games. Even students find tablets useful due to their mobility and ease of use with the touchscreen. Yet, some cannot or do not want to buy a costly, state-of-the-art device. This article will provide information on the best tablets available for under $400.

Choosing a cheap yet good tablet can be difficult due to the large selection of similar options, with differences that are not immediately visible. However, we can help you find the right tablet with our summary of budget-friendly devices using iOS, Android, and Windows. We will discuss their strengths and weaknesses, including performance, display quality, and browsing speed (up to 120 Hz). Our list features the best tablets under $400, making it easier for you to find what you’re looking for.

Our overview includes great tablets for everyday use that cost less than $400. Some of these tablets only make minor concessions compared to high-end models, just like some smartphones. So, if you’re not looking for the best of the best, you’ll definitely find something suitable in our selection.

Tablets for under $400: An Overview

  • Best price-performance ratio: Xiaomi Pad 5 (on Amazon*). The Pad 5 is a budget tablet that offers impressive features such as a 120Hz display, good speakers, and reliable performance. The device also comes with useful accessories like a stylus and keyboard cover. Although some premium features like a fingerprint scanner or high-quality build are absent, the device’s affordability more than makes up for it. Overall, the Xiaomi Pad 5 delivers a lot for its price point.
  • Best performance: Apple iPad 9 (on Amazon*). The iPad 9 is a good choice for those who do not want to spend too much money and still want to get as much performance as possible. It is the best tablet for gaming in this price range. The iPad 9 also offers a high-quality build and supports the Apple Pencil (1st generation) and up-to-date software. It is also quite durable due to Apple’s update philosophy. The display is good overall, but unfortunately not fully laminated. The old design with the thick edges also looks a bit out of date.
  • Best tablet with Chrome OS: Lenovo Duet 3 Chromebook (on Amazon*). The Duet Chromebook 3 offers an 11-inch display and good performance. It is worth highlighting that the keyboard is included and the Chromebook is supposed to be provided with software updates until 20230. While we like Chrome OS, some Android apps or games may not be supported. In return, we get the full Chrome desktop browser that works wonderfully with web apps. The Duet Chromebook 3 is especially recommended for students who are looking for an inexpensive tablet with a keyboard and Chrome OS, but it is not suitable as an entertainment tablet.
  • Solid all-rounder: Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 (on Amazon*). The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 has a solid display, an excellent S Pen, satisfactory performance, up-to-date software, and a high-quality design. However, the Xiaomi Pad 5 has a similar price and is superior to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 in almost all points. Only the longevity due to software updates is (probably) better in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022.
  • Big screen for little money: Honor Pad 8 (on Amazon*). With a 12-inch display, high-quality build, good speakers, plenty of storage, and large working memory, the Honor Pad 8 is a good choice if you are looking for a cheap entertainment tablet. However, the graphics performance is pretty weak and the display only has a Full HD resolution. Thus, it is not really suitable as a gaming tablet.
  • 90 Hz display for $250: Xiaomi Redmi Pad (at Amazon*). The Xiaomi Redmi Pad offers a 90 Hz refresh rate coupled with a decent display as well as solid speakers and a good battery for only $250. Thus, the tablet is super suitable as an entertainment device. Also commendable: Xiaomi wants to give the tablet two major Android updates. The performance of the Xiaomi Redmi Pad is good and it is therefore also suitable as a solid gaming tablet in the lower mid-range.
  • Good 8-inch tablet: realme Pad mini (at Amazon*). The 8-inch Android tablet offers a good performance, especially compared to other tablets of this size. It is nice that we only have to pay a small surcharge for more storage and LTE. The metal casing of the realme Pad mini feels valuable and the speakers are solid. Overall, the tablet is well suited for browsing the Internet, watching YouTube videos, and gaming. A brighter display with Full HD resolution would be desirable.
  • Cheap tablet with Windows: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i (on Amazon*). If you are looking for an inexpensive tablet with a keyboard and Windows OS, then the IdeaPad Duet 3i could be a good choice for simple office work. It has a chic design with a folding stand, a 10.3-inch display, and a good keyboard with a touchpad. However, the performance is not sufficient for more demanding apps. You can get much better performance in the same price range with Chrome OS, iPadOS or Android. However, if you need Windows, the IdeaPad Duet 3i could be a good choice if you want to spend little money and do not need much performance.

Test Winners for Tablets Under $400: All Details

Let’s now take a look at all the tablets under $400 in detail.

Xiaomi Pad 5: Best price-performance ratio

Xiaomi Pad 5 tested

Xiaomi Pad 5 on* Amazon

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is a cheaper alternative to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 and S8 and offers many high-quality features like a 120 Hz display, a fast Qualcomm Snapdragon 860 processor, and runs Android 12. The Xiaomi Pad 5 also supports an active stylus and a keyboard cover. 

The design of the Xiaomi Pad 5 resembles the iPad Pro and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7, but it has a plastic back. The build quality is okay, but not quite as high compared to the premium tablets from Apple and Samsung. There is no headphone jack and no microSD card slot, but there is a USB C port. The Xiaomi Pad 5 has four speakers and a webcam with a face recognition feature. 

The Xiaomi Pad 5 comes with either 128 GB or 256 GB of internal storage, depending on the variant. The high-resolution display boasts a brightness that is fully laminated and very bright, with convincing contrast values and colors. Additionally, the Xiaomi Pad 5 supports Widevine Level L1, so you can enjoy HD-resolution Netflix viewing.

The optionally available stylus is good, but not quite as precise as the Apple Pencil or Samsung’s S Pen. However, the 120Hz display still makes it fun to write and draw on the Xiaomi Pad 5. Xiaomi’s pen is made of plastic and has two buttons on the side. It supports 4096 pressure levels and is charged via induction by placing it on the tablet. We also like the optionally available keyboard cover, but it does not have a touchpad.

The high battery life of the Xiaomi Pad 5 is also praiseworthy. Overall, the Xiaomi Pad 5 is a recommendable tablet with a very good screen and build quality. However, the tablet is less powerful than the Apple iPad 9.

Also Read: Xiaomi Pad 5 review

Apple iPad 9: Best performance for under $400

Apple iPad 9 Display

Apple iPad 9 on* Amazon

The iPad 9 is equipped with a powerful A13 processor and has 3GB of RAM as well as 64GB or 256GB of internal storage. It is also available in an LTE variant. The A13 chipset makes it the best gaming tablet in its price range and enables smooth and high-resolution gaming. The strong hardware also makes itself positively felt in other apps, such as Lightroom, Photoshop, and LumaFusion. The iPad 9 allows for multitasking without difficulty, but apps may close faster in the background compared to the iPad Pro because of its smaller working memory.

The 10.2-inch IPS display with wide viewing angle stability and 500 nits offers excellent color reproduction, great contrasts, and pleasant saturation. The resolution of 2160 x 1620 pixels ensures sharp text and icons. However, one drawback is that the iPad 9’s display is not laminated and thus there is a visible air gap between the touchscreen and the IPS layer. This gap is especially noticeable when using the Apple Pencil.

The two stereo speakers, which are on the same side, are also not ideal since they do not provide true stereo separation in landscape mode. However, the sound quality is very good for the price of under $400.

The iPad 9 supports the first-generation Apple Pencil. It is also equipped with a Touch ID fingerprint sensor that works quickly and reliably. The battery of the iPad 9 lasts the whole day on normal usage.

Overall, the iPad 9 offers great performance at an affordable price. The tablet is worth a look, especially for gaming enthusiasts on a tight budget.

Also Read: Apple iPad 9 review

Lenovo Duet 3 Chromebook: Best tablet with Chrome OS

Lenovo Duet 3 Chromebook review

Lenovo Duet 3 Chromebook on* Amazon

The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3 Chromebook uses Chrome OS, an operating system from Google that is optimized for using web apps and runs well on weaker hardware. One of its unique selling points compared to Android is that it uses the desktop version of Chrome, so you can install the same extensions that you know from a desktop PC. Another advantage over Android is that Chrome OS is updated directly by Google and thus gets longer updates. Thus, the Duet 3 Chromebook is supposed to be provided with updates until 2030. Chrome OS is also easy to use with a mouse and keyboard.

You can seamlessly use web apps with the Chrome browser and also download apps, thanks to the Google Play Store that comes preinstalled on the device. The majority of Android apps and games function properly, but there are a few exceptions such as the Microsoft Office apps which are unable to run. Nonetheless, this is not a major issue since the Word Web App and Google Docs both perform very well. It is also praiseworthy that the keyboard cover is included as standard just like in the predecessor – and that at a price less than $400 for the tablet.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3 Chromebook features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 processor and offers a choice of 4GB or 8GB RAM as well as 64GB, 128GB, or 256GB internal storage. Unfortunately, there is currently no version with LTE or 5G support from Lenovo. If you are mainly looking for a tablet for gaming, we would recommend staying away from Chrome OS. However, it is possible to occasionally play games on Duet 3. PUBG Mobile, for example, runs surprisingly well with HDR graphics, but UltraHD graphics are not available.

Although the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3 Chromebook is not the thinnest device (7.9 mm), it looks valuable. The weight of 517g without the keyboard is okay. It is cool that there are two USB C 3.2 Gen 1 ports on the sides, which can also be used to connect external monitors. Compared to many other tablets that only have one USB C port, this is a practical advantage. The tablet can be charged via both ports.

The Lenovo Duet 3 Chromebook has an 11-inch display with a resolution of 2000 x 1200 pixels and a brightness of 400 nits. The screen is fully laminated. The somewhat weak speakers and the somewhat low battery life are to be criticized.

We find this device to be particularly well-suited for students looking for an affordable tablet with a keyboard and Chrome OS. However, it is not an ideal entertainment tablet – In this area, you are better off with the competition.

Also Read: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3 Chromebook review

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022: Solid all-rounder

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 on* Amazon

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 is equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G chipset and has 4GB RAM and 64GB or 128GB internal storage. There is also a version with LTE. Although the S6 Lite is not a powerful gaming tablet, almost all games can be played – including Fortnite, for example, when the graphics settings are adjusted low.

Multitasking and Samsung’s DeX desktop mode also work well. Thus, parallel use of YouTube, Internet browser and Word documents is possible without problems. However, during demanding multitasking or when many apps are opened in DeX, you notice that the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 is not as powerful as premium tablets like the Galaxy Tab S8.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite has a 10.4-inch LCD screen with a resolution of 2000 x 1200 pixels. The sharpness of texts and icons is satisfactory, but not as crystal clear as on more expensive tablets. The screen is fully laminated and bright enough, but a bit darker than the iPad 9. Viewing angle stability is good and colors look nice and vibrant and better than the Galaxy Tab A7 and A8.

The tablet supports HD resolution for streaming services like Netflix since it has a Widevine Level L1. However, it does not support HDR. Although the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 only has two speakers, the sound quality is better compared to the four speakers of the Galaxy Tab A8. However, the sound is not as good as in the S8.

Like the predecessor, the S Pen is included at no additional cost. The S Pen works fine. It has a metal casing that feels high-quality and well-made. It feels like a premium tablet, although it lacks some premium features like a fingerprint sensor. The tablet is only 7 mm thick and weighs 467 g. There is a MicroSD card slot, a 3.5 mm headphone jack, and a USB-C 2.0 port on the sides.

Samsung offers two keyboard variants for the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite on its website, but they are from a different manufacturer. The keyboard cover is functionally good and enables comfortable typing. It connects via USB-C, which does not require separate charging. Overall, however, the keyboard cover feels quite cheap.

The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022, which ships from the factory with Android 12 and Samsung’s own interface, will likely receive at least two more major version updates. Thus, the tablet will probably still receive Android 13, 14, and possibly even Android 15. The battery performance of the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is good.

Overall, the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 offers a solid display, a nifty S Pen, decent performance, up-to-date software, and a high-quality design.

Also Read: Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022 review

Honor Pad 8: Big screen for little money

Honor Pad 8 review

Honor Pad 8 on* Amazon

The Honor Pad 8 could be the perfect entertainment tablet for many users. Although it forgoes many premium features for $220, it has a large 12-inch display, eight speakers, and a high-quality build.

The tablet has a 12-inch display, which is slightly smaller than the screens on tablets like the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8+ and Galaxy Tab S7 FE, both of which measure 12.4 inches. The pixel density on the tablet is also lower than on premium tablets, as it uses a classic LCD display with a 2000 x 1200 pixel resolution. However, the screen is fully laminated, has good colors and contrasts, and is bright enough, although not as bright as an iPad Pro. In addition, the speakers on the tablet produce good sound quality.

The performance of the Honor Pad 8 does not belong to the top class. It has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 octa-core processor and 6GB of RAM as well as 128GB of internal storage. A version with LTE is currently not available. The tablet can only render many games with low graphics settings.

The device looks and feels like a premium tablet. It has a high-quality metal casing that is quite thin with a thickness of 6.9mm and is also relatively lighter with a weight of 520g. It has a USB C port, four-speaker ports, a volume rocker, and a power button, but no headphone jack or MicroSD card slot. It does not offer a fingerprint unlock option, but facial recognition via the 5-megapixel webcam works surprisingly well. However, this is not particularly secure since only one camera is used. The Honor Pad 8 ships with Android 12.

For $220, the Honor Pad 8 is a tablet with a large 12-inch display, a good build, good speakers, a lot of storage, and a large working memory. Unfortunately, the graphics performance is pretty weak and the resolution is only just above FullHD.

If you are looking for a cheap entertainment tablet, the Honor Pad 8 is a good choice. Premium features like a high screen resolution and stylus support are missing, though.

Also Read: Honor Pad 8 review

Xiaomi Redmi Pad: 90Hz display for $250 

Redmi Pad review

Xiaomi Redmi Pad on* Amazon

The Redmi Pad, a mid-range tablet from Xiaomi, has been launched recently. It is a great device with qualities such as having no significant drawbacks, apart from its absence of multitasking. The tablet is available at a price of approximately $250. It has a 90 Hz display, has already received two major Android updates, has a solid MediaTek processor, offers up to 6GB of RAM, has a metal casing, and even four speakers.

The 10.61-inch display has a resolution of 2000 x 1200 pixels. That’s nothing special, though it is a 90Hz screen, which is unusual for tablets in this price range. The faster refresh rate makes animations look smoother and some games can also benefit from it. You can also select 60Hz in the settings to save some battery or set a variable frequency that is determined by the tablet itself.

The display is slightly darker than the Apple iPad 9 and slightly brighter than the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite 2022. Contrast and colors look good, although black levels are not as deep as an OLED screen due to the LCD display. The sound from the Redmi Pad’s speakers is solid.

Xiaomi promises that the tablet will receive two years of major Android updates and three years of security updates, which will keep it current for a similar amount of time as Samsung’s mid-range tablets and longer than many other manufacturers.

The Redmi Pad features a MediaTek Helio G99 chipset and comes with 3GB, 4GB, or 6GB of RAM. When you buy it, you can choose between 64GB and 128GB of storage, but there is no version with 5G or LTE. The graphics performance of the Redmi Pad is solid. Games like PUBG Mobile run well when you set the graphics to HD, but higher settings are not available. 

Unfortunately, Fortnite is not supported by the Redmi Pad, which we find a bit annoying.

However, the device’s big weakness is its multitasking performance. Individual apps like Chrome, YouTube, Microsoft Office, and even Adobe Lightroom run well, but there are problems when multitasking. In the version with 3GB of RAM, it is even not possible to open two apps side by side because Xiaomi disabled the multi-window mode. If you need multitasking and especially the multi-window view, you have to choose at least the version of the Redmi Pad with 4GB RAM.

Xiaomi has done a lot right with the design of the Redmi Pad. It looks like a typical tablet with a metal casing and makes its own mark with the large rectangular camera module. The USB C 2.0 port is located between two of the four speakers and there is room for a microSD memory card on one side. Xiaomi has omitted a fingerprint sensor. The impressive battery life of the tablet is also worthy of praise.

Overall, the Redmi Pad is a fantastic tablet for entertainment purposes and comes at an affordable price. The only downside is its poor multitasking capabilities.

Also Read: Redmi Pad review

Realme Pad mini: Good 8 inch tablet

realme Pad mini

realme Pad mini on* Amazon

The realme Pad mini is a very handy tablet. It is about the same size as most 8 inch tablets, but has an 8.7-inch display thanks to narrow bezels. With a width of 12.5cm on the short side, it fits in many jeans and jacket pockets. It is 7.6mm thick and thus not the thinnest tablet.

At this price, the metal case has a better quality feel to it than what was anticipated. The power button and volume controls on the sides are also made of metal. Although there is a 3.5mm headphone jack at the top and a USB C 2.0 port at the bottom, there are no provisions for external monitors. Moreover, there is a microSD card slot on the side that can fit up to two SIM cards in the LTE version.

When the tablet is held in landscape orientation, there is a speaker on each side, for a total of two. The sound quality is not exceptionally good, but the speakers are loud enough and sufficient for using YouTube and listening to music.

The realme Pad mini has an 8.7-inch LCD display with a resolution of 1340 x 800 pixels. Although the resolution is sufficient, the screen is not the sharpest and you can see pixels if you look closely. Contrast and colors are good, as is viewing angle stability. With 360 nits, it is also sufficiently bright indoors. The battery life of the realme Pad mini is good. 

In summary, the realme Pad mini performs well compared to other 8-inch Android tablets. The surcharge for more memory and LTE is low and the metal casing feels valuable. It is well suited for browsing the web, watching YouTube videos, and gaming. Only the display is a bit dark and not particularly sharp outdoors in the sunshine.

Also Read: Realme Pad mini review

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i: Inexpensive tablet with Windows

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i Photoshop

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i on* Amazon

The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i is a budget-friendly Windows tablet priced at around €400 that comes with a 10-inch display and an Intel Celeron processor. Additionally, the keyboard cover is included in the package.

The design of the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i is one of its strengths. It resembles the Surface Go 2 and is mainly made of plastic, which nevertheless looks high-quality. On the back is a folding stand made of metal, which can easily be folded out far. This ensures that the tablet is stable and secure on the table.

It weighs 890g. However, with a thickness of only 9.9mm, it is very slim and handy. Another plus is the presence of two USB C 3.2 Gen 2 ports on the side of the tablet. These can be used not only to charge the device but also to connect an external monitor or to charge other devices like smartphones. This is convenient and increases the tablet’s flexibility.

The tablet has a MicroSD card slot and a normal headphone jack. There is no facial recognition or fingerprint reader. The keyboard cover is actually one of the standout features of the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i and a big advantage over other tablets because it is included. The keyboard is well-built and the typing feel is pleasant, which also makes the tablet suitable for productive work.

The Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i is available in several versions that differ in terms of processor, RAM, and storage. There are versions with an Intel Celeron N4020 dual-core processor or an Intel Pentium N5030 quad-core chip, 4GB or 8GB of RAM, and 64GB or 128GB of eMMC storage. There is also a model with built-in LTE.

The cheapest version of the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i is not suitable for demanding programs like Adobe Photoshop. If you want to use demanding apps frequently, you should consider buying one of the more expensive versions of the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i with a more powerful processor or go straight to another tablet. However, simple office programs run without problems on the tablet.

The display offers 10.3 inches with a 16:10 aspect ratio and a FullHD resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels. It is bright enough and colors are reproduced well. It is also fully laminated, which means there is no visible air gap between the display and the touchscreen. However, the sound quality of the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i is rather poor.

If you’re looking for a Windows tablet that’s suitable for basic office applications and that’s available at a reasonable price, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i could be a good choice for you. 

Also Read: Our Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 3i Review



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