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"There are quite a lot of cats in the garden."

Can "quite a lot" be translated directly as assez beaucoup?

Il y a assez beaucoup de chats dans le jardin.

What about translating with pas mal?

Il y a pas mal de chats dans le jardin.

I'm not sure if with pas mal we should use de chats or des chats.

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"Pas mal" captures quite correctly the meaning of "quite a lot", but it's slightly informal (just a little bit). And like beaucoup, it's followed by de, not des.

Assez beaucoup is not correct.

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Il y a quand même beaucoup de chats dans le jardin

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