In the Zenfone 3 series, Asus launched two variants of Zenfone 3 Max in India. In this article, I am going to review the 5.2” variant of Zenfone 3 Max which is ZC520TL.
Build and Design
Zenfone 3 Max 5.2 sports a 2.5D contoured Glass in a full-metal, aluminum alloy-body with diamond cut chamfered edges, that houses its 5.2 inch IPS LCD backlit display. The display is surrounded by a slim, 2.25mm bezel that gives it a high 75% screen to body ratio. The device also features a fingerprint sensor at rear. It supports recognition of up to 5 fingers. The fingerprint sensor also integrates camera with which you can double click to initiate the camera and single tap to take a picture. The fingerprint sensor wasn’t that accurate as it was in Zenfone 3, sometimes took 2-3 seconds to unlock the device. Overall the device looks premium. You may need to get a cover to protect the device because it’s little slippery on the back side.
Software and Hardware
Zenfone 3 Max comes with ZenUI 3.0 powered by Android 6.0. Coming to the performance of the software in Performance section. The device is powered by a 1.25 GHz Quad core Mediatek MT6737T processor and paired with 3GB of RAM. The Asus Zenfone 3 Max ZC520TL features Mali-T720MP2 GPU. The internal storage is 32GB, near about 24GB will be available out of the box. It’s a Dual SIM Smartphone with 4g support but until today (as per 30 Dec ’16), Asus hasn’t provided VoLTE support. Asus claims, at only 148 grams and 8.5mm thick, it is one of the lightest and sleekest smartphones with a battery that is 4000mAh and above.
The device comes with 5.2 inch IPS LCD backlit display with the resolution of 1280×720. The brightness is good in outdoor and in the night too. The device will also usable in the direct sun-light. Display looks little yellowish to me. As most of the zenfones, this device also comes with Bluelight Filter which is useful in the night conditions.
Rear camera is of 13MP with f/2.2 aperture. Provides different modes to enhance the picture quality. Front camera is of 5MP with f/2.5 aperture. Only up-to 720p video recording supported even from the rear camera. Shutter speed is very slow at sometimes, for example in night conditions. Because of not having laser auto-focus in 5.2” variant, sometime takes 2-3 seconds for focusing on objects. In the night conditions, enabling Night mode provides little detail to the picture. The images from front camera lacks in detailing and color. Uploaded some sample shots below.
Performance, Battery Life
The performance of this variant wasn’t really good for me. Actually I’ve received an engineered unit, I hope that the final unit will be more smooth. Coming to the battery, Device was able to last a full day on the 4g network with screen-on-time of near 5 and half hours. On the 4g + wifi, was able to get almost 1.5 days of battery backup.
This variant can be purchased at INR 12,999. This seems little overpriced to me. Because at even lower price, not talking about any other companies but even the Zenfone Max (2016) comes with Snapdragon 615 processor, which performs better than the processor equipped in this device.
- Battery life is good.
- OTG cable is included in the box, that can charge other devices with a current of up to 1.5A.
- Software navigation buttons. (I consider it as a pro for an Asus device but again in the 5.5” variant, hardware buttons with no backlight support)
- Both front and rear camera could be much better, specifically in night conditions.
- Performance isn’t smooth as even compared to Zenfone Max (2016).
The performance, camera and battery should be at-least above average in any smartphone or it may not worth it. In this variant, no doubt the battery is above average but in the performance and camera side, I’m not really impressed. This time, I can’t recommend this device, I would rather suggest you to go for Zenfone Max (2016) edition.