The LeEco Le Max was touted as the 'Superphone' when it was launched. While it does pack in flagship specs like a 2K display, a Snapdragon 810 processor, and a 21MP primary camera, its successor, the Le Max 2 offers even better specifications for a significantly lower price tag. And while both these smartphones fall squarely in the phablet category, the Le Max sports a huge 6.33-inch screen, while the younger Le Max 2 rocks a 5.7-inch display. Falling only an inch short from being categorised as a tablet, the Le Max is definitely meant for niche users. If your requirement is a large screened phone, here's a quick review of the Le Max, to help you decide.
Design: Good, Not Great
Display: Sharp and Brilliant
Camera App: Minimal Yet Loaded
Camera Performance: Impressive in Most Shooting Conditions
Fingerprint Reader: Fast and Accurate
Performance: What you expect from SD810
Battery: Just Enough
Specs At A Glance
The Le Max sports a full metal body, which feels really premium in the hand. The build quality is solid, but the overall design of the smartphone is not something really outside-the-box. The bulkiness of the smartphone sets it apart. It's thick and heavy, and requires two hands to be operated. The port placement is standard. The back panel sports a protruding camera module along with some inlays running along the horizontal edges. Up front, the display is almost bezel-less which is a huge plus as it adds to the looks, and helps reduce the width of the smartphone slightly.
The screen on the Le Max spans 6.33 inches and sports 2K resolution. Consequently, it looks stunningly sharp. The text and icons appear crisp, and you can't see any pixelation. The colours pop on the screen and look vivid. The screen brightness was perfect indoors. The smartphone does not give trouble under bright sunlight, and the display looks legible enough. The viewing angles were decent as well, and overall, the display on the Le Max is exactly what you need from a phablet you will be consuming a lot of content on.
The Le Max comes equipped with a 21MP primary camera aided by a dual-LED flash and Optical Image stabilisation, and uses a 4UP shooter for selfies. The default camera app, just like the whole UI on the phone, looks minimal at first, but packs in a bunch of features. On the bottom of the viewfinder you get four options viz Photo, Pano, Video and Slow-Mo, which are pretty self-explanatory. From the bottom right corner, you can access a bunch of real time filters. On the top, you find the settings toggle, which when delved in, gives you control over shooting modes like HDR, Night, Beauty, Portrait, Sports, along with usual camera settings like white balance, ISO, exposure, and shutter speed.
The shooters on the Le Max are one of the better ones we've seen on smartphones lately. The phone manages to capture great colours and detail. The long shots retained sharpness to a great extent even after zooming in, and the overall image quality was impressive. The macro shot turned out stunning. The smartphone does not struggle during night as well, and the images comprised nice colours and sharpness, with minor noise. Even the front facing shooter on the Le Max performs better than primary cameras on some phones.
The Le Max runs company's custom skin eUI on top of Android Lollipop, and the skin is heavy. While the overall interface is simple, it comes with a plethora of options. The phone does not offer an app drawer. Swiping down from the top only unveils all the notifications, as all the quick toggles, and shortcuts are placed on the overview screen, which also shows the recent apps. The phone comes preloaded with Google's app suite, and Yahoo Weather.
The LeMax comes with a dedicated homescreen on the extreme left called LeView, which suggests curated video content for you depending on you usage. You can browse through specific categories as well, to watch whatever you like.
The smartphone has been equipped with an IR Blaster as well, and it lets you control your appliances. Among other video-out options, the phone also offers WirelessHD, and you can find a cut-out slot for the same on the right edge.
The Le Max also comes with a Theme store, and lets you choose from a myriad of themes and wallpapers to change the look and feel of the interface.
The fingerprint reader on the Le Max has been placed on the back, right below the primary camera module, and it's easily accessible. However, due to the large build, you are not likely to use other fingers apart from your two index fingers, and that refrains users from availing the capability of the smartphone to store up to five fingerprints. The sensor works fast, and it rarely missed sensing our fingerprint. You can only use your fingerprints to unlock the phone, or click a picture, and it's disappointing that the smartphone does not provide the option of protecting apps and files using the fingerprints.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 powered Le Max 2 gets 4GB of RAM, and together, the engine components make the overall processing on the smartphone pretty smooth. We do not remember any app crashes, or lags occurring during everyday use. The device also takes on heavy games like a pro as well. Titles like Riptide GP2 and Dead Trigger 2 ran stutter-free, however, we did notice some heating up after long gaming sessions.
The Le Max is backed by a 3,500mAh battery, which drives the device easily for a day despite its 6.33-inch 2K display. With regular usage, which included using data, making calls, taking pictures, and using instant messaging apps, the phone made it from morning through evening on a single charge. On our standard battery test, which includes running an HD video on loop, till the battery drains from full to nil, the smartphone lasted for about nine and a half hours, which is a decent result.
Here's what all the LeEco Le Max brings to the table.
The LeEco Le Max is a loaded offering that delivers great results in almost all the departments. It's got a great build, the processor handles most usage easily, the cameras manage to create stunning shots, and the software brings not so mainstream yet usable features. But, however great it might be, it does not justify the price tag of Rs 32,999. The successor to the smartphone, Le Max 2 offers better specifications, and starts at a price that's Rs 10k lower. Buying the LeEco Le Max only makes sense if you specifically need a powerful 6-inch smartphone.