“Considering the looks and performance, the Lenovo Vibe X2 justifies its price tag and goes beyond the ordinary”
In recent months, Lenovo has turned quite aggressive with it smartphone devices offering loaded performance at reasonable prices. The new Lenovo Vibe Z2 is a classic example of this changed ideology as the device offers features that can easily overpower any of the flagship Android smartphones currently selling in the Indian market, while the device comes for a much lower price tag in comparison. With the Vibe X2 , the brand has again tried to offer a mix of brilliant functionality and top-notch hardware specifications while offering neat looks. To top it all up, the handset carries an attractive price tag. Let's take a look at the new Lenovo Vibe X2 and find out how well does it perform in the real world.
Today manufacturers are trying their best to differentiate their smartphones from the competition, with many trying to make their devices slimmer and slimmer. The Gionee Elife S5.1 and the Oppo R5 are good examples, and then are other manufactures like Samsung and LG trying their best with metal and plastic to create devices that are good looking and sturdy too. However, Lenovo has chosen a safe path by offering a device that is not too thick or not too thin, and offers the same comfortable and dependable candy-bar form factor.
In addition, just to spice things up, the designers have adopted an unconventional layered design for the Vibe X2. Now this layered design is not just an aesthetic effect created by paint. In reality, the design feels as if multiple slabs have been stacked upon each other to create the device. In addition, the phone makes use of a magnesium alloy along with plastic to offer a higher level of durability, while keeping a check on the weight as well.
The device sports a unibody design, and owing to this design, it feels quite sturdy too. The SIM slot has been provided on the left and the tray can accommodate two SIM cards – a micro and a nano. At the bottom, there's a micro-USB port, while on the top, a 3.5mm socket. The right side of the device houses the power button followed by the volume rocker key, both of which are made entirely out of metal and carry a grippy pattern on them as well.
Today the design of most slim smartphones is plagued by a protruding camera module at the back, but the designers have managed to provide a small yet powerful camera module on the Vibe X2 so that there is no compromise on the design as well as functionality part.
Additionally, in the box the company also provides a slim, clear polycarbonate cover for the device. Along with offering the protection, it doesn't do much to disrupt the look and feel of the nice-looking handset.
The display unit on the Vibe X2 is a 5-inch full-HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixel) IPS LCD screen that offers a pixel density of close to 440 pixels per inch. In terms of the contrast levels offered and colour reproduction, the display is spot-on and we had no problems with it during the course of the review. One thing worth mentioning is that the brightness levels offered by the display are good and coupled with an ultra sensitive ambient light sensing mechanism, using the device in varied light conditions isn't an issue at all.
The display offers slightly over-saturated colours, which might not be appreciated by some users, but it shouldn't be an issue for most, and if you like multimedia and gaming on your mobile phone then you are going to love this one.
On top of that, the phone features a touch sensitive layer which is accurate to the toe and works with the slightest of gestures. Users can also enable the high sensitivity mode if they feel the need, which can be a boon for bikers during those winter days.
Google has recently announced the launch of the latest refresh to its mobile platform, Android Lollipop. However, since even Google's own Nexus devices haven't got it properly yet, we have no issues whatsoever with the Vibe X2 flaunting the marginally older KitKat 4.4. On top of that, Lenovo has layered the Vibe user interface version 2.0, which has a number of new inclusions all designed for offering better functionality and utility to the users.
The icons, wallpapers and the drop-down notification panel sport a fair bit of customisation which make it stand apart from the crowd. In terms of utility, the UI offers similar usability as stock Android, in a more visually spruced-up manner. One of the key inclusions is the all-new lock screen which comes with an interesting bubble-based user interface. To access the home screen, all you need to do is swipe across, but if you pop the big bubble in the centre, it gives way to a number of smaller bubbles, seven to be specific. All these seven bubbles denote the most accessed apps and offer direct connect with them from the lock screen itself. The beauty of this lock screen is its self-learning mechanism that allows the software to keep a tab on the apps which you use more often, and accordingly make them appear on the lock screen.
There are a number of other additions that the brandhas done for offering better functionality. As an example, for super-fast image captures, all you need to do is double tap on the home key at the front of the device and it captures an image, following which the display comes on so you do not miss the moment while trying to unlock the device.
Along with this, the use interface also offer small yet functional features like a nifty data speed counter. This data speed counter keeps a tab on the data speed that you are getting and displays it in real time, really helpful in conditions where you are connected to the network and are not getting data. Having a live data speed counter becomes all the more useful especially with the device featuring support for 4G networks and high-speed data access as well.
There are many other features that the new Vibe UI 2.0 carries over from the older version featured on the Vibe Z2 Pro. For a glance at its features, head over to our review of the Lenovo Vibe Z2 Pro.
Along with many good things that this device has on offer, the Vibe X2 features an impressive 13-megapixel primary camera as well. Even though it misses out on features like OIS and zero shutter lag, the camera does offer great-looking images that too with a tight control on the quality aspect. The maximum resolution shot supported by the device offers a widescreen (16:9) image as default, as opposed to 4:3 images offered by most devices.
The device offers very accurate selective focus, making close-up photography a breeze. Along with that, the camera on the device captures colour variation beautifully. Despite the bad low-light performance, the device offers some impressive results when the flash module kicks in. The objects look full of detail and the flash module does not overpower images and offers neutral yet brighter looking results.
Along with the 13-meg rear shooter, there is a 5-megapixel front facing camera as well which comes with a zero-distortion lens. Mostly with front facing cameras users suffer with a barrel effect that happens due to the use of a wide-angle lens, while here the company has used a zero-distortion lens, which gives a wider area of capture to the camera without any distortions.
We have tested the primary shooter through a number of shots that try to emulate all the different type of photography scenarios. T0 check out the camera performance of the X2 in detail, do check out its camera review.
The Vibe X2 is the first device in India to flaunting the latest MediaTek 6595m octa-core processor clocked at an impressive 2GHz. The SoC is built on ARM’s bigLITTLE architecture making use of two separate quad-core processing clusters, with varying clock speeds, offering better power saving and faster performance as and when required.
This processor is the latest generation chip featuring the use of the new ARM cortex A17 instruction set promising as much as 20 percent better performance than its predecessor. For power computing the device gets a quad-core cluster based on ARM Cortex A17 running at 2GHz and for power savings and lower computing requirements, the chip gets a separate quad core cluster running at 1.6GHz. With the use of the new CorePilot technology from MediaTek, the processor can independently use all eight cores or a combination of cores to achieve the best possible result. Complementing the processor is 2GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage. However, there is no option of adding more storage.
As the popular benchmarking utilities describe the hardware on the Vibe X2, this is one device that beats the competition in the same price range, that too with a huge margin. What is more interesting that it also beats some of the bigger flagship devices from different brands, and even its bigger sibling the Z2 Pro easily in some of the benchmarks. To get a detailed low-down on the benchmarking and performance of the Vibe X2, head over to our benchmark report.
Apart from the processor, the Vibe X2 is the first dual-SIM Android smartphone in India featuring support for 4G networks on both the SIMs . With the newest software upgrade that the company has sent out, users can now choose between both the SIMs and select which SIM is to be used for data connection as well. In addition, the device also gets dual-active call functionality, which means that users can receive calls on the other SIM even while there is a call going on one of the numbers.
One of the major highlights of the new MediaTek processor is better control over battery consumption and with the Vibe X2 and its 2,300mAh battery, the device manages to go beyond a day. Even with heavy usage, the device should easily last through the day.
In our battery drain test, the Vibe X2 managed to offer close to seven hours and 20 minutes of playback time, where a 720p resolution video was played on the device in loop at 50 percent brightness and volume level.
3G data does not seem to have much difference on the battery life offered by the device, but what adverse effect 4G networks will bring to the table is something which we are unable to test out, since 4G networks are unavailable in the Delhi-NCR region.
The Lenovo Vibe X2 has been priced at Rs 19,999, at which it competes with devices such as the the Huawei Honor 6 and the elusive OnePlus One, which is an invite-only smartphone available at a slight premium. For the price, the Vibe X2 beats the Honor 6 in terms of performance while specifications-wise the latter might be marginally better. Overall, the device offers an all-round package complete with great looks, impressive performance and dual-SIM 4G connectivity to top it all up.
Photos by Pratik Vyas