If in the low segment ASUS showed its teeth, then on average it simply killed its competitors.
Seriously, if the ZenFone Max (M2) is up for that title, then the ultimate ZenFone Max Pro is the best buy right now.
Stuffed like a Chinese top; long-lasting and reliable, like an iPhone. Of course, all this balanced and cheap ASUS.
How did ZenFone Max Pro become the best smartphone of 2018?
ASUS corporate identity is recognizable at a glance
For those who managed to forget: last year, ASUS, which was systematically losing ground in the smartphone market, returned and conquered everyone with the thoughtful ZenFone Max in 3 versions with different fillings and prices.
It was the modification that gained true popularity. Pro ZB631KL: ASUS engineers combined all the trends, all the best practices in it. And they added their own zest.
The result was a smartphone of the son of my mother’s friend with a cool appearance, epic autonomy, good multimedia capabilities, a full set of interfaces lost during the evolution of smartphones.
Per 17 thousand with a normal camera, NFC and a separate memory card slot, it’s better than you can imagine. No one in the middle segment did this.
And today the review of the new version. Updated, updated, improved.
Metal vs. glass: the differences between Max and Max Pro
Metal or glass, budget or mid-price?
The first generation of smartphones offered the buyer plastic and metal as the main material, depending on the ZenFone model.
As we saw in the review of the younger ZenFone Max (M2), this time the budget version received a metal case, the older Pro is fashionable, stylish, glass on a metal frame.
The front side of the smartphone is surrounded by the latest version of tempered glass Gorilla Glass 6 with increased resistance to damage. They say it’s very hard to break.
So similar on the outside and so different on the inside
The glass looks great, is more scratch resistant, and heat dissipates well. On the other hand, in the hands of the uninitiated it seems like plastic.
“Gorilla” has reduced weight. But not the dimensions: ZenFone Max Pro (M2) thicker, bulkieralthough it’s not noticeable against the shiny back panel.
“Eyebrow” Max Pro (M2) is wider. But these are just flowers.
The slots, buttons and even the fingerprint sensor of these smartphones are exactly the same. And this is good!
The ZenFone Max Pro (M2) is the only full-featured mid-range smartphone to feature a triple slot and NFC (not found on the regular M2).
Content for everyone, content everywhere
Glass panels mounted on a metal frame
There is nothing to do in the middle class with an HD display, so the developers used an excellent matrix with FullHD+ (2280×1080).
Heaven and earth: A 6.3-inch screen stretched to a 19:9 ratio gets twice the pixel density. No artifacts, no visible pixels or grid.
However, the maximum brightness is reduced to 300 cd/m2but the black color almost corresponds to the off pixel with barely noticeable 0.3 cd/m2.
The display contrast is close to the top for similar IPS panels and is 1000:1. A movie with an abundance of dark scenes is a pleasure to watch – everything is distinguishable.
ZenFone Max Pro (M2) differs from the younger one in much more correct colors, more juicy and clear picture. An ideal mid-range display with excellent readability during the day and does not burn the eyes at night.
The right balance of performance
In the spirit of the times.
Last year’s Max Pro (M1) received a budget platform. The developers took into account the wishes of users and saved the novelty from this shortcoming.
Now the heart has become advanced Snapdragon 660 — mid-price modification of the flagship platform of last year.
A powerful video adapter, a bunch of various cores and a fast modem turned the new “firmware” into the ideal of a reasonable person: it works for a long time, drags everything and always.
Games? Yes please! Any top-end novelty at maximum speeds no problem. It is necessary and sufficient, but without excess.
Clean system = high performance
Only gamers-maniacs will be disappointed: contrary to current trends, ASUS did not inflate the amount of memory, limiting itself to 4 GB of fast RAM LPDDR4x.
The drive can be in 2 versions – 64 or 128 GB. As in the previous review, I advise the minimum salary: triple slot eliminates the need choose between microSD or second sim card.
A little about the most important little things
Both smartphones are equally good in the hand. But the glass is warm
Connection? Full set of 2G/3G/4G bands required in the CIS, including Vo-LTE. Naturally, Wi-Fi band, and Bluetooth – version 5.0.
The main thing: ASUS ZenFone Max Pro (M2) has NFC with Google Pay support, contactless tag recording and reading / writing to Troika.
From the position of a music lover, I will also mention the headphone jack: the sound through it is very pleasant. Although support aptX is also there.
Nothing but Yandex
We talked about the ASUS ZenFone Max operating system in a previous article. Here is the same “clean” Android 8.1 without pre-installed applications and launcher.
It is thanks to this that the smartphone works flawlessly even under serious load – nothing superfluous, only necessary.
When Dual Camera Really Works
The camera appears. And there is no case in the box to fix it.
Main camera double, but this is not surprising now: even basement manufacturers use it. However, in the hands of good engineers, this solution is capable of a lot.
ASUS does not hesitate to name the main sensor: 12-megapixel Sony IMX486 has established itself for a long time, it would be possible to limit it.
The application is improved compared to the standard one
Therefore, an additional 5 megapixel sensor is used only to correct photo parameters and “bokeh”.
Both sensors use the same fast lenses with a large aperture f/1.8 and focal 27 mm. From a technical point of view, everything is great.
Pictures are excellent in good light
The final result is also very good: the colors are accurate, the white balance is correct.
Photos are bright, juicy, full-sharp. With a lack of lighting, HDR helps out, which can stretch out night shooting.
Shadows, highlights – this camera captures everything
Front-camera uses a single 13-megapixel sensor and f/2.0 lens, and this Enough for highly detailed selfies anywhere and anytime.
Eternal smartphone-hard worker? It’s about ZenFone
Charging using old microUSB
ASUS specialists have deprived the ZenFone Max Pro (M2) of the main modern disadvantage: thanks to economical hardware and a huge battery on 5000 mAh it works freely for 2 days without recharging.
At the same time, without limiting the user in any way, since the charge is stable enough for 10 hours with the screen on.
Power saving mode increases the operating time by one and a half times
In more detail, with enabled wireless interfaces watching video over the network eats up reserves in the already mentioned 10 hours, heavy three-dimensional games in 5.5, and surfing in Chrome in about 8 hours.
Without interruption and restrictions on the work of applications in memory. Very good result for a smartphone with an IPS-matrix.
There is no fast charging, the maximum charge current is 5V / 2A. Each time you have to endure 2.5 hours of charging.
What to take
Simple and modern on the outside, powerful on the inside
ZenFone Max Pro (M2) has become the most successful ASUS smartphone – that M1, that M2 will appeal to all buyers. The advantages are many, the disadvantages in everyday use are invisible.
Comparing the Max Pro (M2) to the competition doesn’t make any sense: pure Android, the right choice of platform, NFC and excellent multimedia capabilities leave them no chance.
In the price range up to 20 thousand, the new ASUS has no competitors.
I recommend to buy. All stores in the country
one. Gorilla Glass 6 does not break, does not scratch and looks great.
2. The platform will allow you to solve any problems without overheating, throttling. And the battery will save, allowing you not to think about charging for 2-3 days.
3. Highly good camera with a nice pattern. The developers have done everything that is needed. The pictures will be a pleasure to look at.
four. “Clean” Android not only improves performance, but also updates more stable.
5. NFC and contactless payments are needed today. Now for them you do not need to buy a flagship.
Max (M2) or Max Pro (M2)? Watch by performance
one. In its price range, ASUS ZenFone Max Pro (M2) has no drawbacks.
You need him, and only him.
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