ASUS Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Review
ASUS Philippines just introduced its Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition which builds on top of the Deluxe that we saw earlier this year. The limited edition handset comes with slightly tweaked processor, 256GB of total storage, and a few other special goodies that go along with the package.
Since this is just a facelift of the Zenfone 2 Deluxe we reviewed back in October, we’ll be incorporating some of its sections into this one.
Display and Multimedia
Just like the Deluxe, the Special Edition flaunts a 5.5-inch display that fits 1080p resolution. It is then protected by Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3 that should defend it against light scratches. As usual, three capacitive buttons are present and don’t light up.
As you have already seen on our hands-on article, the new Deluxe has the same tessellated back cover that shows off a crystalline look. Only this time it’s been changed with a silver color. The package also includes an additional back plate designed like carbon fiber. It turns the handset more of a gaming device unlike the premium-like quality of the silver tessellated panel.
Truly, it’s not something usual that you see on smartphones so it will most likely make you give a second look. We’ve had it only for a while but those who have seen it are already expressing their curiosity about the phone.
The smartphone is equipped with a 13-megapixel PixelMaster rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and real-tone dual flash right above it. It’s different from the Selfie or Laser since both of those have the flash on the side, rather than up top. Below the sensor, we still have the volume rocker layered with the company’s concentric circle design.
Popping the back plate open, you would be greeted with its unremovable battery with a capacity of 3000mAh. Also hidden here are the dual-SIM slots and memory expansion via microSD.
Display and Multimedia
The display used is similar to its selfie-centric sibling with Full HD (1920 x 1080 resolution) fitted inside a 5.5-inch screen. They both sport In-Plane Switching (IPS) panels that give wide-viewing angles, but the Deluxe only has Gorilla Glass 3 while the Selfie has the Gorilla Glass 4 built-in.
Images were saturated enough, although not as vibrant as the Lenovo A7000 Plus that we reviewed. There’s still some degree of outdoor visibility but the screen is also very reflective especially under direct sunlight. When indoors, cranking up the brightness at the lowest level is still comfortable and ideal brightness level would be around 70%. This means the display is still very usable even at lower brightness settings allowing you to conserve more battery life.
The display is also protected by a very tough Corning Gorilla Glass 3 in order to avoid the usual hairline scratches on the glass panel. Nevertheless, we think a lot of new owners would still put an additional tempered glass or protective film once they open their units out of the box.
The large screen is just about right when surfing the web, watching movies or playing games for a couple of hours. The screen color mode allows you to change the color temperature of the display to your liking. There are also color presets like Balance, Reading, Vivid and a custom one you can save.
Asus claims a screen-to-body ratio of 72% which is right around the alley of the OnePlus One (71.9%), Lenovo Vibe Z ( 72.7%), OPPO Find 7 (72.9%) while the LG G3 is at 76.3%.
The loudspeakers at the back sounded good, has decent volume range but did not have bass in it. The four rows of pinholes for the loudspeaker is just for symmetry since opening the back cover will reveal the speakers to be smaller and flushed to the left side. The earphones that came with it are good too but nothing really spectacular about them.