Lenovo Vibe X3 Review
Display and Multimedia
Sporting a 5.5-inch IPS LCD plus front-firing stereo speakers, the Vibe X3 is positioned to be a multimedia consumption device. The display shows off well-saturated hues with pleasing contrast and has wide viewing angles. Its full HD resolution (1920×1080 pixels) gives it a sharp 401ppi density. The panel gets very bright; so outdoor use is not a problem for the handset. The less reflective glass also helps with sunlight legibility.
The front speaker, as already cited, is a stereo system and has an output of 1.5W each. If you’ve tried a similar setup before, you can attest that this gives the best possible multimedia experience in terms of audio. Aside from that, the speakers are also of good quality with decent treble and bass. Loudness is also in check as it gets pretty loud, even able to fill in a small room with clear audio. You can tweak the sound using the Dolby Atmos app and there’s a HiFi option when using earphones thanks to the DAC 32-bit processor inside.
OS, Apps, and UI
The Vibe X3 runs Android 5.1 Lollipop with its own Vibe UI on top. The custom UI is really not our cup of tea but it complements the overall look and feel of the handset, giving it a touch of Lenovo in the sea of smartphones.
This time around, the Chinese manufacturer gives the option to consumers to choose between having a single layer home screen ala iOS or have the more familiar app tray of Android. Either way, the change is minimal and each other preference is the right answer which one is better. Moving on, the Vibe UI is rather colorful than a minimal interface and it occupies 7.58GB (according to storage settings) of the 32GB internal storage.
Onboard the Vibe X3 is the usual set of apps from the manufacturer which we already questioned the inclusion of unpopular apps. Good thing, they can be uninstalled except for the Peel Smart Remote because you’ll need it to utilize the IR blaster on top. It worked fine when we tested the app on our TV and cable box. It also has some local content guide which is great.
The TheaterMax feature of new Lenovo Vibe devices is simple and straightforward. Although it’s not a full virtual reality experience, you can turn any content into a personal show using the ANT VR headset which is bundled with purchase. VR games from the Play Store works okay but there’s no mean of control on the headset. If you have a controller for Android, you can immersively play any traditional games.
Equipped with a 21-megapixel rear shooter with a f/2.0 lens and phase detection autofocus, the device is capable of giving a justifiable performance in most scenarios. It even has 4K video and slow-motion recording feature.
Day shots are pleasing with good amount of details and typical sharpness. But, the night shots are bit different in terms of detail. You can check out some chosen samples below:
The front-facing camera, pegged at 8-megapixels, has an unusual narrow FOV but overall performance is decent at best. Check it out for yourself:
When it comes to video, there’s a 4K option to push those pixels. In broad daylight, quality is good with plenty of details but the audio quality is less desirable. Here’s a full resolution sample that was taken in the middle of the day: