SuperD D1 Review
MyPhone, in partnership with SuperD, has brought a 3D-capable smartphone for the Filipino consumers. While MyPhone handsets are generally practical and cheap, this one is positioned to lead the path where the company is heading — multimedia. Here’s our review of the SuperD D1.
Design and Construction
The phone has a polycarbonate construction with 5.5-inch Full HD display that’s capable of showing 3D content which is the main selling point of the device. Above it are a couple of sensors, earpiece and two front-facing cameras, an 8MP shooter for taking selfies and a dedicated camera for eye tracking which enables the 3D magic. The phone relies on three unlit capacitive keys for UI navigation positioned below the display.
On its left-hand side is the card tray which accepts two micro SIM cards or a microSD card on the second slot for storage expansion. The sides are polycarbonate which leaves an unsatisfying impression.
To the right are the physical buttons for the volume rocker and power/lock button. Interestingly, the buttons are made out of metal, unlike the phone’s surrounding frame.
The top only has the 3.5mm headphone jack while the bottom end houses the microUSB port and the main microphone.
The rear of the phone is pretty busy with the noise-cancelling microphone, the main 13-megapixel camera with its LED flash, rounded fingerprint scanner, and the loudspeaker. The SuperD branding is also printed here just above the speaker grilles.
It’s clear that this is not a MyPhone device with no Philippine map printed on the back but the phone, again, is exclusively distributed MyPhone in the country.
Display and Multimedia
The display is the main feature of the D1. The panel is a 1080p IPS LCD topped with lenticular lens which make it glasses-free 3D. The panel, when in 2D, is sufficiently bright but not enough to be usable in under bright sunlight. Overall picture quality is good with wide-viewing angles and vibrant color reproduction.
The gap that the lenticular lens occupy is hardly noticeable when not in use but during 3D playback, the lens kick into action. It’s hard to show in pictures so to give you a better idea how the screen looks like, let’s walk down the memory lane. Remember the classic rulers with a 3D image printed onto them? It’s exactly like that but with a moving image. The image is jagged and losses its high-definition quality but in return, you get to experience 3D without annoying glasses.
The effect seems more of a novelty as we find ourselves using it only when we want to check out a particular short clip. The 3D is not limited to videos though as there are also some supported games.
The backfiring loudspeakers are adequate to fill a small room but we strongly suggest plugging in a pair of headphones especially for VR.
OS, Apps, and UI
The phone runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with SuperD’s custom skin on top. The tweak is pretty heavy with the iOS-like frosted glass effect and swipe-from-below quick toggles. There’s no app drawer as well which is quite popular among Chinese smartphones.
Despite that, MyPhone made sure that the phone they are shipping here is tailored to work with the usual services we are accustomed too. There’s the Google Play Store plus a suite of Google apps pre-loaded out of the box. The MyPhone Pinoy Content services are absent, though.
About 9.11GB of the 32GB internal storage is occupied by the OS but a there’s a bunch of pre-loaded content with our review unit already and it’s hard to exactly say how much you can use for personal data.
On paper, the cameras on the D1 are the usual 13-megapixel rear shooter with autofocus and an 8-megapixel selfie cam. The camera launcher is a rip-off of iOS’ and simple to use.
We’re surprised with the quality of the stills from the phone. The rear camera was able to capture detailed and sharp photos given that’s there a lot of light coming into the sensor. Low-light performance is average with the color balance leaning on the warm side. The front takes bright selfies with beautification mode built-in and a face-scanning, yet creepy, age detection feature.
The video is okay and maxes out at 1080p. A full-blown playback shows strong sharpening but it doesn’t make the clip unusable for social media posting or a quick motion picture memory.
Performance and Benchmarks
What’s powering the SuperD’s phone is a MediaTek MT6750T octa-core processor that’s clocked at 1.5GHz. It’s paired with the Mali-T860 MP2 GPU and 3GB of RAM. SuperD also has an additional mobile GPU to give a hand in processing 3D content and VR. For everyday use, the D1 can fly through apps and quick navigation. App performance is also pretty good with sufficient memory to spare for multitasking.
Gaming-wise, performance is so-so. You get to play quality titles smoothly as long as you keep settings in check. Asphalt 8 can be played in high settings but NBA 2K17 needs to be lowered to attain a playable framerate.
As for 3D content, the dedicated mobile GPU works well, at least most of the time. There are occasional stutters during 3D playback that ruins the fun. It’s best to clear opened apps before doing 3D.
We did our usual benchmark tests and here are the results:
- AnTuTu Benchmark v6.2.7 — 46265
- Geekbench 4 — 603 (Single), 2573 (Multi)
- PCMark — 2926 (Work 2.0), (Work 1.0), (Storage)
- Vellamo — 2323 (Chrome), 1160 (Metal), 2087 (Multicore)
- 3DMark — 378 (Sling Shot Extreme)
Based on our time with the SuperD D1, we’d say in needs more memory and processing power to truly deliver 3D.
Call Quality and Connectivity
Phone calls with the D1 are good with strong reception and loud earpiece. It also has a noise-cancelling microphone which always a plus.
As for connectivity, this phone has 4G LTE with a good scope of locally utilized frequencies apart from the new 700MHz Band 28. We were able to get a 4G+ signal in key areas like Ayala Alabang and Bonifacio Global City. Both Smart and Globe LTE networks will play well here. There’s also Bluetooth 4.1, Wi-Fi, and standard GPS onboard.
A 3000mAh battery cell provides juice to the handset and it is non-removable despite the phone’s plastic build. Anyhow, with a fair amount of SMS and calling plus consistent mobile data on, the phone was able to last a work day with around 3 hours of screen on time.
PCMark, on the other hand, gave the phone a score of 7 hours and 45 minutes under its Work 1.0 battery test. Our traditional video loop test lasted for about 9 hours. Nothing stellar but not that bad as well.
The SuperD D1 is a phone for entertainment use. Media consumption is the special function of the handset on top of being your daily driver. But, is it enough? It depends on who’d you ask. The D1 is more than an everyday smartphone but it’s also not an exceptional 3D phone on its own. Our thoughts are mixed-bag but we don’t see 3D as an in-demand form of mobile entertainment at this point in time.
The SuperD D1 is priced at Php11,999 but it’s currently listed on Lazada for just Php9,999 (listing here). It comes in Galaxy silver and Champagne gold colors with a free VR headset.
SuperD D1 specs:
5.5-inch 3D-capable Full HD display, 401ppi
1.5GHz MediaTek MT6750T octa-core processor
Mali-T860 MP2 GPU
SuperD 3D/VR mobile GPU
32GB internal storage
Expandable via microSD
13MP autofocus rear camera w/ LED flash
8MP front-facing camera + dedicated eye tracking camera
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
GPS w/ A-GPS
6-axis gyroscope sensor
Android 6.0 Marshmallow
SuperD VR Store
152 x 75.7 x 8.9 mm
- Unique glasses-free 3D display
- Enjoy 3D content on-the-go
- Bundled virtual reality experience
- Decent camera performance
- Quite expensive compared to China’s SRP
- Limited 3D and VR store content library
- Plastic build