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Optoma NuForce BE Live2 Review: Budget earbuds with premium audio
Optoma has launched a new pair of wireless earbuds, an inexpensive model featuring a premium design and the promise of high-quality audio. As with the company’s previous BE2 earbuds, the new BE Live2 cost $49 USD, packing a more attractive design coupled with support for AAC audio, ultra-long battery life, and more.READ: Optoma NuForce BE2 Earbuds Review
The new NuForce BE Live2 features highly polished, oval-shaped ear pieces connected to a flat cable with a clasps and in-line remote control. The control unit includes a micro USB port for charging; when fully charged, the earbuds provide around 10 hours of run time per charge.
As has become common with wireless earbuds of all varieties, the BE Live2 have magnets in the ear pieces that enable the two components to snap together when not in use. This would be difficult due to the rounded, polished design, so Optoma elected to put an indentation on the end of one ear piece; the opposite ear piece’s rounded end nestles nicely within the indentation, preventing the two components from sliding apart.
The earbuds are controlled as any standard pair of wireless headphones: pressing and holding the power button puts the model into pairing mode, at which point they can be connected to a smartphone or other Bluetooth audio source.
In future instances, the model automatically pairs with the same device when the earbuds are powered on. Users have in-line audio control, the ability to play and pause audio, and support for summoning a personal assistant like Google Assistant and Siri.
This model is made from aluminum and polycarbonate; the cable is reinforced with Kevlar. Optoma designed the BE Live2 to be compatible with an active lifestyle, which means an IPX5 water- and sweat-resistance rating.
Optoma claims its design offers better noise isolation and stability versus other models. Though ambient noises are only muffled when audio isn’t playing, they are all but entirely eliminated once any level of audio is played.
Stability is excellent due to each ear piece’s slight inward angle. It sometimes takes a few tries to situation the ear pieces comfortably within the ear canal, but the fit remains very solid afterward, including during moments of frequent movement, such as while on an elliptical machine.
Optoma is targeting audiophiles and other discerning listeners with the new BE Live2. The company packed 6mm drivers into the newest model and paired them with “non-fatiguing” audio tuning. There is also support for AAC audio.
When compared to other wireless earbuds in the same price range, the NuForce BE Live2’s audio quality is indeed impressive. The company didn’t fall into the trap of excessive bass as a cover for lackluster quality; spoken content, such as podcasts, are offered with very balanced, crisp audio. There’s very little distortion during high volume levels.
The earbuds’ build quality and audio quality are both excellent — and that’s regardless of the model’s relatively inexpensive price. There are no apparent compromises in construction or audio, the end result being earbuds that sound and feel like a premium product.
Optoma is offering the BE Live2 through its website now for $49 USD.
You're reading Optoma Nuforce Be Live2 Review: Budget Earbuds With Premium Audio
You see, an earbud needs to meet a couple of criteria to become one of the bests. For example, you have to consider the sound quality, battery life, comfort level, features, and, most importantly, the value for the money.
Now, looking for an earbud by keeping all the crucial factors in mind can be challenging. That’s exactly why we have curated this short list for you!
Best Wireless Earbuds for Android and iPhone
Sony WF-1000XM4 – Best All-rounder Earbuds
Hands down, the Sony WF-1000XM4 offers one of the most dynamic, balanced, and detailed sounds our ears have ever listened to. We were thoroughly impressed with its bass notes too! The buds sound tight and well-textured, which we hardly see in most other Bluetooth earphones.
Sony has also refined the vocal ooze on the WF-1000XM4. The musical delivery of the buds will surely make you come back for more. And not to mention that you will not be disappointed with the battery life of the buds. Sony WF-1000XM4 offers class-leading eight hours of battery. So you don’t have to charge it often.
Up to 24 hours with the case
LDAC, AAC, and SBC
Panasonic RZ-S500W – Best Feature Packed Affordable Wireless Earbuds
Basically, the RZ-S500W has everything you want in a good wireless earbud but comes at a highly affordable price point. Firstly, you have excellent noise-canceling tech. So you can jam to your favorite tracks without minimal distractions.
Then, the buds have twin mics for handling all your voice call needs. Its battery life is amazing too. With the charging case, you can get up to 19.5 hours of run time. And thanks to the USB-C quick-charge feature, the buds can offer 70 minutes of playback with just 15 minutes of charge. Finally, the RZ-S500W comes with five different ear tips, which makes it easier to get a comfortable and secure fit.
Up to 19.5 hours with the case
AAC and SBC
Sony WF-C500 – Best Cheap Wireless EarphonesGizchina News of the week
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You really do not have to spend a lot to get a good-performing pair of earbuds. Finding it hard to believe? Check out the WF-C500 from Sony!
At its core, the WF-C500 is a no-frills version of the WF-1000XM4. But they are not as expensive as the WF-1000XM4. Yes, you will not find the latest and the greatest audio features in them. But that does mean that the WF-C500 can’t offer great audio performance.
To be honest, the sound is nicely balanced on these buds. You can hear a lot of mid-range detail. Moreover, the battery life of these buds is the highest on this list. With a full charge, the WF-C500 buds can offer up to 10 hours of playback time. And the buds even have Google Fast Pair!
Up to 20 hours with the case
AAC and SBC
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II – Best Premium Wireless Earbuds
The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II have got praised by everyone that uses it. We, too, are amazed by everything Bose brought to the table. In fact, we think that the QC Earbuds II is the definition of “Premium Wireless Earbuds.”
Wondering what is so great about the Bose QuiteComfort Earbuds II? As the name suggests, the buds have an amped-up design that leans heavily toward comfort. It also comes with excellent noise-canceling tech, letting you enjoy your favorite tracks in peace.
Additionally, the buds are packed with features. It has Bluetooth 5.3, which we rarely see on earbuds. The buds also come bundled with Bose app. It will let you change EQ and adjust the noise-canceling according to your preference. And let’s not forget to mention that the sound output is neutral and balanced.
Battery life: Up to 30 hours with the case
Bluetooth: AAC and SBC
Apple AirPods Pro 2 – Best Wireless Earbuds for iPhone
Apple AirPods have always been a safe option for iPhone users. The integrated chip makes the buds easier to pair and adjust. But that is not the only thing that makes the AirPods Pro 2 stand out.
The AirPods Pro 2 has class-leading noise-canceling tech. Also, the design and fit are great for casual music listening and workouts. There’s even an Adaptive Transparency mode, which will muffle loud sounds but let in ambient sound.
Furthermore, the sound quality of the drivers is pretty much in-line with the other high-end earbuds. In short, you can not really go wrong with the Apple AirPods Pro 2.
Battery life: Up to 30 hours with the case
Bluetooth: AAC and SBC
Best TWS Earbuds in 2023
A 4K smartphone might seem like something you want but you really don’t need it and it’s an expensive card to play in order to trump your mates. The device is also big, uncomfortable and brash. Hardware is the same as the regular Z5 so it really comes down to the screen, which doesn’t even display 4K much of the time. We strongly recommend steering clear of the Premium which is this year’s most unnecessary phone and sticking to the regular Z5 or one its alternatives.
One of the surprise announcements of IFA 2023, back in September, was Sony’s Xperia Z5 Premium which is the first 4K smartphone to make the light of day. After some proper time with the new phone, here’s our full and in-depth Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review.
Also see: Best Black Friday Phone Deals
Also announced at IFA 2023 by Sony was the Sony Xperia Z5 and the Sony Xperia Z5 Compact. Sony faces tough competition in the smartphone market and the unique selling point of the Premium is something which it helps will differentiate it from rivals such as Apple and Samsung.Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Price and competition
As you might expect from the world’s first 4K phone, the price of the Xperia Z5 Premium lives up to its name. Sony’s official price for the handset is a whopping £629. This makes it one of the most expensive phones on the market along with the iPhone 6S Plus which costs up to £789 and the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+ which can set you back up to £719 – the Z5 Premium doesn’t even include headphones either.
You’re better off buying the Xperia Z5 Premium elsewhere as Clove is selling it for £600 with free accessories while Amazon has it for a fairly reasonable £576.Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Design and build
This is the most recognisable of the Z5 range with since it’s the largest of the three and, oh yeah, it’s shiny mirrored finish. The device will be available in Chrome, Gold and Black options and we took a look at the very bling Chrome option. Also see: Best MiFi 2023.
It might make the device look fancy and you can check your makeup or do your hair my looking in the back, but you’ll be forever polishing it to get rid of fingerprint marks and smudges which appear the first time you pick it up.
Things go from gleaming to grubby in a matter of seconds so we prefer the frosted glass of the other Z5 phones.
If you can bear owning a phone this shiny then the Z5 Premium has the same design features as its smaller counterparts. This means its waterproof with only a flap to cover the slot which houses the SIM-card and Micro-SD card slot.
It also means the Z5 has a new power button so the iconic round one is gone and has been replaced with a flat rectangle. Sounds a bit boring but it’s because it now has a fingerprint scanner built-in. We’ve tried it out and it’s fast, accurate and is placed on the phone better than any other we’ve seen exactly where your thumb naturally lies.
At 7.8mm, the Premium is a little thicker than the regular Xperia Z5 but it’s not that which we’re worried about. The phone weighs 180g which is pretty colossal and more than other phones with the same screen size – even the brick-like OnePlus 2 is lighter at 175g so this is a serious drawback of the Z5 Premium.
We can understand why Sony has kept the same rectangular shape for the Premium to match the other Z5 phones, but at this size it makes for a rather uncomfortable and unwieldy experience.
A smaller problem is that the volume rocker is situated below the power button which makes it pretty awkward to use. That’s the same as previous Xperia handsets but it’s lower down this time around.
As usual, one of the key selling points is that the Z5 Premium is dust- and waterproof to an IP68 rating which is great to see. There is only one flap, too, making life a lot easier.Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: All about the 4K screen and content
Let’s jump straight into the most exciting section of the Xperia Z5 Premium’s spec sheet which is that 4K screen. Sony has skipped Quad HD entirely and is the first manufacturer to bring us a resolution on a phone which most people don’t even have on their TV or computer monitor yet.
That’s right, the Xperia Z5 Premium offers a 2160×3840 resolution on a 5.5in, meaning a jaw dropping pixel density of 806ppi. That beats the Galaxy S6 by a long way which has touts 577ppi.
Sure this phone has some serious top trump credentials in this department and people at the pub might not even believe that it’s Ultra HD but the numbers on the spec sheet make up a very small part of the full picture here.
In comparison with the regular Xperia Z5, the premium model doesn’t have as much brightness available and colours are slightly less punchy – the latter is more a personal thing and I actually prefer it a bit more laid back.
There’s a good reason for this and you can probably guess what it is. Driving all those pixels 100 percent of time would result in a serious dip in both performance and battery life. The other reason is that Android 5.1 Lollipop doesn’t support 4K resolution.
The latest, 6.0 Marshmallow, does and an update is coming but even then it’s designed for up to 640ppi which Google describes as ‘extra-extra-extra-high density’ which is a fair way off the Premium’s 806ppi. When the update does arrive, we doubt Sony will simply remove the downscaling.
So when exactly do you get 4K on the only 4K phone around? Well not often; you need to open Sony’s own Album, and Video apps which will display content in the full resolution. This means you’re most likely to see 4K when viewing photos and videos you’ve captured with the phone. Third party services such as Netflix and YouTube have 4K content but this isn’t what you’ll get on the phone.
Our conclusion on the 4K screen of the Xperia Z5 Premium is that thing can look great on it with excellent amounts of detail. However, it’s extremely limited and really not that different compared to Quad HD phones.
At the moment, 4K on a phone is simply a mismatch and we think the need to downscale proves this.Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Other hardware and specs
So is there anything else other than the 4K screen to tempt you to buy the Premium model over the other Z5 phones on the hardware side?
Well not really, the Xperia Z5 Premium also has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB internal storage and a Micro-SD card slot for adding up to 200GB more which is the same line-up as the regular Z5 – the Compact is only different with 2GB of RAM.
As you can see below the phone benchmarked almost identical numbers to the regular Z5 due to the downscaling of the resolution. We’ve found the phone to be smooth and responsive in use.
The battery is larger, since there’s more space for it, but battery life is similar to the Z5. The 3430mAh capacity provided five hours and 49 minutes with a score of 3491 in our Geekbench 3 test. Not a bad result but still two or three hours behind the leaders.
As you would expect from a phone which costs over £600, you get a lot of the latest tech on-board. The Z5 Premium features dual-band 11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1 with aptX, NFC, GPS and support for 4G LTE networks.
Sony has opted against a Type-C reversible USB port for now but that’s not the end of the world at the moment. The Micro-USB port is at least waterproof without a flap but we’d like to see wireless charging included for such a high-end phone.
Like the other Z5 phones, a big addition is the fingerprint scanner. But we don’t mean in size as it’s somehow squeezed into the power button on the size. The scanner is quick and accurate and has the best placement on the device we’ve experienced. It’s even easy to use with the Z5 Premium on a flat surface without picking it up.
It’s also got the same camera which is a new 23Mp sensor with some improvements too such as faster auto focus (just 0.03 seconds according to Sony), x5 digital zoom without a loss of quality and the best low light performance.
We love that Sony has kept the physical two-stage camera button which makes photography that bit easier and feels more professional. The focus is amazingly fast and is easily one of the quickest we’ve seen helping you shoot more freely.
Be default the camera shoots at 8Mp, not the full 23Mp, so that the extra pixels can be used for oversampling. We’re not convinced by the Clear Image Zoom feature and while low light performance is good, the lack of optical stabilisation is a big omission here and something we’d expect Sony to offer.
The camera is very good but just not as good as Sony makes out. At the front is a 5Mp camera which is about as good as you might expect – good but nothing out of the ordinary.Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Software
There are new Nexus phones running Android 6.0 Marshmallow now but the Z5 Premium comes pre-loaded with version 5.1 Lollipop. As mentioned earlier, an upgrade will come but we can only review it like it is now.
Sony hasn’t really done much on the software side so it’s really about the design and hardware here. Previous users, and even those coming from a different Android manufacturer will feel at home.
As with previous Xperia phones the user interface is fairly vanilla so Sony has decided to use the stock Android Lollipop notification bar and recent apps menu. But it does add all the Sony style like normal including wallpapers, widgets, floating apps and own-brand apps like Walkman and PlayStation.
All the Sony Xperia Z5 phones come with Xperia Lounge Gold access but they come pre-loaded with some third party apps like OfficeSuite, AVG, Dropbox and Facebook. These do take up space and we’d rather choose what to install but Sony does allow you to uninstall them so it’s not so bad.Specs Sony Xperia Z5 Premium: Specs
Android 5.1 Lollipop
5.5in 4K IPS (2160×3840, 806ppi)
2.2GHz Quad-Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 CPU
Adreno 430 GPU
32GB internal storage
microSD slot (up to 200GB)
23Mp rear camera AF with LED Flash
5Mp front camera
Video recording at up to 2160p
Wi-Fi up tp chúng tôi LTE Cat 6
Dust and waterproof (IP68)
Lets delve into the details, in the Landvo L200S review!
The Landvo L200S is a well made phone with a very recognizable chrome frame… support for 4G LTE is what sets the phone apart from other budget MT6582 phones besides the build. Decent battery life and great GPS performance make the L200S a worthy buy, but we feel that in this cut-throat market, the L200S could do much better with a price tag that’s closer to the $100 mark than the $150, as it stands right now.
Landvo L200S Review: Specifications
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Landvo L200S Review: In the box
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Here’s what is shipped in the Landvo L200S retail box:
Landvo L200S smartphone
USB to micro USB cable
Landvo L200S Review: Unboxing
Landvo L200S Review: Build and design
Right off the bat, the phone loses one point thanks to the design being lifted from the flagship killer of last year… aka the OnePlus One. It isn’t a 1:1 clone, like the No.1 Mi4 is of the Xiaomi Mi 4, but instead a downsized design with pretty much the same geometry. This also means that the 5-inch Landvo L200S is one-hand operable unlike the OnePlus One with its 5.5-inch screen.
The USB port makes a move from the bottom chin to the top edge on the Landvo L200S, when compared to the OnePlus One. It’s accompanied by a 3.5mm jack here.
The right edge makes space for both, the volume buttons and the power button. These are some of the most tactile buttons, and have enough feedback to make you realize you’ve actually pressed the button… and that it has been recognized. Nothing again on the bottom edge aka the chin!
There’s no squeaking or anything whatsoever, and the general build impression is pretty good. Landvo have tried to replicate the Sandstone Black finish of the OnePlus One, which is of course not possible when you’re talking about a phone that’s less than half the price. Yet, the L200S has a very grippy and satisfying rear case, with a touch of rubber to it for the added grip.
Like the OnePlus One, there’s a chrome frame around the screen which pops out to give a double edge sort of a feel. We’re not yet sure if its metal or plastic, but it does feel like metal (aluminium, perhaps).
In all, the Landvo L200S does look like a phone that can take a couple drops without breaking into pieces.
Landvo L200S Review: Performance
The MT6582 (and variants thereof) have been in the market for over a year now, so there isn’t a lot to speak of about the device’s performance. The MT6582 is a proven SoC, it even features on Google’s Android One phones. The SoC has a 1.3GHz quad-core Cortex A7 CPU, that seems to be tailor made for budget phones. When it was initially launched, phones with the MT6582 sold for around the US$160-180 mark, however with time prices hit rock bottom and such phones are now available for around US$80, one example being the tried and tested Cubto S168. Android One phones, although restricted only to select markets, go for about US$100 a piece. So, at US$130, the Landvo L200S isn’t particularly VFM especially when you’re strictly talking about processing prowess.
Other than that, the phone holds up extremely well. Multitasking can be a little laggy at times, but that’s because of the bottleneck caused by RAM more than anything else. Newer and applications that are heavy on resource usage such as Chrome, Facebook, etc. tend to lag a bit at times though (Chrome especially). Again, that’s more because of the RAM. Lollipop should make things better, but there’s no update in sight as yet so you’re better off not waiting for one, unless the L200S gets really popular, that is.
Landvo L200S Review: DisplayGizchina News of the week
Landvo L200S Review: Camera
There’s an 8 mega-pixel sensor on the back of the Landvo L200S, which takes some decent photos in daylight but leaves quite a bit to be desired in darker conditions. In other words, its just another sensor in this world of inexpensive Chinese smartphones; generalizing isn’t the best thing to do but there’s so less that differentiates such phones that it’s tough to tell exactly what’s different.
Compare this to say the Cubot S168, we would prefer the latter even though it has only a 5 mega-pixel sensor compared to the 8 mega-pixel on this one, which goes to show (yet again) that companies are pretty much fooling buyers with bloated up pixel count, etc. There are 8 mega-pixel cameras, and there an 8 mega-pixel cameras.
Dynamic range suffers a little too, which is when its best to be patient and take pictures in HDR. This is again something very common for budget phones like the one in question here, but we’re certain its about time that OEMs get it fixed.
There’s a bunch of effects on the camera app, but you should probably only worry about auto, HDR and panorama (beauty mode too, depending on how you prefer to take your selfies).
Landvo L200S Review: UI
Thankfully, Landvo have left the UI extremely untouched, save for a couple modifications with are actually desirable. This includes the customary scheduled on/off feature, and then the off-screen gestures (more on this later). What we also like is the fact that unlike a lot of other phones, we see stock, untouched icons on the homescreen and app drawer. Landvo haven’t gone for the ever-so-ugly rounded icon imitation look that almost every up and coming manufacturer appears to yearn for these days.
Another non-intrusive customization is the lockscreen ring which now bears the company name. Coming back to off-screen gestures, the phone has a predefined list which can be accessed at Settings – Accessibility – Smart Wake. Unfortunately, the gestures cannot be paired with applications of your choice, so you’re limited to the ones listed by the company.
Double tap to wake, swipe up to unlock and ‘v’ to turn on flashlight are the ones we think are most useful.
Landvo L200S Review: Battery
In a nutshell, battery life on the L200S is satisfactory. There’s a ‘standby intelligent power saving mode’ which surprisingly actually seems to work. The phone does lose a bit of power looking for signal while you’re on the move, but once you’ve settled on a cell tower there’s hardly any power loss in standby, given the signal is strong enough. So, if your daily commute is long, you might get different results. In other words, Your Mileage May Vary depending on how much you keep the phone on the move.
Speaking of numbers, it’s a 2000mAh battery. Other small-time makers may be putting up specs sheets listing larger batteries, but unfortunately most of that is blatant lie. Of course there’s no foolproof method to check battery capacity in this case either, but from our experience it is easy to tell this is indeed a 2000mAh cell.
Landvo L200S Review: GPS
It seems that either MediaTek has sorted its GPS issues, or manufacturers have realized that fooling consumers with a good-for-nothing antenna will take them nowhere… which is why we’re starting to see some decent GPS performance from budget phones. The L200S does extremely well on this regard as well, with a very quick fix and decent accuracy levels. However, the phone does not appear to have a compass; you’ll have to rely on your gut feeling to decide if you’re right about that.
Outdoors, the phone was extremely quick to latch on to a GPS lock (3 seconds), however it can be quite slow indoors.
Other points to note…
There’s not a lot we have to complain for this one, but a some niggles we faced were: (i) off-screen gestures take up more battery than normal, and also get triggered in the pocket at times. A simple fix is to keep the phone screen facing out, but you have to consciously do that. (ii) there seem to be network drops every now and then, which is a bit of a serious issue. We haven’t really faced this on any other budget phone in this category of late, and we hope its only a software issue which Landvo does take care of ultimately (fingers crossed). (iii) even though not a lot of MT6582 phones exhibit this, but the L200S does heat up around the camera module when used for long-ish durations. Nothing extraordinary, but again nothing which you can ignore without getting worried too. Lastly, (iv) the phone has a notification LED which again doesn’t really work except when you’re charging the phone, and when battery is low. We don’t really understand why manufacturers do this; an RGB LED is a minimum requirement as far as we’re concerned. What the L200S has gives the impression of a half-baked product, for something which otherwise is quite a decent device.
Landvo L200S Review: Verdict
In itself, the Landvo L200S is a good phone for anyone who’s looking to get fast LTE data on a budget device. Like every other product on the planet (save for the cheeseburger), there are some flaws on the device… which include, and are largely limited to, the ones listed above. If a phone like the Cubot S168 can be bought for around US$80, the Landvo L200S should go for not more than US$100-110. Yes it has an LTE modem, but then it certainly doesn’t cost half as much as the other components’ cost combined. You can expect to pay a premium for your want (read: high-speed data), but even then at US$125 the Landvo L200S is about US$15-20 over what it should be priced.
Thanks again to popular online store Geekbuying who made this review possible. The Landvo L200S can be bought from their store by visiting this link. As a special offer for GizChina readers, the coupon code BHDQPNEZ can be applied at checkout to avail a $8 discount!
The first Redmi 8-series phone to make its way to the UK, the Redmi Note 8T offers extraordinary value at £179. This is a mid-ranger with a budget price, offering a 48Mp quad-lens camera, a 6.3in AMOLED display, a 4,000mAh battery and a capable Snapdragon 665 processor. It adds NFC and 18W wired charging to the Redmi Note 8 elsewhere. You’ll struggle to find better value for money anywhere else.
Previously unavailable outside China and Europe, the Redmi 8 series today makes its way to the UK, starting with the Redmi Note 8T. Available from the Mi Store at £179 SIM-free, or on contract through Three on contract or SIM-free at £169.99, this is an NFC-enabled update to the Redmi Note 8 that also adds 18W wired charging.
GearBest is another vendor of the new Redmi Note 8T, though it is currently awaiting more stock.
(You might also appreciate our Best Xiaomi deals coverage.)
Though various colour options and specifications exist within Europe, in the UK you can buy the Moonshadow Grey model through Xiaomi itself or the Starscape Blue model through Three, both with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. As with others in the line this model supports microSD expansion up to 256GB, which is possible using a hybrid SIM tray that can alternatively accept two SIM cards.
This is a mid-ranger with a budget price, and a new contender for our best budget phone chart, currently championed by the Redmi Note 7. It headlines with a 2GHz Snapdragon 665 octa-core processor and a 4,000mAh cell for two-day battery life. The 6.3in 19.5:9 full-HD display uses a Dot Drop (waterdrop) notch to house a 13Mp selfie camera, but the real star is the 48Mp camera at the rear – one of four lens that make up the Note 8T’s primary camera.
Aside from this 48Mp lens, which is able to use pixel-binning to combine four pixels into one and create much better quality 12Mp images, the Note 8T has 8Mp ultra-wide, 2Mp Macro and 2Mp depth sensors.
Our colleague Alfonso Casas, of sister site PCWorld.es, had the opportunity to test in-depth the Redmi Note 8T, and has been impressed with the sheer value it offers. Here are his findings:Design & features
Our first impression of Redmi Note 8T out of the box was that it is somewhat bulky, heavy at 199g and rather chunky for today’s standards at 8.6mm thick.
That’s not to say it is inelegant, with its rounded sides and curved glass at the rear allowing it to fit right in with more premium models.
This is Gorilla Glass 5, which is commendable in a budget phone, and should help protect it from accidental damage. That’s a very good thing, since the materials used here can make the Note 8T rather slippery in the hand.
The quad-lens camera protrudes from the phone’s body, located on the back just above a fingerprint sensor that is – in more expensive models – nowadays often built right into the screen.
While none of Xiaomi’s line-up is fully waterproof, in the Redmi Note 8T it has applied a splash-resistant coating. Another intriguing new feature in this model is the self-cleaning speaker and AUX input, able to expel dust and debris through vibration.
You’ll find the SIM tray, power and volume buttons in their usual places, while on top is an infra-red sensor that is increasingly found only in Xiaomi phones, able to control a compatible TV in place of your standard remote.
Adorning the front of Redmi Note 8T is a 6.3in AMOLED panel with a Full-HD+ resoltution. A small notch at the top of the screen is used to place the selfie camera, which leaves the overall screen-to-body ratio at 88.3%.
The bezels are larger than we would ordinarily expect to see on a Xiaomi phone, with the bottom large enough to include the Redmi logo, which is also found on the rear. The phone is tall with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio, so despite this it fits comfortably in the hand.
Surprisingly for AMOLED we found rather cold and pasty colours presented by the display, but the colour temperature is easily tweaked in the settings. Thankfully this is a bright screen (claimed 500 nits), because it’s less easy to do something about that.
We found the rear fingerprint sensor worked quite satisfactorily, waking and unlocking the phone with a single touch of the index finger. Though the sensor itself is rather small, it is place exactly where you expect to find it, and therefore quickly becomes second nature to use. The only real gripe we have with this implementation is that it is more difficult to unlock when sitting on a desk, rather than in your hand.Performance
The octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 processor inside the Redmi Note 8T is a capable chip, but not a fast one. It does, however, provide an improvement over the Redmi Note 7’s Snapdragon 660.
We ran our usual benchmarks (which you can see in the chart below) and found stronger core performance here than in better-known models such as the Moto G8 Plus which has a similar processor, though it is a little slower than some recent phones using the Snapdragon 712, such as the Realme 5 Pro.
The generous 4,000mAh battery endured 8 hours 27 minutes in Geekbench’s battery test, which should mean it is good for a full day’s use. Xiaomi claims two days of life from the Note 8T, but your mileage really depends on your usage. The 18W wired charger is a welcome addition to this ’T’ model.Photography
Redmi Note 8T launched in Spain alongside Mi Note 10, a phone notable for being the world’s first 108Mp camera phone that you can actually buy. Naturally, then, its 48Mp quad-lens camera didn’t get the recognition it deserved: this is a great spec for a £170 phone.
There are five cameras in total here, including a 13Mp AI camera at the front, and a 48Mp lens with f/1.75 aperture at the back. The latter is accompanied by an 8Mp wide-angle lens with f/2.2 aperture, a 2Mp Macro lens and a depth sensor, both with f/2.4 aperture, and together they are capable of some great results.
We saw very good results given good lighting outdoors, but were less enthused by performance in low-light scenarios, with colours somewhat dulled and lacking the vividness we see in real life.
The 8Mp wide-angle lens makes it easy to fit everything – or everyone – into a scene, but when you zoom right in you will notice some noise effects. There are also notable colour differences when using this sensor or the primary 48Mp lens. Night mode is available only to the latter.
The Macro mode is very good, enabling blur-free shots to be taken at just 1cm distance.Software
It’s worth pointing out that Redmi Note 8T is not yet running MIUI 11, which is the latest version of Xiaomi’s custom Android OS. Here running MIUI 10, we didn’t find multi-tasking or switching between screens quite as agile as we’d like. This may be due to the abundance of ‘extras’ (more than 30) Xiaomi has included here.
We’d like to see improved notification management, especially in Game Mode, and we miss the gesture-based navigation of some of Xiaomi’s more premium phones.Conclusion
Though it’s not entirely flawless, at £169.99 the Redmi Note 8T represents exceptional value. A quad-lens camera is unheard of at the price point, and you will be surprised at the level of detail that can be captured. Overall performance is sufficient for daily tasks, and the 4,000mAh battery adds appeal.Related stories for further reading Specs Xiaomi Redmi Note 8T: Specs
6.3in Full-HD+ (2340×1080) 19.5:9 AMOLED display, Gorilla Glass 5, 500 nits, 83.8% screen-to-body ratio
2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 octa-core processor
64GB storage (expandable via microSD to 256GB)
Adreno 610 GPU
dual-SIM dual-standby (hybrid slot)
quad-lens camera: 48Mp f/1.75 + 8Mp f/2.2 wide-angle + 2Mp f/2.4 Macro + 2Mp f/2.4 depth
13Mp f/2.0 selfie camera
18W wired charging
rear fingerprint sensor
Today, we’ll be checking out the latest SoundPEATS TruePods which now retail for around . Will they be able to deliver a good value for the money? Let’s find out in the full review!SoundPEATS TruePods True Wireless Earbuds Review: Top Quality Specs & Features
Latest Bluetooth 5.0
Advanced touch control
Dual mic in each earbud
20 hours extended enjoyment
Biological diaphragm enhanced soundPackaging
The SoundPEATS TruePods come in a very simple black packaging. Once we lift up the top we quickly have a look at the earbuds case, inside which we find the earbuds themselves. Aside from the two primary tech pieces we also find an USB charging cable and a spare pair of eartips.Design
The design of the two earbuds is certainly not super innovative or revolutionary. They are indeed inspired by Apple’s AirPods but they definitely aren’t a clone. The design is much more squarish and most noticeably they’re black; no white option here. There are touch controls to turn them on and put them in the various modes. Finally, there is an LED on each earbud which can blink white or red depending on the current mode (pairing, paired, charging).Sound Quality Gizchina News of the week
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The earbuds feature a clean and crystal clear sound, they’re also relatively loud when volume is set to the maximum. Meanwhile basses are still very present and strong, probably also due to the good sound isolation provided by the eartips. Overall a very enjoyable music listening experience. Same can be said about other type of audios like talks, Youtube videos and whatnot. We’ve never any issues with the sound quality provided by the TruePods.
Moving onto the microphone side, the audio appears to be pretty clear. The dual mic system definitely helps reducing outside noise, thus it’s possible to actually make a call in most environments.User experience
The earbuds by SoundPEATS bring a top user experience. With that we mean you never noticed they’re more affordable than big brands’ counterparts.
Once you pair them with your smartphone, they will always pair automatically when you take out the main (right) earbud. You then take out the left earbud which pairs with the right one and you’re ready to go. It’s all pretty simple and straight forward.
Touch controls make it easy to use them as well. You can double tap the right earbud to pause/play music, double tap the left one to activate Google’s Assistant (or Siri on iOS). Meanwhile if you hold the button you can switch previous or next song. There are also other functionalities you can learn directly on the user manual.Battery
It’s really hard to quantify how good battery life is on these earbuds as every time you stop using them, you put them in the charging case which of course brings them back to 100%. Either way, we believe the 20 hours battery life claim by the manufacturer is actually accurate. That means you would get 4 hours with the earbuds on one charge, while the charging case provides an additional 16 hours of autonomy.
Finally, SoundPEATS smartly decided to provide the charging case with an USB Type-C port. So, you’ll never struggle looking for the right side to charge it back up, a real improvement in “quality of life” over microUSB equipped options.Conclusion
The SoundPEATS TruePods are a very valid option in their price range. We could even go as far as saying they bring much more quality than you’d expect for what you pay. So yes, we definitely suggest you check them out if you’re actually looking for a pair of high quality TWS earbuds.
You can learn more or purchase them over on Amazon US at this link.
BUY SoundPEATS TruePods True Wireless Earbuds
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