Asus Zenfone Max M2, Pro M2 hands-on: First impression

Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
Asus Zenfone Max M2 and the Max Pro M2 have potential to disrupt the respective budget and mid-range segment in the Indian smartphone market.KVN Rohit/IBTimes India

Taiwanese consumer electronics major, Asus unveiled the Zenfone Max M2 series, the successor of the company’s popular Zenfone Max M1 and Pro M1 in India on December 11.

Both the devices come with decent upgrades over the predecessor in terms of design and also the internal hardware, while the price has been kept almost same, making them value-for-money phones in the highly competitive mid-range and budget segments in the country.

Prior to the launch, Asus offered both the Zenfone Max M2 and the Pro M2 units to International Business Times India Edition for review. I have spent quite some time with both the devices and here’s my take on them.

Design, build quality and display:

The top-end Max M2 Pro sports a premium shell on the back with a good mix of metal and glass. It wonderfully encapsulates the frame and blends into gorgeous 2.5D display on the front. It is one of the best visually appealing phone in the mid-range segment.

Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 and the Max M2 come with good build quality.KVN Rohit/IBTimes India

On the front, it sports 6.26-inch full HD+ screen with Gorilla Glass 6 series, which no other rival branded phone can boast in its class. Even the top-end range too, there are hardly two or three phones with the latest Corning-made shield.

On the other hand, the Max M2 comes with same 6.26-inch screen size but with HD+ resolution. It is also sleek and weighs less compared to M2 Pro, but when held in hand, you can feel the sturdiness.

Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 and the Max M2 are slated to go on sale exclusively on Flipkart from 18 December and 20 December, respectively.KVN Rohit/IBTimes India

Processor, RAM and storage:

Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 houses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 octa-core backed by 3GB/4GB/6GB RAM and 32GB/64GB storage (expandable up to 2TB via micro SD).

The Zenfone Max M2 comes with Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 octa-core, 3GB/4GB RAM and 32GB/64GB storage (expandable up to 2TB via micro SD).

Having spent a brief time with both the devices, I didn’t notice any discernible issue in terms of lag-ness during launching an app or switching between multiple apps or while using the camera for that matter. Both worked fine. I need more time to fully run the phones through their paces.

Camera:

Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 sports a feature-rich dual-camera module, one primary 12MP with Sony IMX486 sensor, F1.8 aperture, 6p lens, 1.25µm lens and a dedicated 5MP depth sensor. It also boasts Electronic Image Stabilisation and 4K Video recording and LED flash.

I am particularly impressed with the Zenfone Max Pro M2’s primary camera and plan to test in various other light environments [until then check our sample shots below].

1/2

  • Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
    Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 primary camera sampleKVN Rohit/IBTimes India
  • Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
    Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 primary camera sampleKVN Rohit/IBTimes India

On the front, it features a 13MP with F2.0 aperture, 1.12µm sensor and a LED flash, which will help get good quality images even in dark light condition.

On the other hand, Max M2 too flaunts dual-camera on the back, but they are watered down to cut costs. Nevertheless, it takes decent pictures under natural light conditions. It comes with a 13MP (with F1.8 aperture) and a 2MP depth sensor with LED flash and 4K Video recording capability. It also features 8MP front-facing snapper with F2.0 aperture and a LED flash.

1/2

  • Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
    Asus Zenfone Max M2 primary camera sampleKVN Rohit/IBTimes India
  • Asus, Zenfone Max Pro M2, Zenfone Max M2, first impression, hands-on
    Asus Zenfone Max M2 primary camera sampleKVN Rohit/IBTimes India

Battery:

Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 houses a massive 5,000mAh battery and having used the predecessor, I believe, the new model will also offer at least one and half days of battery.

On the other hand, the generic Max M2 comes with a 4,000mAh cell, which is more than sufficient to offer a whole day’s battery life under mixed usage.

Initial impression:

Going by the price and the specifications, Asus has delivered a masterstroke with the two new phones—Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 & Max M2—and are well poised to disrupt the market in their respective mid-range and budget categories in India. Be sure to come back next week for the full review.

The company has confirmed that the Zenfone Max Pro M2 and the Max M2 will go on sale exclusively on Flipkart on December 18 and December 20, respectively.

Key specifications of Asus Zenfone Max M2 and Pro M2:

Models Zenfone Max M2 Pro Zenfone Max M2
Display 6.26-inch full HD+ (2280x1080p) screen with 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass 6

  • 94% NTSC Colour Gamut
  • 1500:1 contrast ratio
  • 19.9 aspect ratio
  • 450 nits brightness
6.26-inch HD+ (1520x720p) screen with 2.5D Glass

  • 19.9 aspect ratio
  • 430 nits brightness
OS Android 8.1 Oreo Android 8.1 Oreo
Processor 1.95GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 octa-core with AIE + Adreno 512 GPU 1.8GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 632 octa-core + Adreno 506 GPU
RAM + Storage
  • 3GB + 32GB
  • 4GB + 64GB
  • 6GB + 64GB

Note:

  • RAM—LPDDR4X
  • Storage: Expandable up to 2TB
  • 3GB + 32GB
  • 4GB + 64GB

Note:

  • RAM—LPDDR3X
  • Storage: Expandable up to 2TB
Camera
  • Main: 12MP (with IMX486, F1.8 aperture, 6p lens, 1.25µm) + 5MP depth sensor, Electronic Image Stabilisation, 4K Video recording, LED flash
  • Front: 13MP with F2.0 aperture, 1.12µm sensor, LED flash
  • Main: 13MP (with F1.8 aperture, 6p lens, 1.12µm) + 2MP depth sensor, 4K Video recording, LED flash
  • Front: 8MP with F2.0 aperture, 1.12µm sensor, LED flash
Battery 5,000mAh 4000mAh
Network 4G-LTE 4G-LTE
Add-ons Face unlock, fingerprint sensor, Premium 3D-curved glossy design, triple slots (nano SIM 1+ nano SIM 2+ microSD card) Bluetooth v5.0, Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), microUSB port, 5-magnet speaker, NXP SmartAMP, 2x microphones, GPS/GLONASS/BDS/Galileo/ QZSS, clear soft case with the retail box Face unlock, fingerprint sensor, Premium 3D-curved glossy design, triple slots (nano SIM 1+ nano SIM 2+ microSD card) Bluetooth v4.2, Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), microUSB port, 5-magnet speaker, NXP SmartAMP, 2x microphones, GPS/GLONASS/BDS/Galileo/ QZSS, clear soft case with the retail box
Dimensions 157.9 x 75.5 x 8.5 mm 158.41 x 76.28 x 7.7 mm
Weight 175g 160g
Colours Blue/Titanium Blue/Black
Price
  • 3GB RAM+32GB storage: Rs 12,999
  • 4GB RAM+64GB storage: Rs 14,999
  • 6GB RAM+64GB storage: Rs 16,999
  • 3GB RAM+32GB storage: Rs 9,999
  • 4GB RAM+64GB storage: Rs 11,999

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