The ZenFone 3 Zoom just launched here in the Philippines and we happen to review the device before its launch. Here’s what you need to know about it.
ZenFone 3 Zoom Unboxing
ZenFone 3 Zoom Review
Design and Build Quality
The new Zoom looks sexy. It has a premium metal design with its aluminum allow body. It feels lighter than most phones its size but is very solid. It is thinner than its predecessor which good.
The full HD AMOLED display certainly looks great and is protected by a Gorilla Glass 5. They also gave it a smooth contoured edge, giving it the illusion that the phone is curved.
The highlight of the device is its rear Dual Camera lenses. They are located at the top left of the back of the phone, making the transition from portrait to landscape orientation easy during a photography session. The two 12MP cameras are not made the same and can’t work side by side with each other. One is a SuperPixel main camera with a Sony IMX362 sensor and an f/1.7 aperture, while the other is a Zoom camera with a Samsing 3M3 sensor and an f/2.6 aperture.
The Zoom camera has a very decent zoom; 2.3x optical and up to 12x digital. It is great for macro photography and shooting landscapes. The digital zoom, however, gets real grainy on low light. But it performs great on good lighting conditions.
The SuperPixel camera gets good overall pictures. It also takes great 4k video with a 3-axis video EIS. It takes great depth of field/bokeh photos, HDR, and also performs great on low light situations. The phone is also equipped with a Color Correction Sensor beside its flash. Sample photos below, taken during the Davao Food Appreciation Tour (DFAT).
I have a bit of an issue with its Depth of Field capability though. It sometimes shoot great but most often than not, the bokeh of the photo looks awkward around the edges of the subject. Same goes for the iPhone 7 Plus’ Portrait mode. In my opinion, the Huawei P9, P10, and Mate 9 has them beat in this area.
The front camera also performs well, a 13MP Sony IMX214 sensor with f/2.0 aperture. It is more than enough to take great selfies with. You can also improve your selfies with its beautification mode. And it also has a selfie panorama mode for those awesome group photos.
Performance and Gaming
I haven’t experienced any lag during my time with the device. The ZenUI is fast as usual, and gaming on it is so smooth. However, the device tends to heat up during a long period of camera use, but not to the point that it becomes uncomfortable. Benchmark results are as follows:
- Antutu: 62020
- PC Mark (Work 2.0): 4701
- 3D Mark (Sling Shot): 846
- Geekbench: 848
- Vellamo (Metal): 1460
Perhaps my most favorite feature of the ZenFone 3 Zoom is its battery life. It is equipped with a 5000 mAh battery, bigger than the ZenFone 3 Max’s 4100 mAh battery. As a power user, most smartphone batteries doesn’t last me a full day. But the ZenFone 3 Zoom lasted long enough even with Cellular data, Bluetooth, and Location enabled. Charging it is also a breeze, taking about 2.5 hours. It is also capable of charging other devices via OTG, much like the ZenFone 3 Max.
The device also have some other features, one is a fingerprint sensor on the back. It is located at the center which is easier to reach with your index finger. The sensor is pretty fast but a bit too sensitive. The phone sometimes wakes up with just a very quick graze from my finger, which can be annoying at times.
It also has an Outdoor Mode for listening to music outdoors. You just simply turn up the volume and turn on Outdoor Mode when you see it on the screen. This can be draining to your battery though.
ZenFone 3 Zoom Specifications
- Dimensions – 154.3 x 77 x 7.99 mm (6.07 x 3.03 x 0.31 inches)
- Weight – 170 g
- Display – 5.5” FHD, 1920×1080 AMOLED
- CPU – Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 Octa-core 14nm processor, 2.0 GHz
- GPU – Adreno 506
- Memory – 4GB
- Storage – 64GB (supports up to 1TB external)
- Rear Cam – 12MP f/1.7 SONY IMX362 sensor + 12MP Zoom Lens (12x total zoom)
- Front Cam – 13MP SONY IMX214 sensor, f/2.0
- Battery – 5000 mAh
- OS – Android 6.0 with ASUS ZenUI 3.0