Allview X1 Soul (Gionee Elife E6) Review: Surprisingly Elegant and Appealing Sub $500 Handset (Video)
We’ve had our share of reviews for Allview handsets and in case you don’t know it, this is an East European brand of phones, from Romania. The device we analyze today is the Allview X1 Soul handset, a rebranded Gionee Elife E6, an elegant flagship with a 5 inch Full HD screen on board. The device si priced at $481 and more details can be found below.
This model adopts a solid unibody design, with a sealed case, no microSD card slot and non removable battery. The internal chassis is made of magnesium and this model measures 7.9 mm in thickness, making it pretty slim. It weighs 129.4 grams and uses a special full lamination tech for a reduced thickness. The build and grip are very good and I’m totally impressed by this design.
The case is made of polycarbonate and the specs of the handset include a 5 inch Full HD screen, a quad core MediaTek MT6589 1.5 GHz processor and 2 GB of RAM. There’s also 32 GB of storage, WiFi dual band, HSDPA 21 Mbps connectivity and a Power VR SGX544 GPU. Allview X1 Soul uses a microSIM card slot, FM radio, Bluetooth 4.0 and a Yamaha Audio amplifier.
It has a 13 MP back camera, a surprising 5 MP shooter and a Li-Polymer 2000 mAh battery, that offered us around 5 hours of video playback, that’s decent for such a battery capacity and screen size. You should be able to get one normal day of use out of it in the long run. On the audio side, we’ve got a nice set of headphones bundled with the handset and the speaker available here offers loud volume, good bass and very warm voice, especially when watching movies.
The Yamaha amplifier does its job just fine and we’ve also got an evolved equalizer and the aid of DTS enhancing, so the audio is great on the smartphone. Moving on to the screen, the display uses JDI (Japan Display Inc) technology and it’s a 5 inch Full HD screen with 440 ppi density, one glass solution technology and Gorilla Glass 3 protection.
The screen offers wide view angles, vivid and realistic colors and the brightness is 280 lux units, judging by our tests. The pixels are of the RGP Stripe kind and I have to say that the outdoor use of the screen isn’t that good. As far as the camera goes, we’ve got a 13 megapixel shooter with Omnivision OV12830 sensor, BSI 2 technology and LED flash.
The UI offers you the ability to do normal capture, panoramas and MAV, which is a moving photo of sorts. There’s also an option called Eraser, that removes moving subjects that step inside the frame of your shot. Then there’s Best Pic and EV Bracket, with the latter taking some pictures with a variety of exposures. There’s also a Smile Shot option, the ability to capture pics by showing the victory sign in front of the camera and there’s a ton of options to tweak: white balance, effects, scene modes, saturation, contrast, brightness, exposure and ISO.
The HDR works very well, the flash is excellent indoors and the level of detail and color of the pics is just fine. Closeups like the one of the grapes I showed in the video are mint and panorama also looks hot. The video capture shows us that there’s no stabilization here and frankly I would prefer if the encoding wasn’t done in 3GP, but that’s life…
I appreciate the huge number of camera features, but I wanted maybe a bit more video quality here. On the OS side we’ve got Android 4.2.1, with a reasonably fast web browser and as far as performance go, we did a bunch of benchmarks to test it. We also checked out the device’s temperature, that reached 40.6 degrees Celsius after a gaming session, which is kind of hot for the average user’s hands.
On the benchmark side of things we scored 4717 points in Quadrant, 15.000 points in AnTuTu, 1526 in Vellamo, 33.9 FPS in NenaMark 2.0 and 3679 points in 3DMark. You’ll see some comparisons of the scores with other devices in the video review. Allview also implemented smart gestures here and while on paper they should work like on the Galaxy S4, in real life they don’t… sadly.
We’ve also got a tweaked interface here, with a bunch of effects and themes that are customized for this handset model. Sadly, the UI feels a bit laggy at times for no reason and I blame the launcher here. The preinstalled app list includes Bitdefender, Office Suite and Notes, to name a few. And now here’s the list of Pros and Cons related to this device.
Here are the Pros:
- premium design
- magnesium chassis
- good speaker
- very nice earbuds
- decent battery
- good picture taking and video capture
- a lot of camera options
- good display
And the Cons:
- outdoor behaviour of screen
- some camera bugs
- slight UI lag
- gestures don’t work 100%
- game compatibility (GT Racing 2 and Rayman Fiesta Run don’t work)
Allview X1 Soul gets from us a 9.5 out of 10 for design, a 9 for hardware and a 9 for OS and UI, with a final grade of 9.16 out of 10. This is a good buy for around $480, or even less now that the holidays are upon us.