Starmobile Up Max Review
Today we are going to review the Starmobile Up Max a smaller brother of the recent Starmobile Knight Vision which are both DTV capable (Digital TV).
Starting off with the packaging, the Starmobile Up Max includes 2 screen protector, 1 Jelly Case, Warranty Card, Earphones, Quick Guide, Cable Antenna, Travel Charger, Micro USB cable and the unit itself.
Like their other devices, Starmobile still implemented the new design in this packaging having a Collectible box type with a red and white color accent.
Let’s first check the specs basically, it’s a 1.3GHz Mediatek Processor with 1GB of RAM and 16GB of Internal Storage. Using a 13-megapixel BSI Rear Camera plus a 5-megapixel Front Selfie Camera. The rear camera also comes with a Dual LED Flash. the pinhole mic is also placed at the bottom of the Dual LED flash.
While at the center part of the back cover locates the Starmobile Logo, moving at the bottom we can see the Speaker holes on the left while the Micro USB port at the right side.
The Up Max is a 5-inch IPS display with an HD resolution of 720 x 1280, we can also see the 5-megapixel front camera at the right most part, earpiece in the center and the sensors at the left side.
Bezels of the screen are quite thin but with slightly noticeable black border. The illuminated capacitive buttons at the button are oriented as Menu, Home, and Back button.
The left side has the Volume Rocker while at the right is the power button, both buttons are very clicky since it has a Gold color metal side frame surrounding.
The display has a Bright vivid colors and with a decent display, viewing it in different angles is acceptable with no huge shifting of colors.
Underneath we can see the combination of Standard and Micro SIM slots plus the Micro SD which is capable up to 32GB (Didn’t test out a 64GB).
Proceed to the next page
As usual we run our benchmarking tools to check its full maximum potential, remember benchmarking is putting the phone to its full potential performance and real world usage will still vary. We also included the CPU-Z and sensor test to check some of the other details.
What’s interesting with the Starmobile Up Max is using the Sensor Box app we noticed that the sensors are only software activated for the Gyroscope and Magnetic sensor you will see that the hardware is not present but only activated.
Up Max is also a 5-multi touch screen capable device. It’s also an OTG Capable that can read small Storage devices not larger than 1TB.
Since this device doesn’t have any Magnetic sensor it’s struggling to lock the GPS but Wi-Fi coverage is acceptable in terms of range.
The UI is Vanilla stock Android Lollipop with some pre-built apps from Starmobile and some 3rd party vendors from time-to-time we still notice some ads showing in our notification.
UI is smooth and responsive but if you want to give an additional smoothness to the user experience we recommend downloading and using the Google Launcher to have a better Launcher UI.
but very interesting in the Stock Launcher settings there’s a to hide apps from the app drawer.
they also included some nifty features like the Super Power, No! it will not give your device a super power like a superhero, but it can greatly boost the battery life of the device since once this feature is activated, the device will have minimal apps running in the background and simplified UI version and changes the color of the overall skin to black and white to give longer battery life.
It’s easy to use and straightforward if you want to exit this feature just simply click the menu button and you will see the exit button and it will be back to the regular UI.
Another feature is the Smart Wake where users can set if they want to have a double tap/click to activate and sleep the phone when tapping it in the home screen, this feature will not work in other parts of the UI. users can also set what apps to open when doing a gesture based on the app settings.
Here’s a minor feature that I really like with the Up max, actually there is a search icon in the settings menu and with that users can search which menu they want to access instantly pretty nifty if you don’t want to scrub thru the whole menu one-by-one.
Proceed to the next page
Thanks to its large battery capacity of 5000mAh it can also act as a power bank to charge other devices.
Charging usually takes more than 2hrs and activating the boost charge app can slightly help in increasing the speed of charging time.
Both casual and highly intensive graphical games are playable on their default settings like any other MediaTek MT6582 SoC, this can handle fairly above average game but once games are set to the highest settings noticeable drop of frames can be seen. But newer games like NBA 2k16 and Need For Speed NO LIMITS won’t play it only loads up to the start screen and it automatically closes after that.
It might be a compatibility issues with the GPU since the Mali-400MP2 GPU is an older GPU used by 2 years old processor like the MT6582. but again gaming is above average if you’re not into just any casual games.
But great news even having a just a 16GB of Internal storage with a 12GB of usable storage games and apps can be transferred to the SD Card via the app settings.
One of the Highlight feature of the Starmobile Up Max is the Digital TV capability (DTV) out of the box it can stream ISDB Digital signal. Based on usage almost all networks that support this technology can be scan thru the app.
The coverage is clear but depends on location, like on end if I place the device inside my room it usually encounters NO SIGNAL issues from time-to-time but once I placed it beside my window it fixes the issue.
but the story is different on a fully covered area like in Makati, I usually bring this device on-the-go and even using it inside a building I never encountered NO SIGNAL issues but only some network coverage like in some areas there’s only ABS-CBN and while in other places only GMA-7 and the likes.
Still a great way to watch my favorite TV shows anywhere I wanted. I also like record feature of the app which at the same time I can record while watching, since not all the time my eyes are on the screen. If I wanted to watch it later I can easily do that. but the only downside is when you bring it to an editing application usually it doesn’t sync with the audio but playing it on its native video player works well.
Take note that it needs the cable antenna that is included in the package to be plugged in to work. I also like the way they designed it as an earphone jack. Since when I used the Starmobile Knight Vision it has this antenna feature which for me I find it awkward using on public places. Not like the Up Max it just looks like a cable for the earphone jack.
there’s nothing too fancy in terms of the Camera modules even having a 13-megapixel rear camera with BSI sensor and a 5-megapixel front. Output is below average in both good lighted and low light environment.
Also, the video capture is zoomed in when recording but it can record a 1080p video with 30fps but only outputs a .3gp filetype.
The UI of the camera is also the same with the other MediaTek vanilla skin with all the fancy features like EIS, and Zero Shutter Delay.
Sound Quality is fair even having the speaker at the bottom still makes the audio muffles when playing games. Highest volume though is pretty much adequate, we still can’t monitor the output of the actual audio loudness as of the moment but once we get our new tools will give a more in-depth info on our audio segment.
The Starmobile Up Max cost Php7,490 a bit pricey for some but what you pay for is what you get if you’re looking for a solid premium build that will surely last for years and a long-lasting battery life smartphone and take note it’s a Digital TV Smartphone out of the box. 🙂
Again having a 5000mAh battery has a great benefit with this device in our benchmark for both PC Mark Test and GeekBench 3 Battery test it did surpass all of the other devices we reviewed in the past and makes it on top of our chart as of writing this post.
Overall the Starmobile is a highly recommendable device for any users who literally don’t want to charge every day, also for people who usually makes phone calls and are always on the go. It may not have the best hardware features but truly surpass all its competitors in terms of battery life.