LeEco Le 2 review – best mid-ranger?

LeEco formerly known as LeTv announced their latest smartphones – Le 2 and Le Max2 at a Grand launch event in Delhi. Le 2 is the successor to Le 1s which was the best selling mobile from LeEco in India. The device is available from Flipkart and LeMall on flash sales with an attractive price of INR 11,999. Let us see if Le 2 is a worthy successor to Le 1s and if it is the best phone at this price range.

Le 2

Le 2 specifications at a glance:

Le 2

Box Contents:

  • Le 2 smartphone
  • Mobile case
  • Sim tray ejector
  • Wall charger
  • USB to Type-C charger
  • 3.5mm to Type-C adapter for conventional earphones
  • User manual and warranty

Design and Display:

Le 2 follows in the footsteps of Le 1s with a full metal body and tapered edges which provide a good grip while handling the device. The phone measures 15.11 × 7.42 × 0.75 cm, weighs in around 153g and is available in three color variants – Gold, Silver and Grey. We got our hands on the Gold variant which actually looks slightly rose gold than fully gold colored. On the front we have a 8MP wide angle lens camera for selfies along with sensors and a notification LED , a 5.5″ FHD (1920 x 1080p) IPS screen with in-cell technology and the three capacitive buttons for home, back and options. The right side of the phone has volume rocker and lock/unlock/power button whereas on the left side we have a dual sim slot. Backside of the phone houses a 16MP PDAF camera with dual tone LED flash and a noise cancelling microphone. There is also the fingerprint sensor which is pretty accurate and fast similar to the first generation phone. Then there is the usual LeTv logo and couple of certification info at the bottom. On the top of the phone we only have a IR blaster that can be used to control certain home appliances and at the bottom we have a stereo speaker and type-C charging port that is used for charging, data transfer and even for connecting the headphones/earphones.

“The Le 2 phone feels very premium and comfortable to handle and is also one of the best looking phones in this segment”

The 5.5″ display of Le 2 has a full hd resolution of 1920 x 1080p with a pixel density of 401 making the images and text look sharp and crisp. The color reproduction is good and not oversaturated, viewing angles are good and the outdoor visibility is also great. The only thing that could have been better is the black borders around the screen which seem to be a bit thick compared to Le 1s and we would have liked if it was thinner.

“There have been reports about display quality issues from various users and reviewers online but we sincerely do not have any concerns about the screen. We tried pressing the screen hard enough to see if there is any noise and it was very minimal and moreover none of the casual users would be using the screen that way. Even during cut/copy/paste we did not notice anything unusual with the screen.”

Performance and Software:

Le 2 is one of the first devices to be powered by the latest mid-range offering from Qualcomm – the Snapdragon 652 chipset which is an Octa-core processor (4x Cortex A72, 4x Cortex A53) clocked at 1.8GHz. This processor handles most of the intensive tasks with ease and can even play some high graphic games thanks to Adreno 510 GPU. We have 3GB of RAM to take care of multi-tasking and lag free experience and internal memory of 32GB which is not expandable. As with Le 1s, we do not see any lag or stutter in the phone’s performance. We played a couple of graphic intensive games and did not see any lag in the gameplay too. There was no considerable heating observed while playing games or watching videos as it was the case with some Le 1s units. Even though Snapdragon 652 is supposed to be a mid-range chipset, the performance is close to last year’s flagship chipsets like SD808 and SD810.

“The eUI skin coupled with Snapdragon 652 chipset and 3GB RAM ensures a buttery smooth experience for the user on Le 2 which is comparable with stock Android”

Le 2 runs on the latest Android Marshmallow with LeEco’s own eUI OS on the top. As with other Chinese ROMs, eUI has no app drawer and is very smooth with plenty of customizations. The control center on the eUI is one of the highlights and is similar to the one on iOS where you have lot of toggles and also can kill apps or switch apps. This is one of the ROMs where the memory management is very efficient and keeps the user experience lag free similar to stock Android. There are few pre-installed apps like LeView, LeVidi and LeLive which can be used for consuming the multimedia content from LeEco’s Supertainment subscription that is available as a free (worth INR 4,900) add-on for the first year.

Camera:

Le 2 has a 16MP rear camera with F/2.0 Aperture and Phase detection auto focus (PDAF) which does a decent job for this price. The camera captures a lot of detail when there is enough light and in outdoor conditions but the low-light photography could have been better as we see lot of noise when there is not enough light. The camera is capable of shooting at 4K/1080p @ 30fps videos but there is no OIS or EIS and so are bit shaky. The front camera is good for taking selfies with some beauty modes and video calls but can only shoot up to 720p. Overall the camera quality is good when compared to other devices like RN3 at this price range but some more tuning would have definitely made it great.

Audio quality and Battery:

Le 2 has dual sim connectivity with dual standby and supports 4G and VoLTE for HD voice calls. The call quality was clear on both the sides without any distortions. The speaker has good output and is loud enough for a smartphone. As you would have noticed in the design section, there is no mention of the 3.5mm audio jack and the reason is it actually doesn’t exist. LeEco has skipped the 3.5mm jack by introducing CDLA (Continual Digital Lossless audio) technology which utilizes the Type-C port for audio as well. The drop in the audio quality when utilizing CDLA is just over 1% compared to around 40% when using the 3.5mm analog audio jack. We were able to feel the difference in audio quality and CDLA is indeed very good. The caveat however is that there are only couple of earphones/headphones available with the type-C interface but fret not as LeEco is providing a free 3.5mm jack to Type-C converter.

Le 2

Le 2 comes with a 3000 mAh battery that keeps the mobile running for a full day or slightly over a day depending on casual usage. The battery supports Quick Charge 2.0 and can go up to 50% with just 30 minutes of charging and with SD652 we have Qualcomm’s one of the most power efficient processor ensuring good battery life.

Conclusion:

Le 2 is a worthy successor to the previous model with a great processor that delivers performance better than other devices at this segment and upgraded camera that produces decent pictures. However, if you already own a Le 1s, then there is absolutely no need to upgrade to Le 2 and can rather go for the next model. Users who love music and primarily use their device for music will love the CDLA technology of Le 2 which is also being introduced in the latest Phones from other known brands.

Pros:

  • Great processor
  • Upgraded camera
  • CDLA technology for lossless audio

Cons:

  • No 3.5mm jack to use conventional earphones
  • Screen quality

Our Rating: 3.5 out of 5

 

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