Xiaomi Mi Max 2

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Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Hands-On Review – Bigger Gets Better

Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Hands-On Review – Bigger Gets Better

I’m a fan of the Mi Max, ever since I reviewed it last year. I thought in the beginning that it was just way to big, silly size even. No way, I would keep it. Move forward over a year and here I am, still, after so many more powerful phones have passed through my hands I still stuck with my Mi Max.

Why? Two main reasons for me, Immersive large screen, great for media consumption and typing with on-screen keyboards. The second reason, one of the most important factors for me, battery life. The Mi Max was one of the kings of battery life in 2016, losing out to the Snapdragon 625 devices. Mobiles like the Redmi Note 4X I reviewed while in New Zealand had astounding battery life, almost 15 hours of continuous screen on time. The same mobile my wife now uses and only charges once every 4-5 days. And it’s this same efficient chipset that is now in the Xiaomi Mi Max 2.

Xiaomi Mi Max 2 Vs Mi Max, spot the difference?

But I was a little disappointed in the announcement of that chip in the Mi Max 2, chipset wise I expected the Snapdragon 630, the latest or even the more powerful Snapdragon 660, the 650’s successor. The rest of the changes ticked all the boxes. Unibody, stronger build, better camera, dual loudspeakers, quick charge 3, larger battery, smaller inner screen bezel and type-c port. But the thought of the SD625 SoC, 1080p screen with a large 5300mAh battery meant battery life should be even better right? Well so far it looks the case, but that will come in my final review. So far for cons of the Mi Max 2, there are two. The price,  $265 is the best price I could find with coupon MaxMHG here http://www.gearbest.com/cell-phones/pp_638129.html So a lot more expensive than the first gen Mi Max, which is now around $189 to $200 for the 32GB version.

Google Play for the stock Chinese ROM can be installed here: https://techtablets.com/2017/05/get-google-play-xiaomi-mi-6/

Xiaomi Mi Max 2 unboxing and first look mini review. (Including Mi Max Vs Mi Max 2 camera review)

Timecodes:

02:37 – Just get the box open!
06:18 – First boot
07:31 – ROM & Info
08:46 – Antutu Vs Mi Max
09:56 – Size comparison
11:43 – Speaker test
13:03 – Camera review Vs Mi Max
17:31 – First Impressions

Findings:

  • The build quality is a big step up over the Mi Max, unibody housing, rounded edges just feel better in hand.
  • The screen seems a little less reflective.
  • The black inner bezel is half the size of the Max’s but it looks larger due to more white left and right bezel.
  • The front loudspeaker is just like the Mi 6, supports the main loudspeaker and gives more mids and highs.
  • The ROM so far stable based on Android 7.1.1
  • The Mi Max 2 feels faster and smoother than the Mi max dispute the lower benchmark scores. (Benchmarks aren’t everything!)
  • The front camera is still average, the rear camera is a lot better than the Max’s but still not a flagship camera missing OIS for better low light shots.

Thoughts after 12 hours with the Xiaomi Mi Max 2:

More soon, but so far I like it a lot. I feel in many ways it’s worth it over the Max, but only if it was a little cheaper. It’s just come out so give it a few months I think it will sell for $250. This phone is now my daily mobile, so I’ll be using it all the time. Updates on the battery life, call quality, GPS and gaming to follow.

Video tech reviewer and tech blogger. I have a huge interest in the latest tech, tablets, laptops, mobiles, drones, and even e-scooters. Active in the tech community since 2008 days of the Omnia i900 Windows phone. Samsungi8910omnia.com, Samsunggalaxysforums.com founder from way back.

20 Comments

  1. Xiaomi mi max is good smartphone but i like Gretel GT6000 because Gretel GT6000 is one of the best smartphone that is available with in the budget. the best part is design and camera quality, It is a slim smartphone with perfect design that catches every one eyes towards it.

  2. I use Gretel GT6000 and this phone solve my 2 main problem, Good dual Camera and Big Battery 6000mAh. GT6000 come with premium looking and very good price.

  3. Like the sound of this phone. My contract on my ever increasingly annoying 950xl will be over by January and with it my last contract phone deal. Hopefully by that time it will come down to a price which means I’ll be able to use a interest free credit card to buy it and put in sim only deal sim card in it. By doing so I should be able to save myself at least £11/$14+ a month.
    All good.

    • Did you get it on sale? Aliexpress just had it for $249 for the black Mi max 2 version. Sadly the deal is now over.

  4. Hats off to Xiaomi for listening to their customers protests on forums, Xiaomi has the Mi Max 2 in an ALL BLACK variant up for pre-sale on aliexpress.
    That was the only thing putting me off buying a Mi Max 2 – I can’t stand looking at a black display screen, against white borders. I far prefer a complete and seamless stealth black that seems to merge the display with the body of the phone.
    I will be watching GB to see when they list this version, and will get it from them. I far prefer dealing with GB, as they have DHL as a shipping option, which is really the only reliable and extremely fast way of getting equipment into my hands here in Africa.

    • Well, I ordered one in the Aliexpress sale for $249. I should have it in two weeks. So look for an unboxing only video of it. It will be short and sweet. Just a look at it and side by side with my white face, gold Mi Max 2. So glad they have a black version as I also prefer black.

  5. Hey Chris, thanks for another great hands-on review. 🙂

    You wouldn’t happen to have a Netflix subscription, would you?

    The reason I ask is that I noticed that some Xiaomi devices (with certain ROMs) either do not support the Netflix app, or if it’s supported, the offline video download option is disabled due to DRM limitations.

    Have you had a chance to check if Netflix and the offline video download option are working on the Mi Max 2?

    Thanks!

    • No time for it anymore, but I checked it out on the Redmi Note 4X and the offline video mode not available. So no official support I think on any of the Xiaomi’s. Safe to say no at this point.

  6. Chris, I am planning to buy it for Spain,what about the 3G, 4G networks and calls coverage?

    I am a Vodafone user.

    • Yes works fine for Spain 4G and 3G

      • Well, I bought the international version already.

        Thanks anyway and lots of thanks for your great work.

        Alex

  7. can you confirm:
    no OIS
    no B20

    ?

  8. For those of us in Mainland China, the 64GB version is currently selling for the equivalent of 250 USD–but there is a two week wait for delivery…

    • Better price, I paid $309. But a 2 week wait? How did HongKong Goldway get it so quick then?

  9. I bought the first MiMax for Uber driving, the size, 4/128 RAM/ROM , GPS and big battery are ideal. I didn’t plug in the charger today until it went from 95% to 19% in four and a half hours with screen active for all of that, plus GPS, Uber and BT. I paid AUD 350 (USD 260-270) for 4/128/SD652 and I don’t see that value in the new one yet. I do have to remind myself to make sure that it’s properly arranged in my pants pocket when I sit down, so I don’t crack the screen, which maybe looks as if I’m adjusting the ballroom to a quizzical observer! I remember people imagining people holding slab-sized devices to their ears and writing mocking reviews of HTC Flyer 7″ and early Galaxy Tabs. It turned out to be not that absurd, there are always BT headsets, and nowadays people walk around holding even 4″ phones as if they were a slice of toast, about to take a bite, talking and listening to the bottom edge. When the phone’s held like that, nobody can tell what size it is.

    • The first model was is great value, maybe too good which is why they have upped the price. I remember when I got my Galaxy Note, the first one in my town here and got a lot of comments on how massive it is, mocking etc. But look how things changed.Most phones are 5 inches plus. And even the iPhone 6 and 7 Plus are big when you look at the top and bottom bezels. It’s the way it’s heading and I like it. No longer do I need a small tablet, I have one in my pocket almost.

      And for GPS as you say it’s great. The screen is larger and brighter than most dedicated GPS units.

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