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    Mi Mix 2 Review

    Xiaomi had a big impact on the smartphone market last year when it launched the Mi Mix without a bezel, well ahead of its rivals such as Samsung and Apple. Unfortunately, it was not as widely distributed as competitive flagships and did not even reach India, possibly the second largest market for the Chinese device manufacturer.

    The company hopes to do things right with its successor, the Mix 2. Based on that same magnificent design with improved hardware, it is a cheaper way to experience Android without bezels than the rest. But is it worth its initial price of $ 560? I tried it during the last weeks to find out.

    The Mix 2 undoubtedly feels like a premium device, with an aluminum alloy frame, glossy ceramic backing and 18k gold embellishments around the camera lens. That makes it a pretty phone, but it would have been nice to see some smart touches to differentiate this phone from the lot, like the elegant speaker notch just above the screen.

    In addition, it feels quite heavy, weighs 185 g (that's a little more than the 155 g of the Samsung Galaxy S8), and the high sides make it a bit difficult to grab compared to the Mi 6 which is easy to grab because to its curves.

    I received a test unit without a protective case, and I had to use the Mix 2 all the time. What good is a ceramic backing if it collects stains all the time and needs to be cradled in a hard case?

    The Mix 2 is quite taller than the company's previous flagship, the Mi 6, and has a size almost identical to the OnePlus 5, but has a significantly higher screen. Then, if you are used to handling typical 5.5-inch devices, you will feel at home with the Mix 2, while enjoying a more immersive screen.

    I was worried about accidental touches on a device without a bezel like this, but it didn't turn out to be a problem. Xiaomi has also made some improvements in the construction of the original Mix, including a chin that is 12 percent smaller and a slightly wider 18: 9 screen ratio (compared to 17: 9 in the original Mi Mix).

    Features and hardware:-
    The Mix 2 has to do with that screen without a bezel, so there is no room for things like a headphone jack and an IR blaster. The fingerprint sensor is located on the back panel under the lens of a camera. It can fit on two nano SIM cards, but there is no support for a microSD to expand the internal storage of 128 GB.

    The 3,400 mAh battery runs out quickly thanks to Quick Charge 3.0 and lasts a full day, but you may end up running a little earlier if you use the camera a lot.

    Although my review unit did not come with one, Xiaomi includes a custom hard case with each Mix 2 retailer. It would have been nice to also see a pair of USB-C headphones to go with the phone, since it lacks a 3.5mm jack. Fortunately, its double speakers mounted at the bottom are loud and clear enough to enjoy watching videos only in a quiet room.

    Xiaomi did a great job with the Mix 2 screen. It measures 5.99 inches diagonally, with an aspect ratio of 18: 9 at a resolution of 2,160 x 1,080 pixels (also known as FHD +). While initially I only appreciated the front fascia for how elegant it looked with the thinnest bezels, I realized how much more screen space you get with this phone, after comparing it with older devices of the same dimensions.

    The LCD screen is very bright and is highly readable in sunlight, with pleasantly saturated colors and enough contrast to make things look stunning. The videos and games with vibrant graphics are absolutely lovely in Mix 2, and it's easy to watch that beautiful screen for much longer than necessary: just hit a nice live wallpaper and you'll know what I'm talking about.

    The Mix 2 is designed to rival almost any other Android flagship at this time, with a Snapdragon 835 2.45Ghz processor that is combined with an Adreno 540 GPU and 6 GB of RAM.With all that power, it is capable of handling almost anything you can throw, from graphics-intensive games to video editing and camera applications. In addition, your software does a good job of managing memory allocation, so you will almost never see the device slow down because it is running a lot of applications simultaneously.

    Currently running the Xiaomi MIUI 8 software layer on Android 7.1.1, but it is scheduled to receive an update with MIUI 9 shortly, now that the stable version is available for a couple of other company phones.
    MIUI 8 has been around for a good while now.

    The main camera of the Mix 2 is a 12 megapixel camera with an f / 2.0 aperture and 4-axis optical image stabilization; Xiaomi says that this is the same system as the Mi 6, without the telephoto module. That means there is no optical zoom or portrait style bokeh effect to enjoy on this phone.Too bad, because although the camera of the Mi 6 was not great, I found myself taking out my phone from time to time to take a photo with the zoom or the depth effect activated. With the limited shooting capabilities of Mix 2, the drawbacks of the standard camera are even more obvious.

    It was difficult for me to get a lot of depth of field unless I had the subject very close to the lens. For a better understanding of why this is the case despite the wide f / 2.0 opening, see our own piece by Napier López.

    While it managed to capture some detail on well-lit objects and surfaces, the camera was prone to blowing reflections in the sky and omitted the mark with bright colors unless they were the focus point. And if you are in low light conditions, expect a lot of noise throughout the spectrum, even if you are indoors during the day. All of that added to an uninspiring camera system that I didn't mind using, except for the purpose of testing it for this review.

    So why doesn't the Mix 2 have a dual camera? Xiaomi product leader Jai Mani explained that there were two main reasons why the flagship came with a single primary shooter:
    The 5-megapixel front camera, located in the lower right corner of the front fascia, makes the images uncomfortable in portrait mode. Instead, the camera application encourages you to switch to landscape mode. It does the job and includes a number of features, which include beautification and 1080p video. Just don't expect to get beautiful photos in the dark.

    Should you buy the Mi Mix 2?:-
    The Mix 2 gets high scores for its outstanding performance and design, but is disappointed by a mediocre camera. I could have let that slip to some extent if this were 2016, but phones that cost about a third of the initial Mix 2 price now come with dual cameras that are more attractive to use (even if they're not as great with the image quality).

    But if that is not your main observation post, a gift awaits you. The bezel-free display really lives up to expectations, and once you try it, you will find it difficult to return to a standard phone.Add to that a solid Android experience, a lot of storage space and more processing power than you will need over the next two years, and you will have a solid package in your hands.

    Mix 2 is available in India at  approx Rs. 36,000 ($ 555), and is now in Europe, starting with Spain, at € 499 ($ 579); You can also order from another place in GearBest. If you're not in a hurry, you would do well to wait for the OnePlus 5T, which will be launched next week with a bezel-free design, and demand a similar price (but perhaps a little higher).

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