LeEco Le 2 review: A true winner

The Le 2 smartphone from the Le Eco brand was launched in April 2016 but I hadn’t heard of it until a beautiful rose gold handset made its way to my humble home a week ago. I’ll be honest – I had some trepidation about the colour as some reviews had called it ‘pink’ rather than rose gold. Trust me, the colour is neither too feminine nor too loud. It’s just gold with a hint of dusty pink. See for yourself.

 

At 5.5 inches, the phone fit perfectly in my palm and I was pleased with the HD display, on par with phones that are priced much higher. Le 2 is priced at Rs 11,999 (even lower if you get it during the online sales) but its specifications match those of more expensive models. A 16 MP back and 8 MP front camera, 3 GB RAM, 32 GB ROM, 3000 mAh battery and Android Marshmallow OS are just some of the highlights.

Camera

You might wonder – what difference does it make whether you have a 13 or 16 MP camera? As it happens, quite a bit. Especially when the camera comes with phase detection autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash and of course, panorama and HDR. Here is an image taken from the bridge at CST Railway station in the morning with Le 2, slightly improved with Instagram’s Amaro filter:

I think the Le 2 is well suited for travel photography given its excellent clarity, focus and ability to fill in light in dark surroundings. Sometimes, the phone-provided brightness proves to be excessive but can that be remedied by tilting the phone slightly. The 8 MP front camera comes with a beautification mode that is not too overwhelming. Here is an unedited indoor selfie taken with an overhead light:

Selfie with Le 2

As a travel writer, I expect my phone to deliver jerk-free, clear videos with good audio. Le 2 performs quite well on this front and comes with three speeds – 2160p@30fps, 1080p@30fps and 720p@120fps. Check out this video of CST I shot in the night with Le 2:

Night photography with Le 2 is not as simple with even the slightest movement resulting in a blurry image. But if you have an extremely steady hand, you can still get good images in the darkness. Here is a panorama photograph of CST station decked up in the customary night lights. Did you know that they change every day? And on special occasions, there is thematic lighting such as tri-colour lights on Independence Day.

CST station, Mumbai lit up in the night

Appearance

There is no extra space on the sides which lends the Le 2 a clean, sleek look although seen sideways, it’s not as slim as some other recently launched phones. The phone is reasonably light at 153 grams and comes with the dual SIM feature. Apart from the popular rose gold, the phone is also available in gold, grey and silver.

Sound

CDLA Type-C earphones with Le 2

The ear phones that come with the phone look fancy and for good reason. They are the world’s first CDLA Type-C interface, replacing the traditional 3.5mm earphones and come with end-to- end lossless digital music transmission. Although individually priced at Rs 1,999, the earphones are bundled with the smartphone and offer a truly spectacular music experience. You have to try it to believe it.

Other aspects

If you’re a Reliance Jio SIM user, you’ll be happy to know that Le 2 supports 4G networks in addition to 3G, LTE and GSM. Although I haven’t tried it yet, Le 2 owners can take advantage of the LeEco Membership program, which gives them access to 2000+ Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi and Bengali films; 3000+ hours of curated shows, 150+ live TV channels and 3.5 million songs. Le 2 has an excellent fingerprint scanner and bi-directional charging connection as well.

Need to know

While the LeEco Le 2 scores excellently on most fronts, here are a few aspects you should be aware of before purchasing it:

  • The memory is non-extendable but 32 GB should suffice for your needs.
  • The charging port is not the same as other Android phones; so make sure you don’t lose the charger that comes with the phone.
  • The audio jack is not the conventional 3.5mm but promises to deliver superior sound quality.
  • Le 2 has a nano SIM slot so you may need to cut your SIM card.

In the process of reviewing LeEco Le 2, I appreciated the beauty of my city and the magic of everyday sights a little more. And for that, I am glad.

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