Asus Zenfone Zoom Review

Introduction


Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus Zenfone Zoom Review
Asus has found its niche in the mid-range segment, as opposed to trying to duke it out with the elites in the high-end space. From the looks of it, though, it's working out for the company, at least for the most part. Its Asus ZenFone 2, for instance, proved to be a rousing success, spurring countless variants in the process.

Now, a full year after its initial announcement, another ZenFone model is here in the flesh. The Asus ZenFone Zoom, as it is called, sports optical zoom with its camera – a feature that's few and far between in phones. Knowing that, the handset's aim is to specialize in photography, but is adding optical zoom adequate in defining it as a supreme camera phone?

The package contains:


Design

Even with the internal camera gear, it's able to retain an impressively slim profile.

While we weren't particularly won over by the ZenFone 2's design, the ZenFone Zoom presents us with a slightly more refined look. From the front, it looks like all the other ZenFone 2 variants, but there's a dramatic shift everywhere else.

For starters, the Zoom features an aerospace-grade alloy trim that closely resembles the iPhone, adding a sense of strength and durability to its construction. And the rear employs a genuine leather finish with a raised stitching pattern on one side to mimic the look of a subtle handle.

Clearly, there's far more attention paid to every aspect of the phone's design, ensuring it doesn't go unnoticed. It's a bit of a top-heavy device, actually, and the raised area for its camera compartment makes holding it in the hand feel a bit unusual, as if we're accidentally touching the lens, but we suppose that one becomes used to that over time.

Catering as best it can in being a camera-centric device, the ZenFone Zoom comes with a practical set of buttons along its right edge. Specifically, it features a dedicated two-level shutter key, a tiny button strictly for video recording, and its volume controls adjust the zoom function within the camera interface. There's even a small nook along the right corner of the phone to accommodate the included lanyard as well, showing us once again it's doing its best in being a capable camera phone.


Asus ZenFone Zoom

Asus ZenFone Zoom

Dimensions

6.26 x 3.1 x 0.47 inches

158.9 x 78.84 x 11.95 mm

Weight

6.53 oz (185 g)

Asus ZenFone 2

Asus ZenFone 2

Dimensions

6 x 3.04 x 0.43 inches

152.5 x 77.2 x 10.9 mm

Weight

6.00 oz (170 g)

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Dimensions

5.41 x 2.79 x 0.65 inches

137.5 x 70.8 x 16.6 mm

Weight

7.05 oz (200 g)

Nokia Lumia 1020

Nokia Lumia 1020

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.81 x 0.41 inches

130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

Asus ZenFone Zoom

Asus ZenFone Zoom

Dimensions

6.26 x 3.1 x 0.47 inches

158.9 x 78.84 x 11.95 mm

Weight

6.53 oz (185 g)

Asus ZenFone 2

Asus ZenFone 2

Dimensions

6 x 3.04 x 0.43 inches

152.5 x 77.2 x 10.9 mm

Weight

6.00 oz (170 g)

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Samsung Galaxy K zoom

Dimensions

5.41 x 2.79 x 0.65 inches

137.5 x 70.8 x 16.6 mm

Weight

7.05 oz (200 g)

Nokia Lumia 1020

Nokia Lumia 1020

Dimensions

5.13 x 2.81 x 0.41 inches

130.4 x 71.4 x 10.4 mm

Weight

5.57 oz (158 g)

To see the phones in real size or compare them with other models, visit our Visual Phone Size Comparison page


Asus Zenfone Zoom Review

Display

By now, the display is beginning to come off as boring.

Sharing ties to the existing ZenFone line, it's no surprise that the Asus ZenFone Zoom is rocking the same 5.5-inch 1080 x 1920 IPS-LCD, protected by Gorilla Glass 4 this time. At the same time, there are no major changes with its quality. The display exhibits nearly the same characteristics as those on recent ZenFone models. From its detail, 440 nit brightness output, and overblown color reproduction, it's almost identical. Strangely, though, its color temperature runs extremely cold at ~9000K, which is a huge disparity from the 7200K – 7600K ranges we saw with the other phones in the series.

Generally speaking, the qualities of the display paint a modest picture. It's not really as exciting or attractive looking compared to other screens. In fact, it tends to appear a bit washed out at times, even when it's set to its highest brightness level.



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24 Comments

1. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4764; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

Well, another sad story for a camera centric phone that delivers less than expect. Asus better start hiring better designers...it's too repetitive now, more like clones, clones and more clones.

6. Settings

Posts: 2940; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

Like Samsung :)

11. skyline88

Posts: 696; Member since: Jul 15, 2013

at least the Note 5 and S6's cameras performing better than the so called "king of camera" Xperia Z5.

22. Remmy

Posts: 187; Member since: Jul 31, 2012

tell me about it lol

16. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

zenfone 2: clone wars

20. jerrymilton

Posts: 11; Member since: Oct 05, 2015

you base this off this pathetic review? repetitive phone w/ optical zoom in a slim design...wait there aren't any others. what un-clone like phone do you rock ?

2. jellmoo

Posts: 2522; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

I... I can't even. This just got the same score as the V10 and Z5 series. It has a minimum brightness of 55 nits! You could guide a plane to a runway with this thing on the lowest brightness level! It's obscenely oversized for a 5.5 inch display (even larger than the 6S Plus) and isn't particularly good at anything, including being a camera! Who is this device for? It's more expensive than the Zenfone 2, and worse than it at just about everything other than zooming in. How? How are these things scored? It makes zero sense!

12. Coconut00

Posts: 485; Member since: Jan 13, 2015

PA scoring system: just slap a 7

15. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4764; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

+0.5 if it's a flagship.

17. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

another +0.5 if it have UI that look like iOS

4. Blest42188

Posts: 55; Member since: Aug 05, 2015

So how'd this week phone get the same score as good phones?

5. WPX00

Posts: 508; Member since: Aug 15, 2015

AHAHAHA 55 NITS MINIMUM BRIGHTNESS! My eyes get burnt even looking at the 23-nit minimum on the Moto X 2014 at night!

13. Coconut00

Posts: 485; Member since: Jan 13, 2015

True. I own a Galaxy Alpha (achieves 2 nits minimum) and I still use Twilight at night so my eyes don't hurt.

7. Settings

Posts: 2940; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

7? Really? SEVEN?! On the same league with Lumia 950, Xperia Z5, and LG V10? And the review was badly written. Ugh, I bet ASUS hasnt paid the bills.

18. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

its those Lumia, Xperia, and V10 that hasnt paid the bills, they deserve 8 at minimum -_-

8. Deca-core

Posts: 75; Member since: Nov 20, 2015

i doubt anyone will buy this phone.

9. CX3NT3_713

Posts: 2341; Member since: Apr 18, 2011

Price it @ $200,, then maybe....

10. stijnvbml

Posts: 56; Member since: Feb 20, 2013

People, a 7 isnt a bad score for this phone. The way they achieved optical zoom is innovative and unique (and expensive probably) and given that it is more than a gimmick, I think this concept works. Such a unique idea combined with 64 gb of storage is already nice. And given the price of $400,-, Asus did a good job on my opinion. Would I buy (or even recommend) this phone? Absolutely not. But it is great to see usefull innovation and I think phonearena did the right job with rewarding them for that (a 7 is like a high grade here)

14. jellmoo

Posts: 2522; Member since: Oct 31, 2011

That's ridiculous. One cool feature does not a great device make. This thing literally fails at just about everything else. It's huge, has a terrible screen, and features no camera improvements other than the zoom. This is actually a downgrade from the Zenfone 2 in a lot of ways. So how does it make sense? The V10 is a better G4 in a lot of ways and gets a score of 7. The Zenfone Zoom is a worse Zenfone 2 in a lot of ways and gets a score of 7? The problem isn't the score. The problem is the score in comparison to the other scores that PA has given out recently. They are completely and utterly arbitrary and the reviews have been so darn lacking. This device has a minimum brightness of 55 nits. 55 frickin' nits! There isn't anything written about it. Why?

23. ecologer

Posts: 32; Member since: Jul 25, 2014

I just hope that someday the innovative zoom will be coupled with a top-class sensor and software. Too many times great ideas have got left behind because of a poor execution.

19. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

Zenfone zoom (zoomed 3x) vs note5 + V10 (full resolution) on outdoor from the same distance will be great :D

21. jerrymilton

Posts: 11; Member since: Oct 05, 2015

asking for a LONGER LENS than offered...ya'll might have wanted someone that knew a tad about photography to actually review the device. The phone covers 28-84mm optical and keep in mind the most used Zoom lens on the planet by pros is the 24-70mm zoom. This phone has been out in India for a few weeks and review after review actually comparing pictures of other devices...the Zoom spanks the iPhone 6S and the Samsung S6 which isn't surprising cuz "digital zoom" that all other phones offer isn't a zoom at all. digital zoom cameras simply crop the pictures (and megapixels with it). Also not covered in this review...Optical Zoom lenses do alot more than "bring things closer"...if you take the same shot in a wide lens and a zoom...the background of the zoom will appear larger. photography 101

24. m_nomolosanu

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 08, 2016

I don't know who wrote this review, but it's kind of wrong. It says that the time to taka a picture with Nokia Lumia 1020 is 10 seconds. Well, I own 2 Nokia Lumia 1020 and I can confirm that the real time is only 3,7 seconds, not 10.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

ZenFone Zoom
  • Display 5.5" 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 5 MP front
  • Processor Intel Atom, Quad-core, 2330 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh

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