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Suggestion for Android Phone

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

In searching for a new phone for the last few weeks, I've finally started to hone in on what I want out of it. The problem is I'm not terribly familiar with the huge variety of phones. This is where more knowledgeable Head-Fiers come in.


The mandatory features are simple:

  • Android (unless a compelling case can be made for iPhone 4S; no 5 until there's aftermarket support)
  • MHL support (or otherwise support out to external DAC)
  • 1GB+ RAM
  • Large onboard or upgradable storage
  • 2012 SOC chipset (ie, Qualcomm Snapdragon w/ Krait)
  • 4" - 4.3" screen (I hate big phones)


Things I'd really like but are not absolute musts:

  • Removable battery
  • Gorilla Glass 2 (I know, too new to be widespread)
  • Water- & dust-proofing a la many East Asian phone models



I am not picky about cameras, HD displays, or any of that. Phones for me are phones first, media players second. Everything else comes after these two. Price is not too much of a concern. I have Verizon right now, but given sufficient poking would not have trouble switching to AT&T (their service has been great for me in the past). I don't particularly care what version of Android it comes with since I'm likely to be replacing it with latest/greatest JB.


Right now the only two phones I know of that meets these criteria is the HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE and Meizu MX 4-core. The form factor is right on both and they appear to meet all of the above specs, and is well thought of in general. The S3 mini excited me until I discovered how bad they gimped the hardware. The Meizu MX is also a possibility, although I can't think of why I'd get it vs the 4-core. The Lenovo LePhone S2 looks neat, same form factor as the others but not as snappy in the processor department.


Thoughts or suggestions?

post #2 of 17

You will have a hard time finding a phone which is dust/water proof while at the same time having removable battery.

otherwise if you can find the Sony Acro S it fits pretty much ticks all your boxes including the waterproof part.

No krait core yet though


post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 

Nice find! It doesn't appear to have MHL support though. Would the HDMI port successfully substitute for that to use an external DAC? I'm not sure I've seen or read of an HDMI to USB or HDMI to SPDIF cable, which I'm pretty sure would be necessary.

post #4 of 17
Originally Posted by BBEG View Post

Nice find! It doesn't appear to have MHL support though. Would the HDMI port successfully substitute for that to use an external DAC? I'm not sure I've seen or read of an HDMI to USB or HDMI to SPDIF cable, which I'm pretty sure would be necessary.

Ah crap sorry my bad I forgot about MHL, yea no it's got a straight HDMI but no MHL support.

the other thing i can recommend is the Sony Xperia V which isn't out yet but the specs are official that has MHL and the new Krait core to boot. (I am not bias towards the Sony phones but you mentioned 4.3" max as the size and they give you the highest res for that screen size)



post #5 of 17
If you have a HDMI port, you don't need MHL at all.
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 

It looks like you're right salanos. It would, however, require an adapter (I don't know any portable DACs with HDMI input), which would push it out of what I'd call portable. If I went MHL to SPDIF, the adapter is a fairly small plug - this would let me use my E17 without any trouble, I think, and the MHL port would still give me the option to use just an OTG cable with other compatible DACs that aren't as picky.

post #7 of 17

The Razr Maxx, HTC ONE S, Samsung Gaax S II HD, Razr i are pretty close to what you are looking for in phone.

Edited by ZARIM - 10/19/12 at 11:15am
post #8 of 17

if you're looking for phone first, i recommend the razr maxx hd- also consumers report rated first among androids

it has the longest battery life of all the android phones (roughly twice the capacity of the other ones), huge hd screen, and good specs

only negative is subpar camera


if you want bigger, and better screen, the samsung s3 is a solid choice


id say stay away from htc

premium material but shoddy build quality (the battery dilodges from the connectors in mine from time to time and ive heard others not being totally pleased with theirs)

post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 

The S3 is out. Too big a phone for me. My Droid X is already at the upper limit of what I like size-wise. Razr Maxx HD pushes my form factor limit a bit, as does the HTC One S. I'm still leery about HDMI, but it looks like more and more DACs are becoming compatible with non-MHL Android phones and tablets, so MHL for external DAC use may not need to be a requirement anymore.


I appreciate the suggestions guys, keep 'em coming. I'm very curious to see what new phones will release in time for the winter sales...

Edited by BBEG - 10/19/12 at 8:16pm
post #10 of 17

You might like the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini, it's should begin shipping in November.

I'm actually fed up looking for a descent 4" android myself.

post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 

Slight update. Come December I'm leaving Verizon for T-Mobile; HSPA+ coverage is great where I am and the monthly savings will more than make up for buying an unlocked phone outright (within 6 months at most). Bouncing between a few Xperia phones, the Xiaomi 2, Razor i, and a few others, I finally settled on the Meizu MX. Cost was a large part of that - this group buy makes a very convincing argument given what the phone comes with. If it falls through, Q1 2013 looks nice for smart phones and the MX II (which looks awesome) comes out January; I can live with a temp phone 'til the unlocked version launches.


I probably would've got the S3 mini if it would've just been a miniaturized S3. Given how they gimped it, though, I don't think it would've been very much of an upgrade over my Droid X. (Evidently something of a good phone when it came out. Who knew?)


Thanks for the suggestions regardless guys. It gave me many more directions to look. Good for the knowledge pool.

post #12 of 17

XIAMO MI-2 biggrin.gif ... NEXUS-4 biggrin.gif.... GALAXY NEXUSrolleyes.gif

post #13 of 17

I'm about to buy a new phone. I've narrowed my options to Sony Xperia S and Acro S, I preffer the Acro S because of the water resistance and micro sd slot, but I doubt if my Grado Sr60i will fit in that covered headphone jack. Any advice?? :D

post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 

Nexus phones are a no-go for me personally; too big. I'm not very compromising on something I'd be dropping a few bills for. (That said, T-Mobile's offering the S3 for $0 with contract for Black Friday. Something for others to consider.)


I ended up getting the Meizu MX quad core. $388 ($440 shipped) for the unlocked 32GB HK version was too tempting to pass up. I've loved it as a media player so far; subjectively it's doing as good or better from the headphone jack as my 6G Nano does from an E6. It also has, in my opinion, the perfect form factor for a smartphone. Having said that, holy crap how could I have missed the spec sheet on the Xiaomi MI-2? What an attractive phone. If I could get one for the same price as the MX then I very well might've gone for that instead; not quite as small as I'd like but it competes evenly or favorably in basically every area vs the MX, S3, and ONE X.


For the patient sorts, the MX2 launches the 27th and what little has been revealed of its specs will might make it worth waiting for, especially if the $417 (32GB) / $480 (64GB) price rumor holds true. That's cheaper than the MX quad core, so group deals like the one that let me get my MX for $388 are also likely. If its audio quality is as good as the MX 4 core then it will probably sit pretty on top of the audio-oriented smartphone world.


I love flagships. smily_headphones1.gif

post #15 of 17

You love flag ships. What about the oppo find 5.





Just insanity. 1080p display on a 5" is not a sane design decision but I guess it´s nerdy at least. Graphics chip need to be something else to balance that out.



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