Moto Z Play & Moto Mods Full Review

Motorola, the company that actually invented the mobile phone, is back on the market. Now under the helm of not Google, but Lenovo. So what does Lenovo Motorola Moto Z Play – that’s quite a handful by the way – have in store for us? Stick around and find out.

I have covered the unboxing in a seperate video that you can see below, but aside from that you get standard wall plug with a power cable and the phone itself. Notably, there was no headphones included in the box. To get the specs out of the way it has an:

– Android 6.0.1 Marshmellow OS (7.0.0 upcoming),

– Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 Octacore CPU

– Adreno 506 GPU

– 3 GB DDR3 RAM

– 32 GB internal storage that can be expanded with an internal microSD card slot.

These specification enable the Moto Z Play to be blisteringly fast when using the UI, multitasking and playing games after all. We did not with our 1+ months of use of the device ever encounter lagging or applications closing when we did not want them to – everything just worked and that is the ultimate goal of a device, that it enables us to be more productive, not obstruct us in our daily usage of services.

The dimensions of the device are 156x76x7mm that enabled Lenovo to cram inside a 5,5″ Super AMOLED screen with 403 ppi, so a full HD panel that is covered by Corning Gorilla Glass 3 for security. As is to be expected from a SAMOLED screen the colors are amazing and super vibrant and the information on the screen is perfecly legible even in direct sunlight. Above the screen there is a 5MP camera that has a wide angle 85-degree POV lens with a dedicated flash and night mode. It is perfectly satisfactory for selfies and stuff like that, especially with additional beautification software, so image processing, but still it isn’t anything spectacular. But that can’t be said about the rear camera. It’s a 16 megapixel shooter with laser and phase-detection auto-focus, a wide and bright f/2.0 aperture and zero shutter lag. Yes I do miss the OIS found on Moto Z Play’s bigger brother, but still if your hands aren’t particularly shaky, it is good enough. The images taken by the camera in good lighting conditions are, I would say really good. The quality drops off a little as there is less available light and when tracking fast-moving subjects – the camera just can’t keep up with. But still it supports Auto HDR, 4x digital zoom, panorama pictures that are pretty messed up, especially in low light, and of course 4K recording. The latter isn’t anything special, it certainly can’t compete with Samsung Galaxy S7’s or Apple Iphone 7’s camera, but still it isn’t even in the same price range, therefore we can’t expect that. The warp stabilizer is noticeable, but still, if you are not too picky about your image quality and you can appreciate the inclusion of 4K while not being overly obsessed about the not that high bitrate and so on, you will be pleased with the image reproduced by the camera.

Moving away from the camera and onto the speakers and microphones – in the Moto Z Play, three microphones are hidden for better noise reduction for talking on the phone. But sadly I have to report that there is only 1 front sided speaker on the phone. That is the earphone speaker – and it can’t compete with HTC’s stereo solutions that blast towards you while viewing the device. It’s just so uninspiring, but then again, the reasoning behind those is Moto Mods.

They are the reason that make Lenovo’s Motorola Moto Z line actually interesting and make us wonder about the future prospects that with the technology. Moto Mods enable you to clip on a mod, be it a speaker, be it a projector, be it a photo-expansion onto your back side of your Moto Mods compatible device via a few strong magnets and these golden connector pins that enable a good fit without any chance of them falling off. To the people afraid about the future compatibility about Moto Mods – we have received confirmation that Moto Mods will be compatible for two generations. So Moto Z Play will be compatible with Moto Mods coming out in not 2016, not 2017, but in 2018 too! And that, that gives us some peace of mind.

We’ve talked about the future potential of the devices, but what are they? Major parnters are developing Moto Mods products, such as GoPro. But as of right now we have the Hasselblad camera with 10x optical zoom, we have the Instashare projector that broadcasts your screen via WiFi direct, but onto an actual, physical projector, we have JBL speaker, we have a dedicated, 2000+ mAh battery and of course the style mods, that enable us to change the back side of our Moto Z phone.

Currently I would be hard pressed to say that its a system worth buying into, as it feels an early-adopter program right now, with so scarce a selection of products. But if we are to believe the words of Lenovo, more products and mods are coming. And then it will be a decent and sensible product to buy yourself into, because the Moto Mods themselves are definitely not cheap – as the Hasselblad camera costs over 250 euro, and the battery is over 80 euros, so not trivial by any stretch of the imagination.

But it has to be said that when the Moto Mods are connected, the experience is better when compared to other devices – so the speakers on the JBL mod are better than any other mobile phone on the market, the same can be said about the camera and battery with the addon. In some dumbed-down way it is similar to the Google Aria project that was cancelled, so who knows what the future holds for the Moto Mods ecosystem. But it is innovative, so there is that. And that is a word that can hardly ever be used in the mobile sector these days, so thumbs up for that.

All in all, the Moto Z Play is a cheaper and affordable Moto Z phone that is somewhat cut down on the specs and boosted in the battery department. For me personally, that is a trade-off that I’m willing to take any day, given that I have never found the performance lacking, there was no apparent lagging whatsoever. Yes, I miss the OIS and the 2.7k or 4k screen, but then again 403ppi on the Moto Z Play is more than enough and you can’t really see the pictures on the display itself. Therefore, if you are an early-adopter and like new, up and coming tech, the Moto Z Play is the decent enough without any mods, and gets only better with their addition.

So if you don’t want to buy a Samsung Galaxy or an Iphone, yet still want a high performing phone that will stand out from the rest, the Moto Z Play is a sure thing.

Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1x Full Review – 350€ premium gaming headset?

Today we are taking a look at the Audio-Technica ADG1X, a high fidelity gaming headset from Audio-Technica, a company otherwise known for their high-end, yet still affordable audio products for professionals. But is it any good? Stick around and find out.

The unboxing experience begins with this large cardboard box that houses the headphones themselves, as well as some cables and adapters to use with different devices and different use case scenarios. But we can’t find any other accessories that other manufacturers would use to bump up the MSRP of the product and justify its high asking price. Well, for starters it has a 53mm driver inside of each earcup and that is quite unseen in the gaming sector. The drivers’ frequency response is from 5 to 35.000Hz with an impedance of 48 Ohms. That is a bit higher than the standard 16-32 for mobile devices and PC’s. But if you have a semi-decent motherboard or a DAC it will be quite sufficient.

Judging from the specs the ADG1X should be out-of-this-world good, as it reproduces more sounds than the human ear can actually hear. And I am glad to report that in the gaming sphere, I have not yet heard a better sounding headset. Given that the ADG1X have an open-back design, they don’t have the low end rumble of other headphones, yet still it has to be said that the latter is extremely punchy and the bass hits are tight. The upper highs can get a little bit fatiguing, depending on the song, but only after a few hours of intense listening. The mids remind me most of the Sennheiser PC373D that we have reviewed before, with their crystal clear sound reproduction in the mid end, that makes listening to music a joy, as well as gives you a definitive edge in FPS games.

Overall the soundstage is really wide. Most headphones make it feel like the sound is coming from a small point in the middle of your head, while the ADG1X made it feel like sound was coming from around your entire head. While overall it’s not perfect, it’s about as good as you are going to get from a gaming headset, that is not audiophile-grade headphones that have an attached microphone.

Speaking of the latter, its a real, condenser type microphone with a supercardoid pickup pattern. It disables any outside noises to be heard while you’re gaming and communicating with your teammates, so that the voice comms remain clean and without any obstructions from your family and pets for example. While I admit that it is a bit noisy, it is much more clean and does not pop or do anything like that, as other gaming oriented headphones like to do.

We’ve been reviewing this headset for quite some time now and we still haven’t talked about the visual aspect. It is in my opinion quite stunning with it’s matte black, space gray and rich-looking blue design. Of course, looks aren’t everything and the build quality is satisfactory to say the least for a product priced so high. Everything feels sturdy, well made and doesn’t creak, pop or produce unwanted noise. It just makes us feel that the ADG1X are made to withstand regular everyday use and abuse.

Onto the last but definitely not least – the comfort. The padding on the ADG1X is comprised not of a standard headband and memory foam earcups. No, Audio-Technica went a completely different route with their patent-pending 3D Wing Support System that sits nicely on top of your head and distributes the load of the 285g headset with ease and you don’t really notice them on your head at all. On the other hand I have a small gripe with the included ear pads that are not memory foam as I would have liked, they are made from a material that just seems a bit too compact if you ask me, but of course that’s just personal preference and your experience may vary.

All in all, if you are looking for a top-of-the-line, premium gaming headset, the Audio-Technica ADG1X are a good fit if you like open-back headphones. Maybe I would have liked to see the price be slashed for like a 100€, but that’s just wishful thinking and quality costs money and the ADG1X definitely do deliver.

Audio-Technica ATH-PDG1 Full Unboxing Experience & First Impressions

We take a look at Audio-Technica’s more affordable, but still premium gaming line offering, the ATH-PDG1!

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Audio-Technica ATH-AG1x Full Unboxing Experience & First Impressions

An unboxing of the premium closed-back Audio-Technica gaming headset, as hosted by Audio Technica Adriatic representative.

Continue reading “Audio-Technica ATH-AG1x Full Unboxing Experience & First Impressions”

Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1x Full Unboxing Experience & First Impressions

An unboxing of the premium Audio-Technica gaming headset, as hosted by Audio Technica Adriatic representative.

Continue reading “Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1x Full Unboxing Experience & First Impressions”

Motorola Moto Z Play Unboxing & First Impressions

We got the chance to check out Lenovo’s Motorola Moto Z Play and produce an unboxing and first impressions video – while we will try to upload a full review soon.

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Lenovo Yoga Book Full Review – A tablet? A laptop? Both.

Is the Yoga Book truly the Ultimate Productivity tablet, as Lenovo is calling it? Well, it certainly looks the part and comes with some nifty features, such as the Wacom digitizer – but is it enough to convince us?

Continue reading “Lenovo Yoga Book Full Review – A tablet? A laptop? Both.”

Logitech Pro Gaming Mouse Full In-depth Review

Today we are taking a look at the de facto mouse meant for esports enthusiasts, Logitech’s Pro Gaming Mouse. Aside from the generic name, does the product deliver fully? Watch the video below.

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