Droid RAZR HD And RAZR MAXX HD Smartphones Review (Part 2)

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Performance and Battery life

While almost all other manufacturer is talking about innovative cameras, quad-core processor and fussy style, Motorola has decided to make battery life become its bread and butter. The trend started with the Droid RAZR MAXX – the first phone we have ever seen with what could be called an excessively large battery. The RAZR MAXX HD keeps the same 3,300mAh non-removable pack while the thinner sibling goes with a 2,500mAh one. That is significant upgrade over 2012’s model and one that delivers a stunning amount of longevity. Under normal usage, the RAZR HD sails through a full day easily, and two days is well reach with judicious use of the screen. On our battery drain test (which involves looping a video with the display brightness set at 50%, WiFi and GPS turned on), the RAZR HD chugged along for an impressive 10 hours and 42 minutes – that’s longer than most tablets. The MAXX HD only takes things further, testing this reviewer’s patience by refusing to die for 14 hours and 4 minutes. That does not quite match the epic longevity of the first MAXX, but it’s still a nearly unheard of number. What’s more, both lasted almost a full hour longer than Motorola’s official figures – that’s so exciting and surprising.

RAZR MAXX HD’ 3,300mAh battery

RAZR MAXX HD’ 3,300mAh battery

The dual-core 1.5GHz Snapdragon S4 inside is hardly advanced any more, but it’s still more than enough to keep the handset runs fast. Navigating the UI is smooth, seamless and the device hardly seems to break a sweat firing up most applications. Even those heavy 3D games like Dead Space and Grand Theft Auto III hum along on the new RAZRs. However, we regularly encounter serious lag with the keyboard. Quite often, the keyboard would take a few seconds to catch up to our typing, and memory-intensive apps like Chrome seemed to exacerbate this matter.


·         Quadrant: 4,982

·         Vellamo 2.0: 1,631

·         SunSpider 0.9.1 (ms) 1,914

·         An Tu Tu: 6,674

·         GLBenchmark 2.5 Egypt Offscreen (fps): 13

·         CF-Bench: 9,547

Motorola Droid RAZR M

·         Quadrant: 4,944

·         Vellamo 2.0: 1,648

·         SunSpider 0.9.1 (ms) 1,951

·         An Tu Tu: 6,364

·         GLBenchmark 2.5 Egypt Offscreen (fps): 13

·         CF-Bench: 9,392

Galaxy S III (Verizon)

·         Quadrant: 4,937

·         Vellamo 2.0: 1,627

·         SunSpider 0.9.1 (ms) 1,740

·         An Tu Tu: 6,857

·         GLBenchmark 2.5 Egypt Offscreen (fps): 13

·         CF-Bench: 9,375

The phone maintain their positions in tests and as expected, kept pace with many phones on the market with the same 1.5GHz Snapdragon internals. The SunSpider score of 1,914 is quite significantly, despite the surprisingly high considering similarly specked devices from Samsung and Moto have completed the test much faster in the past. On the other hand, our quantitative testing turned up no surprises. These serious powerhouses such as the Galaxy Note II and the Optimus G can run faster than RAZR, but even the most demanding users will rarely need this type of horsepower that regularly. More important for casual users will be the ability to consume data with impressive speed and HD did not disappoint. During several tests, we averaged about 17Mbps download and 14Mbps upload around New York City. We also found that call quality is surprisingly clear, based on the poor performance of its smaller sibling, the RAZR M, in this area.


RAZR MAXX HD’s camera is on the top of the device

RAZR MAXX HD’s camera is on the top of the device

We are beginning to believe that Motorola found a formula for effective shooting way back with the Droid X and has not really changed much since then. Of course, things have become better, just not so much. We do not say that we are disappointed with the image quality here – far from it actually. The camera has always been a strong point of Motorola phones and the same is true with the new RAZR brothers. Both have an 8-megapixel sensor inside, the same as you would find in the RAZR M, Droid RAZR, Bionic and all high-end Moto devices since 2010. While the number of pixels has not increased, the image clarity and saturation has. In daylight, images are bright and colorful, on par with most point-and-shoots. Even indoors and under artificial light, the results are quite good, although we would recommend setting the flash off unless necessary. The new camera interface also improves over previous models with a less cluttered presentation and controls that are more agile. Perhaps our favorite feature is the ability to detect the phone in less-than-ideal lighting conditions and prompt you to switch to HDR mode.

RAZR MAXX HD and RAZR HD sample shot

RAZR MAXX HD and RAZR HD sample shot

The video quality is less impressive compared to still photos, but it is not a weak point. The results were quite reasonable and colors were well saturated, though there was some noise found in dark parts of the frame. Perhaps the biggest criticism against the video is the lack of image stabilization. While we do not expect Motorola to insert optical image stabilization into an already extremely dense phone, some digital smoothing of our visible jitters would have been greatly appreciated. Sound recorded by the RAZR HD was so great. As you can hear in the sample clip, midday traffic and a strong wind are reduced to a dull background hum and this reviewer’s narration can be heard loud and clear over the din.

Sample shot from RAZR MAXX HD and RAZR HD

Sample shot from RAZR MAXX HD and RAZR HD

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