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Starmobile Diamond X1 Retail Unit Review: Starmobile’s Greatest Phablet Yet

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Final Review of the Starmobile Diamond X1

We’ve had the engineering sample of the Starmobile Diamond X1 for a while now, and we’ve comprehensively put it through its paces before. Today, we’ll be reviewing the retail sample of the device, the full fledged retail unit that you’ll pick up from stores for Php 13,990.

Starmobile Diamond X1 Spec Sheet

  • 1.7GHz Octa-core MediaTek Processor
  • 2GB RAM
  • 8GB Internal Storage, Expandable up to 64GB via microSD Card
  • 6.0-inches HD IPS Display, Scratch Resistant Glass
  • 18.0-megapixels primary camera with Autofocus, Flash, and BSI
  • 8.0-megapixels secondary camera with BSI
  • Dual 3G SIM, Dual Standby
  • 3G, HSPA+, WiFi, WiFi Hotspot, GPS, aGPS
  • Yamaha Speakers
  • Android Jelly Bean 4.2
  • 2,300mAh Battery

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Premium, classy design wins over doubters

We just can’t get over the looks people give us when we take the Diamond X1 out of our pocket when we tell them it’s from a local company. The device looks and feels premium, and in our opinion can stand toe-to-toe with other international brands when put side-by-side. The retail unit is built solidly, with no creaks or obvious gaps whatsoever anywhere on it. While it’s big, we wouldn’t call it too unwieldy, though the aluminum back is a bit too slippery for our taste, problem that can be solved by putting on a phone case (hopefully Starmobile comes out with Jelly cases for this soon).

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Another thing we really liked is that while it looks like the Starmobile Diamond X1 uses a unibody aluminum back, that’s not the case. The aluminum back slides out (though with great effort) to reveal the SIM slots, battery and expandable memory slot.

The Starmobile Diamond X1 can handle everything from killing zombies in Dead Trigger 2...

The Starmobile Diamond X1 can handle everything from killing zombies in Dead Trigger 2…

Still blazingly fast

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – the Starmobile Diamond X1 is blazingly, stupidly fast.

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The monstrous 1.7Ghz octa-core processor is able to run everything we threw at it without problems. Tons of zombies in Dead Trigger 2? Pssh. Multiple cars and effects in Table Top Racing? Fuggedaboutit. NBA2k14? Please.

 

...to frustrating you to no end with Flappy Bird. Incidentally, we hate this game with a burning passion.

…to frustrating you to no end with Flappy Bird. Incidentally, we hate this game with a burning passion.

The only time we managed to even slow down the Starmobile Diamond X1 was when we opened an ungodly amount of apps at the same time, and even then there was only minimal lag. In tagalog: halimaw talaga to.

Display isn’t full HD, but that’s ok

We were initially concerned that as big as the Starmobile Diamond X1 is, it only sports an HD IPS display, which would invariably decrease pixel density. While that’s true, you do get used to it afer a while. I use Samsung’s Galaxy S4 as a primary phone before switching to the Starmobile Diamond X1, and while it was a bit jarring at first, I did get used to the slightly lower resolution.

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Great camera, both front and back

It’s no secret that Starmobile’s devices usually have great optics, and the Diamond X1 is no exception.

Tactical selfie! lol

Tactical selfie! lol

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Our EIC Carlo Ople showed the Starmobile Diamond X1’s 18-megapixel camera’s prowess in his initial review, and we’re happy to report that its camera holds up even in low-light and artificial light, two places where traditionally a phone’s camera suffers greatly. We took the shots above inside the National Museum in Manila.

Average battery life

Our battery test results mimic those done by Carlo earlier with the Diamond X1. On heavy use (few hours of gaming, internet use, calls and text) the Starmobile Diamond X1 managed to clock in around 8 hours. More conservative use of the phone managed to get us around 9 to 10 hours on a single charge.

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Verdict: one of the best phablets you can buy today

The Starmobile Diamond X1 is possibly one of the best phablets you can buy today. It’s amazing performance, coupled with its price (which is pretty competitive, all things considered) and solid camera makes it the phablet to beat for other local brands.

 Click here to see our prototype review of the Starmobile Diamond X1

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About John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

59 comments

  1. I just hope you display some AnTuTu benchmark score on your review since it’s already installed in the phablet. By the way, I hope you also put some stability test on your reviews. Thanks.

  2. Hopefully Starmobile’s aftersales are great too, just to balance on how great their units are

  3. OTG supported b eto?.

  4. So, not even a whole day of battery life? I was expecting it to at least last a whole day.

  5. 2300mAh? WTF!? STARMOBILE!!!
    Just grab a THL T100 for 13,499 -_-

  6. Ok, teka lang… wala ba talagang bluetooth to? I am almost sure I don’t see it in any spec sheets from unbox nor from the official poster itself. Care to confirm, anyone?

  7. merun na ba thl t100 sa SM.thnx

  8. I’m not a huge fan on benchmark scores unless they do it consecutively for a give duration. For me the best test is to use it.

    for 2300mAh i don’t think 3 to 5 hours of battery life would cut it. Are they anticipating that the octa core can help manage power?

  9. saan pwede makabili n nito?

  10. What is the Android version of this phone? Just want to ask whether Starmobile updates their phone’s firmware?

  11. is there available battery with a higher mAh for this diamond x1..?

  12. It says at the back of the box that it supports Bluetooth 4.0.. But when I used the app here http://weimenglee.blogspot.com/2013/10/check-if-your-android-device-supports.html?m=1 that detects BLE or Bluetooth 4.0, it says it is not supported.. Cannot someone shed some light on this?

  13. I’d prefer the Cherry mobile Z2 Octa-core over this. The winning proposition is of the “availability”. the Z2 is already on shelves here in cagayan de oro while the SM X1 has yet to arrive. Why would i consider a phone that only exists in blogs and over hyped.

  14. I have an X1 and I have forgotten than I have it on my pocket… Then I fell back side first; still working great… Running smoothly !

  15. Does this phone come in black?

  16. ilang buwan kya itatagal ng phone n to? bka nmn s una lng mbilis?.. please help

  17. I love this site and your reviews but your reviews are now starting to become so predictable and to make it worst, it lacks information… For example, we all know that we really can’t rely on synthetic benchmarks so why not include a full “real life, I exhaust the phone, use ’till you drop” kind of a benchmark thingy? Or if you really want to bring up those tests, why not include some more tests. Also missing from this review is the part where you check out the sound quality, speakers, viewing angles, buttons, responsiveness, speakerphone test, mouth/earpiece test, call quality, network test, wifi connectivity and so much more… C’mon guys, you’re the expert, you know things these things and we don’t. These reviews are here to help us, not confuse us or leave us hanging. Don’t get me wrong, I still prefer your site, but you see, as your site age and gets more and more followers, you’re not improving; it’s the other way around… Or probably you’re now pretty complacent because of the very same reason you’re here? Followers…

    One last thing, that missed info about the Bluetooth… Gee! You can do better than this Carlo. Such a short incomplete review and you forget things still.

    • Hi!

      Thanks for the feedback. We decided to make the commercial unit review shorter than usual because we already wrote extensively about it (several articles about the prototype). I don’t want to make excuses though. I get what you’re saying and I want to let you know that we will strive to make better and more comprehensive reviews in the future. Will also talk to my team so that the quality is upheld regardless of who writes the reviews.

      Again, thank you for the comment! I appreciate the honest feedback.

      Cheers,
      Carlo

      • Thanks Carlo, I’m a fan, I just want your page to be always be praise worthy, as there are so many sites doing the same thing…

        More Power!

        -Dwight

      • Hi Carlo, love your site too! Antutu is also my preferred benchmarking app but would like to request that you also post the test “details”. It does look cool that the overall score is a tad higher than a Galaxy S4’s but I understand that it’s because the ocatacore processor compensates for a lot of other shotcomings and pulls the overall score up. A comparison of the details against the S4 would also be nice :)

      • Go Carlo thanks for this reviews it helps a lot

  18. Specs aside, how does it perform during calls? Malinaw ba ang reception and loud ba? Some local brands focuses on the main point of having a phone (calls and texts). Cherrymobile’s Flare has a poor earpiece as it is not that loud.

    If possible, can you conduct a review focusing not only the camera, screen, Antutu benchmarks etc but also include the quality of calls this device give. (just a suggestion)

  19. The Starmobile X1 is similar to Inte’s Aqua Quad

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zr1qAST2Zw4

  20. Anu po ung GPU nya na and ilan?

  21. help.! got this phone for a few days now., plus 3 dead pixels.. does it qualify for a replacement.?

    • Yes. Suggest you bring it back to the store where you bought it from ASAP. Meron ka 7 day replacement warranty.

      • ok here’s what happened., after goin thru s#!+ getting passed on from memoX in moa to northedsa to pasig, i got nothing kasi wala daw yung approver pero confirmed yung 3 dead pixels. i had to come back & go thru trafic on a weekday and what do i get.? turns out i must have 6 defective pixels to have my unit replaced.! that’s ISO 9241-etc and it’s in the warranty section of the user manual in the phone’s settings you dodo.! e baket yung mga tech nila di rin alam yun.? anyway the moral is if you want to get the latest in specs at this price range you have more chances of getting crap instead.. if dead pixels bother you then you might want to look somewhere else., otherwise check very closely or better yet get the branded ones (but so 2 years behind). thanks carlo and more power.!

  22. Bryan Joshua Salvidar

    bro ang gnada ganda yung design yung build yng kulay
    ng …………..gunpla rocks

  23. If you decide to get this phone you have to get the original case or cover for this unit. It has a magnet that shuts the screen down when you close it. It can significantly save you battery life. I’m not a heavy user think I can squeeze two days of use. Very good phone so far. Happy with the unit.

  24. I have had this for 2 weeks now and I am very happy with its performance. Luckily for me my unit does not suffer from any issue and I made sure of that at the store before buying it. I spent an hour testing it and told the saleslady at memoX in Rob Pioneer that she should bear with me as I needed to get my money’s worth before buying. Hehe! So far so, so good. The only cons so far is the battery life since I am into watching videos. I have to close all apps and adjust brightness para tipid sa power consumption. Don’t get me wrong, the battery is OK but you’d wish it had more juice capacity in it. Another cons, which may be isolated to me and a few others who had Nokia’s 808 Pureview, is the camera. It’s still a “phone cam” and still not on par with those that offer P&S-quality photos. Having said this, I am still very satisfied with what it offers. I made the right decision.

    • Sir, patanong naman kung nakakagamit ka ng ibang earphones or headphones sa unit mo. Mahina kasi at umuugong yung sound pagka-ibang earpiece ang gamit ko. yung stock earphones naman nila di kagandahan ang sound. Appreciate your feedback. Thanks.

  25. Hello everyone. Tanong ko lang if you can use other earphones or headphones with this unit? Pansin ko kasi dito sa phone ko (x1) sobrang hina at umuugong yung sound pag ibang headset ang gamit ko. Thanks.

    • Yes you can use other headphones. This is the usual case with these phones, I have experienced this issue a lot, with CM, SM and MP. Found some luck by using an old Nokia headset w/ mic (3 black bands on the plug) also working great with regular earphones or headphones, no mic (2 black bands on the plug). Try them first before buying (some shops got trial items).

  26. Some clarification about this product. Got mine last week and had some questions regarding a few things:
    – Antutu Benchmark only clocked in at 22,000+ and that’s even without anything installed yet, as in fresh out of the box. It’s a far cry from the 27,000+ shown in this reviews and from other similar reviews in the web. Could this signify a possible performance issue?
    -Packaging and the user’s manual for the phone clearly states that it is only expandable up to “32 GB” compared to the 64 GB stated in the review. Can we shed some light here?
    Don’t get me wrong, the phone has been nothing but great. Appreciate the response. :)

  27. sounds via earphone sucks. multiple crashes ng facebook :-(

  28. i just bought my SM DX1 last staurday. i have watched several review videos and sabi the wifi is located on the upper part of the phone, near the camera. pag ginagamit ko yung phone ko (wifi is open) umiinit yung upper part niya. bakit po ganun? and other concern is that the battery didn’t last for a day. bakit ganun? but the overall use of it is really good.

  29. bought one last week and i must say mabilis talaga siya pero mabilis din siya ma lowbat and un nga multiple facebook crash don’t know why nakakaasar and yung speaker na yamaha panget tunog mas ok pa speaker nung tablet ko na cm fusion which is a4tech and ung headset naku di mganda,but so far ok nmn p,i wonder kung mas mganda ung higher unit nila ung wireless chrging na octacore din

  30. btw read tons of review before buying the prod and it’s true pwede ilaban sa mga brnded tong starmobile =) pero sana matagal din lifespan nito di tulad ng mga cm parng good for 1yr lang =(

  31. Hi UNBOX….

    Planing to buy this phone… But still having a doubt.. I’ve read something about “not being able to change the default launcher” is it really true? Well its a minor thing.. I would just like to clarify if it comes with a case or a flip cover out of the box? Tnx

    Oh. One thing since you’ve mentioned that MediaTek “is” or “will” release Kitkat update.. Is it possible that this phone might get kitkat..? Hope starmobile can give us answer.. :-)

  32. hi, i just want to ask which phone is better, is it muse or this one? i was planning to buy a phone but i dont know which model would i choose. i would appreciate if you could help me on this. great reviews by the way :)

  33. Anyone here had problems connecting their X1 to a computer? Mine’s not being detected by my laptop. I don’t know what to do. Any help would be highly appreciated.

  34. same problem here, my facebook had a problem…. cant open

    • Diamon X1 performs very well and I really love this phone allot. Only one thing I observe was the blurry of the screen or some kinda shadow on it. Oh well that’s not the case since my unit is still under warranty. My major problem was #Starmobile services really terrible, slow and disappointing yet I didn’t expect this kind of a service that you are serving.

      I send them the unit for repair last October 12, 2014 and until now they haven’t repaired it, why? because they always say they are just waiting for the parts. What!!! first of all before you release a new product make sure you already have the replacement kit on your stock and no body releases any item without that. Okay, so I’m loosing my temper and would like to request a warranty extension of the unit since it’s already staying with them for “too long” and you know what they say “No sir that is not possible” -What! I can’t really imagine what kind of service you have.

      Friends, relatives, forums and blog recommendation is a highly recommended phone but once your phone is dead…GOOD LUCK!

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