The Taiwanese company ASUS manufactures quite a few different models of ZenFone 3 smartphones, ranging from the affordable ASUS ZenFone 3 to the true king of their lineup, the ZenFone 3 Deluxe. The latter is the best you can buy under ASUS' brand: it comes with powerful hardware, an impressive build quality and many promises. When it was launched, it was also the first smartphone in the world to offer 6 GB of RAM memory. We've had the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL in tests over the last week and, after using it as my main Android smartphone, I would like to share with you my opinion about this device, in this review:
Hardware specifications and packaging
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe comes in a premium package: a stylish box made from high quality cardboard and an elegant, although rather intricate design, even when compared to other flagships. The top of the box holds only the name of the device.
If you want to see the name, details and hardware specifications of the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL you bought, you'll have to look at the stickers found on the bottom of the package.
Lift the upper lid and you'll find your brand new smartphone inside.
Open the drawer beneath the smartphone and you'll get to the power charger, the USB Type C detachable cable, the headphones and the documentation provided by ASUS with the smartphone.
With its 5.7 inch screen, the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a large smartphone. But, although you would expect it to use a QHD display, things are not quite like that. Instead, ASUS chose to equip it with a display that has the standard 1080p FHD resolution. The good thing about it is that it's a Super AMOLED display, meaning that the colors and the contrast it offers are well above the norm. And, if you worry about dust and scratches, keep in mind that the smartphone is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 4, which is great.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL draws its power from a powerful 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad-Core 820 processor running at 2.15GHz, or a 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad-Core 821 processor running at 2.4GHz, depending on the variant that you purchase. The version that we reviewed had the 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad-Core 820 processor.
Regardless of its processor, the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe offers the same graphical chip, which is an Adreno 530. In terms of memory, this smartphone can come with either 4 or 6GB of LPDDR4 RAM memory, and with 32, 64 or 256GB of built-in storage space. We tested the model that had 6GB of RAM memory and 64GB of internal storage space. Besides what you get from the start, if you want to increase your smartphone's storage capacity, you should know that you can also add a MicroSD card of up to 2TB.
One of the most impressive specs of the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe is its camera: it's a 23 megapixels PixelMaster 3.0 camera with a maximum aperture of f/2.0, built with 6-element Largan lens with sapphire lens protection. The camera can focus almost instantly in 0.03s and can track the subjects in the photo automatically, using a so called TriTech auto-focus system technology. The main camera on this smartphone is also able to do image stabilization on your photos, so that it will help remove the unwanted shaking of your hands. And, if you shoot photos in low light, you also get a Dual-LED real tone flash. If you prefer videos to still photos, you might be interested to know that the main camera is capable of 4K video recording (at 3840 x 2160 pixels and 30 frames per second), 1080p FHD at 60 or 30 frames per second and 720p HD video recording at 30fps. Also, for video recordings, the camera uses a 3-axis electronic image stabilization system. In case you're a selfie lover, this smartphone gives you a front camera that can take photos at 8 megapixels with a f/2.0 aperture and an 84˚ field of view.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a dual SIM smartphone, which means that you can use two different SIM cards at the same time. The SIM cards can be from the same mobile operator or from different operators, but only one SIM will be able to connect to high speed 3G WCDMA or 4G LTE data networks at a time. It's also important to note that the second SIM slot is also used for SD cards, so if you want to expand the storage capacity of your ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL, you will have to make do with using it in single SIM mode. In terms of wireless connectivity, it works with a network chip that offers Bluetooth 4.2 support, and is compatible with the 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac networking standards, which means that it can connect to both 2.4GHz and to 5GHz wireless networks.
Being a high-end smartphone, the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL also offers a lot of various sensors, ranging from common ones like the accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity or ambient light sensor, to the fingerprint scanner found on its back. The autonomy is drawn from a 3000 mAh non-removable battery that supports Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0 fast charging technology.
If you're looking for a small Android smartphone, you already know that the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is not for you because of its large 5.7 inch screen. If you care for details, this smartphone is 6.16 inches or 156.4 mm long, 3.05 inches or 77.4 mm wide, and 0.17~0.31 inches or 4.2~7.5 mm thick. And it weighs 6.07 ounces or 172 grams.
If you want to see all the technical specs of the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL, you should visit its official webpage, here: ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL Tech Specs.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a high-end Android smartphone and, as expected, is comes with very impressive hardware specifications.
Design and build quality
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe is a very beautiful smartphone and there's a big chance you'll fall in love with it the moment you see it. It's a thin smartphone with a unibody chassis that's made from aluminum, extremely narrow bezels and a very large screen. It's a thing of luxury, and even its colour variations are very elegant: Glacier Silver and Sand Gold.
When I first had it my hands, the feeling I got was that I was holding a simple, beautiful yet exquisitely intricate device. One aspect that contributes to this feeling even now, after a week of having it, is the fact that there's no visible antenna on it. To be honest, I didn't notice it the first time, but after reading it on ASUS' website, it's obvious: there are no gaps on the smartphone's body and that really is impressive!
Unlike its smaller brother, the ASUS ZenFone 3, the Deluxe ZS570KL model doesn't have glass all over its body. In fact, only the screen and the front bezels are protected by glass (Corning Gorilla Glass 4). The back and the sides of the phone are made from aluminum and have a nice matte surface that makes it easy to hold in your hands.
The front of the smartphone is a territory ruled by the very large 5.7 display, but it's also home to the three Android standard buttons: Back, Home and Recent apps. The icons ASUS used for them are simple, minimalist and elegant. They're also backlit, which means you'll see them even if you use your smartphone in the dark.
The volume rocker and the power button are all found on the top right side of the smartphone. They have a nice, hardy, tactile feedback that makes them pretty difficult to press by mistake.
However, one thing that isn't that great about them, or could be better, is that they are positioned too far to the top side of the smartphone, which makes them hard to reach if you're using the phone with only one hand.
The other margins of the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL are free of any buttons. The left margin is the place where you'll find the SIM tray, which you can eject by using the small metal pin from the smartphone's package. The top rim of the phone is home for a 3.5mm audio jack used for connecting headphones, and the bottom holds the USB Type C port that's used for charging and transferring data.
On the backside of the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL you'll find the camera bump, the dual-LED flash, the laser autofocus sensor and the fingerprint scanner. The latter has a rather strange form compared to what we've seen on other smartphones, because it's rectangular, but that's not an impediment when it comes to using it. We've especially liked it for being slightly sunken inside the chassis, which makes it easy to identify with your finger.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a very elegant and stylish smartphone. Although it's a very large device, it manages to wow you with its minimalist design and with the way ASUS engineered it.
The smartphone experience on the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe
One of the essential parts of having a good user experience is the quality of the screen on your smartphone. The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL has a very beautiful Super AMOLED display that offers rich and vibrant colors. It also helps that the smartphone is designed to offer a 79% screen-to-body ratio and very narrow bezels, of only 1.3mm. The only thing that could have been better is the resolution you get, which is "only" Full HD at 1920 x 1080 pixels. Don't get us wrong - the display looks great - but the "normal" these days is the Quad HD, or 2K resolution (2560 x 1440 pixels). Most flagships from various manufacturers offer such resolutions.
One other thing that can give you a positive or a negative experience on a smartphone is how fast it is in normal day to day activities. Meaning that a good smartphone should not be laggy when it responds to your commands. Fortunately, the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a very strong device in terms of processing power. During the time in which I used it as my daily driver, it never felt laggy, it never blocked, and it never restarted itself. Everything, from web browsing to running games is fast and smooth.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL is a Dual SIM smartphone, which means that you can use two different SIM cards with it and connect to two different mobile operators if that's what you want. But, you must take into consideration that only one of the SIM cards can be used for data transfers on 3G or 4G LTE connections. The other one will be limited to 2G. I have a 4G data plan and the the signal reception is pretty good in my geographical area. As such, the internet mobile connection I enjoyed during the period I've had the ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe ZS570KL was stable and fast.
The smartphone did well in phone conversations, meaning that the calls didn't interrupt randomly, the sound was crisp and clear, while the background noise was cancelled and didn't disturb my conversations.
On the other hand, the audio quality you get from the loudspeaker is not that great. The sound quality is not ruined by distortions or unwanted noises, but the maximum volume is rather low. If you want better quality and a whole different level of audio volume, you should use a good set of headphones. By the way, the ones you get in the smartphone's package are pretty good.
As far as the battery goes, for me it usually managed to last for 8 to 10 hours tops. But that's because I tend to overwork my devices, including the smartphone. I do a lot of web browsing and gaming and that takes a big toll on the battery. However, if you're going to use your smartphone lightly, it will probably last you some more time.
The ASUS ZenFone 3 Deluxe has no trouble at all when it comes to delivering a good user experience. You'll love its display, the 4G data transfer speeds and the quality of your phone calls.
Read the next page of this review to learn more about the camera experience on this smartphone, the software installed on it and the raw performance it offers in benchmarks.