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Karbonn Titanium X review

Karbonn is one of the popular names in the budget conscious Indian smartphone market. The company is trying to establish its authority in the sub-continent with its wide range of smartphones at an affordable price tag.

The Karbonn Titanium X is the latest offering from the company, which comes with a four 1.5 GHz Cortex A7 cores along with PowerVR SGX544 GPU on a MediaTek 6589T chipset.

Retail Package

The Karbonn Titanium X is packed in a standard retail box, which also holds the A/C adapter, USB cable, headset, USB-host cable and some paperwork.

Design

In terms of overall design, the Titanium X doesn’t bring much novelties, looking similar to the previous models by the company. The smartphone is built using solidly feeling plastic with an aluminum frame running around the front panel.

The build quality is quite disappointing as the device has air gaps between its bezel and back cover, which we found quite dust prone. Apart from that, the smartphone doesn’t look too fascinating, but it isn’t ugly by any standard.

On the front, we have the Full HD display along with the three capacitive home, back and menu buttons located right below it. There is a 5 megapixel front facing camera placed at the right top of the smartphone.

The power button is designed on the right side of the device, while the volume rockers are found on the left portion of the display. The USB port is design on the button of the device along with the noise cancellation microphone and we can see the 3.5mm audio jack and the SIM card tray at the top of the smartphone.

On the back is the 13 megapixel primary camera with dual LED flash. There is a secondary noise cancellation microphone just below the camera, while the speaker grille is located to the left at the bottom.

Display

Karbonn Titanium X sports a 5-inch IPS display with a resolution of 1920 X 1080 pixels. The screen is very sharp and it’s impossible to tell individual pixels apart. The color rendering and the brightness is pleasing and the viewing angles are very good without much contrast loss or color shift.

The one glass technology used in the display prevents the accumulation of the finger prints. Overall, the display is probably the best feature of the device and is something that is rather hard to find at this price point.

User Interface

The Titanium X is powered by Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and its UI stays close to the stock Android operating system. The 1.5 GHz quad-core CPU along with 1 GB of RAM helps the device to run smoothly, but the navigation becomes sluggish every now then and we guess that’s a lot to do with the fair share of software bugs the device comes with.

The smartphone has a lot of third-party applications on board, but lacks home-backed software customizations. There are a couple of applications from the company such as Karbonn Zone and Karbonn live, but none of them are too useful.

As mentioned earlier, the Karbonn Titanium X comes pre-loaded with a host of third-party applications and games like Opera Mini, UC Browser, Truecaller, WhatsApp, Bubble Bash 3, Death Racing, Fruit Devil and Modern Combat 4.

Synthetic Benchmarks

We took the Karbonn Titanium X for a spin in an attempt to stack it up against some of its competition. The Cortex A7 CPU is not exactly a king of benchmark scores, but we have seen in the past that the chipset does reasonably well.

First up was the single-core performance test with the help of the Benchmark Pi. It was surprising to see the device punch above its weight to score a healthy score of 298.


Benchmark Pi

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    166
  • Sony Xperia Z
    264
  • HTC Butterfly
    266
  • Oppo Find 5
    267
  • HTC One X+
    280
  • LG Optimus G
    285
  • HTC One mini
    293
  • Karbonn Titanium X
    298
  • Samsung Galaxy Express
    346
  • Xolo Q900
    388
  • Sony Xperia M
    400
  • Lenovo P780
    407
  • Samsung Galaxy S II Plus
    409
  • Sony Xperia L
    435
  • Gigabyte GSmart Maya M1 v2
    488
  • Samsung Galaxy S III mini
    499
  • Sony Xperia go
    543
  • HTC Desire 600 dual sim
    554
  • Samsung Galaxy Core
    578
  • HTC Desire X
    639
  • Sony Xperia E dual
    800
  • Samsung Galaxy Young
    831

The second challenge was when we aimed to test the overall performance of the smartphone with the AnTuTu benchmark test. The result reveals that the device is very much capable of carrying the flagship tag as the performance of the smartphone matches some of the far pricier offerings.

AnTuTu

Higher is better

  • HTC One
    22678
  • Sony Xperia Z
    20794
  • Karbonn Titanium X
    15397
  • Oppo Find 5
    15167
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    14518
  • Lenovo P780
    13611
  • Xolo Q900
    13292
  • Gigabyte GSmart Maya M1 v2
    13216
  • HTC Butterfly
    12631
  • HTC One mini
    11434
  • HTC Desire 600 dual sim
    11203
  • Sony Xperia M
    9902
  • Sony Xperia L
    9746
  • Nokia Lumia 620
    9140
  • Samsung Galaxy Core
    7408
  • Samsung Galaxy Xcover 2
    6650

We then had the PowerVR SGX544 GPU sweating at the Epic Citadel test. The Titanium X did quite well here and managed to come up with a respectable score.

Epic Citadel

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    59.8
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    57.1
  • HTC One
    56.4
  • HTC One mini
    56
  • Sony Xperia Z

    55.6
  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3
    55.5
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    54.7
  • Nexus 4

    53.9
  • Asus Padfone 2

    53.4
  • Sony Xperia M
    53.2
  • LG Optimus G

    52.6
  • Karbonn Titanium X

    46.2
  • Lenovo P780

    44.1
  • Samsung Galaxy S III

    41.3
  • Gigabyte GSmart Maya M1 v2
    34.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Core
    24.9

Last up was the Vallamo test, which measures the browsing performance of the smartphone. With 1,614 points, the device found itself ahead of Optimus G 2012 flagship, Optimus 4X HD and HTC Desire 600, which is impressive.

Vellamo

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia SP
    2497
  • HTC One
    2382
  • HTC One mini
    2252
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2189
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
    2060
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    2019
  • HTC Butterfly
    1866
  • Sony Xperia M
    1800
  • Sony Xperia L
    1640
  • Karbonn Titanium X
    1614
  • HTC Desire 600 dual sim
    1572
  • LG Optimus 4X HD
    1568
  • Xolo Q900
    1563
  • LG Optimus G
    1522
  • Gigabyte GSmart Maya M1 v2
    1471
  • Lenovo P780
    1452
  • Samsung Galaxy Core
    1366
  • Nexus 4
    1310
  • Samsung Galaxy Fame
    1234
  • Samsung Galaxy Young
    1072
  • Sony Xperia E dual
    1065

Camera

The camera has a very simple interface allowing you to access all the options very easily. The various shooting modes like HDR, Panorama, Face beauty, multi angle view, smile shot, best shot and EV bracket are placed in the side bar that runs on the left side of the interface.

As usual, the settings menu consists of three tabs with options like Exposure, Color effect, White balance, Anti-flicker and image properties in the first tab, while the remaining two consists to generic still and video capturing options.

We managed to take few snaps from the 13 megapixel camera, but we weren’t impressed with its image quality. The color rendering was quite accurate, but the fine detail was very limited along with its dynamic range. Unfortunately, the noise levels are also pretty high and overall we are looking at a dreadful shooter, which doesn’t make any justice to its 13 megapixel tag.

Conclusion

Karbonn Titanium X is priced at $270 and is available in several markets. The device is an interesting offering considering its high-res screen and its affordability. The MediaTek processor offers great performance, which is quite impressive.

The display is the standout feature of the device and that’s beyond any doubt. And, to be very honest, we were really surprised with the overall performance of the device.

However, the software on the Titanium X along with its 13 megapixel rear shooter is a big let-down. Karbonn has its work cut out when it comes to pushing out new firmwares to squash the existing bugs and make the overall software experience as good as the chipset allows.

All things considered, the smartphone does well to justify its sub $275 price tag. The beautiful display and the overall performance give it enough character to stand in the mid-range market.

Pros

• Excellent Display
• Performance is better than price tag suggests

Cons

• Average camera
• Buggy software

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