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Samsung Galaxy Note 2 Review Thread - All Reviews To be Posted Here

OP O_G

1st October 2012, 09:12 PM   |  #11  
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As much as the comments are appreciated, this is a review thread. The idea was to give prospective note 2 owners a good list of reviews to aid there decision. All of the discussion is just going to dilute this. So please i ask you, only post reviews in this thread.

I have now moved the comments thread from the original note forum. Please use that for general comments.
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2nd October 2012, 04:57 AM   |  #12  
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2nd October 2012, 04:02 PM   |  #13  
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Thumbs up First impressions mini review
I was lucky enough to be one of the first to buy the phone on the pre-launch day in London 30th September. I previously owned the Original Note and currently also have a Galaxy S3 so I was keen to compare them.

First thing I noticed was the Note II seemed less bulky but also appears to be heavier in the hand than the original. It's subjective but I also feel it looks more premium and more attractive. Some people aren't fans of the S3 styling but if like me, you are, then you'll love how the Note II is clearly the bigger brother of the S3.

The screen is vibrant and definitely brighter than original. Loss of the pentile matrix isn't that noticeable, there isn't a blue tint but I can't help feel there is a tiny hint of red instead. It's hard to tell.

Placing the S3 and Note II side by side however revealed something that made me a little disappointed. The text just isn't as sharp as the S3 and although I realise this is down to the overall resolution and on a much bigger screen, it just made me feel a little let down. It's still amazing of course and it was always going to be a challenge to beat the S3. Fortunately the Note II has many more goodies to distract you.

The S-Pen is better, being longer and now has a slight texture to the button making it easier to locate. Also shaped slightly different for easy slot loading. These are welcome changes. There's also a few neat tricks that have been introduced in what happens when you remove, insert or leave behind the pen. Some new gesture commands and clever interactions with various apps have been introduced.

I am not going to dwell on these features as they are all demonstrated in any of the online reviews you look at online. This review focuses on what my first impressions.

For the first time in a long time though I actually had to consult the manual to work out and discover the new smart features, because there are many of them! Various gesture and motions to interact, some useful others gimmicky. I found that: with the screen off and phone laying flat, you place your hand near to the screen and it glows and fades in slightly to reveal any missed notifications. This was a handy one for me. Then there's a way the phone knows you are laying on your side to view the screen so it doesn't rotate to landscape mode. It works and it's amazingly useful.

The speed of the device is highly noticeable over the original Note, understandably. It flies through any amount of screen swiping. Even with a custom launcher and hundreds of installed apps I stuck on there, it has no obvious lag at all.

Battery life is outstanding. Bearing in mind I haven't done too many recharge cycles, the battery is easily lasting all day with the screen on so much of the time and all those apps I mentioned! No issues for me there.

The camera is on a par with the S3, haven't had the pleasure of a nice day outside to test it fully. Low light shots are a slight improvement over previous incarnations.

Sound from the speaker is - at last - very very good. It's loud and has more bass and less distortion. Really am pleased this has been improved.

So for me, Samsung have done a great job with this 2nd generation. Build quality, battery life, raw power, feature rich and fully loaded. Difficult to fault and even more difficult to put down!
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2nd October 2012, 05:03 PM   |  #14  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apprentice

I was lucky enough to be one of the first to buy the phone on the pre-launch day in London 30th September. I previously owned the Original Note and currently also have a Galaxy S3 so I was keen to compare them.

First thing I noticed was the Note II seemed less bulky but also appears to be heavier in the hand than the original. It's subjective but I also feel it looks more premium and more attractive. Some people aren't fans of the S3 styling but if like me, you are, then you'll love how the Note II is clearly the bigger brother of the S3.

The screen is vibrant and definitely brighter than original. Loss of the pentile matrix isn't that noticeable, there isn't a blue tint but I can't help feel there is a tiny hint of red instead. It's hard to tell.

Placing the S3 and Note II side by side however revealed something that made me a little disappointed. The text just isn't as sharp as the S3 and although I realise this is down to the overall resolution and on a much bigger screen, it just made me feel a little let down. It's still amazing of course and it was always going to be a challenge to beat the S3. Fortunately the Note II has many more goodies to distract you.

The S-Pen is better, being longer and now has a slight texture to the button making it easier to locate. Also shaped slightly different for easy slot loading. These are welcome changes. There's also a few neat tricks that have been introduced in what happens when you remove, insert or leave behind the pen. Some new gesture commands and clever interactions with various apps have been introduced.

I am not going to dwell on these features as they are all demonstrated in any of the online reviews you look at online. This review focuses on what my first impressions.

For the first time in a long time though I actually had to consult the manual to work out and discover the new smart features, because there are many of them! Various gesture and motions to interact, some useful others gimmicky. I found that: with the screen off and phone laying flat, you place your hand near to the screen and it glows and fades in slightly to reveal any missed notifications. This was a handy one for me. Then there's a way the phone knows you are laying on your side to view the screen so it doesn't rotate to landscape mode. It works and it's amazingly useful.

The speed of the device is highly noticeable over the original Note, understandably. It flies through any amount of screen swiping. Even with a custom launcher and hundreds of installed apps I stuck on there, it has no obvious lag at all.

Battery life is outstanding. Bearing in mind I haven't done too many recharge cycles, the battery is easily lasting all day with the screen on so much of the time and all those apps I mentioned! No issues for me there.

The camera is on a par with the S3, haven't had the pleasure of a nice day outside to test it fully. Low light shots are a slight improvement over previous incarnations.

Sound from the speaker is - at last - very very good. It's loud and has more bass and less distortion. Really am pleased this has been improved.

So for me, Samsung have done a great job with this 2nd generation. Build quality, battery life, raw power, feature rich and fully loaded. Difficult to fault and even more difficult to put down!

Glad to read more confirmations of the loudspeaker volume-quality as Samsung typically has been surprisingly weak there. Is the screen significantly brighter than the S3? How are the whites? I hope the camera burst mode is better than the S3?

http://forum.xda-developers.com/show....php?t=1915487
2nd October 2012, 05:27 PM   |  #15  
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Many pictures from russian review: http://hi-tech.mail.ru/review/misc/s...100_obzor.html
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2nd October 2012, 10:21 PM   |  #16  
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An extensive review at Trusted Reviews. Scores higher than Fruitphone 5.
3rd October 2012, 08:26 AM   |  #17  
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http://www.reghardware.com/2012/10/0...id_smartphone/

Highest score i've seen, there
3rd October 2012, 07:39 PM   |  #18  
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Samsung Galaxy Note II review: Writing home

Final Words

The Samsung Galaxy Note II N7100 is one beast of a droid and a major step forward for the class it represents. The second generation of the phablet is a massive upgrade, doubling the processing power of the predecessor, and bringing a bigger, and better, screen and an ampler battery.

The slimmer waistline and narrower body improve handling a great deal, and while the Note II still isn't the easiest smartphone to wield, it's much better than the original Note. There's also the new S Pen, which is not only more comfortable to use now, but also way better integrated into the platform.

Last, but certainly not least important, the Note II has received a host of software upgrades, which take the user experience a level up. From the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean platform and its Project Butter to the Buddy screens - it's obvious that Samsung's developers spared no effort to make the new Note as good as it can possibly get.

So the second-gen phablet comes across as a mature device that's able to deliver straight out of the box and give you a really smooth ride. A 5.5" screen however is certainly not for every taste, so recommending it isn't as easy as it may seem. As usual it all depends on the type of user you are.

The way we see it, there are several groups of users that would do well to consider the Galaxy Note II as their next device of choice.
First and foremost, it's those who want a true all-in-one smartphone. The Note II is able to match everything currently on the market for resolution and processing power and then raise the bid with the S Pen and the extra large screen.

Jelly Bean is still hard to come by on the market too, so the Note II is going to use that to its advantage as well, along with the various home-baked tweaks that Samsung delivered with TouchWiz.

So if you are the type of power user, who values performance over one-handed use and have pockets deep enough (literally and figuratively), the Note II seems like a perfect match. It certainly is more expensive than the Galaxy S III and the One X, but the screen upgrade alone is enough to justify the price difference, with the S Pen coming as a bonus.

The second group Samsung is aiming the Note II at is media buffs. Once again, the huge screen and the ample battery are the key weapons in the phablet's arsenal, but it also has vast codec support (both video and audio), and the expandable memory and mass storage mode to back it up.

If you fall in this group, you'll ideally have a tablet, which seems a bit better suited to the purpose, but it would be next to impossible to carry around in a pocket. We understand that the sheer size of the Galaxy Note II can put some users off, but we find it more than reasonably portable. Also there's the price thing - a capable smartphone and a good tablet will cost more than the Note II.

So if you want to save some cash and/or the effort to carry a bag for your tablet at all times, the Note II seems like a good compromise. In that case though, we'd suggest you check it out in person before forking out the cash.

Next up are people who like sketching things up on their smartphones (designers and the likes) and those who prefer taking notes the old-fashioned way - with a pen or a stylus. Samsung has made the Note II a pretty good device for the purpose and Wacom's input is easily able to make a huge difference between the Samsung phablet and anything else there is in the smartphone market.

And, finally, upgraders - and we'll just say it again: the Samsung Galaxy Note II N7100 is a worthy upgrade of its predecessor. You will notice an improvement in just about every part of the user experience, barring perhaps the camera. However, it's also a pricey upgrade and the original Note is still a pretty solid device. In a bit of a quandary there to be honest - if you love the original Note you'll want the second gen badly. But having money to burn will definitely help.

At the end of the day, the Samsung Galaxy Note II seems to have completed all it's here to do. Samsung have solidified its lead in the phablet market, while offering enough novelties to keep those already in it interested. There's also plenty of exclusive stuff too.

We guess some people will still be less than impressed by a bigger Galaxy S III with a stylus. And we're not saying that a big screen and a stylus is exactly what makes a near perfect smartphone better. But they can certainly do wonders for the right users.
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3rd October 2012, 08:01 PM   |  #19  
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Having come ftom the original Note I have been generally impressed and agree with much that has been said in the previous comments.

My only real disappointment has been to find out that apps cannot be moved to micro SD card. I have discovered that the Note II shares this 'feature' of the S3.

Having a large collection of apps that I have been accustomed to storing on a 64GB card on my original Note, I feel somewhat limited with 16GB of internal memory. I did try to get a 32GB or 64GB variant but their availability has yet to be announced.

Of further concern is that I have read that some leading devs are not supporting some Samsung products so I don't know if there will be a solution to my storsge concerns. Maybe I will have to swap my 16GB model when the 64GB model is released.

Sent from my GT-N7100 using Tapatalk 2
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3rd October 2012, 08:18 PM   |  #20  
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Preliminary battery life review: http://www.digitalversus.com/mobile-...st-n26373.html

Quote:

Among Samsung handsets alone, the Note 2 pulverises its predecessor by practically doubling battery life! It's the same story compared with the Galaxy S3 too. In fact, the benchmark test showed 15 hrs 10 mins of feasible use time, which basically means the Note 2 can power on for two days of regular, reasonable use. Heavy users can knock about a third off that, however.


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