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[Review] DOOGEE X5 Pro - A $85 best buy

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By Corvus Corax, Senior Member on 22nd October 2015, 01:34 AM
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Doogee is a relatively new Chinese company, but has no difficulty with introducing innovations onto the mobile phone market through its products. Founded in early 2013, the company is yet to really develop a big fan base, but is quickly gathering attention with its merchandise offering excellent features in its price range. Every year smartphone market presents new models better than the year before for a lower price. This trend is also followed by small companies like Doogee, which has recently come out with its X5 Pro model.
You must be wondering what makes this model so special. Well, it offers amazing features for the price of only $85 – 5.0” display, 64-bit Quad-Core processor, 2GB RAM, 16GB of internal memory, 2 cameras, 2400mAh battery and Android 5.1 Lollipop! You are interested, aren’t you? It’s OK, so am I.


A well-recognized web site specialized in selling mobile phones, tablet computers and accessories, Pandawill, has provided a sample of the Doogee X5 Pro for testing and writing this review.

Technical specifications:
  • Processor: 1.0GHz Quad-Core Cortex-A53 (Mediatek MT6735, 64-bit)
  • Graphics chip: Mali-T720
  • Display: 5.0“ IPS LCD 1280x720 pixels (sensitive in 2 points simultaneously)
  • RAM: 2GB
  • Memory: 16GB ROM (~12GB user available) + microSD slot
  • Back Camera: 5.0Mpix (interpolated 8.0Mpix), autofocus, LED flash, video [email protected]
  • Front Camera: 2.0Mpix (interpolated 5.0Mpix)
  • Battery: 2400mAh (removable)
  • Connectivity: WiFi 802.11b/g/b, Bluetooth 4.0, microUSB, OTG, GPS with A-GPS
  • OS: Android 5.1 (Lollipop)
  • Dimensions: 145 x 82 x 40mm
  • Network: 2G – 850/900/1800/1900MHz, 3G – WCDMA 850/1900/2100MHz, 4G – FDD-LTE Bands 1/3/7/8/20
  • Other: Dual SIM, FM Radio

Package content
Doogee X5 along with its accessories comes in a compact box, the design of which is simple, but quite interesting. On the top there is a light-reflecting “X5 Pro” mark, while on the bottom you can see phone’s most important features. On one of the sides of the box, there is a scratch sticker hiding the product authenticity verification code.


Upon opening the box on the side, you can pull out the content of the box – phone, charger, USB cable and short manual. A protective foil is already on the phone, so its new owner doesn’t have to go through the trouble of applying it himself.


The charger is standard, with a generic shape and specifications of 5V 700mA. However, it would surely be better if the manufacturer had provided a charger of at least 1A to shorten the charging period.


The USB cable given with the phone could be used for phone-PC data transfer as well as for charging – it is not limited only to the charging capacity.
The short manual covers the basics of Android OS use, and thus will be useful only to the beginners in the Android world.
The 2400mAh battery is already inside the phone when the buyer gets it, but before he starts using it, he needs to remove the protective foil off of it, as is specified on the box.


The absence of stereo headphones from the package implies that the manufacturer wanted to lower the price as much as possible, which will not bother most of new users, since they will already have headphones of their liking.

Appearance
Doogee X5 Pro has a simple design and the model we received for the purpose of this test is completely black (there is also a black-and-white combination). It is considered to be a phone of average thickness (8.2mm), but you can “feel” it in the hand because of its weight of as much as 130 grams. The battery cover takes most of the phone’s frame, thus in a way protecting it in case of falling on one of its edges.


On the top side of the phone there are connecting ports – a micro USB port (for charging, as well as PC and peripheral devices connection) and a 3.5mm audio connector for headphones.


On the right side there are buttons for sound control and turning the screen on and off. They are very sturdy, well responsive and have a distinguishable click, which makes us think they will endure usage for long period of time.


Microphone and speaker openings are on the bottom side of the phone. As far as sound is concerned, it is very loud and reproduced in satisfactory quality, so the phone can be clearly heard even if it is carried in its own case.


The biggest part of the front side is occupied by a 5.0” display. Even though there was available space for the control buttons to be on the screen itself, the manufacturer decided to place the capacitive buttons (Menu, Home and Back) below the screen. This is a better option for some users, since the entire screen is available at all times, while others will be asking why the buttons aren’t on the screen, since it will additionally make the phone smaller. Unfortunately, capacitive buttons aren’t backlit, which makes them hard to see and use in the dark.




Above the screen you can see the front 2Mpix camera, proximity and light sensors, as well as the speaker opening. In-call sound quality is clear and loud, even in the middle of the sound control bar.


The battery cover is smooth to the touch, but covered in rubber-like plastic in order to prevent slipping and allowing better handling of the phone. Perfectionists will be bothered by the fact that the phone will constantly be covered in finger prints, and so they will have to wipe it with a cloth regularly.


In the upper section of the phone there is a 5Mpix camera, not far from the flash LED. In addition, under that exact spot the Doogee logo is discretely, but clearly visible.


The battery cover is firmly attached to the front of the phone, so we advise careful removal so as not to damage the cover holders, although it is our opinion that they are flexible enough not to break quite so easily.
Upon cover removal you can see the blue 2400mAh battery, above which there are 2 SIM slots (both Micro-SIM sized), as well as the slot for a microSD memory card capacity up to 32GB. In order to access these slots, it is necessary to remove the battery from its setting.


The SIM slots are numbered 1 and 2, but that in no way determines which of the cards will be the primary one, since the user himself can choose which card to use for calling, messaging, surfing the mobile Internet (4G!), etc.


The phone’s surface looks impressive even though this is a budget phone. Yes, there are small traces of plastic injection near microUSB port opening and 3.5mm audio port, but it is barely noticeable and in no way diminishes the beauty of the phone. It is a pity that X5 Pro is missing the notification LED, since it would eliminate the need to turn the screen on in order to check for any missing calls or text messages.



Display
Doogee X5 Pro comes with IPS 5.0” display with 720p resolution (1280x720 pixels). This makes it a very good choice for a screen of this diagonal, because the pixel density is high enough so that the image is as clear as it can be expected although there are phones with much higher resolution on today’s market. We have secretly feared that colors would seem washed out while the visibility angles would be narrow, but that is not the case at all in X5 Pro. Color intensity is fairly good, whilst image rendition stays the same until viewing in extremely sharp angles. The manufacturer states that the phone comes with Gorilla Glass display protection, but it remains untested in that aspect.


Screen reacts to the touch very well and it’s responsive in 2 points at the same time, that’s enough for most uses, including playing games. The only problem we noticed it’s that it reacts a bit unprecise when fingers are too close to each other, that makes a pinch-to-zoom gesture a bit difficult.


Back lighting can be very intense, which makes the displayed content visible even in direct sun.



Software
What is interesting is that Doogee X5 Pro comes with Android 5.1 (Lollipop) OS, which means the phone is adorned with both good hardware and optimized software. Software appearance and its functions do not differ excessively from Google source code, although there are certain additional phone setting functions offering further possibilities.


Android 5.1 has finally brought dual SIM native support, so manufacturers have no need to create their own solution to the “problem” of selecting SIM cards in lie with each situation. When a SIM-using app is run (Dialer, Messaging, Hangouts, etc.), notification menu displays the possibility to choose which SIM card will be used at that point. It is also possible to predetermine the use for each card, further simplifying the entire process.


It is possible to turn on certain gestures to facilitate phone use, such as flipping the phone onto the screen in order to silence ringing, answering a call by lifting the phone a bit more quickly, or simply switching to speakerphone and back by bringing the phone closer to the ear.
What is more, the phone has the option of turning on with a double display touch (Double-tap to Wake), sliding down on the screen while turned off in order to quickly run the camera, or writing on the screen to run apps like dialer, Internet browser, Play store, messenger, etc.


The “Visitor mode” solves the problem many have been dealing with since the appearance of mobile phones – denying access to certain parts of the phone. By activating this particular mode, you can hide call lists, SMS messages, pictures and disable modification of main screens on the phone. This is an excellent option to activate before lending your phone to a friend. However, in order to turn this option on and off, you need to enter your PIN.


Similar effect can be achieved by means of “AppLock” app, which does exactly what its name indicates – locks apps, and provides access upon entering the PIN.
Moreover, the proximity sensor also has certain phone management functions. By waving your hand above the sensor, you can scroll pictures, shuffle songs, take photos, change pages in launcher, unlock the phone and answer a call. As to how smart of an idea this is, we will let you decide.
More advanced users will like the built-in option of controlling app permissions (Permission Manager), which means that any app can be simply revoked the permission to dial, send messages, read location, access contacts, use camera, etc.


All in all, Doogee X5 Pro has left a favorable impression as far as OS and additional apps are concerned. Thanks to Android 5.1 OS, animations are beautiful and fluid, transition between apps is fast (for which large RAM memory can be credited, 2GB) and there wasn’t even an instance of unexplainable lag. With basic preinstalled apps installed, only 500MB RAM is occupied, thus leaving a lot of space for installing and multitasking between large numbers of apps.



Camera
As previously stated, Doogee X5 Pro on its back has a 5Mpix camera (interpolated to 8Mpix) with very limited possibilities, while on the front it carries a 2.0Mpix camera for video chats.


The 5Mpix camera has autofocus, LED flash and makes 2560x1920 pixel pictures without interpolation.
Camera sensor possibilities are quite poor. While colors are good in the daylight, it lacks detail even while taking photos with a steady hand. Photos seem good on the screen, but when zoomed to their original size, there is a visible lack of sharpness and “oil-on-canvass” effect. Photos of closer objects are satisfactory in sharpness, but most landscapes make you want to give up the sport. This is quite a shame, since the camera software has interesting options such as automatic photographing by lifting 2 fingers in the shot, automatized following of an object and taking its picture, recording “live” (making a 5-second long video with a photographing effect) and the Face beauty mode, which removes skin imperfections and makes you more pretty (the fare sex loves this option in Samsung phones).

Photo samples:








Battery Life
Doogee X5 Pro comes with a 2400mAh battery, which is enough capacity to allow the phone one-day autonomy with more intensive use. Seeing how the processor is economical and works on lower frequency, battery consumption is moderate. We have measured its autonomy by inserting 2 SIM cards into the phone (one in the 3G/4G mode and the other in the 2G mode) and running synthetic tests, making a few shorter phone calls (about 20 minutes in total), taking pictures outside for about an hour and a half (during which time mobile Internet was active), testing its speed of access to the 4G network, and then surfing the Internet using WiFi connection.


During all that, the screen was on for 4 hours and 30 minutes, while the phone was off the charger for 30 hours! We believe this to be an excellent score considering all this phone’s features.



Performance
Doogee X5 Pro is based on MediaTek MT6735 64-bit chipset which is increasingly present in lower-middle class models. MT6735 has a Quad-Core processor at 1GHz (988MHz, to be more precise), Mali-T720 graphic chip and 2GB of built-in RAM memory.


The processor is probably intentionally limited to lower frequency instead its maximum (1.3GHz) in order to provide a better battery autonomy, since it has proven to be quite economical and still powerful enough for most users’ needs. Judging by synthetic tests, MT6735 chipset at 1GHz frequency performs in the rank of Snapdragon 400 chipset and its Quad-Core processor, which is an excellent trait considering the price of X5 Pro phone.


It also has built-in USB OTG option, so it is possible to connect USB flash drive or USB mouse or keyboard directly to the phone using USB OTG adapter.


Obtaining GPS location on this phone is quick and precise, since it easily finds a large number of satellites and connects to most of them in 30 seconds. Therefore, it can definitely be used as GPS navigation with matching navigation software.


Benchmark tests results:


Conclusion
Doogee X5 Pro is a smart phone which has suddenly appeared on the market and attracted a lot of attention with its surreal hardware for a good price. Its IPS display with wide visibility angles and quality rendition will allow undisturbed use in all conditions, while its work speed will satisfy all less and moderately demanding users. If you want an affordable smartphone and you can look past a few smaller cons, there is no reason to be apprehensive – you should definitely take the X5 Pro model into consideration as best buy in the lower price range!

Pros:
  • Good quality display
  • Fast response
  • 4G LTE support
  • Powerful speaker

Cons:
  • No notification LED
  • Capacitive buttons unlit
  • No gyroscope and g-sensor

Once more, big thanks to Pandawill for providing a sample device for testing.

Author: Stevan Stevanović
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22nd October 2015, 11:53 AM |#2  
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DOOGEE X5 Pro Smartphone Unboxing & Hands-on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbfOhhMnCoM
25th October 2015, 11:51 AM |#3  
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Great review, thanks.

Could it be possible to overclock the CPU to 1.3 GHz when the device is rooted?

I saw one review (here) that had an Antutu benchmark of around 30000. It is an early review (August 30th), so perhaps it was an early demo phone that was clocked higher?
30th October 2015, 04:11 PM |#4  
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You're welcome.

I think it can't be overclocked. Not with the stock kernel, anyway. To phone runs cool, even with the maximum CPU load (about 30C), so I do think the CPU has potential to withstand OC to ~1.2GHz, but there isn't a way at the moment.
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2nd November 2015, 03:35 PM |#5  
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As I detailed in this now closed thread, I am unable to get this phone to operate at anything faster than 2G network speeds. The specs of this phone would appear to keep it out of the 4G (or even 3G) range for AT&T in the USA, and indeed, most every other USA carrier I'm aware of. Such a sadness because this is really a nice phone at such a good price.
8th November 2015, 12:27 AM |#6  
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Excellent phone
Ive had this phone for about 3 weeks now.
Its an awesome phone for the money.
Im not a fan of how branded companies charge huge profit margins like HTC and samsung.
This phone has all I need.
It has 3G and 4G LTE which work great in my country (New Zealand).
In fact the antenna is very strong compared to my old samsung.
The camera is fine for me at 5MP, the autofocus works well and ive been able to take some really nice pics, better than the ones in the review above. Closeups are excellent. If you hold down the shutter button you get something like 6 to 7 shots per second which are then saved as a progression of pics that are then viewable in gallery as a kind of gif animation with each frame been able to be used as a photo. Theres tons of features built in. I really like that no tweaking is needed out of the box.
I installed Hola launcher as I just like its style, its faster than stock launcher and organizes apps into easy folders and it has built in weather and intuitive interface that works really well with this phone.
Ive always bought phones with hardware buttons. I cant stand phones with on screen buttons. It just takes away from everything.
So much nicer having real buttons.
Im happy there is no notification LED. This used to annoy me on my samsung and my smart 4 especially at night time I dont like any flashing LEDS in my room when im sleeping.
Double tap to wake up is nice and also useful when i have it on my car bracket.
Only cons so far are that OTG doesnt seem to work currently. Im guessing the phone needs to be rooted to use that feature and as others have noted there doesnt appear to be an easy root method as yet.
its a shame it doesnt have gyro because my google cardboard isnt much use, but i guess i can still watch 3d movies with it.
Hey.. good news.. looks like KIngroot have updated their app because I just opened kingroot and it says 92 requests received and a strategy is been worked out, which is better than last week. I will try to root manually anyway today. Id really like OTG access.
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14th November 2015, 09:14 PM |#7  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awakekiwi

Only cons so far are that OTG doesnt seem to work currently. Im guessing the phone needs to be rooted to use that feature and as others have noted there doesnt appear to be an easy root method as yet.
its a shame it doesnt have gyro because my google cardboard isnt much use, but i guess i can still watch 3d movies with it.
Hey.. good news.. looks like KIngroot have updated their app because I just opened kingroot and it says 92 requests received and a strategy is been worked out, which is better than last week. I will try to root manually anyway today. Id really like OTG access.

OTG works fine for me. I'm just using a bog-standard OTG adapter and a FAT32-formatted USB thumbdrive.

I'm still looking forward to a working root though.
15th November 2015, 01:33 AM |#8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tonto87

OTG works fine for me. I'm just using a bog-standard OTG adapter and a FAT32-formatted USB thumbdrive.

I'm still looking forward to a working root though.

Ok maybe my home made OTG cable is the problem.. i just used my data cable with a female to female adaptor on the end.. mayb e that doesnt actually work?

[FIXED] used a correct OTG cable and its all working great! no need to root this phone for any reason now!
18th November 2015, 09:22 PM |#9  
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I don't know why the rooting thread has been locked, but rooting and installing TWRP is really easy:

Follow this: http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...37&postcount=9

Download TWRP here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...0&postcount=26

Flash TWRP recovery (step 3 onwards): http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...6&postcount=39

I used Rashr to flash TWRP recovery.
19th November 2015, 07:43 PM |#10  
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Woof
Doesn't work if you have already updated via wireless update.
Phone won't accept the update.zip I you've updated already.
Only via factory reset first. That's our problem.
19th November 2015, 10:24 PM |#11  
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I stick with a R5 because of rooting problems above that Version.
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