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Alldocube X Neo review: media playback king on a budget

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Is there already a compatible and optimized custom rom that I can install on this device?

There is but I wouldn't call it optimized. Vendor image it comes with has issues with screen locking. I don't recommend it.

Instead I recommend using Treble ROMs https://forum.xda-developers.com/project-treble/trebleenabled-device-development

Original thread I created at HardForum https://hardforum.com/threads/alldocube-x-neo.1998171/

Here's the guide for unlocking & flashing https://1drv.ms/b/s!Ajq4PAmZFSd9pfM9cSvcBG-en1sPAw?e=kFxYS1
 
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Eleusis10

New member
Aug 12, 2020
2
0
There is but I wouldn't call it optimized. Vendor image it comes with has issues with screen locking. I don't recommend it.

Instead I recommend using Treble ROMs https://forum.xda-developers.com/project-treble/trebleenabled-device-development

Original thread I created at HardForum https://hardforum.com/threads/alldocube-x-neo.1998171/

Here's the guide for unlocking & flashing https://1drv.ms/b/s!Ajq4PAmZFSd9pfM9cSvcBG-en1sPAw?e=kFxYS1


I just glanced at it and honestly I was hoping it would be simpler xd.
Correct me if I am wrong, but when installing Chinese firmware, am I not giving up the google play store? Frankly, I don't think I can give up the google play store. I know there are some repositories that eventually could replace google store like f-droid, but from my testing seems like it lacks a bit on the amount of applications.
 

ariadnejro

Senior Member
Apr 3, 2008
246
56
Xiaomi Poco F3
I just glanced at it and honestly I was hoping it would be simpler xd.

Correct me if I am wrong, but when installing Chinese firmware, am I not giving up the google play store? Frankly, I don't think I can give up the google play store. I know there are some repositories that eventually could replace google store like f-droid, but from my testing seems like it lacks a bit on the amount of applications.
The chinese firmware is only an intermediate step to get an unlockable bootloader. The goal is installing afterwards the GSI ROM of your choice where once you have installed the Gapps you will have access to the Play Store.
 
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I just glanced at it and honestly I was hoping it would be simpler xd.
Correct me if I am wrong, but when installing Chinese firmware, am I not giving up the google play store? Frankly, I don't think I can give up the google play store. I know there are some repositories that eventually could replace google store like f-droid, but from my testing seems like it lacks a bit on the amount of applications.
The chinese firmware is only an intermediate step to get an unlockable bootloader. The goal is installing afterwards the GSI ROM of your choice where once you have installed the Gapps you will have access to the Play Store.

That's the gist of it. GSI ROMs should be tested out thoroughly for each use case anyone may have. Something that I find unworkable, might be fine for someone else. Many of the GSI ROMs include gapps with some of the editions provided. Currently I can recommend CAOS & qiDroid.
 
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Rapace1

New member
Oct 26, 2020
2
1
Hello everyone! Can anyone please tell me more about using lineage os 17 on this device? does the keyboard work correctly? can i select any ROM from the Treble ROMs list?
 
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Duesentrieb83er

New member
Nov 29, 2020
1
0
Hi there,
I have an issues with this tablet...
Anyone here how can confirme? WhatsApp videocalls rotate the cam by 90°.
Maybe someone know how to solve this....any chance to get that done with a custom rom?
I have read a litle bit about the build.prop, does anyone know an argument witch can set the Cam-rotation?
I only use the frontcam for Whatsapp, so it's ok when frontcam is rotated by 90° except WhatsApp...so that it is correct in WhatsApp...
 
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toystory2000

Member
Apr 24, 2016
22
0
Dear all
I have international version. (20200715) when I select unlock bootloader , then it reboot and bootloader lock again, anything I can do to unlock bootloader ?
Thanks
 

Rapace1

New member
Oct 26, 2020
2
1
Hello guys. Can anyone help me with this problem? I have a message your device is corrupt...
And it does not boot.
 

Bastian1984

Member
Apr 9, 2015
10
0
Hello everyone! Can anyone please tell me more about using lineage os 17 on this device? does the keyboard work correctly? can i select any ROM from the Treble ROMs list?

I second that Question!
At Prime Day the alldocube was a good Deal for less 180 EUR at banggood. It is said to have the Playstore installed. So for the first some weeks, it is ok.
But in the future, I would like to update at least to Android 10 (and still have gapps).
 

modryke

Member
Mar 15, 2008
26
4
tried everything from the guide. All I could achieve was the corrupt screen.
No idea what I'm doing wrong.

Is there any way, once the tablet is rooted with the chinese rom 1216 to go back to the english rom 191105.PRO31.003_20201216-1920 and keep root?
 
Last edited:

modryke

Member
Mar 15, 2008
26
4
on mine, stock android 9, none of my usb gamepads are recognized.
My xbox controller works in Bluetooth, so does my claw tooth.
 

Occipe

New member
Oct 13, 2021
1
0
Hi,
I'm trying to compile my own kernel, based on xiaomi Sdm660 kernel source, it starts to boot, display is garbled (adb is working) and then it reboots. It would be cool if someone could push the kernel source as already done for the previous alldocube X
BR
Occip
 

AllexBast

Senior Member
Feb 15, 2013
172
110
tried everything from the guide. All I could achieve was the corrupt screen.
No idea what I'm doing wrong.

Is there any way, once the tablet is rooted with the chinese rom 1216 to go back to the english rom 191105.PRO31.003_20201216-1920 and keep root?
gsi only needs to be sewn into slot A. I launched android 11 and 12. On android 12 I can tell you how to activate gapps
 

NathanXFK

Member
Oct 18, 2021
15
2
Hi there,

i just have a simple question to the owners of this interesting tablet:

Can someone tell me if h265 10 Bit files can be decoded by hardware (HW oder HW+ mode) in MXPlayer? If someone would be so kind and check with one of the 4k 10 bit files from here Jell.y.fish

Thanks a lot in advance!
 

kuhar2638

Member
Jul 17, 2011
5
3
Nexus 7 (2013)
Hi there,

i just have a simple question to the owners of this interesting tablet:

Can someone tell me if h265 10 Bit files can be decoded by hardware (HW oder HW+ mode) in MXPlayer? If someone would be so kind and check with one of the 4k 10 bit files from here Jell.y.fish

Thanks a lot in advance!
My tablet is on stock firmware and I was able to play jellyfish-250-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv in HW+ mode without any issues. 300mbps was jerky.
 
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NathanXFK

Member
Oct 18, 2021
15
2
My tablet is on stock firmware and I was able to play jellyfish-250-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv in HW+ mode without any issues. 300mbps was jerky.
Thanks a lot for your feedback and testing, the result sounds very promising!
When playing the 300mbps file maybe the memory or micro SD card was too slow...
 

kuhar2638

Member
Jul 17, 2011
5
3
Nexus 7 (2013)
I think the same, if I slide the file few seconds back it plays fine from buffer. I tried to play 300mbps from the internal storage and from the SD card and the result was the same.
 
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  • 1
    Hi there,

    i just have a simple question to the owners of this interesting tablet:

    Can someone tell me if h265 10 Bit files can be decoded by hardware (HW oder HW+ mode) in MXPlayer? If someone would be so kind and check with one of the 4k 10 bit files from here Jell.y.fish

    Thanks a lot in advance!
    My tablet is on stock firmware and I was able to play jellyfish-250-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv in HW+ mode without any issues. 300mbps was jerky.
    1
    I think the same, if I slide the file few seconds back it plays fine from buffer. I tried to play 300mbps from the internal storage and from the SD card and the result was the same.
  • 5
    DSC04473.jpg


    The good:
    1. Nice build quality.
    2. Vibrant, clear and sharp display.
    3. Decent performance.
    4. MicroSD card support.
    5. 4G and Phone functions.

    The bad:
    1. Old processor.
    2. Big bezels.
    3. No fingerprint reader or face unlock.
    4. Sub-par battery life.

    The Alldocube X released last year enjoyed enormous success on Indiegogo. With its dazzling 10.5-inch 2K Super Amoled display, stereo speakers, and AKM AK4376A powered 3.5mm headphone jack, the X was considered by many to be a perfect choice for media consumption. Unfortunately, it was hold back by a relatively weak processor (Mediatek MT8176 SoC) and poor battery life.

    By the end of 2019, Alldocube announced its partnership with Qualcomm, the world’s leading mobile chip maker. Many were hoping that the Chinese brand could release an upgraded version of the X with a Snapdragon processor in it. And here comes the X Neo: An Android tablet with identical design and 10.5-inch Amoled display, but a new Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 AIE processor, and some other minor changes.


    Main Specs

    Operating system: Android 9.0 Pie
    Screen: 10.5-inch Super Amoled display @2560*1600px
    Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 AIE
    CPU: Octa-Core (4*Cortex [email protected] + 4*Cortex [email protected])
    GPU: Adreno 512
    RAM: 4GB LPDDR4
    ROM: 64GB eMMc 5.1 (supports expansion up to 512GB)
    Battery: 3.8V/7700mAh Li-Po battery
    Cameras: 5MP front / 8MP main
    Wi-Fi: 802.11a/b/g/n, 5GHz/2.4GHz dual-band
    Mobile networks: 4G (FDD-LTE/TD-LTE), 3G (CDMA/TD-SCDMA/WCDMA), 2G (GSM)
    Bluetooth: Bluetooth 5.0
    Ports: USB-C port, 3.5mm headphone jack, MicroSD card slot, pogo pin keyboard port.
    Buttons: Power/standby key, volume rocker
    Size: 245.9*175.4*7.2mm Weight: 491g


    Nice, but unimpressive design

    DSC04484.jpg


    Just like last year’s X, the Alldocube X Neo looks neat and elegant. The metallic rear and curved sides give the slate an air of luxury. But for a 2020 tablet, the bezels around the screen are just a little too big. Alldocube made an argument that big bezels give users enough to grip and hold the tablet to avoid accidental touches, which makes sense, but I still think people would prefer modern designs of the Apple iPad Pro and the Huawei MatePad Pro. A front-facing camera and a light sensor can be found above the display, the rest of the front looks clean, and you won’t even find any branding.

    DSC04453.jpg


    The tablet has a frosted aluminum back, which makes it feel much more premium than the price tag would suggest. Apart from Alldocube’s logo, the camera lens is the only distraction. It’s incredibly clean, simple, and stylish.

    DSC04441.jpg


    When holding horizontally, the left and right edge are each home to dual speakers, and there're also a 3.5mm headphone jack, a Type-C charging port on the left.

    DSC04445.jpg


    On the bottom side of the slate you can also find a pogo pin port, which can be connected to the official keyboard case.

    DSC04457.jpg


    The tablet supports 4G, as well as storage expansion. The SIM card tray is able to carry 2 nano SIM cards or the combination of 1 nano SIM card and a MicroSD card.

    DSC04450.jpg


    There are two physical buttons on the right edge of the slate: a power/standby key and a volume rocker.

    DSC04520.jpg


    The X Neo measures 245.9mm * 175.4mm * 7.2mm, and weighs 489g. It does not fit in our hands as well as those 8-inchers do, and you can basically forget about one-handed use, but the device didn’t burden our hands too much, either, thanks to the slim and lightweight build. As thin as it is, the X Neo still feels quite robust, even physically twisting the tablet doesn’t reveal excess movement. The overall build quality of this slate is as good as many high-end products in the market.

    One thing that does bother me is the absence of a fingerprint reader, which I loved on last year’s X. I even called Alldocube for their reason regarding the removal of this feature. Their marketing person claimed that the majority of users don’t use their tablets for online payments, so a tablet doesn’t need the same level of security as a smartphone or a laptop. I do understand their point: the absence of a fingerprint reader is not a deal breaker for most tablet users, and the brand can save the cost for more essential features such as 4G connectivity, yet I would have preferred a more convenient way to unlock the screen, instead of having to put in some PIN code or draw a certain pattern.


    Stunning Screen, average sound

    DSC04417.jpg


    The Alldocube X Neo sports a gorgeous 10.5-inch Super Amoled display made by Samsung. Resolution clocks in at 2,560 by 1,600, for 287 pixels per inch. With deep, inky blacks and rich colors, the display is really a joy to look at. Color accuracy is also excellent, and the screen is bright enough to use in any scenario.

    DSC04414.jpg


    DSC04425.jpg


    DSC04427.jpg


    DSC04440.jpg


    DSC04429.jpg


    Although the X Neo’s display uses the standard PenTile RGBW matrix, instead of the more celebrated 'PenTile Diamond Pixel' array, sharpness is still good and, while I don’t think color calibration or the screen architecture match Samsung’s latest flagship smartphones, this is still one of the best screens you’ll find in a tablet, and is definitely superior to the LCD panels used on the Huawei MatePad Pro and the Apple iPad Pro.

    DSC04504.jpg


    Not just videos and photos look great. The lightweight nature means it’s also an excellent ebook reader alternative, and great for gaming. I read for many hours using the Amazon Kindle app, and provided I changed the background color from white to a paper-like tone, it didn’t tire my eyes. The light, easy-to-hold body allows for extended play sessions when gaming, too. Asphalt 9 is fun, and it’s visually enhanced thanks to the stunning colors and screen.

    volume.jpg


    The Alldocube X Neo offers side-firing stereo speakers, which can go very loud. Unfortunately, these built-in speakers can sound a little harsh at the highest volume, and lacks the bass and soundstage produced by the Quad AKG tuned speakers found on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e. Still, they are much better than similarly priced Android slates and are definitely good enough for YouTube and Tik Tok. For audiophiles, headphones or external speakers are still very much needed for music and action films.

    Although the X Neo has a 3.5mm headphone jack, it is not powered by the AKM 4376A DAC like last year’s Alldocube X was. The tablet works well with average headphones, only when you plug in a power-hungry professional headset with higher impedance will you start to notice some differences. If you don’t even own headphones above $200, this shouldn’t even be anything to think about.


    System & UI

    UI.jpg


    The X Neo ships with stock Android 9 Pie, not the latest Android 10, and there’s customization on top. As much as we love the clean feel of stock Android, it is not optimized for a tablet screen, especially a big, 10.5-inch one.

    You won’t find anything similar to Samsung tablets’ DeX mode. The stock screen-split function works fine with most applications, but it doesn’t really give you that kind of computing experience the DeX mode offers when there are serious productivity tasks at hand.

    Unfortunately, the Android ecosystem is going towards a direction which is less and less tablet-friendly. Many of the customized tablet applications in Play Store were released years ago and haven’t been updated for a long time. As a result, most of the apps we tried on the X Neo were just phone apps blown up to fill the 10.5-inch screen, with the majority of them only supporting vertical mode. The ideal solution would be something like the Phoenix OS, which turns Android OS into a multi-window desktop style user interface, but Alldocube doesn’t seem too keen on shipping their tablets with that operating system.


    Decent performance

    benchmark.jpg


    The Alldocube X Neo is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 AIE processor, which has an octa-core CPU (4 Cores of Cortex-A72 clocked at 2.2GHz and 4 cores of Cortex-A53 clocked at 1.8GHz) and an Adreno 512 GPU. This chipset was actually released way back in 2017 and built on 14nm process, so it is relatively old, and doesn’t match the performance of the Snapdragon 675 or Kirin 810 found in many entry-level Android smartphones. But compared to the 28nm MediaTek 8176 processor in last year’s Alldocube X, it is still a solid upgrade.

    image.png


    geekbench.png


    3dmark.png


    pcmark.png


    The X Neo notched typical “Snapdragon 660” scores in many benchmark tests I threw at it, but it even bettered the Snapdragon 670 powered Samsung Galaxy S5e in some of those tests, which came as a pleasant surprise.

    drive.png


    The built-in storage is eMMc 5.1, which is not comparable to UFS storages in top smartphones, but the X did manage to get a result similar to the readings of more expensive midrange tablets such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e in terms of Sequential Read and Write speeds in the Androbench test.

    DSC04521.jpg


    In the real-world use, the Snapdragon 660 processor and 4GB RAM are actually enough to drive the tablet for the tasks it is intended for. The X Neo is smooth and responsive most of the time, I had no issues watching 4K YouTube videos in Chrome, and scrolling through my best friends’ Instagram posts at the same time. With that said, there will be some noticeable hiccups when you open too many image-heavy webpages, or have several big applications running in the background.

    PUBG.jpg


    Gaming should not be your main reason to buy a Snapdragon 660 powered tablet. With that said, the tablet can run most games installed from Play Store without issues, but in order to have a smooth visual experience, you need to use moderate settings in big titles such as Asphalt 9 and PUBG. If you insist on going for the highest level of animation and 3D effects, you should expect frameskip and serious delays.


    Superb connectivity

    DSC04465.jpg


    The X Neo supports dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0 and 4G, you can even use it to make phone calls, but you need to hear voices either through headphones or the built-in speakers, since the tablet doesn’t have an earpiece.

    With such an amazing display, more users will be tempted to store a lot of media files in their X Neo, thus the 64GB built-in storage might not suffice. Fortunately, this tablet supports storage expansion, you can insert a MicroSD card up to 512GB. Even better, the type-C port can also mount most mobile SSD drives.


    Basic cameras

    DSC04454.jpg


    There are two cameras on the X Neo, a front-facing 5MP camera and an 8MP main camera. Those cameras can be useful for video-chatting, and scanning QR code, but you won’t want to “archive your life” with them. Even in perfectly-lit conditions, most photos I took with the main camera were either over-exposed or under-exposed, and there wasn’t much life to them. In low light, the photos were simply horrible. In an era when most entry-level smartphones come with triple or quad camera setups, there is really no place for tablet photography.

    IMG-20200520-074817.jpg


    Selfie camera shot

    IMG-20200517-213104.jpg


    Main camera shot


    Subpar battery life, decent charging speed

    battery2.jpg


    The Alldocube X Neo houses a 7700mAh Li-Po battery, smaller than the X’s 8000mAh. But with a much more efficient processor, the X Neo can give me around 7-8 hours’ screen time on a full charge, while the X could only last around 6 hours.

    battery.jpg


    With display brightness and speaker volume both set at 50%, the X Neo scored 7 hours and 25 minutes in the PCMark 8 Work 2.0 Battery test, which was really not impressive compared to other midrange tablets.

    DSC04516.jpg


    charging.jpg


    This X Neo supports Qualcomm’s 18W QC3.0 quick charge. With the stock wall charger, you can fully charge the tablet’s 7700mAh battery in around 3 hours, not bad considering how big the battery is. In comparison, the 2020 Apple iPad Pro also supports 18W charging, but Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S6 and S5e only support 15W charging. The MatePad Pro is the reigning king in terms of charging speed, as it supports Huawei’s very own 40W SuperCharge, but the cheaper MatePad 10.4 doesn’t have that feature, as it also ships with an 18W charger.


    Verdict: great for media consumption

    The Alldocube X Neo isn’t designed to break any new grounds, but it is an Android tablet which gets a lot of essential things right. It has a sharp and colorful display, which makes it perfect for video streaming, web-browsing and even light gaming. The Snapdragon 660 AIE processor is old, but still offers decent performance for basic everyday tasks. 4G connectivity means the tablet won’t be limited to places with connectable Wi-Fi hotspot.

    However, the removal of the fingerprint reader is not really a smart move. Also, the Chinese brand doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to after-sale support, most of their tablets stop receiving firmware upgrades a few months after the release. The X Neo will probably never be upgraded to Android 10, let alone Android R, something you need to bear in mind before making a purchase.

    To sum it up, if media playback is your main focus, the X Neo is really an easy recommendation, in fact you won’t find anything that’s visually on par with this slate in the same price range. But if you use your tablet for more mixed purposes, there are a few other offerings you should look at before reaching into your pocket to get the X Neo.
    2
    How to unlock bootloader & root device?
    1. go into the Settings > System > Developer options menu and enable the OEM unlocking
    2.use adb command let tablet go into fastbootmode:adb reboot bootloader
    3.use fastboot command to unlock:fastboot flashing unlock
    4.about root,use magsik app to patch the origin boot.img ,and use fastboot command flash the modified boot.img:fastboot flash boot xxx.img,and at last install magisk app.
    2
    Can we update after unlocking and rooting ?

    As is the case with most Android devices that can be unlocked, the unlock persists across updates. The unlocking is of the Bootloader, which is a separate partition from System, Data, etc. When you update the System (OS), the bootloader will remain unlocked. The only exception to this would be perhaps if the OS maintainer wanted to ensure the device was always locked, they may update the bootloader with a re-lock mechanism. But this is rare, and certainly not the case with the Alldocube.
    1
    More details on working being done to root with Magisk, install TWRP, and install LineageOS can be found at this forum:

    https://hardforum.com/threads/alldocube-x-neo.1998171/
    1
    Is there already a compatible and optimized custom rom that I can install on this device?

    There is but I wouldn't call it optimized. Vendor image it comes with has issues with screen locking. I don't recommend it.

    Instead I recommend using Treble ROMs https://forum.xda-developers.com/project-treble/trebleenabled-device-development

    Original thread I created at HardForum https://hardforum.com/threads/alldocube-x-neo.1998171/

    Here's the guide for unlocking & flashing https://1drv.ms/b/s!Ajq4PAmZFSd9pfM9cSvcBG-en1sPAw?e=kFxYS1