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LG Announces the V30 Smartphone at IFA 2017

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LG Electronics (LG) has taken the wraps off the new LG V30 smartphone at IFA 2017 in Berlin, Germany. The V30 features many mobile innovations – a F1.6 aperture camera lens, a glass Crystal Clear Lens, an OLED FullVision display, Cine Video mode for producing movie-quality videos, premium sound with advanced Hi-Fi Quad DAC and Voice Recognition.

The LG V30 also features powerful video capabilities – the main camera on the rear features an F1.6 aperture and a Crystal Clearglass lens. This, according to LG, improves the light transmittance by 4 percent, thus letting you capture more accurate colours and clearer images. The second lens in the V30 dual camera is an upgraded 13MP wide angle lens.

LG’s new Cine Video mode allows anyone to produce movies like a pro, thanks to its powerful Cine Effect and Point Zoom features. Users can now take high-quality videos enhanced by the cinematic hues of various movie genres with only a smartphone. A new feature called Point Zoom allows you to zoom in on any subject smoothly using the zoom slider, regardless of its position in the frame.

The Cine Effect, meanwhile, provides a palette of 15 presets to give videos a unique movie-like look, from romantic comedy, summer blockbuster, mystery, thriller and classic movie, among others. The LG V30 features LG-Cine Log, which supports Log Recording Files, the industry standard video format.

The camera’s Manual Mode supports a feature called Graphy. With Graphy, any shutterbug can produce quality photos simply by choosing the image and pressing the shutter. Available in Manual Mode, users can select professional images from the Graphy website or mobile app and apply the same presets such as white balance, shutter speed, aperture and ISO to photos taken with the V30.

The LG V30 comes with a large 6-inch 18:9 OLED FullVision display. The phone is just 7.3mm in thickness and weighs 158-gms. The advanced dual camera module featuring a 16MP standard angle camera and a 13MP wide angle camera is smaller than the module in the V20, resulting in the near flat rear profile of the V30.

The main standard angle camera is supported by Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS) and Hybrid Auto Focus that combines both Laser Detection Auto Focus and Phase Detection Auto Focus. The QHD+ (2880 x 1440) OLED FullVision display offers fast response time with minimal afterimages when viewing an action-packed movie or playing a game with quick movements.

Under the hood, the V30 is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor that also supports Daydream, Google’s platform for high quality, mobile VR. LG has also equipped the V30 with a Hi-Fi Quad DAC – delivering an authentic and superior acoustic experience.

According to LG, the V30 is the first smartphone to support MQA (Master Quality Authenticated) technology that allows for the streaming of high-resolution audio. MQA captures the sound of the original studio master and folds it into a small file to make high-resolution audio easy to stream.

The phone also features Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and is IP68 water and dust resistant certified. With Quick Charge 3.0, the V30 charges from empty to 50 percent in around 30 minutes. No pricing or regional availability details have been announced yet.

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Huawei Pura 70 Review: A Feature-Packed Smartphone Experience

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Huawei’s Pura 70 lineup boasts a flagship phone for every need, and the base model Pura 70 stands as a compelling option for users who prioritise camera prowess without the extravagance of the “Ultra” version.

Design and Build Quality
The Pura 70 eschews the flamboyant curves of its pricier sibling for a more traditional, yet still elegant, design. The phone boasts a flat, high-resolution display protected by Huawei’s scratch-resistant Kunlun Glass. While not as visually striking as the curved panels on some flagships, this design choice offers a more secure grip and potentially less accidental damage.

The sleek aluminium frame adds a touch of premium feel, and the back, available in a variety of glossy or matte finishes, exudes a classic smartphone aesthetic. The phone is IP68 rated, making it water and dust-resistant, ensuring it can withstand everyday spills and splashes. Overall, the Pura 70 feels solid and well-built, catering to users who value practicality and a timeless design.

Display
The Huawei Pura 70 comes packed with a 6.6-inches LTPO OLED display, that offers a resolution of 2760-by-1256 pixels. You also get 1-120 Hz adaptive high dynamic refresh rates, 1440 Hz high-frequency PWM dimming, and up to 300 Hz touch sampling rate. The pixel density is rated at 460 ppi. As mentioned earlier, the display is protected by scratch-resistant Kunlun Glass.

Camera
The Pura 70’s camera system, while not quite reaching the heights of the Ultra model, still packs a powerful punch. The main attraction is a 50MP Ultra Lighting Camera that offers an aperture of F1.4~F4.0 and support for Optical Image Stabilisation. It delivers excellent image quality with sharp details and impressive low-light performance. While lacking the massive sensor of the Ultra, the Pura 70’s offering still excels in capturing vibrant colours and clear nighttime shots, as seen in the samples below:

Accompanying the main sensor is a 13 MP Ultra-Wide Angle Camera with an F2.2 aperture for capturing expansive landscapes without sacrificing detail. A dedicated 12 MP Telephoto Camera offering an F3.4 aperture and OIS. The 13MP front-facing camera boasts autofocus and a wide field of view, catering to selfie enthusiasts and video calls.

While the camera system might not boast the same headline-grabbing specs as the Ultra, it delivers excellent photo and video quality for everyday users and mobile photography enthusiasts alike. The lack of a 1-inch sensor might be noticeable for professionals seeking the absolute best low-light performance, but for most users, the Pura 70’s camera setup will be more than sufficient.

Software
The Pura 70 runs on Huawei’s EMUI 14.2 operating system. This homegrown operating system offers a clean and user-friendly interface with smooth animations and a focus on customization. EMUI 14.2 builds on the foundations of EMUI 14, introducing more dynamic and interactive elements such as touch-responsive themes and mini-games on the lock screen. It enhances the degree of personalization and interaction you can have with the Huawei Pura 70. Huawei’s AppGallery offers most of the popular apps and their alternatives.

Specifications and Performance
The Pura 70 boasts a flagship-worthy Kirin 9000S1 octa-core processor, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of onboard storage, ensuring smooth performance for everyday tasks, multitasking, and even demanding games. This combination delivers a fast and responsive user experience. The Pura 70 delivers a smooth and lag-free experience. The onboard storage, however, cannot be expanded further.

Verdict
The Huawei Pura 70 is a compelling smartphone for users prioritising a powerful camera system in a sleek, well-built package. The 50MP main sensor, versatile ultrawide and telephoto lenses, and capable front camera deliver excellent photo and video quality for most users. The phone itself is fast and responsive, with a beautiful display and a comfortable design. The Huawei Pura 70 boasts a top-tier camera system, making it a dream come true for mobile photographers.

Price: AED 2599 (12GB+256GB variant)

Huawei Pura 70 AED 2599
  • Final Rating
3.5

Summary

The Pura 70 eschews the flamboyant curves of its pricier sibling for a more traditional, yet still elegant, design. The phone boasts a flat, high-resolution display protected by Huawei’s scratch-resistant Kunlun Glass.

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Xiaomi Intros Redmi 13 Smartphone

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Xiaomi has launched the Redmi 13, setting a new standard for entry-level smartphones. Crafted for users seeking style and substance, it boasts a sleek design, a powerful 108MP main camera, and a large AdaptiveSync display with up to 90Hz refresh rate. With a stylish glass back and 33W fast charging, the Redmi 13 exemplifies Xiaomi’s commitment to value and innovation. Redmi 13 introduces the first-ever 108MP main camera in the Redmi series, featuring 3x in-sensor zoom for exceptional detail. With the advanced Samsung ISOCELL HM6 sensor and 9-in-1 pixel binning technology, it captures clear night shots and vibrant HDR images effortlessly, empowering users to capture stunning moments with ease.

In addition to its exceptional main camera, Redmi 13 appeals to selfie lovers with its upgraded 13MP front camera and soft-light ring for natural lighting. In addition, users can enhance their photography with vintage filters and frame designs, allowing for creative expression while documenting travels or sharing experiences. Redmi 13 presents a refined glass back design, elevating the Redmi series with its elegance. Available in Midnight Black, Sandy Gold, Pearl Pink, and the captivating Ocean Blue, it caters to users seeking sophistication. At just 8.3mm slim, Redmi 13 offers a lightweight yet quality feel, along with IP53 certification for protection against wet conditions. The device seamlessly blends style, performance, and reliability, complementing users’ lifestyles effortlessly.

Featuring a spacious 6.79-inch FHD+ display with AdaptiveSync, Redmi 13 dynamically tunes its refresh rate up to 90Hz according to usage, delivering smooth performance while conserving battery. Boasting excellent colour depth and a peak brightness of 550 nits, the screen ensures vivid, clear visuals, even in sunlight.
Designed with user convenience and durability in mind, Redmi 13 comes with a Corning Gorilla Glass display for resilience against bumps and knocks of daily life, and optimization for enhanced touch recognition and control, effectively preventing accidental triggers from water droplets. Users can enjoy a comfortable viewing experience with Redmi 13, which holds triple TÜV Rheinland certifications for Low Blue Light, Flicker Free, and Circadian Friendly attributes. With DC dimming, it minimizes eye strain in low-light settings, ensuring added peace of mind.

Redmi 13’s 5030mAh battery provides all-day performance, with 23 hours of calling or 28 hours of music after just 60 minutes of charging. A five-minute charge offers two hours of calling. With 33W fast charging, it reaches full capacity in 62 minutes. Powered by Xiaomi HyperOS, Redmi 13 offers an enhanced interface with improved home screen options and notification management. Its MediaTek Helio G91-Ultra platform ensures smooth gaming and multitasking, with up to 8GB RAM and 256GB storage. Adding convenience, the Redmi 13 features a 3.5mm headphone jack, a side-mounted fingerprint reader, and Flash notifications via a rear LED light.

The Redmi 13 was launched in the UAE on June 8th and is available through all official Xiaomi sales outlets. It comes in Midnight Black, Sandy Gold, Pearl Pink, and Ocean Blue colour options. The storage variants are 6GB+128GB priced at AED 537, 8GB+128GB priced at AED 579, and 8GB+256GB priced at AED 619.

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ASUS NUC 14 Pro Review: A Compact Powerhouse?

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The ASUS NUC series has carved a niche for itself in the PC market, offering miniature powerhouses ideal for space-constrained environments or those seeking a minimalist desktop setup. The latest iteration, the NUC 14 Pro, boasts the latest Intel Core Ultra processors and promises desktop-caliber performance in a tiny footprint. But is smaller truly better in every situation? Let’s check out the NUC 14 Pro’s strengths and weaknesses, helping you decide if this pint-sized PC packs the punch you need.

Design and Build Quality
The NUC 14 Pro maintains the familiar compact design synonymous with the series. Its sleek black chassis is constructed from a lightweight yet sturdy plastic, making it both portable and unobtrusive. While some might yearn for the premium feel of metal, the plastic keeps the weight down to a mere 1.2kg, perfect for tight spaces or frequent travel.

The front panel provides easy access to two USB-A ports and a single USB-C port with Thunderbolt 4 support. The inclusion of Thunderbolt 4 is a welcome addition, opening doors to high-speed data transfer, external displays, and even powerful external graphics cards. The rear houses additional USB-A ports, two USB-C ports, two HDMI 2.1 ports, an Ethernet jack for wired connectivity, and a power port.

While the design is minimalist and functional, some users might find the lack of an SD card reader inconvenient. Additionally, the internal layout, while accessible for RAM and storage upgrades, requires some disassembly.

Performance
The NUC 14 Pro comes in various configurations, with the 12th Gen Intel Core Ultra processors ranging from the i5-1550U to the i7-1585H. In everyday tasks such as web browsing, document editing, and video streaming, the NUC 14 Pro shines. It handles these tasks with ease, delivering a smooth and responsive experience.

However, pushing the limits exposes some limitations. Content creation applications like photo editing and video rendering require more processing power. While the NUC 14 Pro can handle them, expect longer render times compared to bulkier desktops with dedicated graphics cards. The integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics are sufficient for casual gaming but struggle with demanding titles.

Upgrading the RAM and storage is a possibility, with the NUC 14 Pro supporting up to 96GB of DDR5 memory and two M.2 SSD slots. This allows for customisation based on your specific needs, but it’s worth noting that these upgrades can add to the overall cost.

Thermals and Noise
The NUC 14 Pro utilises a small internal fan to keep things cool. Under typical workloads, the fan noise is minimal and unobtrusive. However, under heavy load, the fan can become noticeably audible. While not a dealbreaker, it’s something to consider if silence is paramount in your workspace. Thermally, the NUC 14 Pro manages heat adequately. The chassis can get warm under heavy processing, but it never reaches concerning temperatures.

Connectivity and Features
As mentioned earlier, the NUC 14 Pro boasts a good selection of ports, including the versatile Thunderbolt 4 port. This allows for a plethora of connection options, from external displays and high-speed storage to docking stations and even external graphics enclosures for a performance boost.

Wi-Fi 6E ensures a fast and stable wireless connection, while Bluetooth 5.3 provides seamless pairing with wireless peripherals. The included Kensington lock slot adds a layer of security for those concerned about physical theft in public spaces. The lack of an integrated DVD drive is unsurprising given the miniaturized form factor. However, for those who still require a physical disc drive, external options are readily available.

Software and Upgradability
The NUC 14 Pro ships with Windows 11 pre-installed, allowing you to hit the ground running immediately. Bloatware is minimal, and ASUS provides its own utility for managing system updates and monitoring performance. Upgradability is a double-edged sword. While the NUC 14 Pro allows for RAM and storage upgrades, the process involves some disassembly.

Verdict
The ASUS NUC 14 Pro is a compelling option for users seeking a powerful yet miniature PC. Its sleek design, excellent port selection with Thunderbolt 4, and the option for powerful Intel Core Ultra processors make it ideal for space-constrained environments or minimalist setups.

The ASUS NUC 14 Pro succeeds in delivering desktop-calibre performance in a compact form factor. For those who prioritise a small footprint, powerful performance for everyday tasks, and excellent connectivity, the NUC 14 Pro is a strong contender, especially for those who can take advantage of the Thunderbolt 4 capabilities for further expansion.

Price: AED 2000 onwards

ASUS NUC 14 Pro AED 2000 onwards
  • Final Rating
3.5

Summary

The NUC 14 Pro comes in various configurations, with the 12th Gen Intel Core Ultra processors ranging from the i5-1550U to the i7-1585H.

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