2015 Moto X Pure Edition Review / by Denny Ryanto

First, I was a big fan of OnePlus 2. But it took too long to launch here in Indonesia (Update: it was canceled). So, I made the jump to Motorola. I've been using the Moto X Pure for almost 3 weeks and here is my review.

Hardware

Team crispy would be delighted by the 5.7in QHD LCD display.

Judge a book by it's cover. The screen is really2 sharp. It's a 5.7in IPS LCD, QHD resolution with 515PPI pixel density. You really can't distinguish individual pixel. In my opinion QHD is overkill, FullHD is good enough and it doesn't suck the life of the battery. The screen has a slight curve to it, like the LG G Flex, but not as conspicuous.

Saffiano leather goodness.

Motorola is all about personalization. When you're about to purchase the Moto X, you get to customize a lot of things in/on your phone via the Moto Maker. From face-plate, back-cover, accent color, storage capacity, custom name on boot animation, and custom laser engraving. For this phone, I chose a 64GB model with champagne accent and a saffiano leather back with custom engraving.

Big boy.

It's a big boy that has a smaller footprint than the Nexus 6, but not too overwhelming to hold with one hand. The size is comparable with the Samsung Note and iPhone 6+

The great outdoors.

Outdoor screen visibility is excellent, the IPS LCD screen is bright, but contrast is not as good as an AMOLED display. A bonus from Motorola is the included bumper casing. It's made of plastic and  has a lip in the front. So, you can put your phone facing down without making the screen touches the surface. It's a pretty neat way to show off the back cover.

Snapdragon 808 + 3GB RAM = snappy goodness

The phone comes loaded with Android 5.1.1 Lolipop right out of the box. Motorola is known to be very quick on updating its OS and they have confirmed Moto X Pure Edition will get Android 6.0 Marshmallow OTA. It offers pure Android experience with enhancements from Motorola. These are usable enhancements, such as Moto Voice; the phone will wake up when it "hears" a hot word and execute the command you said to it. You can customize the hot word to your liking, I got mine set to "OK, Jarvis" for fun. One of my favorite feature is you twist the phone to bring up the camera module without unlocking it, really useful for quick snaps. You can also do a double-chop movement while holding the phone to initiate the flash light.

It offers pure Android experience with enhancements from Motorola.

The front of the phone is very busy looking and loaded with sensors. It comes with a unique front-facing flash to complement the 5megapixel camera. So, selfie's will always look bright in dim conditions. It also comes with a dedicated IR sensors, you can wave your hand above the phone, and it lights up the screen to show you the time along with notifications. One more thing is a dual front facing stereo speakers, playing games and watching movies or listening to music is a joy, since you'll get the stereo effect where audio can move from left to right and so forth.

Champagne shower.

At the top side of the phone you can see the standard 3.5mm headphone jack along with the nano SIM card tray. With it, comes an external micro SD expansion slot that's put together in a combo layout. This can be a godsend for people who likes to keep large media files on the phone's local storage. Given the phone's ability to take a 21 megapixel still images and 4K video, it's a logical step for Motorola to give an expansion storage slot.

Faithful to keep using the XT word.

On the bottom, there's a micro USB port for charging and data transfer. Data transfer is fast. The Pure comes with a unique Motorola TurboCharging feature. You can get 8 hours of battery life in just 12minutes of plug-in. I tested it, the phone charged from 10% to 100% in an hour, which is really fast in my opinion. Most phones will fully charge up to 2-3 hour. To use this feature, you have to charge with the included proprietary Motorola TurboCharger adapter.

Metal and leather. Dat feel.

I've chose a leather back cover. It's a 100% Horween saffiano leather. Apparently this type of leather is used by Prada and most luxury brands on their leather goods. So, extra care is needed when handling the phone. I recommend getting it treated with leather cream to give it some shine and protection. And of course, minimize water and oil contact.

21 Megapixel for team crispy.

The Moto X Pure has a very impressive 21 Megapixel camera with true-tone dual LED flash which can regulate the flash color temperature to look more natural or less blueish. Bright scenes will give you plenty of details with good color balance, saturation, temperature, and adequate dynamic range.

A classic example where megapixel count doesn’t always come with good image quality.

But, upon closer inspection, the image doesn't look as good on 100% zoom though. Artefacts and aggressive noise reduction really blew it. I believe Motorola is improving this and image quality will get better in the future with software updates. A classic example where megapixel count doesn't always come with good image quality.

Custom made is Moto made.

Custom laser engraving with the Moto Maker makes your phone very personal.

Magnesium chassis.

Along with the metal frame, the ridged power/lock and volume button gets the same magnesium metal material. It's clicky and tactile, making it very satisfying to press.

Verdict

An elegant beast.

All in all, the Moto X Pure is a very solid phone and very well designed. Yes, it only packs an 808 Snapdragon CPU (the same as the new Nexus 5X) and 3GB of RAM (the same as the new Nexus 6P), but the phone is still quick and very responsive. Yes, it also doesn't come with a fingerprint sensor and a reversible USB type-C. Battery life isn't bad, but it's not great either. TurboCharging really helps a lot to get a quick juice. My average usage is around 3 hours of screen-on time. But, it is justifiable with a very reasonable price point (starting from USD399) and it comes with killer specs and stellar features such as 21 Megapixels camera, QHD screen, TurboCharging, IR hand-wave sensor, NFC, LTE-Advanced, and thousands of customizations possibilities; made me choose this over the OnePlus 2.

My next blog will feature a gallery of shots taken by The Pure. Stay tuned.