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Recommendation for Smartphone-type device

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by demiro, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    I'm looking for a smartphone to use for, in priority order, playing music, taking photos, consuming media over wi-fi. Will not use it as a phone. Budget is $200 or under. I'm excluding iPhones because I want to be able to easily expand memory with a micro SD card.

    I recently picked up a refurbed Galaxy S5, which seemed OK for my needs, but was defective. I may try another one of those, but I thought I'd ask the community for recommendations.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. listers_nz

    listers_nz Mu-43 Veteran

    256
    Nov 22, 2013
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Simon
    Ha, except for the ability to expand memory, Apple made one of them, it was called an iPod touch :rofl:
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    What you're looking for doesn't really exist outside of a flagship. They tend to only put the best cameras, processors and audio codecs in the flagships... which are always phones. The phone part is an afterthought these days, the differentiators between phones are everything but the phone bit.

    I'd say buy another flagship of yesteryear. As for how far back you want to go - a lot of that depends on how good a camera you want. I have a Galaxy S5 but the camera is only just tolerable for my tastes... I'd say it would be fine if it supported RAW output but it doesn't.
     
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  4. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I agree with the 1-2 year old flagship recommendation. Just make sure it is something with regular updates, because you don't want something stuck on an old Android with security flaws. Make sure it has Android 5.0 at least.

    Some options that come to mind are the LG G3 or G Flex 2, Samsung S5, HTC One M8.

    Also, if you don't plan to activate it, you can shop phones with bad ESN or import phones with radios that don't work well in the U.S. Sometimes there is savings there, especially with bad ESN used phones.
     
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  5. If you can find a way to nudge that budget a little, I would heartily recommend the Moto G 3rd generation (2015) and go for the 2gb RAM and 16gb storage option. Check Amazon for the unlocked version. Kind of a shame not to use it as a phone though...has nice call quality. I just upgraded to this at Christmas and I'm very pleased with it. It's quick enough, screen is decent, it's not totally loaded down with crapware, and the OS recently updated itself to Android 6.0. One of the more consistently recommended phones under $300.
     
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  6. listers_nz

    listers_nz Mu-43 Veteran

    256
    Nov 22, 2013
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Simon
    Add the Sony Xperia Z series to the list. Sony has been keeping Android on those up to date (or as up to date as you seem to get on something that isn't branded Google).
     
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  7. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    That's the best you are going to find in a brand new current model phone under $200. I bought one for my daughter. But I still think you get a bit more bang for your buck with a used/refurb older high end model. Most of those have 1080p screens and fast 6 or 8 core processors vs the older 4 core and 720p screen in the Moto G. The camera on the Moto G is pretty good, though. Same one from the Nexus 6.
     
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  8. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator; Photon Wrangler

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Barry
    My Samsung Note3 is 2 years old but still performs well, and runs Android 5.0
     
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  9. Tony Rex

    Tony Rex Mu-43 Veteran

    275
    Apr 6, 2015
    Melbourne, Australia.
    Tony Rex
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  10. cdmicha

    cdmicha Mu-43 Regular

    74
    Dec 28, 2012
    Arkansas
    Chris
    Why not get a 6 or 7" android tablet?
     
  11. Ya know, I balked at those specs too. I looked at the competition...Asus Zen phone and the Sony Xperia...and just kept going back to the user reviews and those tipped the scales in favor of the Moto. Unless you put a more high end phone next to it, you'll hardly notice the screen res. And unless you're running a processing intensive game, you won't notice the difference in processors. I think one of the differences is that Motorola hasn't loaded the phone with a lot of crap. My phone couldn't be much more responsive to commands. The 2gb of RAM also contributes here and should be considered a must.
     
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  12. ccolapietro

    ccolapietro New to Mu-43

    4
    Jan 27, 2016
    My LG G3 is the best music playing phone I have ever owned. It's built in app sports hi definition audio and the DAC (digital audio converter) is top notch. It is nothing to write home about in the camera department.

    Sent from my LGLS990 using Tapatalk
     
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  13. Tony Rex

    Tony Rex Mu-43 Veteran

    275
    Apr 6, 2015
    Melbourne, Australia.
    Tony Rex
    On second thought, I have to back down on my comment above. It is on clearance for $499 (~350 USD) at retravision (Australia), which is close enough, but I need to save the ammo for the PEN-F or more lenses.

    PS: Aussies: Retravision - Electrical Appliances, Audio & Visual, Home Entertainment and more. - DMC-CM1 LUMIX CM1 Camera Phone
     

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