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Old February 21st, 2013, 02:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Benyi Miracle One Quad-core In-Depth Review


The Benyi Miracle One (AKA Dolphin) has the hardware needed for high end Android tablets. But still, with so many more tablets currently on the market, choosing the right one involves a great amount of research deliberation, so letís take a look at what this package from Benyi has to offer.

Highlights

1.4 GHz Exynos4412 Quad-Core Processor
9.7Ē 1024◊768 IPS display
1GB LPDDR2 RAM
12,000 mAh Lithium battery. (Approximately 10 hours of use)
5MP rear camera
3MP front camera (webcam)
Stereo Speakers


Specs:

Operating System: Android 4.0.3
Model: Benyi Miracle One (Dolphin)
Display Technology: IPS capacitive touch screen
Screen Size:9.7 inch
Resolution:1024*768
CPU Manufacturer: Samsung
CPU Model: Exynos 4412 (Quad core Cortex-A9)
CPU Speed: 1.4GHz
GPU: Quad core of Mali-400MP
GPU Speed: 400MHZ-440MHZ
RAM: 1GB LPDDR2
Hard Drive Capacity: 16GB
Storage Card Support: No
Camera: 3MP+5MP Auto Focus
HDMI: No
Bluetooth: No
GPS: NO
G-Sensor: Yes
Gyroscope: Yes
Audio: Built in stereo speakers / Built in Microphone
Language: Multi-language support
Battery Type: Li-ion, 12,000mAh
Charging Voltage: 5V - 2A
Color: White plus sky blue
Item Dimensions/ W*D*H:238.5◊181◊11mm
Net Weight: 680g
Connectors
Ports: 1 x Micro USB port (with OTG support)
1 x Audio jack

Communications
Wireless Connection: WIFI 802.11 b/g/n


Retail Package


The Benyi Miracle One, along with a USB data cable, an OTG cable as well as a pair of earphones is held by a very interesting, yet very expensive-looking see-through plastic packing box, which kind of reminds me of the Apple iPod touch, only it comes gigantic.


The battery charger is packed in a smaller paper back box.



Besides, I have also received a white leather case which is a perfect fit for the tablet and piece of anti-friction screen protection cover. All of the standard fittings of the Benyi Miracle One are of relatively high quality.


Design


The Benyi Miracle One has a stunning iPad-alike design, as this tablet features a 9.7 inch screen up front, pure white bezel and almost the same size as iPad2. The only difference you would notice is probably the blue sidelines around the bezel, and the absence of the famous home key.

Above the display, a 3.0 mega-pixels front facing camera sits in the right corner ready for our video chatting needs of self-portrait.


Flipping over to its backside, you will find more differences from the iPad2. The surface of the Dolphinís backside is ABS engineering plastic, which feels very smooth, while the iPad2ís backside surface is made of magnalium alloy, which gives the device more of a frosted feeling. The Dolphin is also treated to a respectable 5.0 mega-pixels auto-focus camera, which can shoot relatively sharp images to share on Twitter and Facebook. The triple speaker gates can be found at the lower left, right near the bottom edge, this could prevent sound blocking while you put the tablet on a flat surface. You could also find Benyiís Logo and some other information about the device on the lower middle of the tabletís backside.


Just like the iPad2 and some Samsung tablets, Benyi has taken the minimalist approach, opting for just power/standby, screen rotation lock and volume buttons as the only physical controls and Micro USB port and 3.5mm audio jack as the only connectors on the device which means, somewhat disappointingly, that thereís no sign of HDMI or SD card ports.


At 680g, itís over 200g heavier than the Samsung Galaxy Tab8.9, and measures in at 11mm in thickness which as a result, makes it extremely uncomfortable to hold in one hand. Benyi has claimed that the extra thickness is for the 12,000 mAh battery, so how can I not forgive them for not making the device a little slimmer?


Whether you find the design of the Miracle One good-looking is more of a personal taste. For me, I would say I probably prefer tablets like the PIPO M8 or the Motorola XOOM which represent the essence of black technology. But I do adore the overall clean appearance of the Miracle One. As it is manufactured by a famous OEM (FOXCONN), its build quality can also be guaranteed.


Display


Weíve seen plenty of Chinese tablets utilizing IPS displays of some sort, like the Ainol Hero and the PIPO M8. As a higher-end device, the Miracle One hasnít gone beyond any of them by featuring a normal 9.7 inch 1024*768 pixels IPS display. This is still a decent choice since no android tablet with an FHD or retina display works fine enough to kick XGA screens out of the scene.


However, I would not suggest you to expect its quality to be as good as the Super IPS+ displays featured on those market-leading tablets such as ASUS Transformer Prime. Even though it has great viewing angles and color saturations like all IPS screens do, its brightness is not strong enough to support outdoor use.


The brightness of the Miracle Oneís Display is not as good as the One featured by PIPO M8
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Old February 21st, 2013, 02:12 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hardware


In terms of SoC, Benyi has chosen the impeccable Samsung Exynos 4412 quad core chipset, based on Cortex A9-frame and used 32nm workmanship. The main frequency of each core can reach 1.4GHz, and it is also powered by a quad-core Mali 400 GPU @44oMHZ, which proves to be more than adequate in my test of running some graphically intense games. 1GB of LPDDR2 ram only helps the tablet run various applications simultaneously, but also incurs lower power consumption than the DDR3 ram used in other Chinese tablets.


In terms of raw processing potential, Exynos 4412 leads the other chipsets used on android tabs by a large margin. Software optimizations and clock rates aside, increased parallelization allows this SoC to work on more data concurrently. Similar to the desktop space, adding cores doesn't turn out to have a multiplicative effect on most real-world applications. But an enhanced ability to multitask is nice, especially as resource-hungry background tasks pile up.

Here are some benchmark scores and comparison to the scores of other tablets:


Here are some screenshots of gaming on the Dolphin:




Interface


The tablet is running Miracle OS, an extensively customized operating system based on Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich.


Benyi has transplanted almost the entire iOS interface onto an Android tablet. You would easily mistake it for an Apple iPad since the tablet has no ICS status bar, which also means that the famous software controls for “Back”, “home” and “task switcher” are nowhere to be found. Benyi has smartly designed a floating software key, which imitates the famous home button on the Apple iPad, both in appearance and functionalities. When you press the key once, it exits from the current screen to the previous one, just like the back button in the status bar on other Android tablets. But when you press the soft key for over 1 second, you would go back to the main screen. And if you press the key twice in a row, the customized task switcher would come out from the button of the screen, just like the one on iOS.


Several spots along the corner of the screen are reserved for you to place the floating soft key, but I sometimes find its presence quite annoying, especially when I am playing games or watching some video clips. For me, any customization done to the stock ICS UI is unnecessary, let alone a complete change just like the Miracle One brings.


Internet and Connectivity



We’ve always been favorable with the web browsing experience on most ICS flavored tablets, but for some, the experience is marred by choppiness and sluggishness. Well folks, that’s not the case with the almighty Benyi Miracle One, as it represents what a flawless web browsing experience should be like. Not only is it able to load complex web pages very fast and accurately, it doesn’t flinch whatsoever when pages littered with heavy Flash content. All in all, it maintains its steady responsiveness and fluidity with various navigational controls to make it such a joy traversing through content heavy web pages. Seriously, I sometimes find myself getting lost in perusing a variety of pages for the simple reason that its performance is near perfect.


Connected to a Wi-Fi network, the tablet is able to establish a solid connection with very little evidence of fluctuation – and more importantly, it’s still able to connect perfectly at 10 meters away. However, the absence of Bluetooth is quite a letdown for such a high-end device.


Camera




Turning our attention to its camera interface, Benyi again manages to give it a complete iOS feeling, sporting only a large viewfinder, a front/rear camera switcher, and a photo/video taking switch. The simpleness certainly makes it easier to use, but for a tablet featuring a 5.0 Mega-pixels AF camera, I would have expected more controls. Lastly, it takes less than one second to snap an image, which is extremely fast.





Photoes taken by the rear 5.0 Mega-pixels Camera

Taking into account the kind of camera it’s packing on, there’s naturally some high expectations attached to it, since it carries something that’s beefier than most other tablets. As a whole, its quality is good enough to accept for the majority, but not great to put in in good light with the quality exhibited by some smartphones. Details are average looking, but for some odd reason, outdoor shots and indoors under florescent lighting tend to have a cooler looking color production – thus, casting a distinctive bluish/greenish hue to our photos. However, I am sorely disappointed that its quality tanks in extremely low lighting situations. Plainly, it’s diminished by its poor details, pervasive digital noise, and inability to handle dynamic range. Also, the absence of LED flash makes it impossible to take photos in a dark environment.



Photoes taken by front-facing camera

For me, the 3.0 mega-pixels front facing camera is the real plus here, serving us with optimized online video-chatting experiences, much better than what the Galaxy Tab brings.


Multimedia


Not surprisingly, the interface of the music player on the Benyi Miracle One also imitates the one on the iOS. In fact, it’s the same exact one I am familiar with as I have received an iPad2 as a gift from my company! Well, at least it’s still an attractive looking one thanks to the clean feel to it. And the triple speakers packed on the tablet produce a good amount of intensity with its output – with no evidence of crackling during my usage. Additionally, there are various equalizer settings, even manual ones too, that fine-tunes the quality for each specific genre of music.

Do you need a traveling companion that’s worthy enough to play many hours of movies or music videos on the road? Well, the Benyi Miracle One is easily the number one candidate with its gorgeous looking display and indomitable quad-core processor. With my test videos encoded in H264 1920 x 1080 or 1280 x 720 resolutions, it’s simply a joy to watch them on the Dolphin thanks to its smooth playback, realistic colors, and sharp details.
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Old February 21st, 2013, 02:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Software



Interestingly, the tablet isn’t bogged down out of the box by bloatware, and in fact, preloaded third party apps are kept to a minimum. Specifically, it’s preinstalled with only a free app market, a WPS office, a **** HD magazine reader which only offers Chinese magazines, and some Google applications (Google Maps, Google Talk and Google Play).


Battery Life



The Dolphin features three Li-Po rechargeable batteries of 4,000 mAh, which add up to an ass-kicking 12,000mAh of power, offering more than 10 hours of intense usage. During my 720P video-playback test, the Miracle One (with 30% display brightness and 50% of speaker volume) lasted 12 hours and 40 minutes, which is by far the best result I have had testing any tablet.


But here’s also another annoying issue, the tablet cannot be charged under a shutdown state, every time I plug in the charging cable, the tablet automatically boots itself. A full charge can take up to 7.5 hours with the bundled 5V-2A charger. What should also be noted here is that the tablet is charged via the Micro USB port, not the 2.5mm DC port we have seen on almost all Chinese tablets.


Verdict



The Good:

1.4 GHz Exynos4412 Quad-Core Processor
Adorable industrial design
1GB LPDDR2 RAM
12,000 mAh Lithium battery.
5MP rear camera
3MP front camera (webcam)
Stereo Speakers

The bad:

No Bluetooth
No Micro SD card slot
No HDMI
Excessively Customized user interface
Incapability of charging under a shutdown state

Unquestionably, this is the tablet to own right now if you’re in the market of buying one, and trust me, you won’t be disappointed at all. First and foremost, we have to give Benyi credit in taking the opportunity in delivering such a high-caliber tablet that’s no doubt a benchmarker in many categories.

Ushering us into the age of quad-cores, the Benyi Miracle One screams remarkably in the processing department – making it the fastest and best performing Android tablet I’ve had the prestigious opportunity of checking out. For some time now, Android had this stigma of never achieving the fluidity and responsiveness found with iOS, but this seemingly breaks them down and shows the endless possibilities of an Ice Cream Sandwich powered device. To balance things out, I am also impressed that battery life isn’t compromised in the least bit, as it’s able to surprise me with its excellent performance.

When you think about its adorable industrial design, muscle power quad-core processor, impeccable battery life, and brilliant looking IPS display, and its choice of Foxconn as the OEM, you could easily assume that it should be quite costly. However, Benyi has somehow managed to keep its cost of ownership quite affordable. The 16GB version of the tablet, along with a very gorgeous protection case and a piece of high quality anti-friction screen cover, is priced at RMB1990 ($319). I would not say it’s the cheapest quad core android tablet you can get coz it’s not, but I would say it’s the best quad-core tablet you can get under RMB 2,000 ($320.00).

Here is the score I would give this device:


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Old February 22nd, 2013, 12:03 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Not enamoured by the iOS interface but that's one very interesting device. I like how they got rid of the enforced nav bars in ICS/JB which takes up precious screen space. Would be nice to run apps in actual full screen without having install custom ROM. If this were available in retina with black bezel, I'd bite. Unfortunately, it seems like current low-cost chipsets used in a lot of China tablets aren't fast enough to drive a retina display.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 03:20 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Looks too much like an iPad, both the software and the overall design. Think if you want to get an iPad, then get an iPad.
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Old February 23rd, 2013, 07:04 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikedt View Post
Looks too much like an iPad, both the software and the overall design. Think if you want to get an iPad, then get an iPad.
We already have 4 retina display iPads in the house. Unfortunately, they don't have built-in microSD slot and while you can buy adapters to support microSD/USB flash drives, they're useless for storing app data.

However, I do prefer Android's stock Holo interface. Just wish you could hide the nav/status bar without needing to root or install custom ROM. Would be great if they release a version with Exynos 5250/Mali T604 and 2048*1536 resolution.

For most folks, though, getting an actual iPad is likely a better option particularly when you can get Apple refurbished iPad 2 16 GB for $319 and iPad 3 16GB for $379.


Scratch that. Just read the review again and no microSD slot. This is like an iPad 2 except heavier and missing some features such as bluetooth. At that price point, I don't see any reason to buy this instead of an iPad. If you can afford this, you can afford an iPad (and quite a number of 10.1" Tegra 3 Android tablets from major manufacturers).
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Old February 24th, 2013, 08:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Benyi Miracle One Quad-core In-Depth Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikedt View Post
Looks too much like an iPad, both the software and the overall design. Think if you want to get an iPad, then get an iPad.
I totally agree.
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