Zopo ZP500 Libero review

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  1. Hati

    Hati Member

    Having read all 31 pages of the "Best dual sim Android phone" thread, I bit the bullet and pulled the trigger on a Zopo ZP500, 2000 mAh battery, screen protector and car holder plus asked for the rooting/chinese app removing service (I can't be bothered to learn Android rooting :confused:). The phone arrived today and I managed to play with it for a few hours and set it up.

    To put this review in perspective, my previous smart(est) phone was an Alcatel Onetouch 918D, as I am in dire need of a dual sim phone with at least one sim working with the biggest Australian carrier's (Telstra) 3G network on 850 MHz. So the ZP500 is predominantly compared to the Alcatel, as well as HTC Wildfire, also present in my household. I have seen and used for very short periods other smart phones as well, nothing long enough though to form anything but a superficial opinion.

    The first impressions.

    Firstly the specs:

    MT6575 CPU at 1 GHz running ICS,
    4" IPS multi-touch capacitive screen @ 800*480 pixels,
    SGX531 graphics accelerator,
    4G ROM and 512M RAM,
    BT 3.0, b/g/n WiFi,
    5 MP rear camera 0.5 MP front camera,
    SD support up to 32 G,
    micro USB charge/data port.

    The phone booted in about half the time the Alcatel normally does, which I expected with the faster hardware. The screen really impressed me, to a casual iPhone observer it looks as good as the Apple device. Certainly much better than the price tag (US $170 currently) would suggest. Viewing angles are great.
    The screen was very responsive, couldn't make it lag no matter what I did with it. Even with the screen protector installed, sensitivity only dropped by about 5 to 10%.

    The shop (zopomobileshop(dot)com) rooted the phone for me and got rid of all the chinese apps that are included for their market. Play store worked as soon as I got the phone connected to my WiFi, which by the way was quick and easy. Took me longer to type in the phone's mac address into my router's access list, then the connection itself and IP acquisition.

    I got all my usual apps again and this is where the second surprise surfaced. The app installations were VERY fast, also, moving them to the SD card with App2SD was quick too.

    I have used ICS before on a tablet, so I was used to the changes from 2.3 (Gingerbread ?) present on the Alcatel. Setting up and customising the phone was easy. Due to it's origin, there was no English dictionary included, but a little browse in the Play Store got it sorted fast.

    Nice to have a phone that is not locked to a carrier, so you can easily chop and change even your basic apps, like messaging and contacts.

    Once all the setup was done, I got my Blueant Q2 and my car's BT radio paired and tested. The only issue I had was dialing from the car radio, but it was my fault as the car's older BT (and built in functionality) did not anticipate two sim cards to select from to make a call. Once I set a default sim (from the factory default of "make your choice when you dial"), the car stereo could dial the phone without issues.

    The phone's audio is nice and loud, I had to actually turn it down a couple of clicks. Will see how it performs in noisy environments.

    Over all I am very pleased with my new toy, also quite impressed with the shop mentioned above (looks like the factory's own outlet), as I asked them after the initial order if they could send me in the same package the car holder too. It was not a problem and they didn't charge extra for postage either. Communication was excellent as well.

    This is it for now, I will chime back in a few weeks once I get some use out of the phone. Thanks for reading :)

  2. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    Thanks for the review. Last night I ordered my first Android Smart phone. While I own an Android tablet, this will be my first Android smart phone: a ZP500+ (the same as your ZP500 I think, but it has the Mtk6577 CPU instead of the Mtk6575, I think). I anticipate delivery in a couple of weeks, and I am looking forward to checking out its capabilities and using it.
  3. Hati

    Hati Member

    Great, looking forward to hearing how it fares :)

    Still happy with mine, only managed to make it reboot once on its own. Battery does two days with no data usage (3G, not WiFi), over all still a great buy.
  4. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I am looking forward to its arrival. I chose this smartphone because
    (1) it was dual sim
    (2) it was quad band with Asian/European voice coverage with GSM/GPRS/EDGE 900/1800 and data with WDCMA/HSPA/HSPA+ 2100 and North American voice coverage with GSM/GPRS/EDGE 850/1900 and data with WDCMA/HSPA/HSPA+ 850 (Iat least once per year I spend time in all 3 continents)
    (3) dual core, building on ZP500 reputation by using pin compatible CPU mtk 6577

    I also ordered the higher capacity 2000 mA battery and I am hoping that the mtk6577 does not draw too much more power than mtk6575 in the very nice ZP500 that you have.

    I did find Chinese smart phones for similar price with higher specifications that also met my criteria, but I was not able to find sufficient reviews to be assured of their quality.
  5. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    One thing of interest I discovered wrt the Zopo ZP500, is in many (all ? ) respects the Hero H8000 is the same phone physically. I think thou, that the PROM may be different, as I read accounts of users taking the 'Zopo' PROM and burning it on their Hero so as to improve the behaviour/stability of the Hero.

    For example, this thread Question about Zopo and Hero | Gizchina.com and this youtube video ZOPO ZP500 VS Hero H8000 from LovePricing.com - YouTube where for the 2nd link the youtube videos illustrates the identical simularity between the Hero H9500 and the Zopo ZP500. ....

    I have no experience in this myself, this is only what I have researched. On the gizchina thread they noted Hero and Zopo share the same manufacturing plant. There was speculation that the Zopo may have slightly better quality control in its build process than the Hero ... although how that could be was not clear to me. But I note there were references to PROM interchangeability and hardware being interchanged.

    Edit: another example which notes: http://www.gizmochina.com/2012/06/23/how-to-save-money-buy-zopo-phone/

    • Hero H5500 = Zopo ZP100
    • Hero H6000 = Zopo ZP200
    • Hero H8000 = Zopo ZP500

    Edit: Another example - here is a Russian language thread on the Zippo ZP500 and Hero H8000 : http://4pda.ru/forum/index.php?showtopic=357383 .. I don't speak Russian so I use Chrome browser set to automatically translate in order to follow that thread.
  6. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    Here is another thead Zopo ZP200 VS Hero H6000 3D android phone
  7. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

  8. Hati

    Hati Member

    It's impossible to tell who copied who... At the end of the day the support I got from Zopo made it all worthwhile for me. No regrets at all.

    Can't say if the same can be said for any of the other phones sporting the same hardware.
  9. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I picked up the following in a Russian ZOPO ZP500 forum thread (using Chrome Google browser to translate, as I don't speak nor read Russian):
  10. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    The ZOP website also has some useful information here that perhaps can be used to help get more out of a ZOP ZP500: ZOPO MOBILE - forum - Guide

    For example, TIPS & TRICKS Governor CPU (translated by Chrome browser from original Italian language) :
    and another suggestion from that site:

    Fix recognition MicroSD (again translated from Italian by computer to English)
    I suspect to do the above (replacing system files) one will need root permissions (ie the phone needs to be first rooted).

    I'm just copying from the site - as I am still waiting for my phone to arrive (and have not tried the above).
  11. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I also note in the Russian ZOPO forum ZOPO thread post#685 a user suggests that instead the code should be (for entrance to the 'engineering menu'):
    I don't know what it should be myself.
  12. Hati

    Hati Member

    15963 works for mine. Need to be careful as you can access all the settings of the phone so accidental changes are not out of the question.

    With maximum volume levels distortion increases as well, I ended up setting it below maximum because of it.
  13. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    Another phone that appears almost identical (parts mostly interchangeable ? ) to the ZOPO ZP500 is the ThL V12. The main difference appears to be ThL V12 "claims" to have upgraded cameras (8Mpixel back, and 2 MPixel front) , as opposed to the ZP 500's 5 MPixel back and 0.3 MPixel front.

    I found this website on ThL : ThL Mobile Phone Store but I could not find the ThL V12 on that site !

    I note one can find:

    I did not search for reviews on this ThL. Without further research, even though it appears identical to ZOPO-500/ZOPO-500+ I would be worried about quality of build and stability of Android OS packaging on the phone.

    For the time being, given I could find a fair amount of information on the ZOPO, I am happy with having taken the approach of ordering a ZOPO, even though I note there appear to be Chinese phones that are almost identical for the construction but have different brand names (and possibly different QA/acceptance process in place).
  14. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    Further to the engineering mode code, I stumbled across the following codes in a thread for the ZP500+ in a forum.china-iphone.ru post (where I used Chrome browser to translate from Russian to English language). I assume these codes would also work (?) for the ZP500.

    • * # 15963 # * - engineering menu
    • * # 36951 # * - various tests
    • * # 36954 # * - Proximity Sensor Calibration
    • # 0 * # - factory reset
    • * # 08 # - Serial number
    I also assume they should be used with extreme caution, as a code such as 'factory reset' would frighten me a bit, in terms of possibly wiping everything off of the phone.
  15. appycamper

    appycamper Member

    about the Hero and zopo being same factory.
    from comments im leaning towards purchasing the zopo leader over the hero note2 models.

    But then I see the HDC galaxy note 2 model and the 3 look the same! are these 3 fones essentially the same?
    HDC Galaxy Note 2 5.4" QHD Screen MTK6577 Dual Core 1.2Ghz Android 4.1 Dual Sim Standby - $192.00
    ZOPO ZP900S Leader Smart Phone 5.3 Inch IPS Screen Android 4.0 MTK6577 3G GPS- Dark Blue&White - $236.00
    Hero 9300+ Smart Phone 5.3 Inch IPS Screen Android 4.1 MTK6577 3G GPS WiFi White - $188.00

    the camera in the HDC is different layout too but is the only visable difference.
    note the specs as some cameras and differs from 1gb to .512 but Im wondering is the actually build the same?
    Which model should i choose?
  16. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I don't understand the 1GB to 512MB comment.

    The site you provided has different format between phone specifications making comparison difficult. I also can not tell from that site what languages are supported on each of the phones.

    The specs you pointed to have differences in batteries ... HDC w 2800mA, ZOPO/Hero w 2300 mA. They have differences in Bluetooth: HDC w Bluetooth-4.0, ZOPO/Hero w Bluetooth-3.0.

    I know nothing of HDC as a Chinese company. Do they have a Chinese or English lanaguage web site offering support ? ZOPO have an English language website that provides support.

    If it were me I would search various forums (not just English lanaguage) using the Chrome browser (set to automatically translate to my language of choice) and try to learn more about HDC.

    My main effort in any such search would be to get an assessment of quality, which is something I can not say with my current knowledge. Note I am still waiting for my 1st Android Smartphone to arrive. Someone more knowledgeable may need to answer you.

    You may also have more success garning the right attention by posting on a thread with a subject different from "ZOPO ZP500 Libero review" as you are not asking about the ZOPO ZP500.
  17. appycamper

    appycamper Member

    oldcpu thank you for your reply.

    ya i must make a new thread maybe but since there was talk of ZOPO and HERO being the same factory, I thought id post here showing the 2 models that are the same and add in a question about the HDC same looking model also.
    comment about 1gb or 512 was just saying that i didnt care about the difference in ram spec or camera spec. I am more so trying to figure out which would be the better quality of the 3.
    With the comments i read about Zopo using Hero factory, Im confused as to which have the better quality or if they are just the exact same and sharing technology, and Zopo is just marketed as a brand name with after service.
    Like mentioned if that is the case, Zopo must surely be a better build as with better quality control and after service.

    I must try translate a few reviews so with chrome search, thanks for the tip.
    You only ordered a few days ago, so shouldnt have your Zopo for a week or more? I need a new phone asap so dont have time to wait for your review. Ill make up my mind tomorrow and post a review thread when I get mine.

    ALSO havnt read this yet as from Hatis OPost "Having read all 31 pages of the "Best dual sim Android phone" thread. must have a look at that tomorrow
  18. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I don't know the answer to that, other than to note I discovered an English ZOPO support web site, but I can find no such support English language website for Hero (although I did find a Chinese web site that might be for Hero, but I can't tell easily even with it translated via Chrome browser translation).

    A couple of forum threads (in Russian) to look at:

    Yes, it could easily be more than a week before my ZOPO shows up. And being my 1st Android phone it could take me a while before I can say anything intelligent wrt the phone's behaviour.

    Good luck !
  19. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    That appears to be some sort of hi-tech competition as opposed to a moble phone web site (albeit I could be wrong).
  20. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    On an Italian Android forum thread on the ZOPO ZP500, a user who goes by the handle 'beeryourself' created an unofficial 'guide' for the ZP500 in the Italian language : ZOPO zp500 - Forum Android Italiano

    I dragged the text of that into a translation program, fixed the format, and created an English language version here: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B-cSYUbNbqjdbDh4bmFIdW5FM3M/edit

    My phone has not arrived yet , and I have no SmartPhone experience, so I can not comment on the above 'guide' other than it appears it could be helpful.

    (Speaking of my ZOPO ZP500+, it was shipped Thursday last week :) , I have been told via email that etotalk did succeed to 'root it' for me, and I read on the DHL tracking website that the phone arrived in Leipzig Germany today. I live a 30 minute drive south of Frankfurt and I hope to obtain the phone sometime this week, after it arrives in the city where I live and after it clears customs (and I after I pay the VAT)).
  21. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    I found some more 'tidbits' on this phone on the web, some in Italian, some in English language, and one in Russian language. I used the computer to translate to English language where 'not in English' and posted the resultant compilation here:

    ... I have not tried any of these hints myself, so I can not say if they work.
  22. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    My ZOPO ZP500+ smartphone arrived yesterday. This is my first smartphone, so it will be a while before I can say much. The basic smartphone comes with:

    • ZP500+ phone
    • wall electric charger (with US electric plug connector)
    • small US -> Euro plug connector adapter
    • USB cable for phone/charger
    • 1300mA battery
    • very small manual in Chinese (no english manual)

    I purchased more than just the phone, and the complete package that I purchased was:

    • ZP500+ smartphone package (see above)
    • extra desk charger
    • extra car charger
    • screen cover
    • leather case
    • extra 3rd party 2000mA battery
    • Etotalk MOD ROM (which roots the phone, removes unnecessary chinese apps, installs multilanguage OS, and installs google play.

    The ZP500+ per the zopomoble website is a dual SIM, dual Core (MTK6577 ARMv7 Cortex-A9 Dual-core 1.0GHz), Quad Band (see above post for frequencies), Dual Camera phone. Dual camera means 5Mpixel back camera and 0.3 MPixel fronta camera. The phone has 512MB RAM and 4GB ROM. In addition to the dual SIM, the Etotalk site note it has a G-sensor, P-Sensor, L-Sensor, FM radio, Wifi, GPS, Multi-touch, Schedule Power on/off ... I can not say much about all of that yet.

    As noted, this is my first Android Smartphone, so my views are those of a beginner. I do have an Android Tablet which helps. Last week (before phone delivery) I looked at some Internet Android tutorials which helped. I also last week read up on some unofficial user guides on the phone which helped. The manual was in Chinese which did not help - but I expected that given I am buying the phone from China.

    I inserted a 32-GB microSD card (class-10) that I had purchased separately. I also inserted two SIM cards , one into each of the SIM card slots, which are clearly labelled slot-1 and slot-2 on the phone.

    The phone powered up in the German Language. Given I live in Germany that is not too suprising, but I had asked them to put English as the default in the phone, and they did not do that, so that was a minor and very brief puzzlement. My wife speaks/reads German, so she was able to quickly set the phone back to English. Once in English, it was a simple matter for myself (as an Android tablet user) to setup the phone's wifi functionality to use our house wireless.

    On the 1st use of the phone 'voice' function (callling someone) the phone screen went black and was totally unuseable. :( Fortunately I had read on the Internet that could happen, and I applied a calibration to the proximity sensor (in settings under display) per the zopomobile guide here on youtube: zopo zp500 zp500 plus setting for proximity sensor calibration-- screen off when making calls - YouTube

    After that the phone worked great for phone calls. The mic was reasonable, which was a pleasant experience, as I had read reviews stating this phone had a horrible mic. I installed Skype and was most impressed with the Video functionality of the phone for Skype video chats.

    I also installed AirDroid (for easy transfer of files back/forth to the phone) , installed a local bus/tram schedule program, and MXPlayer (so I could play more videos). And finally I configured the phone to pick up my email from a couple of my email accounts.

    I stopped at this point. I want to backup the phone's PROM (or what ever should be backed up) and I also want to ensure the phone is configured to place applications and their data on the correct location. There are many artiicles about this on the web with different solutions, and I need time to figure out which is the best, before I put too much on this phone. Hence it may be a while before I have the phone configured for my nominal use.

    I see the phone has a backup function in Android. But I also note Titium backup for ROM and data is popular and not expensive.

    If anyone has a recommendation as to the best backup app, I would be curious/interested to learn.

    But thus far ...it was a fun evening with this new phone.
  23. Hati

    Hati Member

    Full list of Zopo ROMs and other goodies here.

    A number of guides as well.

    I found the manual somewhere (can't find it now), but it's very basic and doesn't really tell you anything in addition to the obvious.
  24. Hati

    Hati Member

    Well, my luck with the Zopo 500 (single core) has run out. The phone crapped itself already, bought it in September. I can't be bothered to sort out warranty from China, so I got a Samsung Galaxy S Duos, that in September was unavailable in Oz.

    Hope other Zopo users have better luck.
  25. oldcpu

    oldcpu Active Member

    Sorry to read of your ZP500 failure. Please can you be more specific as to the failure?

    Thus far myZP500+ is working OK. I initially used it for a month in Germany and I am now using it here in Phuket Thailand. I have a German SIM and a local Thai SIM in the phone. GPS and Wireless is working well (with over a dozen different hotspots here in Phuket).

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