The fight in budget smartphone segment is tough and every now and then we see some really impressive device enter the market and grab the attention. While this segment was earlier dominated by manufacturers like Karbonn, Micromax and Lava, the mainstream manufacturers have also entered the segment and made things hard for these manufacturers. The Lava Iris X1 is a reasonably specced budget device which competes in this segment. Not only does it offer decent set of features but has also got an attractive design. The Canvas Fire 2 by Micromax offers similar features as the Lava Iris X1 and is also priced similarly. Just like the other budget devices, it is hard to decide between these two devices. We put them against each other to find out which one is a better buy. Lets
The Lava Iris X1 has got an attractive design but that is because of how similar its design is to the iPhone 4 or 4S. If you get this, you might be mocked by your friends for getting an iPhone knockoff. Ignore the fact and it is a well-built device with a nice design. It has got metal sides giving it a nice look but making it a bit slippery. You can handle the device with one hand easily, thanks to the 9 mm thickness and 138 Gms weight. On the white device, the sensors above the display look prominent which takes away the appeal a bit. There are capacitive keys below the display which are not visible until you touch them. This might annoy you until you get used to their positions. The overall look and feel of the device is really good and you can’t really expect more from a budget device.
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Now the Micromax Canvas Fire 2 A104 follows similar design scheme with minor changes. While both the devices look very similar from the back, the front has got some major design differences. It has got dual speakers on the front, something that we are used to see on HTC devices but the speaker grilles here are slim and spread across entire width of the device. The sides are done in golden and it goes good with the overall design of the device. While it has got the same display size, the dimensions aren’t the same. It is slightly fatter and couple that with the weight of 163 Gms, this device isn’t easy to handle at all. Among the two devices, we would pick the design and built of Iris X1 over Fire 2.
This is where both the devices disappoint badly. In this segment the competition is against Moto E if not Redmi 1S. Both of them offer higher resolution and better display quality. The 4.5” Display on the Iris X1 has got a resolution of 480 x 854. This gives a pixel density of 218 ppi which is really low. The Moto comes with a 4.3 inch qHD display giving a pixel density of 256 ppi. On the Lava Iris X1, the images aren’t crisp and you will see the rough edges of small fonts due to low density. The colours aren’t very good either. Many colours are a bit off from what they should actually look like. The touch on this device isn’t very accurate either and you will notice this while trying to type fast or tap on links in a webpage. You don’t get a scratch resistant glass here so the display is prone to get scratched.
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On paper the display of Canvas Fire 2 is same. It measures 4.5 inches and has a resolution of 480 x 854 like the Iris X1. It suffers from the same problem that is the lack of sharpness. It looks hazy and you would have to zoom in again and again to read small texts on the display. The viewing angles are okay for the display and actually slightly better than the Lava. The colours are also a bit better though still not very good. The touch response is pretty good and the operations are smooth unlike the Lava Iris X1. If we are forced to pick among these two only, then it is the Micromax.
The specifications aren’t exactly very impressive in both the cases. The Lava Iris X1 comes with a Broadcom processor. The quad core processor runs at a maximum clock speed of 1.2 GHz. You get 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of internal storage. It can support memory cards up to 32 GB which is plenty. The hardware seems acceptable on paper but actually there are minor lags that you would notice while using the device. Apps tend to freeze at times and you are left with no other option but to force close them. The benchmark scores aren’t exactly very impressive but that is what you could expect from a budget device. Video playback is no good either as the device has got a poor GPU. Full HD videos won’t play but most of the semi HD videos play fine. The Lava Iris X1 has got an 8 megapixel primary camera which is really impressive at this price point. On top of that you get a dual LED flash. The auto focus of the camera is pretty quick. It manages to capture decent level of details and isn’t a bad performer even indoors.
The Micromax Canvas Fire 2 runs the popular Mediatek MT6582 chipset running a 1.3 GHz quad core processor. We have seen this hardware in many other devices and it works fine most of the times. It comes with 1 GB of RAM and 4 GB internal storage along with support for micro SD cards up to 32 GB. The performance is considerably better than the Lava Iris X1 and the benchmark scores support the point. Both the devices offer similar connectivity options and software features. The camera on Fire 2 has a resolution of 5 megapixels which is decent but not good against the Iris X1. In terms of hardware we would pick the Micromax but will go in Lava’s favour if the camera is also a factor.