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- Large 3,000mAh battery offers disappointing stamina
- Charges up quickly
During our review period, we found that the phone's stamina varied quite dramatically depending on usage. On standby it lasted well, but in other instances it lost power at an alarming rate.
During the traditional TechRadar battery test – which involves running a 90-minute video with the screen brightness at maximum and the volume turned up – the Spira E3X dropped 25% of its juice, which isn't great (the Moto G4 by comparison lost just 17%), but also isn’t terrible.
However, a day of email checking, moderate web browsing, occasional game playing and the odd Pokémon hunt saw the battery level drop significantly, and the handset was gasping for its charger by bedtime.
The inclusion of fast charging mitigates the inconsistent battery life to a degree, as it allows you to quickly replenish power when you're running low.
From a completely empty battery you can get to around 75% in less than an hour, but you'll have to make sure you use the bundled charger or you'll get much slower recharge speeds.
Even so, we'd expect a 3,000mAh battery to last longer than the one in the Spira E3X.
- Great shots under ideal conditions
- Struggles in dimly-lit environments
- HDR mode is slow
There's a common trend these days for leading phones to pack camera sensors with fairly low megapixel counts, with the focus being on improving overall image quality instead – Apple, HTC and Samsung have all taken this route with recent flagships.
As such, the Spira E3X outclasses the likes of the iPhone 7 in one sense, by offering a 21.5MP Sony IMX snapper on the back, but that doesn't mean it's better for mobile photography.
If the conditions are right, then the phone is perfectly capable of capturing some amazing shots, with vibrant colour and good contrast. However, we lost count of the number of times we were cursing the slow focus time and lack of image stabilisation.
Blurriness was an issue even in shots where we felt we were holding our hands perfectly still, and when you're in a dimly-lit environment it requires the patience of a saint to get anything even approaching an acceptable image.
We wouldn't recommend using the HDR feature either, as it draws out the already-annoying focus time, which increases the likelihood of blurred images.
According to the settings menu, the camera is aided by a "laser focus" system, which is supposed to make macro shots easier.
While we were able to get some impressively detailed close-quarters photography done, the camera sometimes took an age to focus, and in low-light conditions it often refused to comply altogether.
The Spira E3X can also capture video at 1080p. There's an 8MP front-facing camera for selfies, which records footage at 640 x 480 resolution.
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