Saturday, January 5, 2013

HOW TO SELECT A GOOD CHINESE MTK6577 PHONE PART 2

This article is an extension of my previous article here.

About 2 days ago I spotted yet another Galaxy Note 2 clone on Fastcardtech called the HDC (again?) Galaxy Note 2 MAGE. I was wondering what the hell does MAGE mean? Can it perform magic? Well, apparently the folks at Fastcardtech appear to have really bad english so the spelling is shite. Then when I looked at the web address, it said MEGA. That made more sense. You guys can head over HERE to have a look. And here is the picture on the site. Again the name is spelt wrong...LOL!

So let's get on with deciding if this MTK6577 Dual core Phone is worth buying. Using the same techniques from my previous article, we look at the screen grabs. It is a good thing Fastcardtech did all the necessary screen grabs for us to determine if this phone is worth buying or not.


From the picture above, we can tell that the Android version is really 4.1.1 Jerry Beam..oops Jelly Bean I mean. The Kernel shows 3.4.0 which is the Jelly Bean because if you see 3.0.13 it would be ICS or Ice Cream Sandwich. (By the way this only applies to MTK6575 / MTK6577 phones. Normal branded phones have all sorts of different numbers.) So Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean is correct.

The phone also shows QHD resolution which is optimal for the MTK6577 processor. If you want to choose a HD screen you will trade speed (smoothness) for resolution. You can't have both using this processor.

1GB RAM is provided and is now mainstream in MTK6577 phones. Don't buy a 512mb phone unless the price is really low and you are on a tight budget.

Memory Size is only 503mb which is very small for Apps installation space but there are some instructions on how to make this partition bigger. There is also an option in Settings / Storage for you to set app install location similar to Apps2SD which makes storage space bigger but we all know that some apps can't be installed into SD card but internal memory alone.


Next, we look at cameras. The phone is advertised to have a 12 megapixel camera. The MTK6577 is documented to be able to drive a maximum of 8 megapixels so 12 megapixel is surely not real.
The red box highlights the real camera resolution and it shows 8 megapixel and supported 12mp which is software interpolation.
On the right, the front camera is 0.3mp which is only a VGA camera but interpolated to 1.9mp. Actually, a real 8 megapixel camera is not on every phone so it is pretty good to have a real 8mp camera on this. Most other phones are advertised to have 8mp cameras but actually the cameras are 5mp interpolated to 8. Front camera of 0.3mp is sufficient for video calls with less data needing to be transferred which is a good thing. The only bad thing is you want to take a self portrait shot you are going to get a low resolution picture.

Finally I would like to say this phone has the real Galaxy Note 2 brushed metal look which makes it more Note 2 like. LED notification light is most like omitted here.

If you buy from Fastcardtech, you can change that android logo to Samsung logo. As far as I know, many other online retailers are unable to provide this service.

To conclude, the phone is priced reasonably at $185 with Free Shipping and I would give this phone the go ahead and buy stamp. Check it out here- HDC Galaxy Note 2 Mega
Update: I just ordered this phone on 18 Jan 2013 and now waiting...Youtube review coming.

77 comments:

  1. That was funny MEAG... they should start using spelling check before they post it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Greg, how do I get them to change that android logo to Samsung logo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When you check out, just ask them to put Samsung logo on the front and back of the phone. There is a small request box to put in this request.

      Delete
  3. Thanks! Now debating whether to get this 'Mega' model or the S7100!
    Are there any Galaxy S3 clones you would recommend, preferably with a 1 gb ram?

    ReplyDelete
  4. and the Ultra version too, HD screen supposedly. or the H7100, cheapest version (1gb)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Greg.
    1-Please when you see the logo in this phone, isn't there any difference with original logo ? because i have seen others clons with bad samsung logo
    2- can we root it ?
    3- what about gps please?
    4- and finally how is the wifi please (a friend with mpai n7100 = bad wifi + skype couldn't install it)?
    Thnak you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The logo on the back cover is a small aluminum plate stuck on. You can pull it out and stick the Samsung one in. The Samsung logo is quite nice.
      Sure you can root it with root and restore by bin4ry.
      I did not buy this phone so I can't tell you about the gps or WiFi. That is a risk you have to take. Generally these should be no problem as there are many versions already on the market. Early models may have defective parts or bad ROM implementation.

      Delete
  6. Thank you very much Sir, If you can email me please a picture : This hdc with samsung logo

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  7. Hey Greg... You said there is a way to make the partition bigger than 503mb...Can you explain how? Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you for your review sir.... I am also looking at this piece and how to hear your review soon.

    I hope you can share with me.. your opinion of MEGA and the most talk about S3 G9300

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Search my blog or YouTube and you will find the G9300 review. Mega is on the way to me.

      Delete
    2. Thank you sir...

      yes I had read your G9300 and I have to say it is one of to buy list.

      however with 15-20 different I feel like getting this instead ( due to the bigger screen)

      Delete
    3. Go ahead and buy it. It should be an OK phone with a bigger screen.

      Delete
    4. thank you.. I have went ahead to buy it..
      Once yours recieved do share with us how to "upgrade" what additonal things need to be install to improve/maximise the phone capability ( I know nuts of all this tech stuff )

      Greatly apprecaited!

      Delete
  9. Hi! First of all, i'm from Argentina and english it's obviously not my first language, so sorry for my bad english haha.. and great blog!

    Another thing, i'm very interested in this phone, i'm looking foward to a review from you.

    But, you say that this phone has MTK6577, but in this picture, AnTuTu says that it has MT6577 CPU Hardware!

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lfWy1i8-hXE/UOjzI_ZqxxI/AAAAAAAAAng/uXhKvUrgDsU/s1600/antutu_phone_info_JB.jpg

    It's there any difference? And it is real IPS screen? Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. MT6577 or MTK6577 is the same thing. Official name is MT6577 but everyone calls it MTK6577. you have 50% chance of it being IPS screen but it really doesn't matter because I don't look at my phone sideways (unless you play games where you need to tilt your phone). I also don't like people beside me looking at my screen.

      Delete
    2. Thanks for your reply! I'll wait for your video review to make a decition.

      Once again, thank you.

      Delete
  10. Hi! Have you recived the phone yet? I'm looking foward to watch your review.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just got it last night. Will make the video this week end.

      Delete
    2. Just got it last night. Will make the video this week end.

      Delete
  11. Hi greg, have you received the phone with the flip cover as in photos?

    ReplyDelete
  12. any "preview" review? how is it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OK, preview...
      Nice build and slim with real 9.4mm thickness. Lousy weak camera flash but quite good 8mp camera. No compass as usual. Play store included. 1gb ram and jelly bean 4.1.1 is real. Nice screen but not IPS.

      Delete
  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  14. Any news about the video review? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi Greg ,
    I'm now staying in Singapore and I just got this HDC Galaxy Note 2 Mega as well . Anyway ... I found 2 big issues with this phone
    1. I cannot root with bin4ry
    2. Cannot detect GPS AT ALL with this phone model (Try with GPS test )

    My question is
    1. Do you have these same problems ? if no , I will double check myself

    2. If yes , do you know how to fix it ? or we unlucky to accept this phone ;(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really haven't tested the GPS. As for rooting the phone, I will build a custom cwm recovery and then can root the phone easily. Will do it this weekend after my work contract finishes.

      Delete
    2. Hi Greg,

      I bought the HDC Note2 Mage aswell, although it says N7100 everywere. In system info it says model:e1921_v77_cxql and Smallband: Maui.11AMD.W12.22.SP.V15.2012/10/22.. So how can I tell it is actually the Mage.
      Anyway, the touch calibration is terrible, cannot even enter Wifi WPA2 key without using bluetouth keyboard. I did managed to find some apps to probably fix this, but it needs root. And because it's not rooted, I hope you can help me out with this!!
      Havent tested GPS btw

      Grtz for The Netherlands

      Delete
    3. I managed to play around with the mage a bit. The GPS is good. I just posted a new post with the custom recovery and root. You will need to install cwm first then use that to flash superuser to gain root access. Please check my latest post. The model number cxq1 shows that is MAGE.

      Delete
  16. Do you recommend this phone for you? Is almost the same as the right Note 2? Waiting for reviews ... :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Sorry my typo. I mean do you recommend this phone for everyone :D Is it allmost like the orginal Note II?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No it is not exact note 2 size. The 12mp camera is comparable to the 5mp camera on the G9300. Video quality is 720p using the stock camera app. Many China phones record at VGA resolution but will do 720p using a 3rd party app. The G9300 using a 3rd party app lg camera pro produces slightly better video. Actually I would recommend the HDC S7100 or the S3 clone G9300

      Delete
  18. http://www.fastcardtech.com/HDC-Galaxy-Note-2-S7100

    You mean this model? Is it worth to buy? I like to buy some good chinese phone but i dont know those pretty much. I have read some forums and your blog about those phones. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, this is a good phone. I reviewed this before selling it off and I can recommend it.

      Delete
  19. Hi Greg.will b getting a second Hdc after a Gd experience with h7100.aiming for a IPS screen instead. Any reason of recommending s7100 over mega? Paper specs seems to b similar.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Both are actually ok although I prefer the S7100. The MEGA has nice build quality and the curve on the glass at the edges, very much like the real thing and the phone is really slim at 9.4mm, except I am disappointed with the camera picture quality. The LED flash is useless as it is too weak. Video recording at 720p also losses out to the G9300. If the camera quality doesn't bother you then go for it.

      Delete
    2. Hold you new purchase... I made a cmw for the MEGA ( mage) and rooted the phone today. I modified the build.prop and the flash is powerful now. The torch is also powerful but the led on during video mode is still the same weak shit. Probably there is another command for that that I don't know about. Will check xda for more solutions. At least the camera flash is much stronger now. Keep in mind that this requires root.

      Delete
    3. Hey Greg,
      I have just purchased & received my mage.
      Great phone but really need to root it. Can you post links to the cmw & all I need to root my phone please.
      You are correct, the camera & flash is pants, but by rooting this phone you say this fixes this. I would like to do this asap, if you could please post links to what we need, we would all be very grateful.

      TiA.
      Rich...=]

      Delete
  20. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Okay thanks to the recommend. Maybe the s7100 is the right phone for me. But what are u thinking about this model with 1 Gb RAM...

    http://www.fastcardtech.com/goods-8112-HDC-Galaxy-Note-2-GT-H7100--MTK6577-Dual-Core-12GHz-54-Inch-QHD-Screen-Android-411-Phone.html?u=54665

    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Of course you need to get the 1gb ram version. 512mb for jelly bean will be slower if you want full functionality. Another reader in Singapore got the h7100 and said that it is good so I can also recommend that. Most of the prices are similar so you will not go wrong with the other.

      Delete
  22. Hi man, what do you think about this phone?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJT-ASnZGwo

    It's the Hero H7100+ , i've read somewhere that the brand "Hero", it's a second brand of ZOPO, but cheaper because it avoid taxes.

    I've been searching for like two months now for a cellphone because the one i have it's asking for retirement :P

    I have a tight 180-200USD budget, and i want to buy any clone of the galaxy note II, what would you reccomend? Because i don't wanna waist my money on some phone that in a month won't work.

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That phone on you tube is NOT the zopo clone.The shape is slightly different. The real hero phone has curved top and bottom, like s3 shape. The zp900 Leader is the HDC galaxy note 2 ex
      http://www.fastcardtech.com/goods-7802-HDC-Galaxy-Note-2-EX--MTK6577-Dual-Core-12Ghz-1G-Ram-54-inch-QHD-Android-404-Phone.html?u=54665

      The YouTube video review is in the very first post in this blog. That is the zp900 lite version with 512mb ram

      Delete
  23. Hey Greg. Please one more thing about that s7100, how about the screen? Because its not gorilla glass, how durable is it? Is it plastic?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Made of glass just like all the other phones. Non scratch resistant but I always put a screen protector regardless of gorilla glass or tampered glass or normal glass and I take care of my phones. Even gorilla glass will break if you drop it. Just Google how many broken iPhone screens are out there.

      Delete
    2. Just saw my friends cracked iPhone screen. Dropped from his bed to the floor and it still broke. Gorilla glass may be scratch resistant not not break proof.

      Delete
  24. I would like order one, but i want ask generally there chinese phones, how long lasts battery ? if its not only 12h but at least 2days
    -google play and wifi work properly ?
    -if there are any chinese apps installed could i delete them ?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Battery generally lasts like all smart phones needing to be charged at the end of every day. Usually 16 hours a day is not a problem. Everything works fine and Chinese apps can be deleted when you are rooted. Watch all my videos to find out more.

      Delete
  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. Great information! I was in Pattaya, Thailand yesterday and purchased at Tuk Com what I am sure is a clone of the Note 2. I am curious if I posted pictures of the phone and Antutu screen shots if you would be able to tell me what company made the phone, if it's ICS or JB, and if it can be rooted or custom ROM? I had my AT&T USA GN2 with me and it is a very convincing looking clone. Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Send me the antutu system info and also z-devices screenshots and I will try to get you the info you need.

      Delete
  27. Antutu System Info:

    Phone Model: GT-N7100
    Brand: samsung
    CPU Hardware: SMDK4412
    CPU Model: Quad-Core ARMv7 Processor(VFPv3, NEON)
    CPU Frequency: 200.00~1600.0 MHz
    Screen Resolution: 1280-720
    GPU vendor: ARM
    GPU renderer: Mali-400
    GPU version (OpenGL): OpenGL ES2.0
    Memory size (available/total): 15405.8 / 15421.5 MB
    RAM size (available/total): 743.9 / 998 MB
    SD card size (available/total): 15406.8 / 15421.5 MB
    Android version: 4.1.1
    Build number: ALPS.ICS2.MP.V1.3
    IMEI: 353627059175631
    Kernel: Linux version 3.0.13 (root@android)(gcc version 4.4.3 (GCC)) #3 SMP PREEMPT Sat 2 15:09:49 CST 2013

    I am unsure what you mean by "z-devices" screenshots. I am fairly new to android phones. Where do I send pictures?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I found your email and sent screenshots of Antutu and Zausan as requested. Anything else you need to help determine if this phone can be rooted and custom ROM? Thank you so much again for the assistance.

      Delete
    2. What you bought is a dual core mtk6577 clone running Android 4.0.3 ICS, 512mb RAM, total 4gb ROM with a 512mb partition for installing apps. Front camera is 0.4mp with 2mp scaling (fake 2mp cam). I can guess the back camera is 5mp. The android has been heavily modified to resemble the Note2 hardware. To root, just use 'root with restore by bin4ry'
      There are no custom ROM for this phone or for most clone phones. Cwm recovery can be ported to this phone but you need some android developer skills.

      Delete
    3. One more thing, I suspect your phone has a qhd screen (540x960) which is actually better than 720x1280 HD because of the processor limitation.

      Delete
  28. THANK YOU SO MUCH. I'm a total newbie so please forgive me for dumb questions and I thank you for your patience and answering my questions.

    1) How do I get rid of all the Chinese stuff on the phone?
    2) Is there a specific tutorial for THIS phone that I need to follow in order to root and or do other things?
    3) Can this phone be changed to Jelly Bean?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can uninstall Chinese apps after you have root by using titanium backup. Please search xda forum on root with restore by bin4ry to root your phone. And finally no you can't change it to jelly bean. You might be able to if you are an android developer and might take you several months to port.

      Delete
    2. Thanks again for your help. I can't seem to find the highest capacity SD card this phone will support. What do you think? I have found others with this phone but no one has answered any of my posts.

      Delete
    3. No one can be sure. I am sure that 16gb is supported. I am also quite sure that 32gb is supported. I think 64gb is not supported

      Delete
  29. Hi Greg,

    I've been reading up on your blog and it has been very educational! Thanks very much!
    I have my eye on this model that's on fastcardtech but I don't know if it's really value for money. The phone in question is on this page - http://www.fastcardtech.com/HDC-Galaxy-Note-2-GT-N7102
    I've never bought from them and seem to read a lot of negative comments, ie, scam, fraud, etc. Do you have any tips that I or anybody else should be aware of when purchasing from fastcardtech?

    Your advice is much appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wrote an older article about the ins and outs of buying from Fastcardtech here on this blog. Please search for it. When buying a phone, make sure you use PayPal and it is worthwhile to pay the paypal surcharge. If anything goes wrong, you and get a refund. Also buy insurance which is only $5 additional. This protects you if the phone is lost.

      Delete
    2. Your article made a few salient points so I think I can safely-ish buy from fastcardtech :)

      What do you think of the listed smartphone though? Unfortunately, I'm not that familiar with the numbers so I'm a little at sea with this.

      Again, your insight is appreciated!

      Delete
    3. The are a number of phones reviewed here so I can't recommend anything to you as I do not known your preference.

      Delete
    4. Do not buy that N7102. The ROM has been heavily modified and only have Ice cream sandwich. All other info is fake. See my reply to DT below.

      Delete
    5. Thanks for the heads up! I'm looking for a large screen phone, about 5.5 inch. I would generally use it for surfing, youtube, music playback, reading articles and ebooks and playing games (nothing too heavy, mostly puzzles with richly drawn environments).

      The way I use my smartphone, I do run several programmes/apps at the same time. Memory seems to be at a premium.

      Would you have any other recommendations from fastcardtech or the one listed below is more than sufficient?

      Your advice is as always, much appreciated!

      Delete
  30. Hi Sir,

    I ordered 2 units of mage but was told out of stock. Do you ave recommendation for close subitutue? If yes pls send me the link so that I can complete the purchase via or link.
    Thks/!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would highly recommend this. It is also known as the Star N7180
      You can use my link
      http://www.fastcardtech.com/HDC-Galaxy-Note-2-S7100?u=54665

      Delete
    2. Thank you sir...

      I was awaiting for my refund before I log the order. and it seem like they told me the mage is avaible today. Now I am in a dileama. Should I order the mage or Star N7180 AKA Note 2 S7100 ( above link)

      Thank you for your time once again.. upon your advice I will follow the links you have posted to finalise my purchase :)

      Delete
  31. Excuse me, can I flash this clone note 2 phone with Samsung firmware or with this rom: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1997606

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can't just flash other phone ROMs to your phone unless it is made for your specific phone. You will brick your phone permanently.

      Delete
    2. Oh, thank you for your warning! Almost flash my phone just now... Phew!

      Delete
  32. hi... im from singapore and i had brought a samsung note 2 n7102 which didnt came with the original pen.. n thr current pen totally dosent work at all. im planning to buy a original spen from market but wonder if it works on this model? and my multi-windows dont seems to work too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is your note 2 original Samsung or China clone?

      Delete
  33. im not so sure... i brought it from a friend who told me that its a samsung china original... theres “samsung” in the front, the back... , inside n outside n even when turned on the phone...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just buy a cheap $5 fat tip stylus and test. Even better, go to a shop and test a stylus without buying. If it works then your Original is actually Imitation. I actually don't know what is 'Samsung China original' if it doesn't
      work with the spen app then try to borrow one to test. I have the goophone i5 and you can't tell the difference from the real thing.

      Delete
    2. thanks sir. i just found out i had been cheated. -.-

      Delete
    3. Sorry about that. Expensive lesson to learn.

      Delete