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Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Review: A phone that attempts to save everything!
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With today’s very innovative world where people keep on looking for something greater than what they presently have, tech companies like ASUS are always on the move, continuously searching for incredible things.

And though ASUS Zenfone 2 is one of the best selling smartphones and even tagged as one of the top choice smartphones last year, innovation does not stop here. A new variant has come out of the lab with a higher storage capacity amounting to 256GB and swappable rear covers in sleek silver color with geometric pattern and stylish carbon fiber.


Let’s Review!

The Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition is the smartphone that plunks desktop-grade performance in a 5.5-inch device with a 64-bit Intel Atom processor and 4GB of dual-channel DDR3 RAM. It has an LTE Category 4+ data connectivity feature for download speeds up to 250Mbit/s, and a 60ms touch-response time, it is definitely a smartphone that could live up with users who have high expectations and demands.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition

As I personally use the device, making it a primary phone for almost two weeks up to the present, I couldn’t rebuff that it exceeds my expectations, from computing power ability to camera performance – all goes up beyond what is needed and expected. #taragis.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition

Intel Inside Processor

What makes Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE impressive is that as I mentioned above, it has a desktop-grade performance as it packs a quad-core 64-bit Intel Atom Z3590 processor combined with 4GB RAM. In my Antutu benchmark test, it reaches 61,043, outstripping the result of the original Zenfone 2; though minor, the improvement could probably attributed to clock speed upgrade from 2.3GHz to 2.5GHz.

Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Intel

When it comes to gaming, I think, this is the phone’s forte; it’s definitely a gaming Zenfone. ASUS ships the Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE with Asphalt 8: Airborne game, bragging the phone’s capability in terms of extreme gaming, taragis. The pre-installed game even comes with 24,000 in-game credits.

Asus Asphalt 8

Design and Connectivity

The curvature design and the volume controls in the back are still kept, retaining the design of the original Zenfone 2, it provides secure grip, and intuitive control and convenience, you can hold the device with an exceptional comfort in your hand.

Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Cover

And because the Deluxe Special Edition hasn’t changed anything on the design’s perspective, the rear cover can easily be fitted onto the back of an original Zenfone 2 and vice versa, which means it’s that easy to convert one into the other.

Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition NFC

This is a dual-micro SIM phone that supports 4G/LTE on SIM1. Usually what I do with other 4G/3G phones is to constantly switch data usage between two SIMs, with whichever Telco Internet is faster but with Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE or with Zenfone 2 in general, you can’t use the SIM2 for any Data Connectivity, there’s no option to utilize the slot even for 3G.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition LTE

Other ports include a standard headphone jack on top, which is absolutely CTIA compliant, and a microUSB at the bottom edge.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Audio Port

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE MicroUSB Port

In the software department, the phone runs Android 5.0 Lollipop with the company’s ZenUI skin on top. Asus has also added some new software features such as ZenMotion, which activates certain functions using swipe gestures, and SnapView, which allows users to create separate user profiles for public and secured, uses as well as Kids Mode.The phone also comes with special theme with black and red accent complementing with the body color of the device.


The phone’s display has a full HD resolution, squeezing down 1920×1080 resolution in a 5.5-inch display. At 1080p with a pixel density of 403 ppi, it’s a gorgeous screen that ranks among the very best I’ve seen on a smartphone. It also earned an excellent score in our tests for readability in bright sunlight.


The screen resolution is of best quality. It’s clear, bright and vibrant. There’s a 70.8% screen-to-body ratio and is topped with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 for protection coating.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE Gorilla Glass 3

What you will do with the 256GB Storage?

What makes this Special Edition different on top of the inbuilt 128GB internal storage, there’s a supplementary 128GB class 10 microSD card.


It’s actually big, or I mean it’s huge storage for a smartphone. And remember, buying a new ASUS Zenfone grants you 5GB lifetime webstorage plus another 100GB Google Drive cloud storage that you can use for free in 2 years. All in all, you’ll be getting 361GB storage, woah, taragis! What yah going to do? Well, Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition is a camera and gaming phone, if you’re really into it, you won’t be worrying any extra space for your game apps, videos and pictures. It’s download and save ‘til you drop.


Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE does a lot of stuff from a regular phone to a multifunctional device. As a video and a photo enthusiast, the device suits well with my personality. The device’s 13MP PixelMaster camera with its f/2.0-aperture lens captures real life color photos with zero shutter lag. It also features dual-LED Real Tone, which creates the most natural illumination for indoor shots.


And who wouldn’t want this, the Zenfone’s Beautification mode – one of the best camera features. The technology makes you or your subjects even better looking, it’s just like having a built in camera 360, you can adjust or balance facial features, soften complexions and remove skin blemishes, producing photos that is almost flawless.

I brought the Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE in my recent trip in one of the beaches in Aurora – La Sunshine Beach Resort, a 1.5 hours mountain drive from Baler. I’ll be sharing some of my personal photos here:

Front Cam

Rear Cam

Another thing that’s good with it is the “Low Light mode” which employs pixel-merging technology to capture up to 400%-brighter photos at night or in low-light scenes, without the need for a flash.

What I am missing with this phone is a special piece from Zenfone Selfie – the 13MP front cam with Flash, the 5MP available in Zenfone 2 Deluxe SE though fair enough as a standard feature is a downer for selfie enthusiasts, the reason I can’t let go of my Zenfone Selfie. Well, sometimes, we can’t combine best of both worlds.


All seems great with this device; however, battery life falls a bit short for me. With 3,000mAh battery, it performs a fair show for just nearly whole day with WiFi permanently on and automatic display brightness, but if you’re going for a full blown 3G or LTE data connectivity, the phone won’t see primetime news. But of course, it diverges on usage, am a heavy user with 3 emails syncing every 15 minutes, FB messenger running the whole time, synced smart watch,etc. Even so, for a normal user, it will keep you stay up for about a day until evening while using it as a regular phone.


If you’re traveling or will be out in the field, just bring an extra powerbank, a handy one like ZenPower will complement well with the Zenfone.


ASUS Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition with a selling price of Php 20,995 definitely rings a better standpoint among Zenfones and other brands lobbying in the same price category. With its impressive pc-grade performance, camera, and massive storage, the device exceeded my expectations. The unit’s solid built, which makes it classy and elegant, serves as one of its selling factor. If you’re a photo enthusiast, a gamer, or professional who is looking for a smartphone that couldn’t be outlasted for the next two years, this unit is highly recommendable, you get much than what you spend and that what makes it special.

Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition Box

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About The Author
Bon Francisco Talampas, Jr.
Bon Talampas, Jr. is a computer engineer, a former member of a technical team that supports a leading health care company. Prior to his stint abroad, he worked as an IT specialist and a university lecturer. Bon also holds an MBA. And aside from being a computer geek and DOTA fanatic, he spends most of his idle hours in blogging and photography. You can also read more about him at