./uploads/advanced-cache.php Vivo X100 Pro Review: Practically flawless

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Vivo X100 Pro Review: Practically flawless

Vivo's X100 Pro gets incredible camera hardware, solid performance and premium build quality. But should you go ahead and buy it?

Vivo X100 Pro

Vivo’s X100 Pro follows smartphones like the X80 Pro and the X90 Pro, and as you’d expect it comes jampacked with top-tier hardware. Vivo’s X Series has been about offering a superlative camera experience coupled with all the hardware essentials that you’d expect a flagship device to have. The X100 Pro follows the script, and you get a familiar-looking (but very different) triple camera layout, a flagship processor (a MediaTek Dimensity 9300 SoC), premium build quality, and a large battery. To help with the photography chops of the X100 Pro, there’s a new V3 imaging chip as well. 

I have spent the past few weeks with Vivo’s top-of-the-line smartphone and honestly, I am very impressed. 

Camera hardware on the Vivo X100 Pro

Camera module of the X100 Pro

Let us start with the camera module. Vivo has gone with a triple 50MP camera setup in the X100 Pro. The primary 1-inch type Sony IMX989 sensor with PDAF and OIS is central to its camera ensemble. This sensor’s sheer size and technological prowess allow it to absorb more light, rendering images with richness and depth, even in challenging lighting conditions.

Accompanying the primary sensor is a Zeiss APO floating periscope telephoto lens, utilizing a half-inch OV64B sensor. This novel configuration enables a unique blend of macro and zoom photography, allowing users to capture close-ups and detailed shots from a distance with the same 4.3X optical zoom capability. 

The trio is completed by a 50-megapixel ultra-wide camera, now powered by a Samsung JN1 sensor. For selfie enthusiasts, the front-facing 32-megapixel camera has been upgraded from the X90 Pro.

Vivo has meticulously designed the camera software to enhance the shooting experience, offering three color modes—Vivid, Textured, and Zeiss Natural. I like the Natural mode as it seems to reproduce colours that are closer to reality. 

Over the past few weeks, what’s evident is that the X100 Pro holds its ground against photography heavyweights like the Google Pixel 8 Pro, especially in low light conditions where its dynamic range and detail retention shine. The introduction of the Zeiss T* coating minimizes lens flare, a common issue in night photography, thereby enhancing image quality under artificial lighting. This was particularly useful to someone like me who tends to attend launch events pretty often. A number of smartphone cameras are prone to introduce flare in images shot under harsh stage lights. As a result, I resorted to using the X100 Pro for such shots. 

The main 1-inch type sensor is a tried and tested one and it does deliver. Shots are crisp with good dynamic range, excellent detail and very little noise. Even when the lighting isn’t the best, the camera delivers detailed, colour accurate shots with not a lot of noise. The large camera sensor has to be credited here. 

The telephoto camera, with its innovative lens arrangement, stands out for its ability to capture high-quality portraits at 4.3X zoom, introducing a level of flexibility otherwise not seen in smartphone cameras. This, combined with the option to select professional portrait focal lengths, elevates the portrait photography experience. The result is a smartphone that is a champ at portrait photography and I found myself reaching for the X100 Pro for the delicious bokeh and background-foreground separation that it offered. 

The X100 Pro isn’t out to take on the likes of the S24 Ultra with its zoom capabilities, yet its performance remains impressive up to 10X zoom, beyond which the quality diminishes. The Super Macro mode and Telephoto Sunshot feature further distinguish the X100 Pro, offering specialized functionalities for macro photography and sunset shots, albeit with room for improvement in color accuracy.

On the whole, shots from the X100 Pro come across as detailed, with accurate colours. More importantly, the X100 Pro is a versatile smartphone camera with little loss of colour accuracy or detail while switching between lenses. 

Design and Build quality of the X100 Pro

While not a lot has changed on the design front, the X90 Pro, predecessor to the X100 Pro was a well-built phone with a distinctive look. The X100 Pro continues in the same vein with some refinements. One of the most striking alterations is observed in the rear camera module, which has undergone a transformation not just in size but in aesthetic appeal to accommodate larger sensors. The module boasts a unique crescent shape, encased in mirror-finish stainless steel with a sort of knurled effect at the very bottom of the ring. The halo is thicker towards the bottom and thinner at the top.  This distinctive design choice might polarize opinions due to its non-uniform appearance, yet it undeniably adds a touch of sophistication. 

The transition from vegan leather to a matte-finish fluorite glass panel on the back marks another departure from the X90 Pro’s design language. While the leather offered an unparalleled premium feel, the glass back still manages to exude elegance and sophistication, albeit with a more conventional touch. This choice, however, makes the device quite slippery, necessitating the use of the included protective cover for many users. Asteroid Black is the only colour option that the phone is available in India with. And I happen to like it a great deal. The frosted finish for the back glass also works very well with the design of the phone. 

Display and Performance of the Vivo X100 Pro

Display quality is where the Vivo X100 Pro truly excels. It features a 6.78-inch FHD+ AMOLED screen, courtesy of an LTPO panel with a dynamic refresh rate of up to 120Hz. This display is not just about fluidity; it offers an expansive color spectrum with 100 percent DCI-P3 coverage and an extraordinary peak brightness of 3000 nits. I am a sucker for high-brightness displays and the Vivo X100 Pro absolutely takes the cake. It is very crisp, incredibly bright and adjusts to ambient light changes in the blink of an eye. The inclusion of up to 2,160Hz PWM dimming technology is a thoughtful addition, minimizing screen flicker and making prolonged use more comfortable for the eyes.

The Vivo X100 Pro emerges as a contender among flagship smartphones, not just through its innovative camera system but also through its impressive performance credentials, battery life, and software ecosystem. Powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 9300 chipset (the first phone in India to get it) it showcased a blend of high performance and efficiency in our testing.

At its core, the Dimensity 9300 chipset features a dynamic octa-core setup, including four Cortex-X4 performance cores peaking at 3.25GHz and four Cortex-A720 efficiency cores. This is further bolstered by an ample 16GB of RAM coupled with an additional 16GB of virtual RAM, enabling seamless multitasking and quick app switching without the need to reload frequently used applications. Even gaming on high settings was not a problem and the phone was able to do it effortlessly with very little throttling or thermal issues. The phone’s vapor chamber cooling system must have definitely helped here.

The device runs on Funtouch OS 14, based on Android 14, offering a clean and intuitive user interface. There are a few pre-loaded apps but the software experience remains relatively uncluttered. Vivo has committed to delivering four major Android OS updates, which isn’t the very best that the Android ecosystem offers, but should ensure longevity for the smartphone. 

The Vivo X100 Pro’s impressive performance does come at the cost of battery life. Equipped with a substantial 5400mAh battery, the device manages to only last through a day of moderate to heavy use, which is good but nowhere close to the best in the segment. While some might hope for multi-day longevity, the inclusion of a 120W charging brick  mitigates this by offering rapid recharge times—replenishing the battery to 100 percent in just over 30 minutes.

Should you buy the Vivo X100 Pro?

The Vivo X100 Pro is bound to be a favourite among photography enthusiasts for its well-rounded camera module. Portraits shot on the phone might quite simply be among the best on any smartphone camera. With a range of focal lengths to choose from, the Vivo X100 Pro offers the sort of control that enthusiasts love to have. The other cameras are also very good, if not as spectacular as the telephoto. But there’s a whole lot more to the X100 Pro than just the camera system. It is one of the few phones with no real weaknesses. Solid display, great performance, premium build and stellar cameras are all rolled into one, and, as a result, there are very few arguments to be made against the X100 Pro. I am not sure how many would end up buying the X100 Pro over the more popular flagships, but at Rs. 89,999, it is simply incredible value. 

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