There is a crucial moment in the history of (almost) every smartphone brand in which it has to prove that it is capable of making mobile phones that match the big names in the market. The Aquaris X Pro is that moment for BQ. A terminal that offers a further step in design and performance .
And arguments are not lacking. A camera with Dual Pixel technology from Samsung, 4 GB of RAM or a battery that exceeds the day of normal use are some of them. And with an elegant design with glass on the front and back to enhance its appeal.
All this with a price of 360 euros . A cheaper alternative to the big ones on the market. That is, to the Samsung Galaxy S8 + or the iPhone 7. We have been able to tinker with this team for a few days. This is our review with opinions of the BQ Aquaris X Pro.
BQ Aquaris X Pro datasheet
|screen||5.2 ″ IPS with Dinorex protection and Full HD resolution (1,920 x 1,080 pixels)|
|Main chamber||Samsung camera with 12 MP Dual Pixel technology|
|Camera for selfies||8 megapixels, Full HD video|
|Internal memory||64 GB / Expandable via microSD card|
|Extension||microSD up to 256GB|
|Processor and RAM||Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 2.2 GHz, 4 GB|
|Operating system||Android 7.1.1 Nougat|
|Connections||BT 4.2 GPS, USB Type-C, NFC, WiFiac|
|SIM||2 x nanoSIM|
|Design||Metal, fingerprint reader on the back|
|Dimensions||146.5 x 72.7 x 7.8 mm, 158 g|
|Featured Features||High-quality camera with Samsung Dual Pixel technology|
The camera, the jewel in the crown
Samsung Dual Pixel camera, excellent low light performance, 4K video with stabilizer, selfie camera with good f / 2.0 aperture
BQ has been like that clever student who sticks to the smartest in the class when they go to distribute the groups for the coursework. The company has integrated a Samsung dual sensor camera, its Dual Pixel technology, into its mobile . And the results are more than remarkable.
This camera has a resolution of 12 megapixels, with pixels of size 1.4 µm. What does this mean? That each pixel is capable of capturing 40% more information, resulting in sharper and more defined images. But, in addition, the fact of using Dual Pixel technology translates into an aperture of f / 1.8. That is, sharper photos in low light and practically immediate focus.
The BQ Aquaris X Pro uses a 12-megapixel Samsung S5K2L7SX lens with Dual Pixel technology, f / 1.8 aperture and 1.4 µm pixels.
That does not mean that noise is not noticeable in night photos. But the photos are much brighter than the average. However, the real difference is made by the photos taken in a dark room or at nightfall. In those cases, the image returns more light than we can capture with our own eye. A l margin of our opinions, BQ Aquaris X Pro features a camera that has little to envy the more powerful models.
Another feature that BQ has wanted to highlight is its Zero Shutter Lag technology . What is done with this technology is to take up to 10 photos automatically as soon as you activate the camera. When taking the photo, six of them are merged to get a higher quality photo. Honestly, what we have missed is a higher speed when loading the camera itself . If it is because of this technology, I would have preferred (at least on a personal level) that they chose to speed up load times. And it is that many times we want to take a photo of a scene that barely stays alive for a couple of seconds.
The Aquaris X Pro's HDR + mode achieves great performance
Apart from this small but, we are before a camera that impresses. Especially if we take into account the price of the equipment, 360 euros. To improve the photos, the HDR mode could not be missing either. In this case, we have both HDR and HDR + or improved .
Photo of the BQ Aquaris X Pro with HDR + activated
Night photo with the Aquaris X Pro camera and without flash
4K video with stabilizer
Apart from the photos, the BQ Aquaris X Pro's camera is also capable of recording content with 4K quality at 30 fps (or Full HD at 30 fps). The inclusion of a stabilizer makes the difference. And is that thanks to this tool we can enjoy videos without the typical tremors when we record in motion.
And we finish the review of the camera section with the front lens. As with the main camera, BQ has brought a Samsung-invoiced camera for taking selfies. Its 8 megapixels of resolution are combined with an aperture of f / 2.0 to improve night photos.
The front camera of the BQ Aquaris X Pro uses a Samsung S5K4H8YX lens with a 1.12 µm pixel size and features a front flash
Speaking of night photos, we also have a front flash, a feature that is rare to find on these cameras. It shows when taking selfies in low light conditions. Video recording in this case stays in Full HD 1080p.
Photo gallery taken with the Aquaris X Pro
An elegant but heavy design
Design with metal on the sides and glass on the front and back, rounded edges, fingerprint reader on the back, 158 grams of weight
The advanced version of the BQ Aquaris X is a team that bets on an elegant, very balanced design. Its bet is similar to that of Samsung, by combining the glass on both the back and the front with the metal on the sides. And the truth is that the appearance of this terminal exudes good taste on all four sides.
Of course there is a but, and it is the weight that the Aquaris X Pro reaches. Its 158 grams are not an excessive figure, but it shows. Its design brings it closer to models such as the Sony Xperia XZ or the Samsung Galaxy A5 2017. Precisely, from this latest model it takes an example in a key feature: autonomy. The X Pro gains a few grams in its design, but it does so at the cost of increasing battery capacity up to 3,100 milliamps. And that is something that is appreciated on a day-to-day basis. The full dimensions of the Aquaris X Pro stand at 146.5 x 72.7 x 7.8 millimeters.
The Spanish company has used rounded bezels at the rear to improve grip and give a more premium look . The fingerprint reader is on the back, and has been surrounded by a metallic circle that gives it a differential touch. Meanwhile, the camera has been positioned in the upper left corner with its dual LED flash just below. This camera does not protrude a millimeter from the rear.
Another surprising element in the design of the Aquaris X Pro is its speaker. This is located at the bottom, just to the right of the loading port. A well-thought-out position so that we don't lose sound power when placing the mobile on a surface. Of course, if we play with the mobile horizontally, we can cover the speaker space by mistake.
As for the audio itself, the truth is that it has left a very good taste in our mouths. Both its power and its quality are remarkable and it is possible to listen to the sound of a video with ambient noise.
Two different colors
The Aquaris X Pro is available in two different shades: black and white . In our case, we have been able to test the blank configuration. You can put few buts to the design of this model. We have already commented that the weight is noticeable, but without being exaggerated. We have also noticed that the rear is not perfectly assembled in our test unit, as the glass layer is slightly offset to the right. But it is a detail that goes unnoticed if one does not pay much attention.
BQ Aquaris X Pro photo gallery
The other point that does not quite convince us are the touch buttons on the front . These buttons have a really original design, through dots in metallic color. However, if we use the mobile phone at night or in a dark room, it will be difficult for us to know where to press (at least, until one gets used to the dimensions of the equipment).
Good power and memory
Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 processor, 4GB RAM, good overall performance, 64GB internal memory
The Aquaris X Pro from BQ uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor that is one step below the most powerful chips. Specifically, an eight-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 is used , clocked at 2.2 GHz per core. The experience of using the equipment has been, in general, quite positive. There is good fluidity through menus and in applications and games. In truth, one of the few moments in which we have noticed more slowness has been when loading the camera app . But the rest of the time the smartphone lives up to a high-mid-range team.
The inclusion of a 4 GB RAM memory contributes to this good performance. More than enough capacity to handle many processes and open apps at the same time.
Apart from our personal tests, we have faced the Aquaris X Pro against two of the main battery of tests: AnTuTu Benchmark and Geekbench 4. These have been the results:
From left to right, BQ Aquaris X Pro results in AnTuTu Benchmark and Geekbench 4
The results are far from the most powerful equipment on the market and remains average.
In terms of memory, the Aquaris X Pro reaches 64 GB , a figure typical of the leading teams on the scene such as the Samsung Galaxy S8 + or the Huawei P10 . If we remove the space from the operating system itself and the pre-installed apps, we have just over 50 GB to store our photos, apps or games. In principle, more than enough capacity. In case of need, we can use the mobile's microSD card slot.
A mobile with dual SIM
By the way, this mobile allows us to work with two nanoSIM type cards at the same time . Of course, we have to choose between the extra space of the microSD card or the second phone line (they share the space on the tray).
IPS screen with good level of brightness and color treatment, Dinorex glass, 5.2-inch format, Full HD resolution
Another point in which this mobile has left a good taste in our mouths. The screen of the BQ Aquaris X Pro has IPS technology. Although it is a step below the AMOLED panels, the truth is that the result is quite good. The sharpness and color treatment of this screen are up to par, and the maximum brightness level favors its use even under the impact of sunlight.
The company wanted to highlight the protection of its Dinorex glass , a new competitor for the popular Corning Gorilla glasses. The IPS panel of the BQ Aquaris X Pro is committed to a 5.2-inch format, the standard for mobile phones looking for a more compact format. It seems incredible to speak of compact for this size, but the truth is that we are already seeing 5.8 ″ and 6.2 ″ proposals in the Samsung Galaxy S8 this year. In addition, the 5.5-inch format has become very widespread in recent times.
The resolution of the panel is Full HD of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, for a density of 424 dots per inch. This is a good level of detail, although it is true that the teams that are one step above the BQ mobile are betting on more powerful resolutions. However, on a personal level I think that with a Full HD resolution of 5.2 inches it works perfectly.
Varied and complete connections
WiFi AC, USB Type-C port, NFC, Bluetooth 4.2
There are many times that companies sacrifice connections in order to maintain a more competitive price at their terminals. This is not the case with the Aquaris X Pro.
This mobile incorporates a complete set of connections. Starting with the inclusion of its USB type C port with fast charging . A connector that is increasingly present in a greater number of devices. Speaking of fast charging, this mobile is capable of charging half the battery in just half an hour (we will discuss it again in the autonomy section).
Another of the advanced points of the Aquaris X Pro is its WiFi AC connection . It is an increasingly useful network protocol. It allows us to connect simultaneously to both the 2.4 GHz bandwidth and the 5 GHz bandwidth. The former is the one used by the vast majority of connected devices today. Its main problem is that it is a very congested width in which interference occurs constantly. The 5 GHz bandwidth is faster, more stable, and is intended to use multiple computers on each network.
We also have Bluetooth 4.2, the latest version of this technology to connect devices. Or with NFC . Touch technology does not finish taking off, but it can give us a lot of play if we want to use the mobile to pay.
Up to two days of use without charging
3,100 milliamp battery, a day and a half of normal use, fast charging technology to recover half the battery in half an hour
Another section in which this mobile stands out in a special way. The Aquaris X Pro has a 3,100 milliamp battery . On paper, it is a capacity that is not bad but that does not impress. Of course, this feeling changes when using the device on a day-to-day basis. In general, we have been able to finish an intense day with a battery of 35-40% , and even use it sometimes a second day without having to charge it until nightfall. And that is a lot to say.
This equipment is very well optimized and offers us, according to the brand itself, up to 11 hours of HD video viewing or browsing for more than 10 hours . The truth is that in a day-to-day use it more than meets. In addition, it also incorporates a fast charging technology capable of recovering 50% of the smartphone with just half an hour of charging. Data that make clear the care that the Spanish company has put in this field. It does not reach the level of models like the Huawei Mate 9 or the Samsung Galaxy A5 2017, but the Aquaris X Pro stays quite close.
Operating system and own apps
Android 7 Nougat, clean interface
One function that can give us a lot of play is to quickly switch between recent apps. To do this, you have to press the button twice quickly to open the list of apps. At the notification level, the basic change is grouped notifications. That means, for example, that we can open the WhatsApp notification panel and display the notifications separated by conversations.
As for its own apps, the truth is that BQ has decided to keep the mobile interface quite clean. That will allow us to enjoy a purer Android experience, with a more agile performance. What we do have is a portal called BQ Plus, designed for us to take out additional insurance for our mobile phones.
Price and reviews
360 euros, camera with high quality Samsung invoice, use of metal and glass in the design, balanced technical package
Opinions aside, we have to admit it. The Aquaris X Pro from BQ is a mobile that shines with its own light. The Spanish company has hit the table with this team, capable of competing face to face with the big names in the market. Much of the strength of his proposal comes from his camera. With Samsung invoice and Dual Pixel technology for bright photos and almost instant focus. But the BQ Aquaris X Pro does not stay in the camera. And that is the great secret of its success compared to other similar proposals.
Starting with the design. This device combines the use of metal on the sides with glass on the front and back . The bezels on the case have also been rounded for better grip and a more attractive touch. It is not a particularly light model. But the reason is obvious. A battery capable of holding a day and a half of regular use. In addition, a fast charging system has also been incorporated that allows you to recover half the battery in half an hour.
Its technical set is not the most powerful, but it counteracts it with an excellent variety of connections. And all this, as expected, with the latest available version of Android 7 Nougat . The Aquaris X Pro from BQ is priced at € 360 , a very competitive cost for the features it includes. Without a doubt, the most serious proposal to date from the Spanish firm.
-The main camera with Samsung invoice and Dual Pixel technology
-Its good autonomy of almost two days of use
-The balance of specifications
-An elegant design combining glass and metal
-Its price of 360 euros
IT CAN BE BETTER
-The slow loading of the camera app
-It is not a particularly light mobile
-Lack of color options in a market with more and more variety