Xiaomi Mix Fold 2 Full Review
Smartphones from Xiaomi and company-owned brands (especially Redmi) are generally perceived as “top value for money” in our region. That is, devices with good value for money, which are convenient to use every day. But Mix Fold 2 is a device of a different category, the main task of which is to prove that Xiaomi has entered the “big league” and can compete with the most technologically advanced gadgets from other manufacturers.
Slim and comfortable
On the test – the maximum configuration, with 12 GB of RAM and a whole 1 TB of storage (although microSD is not supported). The assets include the ability to use two nano-SIM cards at the same time, as well as support for 5G networks (LTE connection, despite the Chinese origin of the gadget, works without any questions – checked).
- eSIM. From a slightly offensive – the rejection of built-in eSIM-cards, as well as the inability to work with the stylus. There is no wireless charging in Mix Fold 2, protection against water and dust according to the IPX standard, too. These are the main hardware disadvantages of the device in comparison with its main competitors. Firstly, from Samsung.
- 11.2 mm. What are the advantages of the Xiaomi novelty over the latest? Thickness: when the phone is folded it is 11.2 mm, when unfolded it is only 5.4 mm. By the standards of phones with flexible displays, the Mix Fold 2 is one of the slimmest. In the front pocket of your jeans, you are unlikely to wear it anyway, at least with comfort, but there is progress.
- External screen. The second most important feature is the external screen, or rather, its width. Thanks to the aspect ratio (21:9), it is really convenient to use it in everyday life, constantly without revealing the main one in situations where this is not very relevant – for example, on the street. In my case, the ratio of use time between the outer and inner panel is about 30% to 70% (in other phones with flip screens, the first number is noticeably less). Simply put, typing, surfing the web, looking at photos – doing it with the Mix Fold 2 closed is almost as convenient as on an ordinary smartphone.
- Fingerprint scanner. Otherwise, everything is familiar. The fingerprint scanner was placed on the side, in the power key – a great solution. The block of the main camera sticks out at the back, but when the phone is on the table, there is no fidgeting (due to the length of this block). Of the additional advantages – the absence of a gap between the halves of the flexible screen. They fit snugly together, creating less room for deformation. For retrogrades, they kept the IR emitter for controlling household appliances (a favorite feature of Chinese smartphones), the NFC module is in place.
- Harmon Kardon. You can only find fault with the stereo speakers. Despite the inscription Harmon Kardon, the speakers are a bit lacking in bass.
Bright and high contrast displays
- Displays. From a technical standpoint, there are no questions about both Mix Fold 2 displays. The diagonal of the first, external one is 6.56 inches (AMOLED, 1080 by 2520 pixels, 120 Hz). Main, internal – 8, 02 inches (AMOLED, 1914 by 2160 pixels, 360 ppi, 120 Hz).
- 1300 nits. Interestingly, the aspect ratio of the flex panel (10.16 by 9) is almost square. There are no problems with the brightness of the two screens either (up to a thousand nits in automatic mode and up to 1300 nits at the peak point, for example, with HDR). On paper, the figures are not record-breaking – the displays of the latest phones from Apple, Samsung, and Xiaomi itself glow brighter (up to two thousand nits).
- Mix Fold 2. But there has never been a situation in which the current level of Mix Fold 2 would not be enough. In general, you obviously don’t have to worry about this aspect.
- Color profiles. The settings traditionally offer a choice between several color profiles with warmer or colder display shades. I did not change anything – the default mode does not squeeze the contrast, balancing well between “colorfulness” and excessive “acidity”. Of the minuses – traditional white color inversion when tilted or viewed from the side (not strong, but still noticeable).
- LTPO. The external display operates at a frequency of 30 to 120 Hz, the internal one – from 1 to 120 Hz (here is a more advanced LTPO matrix, which is more careful about battery charge). But such knowledge is not required from the user – by default, the mode is active, which independently varies the frequency of screens. If you do not take games into account, almost all applications run at increased speeds – automation does a good job.
- Always-On-Display. Another well-known mode is Always-On- Display (for the external panel) – has no features in comparison with analogues in other Android smartphones. I set it up so that the display shows the date and hours after a single touch (and goes out after a few seconds).
Autonomy — Ok
It's clearly not worth expecting miracles from Mix Fold 2 in terms of running time on a single charge, but there was no disappointment either – a 4500 mAh battery produces about 5–6 hours of active screens. Considering the size of the interior, this is quite decent. It's nice that in standby mode (when Wi-Fi is on), the charge also does not disappear before our eyes.
The smartphone stayed with me a little less than a week, the day of which I did not use it – it took about 10%. The conclusion is standard: more autonomy depends on how intensively you use your smartphone and what tasks you load. If you play Genshin Impact non-stop, the charge will evaporate after a few hours. In the average daily mode, from YouTube during a lunch break and in the evening, Telegram and Instagram (with a navigator on the way to work and back) from 9 am after charging until 21–22 hours, the phone will live without problems.
Mix Fold 2 supports a 67-watt power adapter (it comes with a Chinese plug, though) – the manufacturer promises a full charge from it in 40 minutes. I charged with an adapter from a MacBook Pro – it took about the same time.
Performance and heating
Mix Fold 2 was introduced at the end of August last year – at that time, Qualcomm's Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 was the top chip, which was installed in the gadget. Smartphones based on Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, the next generation of SoCs, will start appearing very soon. But there are no issues in using the “plus” – there is no way to reproach the Fold 2 with a lack of performance. Specifications:
- Antutu (v9). Antutu (v9) and CPU Throttling Test. The first is a benchmark for overall performance, the second is for throttling (or changing power under a long and high load). With power, as expected, everything is fine – more than a million points.
- Qualcomm. The second test was a pleasant surprise – in the more complicated version (30 minutes and 100 threads instead of 15 minutes and 20 threads), the graph remained in the “green zone”, peak power decreased by a maximum of 25 percent. Such stress testing is the lot of “synthetics”, in ordinary life it is difficult to achieve such a level of load. This is confirmed by relatively low heat – the case, obviously, becomes noticeably warm, but not hot. Who should be thanked for this, Xiaomi engineers or Qualcomm experts, is a question. But the result, especially if you remember the thickness of the case at 5, 4 mm when unfolded, pleases.
Software and interface features
Before starting all the tests, I updated the smartphone to Android 13 and, more interestingly, the MIUI Fold 14.0.3 skins. In general, the system is stable: applications do not crash, “freezes” not seen in interface with crumbling animations. Features:
- Multitasking. The only controversial point, related to multitasking – the inability to resize windows when you run two applications in parallel in a split screen (as in the frame below). Splitting the screen into three areas or more will not work either. But it will turn out to display an additional program in a separate miniature window – it can be moved across the available area on top of two already running applications (and even vary its scale).
- Games. Moreover, some games (like Genshin Impact) look fine in full screen, while others (like Call of Duty Mobile) don't so much because of the reduced resolution. The smartphone itself will offer to run them in a wide-scale format (but the possibility of a forced full-screen option remains).
Mix Fold 2 includes three main photomodules, on which (only in the software part) they worked together with Leica – there is a corresponding add-on in the proprietary Camera application. The first sensor is 50 MP (f/1.8, OIS), the second is 8 MP (telephoto, 2x zoom, f/2.6), the third is 13 MP (ultra-wide-angle, f/2.4). The smartphone allows you to record video in resolution up to 8K/30 fps (or 4K/60 fps).
Xiaomi Mix Fold 2 is hardly a “pen test”. Subjectively, there are no more controversial points in the device than obviously successful ones. Among the latter, firstly, a normal-sized (in particular, width) external display stands out, thanks to which using the gadget on the go, especially typing on the on-screen keyboard, does not cause any particular inconvenience. Summary:
In addition, when unfolded, the device turned out to be quite thin, according to this parameter, Mix Fold 2 still outperforms competing models from other companies. Another important point: despite such a thickness, the phone does not overheat to a level at which it becomes uncomfortable to hold in your hand. In any case, in ordinary life (even including game sessions in complex AAA projects for 20 minutes), this was not noticed. Although to what extent this is the merit of Xiaomi engineers, and not Qualcomm specialists, who managed to less optimize Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 chip, a question. The main camera set up with Leica is more than good enough. In what positions is the Mix Fold 2 still lagging?