Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe vs. Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus: Which is a Better Buy?

Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe and Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus are two phablets sporting large screens, more than a plenty of RAM, excellent cameras, all-metal body, and lots of storage. Both models were unveiled recently, so let’s see which one looks like a better buy.

Asus ZenFone 3 Deluxe

Dimensions, Design

Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe and Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus have almost the same dimensions (154.6 x 77.7 x 8 mm vs. 156.4 x 77.4 x 7.5 mm). Although the Zenfone 3 Deluxe is a bit larger, the difference is almost invisible when looking at two phones at once.

Both models sport a full-metal body, thin profile, and almost invisible bezels. The Zenfone 3 Deluxe has sharp sides, while the Mi 5s Plus went with curved backside which should be more comfortable to hold. The Mi 5s Plus looks a bit dated since the phone features a classic Xiaomi design seen on many models before. On the other side, the Zenfone 3 Deluxe sports a strikingly attractive design, looking beautiful from all sides.

Hardware, Display

xiaomi mi5s Plus

Xiaomi 5s Plus comes with the new Snapdragon 821 (2×2.35 GHz Kryo & 2×1.6 GHz Kryo coupled with Adreno 530 GPU) with the clock of performance cluster being a bit higher than on the Mi 5s, offering even more processing power. The new flagship chipset from Qualcomm will not let you down, it is capable of running modern 3D games flawlessly, and should perform extremely snappy in regular use. The phone (as most models from Xiaomi) comes in two flavors – 4GB/64GB and 6GB/128GB. The internal storage can’t be expanded, but 128 gigabytes should be enough for almost all users.

Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe comes either with Snapdragon 820 (2×2.15 GHz Kryo & 2×1.6 GHz Kryo along with Adreno 530) or Snapdragon 821 (2×2.4 GHz Kryo & 2×2.0 GHz Kryo coupled with Adreno 530). A bit higher clock of the 821 version in comparison with the Mi 5s Plus probably won’t make any difference in day-to-day use, but higher clock frequency sure looks better. The phone comes with 4/6 GB of RAM and 64/128/256 GB of internal storage. It’s worth noting that you can add an SD card if wanting to expand the storage. Plenty of RAM and a huge storage capacity, which can be expanded (technically, with a 256 Gb SD card you can have more than 500 GB of storage space), along with Snapdragon 821 make a Zenfone 3 Deluxe a better choice if the hardware is all you look at.

Both phones feature 5.7-inch 1080p displays. The Mi 5s Plus has an IPS LCD screen, while the Zenfone 3 Deluxe sports a Super AMOLED screen. The sharpness could’ve been better with a 2K resolution but still, 1080p is more than enough (386 ppi pixel density). IPS LCD will give you more naturally looking colors and huge viewing angles, while AMOLED displays offer rich (some would say oversaturated) colors and deeper blacks. One way or another, both models are perfect for watching videos and even can be used for reading e-books, completely replacing a tablet.

Camera

The Mi 5s Plus uses a dual-camera solution similar to those seen on Huawei P9 (it uses one RGB and one BW sensor, the same as the P9), LG G5 or the new iPhone 7 Plus. There are two cameras on the back, each one having 12 MP (f/2.0) and using Sony’s sensor with large 1.55 um pixel size perfect for low light conditions, supporting phase detection autofocus and dual-LED flash. The main camera is capable of recording 2160p (4K) videos@30fps. The selfie one counts 4MP (f/2.0) and is capable of recording 1080p videos.

The Zenfone 3 Deluxe is equipped with a huge, 23 MP camera sensor (f/2.0) supporting 4-axis OIS, laser/phase detection autofocus and a dual-LED flash. The camera can record 2160p (4K0 videos@30fps. The front facing snapper has 8 MP (f/2.0) and can record 1080p videos.

Battery, Software

Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus comes equipped with a 3800 mAh battery, while the Zenfone 3 Deluxe has 3000 Battery (a bit low considering the huge 5.7-inches screen). Both phones are equipped with a fingerprint sensor (placed on the backside on both models), a quick charge capability (Quick Charge 3.0 in both cases) and dual SIM slot.

Both models come with Android Marshmallow (the Zenfone 3 Deluxe is coated with Asus ZenIU user interface, while the Mi 5s Plus comes with Xiaomi’s MIUI).

Price

The Mi 5s Plus can be grabbed at the official Xiaomi site for $449 (4GB/64GB version) or for $509 (6GB/128GB version), with the shipping starting after November 30; the Zenfone 3 Deluxe’s (Snapdragon 821 version) expected price is somewhere around Rs 49,990 ($750).

Conclusion

Looking at the overall image (design, hardware, and price), the Mi 5s Plus looks like a much better choice. It’s cheaper, has a dual-camera setup, up to 128 GB of internal storage and a solid all-metal design. The Zenfone 3 Deluxe offers more storage space and an expandable storage (6 gigs of RAM can’t be fully utilized at the moment) but compared to the Mi 5s Plus it’s just too expensive.