1. vc-10's Avatar
    I've had a Lumia 800 in black since launch, and I've loved it, but I decided to upgrade to the Lumia 925. I stuck with O2 despite 3 being cheaper, as 3's signal is, erm, variable around where I live, and I've never had any issues with O2. Their 'Refresh' thing helped too :-)

    Anyway, onto the phone.

    The box is made up from some eco-recycled paper board thing, and it feels kind of cheap. Certainly nowhere near as solid as the 800's box. But you don't buy a phone for the box, do you? It contains the phone on a little tray, which has a small indent and a plastic flap for the SIM removal tool (which is shaped like the silver camera strip in the back of an 800 or 920!). This tray sits on top of a little box thing which contains the manual, which in turn sits upon some dividers at the bottom of the main box. Inside are headphones and a USB cord. No charger is supplied with O2 phones, all part of their green initiative.


    The phone is, for the most part, great. The screen is to die for- the high pixel density of the 920, combined with the wonderful AMOLED 'pop' of the 800. The blacks are deeper than an oil tycoon's soul, and the colours are vibrant. There is the normal slight cast to the whites though, as there often is on AMOLED screens. The 925 includes the clock on the screen when it's 'off', although I've set this to turn itself off after 15 minutes. It also turns off when something is placed over proximity sensor, so it doesn't waste power telling your thigh the time.

    The build quality feels typically Nokia solid, however there is some flex in the backplate. Fit however isn't quite where it should be, at least with my phone. The SIM tray doesn't sit quite right and is slightly bulbous, and the backplate/aluminium gap isn't quite even all the way around. The phone feels great in hand though, and the polycarbonate backplate doesn't feel slippy like some plastics can be.

    As with most (all?) Windows Phones, the UI is slick and rapid. My housemate has a Galaxy S3, which feels clunky and slow, but then again it felt clunky and slow compared to my 800, so no change there. I wouldn't be surprised if it felt clunky and slow compared to a 520, to be honest. Comparing to another housemate's iPhone 4S, the 925 again feels slicker, but not by much. That's not a slight against the 925, it's more that the iPhone 4S is also running a well designed OS that doesn't lag. Overall, you probably wouldn't see any improvement in slickness if you stuck an Intel Core i7 in there- WP8 is just that good.

    I'm not a massive gamer, so I've not downloaded many yet. The only one I've played so far (only had it a day...) is Harbour Master, which, as expected, had no issues and ran smoothly.

    However, I am blown away by the camera. It's superb. Low light is like nothing else I've tried- it wipes the floor with my old point-and-shoot Canon Ixus, which should be taking much better pictures with its larger sensor and larger array of lenses. I took this photo outside at my parents house. This is in a rural area with no street lighting, and the external lighting was off, so this is just from the light of the moon.

    Now, yes, there's plenty of noise, but it's a phone. This is brighter than what I could see. Just scary.
    This is another one, not pointing at the moon.


    Daylight shots are also great. I didn't have anything to compare it too, but I took this one of one of my mum's sculptures that she wanted my opinion on at the foundry.

    And of some bits of Wankel Rotary engine that were lying around at the foundry!


    And then a comparison between 2 pictures of my dog- one with the 925, one with the 800.
    925:

    800:


    I'm still not 100% about the design of the phone. The camera hump isn't as noticeable in reality as it is in the press pictures, but it's still there which could bug some people. I'm also really worried that I'll destroy the white back. I'm going to get the black charging plate and cover though. White wouldn't have been my first choice, I'd have rather had the grey or black, but O2 don't seem to want to do them. I'm sure some clever person will come up with a way of changing the back plate.

    There are some things I don't like though. Firstly, no charger. It doesn't feel 'eco', it feels cheap. Like the box. Which isn't the most wonderful feeling when you've just signed up to a 37/month 2 year contract. It also means that I can't just pass on my old 800 to someone unless they have a charger, as now I need it for the 925. I also liked the fact that Nokia gave you a 'free' rubber case with the 800, which was a really nice touch. The USB cable supplied is also a bit odd. It's the newer rubberised version, not the nice plastic one that they supplied with my 800 (my mum's 800, which she got last September, has a rubberised cable and different wall wart). However the new USB cable is really stiff, which makes it awkward plugging it into the phone.

    The AMOLED screen also glows slightly at night when the clock is being displayed. I think this is just light bouncing around inside the screen, but it's weird. I've not noticed this before, and it's so slight as to be unnoticeable when you're actually using the phone in the dark as your eyes adjust to the screen, but it's a niggle. And the proximity sensor seems to have a small red LED in it too.

    There are also a couple of software things that aren't right. I'm not sure if these are general WP8 gripes or not, but anyway. Firstly, I've got XBox Music, so it went and auto-populated my phone. Fine. But I can't get it to download any of the things it auto-populated. If I have them on my PC I can sync them over, but some of them are having issues, and it won't let me delete music from the phone, at least as far as I have found.
    I also don't like that it doesn't seem to let you specify a default 'Share to...' in the photos. WP7 called it 'Quick Share' and it was in the Pictures+Camera settings, but this seems to be gone from WP8.
    It also doesn't have the 'Nokia Blue' theme colour, just a nasty pale blue from O2 :-(

    The battery life could be a bit of an issue though. It's a bit too early to tell, but it's not looking good right now. I'm not sure if this is because it's not learned how much charge its battery actually holds, or if it's just not got great battery life, but I charged it overnight, didn't get up until 10 this morning, and it was dying at about 4pm. Not impressive. I'm going to run it down completely, charge it up, run it down etc a couple of times and see if that improves things, but if not, it could be a bit of a deal breaker.
    06-14-2013 05:54 PM
  2. crash1989's Avatar
    Use Proshot for even better Night shots. Proshot has manual focus, Shutter Speed selection and ISO settings which can dramatically improve photos.

    No wonder it is the best paid app. I previously ranted on the forums about night pics' quality of 920 and was suggested I use this app.
    06-14-2013 06:31 PM
  3. 12Danny123's Avatar
    I think about the battery problem. I think you need to use more to get the battery to last longer. that's how it worked on my WPs, androids and iphones. Also cute dog.

    PS. I thought the Moon was planet Venus. apparently not. Love seeing the Milky Way galactic centre here in NZ :-). use my Nokia Lumia 920 to take a picture of it.
    06-14-2013 06:45 PM
  4. vc-10's Avatar
    Thanks, might have to try that! Those pics were with everything in Auto- I've not played with any of the camera settings yet. Nokia SmartCam is quite cool though!

    Edit: Danny- that's what I'm hoping. But I've not had it long enough really- only got it yesterday! Hoping that running it down properly will sort it out.

    Also had a slight issue with Photosynth. It doesn't seem that the gyro is properly calibrated. If I'm taking a 360 panorama, it thinks I've got all the way around when I've got about 270 degrees around, and then gets really confused as it tries to stitch things together. Any ideas how to calibrate the gyro?
    06-14-2013 06:46 PM
  5. RussellMb's Avatar
    Thanks for your review. Can you describe in detail any changes in the amber update?
    06-14-2013 06:48 PM
  6. vc-10's Avatar
    Thanks for your review. Can you describe in detail any changes in the amber update?
    This is my first WP8 phone (had a Lumia 800 with WP7.8 before) so I don't know what changes were made, sorry.
    06-14-2013 06:49 PM
  7. paddylaz's Avatar
    Great review mate, good work!
    06-15-2013 03:26 AM
  8. Yipcanjo's Avatar
    "The blacks are deeper than an oil tycoon's soul"

    Quote of the day :)
    mmar1974 likes this.
    06-21-2013 11:00 AM
  9. original.woodster's Avatar
    to OP, how are you managing with pocket lint? im finding its gathering around the camera lens and sim tray.
    06-21-2013 12:57 PM
  10. Muessig's Avatar
    Great review, enjoying reading up about your impressions. The box looks a lot like the one I got with my 920. If you want to see a truly recycled feel box have a look at the AT&T 920's or the Samsung Galaxy S4 boxes if I'm remembering rightly? Keep the impressions coming!
    06-21-2013 01:18 PM
  11. mmar1974's Avatar
    "The blacks are deeper than an oil tycoon's soul"

    Quote of the day :)
    hahaha agreed, was about to write the same...
    06-21-2013 01:59 PM
  12. WP8fan's Avatar
    What is the speaker like?
    06-22-2013 03:05 PM
  13. vc-10's Avatar
    Speaker is fine, but obviously gets muffled if you place it on something soft like a cushion, but there are 2 little bumps in the grille that keep it off if you put it on a hard surface like a table.

    Pocket lint is fine on the camera lens and SIM tray, but it does get stuck the earpiece a bit.

    Battery life is much improved now it's learnt how much charge it has, but it's still not great. Not as good as my Lumia 800 at least.
    06-22-2013 05:20 PM

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