Razer Phone 2 review

7.7/10 AVG.
RATING



7.7/10
Informr score
The Razer Phone 2 currently has an Informr score of 7.7 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 23 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

The "1-Minute" Review

Verdict

If the allure of a high refresh rate display and playing the latest games at full quality appeals to you, the Razer Phone 2 excels. However, if you’re looking for a powerful, all-around phone, there are better values available.

What's good

  • Bright, colorful screen
  • 120hz refresh rate
  • Fast charging and wireless charging
  • IP67 rating
  • Snappy performance
  • MicroSD support
  • IP67 rating
  • Front-facing stereo speakers

What's bad

  • Chunky design
  • Weak camera
  • So-so battery life
  • Phone gets warm during gaming
  • No 3.5mm headphone jack

Gaming phones are a relatively new market. Razer’s initial release -- the Razer Phone -- set the bar for the niche. Now that other companies are releasing gaming-focused options, Razer is back with a refresh -- the Razer Phone 2. But does a phone built for gaming first and everything else second work for the average person?

Design

While most brands are trimming bezels and introducing curves to their designs, the Razer Phone 2 is a hefty rectangle of glass and aluminum. The only stylistic flair comes from the RGB logo on the glass rear panel. The logo offers 16.7 million color options and doubles as a notification light with the color changing based on the app wanting your attention.

Reviewers found the design chunky -- both in terms of how the phone looks and how it feels when holding it. While those with larger hands found the phone easy to use, reviewers with small hands found one-handed operation difficult and noted that the squared corners were uncomfortable in the hand after a few minutes of gaming.

On the upside, the design features an IP67 water and dust resistance rating.

Display

Around front, you’ll find the star of the phone -- a 5.7-inch 1440-by-2560 LCD panel with HDR support that runs at 120hz.

What does 120hz mean? Essentially, for every frame that a normal phone renders, this one renders two. This provides silky movement and extra snap in responsiveness. Reviewers indicate the difference in smoothness and response offered by 120hz is noticeable.

However, the 120hz mode only works when apps support it. So don’t expect it to work everywhere.

Reviewers applauded the phone for its excellent contrast and punchy colors. While they also note that it doesn’t compare to an AMOLED or OLED panel, most were happy with the experience when watching movies or playing games. Lastly, with a 500 nit brightness rating, there are no worries about use in brightly lit rooms or outdoors.

Performance

The Razer Phone 2 sports the popular 2.8Ghz Snapdragon 845 processor found in many of 2018’s high-end phones. Paired with 8GB of RAM, reviewers had zero issues with sluggishness, stuttering, or crashes.

The included Game Booster app also allows you to set performance and visual settings for each game to provide a balance between detailed graphics and battery life. Reviewers found the app worked as described by Razer.

Unfortunately, this performance comes heat concerns. The phone gets warm after a few minutes of game play. Reviewer opinions ranged from “warm to the touch” to “uncomfortable to hold”.

Software

The phone’s software is also a mixed bag. While it ships with Android 8.1 Oreo -- an older Android release -- it includes virtually no bloatware and offers a near-stock Android experience. Razer has promised an update to Android 9.0 Pie in early 2019.

Storage

While 64GB of internal storage is enough for the average phone user, gamers might run out of space quickly. Still, microSD card support for cards up to 1TB in size makes expanding the storage on the phone fast and affordable.

Cameras

On paper, the dual-lens rear camera looks impressive. Both lenses are 12MP but one lens is a 2x telephoto lens while the other is a wide-angle lens with optical image stabilization. In real-world use, reviewers had mixed opinions. The camera improves on the lackluster performance of the original Razer Phone but doesn’t keep up with similarly priced options from the competition.

While photos were often in focus and white balance was good, reviewers complained of washed out colors and a general lack of contrast. In low-light situations, noise and a lack of detail rendered many shots unusable.

The 8MP front-facing lens garnered similar reviews. However, it has one stand out feature -- 60 FPS recording. This makes the phone ideal for mobile gamers who might stream their game play online or record commentary.

Battery Life

The Razer Phone 2 includes a massive 4000mAh battery with USB Type-C fast charging. Quick Charge 4.0 offers a charge from empty to 50% in about 30 minutes. There’s also wireless charging.

And if you plan to play games regularly, you’ll need all the charging you can get. Reviews showed that a 2-hour gaming session would drop the phone’s battery to half capacity.

However, if you’re simply using it as a phone -- checking emails, browsing social media, and taking the occasional call -- reviewers had no problems hitting a full day from a single charge.

Audio

The phone might disappoint if you’re looking to use your favorite cans to immerse yourself in the latest games and movies. There’s no 3.5mm headphone jack. While Razer includes a 3.5mm to USB Type-C adapter, using it means you can’t charge your phone and use headphones at the same time.

However, if you don’t mind others hearing what you’re playing or listening to, the two front-facing speakers that flank the display received endless praise from reviewers. Many called them the best speakers they’d heard on a mobile phone.

Whether you’re using headphones or the speakers, Dolby Atmos is included to provide more spatial awareness -- a critical feature in games like PUBG or Fortnite. Better still, reviewers found that Atmos was more than a gimmick, allowing them to hear players sneaking up behind them or cars zooming around corners.

_

Summary

Reviewer recommendations on Razer’s latest release are mixed. On one hand, it offers stellar performance -- even if it gets warm. But battery life is only so-so when gaming and the cameras are weak compared to similarly priced options. While the phone offers a gaming experience like no other, it sacrifices ergonomics and camera quality to do so. For some reviewers, that compromise was unacceptable.

Engadget says, “If you're a person that puts gaming first, then definitely take a look at the Razer Phone 2. If you're not though, then you might want to look elsewhere.

Android Central says, “I'd recommend the Razer Phone 2 to anyone who's fully onboard to invest in mobile gaming and appreciates the ability to play the latest and greatest games as they were meant to be experienced.


Operating system
Android
Processor
2.8 GHz
Screen Size
5.7"
Camera
12+ MP


What the Critics Are Saying...


Good Gear Guide

The Razer Phone 2 feels like a phone for Razer diehards with cash to burn, and that might be a game everyone is interested in playing. 

- Fergus Halliday, Good Gear Guide
Android Central

The Razer Phone 2 keeps most that worked well with the first Razer Phone while offering a brighter display, a better (but not great) camera experience, wireless charging and a controllable RGB Chroma logo on the back just to flex. Its a more complete device overall that actually competes well agains...

- Marc Lagace, Android Central
Notebookcheck

If you are looking for something special, the Razer Phone 2 will be perfect for you, and not just because of the logo. Thus, the 120 Hz display is unique to Razer’s phone - an exotic contender in the smartphone market that depends on game developers to support this unique feature. And support it the...

- Inge Schwabe, Notebookcheck
Ausdroid

The gaming experience is good however; you’re very much at the mercy of the developers and what they bring to the platform. I also can’t really help but think it’s a solution for a problem that doesn’t really exist… if you assess it as a stand alone phone it’s actually very good, I’m just not sure t...

- Phil Tann, Ausdroid
Cnet

A short battery life and just OK photos undermine what is otherwise an amazing phone.

- Patrick Holland, Cnet


Prices (Where to Buy)




Common Questions


Razer released the Phone 2 on October 26, 2018.


The Phone 2 price will vary depending on retailer, age, special offers and whether or not it's purchased with a service plan. If purchased with a 2 year service contract for example, you would likely pay much less for the phone itself up front. You can compare Razer Phone 2 prices from around the web here on The Informr.


We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the Razer Phone 2 user manual here.


Razer backs up the Phone 2 with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.


If your Phone 2 has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Razer support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Razer's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.



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Quick view

Screen Size
5.7"

The Razer Phone 2's screen size is 5.7 inches with 1440 x 2560 pixels resolution.

Processor
2.8 GHz

There is a Qualcomm SDM845 Snapdragon 845 Octa core 2.8 GHz processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on the Android 8.1 Oreo operating system (OS).

Camera
12+ MP

You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 12+ megapixel camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 8+ megapixels resolution.

Storage
64 GB

Internal memory is 64 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC, microSDXC (up to 1000 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
4000mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 4000 mAh battery. Razer's performance ratings are 1625 minutes, 512 minutes Wi-Fi surfing.

Phone 2 Specs

Overview
Release date October 26, 2018
Regions available USA, Canada, UK
Networks
GSM:
850/900/1800/1900 MHz
CDMA:
800 MHz
UMTS:
850/900/1700/1900 /2100 MHz
LTE:
1700/1900/700/2100 /800/850/900/1800/2600/2300/2500 MHz
Data:
GPRS, EDGE, HSUPA, HSPA+, LTE
SIM card Nano-SIM
Dual SIM No
Operating System Android 8.1 Oreo

Compare Android Smartphones

Processor Qualcomm SDM845 Snapdragon 845 Octa core 2.8 GHz
Internal Flash Memory 64 GB
RAM 8 GB
ROM No
GPS Type A-GPS
Digital compass Yes
Flightmode Yes
Hearing Aid Compatible No
TTY/TDD No
Noise Cancellation Yes
SAR Head: 0.58 W/kg
Body: 0.58 W/kg
Languages English
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included USB Power Adapter, Manual, Data Cable
Power & battery
Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 4000 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging Yes
Fast Charging Yes
Video Playback Time Up to: 415 minutes
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Up to: 512 minutes
Internet Use (Celluar) Unknown
Talk Time Up to: 1625 minutes
Standby Time Up to: 23 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Bar
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA Yes
Material Glass
Colors Mirror Black, Satin Black
Dimensions [H x W x D] 15.85 x 7.899 x 0.85 cm (6.2 x 3.1 x 0.3 in)
Weight 220 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Water Resistant
Rugged design No
IP Rating IP 67
Antenna Type Internal
Changeable Faceplates No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (IPS)
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution 1440 x 2560 pixels
Pixel density 513 pixels
Size 5.7 inches
3D No
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Gyroscope
Graphics Yes
Themes Yes
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock Yes
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating Yes
Additional Display Features Capacitive touchscreen, Corning Gorilla Glass 5, 120 Hz refresh rate, Wide Color Gamut
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key Yes
Home Key No
Mute Key No
Input Type Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry Yes
Physical keyboard No
Voicemail Key No
Any Key Answer No
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor Yes
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling Yes
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) Yes
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups Yes
Auto Answer No
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols POP3, IMAP, Microsoft Exchange
Additional Email Features Gmail
Messaging SMS, MMS, IM
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
Connectivity
USB USB Type-C
USB OTG Support Yes
Infrared No
Bluetooth 5.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, AVRCP, OPP/FTP, HID, HFP, HSP, PAN
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
WiFi Encryption WEP/WPA/WPA2
Mobile Hotspot Yes
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD, MicroSDHC, microSDXC (up to 1000 GB)
PC Synchronization
TV Out No
DLNA Support No
NFC Yes
UMA Support No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications No
ECML / Digital Wallet No
PictBridge No
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
ƒ/ 1.75
Resolution
12+ megapixels
Dual lens
Yes
Zoom
2x optical
Flash
Yes (Dual LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Effects, Face detection, Geotagging, Image stabilization, ISO, Multi-shot, Panorama, Self-timer, Dual camera feature (12 MP 2nd camera, f/2.6), HDR
Video Recording Formats
MPEG-4
Video Recording Parameters
Ultra HD (3840 x 2160 pixels)
Front Camera
Resolution
8+ megapixels
Zoom
Yes
Additional Front Camera Info
Aperture f/2.0
Video Recording Parameters
Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats AAC, AAC+, AMR, eAAC+, MIDI, MP3, M4A, OGG, WMA, WAV
Radio No
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, FLV, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, WMV
Mobile TV No
Streaming Video Yes
External Speakers Stereo
Headset Jack No
Custom Ringtones Yes
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringtone Composer No
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration Yes
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List No
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch Yes
Timer Yes
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter No
Document Viewer Yes
Weather Yes
Stocks No
Maps Yes
NotePad No
Voice Memos / Recorder No
Games Downloadable
Apps Downloadable
Included Software / Apps
More
Additional comments
Related Links Manual (PDF)
Razer Phone 2 Reviews
Where to buy Razer Phone 2
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Critic Reviews


Good Gear Guide

One for the fans

from Good Gear Guide

The Razer Phone 2 feels like a phone for Razer diehards with cash to burn, and that might be a game everyone is interested in playing. 

Read full review

The Razer Phone 2 feels like a phone for Razer diehards with cash to burn, and that might be a game everyone is interested in playing. 

Read full review

Less

Android Central

Better in every way

from Android Central

The Razer Phone 2 keeps most that worked well with the first Razer Phone while offering a brighter display, a better (but not great) camera experience, wireless charging and a controllable RGB Chroma logo on the back just to flex. Its a more complete device overall that actually competes well aga...More

The Razer Phone 2 keeps most that worked well with the first Razer Phone while offering a brighter display, a better (but not great) camera experience, wireless charging and a controllable RGB Chroma logo on the back just to flex. Its a more complete device overall that actually competes well against other similarly priced smartphones — especially if you value high performance for gaming.

Read full review

Less

Notebookcheck

Overwhelming performance

from Notebookcheck

If you are looking for something special, the Razer Phone 2 will be perfect for you, and not just because of the logo. Thus, the 120 Hz display is unique to Razer’s phone - an exotic contender in the smartphone market that depends on game developers to support this unique feature. And support i...More

If you are looking for something special, the Razer Phone 2 will be perfect for you, and not just because of the logo. Thus, the 120 Hz display is unique to Razer’s phone - an exotic contender in the smartphone market that depends on game developers to support this unique feature. And support it they do - the number of games with 120 Hz support is growing fast. Maybe even fast enough to turn the exotic contender into a gaming smartphone pioneer that every mobile gamer is going to lust for.

Read full review

Less

Ausdroid

An excellent phone that missed the mark

from Ausdroid

The gaming experience is good however; you’re very much at the mercy of the developers and what they bring to the platform. I also can’t really help but think it’s a solution for a problem that doesn’t really exist… if you assess it as a stand alone phone it’s actually very good, I’m just not sure that it’s $1300 + good.

Read full review

The gaming experience is good however; you’re very much at the mercy of the developers and what they bring to the platform. I also can’t really help but think it’s a solution for a problem that doesn’t really exist… if you assess it as a stand alone phone it’s actually very good, I’m just not sure that it’s $1300 + good.

Read full review

Less

Cnet

A powerful gaming phone with a dash of flagship panache

from Cnet

A short battery life and just OK photos undermine what is otherwise an amazing phone.

Read full review

A short battery life and just OK photos undermine what is otherwise an amazing phone.

Read full review

Less

Pocket-lint

Gaming glory brings its share of compromise

from Pocket-lint

A niche proposition has some excellent features – including fast refresh rate screen and illuminating rear logo – but a design that can't hold its own against the current crop of flagships. As a stand-out device with points of difference it's sometimes brilliant though.

Read full review

A niche proposition has some excellent features – including fast refresh rate screen and illuminating rear logo – but a design that can't hold its own against the current crop of flagships. As a stand-out device with points of difference it's sometimes brilliant though.

Read full review

Less

GSMArena

Not for everyone

If you are simply looking for a great daily driver and simply stumbled here out of curiosity, our best advice is to keep looking. As a 2018 flagship Android smartphone, the Razer Phone 2 simply lags behind the competition in more than a few key aspects.

Read full review

If you are simply looking for a great daily driver and simply stumbled here out of curiosity, our best advice is to keep looking. As a 2018 flagship Android smartphone, the Razer Phone 2 simply lags behind the competition in more than a few key aspects.

Read full review

Less

Coolsmartphone

A slight upgrade but still lacking in some key areas

from Coolsmartphone

If you are into your mobile games, than the Razer Phone 2 will be a perfect phone for you. It has a huge battery, wireless charging and the amazing display. The camera on the original Razer was knocked for poor performance, but now on the Razer Phone 2 it’s much improved – now you get a very capable camera, both day and night.

Read full review

If you are into your mobile games, than the Razer Phone 2 will be a perfect phone for you. It has a huge battery, wireless charging and the amazing display. The camera on the original Razer was knocked for poor performance, but now on the Razer Phone 2 it’s much improved – now you get a very capable camera, both day and night.

Read full review

Less

TechRadar

Excellent speakers, loads of power

from TechRadar

If you’re an RGB-loving gamer who lives an overclocked life at 120Hz, then there’s a good chance the Razer Phone 2 will push your buttons. Given that our reviews aren’t just for gamers, though, luxuries like a 120Hz display and illuminating back aren’t enough to bump up its score beyond a...More

If you’re an RGB-loving gamer who lives an overclocked life at 120Hz, then there’s a good chance the Razer Phone 2 will push your buttons. Given that our reviews aren’t just for gamers, though, luxuries like a 120Hz display and illuminating back aren’t enough to bump up its score beyond a 3.5. The 16:9 aspect ratio screen feels dated, it’s a bit washed out when viewed at an angle, and the camera is only passable by today’s standards.

Read full review

Less

Engadget

Strictly for gamers

from Engadget

The Razer Phone 2 is without doubt a great phone for gamers. It has a gorgeous, buttery smooth display, punchy and robust sound, and plenty of power and battery life to keep you in the game for longer. Slight tweaks like the addition of water-resistance and a brighter display are welcome here as well.

Read full review

The Razer Phone 2 is without doubt a great phone for gamers. It has a gorgeous, buttery smooth display, punchy and robust sound, and plenty of power and battery life to keep you in the game for longer. Slight tweaks like the addition of water-resistance and a brighter display are welcome here as well.

Read full review

Less



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