ByLinky Johnson 2019-05-05 302
The second smartphone from Black Shark Technology, the Helo completes Xiaomi's gaming range. With some welcome new features, it also introduces new accessories. We had the chance to meet him, here are our first impressions.
This year, among the newcomers, Black Shark made its mark on the smartphone market. This brand has come, in a roundabout way, to support the Chinese manufacturer's entry into the gaming smartphone market. Xiaomi has invested in the Chinese company Black Shark Technology, which is now part of the Mi ecosystem. Second model of the Chinese brand, we had the chance to discover the Black Shark Helo.
The first characteristic of the Helo: this back shell, which is still very recognizable, the Black Shark Helo has inherited the X-shaped design of the first generation. The central frame is made of metal with a glass plate in the centre. Personally, I find this look much more pleasant than the first model, less rough and more sober. Finally, the Black Shark LED logo is anything but simple, not to mention the clear green lines that remind us of Razer's identity. Moreover, the Black Shark Helo could very well have been created by Razer - the Razer Phone 2 makes much less gaming despite its 120 Hz screen.
You get the same camera combination as the first Black Shark of the name: 12 megapixels (f/1.75) and 20 megapixels. These cameras are now vertically aligned along the center above the rear fingerprint reader. The front camera is 20 megapixels (f/2.2).
The display is one of the most important features of the Black Shark Helo and the company has replaced the first generation IPS LCD display. Indeed, it comes with a Samsung AMOLED display of 6 inches diagonal, a definition of 2160 × 1080 compatible with a wide range of DCI-P3 colors as well as 10-bit HDR compatibility. With the independent Black Shark image processing chip, it can - in theory - display a wider range of colours. It is impossible to check it without using our probe and some additional tools. In any case, this feature is rare on smartphones available on the market. Finally, the display ratio is 18:9. No notch, Black Shark prefers to display thicker screen borders than most 2018 smartphones, but the system will not have to handle additional complexity for mobile games. Finally, this screen is not 120 Hz, like Razer Phone 2, but 60 Hz.
It should be noted that the Black Shark Helo uses a dual SPK device to achieve a true stereo effect. Moreover, it should be noted that the front speaker is not blocked by the hand when held in landscape mode.
The most interesting part of this pack is the Bluetooth game accessory. With the phone in the supplied protective case, you can slide two accessories along the top of the phone, giving you more precise thumb control with the joystick and buttons, while giving you full screen visibility.
The Black Shark, the first of its kind, came with a joystick that was installed on the side of the device. The new model features two accessories that can be inserted on both sides of the smartphone to provide a grip closer to that of a game controller. However, the second accessory was not available on the model we had in hand. It is a small touch pad with additional physical buttons.
Gamer Studio also allows you to adjust different parameters according to the titles you play, one of the good ideas is to be able to share profiles with the community of players using these accessories.
Black Shark is considering porting its gaming ecosystem to other smartphones, its dedicated software suite and its accessories. Imagine these accessories for a Samsung Galaxy S or Xiaomi Mi, not to mention the iPhone.
Another special feature of this smartphone is the use of a clever steam chamber cooling system to accompany the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845. Moreover, we quickly realize it: the smartphone doesn't get very hot, in games or benchmark sessions.
What's new this time is that everything else has received a little boost under this relatively more discreet hood, with a RAM of 6 to 10 GB (LPDDR4X, 1 866 MHz) and a storage space of 64 GB to 256 GB (UFS 2.1).
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