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Lenovo Legion Phone Duel Review: stylish Outside, Savage Inside

Lenovo Legion Phone Duel Review: stylish Outside, Savage Inside 20

The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is the first gaming smartphone launched by Lenovo recently. Upon release, its ambitious aim was to go head to head against the ASUS ROG Phone 3. We unboxed this gaming phone a while ago and tried it out for a couple of weeks. Fast forward to today, here’s what we have to say about the device.

Design and Outlook

Lenovo Legion Phone Duel hand showing a blue phone

The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel has a very distinctive design, especially on its back. The back of the device is filled with reflective stripes merging into the center to look like an “X”. Breaking the norm, Lenovo placed the rear camera on the back, off-centred leaning to the right, with the flash module sitting on top of the Y RGB logo that is placed on the center.

Right on top of it is the camera hatch with a Legion logo on it. Lenovo wanted to implement a stylish gamer-esque change to its smartphone design, but I would’ve preferred if Lenovo went with a more subtle design. When I first held it in my hands, I had mixed feelings. It looks very interesting, but very confusing too at the same time. In contrast, the 16GB RAM Red & Black version looks much sleeker in comparison with this 12GB RAM Black & Blue version.

image showing a phone bottom display bezel

Flipping to the front the frame of the phone has an edgy touch to it with a blue frame and a black bezel containing the 6.65-inch display between the top and bottom speakers.

Savage Performance

The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is packed with a 3.1 GHz high-frequency CPU in the speed-binned Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus processor accompanied by a Qualcomm Adreno 650 GPU, and 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM. The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is optimized to run games at top performance without lag especially when you stream games through your mobile while you play.

gaming holding the Lenovo Legion Phone Duel

Most phones that are optimized for gaming do have a overheating problem over long hours of gaming, especially when you are gaming and charging your phone at the same time. The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel includes a dual-liquid cooling system that prevents the phone from heating up when overclocking for performance. The device also comes with WiFi 6 and 5G connectivity make sure that you stay connected during games without disconnecting from the servers.

Y-triggers of Lenovo Legion Phone Duel

The back case has a smooth matte feel on both sides where the fingers are rested to prevent uncomfortable stickiness on your hands over holding the phone for a long period of time due to sweat.

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Rested on both ends of the frame when holding the phone vertically are the Y-Triggers, which is very similar to ROG Phone’s Air Triggers. However, when we compare the touch and feel between both of them, the Y-Triggers lack texture so it is hard to feel if you are tapping on the right area. That aside, they have the same features that act as a shortcut button for gaming purposes and of course, you can customize them accordingly to the game you want to use them in, e.g. Call of Duty: Mobile and etc.

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The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel tucked an interesting feature within its settings, which is the 4D Gesture. You can now turn on your camera by twisting the phone and the torchlight by waving it as if chopping in air. However, this shortcut is fixed with the mentioned applications. It would be useful if we could bind these gestures for other apps in the future, for example launching a music app or e-wallet for quick access.

Turbo-Charging Dual Battery

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The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is packed with a 5,000mAh battery, which to me, is fairly small for a gaming phone. The company split the battery in two 2,500mAh batteries, with dual Type-C ports which enables you to fast charge both batteries at the same time.

While charging simultaneously, you are able to fully charge the phone within 45 mins and charge up to 50% capacity within 30 mins. Some might worry about heating issue when batteries are being charged at the same time, but the dual liquid, mid- thermal, floating cooling system is built in the phone for better thermal distribution, where you don’t feel the heat on your palms even with both Type-C cables plugged in to charge. The side charging port also enables ease to charge while you are still gaming without disrupting your grip on the phone.

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Video-Ready Front Camera

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The front camera is hidden right under the hatch as a pop-up camera that shows when it is needed. I found this to be very helpful for mobile game streamers as most phones have their front camera on the top bezel where your fingers will be blocking you while gaming. Having a pop-up camera instead of an in-screen camera does assure you that the camera is running when you need it as well as when it is off when you don’t want it to be recording.

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Apart from streaming, the placement of the front camera enables content creators to take videos in horizontal orientation just like cameras do. The middle camera ensures that the video/photo taken with the front camera is angled correctly instead of being slightly slanted due to the front camera being placed on the left or right of the screen when holding it horizontally. I find this convenient for video recording, especially when you are shooting VLOGs when you are going around places.

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Apart from that, the Legion Realm dashboard has a game streaming quick button which is very useful for streamers to set-up their streaming screen. With the settings available, you can move your talking head video overlay to position it at where you want it to appear in-stream/video. It can also use AR features to add a mask on your face while you stream games, as well as blend your background into the game screen display. Turn on this feature and connect it up with your streaming app like Streamlabs and you are ready to go live. You can also use this feature along with the back recording feature in the Legion Realm dashboard to pre-record gameplay footage to be edited later.

The 20MP front camera is also complemented with quad-mic noise cancellation, and beautification software which optimizes need for streamers and content creators to stream or shoot videos anytime, anywhere.

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The two rear-facing cameras are armed with 64MP ultra high-definition and 16MP ultrawide-angle camera are settled in the middle of the back chassis which also optimizes photos and videos to be taken horizontally. Here are some sample photos taken using the phone’s rear camera.

Lenovo Legion Phone Duel Specification

SpecsLenovo Legion Phone Duel
CPUQualcomm® Snapdragon™ 865 Plus 5G Mobile Platform
GPUQualcomm® Adreno™ 650
RAM12 GB LPDDR5
Storage256GB
UFS 3.1
Display6.65 inches, 19.5:9 (2340 x 1080)
144Hz / FHD+ AMOLED
Camera (Rear)64MP rear-facing ultrahigh-definition
16MP rear-facing ultrawide-angle
Camera (Front)20MP front-facing (horizontal pop-up)
BatteryDual 2500mAh batteries
Supports Dual Turbo Charging
Connectivity802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax (2.4G &5G, 2 x 2 MIMO)
WiFi 6
NFC
Bluetooth® 5.0
OSAndroid™ 10
ZUI 12
Legion OS
SpeakerDual front-facing speakers
Quad-microphone system with Qualcomm® Noise Reduction Technology
Dimensions169.17mm x 78.48mm x 9.9mm
Weight239g

Pricing And Availability

The Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is currently available in Malaysia, you can check them out here. There are two different variants available, which are the 12GB + 256GB in Black & Blue priced at RM3,399, as well as the 16GB + 512GB in Black & Red priced at RM3,999.

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