Karbonn Titanium S9 review – quad core powered but can record 720p videos only

Karbonn Titanium S9 is a 1.2GHz quad core handset with a bigger 5.5 inch screen supporting HD resolution. This handset comes with 1GB RAM and 16GB storage. Titanium S9 is priced at approx Rs. 16,200.

Box Pack
The box pack contains the handset with a 5.5 inch screen, a free flip cover, data cable, power adapter, earphone, battery of 2600 mAh capacity, warranty booklet and user manual. There is no screen guard included.

Design, Display and OS
The handset looks pretty much like Samsung mobile phones with almost similar design. You can check the video review wherein I have shown the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 along with the Karbonn Titanium S9 handset. The S9 is slightly bigger (weighs around 176 grams) than the Note 2 but other aspects (thickness, looks) are almost similar. In fact it’s hard to distinguish between the two, unless you get a look at the logos. The rear side is white color with glossy finish.

The micro USB port and 3.5mm audio jack is placed on the top side, power / lock button on the left side and volume rockers on the right side. There is the mic on the bottom side. On the rear side you will find the 12MP auto focus camera with LED flash.

karbonn S9 box pack

The key USP of Karbonn S9 is the big 5.5 inch IPS screen with 1280×720 pixels (16M colors). The touch is smooth and responsive. Viewing angles are okay. This dual SIM handset runs on Android 4.2. The user interface is different, simple and pretty impressive.

Memory and storage
The handset is loaded with 1GB RAM and 16GB storage. There is micro SD card slot that supports 32GB cards. When you switch on the handset for the first time the free RAM is 633MB. Of the 16GB internal space around 1GB is allocated for apps and 13 is available as phone storage. Apps cannot be installed on the external storage. OTG is also not supported.

karbonn titanium S9 unboxing

Performance and Benchmark
The Titanium S9 is powered by 1.2GHZ MediaTek MT6589 quad core processor with PowerVR SGX 544MP GPU. This smartphone however cannot record videos in 1080p resolution. So does it come with MT6589M chipset or is it the usual MT6589 that is capable of recording videos in FHD resolution?

MT6589M supports maximum qHD resolution, so it has to be the MT6589 chipset because of the HD screen resolution support. I am not sure why Karbonn has limited the camera video recording capabilities to max 720p.

karbonn S9 camera

Benchmark Scores

  • Quadrant Standard – 4913.
  • AnTuTu – 13594.
  • Vellamo – HTML5 1567, Metal 522.
  • Nenamark 2 – 45.1 fps
  • Multi touch : 5 points.

Camera and entertainment
There is 12MP rear camera with flash but on the box its mentioned 13MP, but that hardly matters. There is 5MP front camera too. The rear camera is auto focus and shoots pretty good images; you can check the sample at the end. The night streetlight shot also looks good. The camera can record videos in 720p resolution only and the quality is also very good. You can play full HD videos using MX player.

Gaming
I played the asphalt 7 that worked pretty smooth. Even the Dead Trigger 2 and the Modern Combat 4 games played smooth. All of these games were installed on the internal storage space; you cannot install apps / games on external storage.

Others
Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3G worked well. Should not be an issue getting the GPS lock within 40 seconds. The sound is loud and clear. The handset does get heated up just like other handsets. When shooting still images and videos outdoor in direct sunlight the temperature rose to max 43 degree.

2600 mAh battery
On a full charge the battery should last for over a day with moderate usage.

karbonn S9 2600 mAh battery

Battery test:
Game-play for 14 minutes battery dropped by 5% and temp increased to max 35 degree.
Ran benchmark tool for approx 18 minutes the battery dropped by 5% and max temp was 34 degree.

Verdict
The Karbonn Titanium S9 dual SIM, quad core handset is priced at Rs. 17,000 you can get it for as low as under Rs. 16,500. It is with the same hardware MT6589 MediaTek quad core that powered the hot selling Micromax A116 and the Lava iris 504q. The S9 USP is the 16GB storage and the 5.5 inch screen with HD resolution. Though the battery capacity is also very good it is needed for a bigger screen. The price seems too high for the specifications. The specs are a little better than the A116 and 504q and the pricing should have been a little more than what these handsets are selling for. The Micromax Canvas Magnus A117 is a tough competitor to the Titanium S9.

Image Gallery

Sample images shot using this handset

Karbonn Titanium S9 unboxing and review video

HD video shot using the S9 handset

Dead Trigger 2, Asphalt 7 and Modern combat 4 game play

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