With the rapid proliferation of budget and mid range handsets, we’ve seen a mixed bag of products. The Lava Iris 504q is one of the few that bends the trend by introducing a device that combines affordability with a high end design, quality. While first impressions of the handset impress, is it enough to earn a recommendation? Read on to find out.
The Lava Iris 504q is easily one of the better looking mid range handsets in the past few months. The front of the handset as expected it dominated by the large 5 inch screen.
Below the screen lie three capacitive buttons while on top is the front facing camera. A chrome earpiece grille hiding a notification LED under it can also be seen above the screen. Running around the edge of the phone is a chrome bezel that prevents the screen from lying flat.
Moving to the side of the phone, you can spot a power key on the right side of the handset while a single key volume rocker is on the left. The volume rocker can be a bit hard to press. The lower half of the handset is bereft of any buttons or ports while the microUSB port and the 3.5 mm audio jack lie on the top of the phone.
The back of the phone is made of matte finish material that doesn’t attract fingerprints at all. Beyond aesthetics, the material feels great in the hand and being grippy in nature prevents the phone from slipping. You can spot minimal Lava branding towards the middle while the 8MP camera module protrudes out towards the top. A single LED flash can be seen below it.
Overall we found the ergonomics of the handset to be really good and the quality of materials to be top notch. Single handed use is possible but you’ll need to hold the phone with both hands for text entry.
The display on the Lava Iris 504q is beautiful. The IPS LCD panel displayed well saturated colors with absolutely brilliant viewing angles. There was no significant color degradation even when viewed from extreme angles. The 720p resolution stretched over 5 inches results in a pixel density of 293 ppi which is quite respectable.
Images appear vibrant and brightness levels are more than adequate. The display also has excellent daylight visibility. This is perhaps one of the best displays we’ve seen in the budget-midrange handset segment.
The operating system on the Lava Iris 504q is Android 4.2.1 which is a point release behind some of its competitors. You’re not missing much here though.The entire interface is essentially stock Android with very minimal changes if any at all.
The only ‘changes’ done by Lava are the inclusion of a few shortcuts to download games like Modern Warfare. We like this approach of providing a refreshingly clean and bloatware free system to the user. Not only does it look good, it also helps keep running things fast. Larger players like Samsung would do well to learn from their indigenous competitors and tone down TouchWiz on future devices.
The Lava Iris 504q is powered by a 1.2Ghz quad core processor that is paired with 1GB of RAM for multitasking. In day to day use, the phone never felt lacking in power and interface elements remain absolutely smooth even during heavy multitasking. Synthetic benchmarks place the handset amongst the lower performing devices but the difference is minimal at best and our experience with the phone was good. You can see the rest of the benchmarks here.
In the Quadrant benchmark, the phone scores 3946 points and lags behind most of the competition.
In the GPU centric Nenamark benchmark, the handset managed to score 45.5 FPS which places it amongst the top three devices in its category.
The camera unit on the phone has an 8MP sensor. An LED flash is available to assist in poor lighting conditions. We were pleasantly surprised by the images from the camera.
The camera managed to get the exposure correct even in challenging scenarios which isn’t something we get to see in mid range handsets.
The close up mode works particularly well with the camera managing to get a focus lock very quickly. Noise levels are kept well under control and the results are generally very pleasing.
The camera on the Lava Iris 504q does an admirable job of keeping noise under control in poor lighting conditions like above and managed to take usable images.
Connectivity & Battery Life
The handset is equipped with 4GB of storage but it is possible to expand this via the microSD card slot. The handset has dual SIM card slots as expected.
Sensors onboard include G Sensor, Motion sensor and Proximity sensor. The handset supports WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth, USB OTG, GPS. The battery rated at 2000 mAh gets you through a work day but we do wish that Lava had opted for a higher capacity unit.
The Lava Iris 504q is definitely one of the best handsets that you can get in the sub 15,000 rupees range. We found the build quality and the screen to be top notch. Day to day performance too was nothing to sneeze at.
Lava could have provided a higher capacity battery but even then, the handset is capable of lasting a work day. Definitely recommended.
Relatively small battery