Most gamers will probably revel in Shark Space, a dedicated gaming zone that cuts you off from notifications and digs deep to take full advantage of the phone’s heavy duty hardware.

Black Shark 2 review Hardcore gamer Then this device is tailor-made for you
Atom Smartphones Friday, August 16, 2019 - 16:33

The first thing I did after unboxing the Black Shark 2 was to toggle the green tinged Shark key on the right spine of the device and step right into Shark Space. It’s taken a while but Black Shark, the Xiaomi backed gaming smartphone brand has finally kept its date in India. Black Shark was set up in 2017 as a gaming technology company driven by seasoned hardware engineers, designers and gamers. Black Shark 2 is the first device to be officially available in India even as the chatter builds around the company’s upcoming Black Shark 2 Pro. Is this the best smartphone for compulsive gamers?

Most of these gamers will probably revel in Shark Space, a dedicated gaming zone that cuts you off from notifications and digs deep to take full advantage of the phone’s heavy duty hardware. Qualcomm’s best of breed Snapdragon 855 processor is at the heart of this device. There’s a 12GB/256GB variant and a 6GB/128GB hardware version that we tested. I’m more partial to Asphalt 9 over PUBG but both games were an absolute fun ride on this device. A quick diagonal swipe within a game activates the Gamer Studio dock with a whole bunch of gaming tools including performance (Ludicrous mode maxes this out), audio and touch settings. You can also buy the Black Shark 2.0 gamepad (sold separately) that complements the device as a console controller. 

Black Shark flaunts quite a few gaming-driven features for this device. I found a couple of them making a perceptible difference in actual usage. The Mille-Feuille Full Area Liquid Cooling System, that is used in high-end PC gaming rigs to reduce core temperatures (up to 14°C according to Black Shark) kept the device from excessive heating during extended gaming. And then there’s the world’s lowest latency touch (43.5 ms), that worked really well for quick input responses in action games like PUBG. 

What about occasional gamers? The types who barely manage 30 minutes a day as they battle work deadlines and other pressures. The 4000 mAh battery will certainly please them - it powers up in about 90 minutes and lasted more than a day in our tests with about 45 minutes of Asphalt 9 and PUBG. The other big win is the build. This might boil down to personal preferences but in a world full of textured backs and bling, the glass and metal blend of the Black Shark 2 stands apart. At 205 gms, it’s no lightweight but it feels really good in your hands and the glowing green S logo adds to its cool quotient. 

The 6.39-inch TrueView Display (19.5:9 aspect ratio / 1080 x 2340 pixels) with vibrant colours is backed by stereo speakers, making this a great screen for video content. There’s no 3.5mm headphone slot though. The camera is a mixed bag. There’s a dual rear cam (48MP + 12MP) and a 20MP selfie shooter. Images and videos we shot in optimal light were sharp but the quality dips in lowlight with no dedicated night mode and the lack of OIS (optical image stabilisation). The Black Shark 2 is one of the best devices out there for hardcore gamers but if you’re looking beyond just hardware prowess and stellar design and if camera performance is a deal breaker, there are quite a few options at this price point. 

The Black Shark 2 costs Rs 39,999 (6GB/128GB) / Rs 49,999 (12GB/256GB) and is available in Frozen Silver and Shadow Black. 

Ashwin Rajagopalan writes extensively on Gadgets & Trends, Travel & Lifestyle and Food & Drink. He owns and manages Brand Stories, a creative Content outfit and, a premier lifestyle blog with a focus on short-format content. Instagram: ‘ashwinpowers’) 

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