ASUS ZenFone 4 Max Lite Review (ZC520KL, X00HD)

The Asus Zenfone 4 Max series has weathered most of its competition in its price segment. Despite the fact that the standard Zenfone 4 is having a hard time in it's assigned block, the Zenfone 4 Max proved to be one of the major runners in the battery department. The Zenfone 4 Max Lite, a shed-down version of the popular handset, has been released in the Philippines last month, and it has been getting all the attention with its battery capacity, dual-camera setup, and attractive price tag.

Zenfone 4 Max Lite Review Philippines

After using the handset for a few weeks now, join us in this review of the ASUS Zenfone 4 Max Lite, and see if the handset has what it takes to be your next smartphone.


ASUS Zenfone 4 Max Lite Review

Zenfone 4 Max Lite Review Philippines ZC520KL


The handset's design does not differ from its bigger brother. But make no mistake, there are several takeaways with its design that we loved. Looking at it, the Zenfone 4 Max Lite still got the subtle curves in the corners which makes it easy on the eyes. Upfront, the glass panel is treated with 2.5D curved glass. The back is a faux-metal panel which exudes elegance. It also highlights the ASUS branding which is positioned in the upper center of the back. 

ASUS Zenfone 4 Max Lite Review Philippines

Speaking of the back panel, ASUS is generous enough to deploy a dual-camera setup to the Zenfone 4 Max Lite. Facing the display, you'll see the volume rocker and the power button on the right; while the SIM tray is on the left side.

Zenfone 4 Max Lite Review

Likewise, the speaker, primary microphone, and the microUSB port are housed on the bottom side. Meanwhile, the 3.5mm audio jack is positioned at the top side.

The design exceeds our impressions in terms of ergonomics and usability. It is compact enough to offer ease of use to users with small hands like me. It is also worth-noting that the device is not a fingerprint magnet. For a phone with 4100 mAh battery, I could say that the handset is on the light side, weighing 156 grams.

Hardware, Benchmarks

The Zenfone 4 Max Lite is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon with 1.4GHz quad-core CPU and Adreno 308 GPU. It also comes with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of native storage, but you'll only get roughly 8GB for your multimedia files due to system requirements and preinstalled apps. But you can expand memory via microSD, up to 256GB.

Certainly, the smartphone is very capable to give power for all-day tasks. Most of time, the handset is snappy and smooth when dealing with light to moderate tasks. I have to say that I could experience occasional lags but not to the point that it'll disrupt my productivity.

Our benchmark results show that the Zenfone 4 Max Lite is a worker. It garnered an Antutu Benchmark score of 43267, and PCMark Work performance score of 3383.

In Geekbench 4 CPU benchmark, it tallied a Single-core score of 679 and a Multi-core score of 1809. The Compute Benchmark test which measures GPU performance gave the ZF4 Max Lite a 1392 score.


The ASUS Zenfone 4 Max Lite packs a high-definition display that punches the 5.2-inch IPS panel with 282 ppi pixel density. Sunlight visibility is quite good, as well as viewing angles. However, if I am to nitpick, I could tell that the display produces a green tint when seen on the right oblique angles. 

Other than that, color reproduction is great. Images come with good color accuracy, texts are legible, and touch sensitivity is precise.


Due to its namesake, the handset is definitely a worker in terms of battery life. But what surprised me is the fact that it can take decent photos and bokeh shots considering its price standpoint. The Zenfone 4 Max Lite boasts a dual-lens setup comprised of 13MP main shooter and a 5MP wide-angle sensor. It comes with several shooting modes like Auto, Beautification, Pro, Super Resolution, GIF, Animation, Panorama, and Timelapse. Despite its sub-Php 8K price, the handset features a capable camera module.

It's fast to focus on subjects. In a well-lighted environment, the camera produces sharp images with good color saturation and reproduction. This means that outputs are vibrant and come with decent detail. The handset could also produce good bokeh shots with its dedicated Portrait mode.

In low-light, the LED flash could help light up subjects. However, the camera is not consistent when it comes to low-light performance.  Check out our camera samples below.

Standard Shot

Wide-Angle Shot

Standard Shot

Wide Angle Shot

Standard Shot

Wide Angle Shot

Portrait Mode

Portrait Mode: Food Photography

Standard Shot Indoor

Standard Shot Outdoor

Indoor Shot Wide-Angle 

Low-light Indoor
Low-light Indoor Wide Angle

Low-light Outdoor

From left: Selfie without Beautification, and Selfie with Beautification

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ASUS Beautification is my favorite when it comes to selfie software. It has ample toggles for face feature adjustments that is now found in any other beautification suite. Selfies using the 8MP camera are surprisingly good even without Beautification. Additionally, you can also use Selfie Panorama and GIF Animation using the selfie camera.

From Left: Rear Camera Modes, Front Camera Modes, Filters

Gaming and Multimedia

Most light-graphic gaming titles run smoothly with the Zenfone 4 Max Lite. Titles like Mobile Legends and Arena of Valor run smoothly in this handset. However, trying to toggle these games in high settings will take a toll on the graphic rendering, leaving some lags and frame skipping along the process. 

Bombarding the processor by opening several apps and multitasking, we have concluded that the phone has good RAM management. Although we experience occasional choking, but the chipset has its own way of recovering in a small amount of time.

I am mostly using the phone in Audio and Video playback. I enjoyed my time streaming with Netflix and Spotify using the phone. The Speakers is not that defined but it's something that I would not complain in this price standpoint. You may use external speakers or earphones to optimize multimedia experience.


In our PCMark Battery Performance test, the Zenfone 4 Max Lite scores 12 hours and 47 minutes. This test measures the battery life of the device under everyday working conditions.

In our video loop test, the handset lasted 10 hours and 26 minutes. It played a 41-minute video 15 times before it hit the sack.

In my experience in normal to moderate use of the handset, it can easily manage to last more than a day.


The ZenUI 4.0 based on Android 7.1.1 Nougat is much cleaner than the previous releases of the company's proprietary skin. There are now significantly less bloatwares. The new skin has several useful features like the Touch Gestures wherein you can double tap to turn off screen, swipe up to wake your device, etc. You can also assign certain gestures to open an app. The software also allows you to use Motion Gestures and One Hand Mode.

ASUS customized suites like Game Genie and Touch Key also prove themselves to be useful. Other essential features are available in the Notification Center like RAM cleanup and Flashlight. The ever loyal Ultra Saving Mode will squeeze your battery whenever you need longer phone mileage. Of course, the Manage Home menu is still there when you swipe up in the Home screen. The ZenUI 4.0 might be cleaner but there are still some bloatwares that need to be eliminated.

The Wrap

The ASUS Zenfone 4 Max Lite brings most of the features we love about the Zenfone 4 Max in a lower price standpoint. The Zenfone 4 Max Lite continues the legacy of the Max line by giving great battery efficiency and longevity. 

The dual-lens camera is also a welcome feature to those who wanted to experience Bokeh effect on their photos. With these features on the table, ASUS wanted users to experience the some flagship-grade features in a more affordable price. Of course, the smartphone has minor flaws such as low available storage, speaker quality, greenish tint in display, among others. However, for its price, I couldn't complain more. The ASUS ZenFone 4 Max Lite is a solid phone in its own right.

What we like:

Great battery life and efficiency
Dual-camera set-up with wide-angle
Portrait mode with Bokeh effect
Fast fingerprint sensor
Affordable pricing

What we don't like

Outdated processor, low RAM
Low available storage
Greenish tint on display (in extreme angles)

ASUS ZenFone 4 Max Lite Specs

5.2-inch 16:9 HD IPS LCD, 720 x 1280 at 282 ppi 
Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 SoC
1.4GHz quad-core processor
Adreno 308 GPU
2GB of RAM
16GB internal storage, expandable up to 256GB
13MP + 5MP dual rear cameras with LED flash
Up to 1080p video capture @30 FPS
8MP selfie camera with softlight LED flash
Dual Nano SIM, Dedicated slot for microSD card
4G LTE, 3G, 2G
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.1
Fingerprint Scanner
OTG Support
Android 7.1.1 Nougat with ZenUI 4.0
150.5 x 73.3 x 8.8 mm, 156 grams
4,100mAh battery
Black, Gold
Php 7,995 Official Price in the Philippines
with free case
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