HTC One Max review: Supersized

Orlin Milinov, 14 October 2013.
Pages: 123456789101112

Tags: HTC, Android

Fingerprint sensor

One of the cool new features brought by the HTC One Max is the fingerprint sensor on its back. Unlike Apple's implementation, this one requires you to slide your finger over it, rather than just hold it on top, but it is still quick and accurate enough. The One Max recognizes up to three fingers, which is even more limiting than Apple's Touch ID maximum of five records.

HTC One Max
The fingerprint settings

As a value-added feature you can assign an app to each stored fingerprint so it gets activated automatically with the screen unlock. That way you can have your index finger launch the phone app, your middle finger launch the camera, and have another finger simply unlock the Max. Unfortunately, those shortcuts are no longer available once you unlock the phablet, which we find to be quite disappointing.

HTC One Max HTC One Max
You can select a default app for each fingerprint

To set a fingerprint you need to swipe three times on the sensor. That kinda reminded us of the first times we saw fingerprint sensors on phones - the Toshiba G900 had a similar learning setup.

HTC One Max HTC One Max HTC One Max HTC One Max
Saving a fingerprint

Unlike the G900, the One Max sensor is pretty accurate, but because you need to do a swipe gesture, not just tap and hold, we find it slower than Apple's solution. There are some occasions when you are in a hurry and you are just not slow enough for the sensor to read your finger, which has the potential of getting in your way.

There is a quick setting for the Fingerprint reader in the Notification Quick Settings pane. It will take you straight to input a new fingerprint screen if you have a free fingerprint slot.

As usual, before you setup a fingerprint lock, you will be asked to enter a password for security reasons. In case you are unable to use the fingerprint scanner, you can unlock the device with that password.

Synthetic benchmarks and performance

HTC One Max runs on the Snapdragon 600 chipset - the same ticking inside the HTC One and inside at least one variant of the Samsung Galaxy S4. It has four Krait 300 cores clocked at 1.7GHz, Adreno 320 is in charge of graphics and there are 2GB or RAM.

As usual our first test is all about single-core performance. The Krait 300 score is on par with the S600-running Galaxy S4 devices.

Benchmark Pi

Lower is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    99
  • LG G2
    99
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    115
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    115
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    130
  • HTC One Max
    131
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    132
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    132
  • HTC Butterfly S
    135
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    147
  • HTC One
    151
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    166
  • Sony Xperia Z
    264
  • HTC Butterfly
    266
  • Oppo Find 5
    267
  • HTC One X+
    280
  • LG Optimus G
    285
  • HTC One mini
    293
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    305
  • HTC One X (Tegra 3)
    330
  • LG Optimus 4X HD
    350
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    359
  • Nexus 4
    431

HTC One Max repeats the result from our previous test, performing equally to the S600 gang on the multi-threaded version of Linpack.

Linpack

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    1081
  • LG G2
    1054
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    1034
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    1004
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    818
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    791
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    788
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    743
  • HTC One Max
    723
  • HTC Butterfly S
    669
  • HTC One
    646
  • Sony Xperia Z
    630
  • HTC Butterfly
    624
  • LG Optimus G
    608
  • Oppo Find 5
    593
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    413
  • HTC One mini
    320
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    214.3
  • Nexus 4
    213.5
  • HTC One X+
    177.7
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    175.5
  • HTC One X
    160.9
  • LG Optimus 4X HD
    141.5

GeekBench 3 is a popular CPU benchmark, where the One Max scores a hair below the original HTC One.

Geekbench 3

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    2937
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    2670
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    2638
  • Apple iPhone 5s
    2561
  • LG G2
    2243
  • HTC One
    1972
  • HTC One Max
    1899
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    1869
  • LG Optimus G
    1623
  • Huawei Ascend P6
    1315
  • LG Nexus 4
    1288
  • HTC Butterfly
    1257
  • Oppo R819
    1047
  • HTC One mini
    887

Quadrant and AnTuTu 4 gauge the overall device performance instead of just the CPU and the One Max managed to produce the same results the HTC One did earlier this year.

Quadrant

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia Z1
    20388
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    20052
  • LG G2
    19815
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    18177
  • HTC Butterfly S
    13130
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    12446
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    12376
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    12105
  • HTC One Max
    11914
  • HTC One
    11746
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    11346
  • Sony Xperia Z
    8075
  • HTC One X+
    7632
  • LG Optimus G
    7439
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    7153
  • Oppo Find 5
    7111
  • HTC One mini
    6048
  • HTC One X
    5952
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    5916
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    5450
  • Nexus 4
    4567

AnTuTu 4

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    31109
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    30850
  • LG G2
    30243
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    29185
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
    27613
  • HTC One
    26389
  • HTC One Max
    26348
  • LG Nexus 4
    17006

We've put the Adreno 320 GPU through the GFX Benchmark. It did as we expected - decent, on par with the S600 Galaxies and One, but noticeably slower than the S800's Adreno 330.

GLBenchmark 2.5 Egypt (1080p off-screen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    68
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    60
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    60
  • Apple iPhone 5s
    56
  • LG G2
    54
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    43
  • HTC Butterfly S
    42
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    41
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    41
  • HTC One Max
    41
  • HTC One
    37
  • Oppo Find 5
    32
  • Google Nexus 4
    32
  • Sony Xperia Z
    31
  • Sony Xperia ZL
    31
  • Sony Xperia SP
    31
  • Apple iPhone 5
    30
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    30
  • LG Optimus G
    21
  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3
    17
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    17
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    17
  • HTC One mini
    15
  • HTC One X
    11

GLBenchmark 2.7 T-Rex (1080p off-screen)

Higher is better

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    26
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    23
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    23
  • Apple iPhone 5s
    23
  • LG G2
    22
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    17.1
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    17.1
  • Apple iPad 4
    16.8
  • HTC Butterfly S
    16
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    16
  • HTC One Max
    14
  • Google Nexus 10
    13.9
  • LG Optimus G
    13.9
  • Sony Xperia Z
    13.5
  • Sony Xperia Tablet Z
    13
  • Sony Xperia ZL
    12.8
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    6.4
  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3
    6.3
  • HTC One mini
    5.6
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    4.9

The updated Epic Citadel benchmark has the new Ultra High Quality setting and we've re-tested every 1080p device we possibly could. The One Max scored just a whisker below the HTC One.

Epic Citadel

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia Z1
    54.9
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    54.9
  • LG G2
    51
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    47.7
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    37.2
  • HTC One
    35.6
  • HTC One Max
    34.9
  • HTC Butterfly
    29.6

The JavaScript performance of the HTC One Max is decent, though the SunSpider score is the lowest we've seen on a Snapdragon 600 device.

SunSpider

Lower is better

  • Apple iPhone 5s
    403
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    587
  • Apple iPhone 5
    694
  • Apple iPhone 5c
    704
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    750
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    845
  • LG G2
    908
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    1046
  • HTC One
    1174
  • HTC One Max
    1295
  • LG Optimus G
    1293
  • HTC One mini
    1375
  • LG Nexus 4
    1379
  • HTC Butterfly
    1397
  • Oppo R819
    1423
  • Huawei Ascend P6
    3858

The combined BrowserMark 2 benchmark showed the HTC One Max is once again on par with the rest of the S600 gang.

BrowserMark 2

Higher is better

  • Apple iPhone 5s
    3549
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    3041
  • Apple iPhone 5
    2825
  • Apple iPhone 5c
    2799
  • LG G2
    2718
  • LG Optimus G
    2555
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    2438
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    2419
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    2398
  • HTC Butterfly S
    2378
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    2338
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    2314
  • HTC One
    2262
  • HTC One Max
    2243
  • Sony Xperia Tablet Z
    2170
  • HTC One mini
    2164
  • Sony Xperia ZL
    2107
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2093
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    1801
  • Oppo Find 5
    1797
  • Nexus 4
    1794
  • Nokia Lumia 920
    1774
  • Google Nexus 10
    1773
  • HTC Butterfly
    1475
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    1247

Finally, the HTC One did better on Vellamo than the original One and on par with the Butterfly S.

Vellamo

Higher is better

  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    2944
  • LG G2
    2908
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    2904
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    2853
  • HTC Butterfly S
    2592
  • HTC One Max
    2523
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    2418
  • HTC One
    2382
  • HTC One mini
    2252
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2189
  • HTC One X (Tegra 3)
    2078
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (S600)
    2060
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (Octa)
    2056
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    2019
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
    1936
  • HTC Butterfly
    1866
  • Oppo Find 5
    1658
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
    1641
  • LG Optimus 4X HD
    1568
  • LG Optimus G
    1522
  • Nexus 4
    1310

So, HTC One Max performs exactly as well as you would expect from a Snapdragon 600 device. This is no longer Qualcomm's top-of-the-line chipset, but it delivers excellent lag-free user experience that won't disappoint anyone. The latest top-notch games won't pose much challenge either.

Still, the Snapdragon 800 shows its superiority when it comes to web browsing speed and app loading times. It's not a choice between good and bad performance, more like between great and the best, but when you are shopping in this price range the best is often the only one good enough.

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