Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) review: The powerpack device

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) review: The powerpack device


4.5 out of 5
4 out of 5
4.5 out of 5
Battery Backup
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value for Money


4.2 out of 5


  • Pros:

    Slim design
    Premium build
    Decent battery life
    Reverse-charging option
    Comprehensible interface

  • Cons:

    Inferior display
    Mediocre camera

  • Conclusion:

    The Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) is a great new upgrade of the smartphone that overcame the low-battery fear among users.

Smartphone vendors are on a quest to deliver sufficient battery life on their offerings. However, in the midst of the ongoing research, Asus brought its Zenfone Max last year. That bulky Zenfone came with a massive 5,000mAh battery which not just fulfilled essential use cases but also enabled an option to power other devices. The Taiwanese giant designed a couple of upgrades to the original model that was unveiled in August last year. But until now, the Zenfone Max portfolio had some hefty options. This shifted the market focus towards slimmer models, including Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 and LeEco Le 2. Asus learnt this pretty well and has now debuted with the Zenfone 3 Max.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) review

Asus Zenfone 3 Max

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL)

We started using the Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) following its launch in India a couple of months back. This extensive usage helped us construct a detailed review here.

What’s in the Box

The Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) comes at a price of Rs. 12,999.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) review

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with in-box content

With the afforadable price tag, the smartphone comes along with usual accessories such as a USB data cable, AC adapter and a user manual. There is also an OTG cable that lets you charge your other USB-powered devices through the latest Zenfone Max.


After the flagship Zenfone 3, the Asus Zenfone 3 Max is the next smartphone by the company that sports a complete metal design. This is undoubtedly considered as a welcome step in the market of affordable smartphones.

The Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) is made of an aluminum alloy-body along with diamond cut chamfered edges. These terms were initially dubbed by some young Chinese entrants. But Asus has adopted them this time to take its Zenfone line to next levels.

Asus has provided an elegant front panel on the Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with a whole 2.5D curved glass protection and touch-sensitive, capacitive keys. The smartphone has 75 percent screen-to-body ratio that makes it a handy option. Further, the front face has an earpiece, ambient light and proximity sensors, LED notification light and a second camera sensor.

On the right, the Zenfone 3 Max has a power/lock key and a volume rocker.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL)

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with volume rocker and power/lock key

The left side of Zenfone 3 Max has a tray that can hold two of your SIM cards or a combination of a SIM card and a memory card.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL)

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with SIM card tray on left

On the bottom, Asus has added a microUSB port and microphone. The top side of the smartphone has a secondary microphone and 3.5mm audio jack.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL)

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with microUSB port and primary microphone on bottom

Asus has provided a sandblasted back panel on the Zenfone 3 Max that is as premium as the rear of the OnePlus 3 or even the iPhone 7. The smartphone features a primary camera sensor and an LED flash on the back. Also, there is the iconic battery pack behind the non-removable cover and a decent room for a loudspeaker.

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL)

Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) with sandblasted, metal back panel

The Asus Zenfone 3 Max (ZC520TL) has 149.5 x 73.7 x 8.6 mm dimensions and weighs 148 grams. With these dimensions and weight, the new smartphone is 2mm thinner and 54 grams lighter than its predecessor. It comes in three color options: titanium gray, glacier silver and sand gold.

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Categories: Mobiles