“The Micromax Canvas Knight is both good-looking as well as powerful”
Looks a lot like the iPhone 4Remember the glass sandwich design that Apple adopted for its iPhone 4 smartphone? Micromax has chosen a similar design for the Canvas Knight, only bigger with its 5-inh display. In terms of colour options, the Canvas Knight has been made available in black gold, white gold and black variants. The one we got for review was a black one and we have no complaints whatsoever as it looks quite stylish. The device is built with the use of two glass plates sandwiched together with a metallic chassis in between for added durability. The glass on both front and back has a glossy black finish, while the metallic chassis in between features matte black finish. Overall, it feels like a bigger version of the Apple iPhone, but the main differences are the bold Micromax logo and a raised camera at the back that distinguishes the device. The Micromax Canvas Knight surely looks slim and sleek, but its metal frame adds a lot of weight. With the device weighing close to 200 grams, it’s surely among one of the heavier Android smartphones available in the market today. Most of the weight comes from its metal chassis that adds a ton of durability to the device. However, at the same time, the glass layer at the front and the back are among its most fragile parts. To protect that Micromax has provided a protective case inside the box but sadly, it looks flimsy and robs the device of its looks. If you plan on buying the device, you’re probably better off not using the bundled case unless you’re paranoid about scratches.
Definite premium appeal but it’s fragileOne thing that Canvas Knight can surely promise is the appeal of a premium Android smartphone, that too without going overboard in terms of money spent. The use of metal and glass certainly adds a touch of class and sophistication to the device, while its slim profile makes it easy to hold. The bigger display might be a slight problem for the users as one-handed usage becomes an issue, and reaching across the display is difficult even if you have long fingers. However, to improve usage, Micromax has moved the keys towards the centre of the device aiding in single-handed utility. The device has a scratch-resistant glass layer at the front as well as on the back of the device, but users would have to be extra careful as the glass is fragile and is likely to crack if you manage to drop the handset on a hard surface. Additionally, while making calls, we felt that the edges of the device are sharp and could be a cause of discomfort for the users. If only the device had slightly tapered edges, it would have been certainly better. Despite that, the Canvas Knight is a lovely looking device. It’s a definite attention grabber and might just get you a few eyeballs whilst using it at public places.
India’s first 2.0GHz octa-core smartphoneAs surprising it might sound, the Micromax Canvas Knight is India’s first Android smartphone that comes powered with a MediaTek MT6592T (Turbo) processor that runs at 2.0GHz, rocking an overall clock speed advantage of about 300MHz over the non-turbo variant of the same chip being used by other competing brands like Intex, Gionee, Karbonn and iBerry, to name a few. However, with 32GB of storage space available, users would rarely feel the need to add additional storage on the device. Even if they feel the need, they can use any available cloud storage solution like Google Drive or Dropbox. Out of the 32GB storage that has been made available, users would have 25GB storage to themselves for storing data and 1.5GB or space has been dedicated to apps. With just 1.5GB of application storage space, the Canvas Knight is sure to be a nightmare for gamers as any HD game takes up anywhere from 1GB or more. Users won’t be able to have heavy games and apps installed on the handset at once, unless they move the apps to the other storage.
5-inches of bright and colourful visualsMicromax has used a 5-inch in-plane switching technology based LCD display for the Canvas Knight and to add to it, the display has been manufactured by Sharp, which is known for making excellent displays. The display on the Canvas Knight, if not the best, is certainly among one of the better 5-inch displays presently available in the market. The IPS display offers vibrant and good-looking visuals, equally useful for multimedia, internet browsing, gaming and other tasks. The display bears full HD or 1,080 x 1,920 pixel resolution natively. The brightness levels offered by the display are good and as a result, the screen is legible in brightly-lit rooms and under sunlight as well. However, the higher brightness takes its toll on the battery life of the device and could lead to reduced run times if kept at high levels. Along with a vibrant display, the Canvas Knight features a highly-responsive touch as well. The smartphone recognises even the most gentle of touches and translates them to action. But sadly, the display does not have any smudge-resistant coating, so after a couple of hours of use, you will definitely feel the need to clean the screen.
Brilliant snapper at the backThe Micromax Canvas Knight sports a 16-megapixel camera at the back, supplemented by an LED flash. However, this can simply not encapsulate all the features that this camera has to offer. The 16-megapixel sensor offers software-based image stabilisation, which means that users can click pictures even while moving and the device tries to eliminate motion-related flaws from the image. The camera also makes use of a custom lens, provided by Largan. This makes sure that the camera captures clear images all along. At the back of the device, Micromax has made use of a special glass-based cover for the lens to protect it from damage but sadly, the glass is of inferior quality and can be scratched very easily.
Plain vanilla Android plus a bunch of preloaded goodiesAlthough Micromax has adopted a ton of innovations in the making of this device, on the software front they have not done something major. Apart from the addition of a few wallpapers and a brand new icon pack, Micromax Canvas Knight offers near-stock Android experience.
In terms of preloaded applications, there are trial versions of a few games and a bunch of social media apps including Spuul, BBM, Truecaller and Kingsoft Office just to name a few. Along with these, Micromax has also added a bunch of its own apps like M! Live for multimedia, M! Security and M! Vault for hiding and securing content.While the device performs well, there is little to differentiate between stock version of Android 4.2 and the one preloaded on Canvas Knight. The company has promised free upgrades to the devices over-the-air and looking at the recent past, Micromax did deliver software upgrades even though only to its flagship devices.
Smooth performance but a potential hand warmerThe Canvas Knight delivers great and flawless performance on demand, but at the same time, the slim profile and the turbo class processor bring their own side effects. Within a few minutes of playing HD games, the device gets hot and the metal chassis surrounding the device acts as a potential radiator to help bring the temperature down faster. And if you receive a call in between, placing the phone against your ear may not be a fun experience. Apart from the fast heat build up, there is potentially no flaw in the device and users can expect uninterrupted gaming and multimedia usage for as long a they want. We tried playing HD as well as THD games on this phone and after reaching a certain threshold, it doesn’t heat up any further, and as a bonus, there’s no noticeable difference in performance. We tested the device for performance by playing a number of games on it, and ran a series of apps to measure out the true potential of the octa-core processor, but sad as it might sound, most apps are optimised for dual or quad-core processors, and apps optimised for octa-core chips are still under way. However, the octa core processor has been optimised well for performance and battery savings, and as a result, the Canvas Knight is able to run for one to one and a half days between recharges with ease. We tried testing out the true potential of the device in terms of battery backup and in our battery endurance test, the Canvas Knight returned a time of about seven hours where it played a 720p resolution video at 50 percent brightness and volume continuously.
VerdictSumming it all up in a few words, the Micromax Canvas Knight is a good-looking Android smartphone that comes powered with Android Jelly Bean 4.2 operating system with very little customisations done on software and user interface part. What makes it unique is the 2GHz octa core processor, which as an industry first is the main USP of this device. Apart from that, the rear camera offers some really good results and is fun to use. The battery life of the device is good, and additionally it supports dual-SIM connectivity. Ultimately, at Rs 19,999 the Canvas Knight comes as a good looking, performance-oriented Android smartphone that has its own unique positives and negatives. With its dial-SIM functionality, it certainly has a slight edge over the competition, while the 16-megapixel camera and a 2GHz octa core processor are its major USP’s. Editor’s rating: 8 / 10
- Stylish looks
- Vivid and bright display
- Sturdy build
- Impressive camera
- Gets very hot, fast
- Glass back could be prone to scratches and breakage