AnandTech: Google's Nexus 5X has a great display and is worth the price

In today's open source roundup: AnandTech has a detailed review of Google's Nexus 5X Android phone. Plus: A video overview of what's new in Cinnamon 2.8. And DistroWatch reviews Fedora 23 Workstation


AnandTech reviews the Google Nexus 5X phone

AnandTech's reviews are usually very deep and detailed, and many Android users wait patiently to find out what the site thinks of a new phone before buying. AnandTech now has a full review of Google's Nexus 5X phone, and liked it a lot despite noticing a few flaws.

The Nexus 5x also has a 4.5 star rating on Amazon, so AnandTech's review seems to be on par with the experience of those who already own the Nexus 5X phone.

Brandon Chester reports for AnandTech:

The Nexus 5X certainly isn't a perfect device. It's not meant to be a flagship phone and it's not priced like one; at $379 it's not the most expensive phone out there, but it's not exactly the cheapest one either. Still, I find myself really liking it despite its flaws. I definitely have a soft spot in my heart for the original Nexus 5, and I was quite disappointed when it didn't receive a true successor last year.

This year's 5X certainly is a true successor, but not every aspect delivers the improvements you would expect from a two year gap between releases. The performance isn't where you'd expect it to be, and Google's stance on disk encryption continues to reduce NAND performance. For all the things the 5X gets wrong though, it gets many other things really right. As always, it's nice to gather everything together in order to decide if a device is worth purchasing.

The 5X's display is awesome, and there's really not much more that needs to be said. The Nexus 5 had a pretty good display for the time, but the 5X definitely takes the calibration and color reproduction to the next level. There's no more messed up low gamma curve, so the display doesn't have the washed out appearance that some people complained about with the Nexus 5's display. Brightness has also been boosted, and contrast is significantly higher too. I really couldn't ask for any more from an IPS LCD panel, and compared to what we got with last year's Nexus 6 the 5X is a breath of fresh air.

Ultimately, the Nexus 5X is a true successor to the Nexus 5, and for $379 you really can't go wrong when buying one. You're getting a great display, a great camera, a great fingerprint scanner, good battery life, and a chassis that is most definitely plastic, but without any of the flex you see on cheaper devices. For me the camera alone sets the 5X apart from anything else in its price bracket, but pretty much every aspect of it is ahead of the competition at this price point unless you're willing to take a look at imports from Chinese manufacturers, which come with a whole host of other concerns regarding the warranty and network compatibility. The Nexus 5X definitely makes some tradeoffs in order to hit its price target, but if you're looking for a smartphone priced between $300 and $400 I highly recommend you take a look at the Nexus 5X.

More at AnandTech

A video overview of what's new in Cinnamon 2.8

Cinnamon 2.8 has been released, and there's quite a bit of new stuff in it. You can read the official release for details, or just watch the video below to check out the new stuff in Cinnamon 2.8.

DistroWatch reviews Fedora 23

Fedora 23 has been released, and DistroWatch has a full review of the latest Fedora release. Jesse Smith noted that the Workstation version of Fedora 23 reminded him of a mobile edition that might be suited for a tablet.

Jesse Smith reports for DistroWatch:

Last week, when I reviewed Ubuntu 15.10, I commented that the experience was virtually identical to running the previous two releases of the Ubuntu distribution. I came away from my time with Fedora 23 with a very similar feeling. There are some minor package upgrades with regards to GNOME, the Linux kernel and LibreOffice, but otherwise the experience is virtually identical, at least on the surface, to running the previous two versions of Fedora. As with Ubuntu, this is either good news or bad, depending on your views on the distribution.

If you loved GNOME last year and enjoy working with the Anaconda installer and liked the configuration tools and default utilities of Fedora 21 and 22, then Fedora 23 provides you with more of the same, along with some behind the scenes bonus material like packages built with ASLR. On the flip side of things, if you disliked GNOME's excessive use of white space, the extra configuration screens, Anaconda's strange approach to handling storage space, and you don't like the way the Software package manager seems to randomly show or hide software, then you may be unhappy to hear those characteristics are still present.

I am pleased to report the tools that ship with Fedora 23 generally worked well. I was especially happy to see progress has been made on the DevAssistant utility, even if the program did still lock up on me when it was finished setting up a project. I was especially happy to note the package manager lock-ups I have experienced with nearly every Fedora release in the past five years did not occur during my time with Fedora 23. A few packages did fail to install (for reasons unknown) and that was annoying, but at least I did not encounter locks on the package database that usually plagued past versions of the distribution.

On the whole I generally enjoyed Fedora 23. There are some rough edges, but most things worked for me. My one concern with the edition I tried was that the edition was called Workstation, but virtually every aspect of the operating system acts like a mobile device. Which I would probably like if this edition were called the Consumer edition or the Mobile edition. The big buttons, empty screen space and Activities menu would be well suited to a tablet. However, I feel this style is out of place on a developer's workstation. Fedora Workstation seems to be walking a strange path where the user needs to know how to hunt down and configure extra repositories to play audio files and should be expected to use tools such as DevAssistant to set up coding projects, but yet the user also needs to be guided through accessing Facebook and finding a web browser in the package manager. I guess what I am getting to is Fedora 23 worked well for me, I am just not sure who the target audience is.

More at DistroWatch

Did you miss a roundup? Check the Eye On Open home page to get caught up with the latest news about open source and Linux.

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