realme narzo 30A review: A casual’s dream gaming phone

All the power you can actually afford



narzo 30A

True gaming power comes to those with the ridiculous amounts of moolah in the bank. If you want to truly experience gaming power fit for competition, you go big or go home. Yet, we all know that everyone wants a piece of the action without having to spend so much money to get there. Enter realme’s incredible narzo series of gaming smartphones.

A few months ago, they launched the realme narzo 20, the company’s first budget gaming smartphone. Their idea was simple: bringing great mobile gaming capabilities and features to a more budget-friendly space. I had a ton of praises for that phone when it came out because of the power it wields for even the most casual of gamers.

Now, the company launched its second smartphone in the lineup in the realme narzo 30A. This time around, they didn’t go for just great power; they wanted the full limitless experience. It’s the kind of limitless power that casual gamers can experience with whatever their hearts desire. But is this really the limitless gaming machine for them?

For starters, here’s what you’re getting with the realme nazro 30A:

It has a 6.5-inch Mini-drop display

narzo 30A

It comes with a Helio G85 processor and a 6,000mAh battery

narzo 30A

At the back, it has the Diagonal Stripe design

narzo 30A

It comes in two color options: Laser Black and Laser Blue

narzo 30A

Performance that will blow you away

The realme narzo 30A comes with a Helio G85 processor inside this thicc body design. Along with 4GB of RAM, it fits your typical budget to midrange smartphone offering. Ideally speaking, the phone delivers incredible power for anything you can throw at it. From your apps to your games, as they say, it wields limitless power.

I’ve been using this device as my go-to for most casual games I play every day, along with the usual social media. For the most part, I see where they’re coming from when it comes to pure performance. Apps were quite responsive, and multi-tasking was a breeze even with about four to five RAM-intensive apps open. But that’s not all that this phone offers.

A breakdown of gaming performance

Realme struts the entire narzo brand as its own gaming smartphone. What they’re offering is a more affordable gaming device without sacrificing that sweet gaming performance. With the realme narzo 30A, I felt it hit the sweet spot for any game you throw at it.

Casual Games

So, I put in some casual games ranging from all possible genres that I’ve played a lot. Well, it’s mostly music games like SuperStar SMTOWN and casual BR games like Stumble Guys. Apart from visual appeal, the games play quite nicely and boot up at a considerably fast rate.

These games typically don’t take up too much RAM on your system, which I feel is perfect for a device like this. For the most part, you don’t have to configure graphics settings to run them smoothly. I honestly had little complaints playing these games on this device, except for those times I experienced a little input lag.

Sports-based Games

For this one, I only managed to play NBA Live Mobile on this device since it’s one of those sports simulation games fit for casuals. Normally, sports games on mobile require some level of adjustments to your graphics settings, but not this one. On some of my older devices, this game sort of ran quite slowly.

On the narzo 30A, it is a pleasant experience to play. Apart from any inherent visual bugs the game has, it plays quite well and loads quickly in between menus. Also, input was responsive especially for most of the controls; basically, only me dropping the phone would cause lags in responsiveness.

Competitive/Esports Games

Now, the big question is whether or not this phone can handle the grit of competitive games. Some of the games I tried include titles like PUBG Mobile and Call of Duty Mobile for shooters, and League of Legends: Wild Rift and Mobile Legends for MOBA. The short answer is, well, it handles them well.

League of Legends: Wild Rift hits 60 FPS, but on High settings

The long answer is that you can maximize your gaming performance with some tweaks. For the MOBAs, I set the main graphics setting to High — the maximum the phone supports. In Wild Rift’s case, I still managed to hit above 60 FPS even on relatively high settings and slightly dialled-down effects.

For the shooters, I had to adjust some more settings to play at roughly the same frame rate. Although, for these two games, I could only set everything at “Medium” and turned off some real time shadows to do so. Still, the games play well enough when you’re just playing casually.

Battery life for days on end, but not a quick refresh

I know I sort of touch on this before but the other reason why this device looks bulky is because of the 6,000mAh battery inside. With such a big battery, you expect to use this device for such a long period of time without even charging it. I mean, if they’re going for limitless gaming, this would be ideal — and it came close to that.

In my experience using this device, I managed to stretch the battery to last for about 18 hours just by playing games. When you’re doing a bunch of other tasks with it, it lasts for roughly 2 days. Mind you, I did all of this without reaching for the charger at any point in between. To me, it’s amazing how a device like this can last.

However, when I got the chance to deplete the big battery, it took about two hours to fully charge it back. It’s not that bad all things considered, except that it took me about an hour for this device to reach around 40%. Because it comes with a 18W charger with fast charging support, I thought it would take less time.

Is this your gaming GadgetMatch?

The realme narzo 30A comes in at a whopping PhP 6,490 for the 4GB + 64GB variant. All in all, you get a device that delivers great gaming performance that lasts incredibly long. From casual to competitive games, the phone held its own and delivered on its promise of a “limitless gaming” machine.

Even though it takes a little while to get considerable juice in it, it manages to keep itself afloat for your gaming needs. If you have the intention of using this as your daily driver, it’s more than capable of handling that, as well. From social media browsing to taking photos and watching videos, it serves as one of the most budget-friendly smartphones out there.

If you’re looking for a smartphone you can game on for hours without end, this is one great pickup. If you’re looking for any good smartphone while on a budget, this device also works just as well.


Huawei MateBook D 15 2021 11th Gen review: 4 months after



Huawei MateBook D 15

The work from home and online class setup had us all adjusting to this new normal. You’ll see a lot of inquiries on Facebook groups about LED ring lights, microphones and midrange laptop recommendations. Huawei’s MateBook D series is among the ones you’ll see that has gotten a lot of popularity for this purpose.

It makes perfect sense, since back when I first reviewed the Huawei MateBook D 15 2021 11th Gen, I had a lot of good things to say about it. After four months under regular use, there are quite a few more that I came to realize about this device that I think you guys might find interesting.

It can get things done

A quick refresher on its specs, the D 15 2021 we have with us has an 11th gen Core i5 with the Intel Iris Xe graphics, 16GB DDR4 RAM and 512GB of SSD storage. 

It’s no question, if you’re just going to use this for online classes or regular zoom meetings, the D 15 probably won’t even break a sweat. However, I consider my power requirements to be somewhat on the heavy side for my photo and video editing needs.

What surprised me was I didn’t find myself having to go back to my main editing workstation and have actually done more work on the D 15 than I expected. It may not be as fast, but it also wasn’t drastically slower.

Plus the fact that this has a more accurate display with its 100 percent sRGB color gamut, the 15.6-inch LED display is perfect for my daily Photoshop use.

Portability also applies at home

Huawei MateBook D 15

Working from home for a long time and looking at the same thing over and over, not having to be able to go to places, had many of us bored and unmotivated. I personally always had that urge to look for another spot just for the change of scenery.

Thankfully, weighing only 1.56kg, it gave me the flexibility for me to place it in different places. I didn’t worry that the surface wouldn’t be able to handle it.

Battery life

The capability to place the D 15 on different places wouldn’t really matter if you’re still stuck near an outlet because you’re constantly required to plug it in. Fortunately, the 42Wh battery of the D 15 keeps us away from the charger for around nine to ten hours before needing to plug it back in.

Huawei addresses issues and gives regular updates

Huawei MateBook D 15

During its time with me, the D 15 had quite a few driver and software updates. Along with one of the updates came a fix for an issue I had with its fingerprint scanner where it frequently had trouble recognizing my fingerprint. While it shouldn’t have had that issue to begin with, the regular updates are an indication that users aren’t abandoned and issues are in fact being addressed on Huawei’s end.

I also learned from Huawei’s website that the MateBook series has a Windows 11 upgrade rollout plan. That’s something nice to look forward to.

Undesirable camera angle

Huawei MateBook D 15

Sadly, not everything is praise worthy on the D 15. The hidden web camera, while innovative, came at the cost of an awful camera angle. Since it is placed on the keyboard, it is also pointed upwards.

Using it, you’ll mostly see an unflattering image of yourself often emphasizing the size of your nostrils.But if you decide that you’d want to use a laptop raiser for a more comfortable viewing angle, the camera won’t be pointed downwards. That’d make it barely usable.

A generous availability of ports

Huawei MateBook D 15

Being the boxing fan that I am, the recent Pacquiao fight had me subscribing for a pay-per-view service. The full sized HDMI port on the D 15 was heaven sent. During the fight as I was able to output the fight on our dated TV set. It let us to enjoy the stream on a bigger screen.

The availability of USB ports on both sides also let us to choose where certain devices can be plugged. We didn’t worry about hitting our external drives with our mouse or fitting multiple USB devices side by side.

Multi-Screen Collaboration

I did not find myself using this feature as much. However, having this capability eliminated the need for me to grab a USB cable to transfer files from my phone. A quick tap of my phone and I was ready to transfer photos I recently. It’s great for some quick editing before posting on Instagram. 

Is this still your GadgetMatch?

Huawei MateBook D 15

When I think of the D 15, freedom is the word that comes to mind. It gives so much freedom to work anywhere with its portability and battery life. You get freedom to do what you wish with it with its capable hardware. There’s also freedom from wires with the Multi-Screen Collaboration. And even freedom to plug various devices with its great selection of ports.

It’s a no fuss kind of laptop that just gets things done. Its sheer simplicity is what makes it a great device.

If you’re interested in getting the Huawei MateBook D 15 2021 11th Gen with 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD, you can now get it for PhP 48,999.00.


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Samsung Galaxy Watch4 Review: Best Android smartwatch yet?

But is it any better than the Apple Watch?



Samsung launched the Galaxy Watch4 just recently — which is the successor to 2019’s Galaxy Watch Active2.

Now with the power of a BIA (Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis) via its Bio Active Sensor, the Galaxy Watch4 can simply measure your body composition with just your two fingers and wrist.

But is it any better than the Apple Watch?

Watch our Samsung Galaxy Watch4 review now to know more.

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Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200-S1: Intuitive and portable podcasting rig




I am a fan of quality and affordable gear. Modern manufacturing techniques and advancements in technology gave us a vast selection of gadgets in all shapes and sizes.

With the gaining popularity of live streaming, the demand for good audio interface and microphones is growing. The brand Maono, relatively speaking, is a newcomer that offers affordable audio products.

What we’ve got here is the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200-S1, which is a portable podcasting gear. This is the very first product I’ve got the chance to try from this brand and I’m liking it so far. This bundle is ideal for someone who is just getting into podcasting or a musician looking for a cheaper alternative.

What’s in the box?

AM200 Podcast Console

At first glance I actually thought it was a miniatured DJ turntable because of the two mini platters, but those are just volume knobs for the mics and music. It is a 3-channel mixer-type audio interface with five outputs. The two inputs are designated for mics and/or instruments and the other input is for music. Three outputs (3.5mm TRRS) for smartphones are available so you can stream simultaneously on different platforms.

A separate main and monitor output is available so you can listen to what your audience hears. Note that all the inputs and outputs are for 3.5mm jacks so if you are planning to plug in an instrument directly using a PL (1/4 inch) cable, you will need a 3.5mm adapter.

Plug and play

You can connect it to a computer with the USB A to C cable that is included. It doesn’t require any drivers, so, just plug it in and it’s good to go. It should be compatible to most DAWs (Digital Audio Workstation) for music recording. There is a 3-band EQ along with a “REC” volume knob which is like a “Send” knob to feed the audio to the devices it’s connected to.

Two crossfaders control the monitor volume and echo level. The “monitor” crossfader controls both the volume level for the (main) output and the monitor (output). I wish they installed separated levers for each one to control them independently.

This is also the case for the mic volume knob, it controls both the levels of mic 1 and mic 2. It would’ve have been handy if there are separate knobs for each but I think they did this design to fit in a compact box.

For outdoor streaming and recording

At the middle portion, you’ll notice along the LED indicator level signal is a battery indicator. Yes, this is also battery powered which makes it suitable for out of home live streaming, if you prefer creating something for your viewers elsewhere. You can easily recharge the batteries with the USB C cable.

There are also audio sample pads, buttons for sound effects and pitch shifters.

AU-PM360TR Microphone


This condenser microphone does not require phantom power. It runs below 5V, through the XLR to 3.5mm cable, unlike the industry standard condenser microphones. With its cardioid polar pattern, it will be more sensitive to sounds being captured in front of it.


It comes with a pair of in-ear earbuds with a very long cable, enough to cover the distance for a typical on-desk live streaming. I think that the sound quality would be more appreciated by most modern pop listeners who like a lot of bass. Because it does deliver that low-mid thump.


Out of the box, the microphone comes attached to the mini tabletop tripod. The microphone is detachable to the tripod, but if it is used handheld, it will pick-up a lot of hand noise. So, it is better to leave it on the tripod.

Other accessories included are: XLR to 3.5mm cable, two 3.5mm TRRS cables, USB A to USB C cable, and a windscreen cap.


For podcasting, it is very easy to use. It’s what the AU-AM200-S1 is made for and they did a good job. The microphone delivers a clearer and louder output compared to built-in mics in smartphones/laptops or headsets. You can control the volume of music accompaniment easily with the wheel knob, whenever you want to highlight the music or the voice.

Plus, the sound samples like the applause, laughter, cheering etc., are nice additions for some impromptu segments in your streams. You can also record your own samples by pressing the “loop back” button and assigning to any of the blank buttons available.

Since the microphone does not require a phantom power, the output is weaker compared to classic condenser microphones. The sound quality is good nevertheless.


For music recording, you can record your instruments with it on your preferred DAW. I connected my guitar to my digital effects processor with a 3.5mm headphones jack going to the mic input of Maono console. I noticed that the 2 mic inputs have high gain levels because my guitar was already clipping with the volume knob on the AM200 console at around 10 o’clock.

Usually, I set the volume on my guitar effects unit on almost full when I am recording with a different audio interface and mixers. But with the Maono AU-AM200-S1, I only had to set the volume of my guitar effects at 50 percent. This is good because it doesn’t have a designated gain knob. Just watch out for clipping- if it happens, you may want to lower the volume from the source.

I recorded a few short audio samples to demonstrate how the Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200-S1 handles recording. Please excuse my singing voice.

Mic only without echo(onboard) – vocal

Mic only with 50% echo(onboard) – vocal

Mic only with 100% echo(onboard) – vocal

Mic only without echo – vocal and guitar

Mic only with post-editing – vocal and guitar

Guitar through a digital effects processor

In a full band mix – Recorded vocals and guitars (both acoustic and electric)

Fully recorded demo


There are two functions that I have a few comments on:


Denoise — This is their “smart noise cancelling” feature that reduces background noise. It does its job as a noise gate, but unfortunately, you cannot adjust the settings (threshold, attack, range, etc.). Depending on how loud the ambient noise is, the mic sometimes gets a stuttering sound when this feature is engaged. If the room is quiet enough, there shouldn’t be any problem.

Music Only — This feature attempts to minimize the vocals in the music that you are playing, but similarly to the denoise, it sometimes affects the mic audio quality. I suggest looking for backing tracks of the songs you want to sing during your live stream beforehand.

Is the AU-AM200-S1 your GadgetMatch?


The Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200-S1 bundle is a usable and functional piece of gear. I see it as a bring-it-anywhere, all-in-one podcasting kit. It would have been more convenient (for me) if they included ¼ inch inputs for mics and instruments. Although, I guess it would kind of defeat its portable nature because most PL cables are thicker and heavier compared to the 3.5mm cables included in this bundle.

Pricing and Availability

The Maonocaster Lite AU-AM200-S1 retails for $109.00 and is available for purchase in Amazon, Shopee, and Lazada. You can check out their other products at the official Maono website.

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