"Great phone, but..."3.5 starson by An Honest Myth
Pros: Great sound quality, good reception, mp3 player, ability to customize, battery life
Cons: High pitched noise from inner display, outer display could be better, music navigation needs improvement
Summary: This was my first attempt at a flip phone, and I must say that it is outstanding compared to those my friends have owned over the years. As an individual who was cautious about finally upgrading beyond my old 2-color Kyocera "brick," which has been 100% reliable and virtually indestructible for the past 4 years, I bit the bullet and upgraded to a VX8300 because the specs were just too cool. Yet, I have already returned one and will be returning a second - read on to find out why.
The look and feel of the phone is actually pretty sleek, although they should have opted for an internal antenna at this point in the game. The SAR rating is decent, though (probably due to the fact the antenna protrudes), so I'm not complaining with the knowledge that I'm not getting as much radiation pumped into my body as I would with a Motorola phone. The buttons are all very easy to work with and the phone feels and looks very well-built.
The sound quality during calls is superb, and I have gotten great reception, so among its plethora of features the VX8300 still works well as a phone (shocking!).
Navigating through the phone's menu system is easy; however, I wouldn't recommend one of the display themes that make the menus animated - it just takes too damn long to scroll through the system.
The outer display is a little pixely for its time and could be better, and the inner display makes an incessant high-pitched noise that absolutely drives me nuts. The noise was the main reason I returned my first phone, because I have really sensitive ears and I constantly heard the sound from the display whenever the phone was to my face.
I did a search online to see if anyone else had this problem, and I couldn't find anyone else with it - so I brought the phone to a service center thinking it was just my original phone (which was ordered online). They replaced it with one from the store, but the noise from this phone is even worse! Did I just get two shoddy phones or is America deaf? If you own this phone, place the display against your ear in a quiet room - you tell me. I naturally hold the phone so my ear as at the top of the display (it is more comfortable for some reason) and every time I make a call I feel like I'm taking a grammer school hearing test. Also, the speakerphone is messed up on my replacement phone and it makes a tinny vibrating sound during calls that my first one didn’t; therefore, I’ll be taking this one back as well.
I purchased a microSD card when I ordered the phone to load it up with mp3s and save some money on an iPod, and generally the mp3 feature on the phone works great. My only complaints with the music player are as follows:
1. I had to manually change the accepted format from .wma to .mp3 in the secret menu by hitting the OK button, typing 0 and then entering all 0s for the service code, scrolling down to Music Setting and enabling .mp3s.
2. There is no way to jump to certain songs, so if you have a few hundred mp3s loaded like me, you have to scroll through them all to find the one you want.
3. If you are playing music, there is no way to access the menus and perform other tasks on the phone without exiting the music player.
Other than that, the audio is clear pending you have a decent headset, and even coming from the side speakers the sound quality is impressive.
All-in-all, the VX8300 is a sturdy phone with easy navigation, awesome features, and is outstanding for use as a telephone. If it weren't for the mosquito in my ear, the messed up speaker phone in my replacement, and a little more functionality with the music player, I would easily rate this phone a 9.