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CHERRY Aqua S11 Pro: Still a solid gaming phone under PHP 8K?

The CHERRY Aqua S11 Pro launched last February is one of the better gaming-focused phones on a budget.
CHERRY Aqua S11 Pro: A Solid Gaming Phone for under PHP 8K?
CHERRY Aqua S11 Pro's stunning frosted glass rear panel and camera module

A solid budget gaming companion?

Fast-forward to mid-2024, it could still be a capable gaming phone for PHP 8K.

Why? It has a good combination of specs from the display, chip, and overall configurations.

On paper, the above-mentioned specs with the 8GB RAM, 256GB UFS 2.2, and 5,000mAh battery should allow the Aqua S11 Pro to offer a competitive gaming experience in the price range.
AnTuTu and GeekBench
AnTuTu and GeekBench

In fact, in AnTuTu the phone scored 415,138 while it scored 728 and 2,107 in GeekBench's single and multi-core tests.
Mobile Legends Character screen
Mobile Legends
Mobile Legends graphics settings
Mobile Legends graphics settings

In Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, the game recommended the high frame rate and high graphics settings as the default. So far, after multiple rounds, the phone maintains a decent frame rate at high graphics settings with minimal temperature increase after an extended play session.
Pokemon Unite start screen
Pokemon Unite start screen
Pokemon Unite graphics screen
Pokemon Unite graphics screen

In Pokemon Unite, the game recommended high graphics settings with a medium frame rate. When we played several rounds of Pokemon Unite, the graphics and frame rate were consistent and we never experienced throttling or stuttering during the majority of the run. What we noticed was taking some time was the initial download and processing of game files. This happens when updating the app as well.
Call of Duty home screen
Call of Duty home screen
Call of Duty graphics settings
Call of Duty graphics settings

In Call of Duty: Mobile, the game recommended medium graphics and medium frame rate settings. In our experience, this strikes a good balance between responsiveness and graphics fidelity. The quality and smoothness are maintained even after an hour of continuous team death matches.
Genshin Impact in game
Genshin Impact in game
Genshin Impact graphics settings
Genshin Impact graphics settings

With Genshin Impact, the game recommended the lowest graphics settings as the default while the FPS is locked at 30fps. This is respectable as Genshin Impact is one of the more demanding games with flagship phones only getting medium graphics settings as the default.

The game looks decent when roaming around but when in combat, the phone struggles heavily as soon as more objects are in the frame.

CHERRY Mobile Aqua S11 Pro Specs

Display: 6.7-inch AMOLED screen w/ 120Hz refresh rate, FHD+ resolution
CPU: 2.2GHz 6nm MediaTek Helio G99 octa-core processor
GPU: Mali-G57 MC2
ROM: 256GB UFS 2.2
Back Camera: 64MP + 0.3MP depth + 2MP macro + LED flash
Selfie Camera: 16MP
Battery: 5,000mAh w/ 33W fast charging
OS: Android 13
Connectivity: WiFi (2.4GHz/5GHz), 4G LTE, GPS, dual SIM slots
Sensors: Accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic
Others: Side-mounted fingerprint sensor, face unlock, dual-mic, Colors: Black
Price: PHP 7,999

Our thoughts

Overall, the Aqua S11 Pro performs decently with games such as Call of Duty: Mobile, Mobile Legends, and Pokemon Unite.

But, it will struggle with heavier games like Genshin Impact and other Hoyoverse games. It was stuttering and warming up when the game got busy with enemies and animations.

For the price, it still managed to surprise us with its thermal performance after extended gameplay sessions. The phone was warmer, but not by much. We also saw minimal hits to the frame rate.

It is still a reliable affordable gaming companion.

What do you guys think?

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