The clinical trials of maraviroc showed that treatment failure was mostly associated with lack of X4 virus detection at baseline. The detection limit for X4 in tropism assays is ill defined around 10%. In the current study, quantification of X4-tropic minority populations was assessed on artificial mixed samples and 38 clinical isolates. These mixtures were subjected to tropism "clonal genotyping" or "population phenotyping". The detection of minority variants was dependant on the input of amplifiable copies. At VL > 4 log IU/ml, X4 quantification was deemed reliable. PCR founder effect and clonal resampling might result in misrepresentation of the minority species concentration at VL < 4 log. Fourteen of the clinical isolates contained dual/mixed X4-tropic virus, 5 of which were below 10% of the virus population. Currently, there is no indication what level of X4 would lead to treatment failure. Assays aiming for the detection of minority species should express results in function of VL.