HONOR promises a killer cameraphone with their latest flagship, the Magic 5 Pro.
But aside from its impressive camera setup, the device also features other high-end hardware and premium design that aims to compete in this populated high-end market. So the question is, how does it fare against the competition? Should it be your next daily driver? We’ll find out in our HONOR Magic 5 Pro Review.
HONOR Magic 5 Pro Specs
- Anroid 13, MagicOS 7.1
- Dual SIM, Dual standby
- 6.81-inch LTPO AMOLED display, 2848 x 1312 pixel resolution, 460ppi
- Quad-Curved floating screen
- 120Hz refresh rate, 2160Hz PWM Dimming
- 1300-nits peak brightness, HDR10+, IMAX Enhanced
- Discrete Display Chipset
- 3.19GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 octa-core processor
- 12GB LPDDR5X RAM
- Adreno 740 GPU
- 512GB UFS 4.0, non-expandable
- 12-megapixel (ultra-wide) + TOF front cameras
- 50-megapixel (f/1.12-inch, f/1.6) + 50-megapixel (ultra-wide) + 50-megapixel (3.5x optical, 100x digital, periscope) rear cameras + ToF 3D, LED flash
- Stereo speakers, No headphone jack
- Under-display fingerprint scanner, Face unlock
- HSPA+, 4G LTE, 5G
- WiFi 6, dual-band
- Bluetooth 5.2
- dual-band GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, BDS
- IR blaster
- USB Type-C
- Dimensions: 162.9 x 76.7 x 8.8mm
- Weight: 219g
- Colors: Glacier Blue, Meadow Green, Coral Purple, Orange and Black
- Colors: 5,100mAh non-removable battery, 66W wired, 50W wireless charging, Reverse wireless charging
Design and Build Quality
Like its predecessor, the HONOR Magic 5 Pro has a large, protruded ring that houses the triple camera setup in a triangular layout. The packed camera setup made the device top-heavy, which you can definitely feel while holding it.
On the upside, the back panel is made of glass but is curiously topped with a matte layer. While it did keep it clean from any fingerprint marks or smudges, the back panel felt plasticky instead of glass.
Still, it feels really solid and comfortable to hold thanks to the glass-on-glass design, smooth curves in the front and back, and the IP68-rating for dust and water protection. HONOR also threw in a pre-applied screen protector and a clear case, which barely added any thickness to the device and actually improved the grip.
To be honest, the HONOR Magic5 Pro feels a bit chunky. Still, it is actually on the thinner and lighter side of a flagship phone, considering all the hardware it packs inside.
Color options are limited to green and black, but both are clean and slightly muted for elegance. The color that we got here is Meadow Green, which is way better than the typical black. We wish there are other colors available.
Taking a tour, we have the large 6.73-inch AMOLED screen on the front. There’s a tiny pill-shaped punch-hole on the top left for the dual front cameras. Plus, it has noticeably thin bezels that result in a 92.33% screen-to-body ratio.
The sides of the device have a shiny metallic material with two antenna bands on all sides. The top has the first loudspeaker, microphone, and IR blaster.
At the bottom, there’s the SIM tray, primary microphone and speaker, and the USB Type-C port. Unsurprisingly, no headphone jack.
The left side is clean, while on the right, there are the lock/power button and volume controls. The physical buttons feel premium and tactile albeit a little stiff.
Overall, HONOR nailed the design and build of the Magic 5 Pro. It may not be the most attractive phone around, but it’s clean, straightforward, and feels robust enough to last.
Display and Sound Quality
The HONOR Magic 5 Pro comes with a 6.81-nch LTPO OLED display with a 2848 x 1312 pixel resolution, 1920Hz PWM dimming, 460ppi, 10-bit color, HDR10+ support, and of course, 120Hz dynamic refresh rate.
Display quality is great. It gets bright enough for outdoor use and watching HDR content. Plus, thanks to the Smart display mode, it automatically switches between Normal or Vivid colors to match what you’re doing — ideal if you like watching movies and photo editing.
The dynamic refresh rate also worked well to make scrolling and playing games look buttery smooth. HDR10+ and Widevine L1 are also here and work on some streaming apps.
With the stereo speakers, the one on top provides the treble and vocals while the bottom is more for bass and high frequencies. In our tests, it provided clear and balanced sound with audible bass, loud volume, and thanks to the large display, good stereo separation for a more immersive experience.
Hardware and Performance
A true 2023 flagship, the HONOR Magic 5 Pro is powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 octa-core processor with Adreno 740 GPU, 12GB of RAM, and a generous 512GB of storage. As expected, there’s no microSD card slot for storage expansion.
Unfortunately, the unit that we got was an engineering sample, which runs on beta software that prohibited us to download and run benchmarks. We’ll update this article with benchmark scores once we get a retail unit.
Nevertheless, the performance is extra smooth, fast, and reliable, which isn’t surprising since this is the fastest processor you can get on any mobile device today.
It also handled games exceptionally well. Top favorites like Call of Duty Mobile and Mobile Legends: Bang Band ran at the highest graphics settings smoothly with no frame drops. The same can be said for the likes of Asphalt and Genshin Impact.
However, thermal management could’ve been better as it did get warm after a couple of minutes of playing, especially under Performance mode. No overheating issues, though.
Software and User Interface
The HONOR Magic 5 Pro runs on the latest Android 13-based MagicOS 7.1 user interface. It’s not the cleanest UI we’ve seen but it was able to showcase everything the latest Android version has to offer while adding the brand’s own touches to it.
It offers various customization settings from themes, icon styles, and always-on display (AOD) settings.
For biometrics, it has both an under-display fingerprint scanner and face unlock, which worked well during our time with it. HONOR also threw in different animation styles.
For your own personal security, the Magic 5 Pro has an Emergency SOS feature, Emergency Contacts, and you can input your Medical Info for the reference of first responders.
You can also block fake towers, a Password Vault for easy login, a special Safe for sensitive files, and App Lock to restrict access from select apps.
Android’s Digital Wellbeing is also here, so you can monitor your smartphone usage and habits. Parental Controls are also included so you can limit smartphone usage if you’re handing it to your kids.
HONOR’s YoYo virtual assistant is still alive and kicking, and it offers intelligent suggestions and Magic Text to assist you in day-to-day usage of your phone.
HONOR has mastered the camera app at this point, and it’s evident on the Magic 5 Pro. It provides easy access to all the settings and options, no worries there.
It also uses Microsoft Keyboard out of the box instead of the usual Google Keyboard. It’s fine and easy to get used to, but it can be easily changed if you need to.
The HONOR Magic 5 Pro has not one, not two, but three 50-megapixel cameras. The main one is a 1/1.2-inch sensor with a f/1.6 aperture and optical image stabilization (OIS). The second one has a 122-degree ultra-wide lens that has a 13mm lens equivalent and also works as a macro shooter.
Finally, there’s the 50-megapixel sensor with a periscope-style lens that has a 90mm equivalent lens. A 12-megapixel selfie camera is also on the front. In addition, it has a time-of-flight (ToF) sensor in the front and back.
Now, for the quality. The main 50-megapixel camera shoots photos in 12-megapixel resolution. The images are some of the best that you can get today offering high detail, clean sharpness, realistic and not oversaturated colors, deep contrast, and high dynamic range.
Low-light shots, both indoors and outdoors, are also excellent, especially with Night Mode enabled. They have ample exposure, punchy colors, and a clean dynamic range.
Similar qualities can be said on the ultra-wide shots. It also outputs images at 12.5-megapixels with nice colors, details, and dynamic range.
We didn’t notice any bendings or distortion from the ultra-wide shots. Plus, we appreciate the wide field of view when shooting in tight spaces or shooting tall and large subjects that you shouldn’t be able to fit using the primary camera.
The macro shots are also great, especially with good lighting. It lets you get close to a subject for up to 2.5cm.
Meanwhile, the telephoto lens is great for shooting far subjects, which makes moon photography possible. Although, the software could do a better job of enhancing the images.
It also works as a Portrait lens for human subjects. The 90mm equivalent feels a bit too close, but paired with the Portrait/Bokeh mode, it results in really appealing images.
Finally, the 12-megapixel ultra-wide front camera takes excellent selfies. It has realistic color renditions, which are perfect for skin tones. Contrast is high and the dynamic range is more than enough.
The front Portrait/Bokeh mode did a great job of highlighting the subject by isolating it from the background with subtle blur. You can also play with the face beauty mode to remove unwanted blemishes.
Clearly, one of the strengths of the HONOR Magic 5 Pro is its cameras, which isn’t surprising considering that it’s one of the most-praised camera phones in the market today. As of writing, it’s listed as the current top 3 smartphone camera by Dx0Mark.
Battery and Charging
Again, the engineering unit that we got didn’t allow us to run benchmarks, which would’ve included our standard battery tests. We’ll update this article once we get a retail unit.
Still, we were able to get decent screen-on time with our unit. We were able to get about 6 to 7 hours of heavy usage. That’s with constant gaming at max graphics and volume, playing music through wireless earphones, and social media browsing until the 100% charge dropped to 37%.
We expect the retail unit to last longer. In real-world use, light to moderate users can expect more than a day of web browsing, taking pictures, and music listening from this device.
But if you run out of juice fast, don’t worry, as it comes with 66W fast charging support. In our test, we were able to get it from 37% to 49% percent in just 5 minutes. 15 minutes and it’s at 67%, with a full 100% charge in about 40 minutes. It’s definitely not the fastest by today’s standards, but it’s still speedy enough for quick top-ups if you need it.
As expected, connectivity is no problem in this flagship phone. It has the latest dual-band WiFi 6 standard, Bluetooth 5.2, dual-band GPS, NFC, IR blaster, and a USB Type-C port — all worked seamlessly in our tests.
The 5G connectivity was also fast and stable, which is great if you’re uploading large files or downloading games over a mobile network. Call quality, both voice, and video, was also great thanks to the microphone array and loudspeakers.
It’s easy to say that the HONOR Magic 5 Pro is one of the best flagship phones you can get in the Philippines today.
The device has everything you’d expect from a top-notch device: attractive design, a feature-packed display, best-in-class performance, punchy speakers, long battery life paired with fast charging, and of course, a capable set of cameras that offer great quality and flexibility.
It’s hard to pick anything to dislike about the device. While we wish it’s not as thick and heavy as it is, and that there are more colors available, there’s no denying that the HONOR Magic 5 Pro is one of the best value-oriented flagships in the market today.
Honor Magic 5 Pro price and availability in the Philippines
The HONOR Magic 5 Pro 12GB/512GB has a price of Php59,990 in the Philippines. It’s available for pre-order from June 8 to 15 with a free HONOR Earbuds X3 Lite and Band 6 worth about Php6,000.
- Unique design, sturdy build
- Great and packed display
- Best-in-class performance
- Balanced, clean speakers
- Excellent, flexible cameras
- Long battery life with fast charging
- A bit thick, chunky
- More color options would be nice
This article, HONOR Magic 5 Pro Review, was originally published at NoypiGeeks | Philippines Technology News, Reviews and How to’s.