Review: TP-Link Neffos C5 smartphone

Review: TP-Link Neffos C5 smartphone

prosGood performance for the category beautiful designBeautiful and functional interface Good price consAverage battery life outdated android weak cameras

The Neffos C5, from TP-Link, has just arrived in Brazil with a very interesting proposal that has already been made to Brazilian consumers by other brands a few years ago: to be an interesting option for an intermediary with good performance and low price.

If this reminds you of the first-gen Moto G’s initial proposal, you’re not mistaken. Turns out the Moto G is now a premium mid-ranger and costs almost twice as much as the Neffos C5.

This device is the first model of the brand to arrive in Brazil, along with a more basic version of it, called the C5L, which costs a little less. Our review will only focus on the traditional C5, which has a compact case, good specs and pretty decent performance for a device in this price range. Check below if it is worth investing your money in it.

design

This smartphone has a design similar to what we saw in several LG releases that hit the market between 2014 and 2015. That is, you can recognize a lot of the G3 and especially the G4 on this device. The C5 looks a bit like the G4 Beat and others because of this “square” shape with a larger bar at the bottom of the front.

The build quality in terms of finish is good. There aren’t any apparently poorly designed details, but the construction materials don’t seem very sturdy, especially the back cover. If you buy the device in its white version, be more careful. Even with that, you can only know exactly how it lasts on a daily basis.

It is worth noting that the volume and power buttons, located on the right side, are easy to reach and have a very clear tactile feedback. This means that, even without looking, you know which button you are pressing and are sure when you actually press one of them.

The accessories (phone, cable and carrier) are beautiful and very well built. You probably won’t have a problem with a broken cable in a while or headphones not working for any apparent reason.

Performance

As we had never come into contact with a smartphone from TP-Link, and the Neffos C5 is very reasonably priced, its good performance was a little surprise. The device performs everyday tasks very quickly, handling social networking apps, news portals, browsers and basic games without any “choke”.

We’ve already tested more expensive smartphones with more advanced hardware than the Neffos C5 that didn’t run as smoothly as it did.

It can also run more advanced games like Horizon Chase and Angry Birds 2 very easily. The device reproduces the graphics of these titles without any additional loss to what already happens because the screen is “only” HD and there is no slowness to load or run these games.

Switching between apps and dealing with the general system interface is always very fast, which shows a great synchronization between hardware and software. We’ve already tested more expensive smartphones with more advanced hardware than the Neffos C5 that didn’t run as smoothly as it did. Despite this, there are still limitations, and the benchmarks reveal this.

benchmarks

To carry out this analysis, we submitted the Neffos C5 to four benchmark applications. They are: 3DMark (Ice Storm Unlimited), AnTuTu Benchmark 6, GFXBench (T-Rex HD Off Screen and T-Rex HD On Screen) and Vellamo Mobile Benchmark (HTML 5 and Metal).

3D Mark (Ice Storm Unlimited)

3D Mark’s Ice Storm Unlimited test is used to make direct comparisons between processors and GPUs. Factors such as display resolution can affect the final result. The higher the score, the better the performance.

AnTuTu Benchmark 6

One of the most highly regarded benchmark apps in its category, AnTuTu Benchmark 6 tests interface, CPU, GPU and RAM. The results are added together and generate a final score. The higher the score, the better the performance.

GFX Bench (T-Rex HD)

The GFX Bench is geared towards measuring graphic quality. This includes things like performance stability, rendering quality, and power consumption. Results are reported as average frames per second (fps). The higher the score, the better the performance.

Velamo Mobile Benchmark

The Vellamo Mobile Benchmark applies two tests to the device: HTML5 and Metal. In the first one, the performance of the cell phone in direct access to the internet via browser is evaluated. In the Metal test, the final number indicates the performance of the processor. The higher the score, the better the performance.

Screen

The C5’s display is built on the IPS LCD standard and has a diagonal of 5 inches. This, combined with the HD resolution (1280×720), guarantees an “ok” pixel density: 293 ppi. The ideal is at least 300 ppi, a range from which the human eye no longer distinguishes the pixels at the distance at which we use these devices from the face.

This screen size is considered by many people as the most suitable, as it guarantees a certain balance between space and comfort in handling the device with just one hand. However, as we are talking about a cheap device at a time when smartphones have gone up in price, there are defects in this display.

First, it doesn’t reproduce colors faithfully. The saturation seems too low, which leaves everything looking a little off-white and lifeless. Strong tones such as blue, yellow and red are always the most visibly affected. On the other hand, the maximum brightness level is quite strong, which allows you to use the C5 even in strong sunlight without major problems. The wide viewing angles also help in more extreme situations.

software

This device comes standard with Android Lollipop 5.1, which is a negative point, since Marshmallow 6.0.1 has been on the market for almost a year and we are already about to receive a new version from Google. That is, unless TP-Link has plans to update your device very soon, it will have very outdated software in a few months.

The customization that the company has applied over the operating system is relatively bland and functional.

Despite this, the customization that the company has applied to the operating system is relatively bland and functional. You don’t see such a blatant difference in visuals from what we see in pure Android today when it comes to design, but there are some very important structural differences. For example, there is no app drawer, and you can customize transition effects and themes natively, without installing launchers or anything else.

The system interface, despite not having an app drawer to help with organization, is functional because it maintains many of the common Android skills and still has some smart extras, such as the theme store.

These themes don’t just change the icons, but all the native apps on the device. This means that it is possible to make a very profound change in the appearance of the software with just a few touches on the screen.

There aren’t many unnecessary apps pre-installed, but we do have that situation of repeated apps: a Google app for music and another native to the system for the same thing, a Google email app and a native to the system for the same thing, and so on.

Camera

In the camera department, the Neffos C5 is pretty average. It can take intermediate shots in good lighting conditions and you have to be patient with the focus, as well as keeping your arm as steady as possible at all times. Any fiddling results in terrible photos, totally blurry or with a lot of noise.

However, again we have to pay attention to the fact that practically all devices in this price range have cameras as deficient as those of the C5. I mean, he’s average. Technically speaking, we have an 8 MP sensor at the back and a 5 MP sensor at the front. The main one has dual flash and autofocus.

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The camera software, in turn, is very interesting and simple to use. It is worth noting the presence of the “smart” capture mode, which is a more advanced variation of the “automatic” mode.

Photos taken with this smart mode have always looked better in our tests, as it basically works by choosing which shooting mode is best suited for each scene automatically. It switches between landscape, portrait and more without you interfering.

Drums

The Neffos C5 battery is average. She can keep her phone away from the outlets for a whole day without any problems, but that’s in light use, without playing games or watching videos for a long time. This is because the power cell is small, since the smartphone itself is very compact. It’s only 2,000 mAh, which is enough for a cheap mid-ranger like this, but not much else.

Even so, it can handle some gaming time on the way home from work or college and, as we said in the performance section, the device can handle several more advanced titles very well.

It is worth it?

The TP-Link Neffos C5 has its negative points, but they don’t compromise the user experience so much, considering that who will buy this device are people who don’t demand much from the hardware on a daily basis. After all, we are talking about a cell phone that is costing something around R$700 in large Brazilian online stores.

The Neffos C5 has its downsides, but they don’t compromise the user experience as much

As it is dual-chip, has space for memory cards and FM radio, it should become very attractive to the public that does not like to pay a lot for a smartphone, but wants to extract the maximum functionality from it. But that’s not all it has to offer.

The performance is very good for a device of this category, Android is relatively clean, and it is even capable of running more “heavy” intermediate games.

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This phone is very reminiscent of what Motorola brought to Brazil with the first Moto G. Today, it competes with models like the LG K10 and has better performance than the Meizu M2 Note, for example. Its battery is not excellent, and the screen and cameras are “ok”, but for the price that TP-Link is charging, it is worth investing in the Neffos C5.

Where to buy: KaBuM

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