Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Review
Until a year ago Galaxy S5 Mini would be standard-sized phone. In the meanwhile the perception of screen size has changed. Many manufacturers started running a screen increase race. On the other hand, all of them are aware how large screens can be uncomfortable, so they turn to minies. Large smartphones aren’t for everybody. For many consumers they are too expensive, and for others, who don’t have any worries about budget, overlarge devices aren’t just convenient to use, and that’s it. The mini versions are usually down-sized comparing to original models, but also they bring lower performances and specs sheet. However, it doesn’t mean minis are much worse than those with big screens. The best way to show that is HTC One Mini 2. One of them is Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini, which brings 4.5-inch screen and resembles big Galaxy S5.Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini is nicely balanced device. The Galaxy S5’s look is here, as also as water and dust proof. Some of specific Samsung’s features, like heart rate monitor, fingerprint sensor and Ultra Power Saving mode are here too. Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini isn’t just a youngster from Galaxy S5 family, already a device with weakened performances and camera, but also a price.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Design
The perforated back panel is entirely taken from original phone. Also, the chrome plated sides are clear clue this is a little cousin of a big S5. The body shell is still made of plastic, but it won’t changed the way consumers look on Samsung’s phones. It gives a feel of quality in hands in the form of 120g of weight, which isn’t something to glorify, but also something to handle with. The increased weight comes from 9.1mm in waist, which is 1cm more that Galaxy S5.
This chubby buddy uses its unusual back to prevent slip from hand, which is just a dream for HTC One Mini 2 and its bigger brother HTC One M8. The back panel is removable, so you can change battery very easy. The phone is owner of IP67 certificate, so the swimming in the pool or enjoying the beach shouldn’t be problem.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Display
The S5 Mini’s screen is suffering the lack of quality. If we compare full HD with this 720p screen the differences will come out quickly. That’s the one thing. Completely other one is that even this 720p screen works very well. It’s very precise and responds excellent. Maybe it’s step back comparing to original device, but surely step up in regards to Galaxy S4 Mini. Super AMOLED is very cheery with the colors. Also, it packs very strong black color and good brightness for comfort use at the daylight, but not so effective as Galaxy S5 do. Samsung decided not to remove automatic adjustment features so the screen automatically can change brightness level depending on the environment. This feature minimizes the sunlight effect on screen visibility, but not the reflection screen has, so sometimes you can use it instead of mirror.
The viewing angles are great, and it’s something Super AMOLED is known about. Also, the colors are simply adorable, so you will enjoy the movies and YouTube videos for sure.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Specs and Performances
Beside typical USB 2.0 port, the phone packs lower RAM than its bigger brother. With 1.5GB of RAM and 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor the phone works smoothly, but not so seamlessly like Galaxy S5 which brings fantastic 2.5GHz processor. The quad-core power unit is sufficient for the most of the task you’re expecting to do, as also as Mali 400MP4 GPU, which is also reduce of power and performances in comparison with Adreno 330 from S5.
The lags and delays are possible only when you turn the phone to multitasking mode. The benchmark tests show Galaxy S5 Mini is not as efficient as many expects. Comparing to Sony Xperia Z1 Compact it has less power and smoothness in work, but also with LG G2 which is surprise however.
All the games we tested on Galaxy S5 Mini are playable. The typical games alike Angry Birds are piece of cake for the Mini. The more demanding games are also not too much for it, but with slightly more lags. So, Galaxy S5 Mini is ready for games, which is considerably good having in mind lower GPU.
Samsung like to play with battery life. The Koreans have a lot of good experience using Super AMOLED screens, which are made for saving energy. The similar phones like Galaxy S4 Mini and HTC One Mini 2 ask for more energy. More precisely, Galaxy S5 Mini lasts longer. Only Xperia Z1 Compact knows better to save the battery. The phone has two power saving modes. The more extreme is Ultra Power Saving Mode with only black and white screen and several hours more of stand by just when you think the battery is dead.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Software
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini works on Android 4.4 KitKat with TouchWizz UI. Everything looks like on Galaxy S5, with just slight differences. The most of features and apps are taken from Samsung’s flagship, so the users will have access to S Health, S Voice, S Planner and S Remote. The good news is you can install or remove apps from internal memory to microSD which save the memory and gives you extra options.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Camera
The camera has just a half of pixels comparing the one from Galaxy S5. So, the Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini has 8MP sensor, but it managed to surprise us with outstanding results. The accuracy of colors is real, so the photos aren’t too light or to dark. The photos are rich in details, with just little washed out edges and some noise more in dark areas, but only when you zoom the photo.
The cam is working with LED flash. It’s useful and very practical, so the night photo sessions can start. There’s no pale and wash out faces at night because flash adjust its work very well. The colors are also better than on some similar models. Also, HD video is very good and it looks smoothly and full of details. The front-facing camera with 2.1MP gives enough details for video calls and selfies.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini Verdict
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini isn’t Samsung Galaxy S5 with one word more in the name. It lacks performances and camera from superb Galaxy S5. On the other hand, Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini keeps many useful features and apps which transform this phone to a true budget replacement for Galaxy S5. This phone is ideal for average user and even more of that. Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini isn’t the only “mini” out there, so you can take into consideration some other similar phones, like Sony Xperia Z1 Compact and HTC One Mini 2. The first one is much more powerful that S5 Mini, and the second one brings the outstanding speakers and design for this class. The biggest advantage of Samsung Galaxy S5 Mini is it doesn’t have any major advantages or disadvantages. It’s well balanced phone, even when it comes to price.