Vivo V5 Plus Review

While the V5s centered around the idea of making a cheaper version of the V5, the V5 Plus does the opposite. In fact, it goes all out on improving the original V5 design and its specs.

Upon unboxing the Vivo V5 Plus, you’ll get:

• Vivo V5 Plus unit (1 pc)
• Warranty Card (1 pc)
• Quick Start Guide (1 pc)
• SIM card slot opener (1 pc)
• Clear Phone Protector (1 pc)
• USB Charging Cable (1 pc)
• Fast-charging Travel Charger (1 pc)
• Earphones (1 pair)

Build and Construction

Firstly, the outer shell of this 5.5-incher stands out from the rest of the phone’s physical components. The metallic finish remains, but there’s a bit of texture that makes the grip on the device feel comfortable. Unlike other Vivo phone models, the V5 Plus opts for curved line designs that run across its top end and bottom end, as opposed to straight lines. As I’ve stated multiple times before, I’m not really a fan of the latter kind of look, so this new design choice works well for me. It keeps the design of the back clean and simple.

Secondly, bonus points to Vivo for including a clear jelly-like body protector for the V5 Plus. Not only will the phone be immediately protected, but users will still get to see what the actual device looks like. The key aesthetic for the V5 Plus lies in its mute design. Nothing innovative or out-of-the-ordinary appears on the Vivo V5 Plus, yet at the same time, it’s the key strength of the outer build. Simply put, the V5 Plus avoids the pitfalls of either phone look bland and boring, or creating a smartphone that looks too gaudy. Truly, less is more.

And finally, Vivo also keeps the button placement of the V5. The lock and volume buttons remain on the right, for example. Meanwhile, the left side has the SIM card holder, and the bottom has the speaker grill, earphone jack port, and the micro-USB port. The upper left portion of the back contains the main camera, with its flash next to it. For the front, we’re looking at thinner side bezels, a physical home button on the bottom bezel, and at the top, the 20-megapixel front shooter with sensors on its sides. Speaking of which, we’ll get into the details of that powerful front cam later on.

OS, UI, and Apps

I’m a big fan of smartphones that keep the bloatware to a minimum, and the Vivo V5 Plus does not disappoint. From the get go, users receive only the essentials and a minimal amount of Vivo-endorsed apps like vivoCloud and EasyShare. Definitely a step up from other brands that, at worst, insert full advertisements into the phone.

Additionally, the Android 6.0 OS, skinned as Funtouch 3.0, works well and looks good. The design actually feels like it’s targeting the millenial market with a simplistic, almost ‘hipster’ design with two-color default icons and sans serif fonts. I haven’t mentioned this explicity before, but in general I’m a fan of simple, minimal designs that limit their use of colors. The icons of the Funtouch UI used here follow that minimalist approach. In fact, I might even say that it’s a little bit above similar competitors like the ZenUI or the MIUI.

Scrolling through the phone feels like a breeze, and the apps load fast. At 2.0 GHz and 4GB RAM, this should be expected of the phone, which should handle almost any workload. More on the internal specs later.

Camera

The true bread and butter of the V5 Plus lie in its fantastic photographs. First, the 16-megapixel rear camera doesn’t struggle to catch up to its more powerful selfie counterpart. Despite a lower resolution sensor, it still delivers vibrant, vivid images with great range, especially in areas with good lighting.

Meanwhile, the camera modes include Slow Motion, Ultra HD, Professional, Night, Anti-Shake, and Time Lapse. Besides these, there’s also Panorama, Beautify, and filters. While some cameras feature more modes, I feel that the Vivo V5 Plus provides all that you need, and in fact, sometimes, having too many modes can be really confusing.

For the selfie camera, the dual front shooter puts a 20-megapixel lens alongside an 8-megapixel lens. To be specific about this pairing, the 20-megapixel shooter takes the high-quality photos, while the second lens focuses on achieving the bokeh effect. Activating the bokeh effect isn’t difficult either, as it simply involves adjusting the aperture for a wider shot.

Besides, having the bokeh effect turned off will allow the user to access HDR and Enhanced Beautification. While I’m not exactly sure why they chose this setup, I do have to say I’m a bit disappointed that you can’t combine bokeh with the other modes.

Simply put, this front camera might be the best I’ve ever seen this year. The phone doesn’t rely on the bokeh effect to make the images look good, but instead, the bokeh effect acts as an optional way to make your photos stand out. Thus, even without the aforementioned effect, the selfie will look great.

Here are some photos taken with the Vivo V5 Plus:

100% cropped

Vivo V5 Plus front camera selfie sample

With bokeh effect

Performance and Benchmarks

The guts of the V5 Plus comprise of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 octa-core CPU clocked at 2.5GHz and 4GB RAM. In practice, the performance met our high expectations as no lags ever appeared during our play sessions with games like Dead Trigger 2 and Shadowrun Returns. Using this standard, expect the Vivo V5 Plus to contain the ability to play almost any game on the app store.

For the benchmark numbers, we got:

• AnTuTu – 63597
• PC Mark – 4780 (Work 2.0)
• 3D Mark – 459 (Sling Shot Extreme)

Battery Life

In terms of how long the V5 Plus will last you, the 3,160mAh non-removable battery ensures a whole day’s worth of moderate use. On the other hand, a constant video loop with all data turned off will net us over 12 hours of charge. But if you’re still worried that the juice might not last long with this phone, no need to worry. A fast-charging charger setup can charge the V5 Plus from zero to full in a little less than 2 hours. I’m a big fan of fast-charging phones, especially now in an age where we all use mobile data to access the internet, anywhere.

Conclusion

Overall, there’s a lot to like about the Vivo V5 Plus, especially considering the price point. At Php 19,990, you get a device with great specs that have just enough power to play games and advanced apps, paired with front and rear cameras comparable to professional lenses. My only word of caution lies with the phone’s lack of microSD or SD card support. Thus, any V5 Plus user will always have only 64 GB to store all their data. While it is indeed a non-problem if you’re just going to capture images, it might pose as a roadblock if you want to load the V5 Plus with games and apps.

Regardless, the phone still has enough features to command its retail price. With a relatively long battery life and a fast charging time, the Vivo V5 Plus will cover all your casual photography needs.

Positives
+ Good specs
+ Amazingly clear and crisp photos
+ The rear camera isn’t an afterthought
+ Decent RAM and competent GPU
+ Good battery life

Negatives
-Lack of microSD card support
-The V5 family all look the same

Related: Vivo V5s Review

Vivo V5 Lite Review 

Vivo V5 Plus Specs

OSFuntouch OS 3.0 (based on Android 6.0)
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 625 2.0GHz Octa-coren
Memory4GB
Display5.5-inches, 1920 x 1080 FHD, LCD/IPS/In-cell, tCorning Gorilla Glass 5 / 2.5Dn
Storage64GB
CameraFront 20MP f2.0 + 8MP f2.0 / Rear 16MP f2.0, tSupports Selfie Softlight and Rear Flash
SIMDual-SIM, Dual Standby, 1 Nano SIM + 1 Nano SIM
Battery3160mAh,
ColorGold
ConnectivityWifi 2.4GHz/5GHz, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 2.0, OTG
SensorsAccelerometer, Ambient Light Sensor, Proximity Sensor, E-compass, Gyroscope
OthersAK4376 Hi-Fi Chipset, Fast Charging Battery, Fingerprint Sensor, GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou,

More photos of the Vivo V5 Plus:

    
   

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