HONOR 20S – smartphone review

Gaming Hardware


To the editors of the portal Gamemag.ru a new smartphone came to the test HONOR 20S. The gadget is sold in three colors: blue-violet, midnight black and ice white. In the first case, users get a very nice overflow on the case, resembling a letter S. The price in Russia is 19 990 rubles.

In the official store for the order, the company gives a bonus to the purchase of branded sports headphones Sport Pro A66, Sportexternal battery AP10QC 10,000 mAh or fitness tracker Band 5.

The HONOR 20S comes in a classic white cardboard box. The package includes the smartphone itself, charger, meter wire USB Type-C, a quick user guide, warranty card and a clip for removing SIM cards.

The size of the smartphone is 152.9 x 72.7 x 7.4 mm. Weight – 159 grams.

The blue-violet version came to us – it looks very pretty. The first thing that attracts attention is, of course, a chic gradient effect on the glass cover of the case and the metal edging.

The smartphone shines very beautifully in the light, dynamically changing the S-shaped flare depending on the lighting and the angle at which you look at the gadget. The effect is constantly changing, exfoliating into different shades of blue and violet colors, and may even disappear completely.

Build quality at a high level. The HONOR 20S has a slim body and is nice to hold with one hand. It is not very slippery and lightweight at the same time. Fingerprints remain quite noticeable, but not as much as, say, Honor 8X.

The camera sticks out of the case, which is why the smartphone is unevenly lying on a flat surface. For reliability, I would still buy a protective case for him.

The HONOR 20S has side frames – 3.5 mm on the right and left, if you count along with the steel edging of the device. Above and below they already occupy 4.5 mm and 7.5 mm, respectively.

Unlike the regular version of the Honor 20 or 20 Pro, the 20S instead of a hole for the camera at the left corner has a drop-shaped cutout in the center from the top, which goes 9 mm into the screen. It can be hidden in the settings menu with a black bar on which operator data, time and so on will be displayed.

Immediately above the cutout is a speaker and indicator light. The left end is empty, and on the right there is a neat volume rocker and a device power button.

At the bottom end are: 3.5 mm headset jack, USB Type-C input, microphone and one speaker. The sound quality produced by the speaker is not bad, but in bass compositions it lacks depth, and in some – volume. Pop music and podcasts sound good.

At the top there is a SIM card slot and another microphone (the main thing is not to mix it up). You can put two “SIM cards”, but then it won’t work out put into the device MicroSD to expand available memory.

On the reverse side are: a neatly designed triple camera and a fingerprint recognition indicator. The latter works instantly, even if your fingers are wet. Only if you are very wet, it will not respond to touch. In other cases, unlocking occurs at lightning speed.

6.15 inch IPSanti-glare screen has a resolution of 2312 x 1080 pixels (415 ppi). The image is clear, bright and contrast. In the options to save battery, you can enable lower resolution, but you will not see small details when watching videos and high-quality images. The maximum brightness value is 480 nits. Contrast – 1200: 1. No HDR support.

Since the aspect ratio of the screen is 19.5: 9, the standard 16: 9 content comes with black stripes on the sides that are visible in the dark. This is a common situation when it comes to IPS displays. For the perfect black color, you need an already more expensive OLED.

Due to the excellent density of dots in FHD +, the text does not blur into pixels, even if you look at the screen closely. In the options, you can select a brighter mode, as well as change the color temperature.

Unlike Honor 9X Premiumwhich we tested at the end of 2019, in bright mode at 20S less acid colors, but too much cold tint appears in the image. Therefore, the “usual” option with a neutral color temperature still remains optimal. You can turn on the “bright” mode, but with a “warm” color temperature, to slightly compensate for the excess blue spectrum.

When you turn on the “Vision Protection” option, the image becomes too yellow even at the minimum level, so I do not recommend it. Moreover, it is not clear how this can protect the eyes and from what. In order to preserve vision, it is better to just slightly lower the brightness at the screen, especially at night.

The core of the system is an eight-core processor HiSilicon Kirin 710 (4 core Cortex-A73 @ 2.2 GHz and four core Cortex-A53 @ 1.7 GHz), which works in conjunction with a graphics adapter Mali-g51. The processor is already two years old and it has become outdated. The slightly more budget Honor 9X Premium uses its improved version, so if you want to take a phone for games, it is better to pay attention to 9X Premium.

The HONOR 20S has 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal memory. As I wrote above, it can be expanded due to MicroSD – flash drives up to 512 GB are supported.

The system is powered by a built-in 3340 mAh non-removable battery. The device charges from zero to 50% in 50 minutes. A full charge occurs in exactly 2 hours. The gadget is enough for a day of active use, if you do not play complex 3D games.

Shell Magic UI 2.1.0 on the basis of the ninth “Android” it works pretty fast overall and looks pretty, but sometimes it lacks fluidity. Honor 9X Premium Shell – EMUI 9.1.0 works a little faster. Perhaps this is due to the updated processor. At the same time, they look almost identical in appearance.

In the test AnTuTu Benchmark test sample HONOR 20S scored 152 986 points (in brackets are the latest Honor 9X Premium data. Honor 8X had 127,930 points in the test in 2018):

CPU – 59 817 (64 041);
GPU – 24,038 (29,120);
Mem – 36,850 (51,995);
Ux – 32,281 (35,953);
TOTAL – 152 986 (181 109).

Under heavy loads, the temperature of the battery and processor can increase to 42-45 degrees (the values ​​are fixed in the AnTuTu stress test) – approximately the same as in the Honor 9X Premium.

We tested several demanding projects. The first on the list was Asphalt 9: Legends – The most beautiful race on smartphones. An advanced graphics mode is available in the options, in which the picture looks pretty. But it can be seen that the image on the HONOR 20S is simplified compared to premium smartphones. At the same time, the game does not always work smoothly – slowdowns are visible. During a long gaming session, we did not notice throttling.

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds for some reason, it immediately sets the average settings and a limited frame rate. So the game looks pretty faded. But you can manually select high graphics settings, a high frame rate, turn on anti-aliasing and shadows, as well as the option of dynamic auto-tuning in case of performance decline. As a result, the graphics become noticeably prettier, the frame rate is approximately doubled, and the game as a whole goes smoothly even during hot shootings.

Mobile Call of duty it goes better, offering super-stable engine performance and smoother control, but at the same time, the details are limited by low settings, and the frame rate is medium (it’s not entirely clear what this means, because, apparently, there are stable 60 FPS). Of the additional improvements, you can only include depth of field. In general, the graphics on the HONOR 20S look fine, but some objects, like cars, spoil the view with square wheels with textures that are too blurry.

World of tanks blitz It works relatively smoothly at the maximum possible graphics settings with HD textures and improved sound, but FPS crashes when smoke effects from burning tanks appear in the frame. Therefore, some settings still have to be lowered for better control.

During testing, the phone became warm, but did not overheat. In general, the gadget works well with games, but the Honor 9X Premium does it better and costs a little cheaper.

HONOR 20S streams and plays 1080p / 60FPS video without any problems. It also reads 4K / 30FPS well, but it does not make sense to use such clips on this smartphone, since the device’s FHD + screen does not allow you to see all UltraHD details, automatically scaling the stream to 1080p.

Photos taken with the HONOR 20S are very similar to those taken with the Honor 9X Premium, or slightly better. The main camera of the smartphone consists of three modules: the main one on 48 MP (f / 1.8 aperture) wide-angle to 8 MP (f / 2.4 aperture) and auxiliary on 2 MP (f / 2.4 aperture).

In the settings, you can select the mode of 48 MP (4: 3), 12 MP (4: 3) (recommended), 9 MP (1: 1) and 8 MP (18.6: 9).

With auto-tuning, the built-in AI helps, provided that you do not use 48 MP mode. But in terms of quality, 12 MP images turn out to be about the same. Only the resolution of the image changes.

Happy photos come out crisp. In the evening and at night, the image may be blurry in dark corners, but overall the quality of the pictures is at a good level. Especially when you consider that we have a smartphone in the price range up to 20 000 rubles.

By choosing the recommended settings (12 MP), you get zoom and widescreen shooting. True, in the latter case, you will observe a lot of soap at the edges of the frame, especially if you shoot in the evening.

In addition, AI can sometimes cut small details when trying to pull out the light, but basically, even at night, nice pictures come out on the main camera.

The HONOR 20S can record video in the formats: 1080p / 60FPS (16: 9), 1080p / 30FPS (16: 9), 720p / 30FPS (16: 9) and 1080p / 30FPS (18.7: 9). In all modes, there is an approximation (in Honor 9X Premium there was no zoom), and wide-angle shooting is available only at 30 FPS.

The videos are not bad, but they don’t grab stars from the sky. As in the case of the Honor 9X Premium, the HONOR 20S does not have normal optical stabilization and support for recording in 4K format.

Front selfie camera on 24 MP with F / 2.0 aperture makes good selfies, the quality of which is more than enough for video chatting, Instagram and avatars.

The smartphone supports 4G Cat 13, 400Mbps TD-LTE / 4G LTE FDD / 3G WCDMA / 2G GSM wireless networks; Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac, 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz; Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth BT4.2, BLE, HWA; USB 2.0 Type-C and radio.

The gadget can work in 4G LTE TDD B38 and 4G LTE FDD B1 / B3 / B4 / B7 / B8 / B20 standards. And unlike the Honor 9X Premium, the HONOR 20S has Nfc.

HONOR 20S – A thin, light and elegant smartphone with an excellent screen, a chic gradient overflow on the case (in the blue-violet version) and a good camera. Many will appreciate the presence of a 3.5 mm headset jack along with a USB Type-C input. The device is slightly inferior to Honor 9X Premium in terms of power, battery capacity and due to the presence of a drop-shaped cutout instead of a retractable selfie camera, but it wins in terms of a more attractive design, better display image quality and the presence of NFC. If you are looking for a compact smartphone with excellent build and with all the basic functions for the right price, then you can take a closer look at the HONOR 20S, the more it fully supports the services Google.

Author: ACEediting: Skyerist.

Smartphone photo: Alexey Olkin.



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