Oppo isn’t new to the Indian smartphone market, and their new phone isn’t exactly a mid-range device but has been priced liked one. The Chinese smartphone company has some of the fantastic and unique type of smartphones to offer with its widest range. These include one of the slimmest device as well as smartphones with amazing camera capabilities.
The new Mirror 5 packs a unique sheer of spark in the form of a prismatic back panel. Even though, there are many smartphones company focusing on quality these days, we hardly see a smartphone packing such solid and attractive design in this range of smartphone. The earlier company has launched many devices in the mid-range, but this has been made to give the premium feel, and that upmarket quality on the device was felt when we first hold the device.
Over the week’s usage, we developed the usability towards the device, all thanks to the new Color OS 2.1 on the device. So, if you think it only got the fancy back panel to show off rather than offering better specifications than its peers? Well, we unfold all that in the detailed review of the device.
Sporting a bi-metallic frame body, the Oppo Mirror 5 has a solid design language, as well as it is quite similar to its most of the devices in the market right now. There is some refreshment to the usual bar design with a diamond cut finish to the back panel. The front and the back have been fitted with a glass screen to give it a smooth finish, and that’s why the rear feels slippery. Though, the popping out plastic edges make it a lot easier to hold the device in one hand.
The Mirror 5 has a very simple design, and I like it a lot. Now talking about the ports on the device, the left edge houses the power button while the right edge packs volume rocker keys. Placed such as it’s easy to reach to the button. And since it is not a large size device, managing buttons is quite an easy task. The bottom edge has microUSB and microphone attached to it; whereas the audio jack can be found on the top edge with an IR blaster.
The branding can be seen on the top centre of the rear while the camera modules are placed in the top left corner of the device. Aligning to it is the placement of loudspeaker at the bottom left corner on the back of the device, which is quite good in terms of the output. The device weighs heavy for its size at 160 grams, all thanks to the metal frame and solid body.
It is not usual for mid-range devices to pack IR remote sensors on them, but Oppo did the unthinkable, and it was a good thought, as these days the features like this are useful. Allowing you to control your smart appliances enabled with Infrared, you can operate them using the IR Remote feature on the Mirror 5 smartphone.
Overall, the design of Mirror 5 is the USP of the device; you can flaunt the back panel using the device in public. The device comes in two colors: Purple and White. Our review unit was of Purple color, and we adored it.
There is no better way to say this; I hated the display on Mirror 5. The 5-inch qHD (960 x 540) isn’t on par with the current standard of HD displays in the mid-range smartphones. It is an IPS panel and shows 16 Million colors as well, but is no good for media consumptions like watching YouTube videos, and playing HD movies. All because you won’t have a great experience watching them on a lower display resolution.
Not all the users would like to go with 5.5-inch devices. And Since the market has been crowded with a large display devices. There is somewhere in the market, a need of display with around 5-inch size, which are just easy to fit in the hand. We are at least expecting 1280 x 720 resolution display on a device while Xiaomi Mi4 and Lenovo K3 Note are such devices that packs Full HD display for much less price than Mirror 5.
The legibility of the device under sunlight and artificial light is not up to the mark. And we think it’s because of the extra glass layer on the display. Though, the color vibrancy and saturation is quite well, and that’s why the reading or internet browsing on the device was satisfactory.
The device does have an LED notification light, and it would blink in three conditions. One if you get any notification, the second is when the battery is low and third when the device is on charging. You can switch OFF and ON the notification light from the Display settings on the device according to your needs.
What Mirror 5 lacks in resolution, it gains in offering a feature named Eye protection display. Turning the feature ON would give your eyes soothness. According to research, the blue light shortwave in the visible spectrum is harmful to eyes and this feature makes sure that it doesn’t pass through this display. So, there is a plus point for a display with even a low resolution screen, all thanks to Oppo’s innovative features.
There is a major change on this Oppo handset in terms of the OS version, as it packs company’s Color OS 2.1 out of the box, which is based on the latest Android Lollipop 5.1.1 version. But to wrap up in a brief, there is not much changed in terms of design aesthetics of the UX. There is still no app drawer present on the device, and you can still access the music player with a swipe from the left.
With similar icons and settings, there is not much changed on the new Color OS 2.1. The signature quick settings of the stock Android Lollipop is not used on the device. Though, the one thing that is quite improved on the device was the snappy performance of the UX. Moreover, the gesture and motion features are similar to what we saw on the Neo 5, which we reviewed almost two months back.
The UI reminiscences the look of iOS, not just in the home screens, but you can see that in the Camera app too. Talking about the themes personalization, you can enjoy a lot of changes in terms of wallpapers, screen lock and total personalization of the icons. You’ll find only two themes pre-installed on the device, one named as default theme that you see in the images above. Second is the Jelly Bean theme, which I don’t know why it made sense for the company to include even in the list.
Multitasking on the device has been improved a lot with a new version of Color OS. There was around 1.4GB free RAM available on the device, and it is a good sign that UI manages the RAM allocation very strictly. So, it’s a green light for us to launch as many as apps possible on a Mirror 5 without worrying it is getting slowed down drastically.
The internal storage available to users out of the box was about 10GB from the 16GB storage space. You don’t have to worry about the storage space, as the device has a microSD card slot for expansion. Moreover, the potential buyers of the device would be pleased to know that it can also detect the USB OTG drive. But there’s a catch, you need to enable it from the settings. Just go to the Settings App and head over to the ‘More’ option, and tap on it. Now you’ll see an option to enable the OTG connection, toggle the button to ON in front of it. If you want more tips about this device, head over to our tips and tricks guide for the device.
Hardware & Performance
The device is powered by a 64-bit Quad-core Snapdragon 410 processor, which clocks at 1.2 GHz, and is plentiful to serve the heavy loads. Alongside is the Adreno 306 GPU offering you the graphics processing unit that can handle the big games, such as Asphalt 8, GTA, etc. There is a 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage combination, which is persistent with SD410 processor.
Now that we have touched the gaming part let’s talk about how it handles the gameplay. So, far we have played games like Riptide GP2, Dead Trigger 2, as well as Asphalt 8 on the device, and there was no occasion that we didn’t like the gaming experience on this device, as it was handling it pretty well with no lags. Though, switching between three games did make it twitch a little over performance.
The Benchmark score of the device was not over the chart but was decent enough. For Antutu the device score around 23000 while the Vellamo score for Browser was around 2100, and Multi-core performance was 1100. These numbers are the theoretical counts of how a device can perform. But if I honestly talk about the performance, the combination of the chipset, RAM and storage on Mirror 5 is a sign of good smartphone. Moreover, you get a snappy UI with it.
That was all good stuff about the performance, now you need to hear why it heats up to a considerable amount that is intolerable. The gaming and continues usage of the Camera app and various services being used on the device made it heat up a lot, although, it’s not an alarming issue about the device, but rather a note for you that it is not a device for heavy usage.
We did the Browsing test on the device, and the touch response was quite fast on its display. The Zoom-in and the Zoom-out feature worked quite alright to our satisfaction. Though, in our thoughts a 5-inch display is not an ideal device for web browsing on a phone.
The cameras might not be great in the megapixel count for this category of smartphones, as there are devices with at least 13MP rear cameras on them in the mid-range. But the Mirror 5 packs an 8MP rear camera with f/2.2 aperture number, which is as best as it gets on an 8MP camera module. There are not many 8MP rear cameras in the market that can take very good captures until Mirror 5 decided to show up in the market.
The color reproduction and white saturation is brilliant for a camera with this megapixel count. And if you know your way around smartphone photography, then you could do a lot of creative stuff with this camera on the device.
The rear camera is a good daylight snapper, as on a bright daylight you would love the sharp captures with accurate colors. The autofocus on the device is quite fast and effective, as well as the image processing is quick too. Talking about the app usability, it is quite clean like on older Color OS versions, but has been improved certainly for a snappy performance.
When put in landscape mode, you’ll find the camera modes, shutter and gallery view buttons on the right side. Switching between photo and video is easy, just swipe up and you’ll switch to video mode while a swipe down to go back to photo mode. You can switch the camera to the front by tapping on icon present on the top left corner, whereas the flashlight can be turned ON through the icon on bottom left corner.
The front camera on the device is quite good when compared with other devices in the market having 5 MP shooter. The selfie camera is pretty good for a mid-range device and produces nice shots for your selfie craze.
The 2420 mAh battery on the device might not be an ideal battery for any other Android smartphone. But it’s almost perfect for the Mirror 5. The reason being is that the display is of low resolution, so it should technically use less battery, and that’s what was our experienced.
Over the period of the 24 hours the battery did pretty great job, where we tried some of the graphic intense games, put it on Wi-Fi continuously, did make it stay awake most of the time even when we were not really using it. Then, came the time for social media apps, the Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, we used all of our active social accounts on it, and you’ll be surprised that we got Screen-on-time (SOT) of more than 7 hours. Though, remember, we kept the brightness at the minimum visible levels.
Overall, the battery on the Mirror 5 is an ideal candidate for you even if you travel a lot. There are special power saving modes available on the device in Settings area that can enhance the battery life of the device so that the battery juice lasts more.
The device packs necessary set of connectivity options on the device, and we thought that is more than enough for a mid-ranger. Since, the device packs 64-bit processor; you’ll see a 4G LTE network connection on the device. The signal strength and quality are quite good, as well as Wi-Fi connectivity is great too.
Talking about the IR remote feature, it works fine but isn’t that responsive. We thought, maybe it was some connection interference between two connected devices. It seemed fine most of the time, and that’s as good as you can expect from a mid-range smartphone.
The device is pretty much an average joe among the plethora of devices in mid-range. For a 16K pricing, it is quite hard to recommend this device, even though, there’s nothing wrong with this device. Well except the low resolution of the display, the specifications of the device are quite good. Besides, the SD410 performance is more than satisfying on Mirror 5 with Color OS 2.1, which is again based on the latest Android Lollipop 5.1.1 version and comes out of the box.
The competition is tough with the likes of Xiaomi Mi 4, Motorola Moto G Third Generation, and Lenovo K3 Note. With all of the above devices holding an advantage over the Mirror 5 pricing and specifications, it would be hard for anyone to get this device against others in the same range. I suggest you go with this device only if pricing is not a factor for you, and you’re looking for a device with solid stylish build, as well as a good battery life.