vivo gave me the opportunity to review their smartphones this year. Last March, reviewed the vivo V23 5G, an awesome phone with impressive cameras. This time, vivo sent me one of their new flagship phones for review, the vivo X80 5G. Is the vivo X80 worthy enough to compete with the other big boys in the smartphone market?
VIVO X80 5G REVIEW SPECS:
|OS:||Android 12 with Funtouch OS 12|
|Processor:||3.05 GHz MediaTek Dimensity 9000 5G Octa-Core processor | Mali-G710 MC10|
|Display:||6.78" 1080x2400, 20:9 ratio FHD+ AMOLED Display HDR10+ with 120Hz refresh rate and 240Hz touch sampling rate|
|Wireless Connections:||5G, Bluetooth 5.3, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6, NFC, A-GPS, GLONASS|
|Memory:||256 GB Internal Storage, 12 GB RAM|
|Connectors:||USB Type-C 2.0, OTG supported|
|Cameras:||50 Megapixels f/1.8 wide Sony IMX866 + 12 Megapixels f/2.0 Telephoto + 12 Megapixels f/2,0 ultra-wide (Main Cameras); 32 Megapixels f/2.5 ultra-wide (Front)|
|SIM Card Slots:||2x Nano SIM Cards required|
Unlike most smartphone packaging, the vivo X80 5G comes in a squared box. The premium look and feel of the box is similar to expensive jewelry boxes. I already sensed that vivo gave it a lot of attention to make customers feel good about their unboxing experiences.
Inside the package are the vivo X80 5G review unit, protective case, Type-C USB cable, USB Charger Head, earphones, earbuds, SIM Card ejector and User Manuals.
I appreciate vivo for including a different protective case for the X80 5G instead of the usual silicon case. Though it doesn’t full protect the phone, it doesn’t make the X80 5G thick. It also has the same color of my X80 5G review unit.
THE LOOKS AND FEEL
Nowadays, camera modules of smartphones become bigger, sometimes better, and other times outrageous. In the case of the vivo X80 5G, some people might find it ridiculously large but I think the camera design signifies vivo wants to take mobile photography and videography to a different level. Its big camera bump reminded me of a Windows smartphone I reviewed 9 years ago which also had the Zeiss partnership.
The rest of the X80 5G’s back panel is covered with a frosted glass finish. The good news is it doesn’t attract fingerprints like most glass panels in other phones. The bad news is it’s a bit slippery to hold, so I suggest to use the protective case that came with the package. Applying the case not only protects the phone from accidental drops, it also protects the expensive-looking camera module.
The X80 5G is bigger than its predecessor, the X70. It’s also heavier and thicker compared to the previous model. These differences didn’t hinder me from appreciating the phone. It feels solid and premium, as expected with a flagship smartphone.
Found on the right side of the X80 5G are the volume controls and power button. Notice how much the curved edges of the glass covers the side of the phone.
At the bottom are the SIM Card slot, Type-C USB port and speaker grille.
Unless you zoom in, you won’t notice the “Professional Photography” branding found on top of the X80 5G.
Overall, I really like the phone’s aesthetics and couldn’t stop admiring it. Most of my colleagues received the Cosmic Black color, which is nice by the way, but the Urban Blue I have right now catches a lot of attention whenever I flaunt it.
THE SOUND AND DISPLAY
The vivo X80 5G comes with a 6.78-inch AMOLED Display with a Full HD+ 2400×1080 resolution. There’s a punch-hole on top which houses the front camera, and the bottom part of the screen is where the in-display fingerprint scanner. Its 3D curved-edge display adds to the sleek aesthetics of the phone. This may be an issue to some users who prefer displays with flat surfaces. Personally, it hasn’t bothered me during my two-weeks of usage. Aside from the gorgeous screen, the X80 5G also has a 120Hz refresh rate which makes videos and screen navigation appear very smooth. No Gorilla Glass coating though.
Sound quality is loud and clear thanks to the X80 5G’s stereo speakers. As with most flagship smartphones, it doesn’t have a 3.5mm headphone jack but you can use the Type-C USB earphones included in the package or opt for a bluetooth wireless headphones.
As the flagship, we already have a good guess about the processor running under the hood. Since vivo has two flagship variants, the more popular Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 went to the X80 Pro. What the vivo X80 5G has is the new MediaTek Dimensity 9000 SoC, the counterpart of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. I have reviewed several phones powered by Dimensity chipsets and so far I’m impressed by its performance. Here are the benchmark scores of the vivo X80 5G with Dimensity 9000:
I am blown away by the Antutu Benchmark score of the X80 5G! It’s my first time to see it blow up to more than a million! PCMark score was a bit decent but expected more than what it received. With these scores, I can attest that the X80 5G is definitely, most absolutely capable of handling the smartphone’s daily tasks.
Storage is at 256GB, which is what brands usually equip in their flagship smartphones. And unlike it’s counterparts in the lower segments of the market, the X80 5G doesn’t have a Micro SD Card slot of extra storage. In case you filled up the internal storage of the phone, you can use your 5G or WiFi 6 to store your other files to the cloud. On the other hand, vivo is very generous providing the X80 5G with 12GB of memory.
Since we have the flagship Dimensity 9000 processor in our hands, we were very excited to test Genshin Impact with the X80 5G. We did not experience any lag even during long periods of gaming and gameplay was completely smooth even at highest 60fps setting, thanks to the 120Hz screen refresh rate. Playing both domain and open world content were a breeze. We also barely felt any heat thanks to its Ultra Large Liquid Cooling Vapor Chamber.
On the software side, the X80 5G has Android 12 pre-installed with FunTouch 12. The interface is easy to learn and I already got used to it since I have already used the vivo V23 5G. The only caveat I have here is the amount of bloatware vivo has pre-installed on the X80 5G. I am always bombarded with notifications from the V-Appstore. These can be turned off, but imagine those users who aren’t techie enough to know how to disable them.
The extraordinary cameras of the vivo X80 5G deserves a separate article, but due to time constraints and other commitments, we are including them here in our full review. The main cameras are composed of a 50 Megapixel f/1.8 Sony IMX866, 12 Megapixel f/2.0 Telephoto, and a 12 Megapixel Ultra-Wide angle. The front camera is a 32 Megapixel ultra-wide with an aperture of f/2.5.
Without any tinkering, the X80 5G took excellent photos, whether under daylight or dimly-lit venues. Most of the sample photos you see below were straight out of the camera. I enjoyed taking a lot of photos in the evening and was often surprised by the results. Bokeh portraits were also spot on, and you can even choose different types of bokeh styles. While I’m cool with phones oversaturating photos, I noticed that images taken with the X80 5G ZEISS mode were more controlled. These result to more natural-looking photos.
Here are some sample photos taken by the vivo X80 5G:
The X80 5G’s video capabilities embedded with ZEISS optics convinced me to use it more for content creation rather than using my mirrorless camera. For years, I’ve been wanting to create cinematic videos and the X80 5G helped me achieve that effortlessly. Here’s a sample video I took with ZEISS Cinematic Mode on:
What I also like about its video recording feature is its Active Centering OIS System. It kept my videos stable on 1080p or 4K, 30 fps or 60 fps.
THE BATTERY LIFE
Battery capacity of the vivo X80 5G is rated at 4,500 mAh. My usage consisting of 4 hours of video streaming, 1 hour of mobile gaming, 6 hours on 5G and the rest of the day on WiFi would last me for an average of 12 hours with at least 10% juice left. Unfortunately, for this flagship variant, it doesn’t have wireless charging (the X80 Pro has that feature.) It has an 80W fast charger that can fully charge the X80 5G in 40 minutes.
My experience with the vivo X80 5G convinced me to acquire my own unit next time. I am already sold with its cameras, and its performance for other aspects like gaming is already a bonus.
What I see challenging for the X80 series is its pricing. At P45,999, I just wished that vivo didn’t remove the water-resistance and wireless charging feature on the X80 5G. I still think vivo can compete with the big boys as they have the excellent cameras to back them up.
- Well-refined design
- Sexy 3D Curved Display with 120Hz refresh rate
- High-End processor
- Excellent cameras for both photos and videos
- Fast Charging
- No IP68 rating
- No wireless charging