Honor 50 test: an attractive smartphone... and equipped with Google services!

Who I am
Aina Martin
@ainamartin
Author and references

Honor is making a comeback in the mid-range segment with the Honor 50. A smartphone that intends to carve out a place for itself in this disputed market, and affirm the new ambitions of the Chinese firm, now independent of Huawei.

Presentation

Although technically freed from Huawei's grip since its sale in November 2020, the Honor brand has remained low profile in the international market since then. Compatible with Google services, the Honor 50 is therefore the smartphone supposed to allow the brand to reconnect with the French public. But many brands have rushed into the breach and are competing with it.




The Honor 50 shines brightly.

Launched at €549 in its 6/128 GB version (€599 for 8/256 GB), the Honor 50 now faces good devices such as the Realme GT or the Motorola G100. This price segment has not been forgotten by Samsung either, which has positioned itself well with the very convincing Galaxy A52s 5G, which is also offered at an even more affordable price. Smartphones to which it is possible to compare the Honor 50, and will allow us to verify if the Chinese manufacturer has the means of its ambitions.



Ergonomics and design

In this context, Honor must make itself visible. That's good, the copy of Honor 50 that we received sports a color that is original to say the least, which reminds us of our best disco years. More sober versions (in black or green) also exist. Once the glare has passed, we see that the finish is quite good.


The Honor 50 is a relatively light smartphone.


Its weight of 175 grams is relatively light despite its large screen (for dimensions of 160 x 73,8 x 7,8 mm). The latter also occupies 90% of the front surface and displays a central punch where its front photo module is housed. On the back, the quadruple photo sensor is divided into two circles which feature a particularly successful metallic finish.


It has no protection or waterproofing certification, which is the case for the A52s 5G, for example. It certainly seems able to withstand a little rain, but this absence is starting to become annoying in the 500 € segment. We also regret the absence of 3,5 mm mini-jack and microSD ports, even if it still has 128 or 256 GB of storage. It is however possible to insert two SIM cards.


We deplore the absence of watertightness certification.

The smartphone is future-oriented in terms of connectivity. It is compatible with 5G, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2 and has an NFC chip for contactless payments. The fingerprint sensor located under the screen is reactive and the buttons placed on the edges are easily accessible.

Screen

The screen... this is an aspect in which the Honor 50 shows great abilities. It is equipped with a 6,57-inch OLED panel, defined in Full HD+ (1080 x 2340 px), which offers a dynamic refresh rate of 120 Hz. The rate then varies automatically between 60 and 120 Hz. It is possible to choose a rate of 60 Hz to use less battery power, but also to opt for constant 120 Hz, for maximum fluidity.




The screen of the Honor 50 is a success.

The maximum brightness reaches 683 cd / m², which makes it readable even in sunlight. Conversely, it can drop to 3,3 cd/m² for nighttime consultation without dazzling the eyes. Oled obliges, the contrast is almost infinite. The afterglow time is nil and the tactile delay controlled (68 ms).

Colorimetry DeltaE = 1,5

Out of the box, the smartphone displays a delta E of 1,7, which is already perfect. On the other hand, its temperature is then measured at 7332 Kelvins, which seems a little too cold. Going from the "Vivid colors" profile to "normal colors", the temperature settles at 6305 kelvins, which is very close to the video standard (6500 K). The delta E goes a little further in perfection (1,5). Thus calibrated, the screen becomes really very pleasant to use on a daily basis.

performances

The Honor 50 is equipped with the Snapdragon 778G coupled with 6/8 GB of RAM and 128/256 GB of storage. For our part, we tested the second version, which is therefore the best equipped. The SoC in question turns out to be a very good pick on all the smartphones that are equipped with it to date. On our ViSer test protocol, it scored 96 in multitasking. It therefore remains fluid in all circumstances, even with many open windows.

The Qualcomm chip shows great capabilities in video games, and scored 135. It ran our protocol at more than 75 frames per second. You will therefore be able to indulge in Call of Duty and other Genshin Impact without making too many concessions... and while maintaining a reasonable temperature. Obviously, this has an impact on the battery. This is not a device designed for very long gaming sessions, but it does very well when called upon.

Our performance tests are carried out with viSer, the application developed by the company SmartViser.

Photo

The mobile has a quadruple photo sensor, consisting in particular of a 108 Mpx wide-angle lens whose lens opens at f / 1,9. It is accompanied by an ultra wide-angle module of 8 Mpx (f / 2,2), but also macro and depth modules of 2 Mpx each (optics f / 2,4).


The layout of the photo sensors is original.

What to compare it for example to the Realme GT, which offered a suitable rendering, much more balanced than that of the A52s 5G.

Module principal Ultra wide-angle module Module macro Depth module
108 megapixels 8 megapixels 2 megapixels 2 megapixels
f / 1,8 f / 2,2 f / 2,4 f / 2,4
eq. 26 mm eq. 17mm / /

Module principal : 108 Mpx, f/1,9, éq. 26 mm

The Honor 108's 50MP main module captures shots just under 12MP (3904 x 2928px) by default. It takes advantage of pixel-binning technology, but for its part merges nine photosites into one (instead of four most of the time) in order to capture more light when it runs out.

Realme GT (eq. 26 mm, f / 1,8, ISO 249, 1/125 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 503, 1/100 s)
enlarge

By day, the shot is quite good, but one thing is clear: the photo of the Realme GT, certainly better defined, offers more sharpness and sharpness. This can be seen in particular on the cover, or more simply thanks to the color patterns at the bottom left.

These same small beads, however, allow us to see that the colors of the Honor 50 are more vivid. This higher saturation tends to boost the overall contrast. The face of the lion makes it possible to realize this.

Realme GT (eq. 26 mm, f / 1,8, ISO 6464, 1/15 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 6400, 1/10 s)
enlarge

In darker conditions, the Honor 50 opts for a largely accentuated contrast. This allows it to roughly render the scene despite obvious underexposure and desaturated colors. We still lose a lot of readability.

The Realme GT captures significantly more light, which helps retain colors better. Despite the appearance of digital noise and an obvious loss of detail (see the faces), the rendering is much better.

Mode 108 Mpx

It is of course possible to capture shots in full definition (12032 x 9024 px). This mode does not always bring a significant change on smartphones. We isolated an area of ​​the same size (0,90 Mpx) on each of the shots. You can see the difference in definition.

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 284, 1/50 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 503, 1/100 s)
enlarge

In bright conditions, this mode impresses. It makes it possible to obtain a precision and a clearness largely higher than those of the initial photograph. The colorimetry is also modified, and the colors are a little too saturated. The gain is obvious, and we advise you to use this mode for the most important shots. The other side of the coin, the photos weigh up to 30 MB. Even on a 128 GB model, this can quickly become a problem.

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 6400, 1/10 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 26 mm, f / 1,9, ISO 6400, 1/10 s)
enlarge

At night, the Honor 50 does not transform the test. Unlike the previous scene, the gain here is almost nil. Unless you absolutely want to crop the shot, we don't advise you to use it. Especially since the shots weigh around 20 MB.

Module ultra grand-angle : 8 Mpx, f/2,2, eq. 17mm 120°

Like all of its congeners, the Honor 50 is equipped with an ultra wide-angle. Unfortunately, this type of sensor is rarely efficient in this price segment. The smartphone is no exception to the rule and delivers unconvincing performance on our formidable test scene.

Realme GT (eq. 16 mm, f / 2,3, ISO 191, 1/60 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 17 mm, f / 2,2, ISO 163, 1/50 s)
enlarge

No big surprise, even during the day. The result is more or less similar for both smartphones. Once again, the rendering of the Honor 50 is a little more contrasting (see the lion), but less sharp than that of the Realme GT. Once again, we see that a slightly pink tint has fallen on the left photo.

Realme GT (eq. 16 mm, f / 2,3, ISO 7104, 1/15 s)

Honor 50 (éq. 17 mm, f / 2,2, ISO 4340, 1/15 s)
enlarge

At night, the Honor 50 does not shine at all, but does better in exercise than the Realme model. The scene is certainly difficult to read, but is still more usable than that of its competitor. However, do not expect miracles.

Front module, video

A 32 Mpx sensor whose lens opens at f / 2,2 is available at the front. The rendering is good, but we expected more sharpness. The module seems to have a little trouble managing the light peaks and the general color seems a little pale to us. We would therefore have liked a slightly more saturated result – even if it is possible to edit on the fly. As with its competitors, it is always more complicated when the light is lacking. In portrait mode, the bokeh is well simulated on short hair, but can be easily deceived in the case of flyaways. The wide angle of view, on the other hand, makes it easy to take group selfies.

The smartphone is capable of filming up to 4K at 30 fps, which has become normal in this sector. Once again, the white balance is not optimal. We could also expect better in terms of autofocus and stabilization. We therefore recommend the Full HD mode at 60 fps, which is much more pleasant to consult.

Autonomy

This Honor 50 has a 4300 mAh battery. On our Viser test protocol, it managed to last 16 h 40 min in mixed use. An honorable score, which allows him to hold on for a big day. The competitors of the day are nevertheless better, Samsung in the lead. It should be noted, however, that this score was obtained using variable refresh at 120 Hz.

If the device does not display champion stamina, it makes up for it well on the cooldown. It took us 38 minutes to fully charge it. It is this time much more effective than the others. Twenty minutes can recover about 60% battery. So it's convincing overall. On the other hand, we deplore the absence of wireless charging, which is still often the case in this tariff segment.

Our battery tests are automated by viSer, the application developed by the company SmartViser. The results obtained with viSer come from measurements carried out in real conditions of use (calls, SMS, videos, launching of applications, web browsing, etc.).

Repairability

This smartphone obtained an index of 5,8 in repairability. A careful look at the details allows us to better understand this result. Honor thus promises excellent software monitoring and remote assistance in the event of a problem, but is much less convincing about the availability of parts and their price. Dismantling is rather simple, but requires very specific tools. The task is therefore far from easy.

Sustainability

Our sustainability score helps determine the sustainable aspect of the smartphone for both the consumer and the environment. It is based on the repairability index, durability criteria (protection index, standard connectors, warranty period and updates, etc.) and an assessment of CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policies. . You will find all the details of the analysis in our article presenting the sustainability score.

Highlights

  • Nice Oled screen.

  • Snapdragon 778G still as efficient.

  • Really fast charging.

  • Convincing 108MP mode.

Weak points

  • Average photography experience.

  • No waterproof certification or microSD port.

  • Autonomy could have been better.

Conclusion

Note globale

With the Honor 50, the Chinese brand offers a rather balanced smartphone. Equipped with a very nice screen and a powerful chip, it offers the performance that we are entitled to expect from a device of its ilk. In photos, it holds its rank against competition that is struggling to shine on this point, at a comparable price. Its average autonomy is however compensated by a really fast recharge. We may regret a somewhat poor connection, the absence of protection certification and an overcoat that deserves a little polishing, but the general experience is at the level. If you like its neat design (and incidentally glittery), this Honor 50 could seduce you.

Sub Notes
  • Ergonomics and design
  • Screen
  • performances
  • Photo
  • Autonomy
  • Repairability
  • Sustainability
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