Realme is a well-known smartphone brand in the midrange market, mainly due to its bang for buck devices. These smartphones from Realme not only offered well-rounded specs for its price but also on user experience. Earlier this month we were able to get our hands on both the Realme 5 and Realme 5 Pro. While the Realme 5 Pro is getting the spotlight thanks to its higher specs, its smaller brother, the Realme 5 is also something to be considered in your purchase. Are the minor downgrades from the Pro variant still make it a compelling smartphone? Let’s find out
|Specs||Realme 5||Realme 5 Pro|
|Processor||Snapdragon 665||Snapdragon 712|
|RAM||3GB / 4GB||4GB / 6GB / 8GB|
|GPU||Adreno 610||Adreno 616|
|Storage||32GB / 64GB / 128GB||64GB /1 28GB|
|Rear Camera||12MP + 8MP + 2MP +2MP|
48MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP
|Front Camera||13MP Front Camera|
16MP Front Camera
|Display||6.5″ 1600 x 720p||6.3″ 2340 x 1080p|
|Battery||5000 mAh||4035 mAh|
|OS||Android 9 + ColorOS 6|
Android 9 + ColorOS 6
|Price||3+32 – Php 6,990|
3+64 – Php 7,990
4+128 – Php 9,990
An advantage that the Realme 5 has over its bigger brother is the bigger 6.5″ Display. Albeit in a lower resolution at 1600 x 720p compared to the Pro’s 1080p 6.3″ display. The stock dark violet wallpaper helps hide the dewdrop notch.
Much like the Pro variant, the Realme 5 has a darker glossy crystal-like finish. Despite having an attractive design, the back is a fingerprint magnet, so having a clear case is recommended. The fingerprint sensor is well-positioned and easy to access in spite of the large 6.5″ footprint.
The right side of the Realme 5 only reveals the power/lock button.
One of the significant advantages of the Realme 5 Pro over the vanilla variant that we have aside from performance is the charging port and connectivity. The 5 Pro uses USB Type-C while the plain Realme 5 is a generation behind with micro-USB. A difference in charging ports means that the Realme 5 doesn’t have the 20w VOOC 3.0 feature of the Pro; Instead, it uses only 10w charging.
Powering Realme’s latest budget offering is the Snapdragon 665 SoC. Our review unit comes with 4GB RAM and 128GBs of storage. The Realme 5 still feels snappy without any lags or stutters after installing all of my apps and games. The Phone doesn’t get as hot during our benchmark process and even on gameplay.
The Realme 5 runs ColorOS 6.0 on top of Android 9 Pie. While ColorOS 6 isn’t one of the cleanest and most intuitive Android skin, it has gone a long way since the first Realme smartphone, Realme C1. The App Market lets you install a selection of apps during the set-up phase of the phone. Its convenience depends upon whether the app shows you a list that you would prefer, else you’ll be disappointed, and press skip instead. Nonetheless, it is still a great feature as it helps make the setup process more comfortable.
On this day in 2019, it’s mandatory for flagship phones to have more than two cameras. The Realme 5, on the other hand, uses four cameras. A 12MP primary shooter, An 8MP ultrawide lens, A 2MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth sensor. The Realme 5 has the same sensors of the Realme 5 Pro except for a 48MP camera instead of 12.
Next is a comparison between the main/normal camera mode and portrait mode. When taking pictures with a non-busy background, Normal mode does a better job compared to portrait mode. In our Portrait mode image, BB-8’s head has softer edges and is slightly blurred out compared to the standard picture. Also, the portrait mode focuses more on the center with a better focus on the lower center part of the BB-8 compared to the very slight blur in the normal mode.
Macro mode is an enjoyable tool to use. There’s not much to complain about except in the significant loss of a crisp image since the Realme 5 only uses a 2MP shooter. One weird thing about the macro mode is it usually darkens the edges of the image as seen with our BB-8, flower and leaf pictures. Nonetheless, you’ll be more delighted that the Realme 5 can take close-up shots rather than complain about the camera’s quality.
Nightscape or low light mode is the next big thing for smartphones this 2019. Each brand and phone does the process differently with some flagships having an edge on a hardware level compared to others relying on software. The 12MP main camera suffers a lot in low lighting conditions with its ability to properly focus on having the most impact. Nightscape mode brings more color to the image with aggressive post-processing and contrast, but it doesn’t help in focus. I usually find myself using the nightscape mode more often, especially if the subject is under poor lighting conditions just for the sake of having better colors next to the brightness boost.
Getting a better focus on little to no light is definitely hard on the main camera, even with the help of nightscape mode. Using the ultrawide lens with nightscape brings more satisfaction in terms of image clarity despite a grainier background.
Taking selfies on the Realme 5 is adequate with the portrait mode being more aggressive compared to the rear cameras. The blurring process of the Realme 5’s portrait mode brightens the background and effectively removes the current lines and the window of the building in the background.
The bigger footprint of the Realme 5 over the Realme 5 Pro is a double-edged sword in terms of display since the Realme 5 has a lower resolution despite having more screen real estate. On the other hand, the bigger footprint translates to the Realme 5 having a bigger battery at 5,000 mAh compared to the 5 Pro’s 4,035 mAh.
The Realme 5 starts at Php 6,990 for a 3GB RAM + 32GB ROM variant which gives you a competitive SoC and it’s one of the few, if not, first quad-camera under the sub-10k market. Our review unit with Php 4GB RAM + 128GB ROM retails for Php 9,990 while the 3GB+64GB variant is priced at Php 7,990. Regardless of the configuration you choose, the main highlight of the Realme 5 is its Quad-Camera Setup. Despite having lesser quality compared to its bigger brother, the Realme 5’s quad-camera allows you to capture the moment. It may not match a flagship phone’s camera quality, but you’ll be more happy that you got your desired picture using one of the realme5’s lenses than complaining about its picture quality. It’s for those who don’t mind not having the best quality photos but appreciate the flexibility and convenience to capture their desired image.
The Realme 5 proves to be a worthwhile contender in the sub 10k market. It merely offers an arsenal that no other smartphone in this price segment has, which is the quad-camera setup paired with the usual specs that you would find for its price range. The 48MP and Snapdragon 712 boost in going for the Pro variant of the Realme 5 depends on how much of a power user you are. But having the Realme 5 as is, especially the 4GB+128GB sweet spot, won’t certainly disappoint as your daily driver for social media, gaming, and photography thanks to its unique value proposition.
Grant is a Financial Management graduate from UST. His passion for gadgets and tech crossed him over in the industry where he could apply his knowledge as an enthusiast and in-depth analytic skills as a Finance Major. His passion allows him to earn at the same time help Gadget Pilipinas' readers in making smart, value-based decisions and purchases with his reviews and guides.