We live in an era where one has to include themselves in almost every picture that they take. And the long prevailing trend is taking pride in clicking those pictures themselves. Be it going on a solo ride or hanging out with a bunch of homies, selfies and group selfies are now a customary activity that shows up towards the end of a gig and at times at periodic intervals during an event. Throw in the words smartphones and selfies, Vivo is one of the brand names that will spring up. And why not, our cities are painted all over the place with their blue boards and a Bollywood actor under the phone’s “moonlight” smiling away with his clicks.
Yes, Vivo V5s it is that we are talking about. Succeeding the V5, the V5s isn’t much of a change in terms of specifications. But we love to be surprised, don’t we? Having used the phone for a week now, we present to you the camera review – click click click!
Let’s start with the front facing camera (selfie smartphone duh!). 20-megapixels with an LED flash is what the set up is. Power up the camera app and you’re presented with a simple, typical iOS-ish UI. Tap on the selfie option and you will see a range of options at the bottom – Group Selfie that helps one take a wider selfie with a group, which is essentially a selfie–panorama. No more shunting yourself into a corner and struggling to fit the background or the group into the frame. Take the pride of being the center of attraction in the picture! This is easily our favorite feature.
Face Beauty is a narcissist’s favorite! For the ones who don’t mind turning themselves into barbies and kens, those shiny dolly faces. Vivo does a good job at this and hits that sweet spot on the boundary of making it over artificial.
Take Photo is the normal selfie and does the job of showing you things AS IS.
There is also the Video mode that can shoot up to 1080p.
How does this all work together? “Pretty Good Job” is what it all sums up into. The Group Selfies does a pretty good job at stitching. It takes a while to get used to and once you’ve mastered it, you would have to use it to know how easy it is to fall in love with it! The output is top notch in daylight but if you’re doing this in low light, take some additional care to ensure the hands are steady as they traverse the path. The normal selfies also come out very well capturing a good amount of detailing in them and the colors being true to life. So as long as you’re shooting in daylight, things are quite good but the dynamic range can use some improvements. As the lights go down, noise finds its way easily and if there is any slightest hint of light in the background, images will have some overexposed/blown out portions. This is again inconsistent at times but you can work your way around it figuring out the right angle. The moonlight/single LED flash comes in handy in low light and does a good job in showering soft light on the faces though the other portions of the image may lack details. Videos too come out pretty decent and the sound recording too is pretty good. All in all, you’d surely not be disappointed with the front camera and we feel this is easily one of the top 3 out there in its price range.
The primary camera consists of a 13-megapixel camera with single LED flash. It also comes with a Phase Detection Auto Focus which is evident in focusing speeds. The camera has a slight bump and at times can be pokey. It did pick and prick on some clothing thread while using it in the pockets along with a handkey – nitpicking but a word of caution!
The app has options for a range of filters which are pretty cool. There are options for manual mode, panorama, Ultra HD to shoot 52MP shots, slow motion, time-lapse, dedicated night shot and PPT mode. While the range of options is quite good, the output is decent and limited to daylight shots. And one has to have a very steady pair of hands to be able to get good shots regardless of the lighting conditions. On the brighter side, the white balance and focusing speeds are good. Like its front facing camera, the dynamic range can use some improvements. In the low light conditions, there is quite a bit of noise coming in and the images are rather flat / lack details. The HDR mode does a very good job at highlighting the details under the shadows. At best the rear camera is average and given its price range and selling point of a selfie camera it depends on what one picks the V5s for. The PPT mode is a handy feature that lets you click a set of picture and converts them into some kinda slide that can be readily used, gimmicky, but can be handy to some users.
Priced at around Rs 18,000, the Vivo V5s delivers what it is being sold for. But at that price, you will have to set the expectations right. Would you be merely satisfied with good selfless? Would you want the rear camera to match the performance of the front camera? Are you a power hungry user in addition to clicking away pictures? Is a subset of questions you’d have to answer yourself. OPPO too has some options and so does Gionee. But if it’s a wicked awesome selfie-taking (along with good after-sale support) is what you’re looking for, here is what we have to say – go pick one up and Shine On You Crazy Moon-Light!