Samsung Galaxy Note5 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 4
After a year of being on top of the Samsung food chain, the Galaxy Note 4 finally surrendered the throne and got succeeded by the newest S Pen-boasting phablet in the high-end Note lineup. Without the shadow of a doubt, the Note5 can be easily crowned as the most advanced and feature-packed smartphone Samsung has released to date, and from the looks of it, it will most probably retain that role for some time.
However, unlike previous battles between the old and new generation of Samsung's products, the Galaxy Note 4 is not ready to part with the top spot that easily. Despite the Note5 is the newer and more advanced device, the older Note still has a few key features that might stop some users from upgrading or jumping on the Note 5 train.
Is this truly the case? Is the Galaxy Note5 much better than the Note 4 and is it worth upgrading to the newest super phablet in town? Let's find out!
It's hard to take eyes off the exquisitely-designed Note5, which overshadows the Note 4 by a fair margin
Tailored in accordance with Samsung's new design trend that was introduced along with the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge earlier this year, the Galaxy Note5 is a very good-looking “sandwich” of glass and metal, intertwining together to create a nice and premium design. It won't be an overstatement to say that the Galaxy Note5 is easily one of the better-looking handsets we've seen of late - Samsung really did much better with the design aspect this time around.
On the other hand, we have the Note 4, a device that was also lauded for its departure from Samsung's “plastic fantastic” design language short of a year ago. It was one of the first Samsungs to employ an aluminum frame with subtly chamfered edges, although still complemented by a plastic back cover. While it is not as head-turning as the Note5, the Note 4 certainly has a charisma of its own.
Even from a distance, it will be downright easy to distinguish that these two are made by Samsung. The fronts of both parties employ the time-tested and classic design language of the company, characterizing themselves with a proudly-exhibited hardware home button and pretty decent screen-to-body size ratio (an aspect in which the Note5 wins yet another solid victory). Alas, the Note5's glass back is a fingerprint magnet, which is not something to like, but that's the cost of using such a nice and shiny material.
Moving on to the side frames, one of the things that are first noticed are the Note5's separated volume buttons, whereas the Note4 employs a single-piece volume rocker. Another noteworthy difference is the placement of the 3.5mm audio jack – top of the phone for the Note 4 and bottom positioning for the Note5.
Size-wise, the Note5 is noticeably thinner and more elegant than its predecessor. But it's not only thinner, it's also a smidgen shorter and not as wide, making it distinguishably svelter. While both feel well in the hand, it's more comfortable to handle the Note5.
While it can't boast looks as exquisite as those of the Note5, the Note 4 has other aces up the sleeve – it might be a bit larger and heavier, but it has a removable rear cover and battery, which are two of the several features the Note5 doesn't employ. Still, both phablets proudly come with S Pen styluses and fingerprint readers embedded in their home buttons (touch-based for the Note5 and swipe one for the older device); we also have a bunch of biometric sensors at the back of both devices, but we'll talk about these later on.
We have mostly similar Super AMOLED displays on both, but the Note5 has the upper hand in terms of overall quality
Samsung did not change the core specs of the display on the Note5 much: the Note 4 boasts, it comes with a 5.7-inch Super AMOLED screen which has a resolution of 1440 x 2560 pixels, while its successor is equipped with slightly smaller, 5.67-inch display, which has the same resolution. While both are pretty sharp, the Note5 has the upper hand on paper – with an estimated pixel density of 518ppi, the new phablet has a screen that is just a smidgen sharper than the Note 4's 515ppi one. A most negligible difference, that is.
From the looks of it, the Note5 has an almost identical display panel as the Note 4, just slightly tweaked, but mostly similar in terms of exhibited qualities. This is not a bad thing – the Note 4 came with one of the more accurate AMOLED displays we've seen, making it appear quite true-to-life if viewed in its “Basic” mode.
While maximum & minimum brightness and color temperature remain mostly unchanged, Samsung has got down to fixing the gamma of the display. While the Note 4 exhibited lower gamma levels at higher grayscale readings, which means that the brighter areas of the image appeared brighter than they should have been (we measured gamma levels under 1.8 at the lowest reading), the Note5 has fixed this issue to some extent – the gamma levels hardly ever dropped below 2 and never climbed above the ideal reading of 2.2.
Additionally, the improved gamma representation results in a much lower Delta E grayscale value — with the ideal measurement being 0, the display of the new S Pen warrior scores 1.94; as we mentioned above, this means that the various shades and hues don't deviate from the perfect readings on the grayscale. Same can be said about its Delta E rgbcmy measurement of 1.32, which means that the display is extremely color accurate. As a comparison, the Note 4 has a Delta E rgbcmy of 1.56 – still great, but not as good as the new star on the catwalk.
Display measurements and quality
|Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better||Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better||Contrast Higher is better||Color temperature (Kelvins)||Gamma||Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better||Delta E grayscale Lower is better|
|Samsung Galaxy Note 5||470
|Samsung Galaxy Note 4||468
The numbers below represent the amount of deviation in the respective property, observed when a display is viewed from a 45-degree angle as opposed to direct viewing.
|Maximum brightness Lower is better||Minimum brightness Lower is better||Contrast Lower is better||Color temperature Lower is better||Gamma Lower is better||Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better||Delta E grayscale Lower is better|
|Samsung Galaxy Note 5||60.4%
|Samsung Galaxy Note 4||68.8%
The CIE 1931 xy color gamut chart represents the set (area) of colors that a display can reproduce, with the sRGB colorspace (the highlighted triangle) serving as reference. The chart also provides a visual representation of a display's color accuracy. The small squares across the boundaries of the triangle are the reference points for the various colors, while the small dots are the actual measurements. Ideally, each dot should be positioned on top of its respective square. The 'x: CIE31' and 'y: CIE31' values in the table below the chart indicate the position of each measurement on the chart. 'Y' shows the luminance (in nits) of each measured color, while 'Target Y' is the desired luminance level for that color. Finally, 'ΔE 2000' is the Delta E value of the measured color. Delta E values of below 2 are ideal.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
The Color accuracy chart gives an idea of how close a display's measured colors are to their referential values. The first line holds the measured (actual) colors, while the second line holds the reference (target) colors. The closer the actual colors are to the target ones, the better.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
The Grayscale accuracy chart shows whether a display has a correct white balance (balance between red, green and blue) across different levels of grey (from dark to bright). The closer the Actual colors are to the Target ones, the better.
This measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.
1. zeeBomb (Posts: 2098; Member since: 14 Aug 2014)
The battle betwen perfect phones... #SamsungKorea
6. SamsungPhanboy (banned) (Posts: 765; Member since: 31 Mar 2015)
You must work for Samsung, because neither phone is even near perfect.
15. nepalisherpa (Posts: 211; Member since: 17 Jul 2015)
As a Note 4 user, the phone is nowhere near perfect! Then again, no phone is!
20. TSMan2 (banned) (Posts: 363; Member since: 20 Aug 2015)
OK , let's say- best two phones.
22. nepalisherpa (Posts: 211; Member since: 17 Jul 2015)
"Best" is determined by what users want. If you want a pure Android experience and couldn't care less about S-pen functionalities then these are not the best phones.
30. TSMan2 (banned) (Posts: 363; Member since: 20 Aug 2015)
Only few freaks could prefer the boring "pure Android experience"
We've seen how "good" sells GoogleEdition of the Samsung's flagships. Right? :)
32. nepalisherpa (Posts: 211; Member since: 17 Jul 2015)
We are not talking about sales here. We are talking about what users prefer and their preference defines what's best for them.
45. downphoenix (Posts: 3165; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)
sell those for subsidy or installmetns and we'll see.
70. coldspring22 (Posts: 314; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)
Sad to say, but both Note 4 and 5 is undeniably worse than Note 2 in hand writing input. With Note 2, you can scribble multiple lines as fast as you can with S-pen and Note will recognize it. Try that with Note 4 or 5 and you get garbage.
3. shy2papa (Posts: 309; Member since: 23 Jan 2010)
The note 5 is really good but I rather buy the note 4 price wise
19. TSMan2 (banned) (Posts: 363; Member since: 20 Aug 2015)
For me note 4 is better even if it's the same price. Because of the nice leather back and the functions behind it,
But I agree that except of the lack of swappable battery, SD, and IR , Note 5 is better in everything else - even the size.
We should not forget , though , that this Note 5 is the US version of Note. Meant to hunt for the apple's fan-base inside the nest Apple: US. This was what the apple's propaganda and all the tech media were whining about many year EVERY SINGLE DAY so far: "premium" tin-can-glass "design", and brainwashed the americans. Right?
43. rtimi26 (Posts: 42; Member since: 16 Mar 2009)
If you want the Note 5 with a leather back, it can be done by getting this skin.https://dbrand.com/shop/galaxy-note-5
4. Loveneesh (Posts: 179; Member since: 14 Jul 2015)
Note 4 is much better deal than note 5 due to:-
Original design vs fully copied design.
Sd card support (i use 128gb card).
Note 5 S pen may damage your phone.
16. TSMan2 (banned) (Posts: 363; Member since: 20 Aug 2015)
1)"Fully copied design"??? What are you talking about????
2)"Note 5 S pen may damage your phone." ???? Do you still believe those apple-shills from Android Police that is so easy? Why didn't they show the video how they managed to damage it??? LOL
57. ibend (Posts: 4639; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)
1) copy S6 design (even first generation note also copy design from S-line, but thats good actually :-/ )
2) step one, prepare sledge hammer
step two, insert s-pen backward and hammer it
23. TerryTerius (Posts: 1789; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)
The S Pen on the note 5 won't damage your phone. But being an idiot will.
40. MrElectrifyer (Posts: 3013; Member since: 21 Oct 2014)
So, making a slight mistake of inserting the pen in the wrong way when in the dark is idiotic? Gimme a break. This is a flawed design on Samsung's part, Pengate, just like Bendgate was a flaw on Apple's part.
53. MrElectrifyer (Posts: 3013; Member since: 21 Oct 2014)
Yes, a flaw you shortsighted Numbskull. Why should a slight mistake of inserting the pen the wrong way permanently damage a so-claimed "flagship" device? Older generations of the device didn't have this flaw. But go for it, bend over and accept it as "normal" from Samsung.
58. ibend (Posts: 4639; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)
- normally user hold pen in exact specific way (may differ between person), and so they'll never put it backward since it became habit..
do you ever accidentally use helmet backward? or toothbrush? haircomb? backpack? etc..
- no matter how dark, your screen can help you
- even if you accidentally put it wrong way, you'll notice it since u feel something wrong about it, since its part of habit (of course normal people wont shove S pen that hard until it broke some mechanism inside)
lets see how many people will suffer from this PenGate
62. MrElectrifyer (Posts: 3013; Member since: 21 Oct 2014)
That's a lot of inapt analogies and dumb assumptions in 1 post. Regardless, I've picked up my Surface Pen multiple times in the middle, thinking it was up right. It's a simple and prone-to-occur (due to a part of the upper part feeling like the lower part) mistake, especially when not focusing on the pen. It's an easy fix of just flipping it like any other pen. Not the case with this Note according to reports.
We'll see how many headlines this issue makes. Even Samsung is aware of the problem (they stated it in the Manual), yet die-hard fans seem to still be in denial.
61. k4ever (Posts: 182; Member since: 08 Oct 2014)
I've owned Notes for the past 3 years. I have never inserted my S-pen in backwards. It's not natural nor easy to do by mistake. You are full of crap.
59. jeroome86 (Posts: 1135; Member since: 12 Apr 2012)
The whole pen-gate thing is blown out of proportion. Just put your pen in the right way and don't let small children play with your phone.
I might wait awhile before getting N5. Still really like my N3. Does what I ask of it.
5. Supraman21 (Posts: 323; Member since: 09 Jun 2010)
I had the S6 for a few months and just a couple of days with the Note 5. These phones are basically identical but for some reason I feel the Note is better. I mean yea the battery is bigger (I get about 45 min more screen on time compared to the S6..still waiting for a phone to consistently give me a minimum of 4 hours screen on time), the screen is bigger, and it comes with a stylus, but it's something else that I can't explain. It just feels more refined and fresh in every way.
9. Neros (Posts: 1016; Member since: 19 Dec 2014)
You had a standard s6 or the edge? 45min less from note 5 is pretty darn good. Edge has 50 mAh bigger battey, so I'm just curious.
38. Ruturaj (Posts: 1341; Member since: 16 Oct 2014)
You are not getting 4 hours of SOT from note5?????
8. DeusExCellula (Posts: 1112; Member since: 05 Oct 2014)
Note 5 UI designed by kids for kids.. round icons look like garbage Note 4 all the way
36. Pattyface (Posts: 1612; Member since: 20 Aug 2014)
There are these things that Sammy allows you to do called tw themes that change everything based on your taste. Your argument is invalid
10. Neros (Posts: 1016; Member since: 19 Dec 2014)
Last weekend I had both note 4 and the s6 edge in my hands next to each other. Both were on max brightness and I couldn't tell the difference. S6's screen is better on paper, but I didn't see much difference tbh. N4 is still hell of a phone. Probably beats the n5 because of the money-to-quality ratio.
11. BattleBrat (Posts: 1458; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
Hmm, I'm leaning away from the Note 5, normally I would trade my Note 4 and and use jump to get the note 5. I would do it mostly for the VR headset but now I hear they're making a separate phone for that. But when it comes down to it for me the Note 4 is superior as a photographer's assistant device. While the stylus is the star of the show, the infrared port allowed me to set off my DSLR without a remote shutter cable and the SD card allowed for greater storage of photos. The note 5 gave up too much for me, I don't think I'll be getting one.
12. thegeneral7010 (Posts: 401; Member since: 10 Dec 2014)
Note 4 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> note 5 rven if note 5 was better than note 4 i wouldnt go to it or any samsung crap anymore after how they threated note 4 owners its my last samsung device.
13. parnav (Posts: 6; Member since: 29 Aug 2012)
whatever it is....... Note 4 still ROCKS!!!!!
14. thegeneral7010 (Posts: 401; Member since: 10 Dec 2014)
Well PA in terms of display displaymate (which is more trusted when it comes to display) has another opinion about note 5 display that its max manual brightness is 556 it can reach to 860 in auto mode iwish if u re check note 5 display again PA, when it comes to battery life wat i saw is that ure the only site that confirmed that note 5 has a better battery life than note 4 every review i saw (gsmarena for example) said that its slightly lower than note 4 while others said it equal but wat usm absolutly sure about is that it cant have abetter battery life than note 4 lets take amoment with that s6 battery was 200mah lower than s5 battery and it didnt manage to get an equal battery life to s5 ,on the other hand note 5 which have the same efficient display and processor that s6 has compared to note 4 which is far efficient than s5 and we have the same battery difference here 200mah and it gets abetter battery life ????thus doesnt make a sense.
17. PorkyBurger (Posts: 585; Member since: 18 May 2013)
Even though, I do like the looks of the Note5 more than Note4 (rear looks kind of ugly, imo), Note4 is still a overall better device to me. Would pick it over Note5 any day.
18. JayBEE (Posts: 113; Member since: 03 Apr 2014)
Note 4 > Note 5
Samsung removed too much from the Note 5 which Note 1 through Note 4 owners came to depend on. Hopefully, they will regain their senses with the next Note.
26. TerryTerius (Posts: 1789; Member since: 10 Apr 2014)
It's highly unlikely Samsung is going to completely change its mind for next note phone. Especially since they were likely more than aware of the reactions they would get once they made these decisions in the first place.
If other markets look anything like that report from Korea and the note 5 and edge plus are outselling their predecessors, Samsung definitely isn't going to backtrack.
LG (or Meizu) is likely going to be your only haven if what you seek is a removable back and Micro SD cards from a reputable company. And we shall see if even they (LG) keep those much longer given the sales performance of the g4.
There's also the fact that LG has a habit of imitating Samsung to keep in mind, which makes it even more likely they may ditch removable backs.
63. redmd (Posts: 1269; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)
True. LG has that habit to shadow Samsung. I wish they will keep the option to expand the memory.
68. almostdone (Posts: 231; Member since: 25 Sep 2012)
I would consider LG but why do their battery life sucks compared to the note series?
71. coldspring22 (Posts: 314; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)
Xiaomi is a reputable company and they have Redmi Note 2 (with removable battery and micro SD card slot) for only $160 USD. This phone scored betweenn 45K - 55K on antutu. This is a near flagship phone which cost only a fraction of what Note 5 or iphone 6 plus cost. There is also Lenovo K3 Note, which also perform on par with Redmi Note 2, with removable battery and micro SD slot. So lots of other options are available from "reputable" company like Xiaomi and Lenovo.
21. kkmkk (Posts: 481; Member since: 06 May 2013)
note 5 is great device it is just not enough to make me upgrade ( if it is really an upgrade since i will lost micro-sd and removable battery ) from my note 4
maybe next year note 6 will be better with non of the flows of the note 5
24. ShangTsung (Posts: 43; Member since: 23 Jul 2015)
If the note 5 had most of the features of previous notes I would have gotten one.
25. Topcat488 (Posts: 1396; Member since: 29 Sep 2012)
The Note5 has lost MORE than a quarter inch in width since the Original Galaxy Note... In my opinion the Note Series has lost its "Phablet" status. And has turned into a skinny giant phone.
I miss my FAT OG-Note. O.o
28. dmh0284 (Posts: 42; Member since: 04 Apr 2014)
The Note 5 feels much better in the hand than the Note 4. It's narrower and has curved back edges, making it feel much smaller when you hold it. It honestly doesn't feel like the phablet behemoth that the Note 4 feels like. I love those tiny side bezels, too. Makes the phone look much cleaner.
I agree that the cost over the Note 4 might not make it worth it, considering the lack of SD card slot and removable battery, but the Note 5 is definitely getting a bad rap. It's a great phone and one that I would enjoy using over a Note 4. Just don't think I can justify spending that kind of money on one. Oh, and Samsung really needs to implement at out-of-the-box screen knock-on feature.
29. Exige85 (Posts: 143; Member since: 12 Aug 2015)
Samsung did great with the Note 4 and 3. Almost perfect,strong,versatile,tons for options covers etc . The Note 5 is the more powerful and best looking (flashiest) but the least versatile. All comes down to what u want FLASH n Status vs Form,Function and versatility. You get what u want $$$$$
31. Loubielou (Posts: 508; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)
The Note 5 might look better than the Note 4,but there is no Worrying about running out of Battery Life with the Note 4 plus more memory on the phone with a 128gb Micro Sd Card inside my Note 4,what is the use of signing up for the Note 5 on contract with the Galaxy S7 just only a couple of months away,and if Samsung does not offer the micro sd card slot or the removable battery on the Galaxy S7,the Note 4 will by last Samsung phone,as i am really feed up with them Copying the iPhones
33. Andebad (Posts: 4; Member since: 25 Aug 2015)
My unrooted note 4 scores over 50k in antutu... Your review is showing 20% less
37. kkmkk (Posts: 481; Member since: 06 May 2013)
yes i have the exynos 7 (910c) and it has much higher performance than what they are showing to us which is misleading for the readers
39. jellmoo (Posts: 1595; Member since: 31 Oct 2011)
I get 48,000 + on mine. SD 805 version, rooted and running CM 12.1.
41k does seem oddly low...
51. MrEelSauce (Posts: 20; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)
My snap805 note 4 got 44 on kitkat. 48 on lillipop
52. MrEelSauce (Posts: 20; Member since: 17 Jul 2014)
Probably shouldn't walk through crowds and type next time.