Meizu M5 Note Review
Interface and functionality
Android Marshmallow is most welcome, but Flyme OS takes getting used to
First of all, it should be mentioned that the Meizu M5 Note does not come with Google's framework pre-installed right out of the box. Thankfully, you can download the vital Google Installer app straight from Meizu's Hot Apps store, which is a 2-minute business. No biggie.
The M5 Note we reviewed came with the company's own Flyme OS 5.2, which is based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow yet draws inspiration from Apple's iOS. Users familiar with Chinese smartphone firmwares will probably feel right at home, but for the uninitiated user, getting personal with Flyme OS will likely by an exotic experience. It might look intuitive, but that is deceitful – certain essential features might not work as you'd expect. A prime example is trying to set your ringtone volume with the rocker – in order to do that, you have to go to a separate menu in Settings, which is totally not intuitive. Additionally, Flyme OS is far from perfect and has certain aggravating quirks that can ruin your overall experience. In particular, a great bunch of the stock apps (think Messages, Phone, Gallery, etc) lack landscape mode and are locked in portrait orientation. Thankfully, this doesn't apply to the camera app which rotates in accordance to the phone's orientation.
Couple that with the out-of-place design regularities that mar the interface and you are left with the feeling that Flyme OS is in some kind of a beta stage.
Don't think we entirely dislike Flyme OS, though – it has its upsides. We loved the multi-window feature as well as the system-wide search function that pays some very serious homage to iOS' Spolight Search, but is a neat addition nonetheless. Meizu has also thrown in a trendy blue-light filter that employs a pleasant red hue which aims to relax your eyes and help you sleep better.
Processor and memory
Don't push it too hard or you will end up displeased
If you were to dissect the Meizu M5 Note, you'd find a mid-range octa-core MediaTek Helio P10 chipset clocked at up to 1.8GHz as well as 3GB of RAM. Enough technicalities, we know these mean nothing when viewed out of context.
Performance is mostly okay for basic everyday tasks, like texting, streaming music, browsing the web, and killing time with less complex games. Just as we mentioned before, Meizu's interface is well-optimized and will seldom exhibit any hiccups or lag, though you should be prepared to encounter such issues from time to time. It's worth noting that you can switch between three different performance modes at will, namely Saving, Balance, and Performance, which are pretty self-explanatory.
Fire up a fast-paced 3D game and you're in for some really bad time, even with Performance mode enabled. Apart from the lowly frame rate, you will also be treated to frame drops here and there, not to mention that the phone becomes noticeably warm even after a brief gaming session. You'll experience the same after heavy usage, too.
With merely 16GB of storage in the basic version, you'd likely want to throw in a microSD card in the hybrid dual-SIM slot as soon as possible or otherwise you might run out of space rather quickly – you'll find less than 4 gigs of native storage available on the unit I reviewed after merely a week of light usage.
AnTuTu Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 46722
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 47205
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 75698
Honor 5X 35183
Vellamo Metal Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 1343.33
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 1460
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 2574
Honor 5X 1108
Vellamo Browser Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 2966.33
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 2856
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 4217
Honor 5X 2327
JetStream Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 26.129
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 21.993
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 49.425
GFXBench T-Rex HD on-screen Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 14
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 18
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 32
Honor 5X 15
GFXBench Manhattan 3.1 on-screen Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 3.6
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 4.5
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 9.4
Honor 5X 6
Basemark OS II Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 289.33
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 1001
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 1407
The M5 Note is equipped with a hybrid dual-SIM card slot – one of the slots accepts microSD expansion cards for a few extra gigs of storage.
The phone is LTE-enabled, but have in mind that it only supports FDD-LTE bands 1, 3, 5, 6, 20, as well as TDD-LTE bands 38 and 40. This means that you can only use the phone on AT&T's 4G network in the States; using it with any other carrier will only let you reach 3G data speeds. LTE with most European and all Chinese carriers is a given, though.
The Meizu M5 Note comes with Bluetooth 4, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, as well as dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 a, b, g, n, a pleasant surprise for such an affordable phone. No sign of NFC, so don't keep your hopes up for Android Pay support.
Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 11, 2016
posted on Jan 20, 2017, 5:36 AM 4
Posts: 234; Member since: Mar 11, 2014
posted on Jan 20, 2017, 5:46 AM 6
Posts: 5; Member since: Jan 20, 2017
posted on Jan 20, 2017, 9:28 AM 1
Posts: 200; Member since: Jul 21, 2015
posted on Jan 20, 2017, 4:24 PM 2
Posts: 216; Member since: Oct 04, 2014
posted on Jan 20, 2017, 8:08 PM 0
Posts: 407; Member since: Apr 12, 2015
posted on Jan 22, 2017, 6:44 AM 0
Posts: 191; Member since: Nov 22, 2011
posted on Jan 23, 2017, 8:15 PM 1
PhoneArena Comments Rules
A discussion is a place, where people can voice their opinion, no matter if it is positive, neutral or negative. However, when posting, one must stay true to the topic, and not just share some random thoughts, which are not directly related to the matter.
Things that are NOT allowed:
- Off-topic talk - you must stick to the subject of discussion
- Trolling - see a description
- Flame wars
- Offensive, hate speech - if you want to say something, say it politely
- Spam/Advertisements - these posts are deleted
- Multiple accounts - one person can have only one account
- Impersonations and offensive nicknames - these accounts get banned
Moderation is done by humans. We try to be as objective as possible and moderate with zero bias. If you think a post should be moderated - please, report it.
Have a question about the rules or why you have been moderated/limited/banned? Please, contact us.
Send a warning to post author
Send a warning to Selected user.
The user has 0 warnings currently.
Next warning will result in ban!
Ban user and delete all posts
Message to PhoneArena moderator (optional):
- Display 5.5" 1080 x 1920 pixels
- Camera 13 MP / 5 MP front
- Processor MediaTek Helio P10, Octa-core, 1800 MHz
- Storage 64 GB + microSDXC
- Battery 4000 mAh