Call quality

For the most part, you will have no serious issues with the way the earpiece or the microphones of the M5 Note do their job. Call quality, albeit far from stellar, is perfectly acceptable on both ends of the line.

Battery life

Both battery life and recharging times are excellent!

Rest assured that the 4,000mAh juicer inside the M5 Note will get you going for at least a day and a half on a single charge, or even two if you are using it more lightly. Even under a heavier load, you can expect the phone to last you a full day.

The M5 Note lasted for 9 hours and 45 minutes in our custom battery test, which is a very good result, though nothing that will knock your socks off.

When it came to charging, the Meizu M5 Note surprised us in the most pleasing way – its battery went from 0% to 100% in 96 minutes, which is an excellent result for such a well-endowed device. This great result is courtesy of the fast-charging tech Meizu has utilized.

Battery life (hours) Higher is better
Meizu M5 Note 9h 45 min (Good)
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 7h 30 min (Average)
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 12h 36 min (Excellent)
Honor 5X 6h 54 min (Average)
Charging time (minutes) Lower is better
Meizu M5 Note 96
Motorola Moto G4 Plus 113
Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 153
Honor 5X 170

Conclusion and recommendations

Low price does not a good phone make

The ancient “You get what you pay for” mantra rings particularly true for the Meizu M5 Note. It's far from an excellent device as it has a surplus of caveats, but that's to be expected from such an affordably-priced offering. The 3GB RAM/16GB unit we reviewed costs around $130, while $218 will get you the top version with 4GB RAM and 64GB of storage. So far, it's only available in China and is yet to hit Meizu's online stores for the Western markets, where the 16 and 32GB versions will sell for 229 and 249 EUR, respectively; while a US release is out of the question.

We wouldn't advise importing that one — it's a good value for money, but we feel like this only applies to the Chinese market, which is where the M5 Note is originally intended for. Moreover, you will have to put up with lots of compromises, namely non-existent LTE support on most US carriers, as well as shabby aftermarket support and the exotic Flyme OS interface.

You'd be better off with a phone that's less of a hassle. A 5.5-inch Moto G4 Play is way pricier at $269, but will end up being a way better investment in the long run. Even the ~$150 Moto G4 Play and $200 Moto G4, despite being smaller and pricier, are also better alternatives to the Meizu M5 Note.

Honor's offerings, namely the older honor 5X and the brand new honor 6X might also interest you: both are available in the States, carry 5.5-inch screens, and are priced pretty reasonably, at $199 and $249 respectively.

However, if you're dead-set on getting a low-cost Chinese phone for some reason, you might want to look into similarly-priced alternatives like most of Xiaomi's entry-level offerings, namely the 5.0-inch Redmi 4, which is going for roughly $150, or the 5.5-inch Redmi Note 4, which has a $210 price tag.


  • Very well-built
  • Good value for money


  • Interface feels half-baked
  • Inaccurate display colors
  • Limited LTE support in the US

PhoneArena Rating:




1. xeroxchap

Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 11, 2016

Its a 130$ phone....Reviews are a joke on this site!

2. xeroxchap

Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 11, 2016

Also basing a review on just US based market is absurd... then y review it at all.. i dont get the point!

4. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

give it 5.5/10 and then recommending another phone with twice that price... nice logic :v pros&cons really short, and the whole article seems half-baked

3. deanylev

Posts: 234; Member since: Mar 11, 2014

What a f**king stupid review. You get all that for $130, yet it gets just over half of a perfect score because you don't like the interface, the display colours aren't great, and it's got limited LTE support in A MARKET IT WAS NEVER MADE FOR.

5. Todyo

Posts: 5; Member since: Jan 20, 2017

Nicely said deanylev! Its not made for US! The target of Meizu is China, Russia, Europe. Flyme OS is among the best interface for android out there. Meizu M back button is ages ahead of apple's home button. Stop making Meizu phone reviews! So inadequate!

6. zeppo

Posts: 200; Member since: Jul 21, 2015

every Meizu phone got an avg. score of 5 lol. They didn't bribe enough to iPhonearena

7. androidwindows

Posts: 216; Member since: Oct 04, 2014

I wish I could "like" this comment 100 times.

8. androidwindows

Posts: 216; Member since: Oct 04, 2014

It's a good phone. With its price tag, it deserves a 7.

9. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

yeah right... btw, this phone's big brother (Meizu M3 Max) get 7.6/10 on androidauthority which is more acceptable

10. Sidewinder

Posts: 515; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

"While its design is a bit mundane and fails to excite on any level".. You mean the iphones for the past 3 years right?

11. sleepypandaeyes

Posts: 403; Member since: Apr 12, 2015

I have always admired Meizu out of all the Chiense OEMs but am weary of issues such as lack of after sales care, potential spyware (BLU), quality control (my xiaomi note 2 was trash), new flagships refreshes every 6 months etc. Have noticed prices are gradually getting higher with each iteration (unless the phone is bought in/from china).

12. bvalde09

Posts: 191; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

I have test many Chinese phone coming from somebody who use the m3 note . The m5 note its an improvement over previous generation. Sure the UI takes time to get used to it but 5.5? Cmon the device should be at least an 8 in my standards.

13. salvo unregistered

Wow a really good review but have you seen the agm a2?
M5 Note
  • 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

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