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Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review

Nokia 5800 XpressMusic

Posted: , posted by Ray S.

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Finally, we've reached the most interesting part. The 5800 is a music series phone which features a 3.2-inch widescreen display that’s lovely for watching clips and even movies. Are you ready to get into the multimedia capabilities of the new addition to the XpressMusic series, and find out whether it’d be a worthy competitor for the best phones in this aspect? Of course, but first we’ll unveil the secret of the sensor button below the camera for video conversations. By pressing it, a set of icons appears on the screen, providing quick access to the music player, gallery, online sharing services, video center and the internet browser. In our view this is a great addition which will help you to quickly get to some of the mostly used features today. Unfortunately, it can not be customized in any way.

We start the music player and a pretty familiar sight appears. The filtering options for your songs are well-known from previous XpressMusic models, for example the 5310 and the 5320. It’s up to you to decide how you’re going to sort the available songs; by artists, albums, playlists, genres, composers, Podcasts or all. The interface doesn’t differ a lot from the one of the N-series phones. It’s just been optimized in order to be more usable with a touch screen. There’s nothing flamboyant about it, it works fast and is user-friendly. There are some additional features as shuffle, repeat and Stereo widening. There is also an equalizer included, which features a few presets with the option to create new ones.

Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review
Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review
Music player - Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review
Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review
  

Music player

 

We played a few songs in order to check the loudspeakers out and have to admit that they sounded really, really good. The sound is very loud and its quality is better than the one of the Nokia N95 8GB. Good job by Nokia! We were a bit prejudiced about the headphones, because we thought that they won’t be able to isolate the environment sounds well enough. We were wrong. Again, the sound is very loud and high-quality and it definitely pleased us. The headset isn’t as good as the one of the Sony Ericsson W980, which is one of the best phones in this aspect, but is completely comparable to the one of the iPhone. The Nokia headset is equipped with a module with keys that allow you to control the various music functions. These keys aren’t very handy, but at least you won’t have to take the phone out of your pocket.

Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review
Nokia 5800 XpressMusic Review

So, we ended up quite pleased with the musical qualities of the 5800 and it’s now time to check whether the 3.2-inch widescreen display can be used for watching video clips and movies. We say movies, because according to the specifications, when watching video files with a resolution, equal to the one of the display, the phone should last at least 3.4 hours. We placed our test files on the memory card and… weren’t able to play them. This was really odd, since we’ve never experienced such problem with these files, even when trying to run them with other budget phones like the 5320 XpressMusic. We checked the supported formats in the manufacturer’s official page and found the solution: MPEG4-SP with 30 fps and VGA resolution, MPEG4-AVC (H.264 with 30 fps and QVGA resolution, WMV9 with 30 fps and QVGA resolution, MPEG4-SP with 30 fps and 640x360 pixels. We converted the videos to the required formats and resolutions and everything run flawlessly. There’s no lag but we’re a bit disappointed that H.264 clips run only in QVGA resolution (320x240). This format offers better image quality and it’s a pity that it can’t take advantage of the full resolution of the display, which is 640x360 pixels. With such a performance, the 5800 scores equally with the iPhone, but stays behind some other multimedia phones like the LG Renoir and the Samsung Pixon.

We also tried to run DivX and Xvid files, but since those files aren’t officially supported we installed Core Player and DivX Mobile Player (both programs are for S60 3rd Edition). The first one played only the sound, and the second one couldn’t be controlled with the touch screen. However, this issue may be fixed when future updates of S60 5th Edition are released, but until then, DivX and Xvid remain beyond 5800’s abilities.

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PhoneArena rating:
7Good
Display3.2 inches, 360 x 640 pixels (229 ppi) TFT
Camera3.2 megapixels
Hardware
Single core, 434 MHz, ARM11 processor
0.1 GB RAM
Size4.37 x 2.04 x 0.61 inches
(111 x 51.7 x 15.5 mm)
3.84 oz  (109 g)
Battery1320 mAh, 8.8 hours talk time

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