Camera

Just ‘okay’. Slow to focus and photos are not too rich in terms of detail.


The J5 (2017) comes with a 13-megapixel, 27mm f/1.7 camera on the back, and a 13MP, 28mm f/1.9 shooter up front.

The camera app supports the neat double-click the home key shortcut to launch, and it is the familiar clean Samsung affair. You swipe up and down to switch between the front and rear cameras, and swipe left to see effects and right for modes. You have an auto mode, pro mode (with limited controls including White Balance, ISO, Exposure and Metering), Panorama, Continuous shot, HDR, Night, Sports and Sound and Shot. To start recording video, simply tap on the red button right next photo shutter key.

Image Quality


So how do images turn out?

First, what strikes me most about using this camera is that it is much slower than on other phones. The camera app takes longer to start and focusing is noticeably slower than on pricier phones. This means you will have more blurry images and it’s harder to capture those impromptu moments.

Then, there is an even bigger problem: in images with both dark and bright areas, there's some overexposure and highlights tend to burn (that is, to turn out white). This can be remedied by using HDR mode, but it won't turn itself on automatically, and its use adds a longer delay between shots. Image quality itself is about average.

Here, you truly get what you pay for, which is not a lot: an image that is not particularly rich in detail or dynamics. There is also a slight oversharpening going on, but the big issues are the overexposure, burning of highlight, lack of proper detail and hard-to-nail focus.

The front camera, on the other hand, is actually better than average. Give it enough light and it will capture very detailed pictures, but it does fairly well in moderate light as well.



Taking a pic Lower is better Taking an HDR pic (sec) Lower is better CamSpeed score Higher is better CamSpeed score with flash Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017) 1.6
2.5
336
328
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 3.1
No data
482
266
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) 1.8
2.9
No data
No data
Motorola Moto G5 Plus 1.8
2.6
1118
669

Video quality


The new J5 can shoot video at up to 1080p Full HD resolution, and the quality is… not great. The camera supports continuous auto-focusing, but it is often so slow that it will miss the moment when it has to switch the focus. And it is completely inept to shoot outdoors when you have a little bit of sun: everything turns out wildly overexposed. You can try to manually turn down exposure, but then you lose dynamics. There seems to be some slight form of video stabilization, which prevents the footage from looking too shakey, but that does little to help.



Sound quality


There is a single loudspeaker located right above the lock key on the right handside. It delivers plenty of punch, but sounds too tinny and lacking definition. You can’t expect too much from a phone, and we are happy we get the extra loudness, something important when you are trying to show friends a funny video on the web.

There is an audio jack on the bottom as well, which is also nice.

Headphones output power (Volts) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017) 0.53
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 0.49
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) 0.53
Motorola Moto G5 Plus 1.015
Loudspeaker loudness (dB) Higher is better
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2017) 76
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 77
Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) 75
Motorola Moto G5 Plus 77.6


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22 Comments

22. madara82

Posts: 36; Member since: Jul 01, 2017

what i dont like with this phone is lacks any form of special water protection or other super-powers, in case you were wondering. maybe atleast water resistant will be better.

21. Stappy3

Posts: 108; Member since: Dec 09, 2015

How is an HD display for a pretty low priced budget phone sad?

20. cheetah2k

Posts: 2341; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

Why bother scoring anymore itrollarena. I mean your scoring consistency is worse than the local weather man..

18. airoid

Posts: 135; Member since: Dec 13, 2016

I noticed that any phone that has better battery life than iPhone then PA doesn't put iPhone in comparison chart for you to compare hahahaa

12. WAusJackBauer

Posts: 456; Member since: Mar 22, 2015

The cons on this review are a joke.

13. g2a5b0e unregistered

They all sound like legit knocks to me. And as someone who used a J7 for a weeks after I lost my Note 5, I can vouch for the validity of them. I'll never use another Samsung that isn't a flagship. That's for sure.

14. You_Dont_Say

Posts: 431; Member since: Jan 26, 2015

Stuttery performance is no laughing matter.

6. Lumbergh

Posts: 463; Member since: Feb 14, 2016

"Stuttery performance" Sounds like Samsung. They gotta get these lag issues fixed.

1. Nexus4lifes

Posts: 303; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

A 5.2” AMOLED display with an HD resolution in 2017 is a bit sad. apple iphone se rated excellent by iphonearena has a less than 720p display...

2. Spyro

Posts: 334; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

I am perfectly fine with my 4" screen. At least my SE doesn't have a sh*tty camera and poor performance, let alone my camera can shoot in 4k.

3. Nexus4lifes

Posts: 303; Member since: Feb 13, 2014

HAHA se costs $449 j5 will be around 199...

5. kiko007

Posts: 7525; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

The SE is around 300 bucks lol. What country do you live in?

17. sgodsell

Posts: 7677; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

Apple's own website in the US lists the iPhone SE for $399. In Canada it's $580 for that tiny fart of an iPhone SE. Although many places are offering BOGO deals, buy an iPhone 6s or 7 and get a free iPhone SE. But nowadays we are seeing buy an iPhone 7 and get a free iPhone 7 as well. I guess Apple has to get there market share up any way they can. Please buy our recycled icrap.

7. Spyro

Posts: 334; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

Better to stick with quality than trash.

8. Lumbergh

Posts: 463; Member since: Feb 14, 2016

SE doesn't have "stuttery performance" lol.

4. maherk

Posts: 7101; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

You can't deny the fact that a 720 Amoled screen is less sharper than a 720 lcd screen, especially if there is at least 0.5" in size difference.

9. Spyro

Posts: 334; Member since: Mar 29, 2017

Even if I were a troll, I wouldn't defend trash.

10. Victor.H

Posts: 1117; Member since: May 27, 2011

Do you realize the difference between a PenTile display with a 5.2-inch size with HD resolution, and a full RGB display with a 4.7-inch resolution? If you did, you would know that the iPhone has a much sharper display.

15. xeroxchap

Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 11, 2016

Victor. H......hmmm.... again... stop being so pissy abt your real boss *Insert Fruit Here"..and act a bit professional.... dnt leave salty comments to ppl who provide traffic to this site...U have your opinion and u clearly mentioned it in your article...comments section is for the readers....otherwise disable comments and keep on praying to Apple !

16. g2a5b0e unregistered

It's quite ironic that you're the one who sounds salty here. It's not like he didn't say anything that isn't true.

19. xeroxchap

Posts: 68; Member since: Oct 11, 2016

yes...actually i was.... i am not getting paid by iphonearena to write an article...... Girl bye!

11. g2a5b0e unregistered

In all fairness, you're comparing a 4" screen to a 5.2" screen. The iphone screen clearly has a higher PPI. On top of that, it came out 1.5 years ago.
Galaxy J5 (2017)
  • Display 5.2 inches
    1280 x 720 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP (Single camera)
    13 MP front
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 7 Octa, 2GB RAM
  • Storage 16GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh
  • OS Android 9.0 Pie
    Samsung One UI

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