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Samsung Galaxy Note FE (Fan Edition) Review

Samsung Galaxy Note Fan Edition

Posted: , by Maxwell R.

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Camera

An outstanding sensor with processing that works harder than it needs to

Samsung Galaxy Note FE (Fan Edition) Review

We are reunited with the same 12-megapixel camera that we have seen on last year’s, and this year’s Samsung flagships. Despite having the new Samsung Experience UI, and Bixby on board, the Note FE’s camera interface is not updated with added features like Bixby Vision, or the ability to apply an animal mask to people’s faces.

That does not detract from the reality, however, that the images captured by the Note FE are wonderful, as we have come to expect from Samsung. Post-processing seems to favor over-sharpening, but just as often as not, you have to zoom in to really see it.

In darker conditions, the F1.7 aperture lends a hand in bringing plenty of ambient light into the picture, a feature we praised in our review last year. Like any smartphone camera, even with OIS, things can get a little fuzzy, but for the masses (or the few, really), the Note FE takes pictures that rival any flagship, past or present.

The front-facing 5-megapixel camera does not break any new ground, it has a wide field of view, so selfies are no problem. Wanting to spare the readership of images dominated by my ugly mug, I took it upon myself to find some people to take “us-ies” instead, with a family visiting California’s Capitol, and a couple CHP officers making the rounds. Plus, it gave an excuse to also try a selfie stick. Even with very bright sunlight conditions creating sharp changes between shadows and light, the camera performed well.

Video


The camera brings much of that same photographic competence to video recording as well. The Note FE records 4K video at 30 frames-per-second. You can also record 2K video at 30 fps. FHD video can be recorded at 30 or 60 fps. Certain features like image stabilization, video effects, and tracking auto-focus are not available when recording in the higher resolution settings.

Multimedia

Ideal for consuming video content, speaker is weak sauce

Samsung Galaxy Note FE (Fan Edition) Review

The beautiful 5.7-inch AMOLED display makes the Note FE ideal when it comes to taking in video content. With support for HDR10, you can harness more enriching goodies as providers like Netflix expand their offerings.

The single bottom-mounted speaker is barely adequate, and in order to hear anything, you really need to hammer the volume rocker. The sounds are clear, and there is nothing in the way of distortion, but among the current crop of available devices, the Note FE’s speaker does not shine. On the flip side of that, audio through the 3.5mm headphone jack works just fine.

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PhoneArena rating:
8.8Excellent
Display5.7 inches, 1440 x 2560 pixels (518 ppi) Super AMOLED
Camera12 megapixels
Hardware
Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, Quad-core, 2342 MHz, Kryo processor
4 GB RAM
Size6.04 x 2.91 x 0.31 inches
(153.5 x 73.9 x 7.9 mm)
5.89 oz  (167 g)

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