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Honor 5C review: It’s impressively good for its price

The little guy with flagship aspirations



The honor 5C is a step below the honor 5X with a slightly lower price tag. There’s nothing fancy over at the front with a 5.2” Full HD screen that uses on-screen buttons for navigation. Viewing angles are good with moderate visibility under harsh sunlight. The overall size feels just right, and it can be held comfortably with a single hand.


Over at the back, it gets a nice brushed metal plate (non-removable) that gives a premium feel that’s cool to touch. The fingerprint scanner is placed at the back, allowing instant unlocking as you slide the phone from your pocket. Being a more affordable device, the sides are made of plastic but it does look good with its textured appearance.



For less than a thousand bucks, we won’t expect killer flagship performance but at least it should be good enough for the essentials like web browsing, watching videos and a couple of games. The honor 5C uses their own in-house developed Kirin 650 Octa-Core processor that boasts a 16nm fabrication process instead of the usual 28nm process that’s common with smartphones in this category. To have such processor in this price point is definitely a first and this should translate to better performance and power efficiency. For all your storage needs, it gets 16GB on-board which can be expanded via microSD with its dual Nano-SIM slot.

Surprisingly the honor 5C pulls its weight quite effortlessly. Browsing pages on chrome is smooth and switching between apps was a breeze despite having just 2GB of RAM. In fact, it feels more fluid than the honor 5X that tends to struggle due to its aggressive power management. Even with the battery profile running at the default Smart Settings, it still holds up pretty well.

If you’re into benchmarks, the honor 5C scored 53,409 on Antutu v6.1.4. Meanwhile on Geekbench 3, it scored 911 for Single Core and 3,898 for Multi-Core.

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For the price, the 13MP camera on the honor 5C is pretty impressive with sharp images and colour reproduction. We actually find it better than its direct rival, the Redmi Note 3. Focusing takes about a second but it’s acceptable for a phone on a budget. You can check out our photo gallery in the next page.

Launching the camera app is fast and you can even take a shot from sleep to snap in a second by double press the volume down key. There’s no shortage of features too as it gets object tracking, light painting and even Pro Manual settings for photo and video recording. The front 8MP camera isn’t much to shout about and it comes with your usual beautification add-ons that also works for video.



The honor 5C runs on a current Android 6.0 with their latest EMUI 4.1. Like before, it lacks an app drawer which doesn’t really bother me that much. For some, EMUI icons might look cartoonish but you can change the look by switching themes. You do get a couple of “flagship” features like scroll shot and the ability to record your entire screen into a video clip.

The fingerprint scanner is quick to unlock on a single tap and it gets you into the phone without any delaying transitions. Similar to its other models, you can swipe on the sensor to browse photos or to bring down your notifications panel.


The microphone and speaker grills are located at the bottom which plays pretty loud that won’t get muffled with the device lying down. With a 3,000mAh capacity battery, the honor 5C is quite frugal in power which gives us more than 19 hours of usage and about 6 hours of screen on time on a single charge. With average use, you probably could last a working day without charging in between.

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The honor 5C should be high on your list when considering a smartphone under RM1,000. Like its bigger brother, the honor 7, the 5.2″ size feels just right and it has the right balance of performance and build quality.

Its biggest rival would be the Redmi Note 3 (2GB RAM + 16GB storage) which offers a larger screen and battery capacity for RM50 less. However, if photography is a deciding factor, hands down we would lean towards the honor 5C.


The honor 5C is open for pre-orders on 20 June at 10:08AM. You can head over to or Lazada Malaysia. The silver and grey honor 5C are priced at RM799 while the gold colour is going for RM849.

Honor 5C: Rate and Win

Want to win a brand new smartphone? Just rate and tell us why you would recommend the honor 5C to be in the running to win one. This lucky draw contest ends on 1st July 2016.

UPDATE: Congratulations to MOHD HARIS BIN RAHMAT for winning the honor 5C! A big thank you to everyone for taking part in this contest and stay tuned for more on our Facebook page.

The "honor 5c RATE & WIN" Contest


Alexander Wong