Poco M5S Review
The affordable POCO M5s smartphone is the result of a significant transformation, but that doesn't mean it's not worth looking into. The device offers decent performance with a good display and an overall design that feels good in the hand. However, you may find details that you may not like.
POCO is becoming more and more ambitious brand in the attack on many market segments. Of course, I mean relatively inexpensive models. My POCO M5s review shows what a budget smartphone should look like. Here, you cannot miss the fact that the manufacturer had to limit himself to modern technologies to minimize costs.
Unpacking and kit
At first glance, the box of the POCO M5s is the same as that of other smartphones from the company, although the content has changed. We get:
- Silicone case;
- USB-A to USB-C cable;
- Screen protector;
- SIM tray key documentation.
Alas, there is no power supply, so the savings are already visible at this stage.
Design and build quality
The design of POCO M5s looks familiar, it applies to both more expensive models and cheaper ones. This is especially noticeable on the back, which is well worked out. The matte finish goes well with the camera module. If we add to this reasonable dimensions and rounded edges, we find that the smartphone fits comfortably in the hand. While premium materials are out of the question, in this case, no, the plastic appears to be cheap.
POCO M5s design
From the front, we can see that we are dealing with an inexpensive smartphone due to the significantly larger bottom bezel. However, the rest are quite in line with modern trends, like a small cutout for a selfie camera. The last element on the front is the speaker, hidden above the display. This gives the impression of enlarging the entire set, which is split. The main matrix is placed in the silver shell. The second large lens is located below, and is wide-angle, and the other two sensors are almost invisible.
The slightly rounded edges of the M5s are a bit slippery, but that doesn't interfere with everyday use, as most of the friction is still on the back. On the sides of the monitored smartphone are: Top – speaker grille, infrared port, additional microphone. Bottom – speaker grille, USB-C, main microphone, 3.5 mm headphone jack. On the left is a tray for SIM and microSD cards. Right — physical keys with a lock button and a built-in fingerprint scanner. SIM Tray We get almost everything a smartphone needs for every day.
Starting with forgotten additions like a headphone jack or an infrared port, a full-sized tray for all cards and a good fingerprint scanner, ending with stereo speakers. The latter are not impressive in quality because the lower sound source dominates the upper one. Nevertheless, the sound is good, if you remember about the price class of the gadget in question. The maximum intensity is also in order, and the minds predominate among the frequencies.
For several generations, there has been a kind of struggle to improve the displays in cheap smartphones. Characteristics:
- AMOLED. Some go in the direction of increasing the frequency, others in the direction of AMOLED matrices. Of course, the ideal would be to combine both, but it will be costly. In the case of POCO M5s, we are talking about the best panel quality, since the matrix used here offers eye-pleasing colors and high brightness.
- Customize. On the other hand, the software allows you to customize individual colors in a wide range.
- 60 Hz. However, in an era of high frequencies, 60 Hz images do not make the best impression. Luckily, putting other high-frequency display devices aside for a few days is enough to stop this issue from bothering you.
The POCO M5s camera app is as feature rich as the MIUI skin. Cameras:
- AI. We're getting a lot of customization options and add-ons. This is a very handy program which has ergonomic solutions at every stage. You can only find fault with various optimizations because there are settings that destroy the image. You should also be careful with AI.
- Main camera. POCO M5s main camera is quite usable, the rest is just there.
- Depth sensor. You can immediately refuse two 2-megapixel matrices because they are useless. The depth sensor does not affect the quality of the portrait mode in any way. On the other hand, the macro lens is not even activated, when we want to take close-up photos, the application selects the wide angle.
- Sony wide-angle lens. Moving on to Sony's wide-angle lens, I must say that this is also a rather old sensor that only works well during the day. Under such conditions, you can see the difference in the changed colors in relation to the main camera. At night, the matrix practically goes blind, and even the correct mode does not help much, there is a lot of noise, there are few details.
- OmniVision. I am glad that the main sensor from OmniVision is not bad here. We shouldn't expect too much from the camera, but it's good enough for photography. During the day, the quality will be slightly above average, but there are problems with the correct reproduction of colors and contrast.
- OIS. The detail is correct, but at night you have to save yourself with a special mode, where even without OIS the effects are in order. Although in this case, the level of detail will drop noticeably.
POCO M5s allows you to record video in the following resolutions:
- 720p at 30 FPS;
- 1080p at 30 and 60 FPS;
- 4K @ 30 FPS;
- POCO M5s night shot.
- Night shooting: There is no stabilization at the highest resolution. We will use the wide-angle lens only with the Full-HD mode at 30 fps. But, only when we choose a wide angle, before pressing the red button. Electronic image stabilization works well, although every so often you can see jumps.
On board POCO M5s we get MIUI 13, a functional shell from Xiaomi, on top of Android 12. POCO M5s operating system:
- MIUI flexible. The system is extensive and customizable in many ranges, with many useful add-ons and options for personalization.
- Interface. About the M5s interface, I have only a few reservations. First, we get a lot of partner software, which is not necessarily useful. Secondly, the system also has many ads. I will note that we can disable most of the programs without too much trouble.
- MediaTek Helio G95. In terms of performance, the POCO M5s features a MediaTek Helio G95 processor.
POCO M5s Performance
Although the chipset is good for the budget segment, it is already outdated. This is expressed in the fact that the smartphone sometimes needs more time to think before performing certain actions. However, loading times are longer here than on more expensive counterparts with often stretched animations. If you have not used faster smartphones, you may not feel it. In everyday use, the nuances are also almost imperceptible.
POCO M5s autonomy
In the context of POCO's M5s, there's a lot to be said for the battery, just not that small. Autonomy:
- In practice, I had no problems with autonomy, I charged my smartphone every 2 days – there are no compromises.
- We get the following time on the display:
- 4 hours at maximum performance;
- 10 hours of normal use (Chrome, social networks, YouTube).
POCO M5s proves that the good times for cheap smartphones are almost over. Unfortunately, the deteriorating economic situation in the world leads to a rise in the cost of everything, as well as a decrease in opportunities for a technological revolution. Not only POCO, but also Xiaomi, Realme and other popular companies have to deal with this. I liked the display, even though it only offers a basic display refresh rate. Savings are felt on the processor, with no excess computing power, but it is quite enough. It's the same with the cameras we've already seen on past generations of smartphones.