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Honor 8 Pro UK Review: Amazing spec for less then £500

Written by  Apr 10, 2017

Even budget manufacturers are producing phablets these days, and now it's Honor with the Honor 8 Pro.

This is a 5.7" Quad HD screen with an impressive array of specifications and a gorgeous design and you get alot of bang for your buck at a comparatively low £475.

You can find the Honor 8 Pro at Amazon for £475, a tasty price given its specifications and competition. The smartphone is available in platinum gold, midnight black and navy blue colours, and comes with 64GB of internal storage as standard.

I was interested to see what the Honor 8 Pro could bring to the table and how it would compete with other Quad HD phablets such as the, Samsung Galaxy Note 5 (£505) and the impressive Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge (£440).

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Build quality

Honor decided to go with with a new design that merges the Huawei P10’s matte finish and Honor 8’s vibrant colour scheme. The smooth, rounded edges and its full-metal unibody design give the phone a premium quality feel. 

Measuring a meagre 6.97mm from front to back, the Honor 8 Pro is slim; it’s thinner than the iPhone 7 Plus, which is 7.3mm. 

The Honor 8 Pro has a fingerprint sensor around the back of the phone. Which makes the phone more natural to unlock and, with its blisteringly fast unlock speed, the Honor 8 Pro is comfortable to use with one hand.

Strangely, where the fingerprint reader doubles up as a customisable button on the Honor 8, it's missing on this model. You can still swipe your finger left, right, up and down to carry out various operations, but it was a handy option I liked.

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A 3.5mm headphone jack is located at the bottom, alongside a downward-firing speaker and its fast-charging USB Type-C connector. The phone’s volume buttons and power button are found on the right, and a dual nano-SIM compartment is on the left. If you prefer, a 128GB microSD card can be added, occupying the secondary SIM slot.

Display

The Honor 8 Pro has an impressive 1,440 x 2,560 pixels, the Honor 8 Pro kicks out a pixel density of 515ppi, resulting in sharp text and images.

The Honor 8 Pro's colours appear vibrant and rich. Its 1,305:1 contrast ratio and 0.35cd/m2 black levels are reasonable, too.

With a maximum brightness of 463cd/m2, you won’t have any problems viewing the screen in sunlight, either. 


Honor 8 Pro 5.7-Inch SIM-Free Smartphone - Blue £474.99 amazon uk

Software

The Honor 8 Pro comes with Android 7 Nougat and EMUI 5.1. EMUI has been tweaked to a high standard and works fluidly with the Honor 8 Pro. I’ve really adapted to Honor’s integration of EMUI on its smartphones, and 5.1 includes RAM and processor optimisations, which Honor claims help Android stay responsive over the long term.

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Performance

The Honor 8 Pro has plenty going on underneath, too. It has an octa-core Kirin 960 chip, comprising one quad 2.4GHz CPU and one quad 1.8GHz CPU, and the phone zooms through any tasks that are thrown at it. A huge 6GB of RAM is also helps it run smoothly without a murmour during heavy multitasking. Put into perspective, these specifications are more impressive than the £650 LG G6 on Amazon right now with a whopping £44% discount at £363.

The Honor 8 Pro's benchmark performance is impressive. It’s up there with the very best smartphones around and it blows its closest rivals away.

It really is a quick phone and ran trouble free on an intensive Android game; like Temple Run 2. With a consistent performance of over 30fps in benchmarks and games, the Honor 8 Pro is perfect for mobile gaming.

Its results in the GFXBench Manhattan 3 test back up this positive impression, with the Honor 8 Pro achieving an average onscreen frame rate of 33fps and an off-screen frame rate of 42fps.

The big disappointment is that the Honor 8 Pro has below-average battery life. For a phone with a 4,000mAh battery, I’d have expected more than the 11hrs 17mins achieved in the Expert Reviews video-rundown benchmark. By comparison, the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge achieved 18hrs 42mins in the same benchmark.

honor-8-pro-5

Camera

The Honor 8 Pro has the same 12-megapixel f/2.2 camera as the regular Honor 8. The rear camera comes with laser autofocus and dual-tone LED flash, while the front selfie shooter is an 8-megapixel f/2.4 camera.

There’s a healthy selection of camera modes to choose from: photo, pro photo, video, pro video, monochrome, HDR, 3D creator, night shot, panorama, light painting, time-lapse, slow-mo, watermark, audio note and document scan.

Pro photo mode allows you to adjust the metering, ISO, shutter speed, EV, focus and white balance. Pro video gives you the option to adjust the metering mode, EV, AF and white balance.

As with the Honor 8, images are stunning to look at. With good colours and image details, and the ability to shoot in monochrome, the Honor 8 Pro is a great device for smartphone photography, but not the very best.

Its low-light performance is wonderful, with images appearing brightly lit and exhibiting little image noise. I was yet again impressed by its colour accuracy and balanced exposures.

Flash performance was disappointing, as for some reason images appeared very dull and dark. In fact, I’d advise avoiding using the flash altogether, but that shouldn't be a problem since low-light performance is so good.

As for video, that’s pretty good as well. Unlike the Honor 8, which couldn’t record at 4K, you can use the Honor 8 Pro to record in Ultra HD resolution at 30fps. You can also record Full HD footage at 60fps and 30fps, and there are a couple of slow-motion modes as well – Full HD at 120fps and 720p at 240fps.

After you’ve recorded your slow-mo video, you can edit the part of the video that is shown in slow-mo, making it great for social media sharing.


Honor 8 Pro 5.7-Inch SIM-Free Smartphone - Blue £474.99 amazon uk

Honor 8 Pro review: Verdict

There’s very little to dislike about the Honor 8 Pro. It has a blazingly fast processor, 6GB of RAM, a beautiful Quad HD display, a mesmerising design and solid build quality. And with 64GB of internal storage, dual-SIM capabilities (or microSD card expansion) and a good pair of cameras, it’s amazing value for the money.

The one shortfall is battery life, which isn’t as good as the the OnePlus 3T or the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

Still, the Honor 8 Pro is nothing short of amazing at this price, and if you’re looking to buy a large, phablet-sized smartphone for less than £500, the Honor 8 Pro should be one of your first choices.

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