Today we present the review of a smartphone that represents a huge step forward for Huawei, the company that, thanks to its new octacore chipset Hisilicon Kirin 920, can finally compete on equal terms (or almost) with the other Top of the Range smartphone manufacturers.
I refer of course to the Huawei Honor 6, the device kindly sent to us by the staff of Topresellerstore.it, of which we will see a full review today. On the retailer's store you can take advantage of a discount thanks to the discount code GIZTOP.
Huawei Honor 6 octacore, the review of GizChina.it
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Huawei Honor 6: the Kirin 920, a big.LITTLE “more BIG than little”!
In the introduction, I stressed that this Honor 6 represents a huge step forward for Huawei, or a statement that refers in particular to the new octacore chipset Kirin 920 the device is equipped with. Also thanks to this new processor, in fact, the Honor 6 showed much higher performance than the previous smartphones of the house and, above all, a greater general maturity, from the hardware point of view but also from the software one.
Obviously this speech does not take into account the new Huawei Ascend Mate 7, equipped, among other things, with the new Kirin 925 version.
The Hisilicon Kirin 920 is a chipset made in house by Huawei and equipped with architecture big.LITTLE with four Cortex A15 cores clocked from 1.7 to 2.0 Ghz e four Cortex A7 clocked from 1.3 to 1.6Ghz. Such an architecture, as now known, allows a greater optimization of resources by the system, in particular in offering the right compromise between the need for good performance and that linked to the autonomy of the device.
Specifically, on the Honor 6 the Kirin 920 guarantees greater general fluency to the installed ROM, or the Emotion UI in version 2.3 (an 3.0 update is expected) based on 4.4.2 Android KitKat.
The Emotion UI is a very complete ROM in terms of functionality, but I prefer not to go into detail about them as it would represent a repetition of what has already been covered in detail in the review of the Huawei Ascend P7 dual SIM.
However, it is interesting to note the presence of a new App, called "controller“, Which, using the infrared LED of which the Honor 6 is equipped, allows us to use the device as a remote control.
On the Honor 6 the Kirin 920 processor is flanked by a GPU Mali T-624, from ben 3GB RAM and optionally 16 o 32GB of internal memory. The version with 32GB will also have support NFC, absent instead on our test sample.
The test unit is, in fact, the one equipped with 16GB of internal memory, which, as previously mentioned, however, are expandable thanks to the micro SD slot (compatible with memory cards up to 64GB), located in the same compartment where there are also slots for two SIMs (both micro SIM and the first one with 4G / 3G support and the second one exclusively GSM).
The dual SIM support of Huawei Honor 6 is not the classic dual Stand-by to which we are accustomed, but a dual SIM FULL ACTIVE, ie with the possibility of receiving calls on the second SIM even if you are already using the first one.
The complete specifications of the Huawei Honor 6 octacore[komper pid = 140 category = 10 compareform = no]
Huawei Honor 6 octacore: Design
The design of the Honor 6 is very elegant, albeit a little anonymous, especially due to the absence of the manufacturer's logo. The side bezels of the display are thin but not reduced to the minimum as on other terminals and among the peculiarities of this smartphone we find the chrome frame - not metal, but plastic, even if the material seems of excellent quality - which does not cover all the perimeter, but more or less only 3/4 of the same.
A design that someone might not like, but that has convinced me a lot. The size and weight of the device are absolutely promoted; the Honor 6 is, in fact, handy, can be used very often even with one hand and very light, with a well distributed weight on the entire surface.
Good build quality, the device is very solid and well assembled and above all it is very light, that is only 135 grams battery by 3000mAh included.
I found the handle of the device very good and safe, because, despite the smooth rear body, the latter does not create problems because it hardly adheres to the hand, due to the slightly squared forms of the Honor 6.
The positioning of the control buttons - power button and volume rocker - is also convenient, easily reachable with the thumb in the one-handed grip.
The rear body, while looking like glass, is actually made of plastic material, on which - due to normal daily use - “micro-scratches” tend to appear quite easily.
Honor 6 octacore: display (JDI) from 5 inches FULLHD
The Honor 6 display is a panel IPS da 5 inches with resolution FULLHD 1920 x 1080 pixel.
The panel manufacturer is JDI, a brand that in the sector corresponds to a guarantee of absolute quality. The glass is also oil-repellent.
Excellent level of brightness, even against direct sunlight, but occasionally I detected a bit of slowness in the brightness sensor; on the contrary, more than slowness it was a question of real blocks. However, I only noticed this on a couple of occasions.
As for the color reproduction on the Honor 6 display, I found quite deep blacks, but with the usual IPS limit in the tendency to turn gray in the corners. Whites are good, but in general the color palette shows a blue cast.
However, the display is in general an excellent level panel and those exposed are, most likely, "nit-picking" hardly visible to the naked eye.
Staying on the subject of "colors and display", on the Emotion UI it is possible to set the color temperature in the display settings (from warmer to colder), very simply using a bar which, unfortunately, does not show a reference scale.
In addition, there is an interesting option on the Honor 6, namely the ROG Technology, by which it will be possible to set the resolution of the 720p display; as is obvious, when the ROG Technology is activated, the system will require a restart for the re-adaptation of the PPE.
This option - which I would define unprecedented - could be very useful and functional for all those who consider the FULLHD resolution unnecessary - if not excessive.
Among other things, with ROG active, there is a slight loss in sharpness and, perhaps, a bit 'of general blurring, it is difficult to notice the big differences with the standard mode in FULLHD.
In addition, some tests performed on GFX Benchmark, showed that with ROG technology active the Honor 6 achieves higher scores, testifying to the fact that the Mali T-624MP4 GPU "suffers" a bit from fullhd and that, also for this reason, it is not yet at the level of the Adreno 330.
Benchmark GFX test performed with ROG Technology deactivated
Benchmark GFX test (T-REX only) performed with ROG Technology active
Let's close the discussion on the Honor 6 display by saying only that the touchscreen is also very fluid, devoid of Ghost Touch and jamming.
Huawei Honor 6: performance and benchmark
The Huawei Honor 6 has obtained excellent results in the various benchmark tests carried out in these test days. Below you will find a video of the Antutu test, in which the device achieved the excellent score of 41.447 points.
The result obtained by the Honor 6 represents a sort of "numerical" testimony of the performance of the new Kirin 920 chipset.
Here are all the other scores obtained by the Honor 6 in the various benchmark tests:
However, the results obtained in the Antutu benchmark test also vary with ROG Technology active. Here is a comparison:
Honor 6 - Antutu benchmark test with FULLHD resolution
Honor 6 - Antutu benchmark test with HD resolution (ROG Technology Active)
Huawei Honor 6: Gaming Test with Real Racing 3
Although not at the same level as the Adreno 330, in gaming the Mali T-624MP4 GPU proved to be absolutely up to scratch even in tests performed with "demanding" titles such as Real Racing 3.
As you will see in the video that follows, the gaming experience is always very pleasant and the fluidity of the game is excellent, as is the detailed display of all the elements (including the reflection in the rearview mirror).
Very good also the frame rate and audio.
Huawei Honor 6: Telephone part and 4G / 3G navigation
The quality of the reception of the Honor 6 is excellent (tested with H3G, Wind and TIM operators), as well as the audio in capsule earphones and headphones.
Good 3G connectivity, while for 4G I found some uncertainties with Wind and H3G (no problem with TIM). These reception problems are most likely caused by the lack of a fundamental LTE band.
The audio in the speaker is quite good, even if not very powerful and, sometimes, slightly tending to metallic. But still nothing worrying. In fact, the average level of the sector is excellent.
Huawei Honor 6 :: GPS, bluetooth and WiFi
As I have already written for the Nubia Z7 Mini, even for the Huawei Honor 6 in the evaluation of the connectivity compartment (GPS, bluetooth and WiFi) just two words are enough: simply perfect!
Huawei Honor 6 :: Quality of cameras
The Honor 6 is equipped with a rear camera with a sensor Sony IMX214 da 13 mega-pixels, opening F / 2.0 and double LED flash (monochrome).
The Camera App of the Emotion UI is very complete and allows us to select between different shooting modes. However, in 99% of cases I used the smart mode and the shots have always been satisfactory.
The shutter speed is excellent, as well as the average quality of the photos taken. Let's see them in detail.
Excellent shots taken in good lighting conditions:
The photos taken in low light conditions are also very good. Here are some examples:
Good macro and close-ups.
Good HDRs, although with a tendency to saturate the colors too much, overexposing the whole scene and making them tendentially unrealistic.
The double LED flash is also good, which spreads the light evenly on the portrait element.
Huawei Honor 6 - Photo taken with and without active LED flash
As for the video part, the Huawei Honor 6 plays all the most popular formats, including divx and mkv, with good audio and an excellent bitrate. In the video review you can observe a reproduction test.
Also excellent video recording up to 1080p, but even then colors tend to be slightly saturated. However, the recording is very smooth and clear and the audio is excellent.
There is no support for registration in 4K.
Huawei Honor 6: 1080p video recording test
Huawei Honor 6: Battery
The battery life of the Honor 6 is good, although from a 3000mAh unit I was expecting something more. In fact, in particular in intense use, with both SIMs inserted, I managed to obtain the following result: about 12 total hours of use of the device and - in two different days of testing - 2 hours and 44 e 2 hours and 26 of display lit.
From this device I would have expected at least 3 hours and a half of the display on, which can be reached abundantly in use with only one SIM and ROG Technology active.
Huawei Honor 6: Battery life with two active SIMs
Huawei Honor 6: Battery life with an active SIM and ROG Technology
Huawei Honor 6 :: final Thoughts
In conclusion, for the Huawei Honor 6 a slightly more articulated reflection than usual is necessary, especially in consideration of the fact that many have asked me for advice on buying this device, the Nubia Z7 Mini and the Xiaomi Mi4.
After testing them all and 3 I can tell you that it is not easy to give a dry answer, as all these devices have some features that would make me stretch for the choice of one or the other, but in different situations and for different needs.
First of all, and quite trivially, you will have to evaluate if you need dual SIM support and, in the case of an affirmative answer, it is obvious that the Xiaomi Mi4 is automatically excluded from the choice.
The choice between Honor 6 and Nubia Z7 Mini is really difficult. The price is very similar, with a slight advantage for the Z7 Mini, which, perhaps, also has a hardware that, over time, could be more reliable because it comes from a more established manufacturer, Qualcomm.
The same goes for the GPU, the Adreno 330, which in benchmark tests has proved to be still a step higher than Mali T-624 which is equipped with the Honor 6, especially in the management of the FULLHD resolution.
The Honor 6 can offer, on the other hand, other advantages, such as an already localized ROM, a photographic compartment superior to that of the Z7 Mini and a slightly more powerful battery.
In fact, it is impossible not to underline how the Honor 6 is finally the device with which Huawei can really fight on equal terms with smartphones equipped with Qualcomm chipsets from other manufacturers (All while waiting to also try the Mate 7 which, apparently , represents a further step forward for Huawei).
Those who are interested in the Huawei Honor 6 will be able to buy it directly from Italy on Topresellerstore.it (in the version from 16 and 32GB) taking advantage of an exclusive discount through the GIZTOP discount code, reserved for you readers of GizChina!
I remind you that the smartphones bought on Topresellerstore.it they are shipped from Italy and enjoy 24 months of Italian assistance and warranty.