Tecno Camon 18P review: a camera phone of a new era

Content

  1. Equipment and design
  2. Software
  3. Cameras
  4. Performance and Benchmarks
  5. findings

Last fall, the Tecno brand introducedthe next generation of the line of inexpensive Camon camera phones. The series includes the base model Camon 18, the intermediate version Camon 18P and the top Camon 18 Premier, which has more interesting cameras than other flagships. But today we don’t have him on the test, but “pawn” - one of the very few budget smartphones with optical zoom. But do you need it, and what else can Camon 18P offer? Let's get a look.

Specifications Tecno Camon 18P
Network 2G, 3G, 4G
Firmware Android 11 with HiOS 8.0
Screen 6.8″, 2460×1080 pixels, 20.5:9, 395 ppi, IPS, 120Hz, 240Hz touch
Chipset MediaTek Helio G96, 12nm
CPU: 2 x A76 x 2.05 GHz + 6 x A55
GPU: Mali-G57MC2
Ram 8 GB
ROM 128 GB
SIM and memory card Triple tray: 2 x nano-SIM + microSD
Camera Triple
Primary: 48 MP, Samsung GM1, 0.8 µm, 1/1.2″, f/1.8, video recording [email protected]
Telephoto 2x: 13 MP, Samsung 3L6, 1.12 µm, 1/3″, f/2.5, video recording [email protected]
Depth sensor: 2 MP, f/2.4
Selfie Center hole, 16 MP, Hynix Hi-1631Q, 1 µm, 1/3″, f/2.0, video recording [email protected]
Battery 5000 mAh
Charging 33W USB Type-C
Wireless interfaces Wi-Fi
Bluetooth
GPS
NFC there is
Biometrics Fingerprint scanner (on screen)
Sound 3.5mm headphone jack
Water protection Not declared
Dimensions and weight 168.86 x 76.67 x 8.77mm
204 g

Equipment and design

Grey-blue Tecno Camon 18P box containsa good set of accessories: USB cable, 33W charger, silicone case and protective film. Well, documentation with a SIM needle, of course. Don't forget anything, folks. Unless I did not understand why it was not possible to stick a film on the screen in the factory. But for some reason, Tecno decided to shift this responsibility to you.

In Russia, the smartphone is presented in three colors:white, black and purple. We have a black version on the test, but it can not be called a boring classic. Part of the back is made of matte plastic, and part of it is made of glossy, which makes the phone quite interesting live with the simplest case materials. And they really saved on them: the plastic is very easily soiled and rather unpleasant to the touch. However, they did not save on silicone for the complete case, so the phone feels normal with it in hand.

The screen, as Tecno likes, is very large:6.8″ with an aspect ratio of 20.5:9. If you are not ready for such a behemoth (almost 17 cm long), do not even look in the direction of Tecno. But if you really want a smartphone with a larger screen, then Camon 18P is a good option. The aspect ratio of 20.5:9 further increases the benefits of a large diagonal, as it makes multitasking more convenient and allows you to scroll the screen less often when reading. In general, a thrill.

The panel itself is excellent in terms of characteristics (FullHD +, IPS, 120 Hz), but due to the impending summer, the brightness is a concern - quite low even at the maximum mark. If you use the phone only indoors, then everything is fine, but outdoors under the sun is not enough. Hertz works rather strangely - even at forced 120 Hz, many applications open at 60 Hz (Telegram, for example), and Google Play - for some reason at 90 Hz. With auto-selection, 120 Hz is visible only in the interface and some applications. But the touch is honest: 240 Hz always and everywhere.

Fingerprint scanner built into the buttonpower, and does not always work perfectly. Sometimes it seems to be wedged, and he stops recognizing the finger, although he usually unlocks it the first time and very quickly. The volume buttons are stylized as separate, but in fact it is a rocker. The SIM tray is triple: using two SIM cards at once does not interfere with inserting a microSD. True, it is inserted from the other side - a rather unusual solution. There are no stereo speakers, music plays only from the holes on the bottom end.

Software

The first Tecno phones released in Russia werefull of ads in the proprietary HiOS shell, but that's in the past. But other oddities are still in the present. There are still many unexpected pre-installed applications in the firmware, such as an AR drawing tool, a simple sampler, or African free audio streaming. Well, at least the tech support app no ​​longer offers a call to Kenya as a solution to all problems, and thanks for that. But if you leave all this garbage out of the brackets, then HiOS is a smart and very functional shell with a bunch of interesting features such as text translation on the screen. Screenshots:

Cameras

So we got to what is the mainfeature of this smartphone. Cameras! The main camera is triple, but one of the modules is a useless stub, so two lenses are of interest: the main one with 48 MP (1/2″ Samsung GM1 - like in Redmi Note 7 and Realme 8 5G) and a 13 MP telephoto lens with 2x zoom ( 1/3″ Samsung 3L6 - as wide as Xiaomi Mi 9T and Galaxy A32/A52/A52s). In itself, the presence of a telephoto in a budget smartphone is a rarity; of the competitors, only some models of the fraternal Infinix and Motorola Edge 20 can be recalled. Let's see how these cameras shoot.

The main camera does a good job - mostpictures correspond to a strong middling level. Comparing night shooting with Redmi Note 7 would be a humiliation for the latter. I would not use the dedicated night mode - it still brightens the frames too much, makes them unnatural, but if that's what you need, then turn it on. Sometimes a marriage happens - frames with low contrast, the wrong color temperature, or some other joke. But in general, the main camera pleased: during the day - naturalness, at night - good detail. Telephoto, of course, gives an increase in detail, but sometimes almost imperceptible.

The front camera of the Tecno Camon 18P is good - 16 megapixels, with 1440p video recording and, attention, dual LED flash. Flashes on the front cameras of budget cameras are another Tecno signature feature.


All examples of photos and videos on the Tecno Camon 18P camera

But on the video side, Tecno traditionally wants to be praised. The maximum video resolution is [email protected], and these 1440p are incomparably better than 1080p inother budget smartphones. Unfortunately, they didn’t implement switching between cameras, so you need to shoot on a TV set separately, but even there the video quality is very good (albeit 1080p).

Performance and Benchmarks

Hardware basis of Tecno Camon 18P - chipsetMediaTek Helio G96. It can be assumed that this is an improved version of the Helio G95, but in fact it is not, the G95 is much more powerful than the G96. This is probably why Tecno, which uses the G95 in its flagship Phantom series, preferred to put the G96 in the Camon line, which is one step lower in the hierarchy. Let's look at the benchmarks first:


normal mode


Game Mode

As you can see from the screenshots, the smartphone is almost unknownthrottling, but the game mode is practically useless for it - the performance increase does not exceed 1%. Most likely, this is just an error in the work of benchmarks. There is heating, but the temperature does not reach uncomfortable values. You can play on Tecno Camon 18P if you are not interested in Genshin Impact - you can set medium settings there at most, and then the game will not deliver any pleasure. But Asphalt 9, Shadowgun Legends, and especially simple games like Brawl Stars run without any complaints. In addition, 120 Hz is supported in games, and sometimes even in excess - in Asphalt 9 there is a 30 fps lock, but the screen is still updated 120 times per second for some reason.

The battery capacity of Tecno Camon 18P is5000 mAh is a standard battery in a modern smartphone. In combination with 120-Hz IPS, miracles are not to be expected - for a day of active work from 5-5.5 hours of the screen, the phone is discharged to zero. I once had this: two hours of YouTube - minus 16%, half an hour in standby mode and an hour in Shadowgun Legends - another minus 26%, an hour and a half of normal use (social networks, camera) - and now only 15% remained. On the other hand, I don’t see much point in phones that live “one and a half, maybe two” days - anyway, you will charge them every night. And this one too. So don't worry.

Well, charging here is quite fast, although withoutrecords - 33 watts. A full charge took me 75 minutes, and the phone was half charged in half an hour, up to 90% in a little less than an hour. NFC support is there, but for us it is now about as valuable as 5G support, which is not here. Although the first Tecnos with 5G have already been released in Africa, so we may soon get to us.

findings

Tecno Camon 18P is a good mid-budgeta smartphone that is a worthy alternative for the younger Redmi Note and Realme number plates. The decision to put a telephoto here instead of the width is quite interesting, I praise for the creativity, but it is only 2x and does not outperform the digital one that much, and there is nothing to replace the possibilities of the width. I want three full cameras! You can also argue about IPS and the materials chosen by the company.

However, if in difficult economic conditionsTecno will continue to put interesting prices on their "camons", then I see no reason not to consider buying them along with more famous smartphones. Still, there are enough of their chips here - huge screens, high-quality video recording, software features.

Price Tecno Camon 18P

    © Oleg Lazarev.