July 16, 2012

Nokia C5-00: Getting accquainted

Alright, after spending the day learning the C5, here's what I can find:

It takes 20-25 seconds to start up; I'm not sure how good is that by today's standards, but compared to the 6300 which took probably less than 10 seconds, the wait will need getting used to.

Messaging is hassle free, and making an MMS (if people still bother with those) is just adding a media file into a regular SMS. Really simple and straightforward.

The calendar view is quite small

You can set multiple alarms for as many appointments/whatever things you need unlike in the 6300 which split them into Alarm, To-do-list and Countdown Timer. Now everything is in one package and that I like. There doesnt seem to be a stopwatch feature now though...

The C5 comes pre-installed with Nokia Maps and (obviously) the map of Malaysia. You are subjected to service provider charges though, but it shouldnt be too much especially if you keep it in Offline mode. Being a keypad phone its not as smooth to use like a touchscreen phone but it doesnt lag at least, and it's fairly easy to read the wordings. This will come in very handy if I ever get lost.

 There's also GPS navigation and Nokia Drive, and again both may be subject to service provider charges, so I probably wont try this until absolutely necessary.

The music player is okay, except that opening the application doesnt take you straight to the player itself; you'll navigate through your library of songs first.

The gallery view for photos and videos is a touch slower (probably because of the animated interface) and it will only rotate through photos sequentially, but holding down the scroll buttons will speed up the browsing. And there's no accelerometer so the phone will have to be held sideways. Not that I'm unfamiliar with~

Calls are slightly more muffled compared to the 6300, but overall still audible.
While making a call today I found the audio to be perfectly clear, and in fact louder than my 6300. Maybe the noisy environment where I tested the C5 (inside a shopping mall) might have affected it somewhat. Loudspeaker works fine too.

There's this nifty feature called Switch, which lets you transfer things like images, contact list, etc, from another compatible device via Bluetooth. Fast and easy to use. I got to bring over all my notes and calendar entries from my 6300.

Browsing is fast with Opera Mini which can be downloaded free for Digi users (yay!). The 6300 was a real sloth with this.

Ringing volume is really loud, but vibrations are not as strong as the 6300.

It has a power saving mode which quickly turns off the backlights and dims it when turned on to save battery power. Otherwise, you can choose to set the time before the lights turn off and when it will enter sleep mode.

Right, the main highlights (for me) of the phone. Instead of the original 3.2 megapixels, the unit I got came with an upgraded 5MP camera. It has flash which also doubles as a video light. In low light conditions it does fairly well, and the flash is sufficiently bright despite its small size. Video images are reasonably sharp, the audio even sharper. In fact the microphone might be a bit too sensitive as I could hear myself breathing when I played back a test video. Or maybe I breathe loudly without realising. As a matter of fact it is mainly because of the camera and video I wanted to upgrade my phone and certainly the C5-00 doesnt look like it will disappoint, not at least with this budget.

 Flash does a pretty good job

 Taken with no flash. Noise is still present but not as bad as the 6300....

...which is like this:

However with what is good, there must be some not so goods....

The micro SD card slot is admittedly a blunder. Firstly the covering latch has to be dug open with a decent length of fingernail. Upon opening, reaching into the card slot requires even MORE fingernails. I didnt have enough so I had to use a pen and poke it to pop it out.

And after that, you'll need a pair of tweezers to grip the card which, although has popped loosed from the slot is still too far inside to reach (unless you got REALLY long fingernails).

The mini micro-USB slot is longer and thinner than the slots shared by my external hard drive and my 6300, and the cable that comes with it is only about 20cm long. Hey Nokia, RM500 for a phone, how about some longer wires eh?

The preinstalled Facebok App, like Opera, is fast and smooth but just loading the home screen already burned RM3 of my talktime, so this will rather be sitting in the back corner of the phone...

Perhaps the biggest drawback though is that the phone does not have any method of notifying for missed calls and received SMSes. Quite a shame since lots of older, lower-spec models have one way or another of doing so.

And there you have it, a quick walk-through of the Nokia C5-00. While it may not be a front-runner, class-leader, head-turner attention-grabber of a phone, as far as the individual user (i.e me) is concerned, its one that (very hopefully) will do what it needs to do without fault and for a long time to come; emulating if not surpassing what my old 6300 has done.

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