Originally intended for the Indian market, the Narzo range from Realme supplies the European market with its low-cost smartphones like this Narzo 30 5G. A 5G broadband phone at a low price, for the pleasure of your wallet.
Despite its relatively low price, the Narzo 30 5G has nothing to envy of other smartphones on its technical sheet. I am used to high-end smartphones. I tested this smartphone for you and I was rather surprised.
Realme’s Narzo is in a budget range, but the design hasn’t been left out either. It quite honestly looks more upmarket than it actually is. However, the similarities with the Realme 8 5G are clearly evident, and the smartphone looks like it has simply been rebadged.
On the front, there is a 6.5-inch screen covering just over 83% of the surface of the smartphone. The thickness of the borders is not too pronounced, even if we note that the bottom has a relatively pronounced border for the top, the integration of the speaker is relatively well done.
In the upper left corner, we can see the front camera lens, which takes the form of a punch surrounded by the rest of the screen. It’s quite well done and discreet, for a phone at this price. The effort is noteworthy on Narzo’s part.
On the left edge of the phone, there are volume buttons that land perfectly on the fingers when the phone is in hand, which is quite pleasant even if we had preferred two separate buttons. You will also find the SD card port as well as a dual nano-SIM notch as for most current smartphones.
For the right part, there is only the power button, which contains the fingerprint sensor to unlock the smartphone, nothing special in terms of the design and ergonomics of this part.
On the lower edge, we can, of course, see the USB Type-C port as well as a 3.5 mm jack which is appreciable. You will also have the microphone as well as the speaker. It is in itself rather basic for a phone, but well-integrated all the same.
Finally, for the back of the Narzo 30 5G, it is a shiny metallic blue rigid plastic with quite nice reflections that change according to the angle and the light. At the bottom left, is the Narzo logo, and at the bottom right is all the brand information and legal certifications.
On the top of the rear face, we find the block of photo lenses, which are three in number, plus a dummy in order to make it symmetrical. I find that this part is well integrated, sober, and more discreet than on many other Android smartphones.
The Narzo 30 5G offers us a pleasant grip with its 185 grams, which is not that heavy. The design is quite well done and remains very simple, but effective. It’s a cheap phone, but it hasn’t been spared from finishes. Even if the materials are not premium, it remains, without hesitation, of good quality.
The Narzo 30 5G is equipped with an entry-level MediaTek MT6833v SoC. Trade name, MediaTek Dimensity 700. The latter incorporates an 8-core CPU (2 x 2.2 GHz Cortex-A76 + 6 x 2 GHz Cortex-A55), which in itself is not a lightning bolt, but which does what we ask him to. Nevertheless, he doesn’t make the coffee. It’s a shame. In terms of raw performance, it is relatively classic, but don’t expect a Snapdragon 888. It will allow you to do classic tasks for a smartphone and take into account the price of this one, which is aimed at modest wallets.
The smartphone arrives equipped with 4 GB of RAM, which, in my opinion, greatly limits the rest of the components of the Narzo 30 5G and which will quickly show you the limits of this smartphone in terms of power in use. However, for typical use, this is more than enough. Note that it is possible to Swap the RAM into the NAND in the case of overload.
Geekbench is a reference in the world of smartphone benchmarking in order to offer you a clear and precise result of the latter. The Narzo 30 5G scores are 570 in single-core and 1779 in multi-core, which is not huge, but not bad either for a smartphone in this range.
The processor is certainly not very efficient, but it is not in itself a major problem on this Narzo 30 5G. It was obviously necessary to make concessions in terms of performance in order to offer a smartphone at this price. For around 200€ it is an honorable CPU score.
PerformanceTest allows us to measure the performance of the smartphone’s RAM and storage chip. Regarding RAM in the first place, the Narzo 30 has little RAM compared to the rest of its performance, as previously mentioned. The speeds are correct, with 2489 MB/s in reading and 1536 MB/s in writing. Nor is it extraordinary.
The latency is 111 ms, Realme had accustomed us to better on its other smartphones, mid-range as more entry-level. As far as storage is concerned, we have very decent speeds, with 312 MB/s in reading and 261 MB/s in writing. It is very satisfactory and on a smartphone of this range, not all brands offer such good speeds.
The Narzo 30 features an ARM Mali-G57 MC2 GPU. This GPU does not make lightning power but offers the possibility of playing some not too greedy games without too many worries. Do not plan to play GTA San Andreas for several hours on your smartphone, or even enjoy optimal fluidity. Here are the scores obtained on the Narzo 30 and on the classic Realme 8.
The Narzo 30 5G, only has a screen with a resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels, with an aspect ratio of 20:9 and a density of around 405 ppi, all on its 6.5 inches. It’s not a crazy resolution or even an exceptional screen, but it’s more than enough and deserves an honorable mention for its 90 Hz refresh rate, which gives a little extra. Finally, on paper.
Let’s talk about this refresh rate, which may seem attractive. The concern is a question of performance, the screen can certainly be set to 90 Hz, but the phone lags quite often, which does not reveal any fluidity. If not, it’s the opposite. You can either choose between 60Hz and 90Hz or let the operating system choose when to enable one or the other.
It is an IPS LCD panel, which offers rather good colors. Even if the blacks are not very deep, it is rather pleasant to watch videos. Once again, I would like to point out that this is an entry-level smartphone and therefore you should not expect precise and well-worked colorimetry. It is no less good.
In the screen options, it is possible to activate the appearance of the front camera by activating the options display of the front camera by application. It is also possible with the bottom of the screen, but it depends on everyone’s preferences. The option is there to take advantage of the 16:9 format if you wish.
You’ll also be able to enable an eye comfort option, as well as the color temperature of the screen, so you can really adapt it to your eyes, which I think is a good thing on a screen like this. Speaking of brightness and colors, this panel offers between 480 and 600 nits which is relatively bright for this phone. The DCI-P3 color space is supported, but it is also possible to activate the sRGB mode if you want a screen with duller colors.
Like most smartphones in 2021, you can, of course, activate the light mode or the dark mode, which allows your eyes to rest in low outdoor light, which you can adjust in the settings without any problem, and it is quite simple.
Obviously, you will not be able to take advantage of the Always-On option. Given the fact that the screen is not AMOLED, but LCD, you can imagine that the battery life would have taken a hit. Overall, the screen of this Narzo is quite good, the quality is good and the choices have been wise. For the price of this smartphone, it is quite honorable and of good quality.
The Narzo 30 features a 48MP camera as the primary sensor, along with two other sensors. A 2 MP sensor for macro mode and another 2 MP sensor for portrait mode and its background blur. The fourth circle is a dummy circle that serves no purpose. We can be sure that the manufacturer could have at least taken the trouble to put the flash in it, but no, not even.
We find the flash at the bottom, accompanied by the words “48 MP AI Camera”. Chinese manufacturers like to write down the number of megapixels of the camera, thinking that it is a valid selling point, even though, no, the resolution of an image does not really determine its quality.
For photos on the fly, without zoom or specific exposure, the automatic mode is sufficient. It manages backlights quite well, but sometimes has a little trouble with slightly darker environments, as can be seen in the second photo. However, in a fairly cloudy landscape, this does not pose a problem for the device. If the colors are indeed less vivid, the sharpness remains good for a smartphone at 200 euros.
The background blur is also very decent, thanks to the f/1.8 aperture of the main sensor. The photos are not taken at 48 MP; at the base, however, it is 12 MP by default so as not to offer too heavy photos.
Unfortunately, the manufacturer preferred to offer a macro lens rather than an ultra-wide-angle one. It’s a shame not to have offered a more useful sensor, in my eyes, a lens dedicated to macro mode is not of any use on a smartphone. However, as we have an entry-level camera here, the photos remain correct up to a certain level.
Once at x5, the shots are visible but their quality is greatly degraded. It is when we arrive at x10 that, of course, we see what is in the photo, but do not rely on the details to help you. It’s a shame not to have better photos, but we understand why some manufacturers limit the zoom to x6 or x8.
If you photograph fairly focused details, there is a small chance of having something readable, but the inscription on the old village hall is not clear.
In terms of interface, we find Android 11 with the Realme UI 2.0 overlay. Being an iPhone user as a personal smartphone, I like the Realme UI 2.0 overlay, which is very close to the stock Android interface. This interface has many customization options. First are the wallpapers. These, provided by the manufacturer, are mostly quite pretty. Anyway, it’s a personal choice and it won’t change a lot of things in the use of the smartphone.
The icons are also customizable, not only by their style but also by their shape. We find the advanced functionality of Icons ART+, which allows you to change the appearance of the icons, the logo inside, the size, etc. The applications can also be arranged on the screen as you wish, in 5 columns and 6 rows by default, but this number is adjustable (downward) if you want to display more or less.
You can also program how and/or use your fingerprint, such as using it to unlock the screen, app lock, and open the safe. The colors are also customizable, as is the font, which gives us the choice. The notification drawer can also see the shape of its icons change. We are content with 6 different shapes, which is already very good.
Just like the Realme 8i, there is only one speaker for listening to music. It’s very rare to find entry-level smartphones with stereo speakers. Overall, this mono-speaker is good. Certainly, it is not at the level of high-end smartphones. But for a price like the Narzo 30 (200€), it’s still very decent.
The speaker of the device is quite powerful, however, and the sound is not in itself bad for an entry-level smartphone. The sound power is also quite correct, and only the presence of bass is missing on this Narzo 30. As for the highs, they are very present, even perhaps a little too much. They get along a lot, and this can be unpleasant over long use.
The smartphone has Bluetooth 5.1, and a jack for connecting wired headphones or wired headphones, if you want to do it the old-fashioned way. It is a port that is still found naturally on entry-level and mid-range smartphones.
In terms of connectivity, this Narzo is doing extremely well for an entry-level device. We have the 5G standard. At such a price, it’s really nice. However, if you don’t have a 5G plan, it also has 4G connectivity on the French bands, which is already a very good thing. Here is the list of 4G and 5G bands with which the Realme Narzo 30 is compatible:
For the rest of the connectivity, there is Bluetooth 5.1 and NFC, allowing you to connect a Bluetooth speaker with very little latency and, above all, thanks to NFC, super quickly.
At the wired level, there is obviously a USB-C port, but also a jack port. The jack port is a classic for entry-level and mid-range smartphones, which is obviously a connection that is too outdated for high-end devices. However, we appreciate the fact of being able to connect a wired headset or wired headphones to your smartphone without having to buy new ones. Or, use an adapter.
Like almost all smartphones, the Narzo 30 has a facial recognition system as well as a fingerprint sensor on the right side of the device. Let’s start with facial recognition. The latter is operated via the front camera of the device in software. There is therefore no 3D recognition as on the iPhone, but only facial.
As this is not a 3D unlock mode, it will therefore necessarily have full brightness activated at night to detect your face. Fortunately, this option can be deactivated, to avoid damaging your eyes in the middle of the night. Because if I said that the colors of the screen are not aggressive, at night with the maximum brightness, any screen attacks the eyes.
It is possible to unlock only when your eyes are open, which will prevent other people from unlocking your smartphone without your knowledge when you are sleeping or otherwise. However, it will be possible for them to unlock the Narzo via a nice photo of you with your face, clearly visible.
You also have another alternative unlocking method, the fingerprint sensor. The latter works well. It allows you to unlock the smartphone very quickly, even without having taken care to turn on the screen beforehand. The idea of physical fingerprint sensors in the lock/unlock button is very relevant.
Autonomy is very often the defining feature of entry-level smartphones, and the Realme Narzo 30 is no exception to the rule. We find a 5000 mAh battery, which is relatively standard in smartphones under 400 euros. You have to compensate for performance that is not at the top with other very interesting characteristics. For good reason, the autonomy of the device is interesting since it allows you to last a long time without recharging it.
We conducted a test via PCMark. The smartphone gave us more than 18 hours of battery life with the screen on at around 15 to 20% of its maximum brightness, which is a very good battery life. The battery can last up to 2 full days in light use, however. For heavy users of their smartphones, we cannot guarantee that it will last more than a day.
This is often the case with entry-level smartphones, which offer a very good battery life on paper, but which in reality tend to be shy when it comes to performing ultra-greedy tasks.
In terms of recharging, there is an interesting feature. Charging at 18 watts is possible on this Narzo 30. Admittedly, this does not make it the smartphone with the fastest charging time, but only has an advantage in terms of battery life.
The Narzo 30, created by Realme, is a good and inexpensive 5G smartphone. This is still the beginning of the Narzo range in France, but it is just waiting to expand. The device is of good quality, but totally duplicates the Realme 8 5G, which offers the same specifications. It makes You wonder why Realme offers a smartphone identical to an already existing model. The Narzo 30 was released a few months ago, and remains one of the cheapest 5G smartphones on the market!