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  • Fitri Aiyub

Vivo V23e 5G Review: A Glass Half Full

From a 44 megapixel camera to fun and quirky features to enjoy, the Vivo V23e 5G aims high and while obviously it's a beautiful phone with some pretty good specs on paper, but should it be considered as a mid-range phone?

We really love the design of this phone and how it feels in the hand. An ultra thin and lightweight design of just 7.36mm and weighs 172g. There's something about the ridges on the side rails meshes well with the back and the display, giving you a solid grip and maintaining overall smoothness without the typical rounded edges we get with most phones lately. It comes in two colours of Sunshine Coast like the one we have here and Moonlight Shadow.

The AMOLED 6.44 inch screen gets really bright but has quite noticeable bezels around the sides and the bottom and the flat edged screen is always a favourite of ours so we're glad to see it here while accommodating a tear-drop design for the front camera.

You also get an optical under-display fingerprint reader which is snappy and mostly accurate but occasionally misses some attempts. It's a common theme with Vivo phones to have their under-display fingerprint sensors placed very close to the bottom of the phone which is slightly off-putting, given how a natural resting thumb would slightly be higher up.

Mono speakers - well it’s loud, but it lacks fullness and depth that gives you a surround experience

The V23e comes in a triple camera construction consisting of a 50MP main camera, an 8MP ultra wide, and 2MP macro lens. But the biggest feature of this phone is its 44MP Front camera. Aimed for users who enjoy taking selfies that also come with eye autofocus. This setting is not enabled out of the box, so you will have to jump into the settings and turn on AI autofocus. It will however lose track of your eye if you're moving around too much but then again, it's not made to track fast subjects anyways.

Photos from the front camera are not as revolutionary as we'd hope with a 44MP sensor as colours aren't that great. Coming off a bit too muted to our liking and missing that vibrance you want out of a selfie. Sharpness otherwise is very detailed and manages well under sufficient lighting.

But yet again, photos coming from the 50MP camera as well are sort of underwhelming. Translating the same issues of muted colours and vibrance that you get with the front camera. While HDR functions does help in making up for the washed out look in some photos, and while night mode does compensate for exposures well, it just somehow doesn't add up to its megapixel count and could probably have a lot to do with it's processing power .

Nonetheless it does come with fun features such as Double-Exposure mode to capture these ghost-like effects that you can get really creative with, while adding the preset filters ready to be shared online right away.

It also comes with vlogging mode via Dual View, allowing you to capture both yourself and the subject behind the camera simultaneously for those precious moments you wouldn't want to miss out. Video capture sadly only tops at 1080p60fps with HDR functions turned on, which does pretty decently under outdoor settings but may struggle with exposure compensations every now and then. Noise and grain will be more visible under low light scenarios and is probably the most undesirable part of this phone. Considering how 4K resolution has been the norm for most mid-range phones and we're not entirely sure why Vivo has opted to cap it's camera performances short in the V23e. Most probably to favour interest for their X series focusing on more camera capabilities such as the X70 Pro.

The Vivo V23e 5G Runs on 8GB RAM Android 11 with a Mediatek Helio G96 Octa-Core Mali-G57 and records a 608 for Single-Core test and 1814 for Multi-Core test.

Battery life comes at 4050mAh and 44W Flash Charger that would get you to 69% in 30 minutes

The Vivo V23e 5G is priced at RM1,5999 for 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage.

We have mixed feelings about this one because it felt neither here nor there. For a mid range phone, Vivo promises some pretty exciting specs but the execution is not always on the mark.That being said, if you’re into good looking phones with fun camera features, this can serve you well enough But there are other mid range models that can promise you the same and more, with higher refresh rates, dual speakers, or like the Xiaomi 11T with better image outputs. Either way we were hoping for more out of the Vivo V23e 5G and it's hard to find reasons to recommend this phone purely for its specs. It depends whether you see the glass half full or half empty.


Written by Fitri Aiyub

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