The existence of Nokia X30 5G was speculated by me in June 2022. Most of the speculations were correct and this was made based on observation of HMD Global’s pattern.
Back then I stressed the importance of launching a device that should be potent enough to satisfy fellow Nokia fans. So, there is a lot riding for the Nokia X30 5G, the first Pureview device without Zeiss branding. For the first time, in what seems to be forever, we now have a capable mid-ranger with a twist. I would say this is among the best hardware configuration you could get at the moment , though the addition of wireless charging capability would have sweeten the deal. If you are in the fence on which device to buy, or whether it is worth the money, then do read till the end.
In this article, I share my experience on this device and whether it actually offers the best Pureview experience.
Nokia X30 5G
The elephant in the room is the design language. Once you get pass that, then you would see that the device could very well be among the best for its price range. It is not the fact that the design is unlike any Nokia device previously that its hard to digest, but sharing it with other manufacturers, makes it less unique. And its done for cost cutting. But, that means HMD Global is now able to channel that savings to other department and that’s what exactly they did with G60 and X30!
My main highlight would be the camera setup and performance, and we will get there shortly once I am done with the general review of the device. I find that the slightly more compact form factor of the X30 to feel better in hands compared to the G60. But, the differences are negligible and both devices feels sturdy and the matte finishing over the back gives you an excellent tactile feedback. Its amazing that HMD Global managed to pull this out despite using recycled material. In more ways than one, the X30 is here to undo the shortcomings of their first Pureview device, the Nokia 9 Pureview. An OLED display, under screen fingerprint scanner and a Pureview setup makes them more alike than the Nokia 8.3 5G. The display on the X30 is among the best used till date, an AMOLED display with 90Hz fast refresh rate.
It lacks the Puredisplay certification and doesn’t support HDR playback like the Nokia 9 Pureview and streaming is limited to only 1080p.But, the performance is certainly on par with any Puredisplay devices out there, something that I was shocked to see even on the Nokia G60 5G. The telephony aspect is standard with good call quality, a good reception though I am unable to try out the 5G aspect due to lack of infrastructure here. Loudspeaker is loud and clear but does feel hollow as compared to devices like the Nokia 8 Scirocco. The under display finger print scanner works well, and quite similar to my experience with other manufacturers out there, but I did have some instances where it did not register the thumb adequately. SD695 5G along with the 8GB RAM gives a buttery smooth experience across the board where everything just works well. Battery life is essentially good and will easily last day of moderate usage. Fast charging with QC charger works reliably.
The Pureview Experience
As always this is where I am interested the most. And with the Nokia X30 5G, the hype created is even more as this is marketed as having the best Pureview experience till date. So the Nokia X30 5G though being a midrange, has a twist. It uses a premium grade sensor and this combination is most welcomed for photo centric users out there. While I cannot verify the information, it seems that the software for imaging is also in house. With the X30 and G60, we are now introduced with the Nightmode 2.0 which in general is a whole new experience in a Nokia device. Unfortunately, the truth is the experience is fractured, like all their devices before this. But the good thing is, for the first time, I believe that HMD Global is capable of improving the experience as the imaging solution is handled in house unlike before this.
With the X30, the daylight images are pretty decent, as this days, day light images has somewhat reached a plateau and improvements are more on low light and videography.
Daylight images are pretty good, with enough details and less noise. This is an upgrade over the Nokia 8.3 5G which tends to sharpens the images and introduces a lot more noise making the experience underwhelming.
The Nokia 8.3 5G has a fantastic ultrawide sensor with one of the better algorithm out there. With both the X30 and G60, Nokia introduces fusion algorithm where input of both primary and ultrawide sensor are combined for a sharper final image. This actually works well and images are sharp. But I do have a couple of issues with the X30. Colors generally tend to be on the warmer side which is something that I personally disliked, similar to the XR20. And there is no nightmode for the ultrawide output like on the 8.3 5G.
This is where the Nokia X30 leaves the competition in a dust. The much more potent sensor, combined with OIS and new nightmode algorithm makes the X30 as the best Nokia device when it comes to low light photography. It is really nice to see reserved details with very low noise and boosted colors for low light imaging.
And unlike the Nokia G60 5G, the dark vision works brilliantly. And this is something that could easily rival more expensive competitors. The results are much better detail, even less noise and better containment of bright subjects.
In general, if I have to sum up my camera experience on the Nokia X30 5G, the highlight will be the nightmode experience. The day imaging could certainly improved in terms of color reproduction and temperature. The same can be said for the ultrawide output. The nightmode and dark vision is perfect as it is, though I am hoping for inclusion of the nightmode algorithm for the ultrawide sensor.
My detailed review here :
To better understand the new camera algorithm and how different the sensor is on the X30, I would suggest to head to my video here where I compare it against the G60.
Do stay tuned for the upcoming battle of the new Pureviews where the X30 5G compares against the Nokia 9 Pureview and Nokia 8.3 5G
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