Samsung Galaxy A54 5G review: S23 lite in all but name

Samsung’s Galaxy A54 5G wants to be the clear choice for anyone who needs a new phone but doesn’t want to settle for the price Galaxy S23, It has similar styling, its interface is virtually identical, and its photos and videos feature the trademark Samsung Pop.

after last year Galaxy A53 Was so hampered by underpowered internals, though, could its 2023 refresh bring back some goodwill to the line? Samsung certainly hopes so, after all, it’s a phone packed with features including water and dust resistance, a punchy, smooth screen, and a nifty triple camera setup. Best of all, it has a new processor, so hopefully it won’t stutter like the A53 did when we tested it.

While the A53 cost £399 at launch, however, the A54 5G starts at £449. With its high price and stiff competition from the 200MP Redmi Note 12 Pro+and cheaper alternatives like Poco X5 5G Nothing more phones (1) On the heels of Samsung, can the A-series still earn our spot best affordable smartphones list,

Design and Build: Bulbous but flat

The A54 5G has a round, bulbous frame that’s very flat on its front and back for good contrast. It is available in Black, Lime, Violet and White; We tested the white one, complete with silver plastic banding sandwiched by two sheets of glass. It is comfortable to hold and hold.

While the white version repels fingerprints well, the glossy back will look tarnished in no time if you opt for a darker option. Go for the lighter colored A54 5G if you want it to look box-fresh for longer.

It looks a lot like the Galaxy S23, but the A54 5G’s glass back panel doesn’t look or feel super-premium. The phone also doesn’t have the cool-to-the-touch metal frame most flagships pack. Between its chunky bezels and blocky design, its styling is a whole lot less mature than other plastic-framed competition like the Redmi Note 12 Pro+. Still, we can’t argue with the fact that the A54 5G is water and dust resistant up to IP67 – a feature that’s rarely seen under the £600 mark.

With all the buttons on the right, and the only interruption being a USB-C port and speaker matte silver plastic banding at the base, the phone doesn’t have a 3.5mm headphone jack. Around back, the main visual draws are the three raised camera rings at the top left, which draw focus from the Samsung insignia and CE marking.

screen: super, thanks for asking

samsung galaxy a54 display

Sporting a 6.5-inch Super AMOLED panel, the Galaxy A54 5G delivers exactly what you’ve come to expect from a Samsung phone – quality display credentials. In the flesh, visuals pop nicely with vibrancy and saturation, blacks are inky and deep, and thanks to a smooth 120Hz refresh rate, the Glide feeds with the floatiness we’ve come to expect for a phone at its price point .

Samsung has upgraded the display to feature a more responsive dynamic refresh rate, so the A54 5G can switch between 60Hz and 120Hz depending on what’s on-screen to save power.

While we can’t complain about the phone’s screen quality after a week with the phone – it displayed content on Disney+ and Netflix brilliantly – it doesn’t get as bright as some of the competition’s high-brightness modes capping out at 800 nits. London’s April rain barely pushed the A54 5G’s screen to the limit for comfortable outdoor viewing, but if you live somewhere sunnier it’s not best-in-class when it comes to brightness, it Might be an idea.

Camera: Macroeconomics

The A54 5G ditches the depth sensor from the A53’s quad-camera setup to make way for a triple camera setup with a primary, ultra-wide and macro camera mix.

This year, the primary 50MP camera is new and comes with f/1.8 aperture and optical image stabilization (OIS). The flanking cameras – a 12MP ultra-wide with an f/2.2 lens and a 5MP macro camera with an f/2.4 lens – are the same secondary cameras we saw on its predecessor.

Photos captured in bright environments look excellent for the most part, full of contrast and saturation, but still sporting a decent amount of dynamic range. Provided you don’t want to crop too much into your snaps or edit your photos, the A54 5G’s main camera is about as good as you’ll get for the price if you consider yourself a discerning casual picture-taker .

However, for amateur photographers, you might find Samsung’s processing a bit heavy-handed, especially when the light starts to get low. The phone also misses out on Raw capture, so you won’t be able to edit unadulterated versions of your photos in apps like Lightroom for Mobile.

The secondary cameras of the phone are also good for the price, even if they don’t surprise you. The ultra-wide is a fixed-focus lens system, and misses out on the dynamic range of the main camera, especially when recording video. It also suffers at night, although Samsung’s processing keeps noise under control, provided your subject is still.

The 5MP macro camera on the A54 5G is powerful in bright environments – the same can be said of its 2MP competition on almost every midrange Oppo, Poco, Realme, Redmi and Xiaomi phone launched in the last two years. Avoid shooting with it when the light is dim though, as the noise outweighs shots in the best of light.

The 32MP selfie camera is equipped with an f/2.2 lens and takes great pictures with pared-back beauty filters for realistic, yet stunning results. Video is captured with both cameras at up to 4K (30fps), although stabilization is at its best at Full HD (30fps), so we’d suggest shooting for great-looking footage for the price.

Display: Box Checking

Samsung Galaxy A54 Gaming

Thank god the A54 performs better than last year’s A53. By choosing the Exynos 1380 processor to power the experience, and matching it with either 8GB or 12GB of RAM, the A54 5G is, for the most part, lag-free.

We tested the 8GB RAM, 128GB storage variant, and the phone supports dynamic RAM as well, so we plunked down the extra 8GB of storage to help manage multitasking. There is also SD card support so you can expand the storage space.

Despite being a marked improvement over its predecessor, we still experienced some teething problems in our first 24 hours with the phone – in particular, the Twitter app stalled a couple of times. That said, until the second day, everything from games to social media apps ran well for the most part.

The phone runs on Android 13 and Samsung’s OneUI 5.1 on top. The fact that OneUI packs many of the same core experiences as the Galaxy S23, including the Link to Windows bake-in, means that, for the most part, it really does deliver an S23 Lite experience across the board. , Which many people will be looking for.

The A54 5G also benchmarks well – slightly better than the similarly priced Redmi Note 12 Pro+. While it’s not a gaming champion, the phone chews through Marvel Snap at max graphics settings (60fps), and runs Genshin Impact smoothly at low graphics settings (30fps), making it a capable midrange gamer .

Battery: Wired

Samsung Galaxy A54 USB-C port

There’s no wireless charging here, so it’s missing an S23 highlight, and an area where less-costly competition such as nothing phone (1) The A54 does the best of 5G. You don’t even get a power brick with the phone, just a USB-C cable — a win for the planet, but likely not your wallet. Still, you get a massive 5000mAh battery to keep things going.

Plug the A54 5G into a fast charger, and the phone charges up to 50 percent in 28 minutes and 100 percent in an hour and 25 minutes. These numbers are very low, and neither is the phone’s 25W charging speed, but should do the job for quick top-ups or overnight charges.

With ample amount of photo taking, gaming and viewing the phone spends a comfortable day. Normally, we had a quarter tank left by the end of the day, which is going great.

Samsung Galaxy A54 5G Verdict

Samsung Galaxy A54 Rear

The A54 5G is a solid midrange phone. Is it exciting? Not particularly. Its design is a clunky take on the flagship S23 line, and its respectable performance across the board is matched with very few accolades. Nevertheless, we’re happy to recommend the A54 5G.

The phone does what it needs to do, especially after last year’s underpowered A53 5G, its cameras are capable for the price, and it has a great screen that’s perfect for watching content.

The year-over-year price hike, and the fact that you can get more full-featured phones for less, both made us have initial reservations when we first saw the phone. But if you can’t justify spending £899 on an S23, want a Samsung phone and don’t mind sacrificing some style and power, then the A54 5G certainly warrants your consideration.

Samsung Galaxy A54 5G Technical Specifications

Screen 6.4in, 2400×1080 AMOLED w/ 120Hz
processor Samsung Exynos 1080
Memory 6/8 GB
camera 50MP, f/1.8 w/ OIS + 12MP, f/2.2 Ultrawide + 5MP, f/2.4 Macro Rear
32MP Front
storage 128/256 GB, plus microSD
Operating System Android 13 with OneUI
Battery 5000mAh w/ 25W Wired Charging
DIMENSIONS 158x77x8.2mm, 202g

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