Nokia Lumia 630/635 review: Bottom up

GSMArena team, 23 May 2014.

Unboxing the Lumia 630/635

The Nokia Lumia 630 and Lumia 635 have identical retail packages for the most part. Both come with some printouts and an A/C adapter. That's it - no microUSB cable and no headset.

Certain variants of the Lumia 635 - such as those for T-Mobile and MetroPCS - also come with a data cable, and the AT&T variant also comes with an Extra Bright Orange back panel. But for the most part, the retail package is as bare as it gets.

Nokia Lumia 630/635 360-degree spin

Both the Lumia 630 and 635 have identical size and weight, as the added LTE antenna in the 635 has had no effect on the dimensions of the device. They stand at 129.5 x 66.7 x 9.2mm and weigh 134g. Compared to the Lumia 520, the 630/635 0.5" bigger display, which makes them a centimeter taller, 3mm wider and a hair ticker.

Design, build quality and handling

The Nokia Lumia 630/635 is made of matte plastic, while the entire front is protected by a third generation Gorilla Glass. It's notably less curvy than the Lumia 520, with perfectly flat sides, along the lines of the Asha styling and the X series.

If you liked the colorful options offered for the Lumia 520, the Lumia 630/635 won't disappoint either. You can choose between the traditional white and black, bright orange, bright green, and bright yellow. The exchangeable cover wraps around the entire inner body. There is no extra cover in the retail package though, you'll need to buy one.

Nokia Lumia 630 Nokia Lumia 630 Nokia Lumia 630 Nokia Lumia 630
Nokia Lumia 630

Our Nokia Lumia 630 came in black, which is quite good at hiding smudges. When off, the ClearBlack screen blends almost seamlessly with the black bezels (which are by no means slim).

The Lumia 630/635 has the usual simple and minimalist design we've come to expect of Nokia - whether it's Asha, Android or Windows Phone inside. The phone looks fresh and inviting. Thanks to its matte plastic finish you'll get a great grip and the compact body is pleasant and comfortable to handle.

Nokia Lumia 630 Nokia Lumia 630
Handling the Lumia 630

Display

The Nokia Lumia 630/635 packs a 4.5" ClearBlack IPS display of FWVGA resolution (480 x 854 pixels). The pixel density of 218ppi provides reasonable sharpness and the image quality is surprisingly good.

Nokia Lumia 630
Nokia Lumia 630's IPS display

Colors are very punchy and viewing angles are quite decent too. There's little color and contrast loss even if you look at it at an extreme angle.

Here's a microscopic image of the screen's RGB matrix - it does come with a standard pixel arrangement.

Nokia Lumia 630

Although we found the blacks and pixel density of the Lumia 630/635 to be only average we should note that the contrast is good, particularly for this price range.

Display test 50% brightness 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
Nokia Lumia 630/635 0.24 184 764 0.71 508 771
Nokia Lumia 625 0.18 200 1111 0.33 395 1205
Samsung Galaxy Ace 3 0.22 180 828 0.54 472 879
Sony Xperia M 0.17 150 865 0.57 569 983
Nokia X 0.39 247 637 0.64 461 715
Nokia XL 0.33 251 752 0.53 466 874
Nokia Lumia 520 - - - 0.51 422 834
Sony Xperia E1 - - - 0.72 489 677
Nokia Asha 501 - - - 0.37 354 947
Motorola Moto G 0.35 315 906 0.57 550 967
Sony Xperia C 0.18 151 842 0.66 639 962
Apple iPhone 5 0.13 200 1490 0.48 640 1320


The smartphone did well in our sunlight legibility test, beating much more expensive offerings in the process.

Sunlight contrast ratio

  • Nokia 808 PureView
    4.698
  • Apple iPhone 5
    3.997
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    3.997
  • Samsung Galaxy S5
    3.549
  • Samsung I9300 Galaxy S III
    3.419
  • Nokia Lumia 925
    3.402
  • Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4
    3.352
  • Samsung Omnia W
    3.301
  • Samsung Galaxy S
    3.155
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 mini
    3.127
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 zoom
    3.118
  • Nokia N9
    3.069
  • Samsung Galaxy Note
    2.970
  • Sony Xperia Z1
    2.950
  • HTC One S
    2.901
  • BlackBerry Q10
    2.856
  • Samsung Galaxy S II
    2.832
  • Samsung Galaxy S II Plus
    2.801
  • BlackBerry Z30
    2.790
  • Huawei Ascend P1
    2.655
  • Sony Xperia ZR
    2.672
  • Nokia Lumia 900
    2.562
  • HTC One Max
    2.537
  • Nokia Lumia 720
    2.512
  • HTC One
    2.504
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2.462
  • Samsung Galaxy S III mini
    2.422
  • HTC One (M8)
    2.371
  • Motorola RAZR i
    2.366
  • Samsung Galaxy Note II
    2.307
  • Oppo Find 7a
    2.279
  • Apple iPhone 4S
    2.269
  • HTC Desire 600 dual sim
    2.262
  • LG Nexus 5
    2.228
  • HTC One X
    2.158
  • Nokia N8
    2.144
  • Oppo Find 5
    2.088
  • Nokia Lumia 630/635
    2.056
  • BlackBerry Z10
    2.051
  • Apple iPhone 4
    2.016
  • HTC One mini
    2.003
  • LG G2
    1.976
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia ray
    1.955
  • Sony Xperia Z2
    1.944
  • Samsung Galaxy Camera
    1.938
  • LG G Pro 2
    1.922
  • HTC Butterfly
    1.873
  • Huawei Ascend P6
    1.865
  • Sony Xperia V
    1.792
  • Sony Xperia U
    1.758
  • Meizu MX3
    1.754
  • Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
    1.740
  • LG Optimus 4X HD
    1.691
  • HTC One V
    1.685
  • BlackBerry Q5
    1.682
  • LG Optimus Vu
    1.680
  • LG Optimus GJ
    1.666
  • HTC Desire V
    1.646
  • Samsung Galaxy Ace 3
    1.622
  • Sony Xperia Z Ultra
    1.578
  • Samsung Galaxy Core
    1.563
  • LG Optimus G Pro
    1.552
  • LG Optimus 3D
    1.542
  • Samsung Galaxy Core LTE
    1.542
  • Nokia Asha 302
    1.537
  • Sony Xperia M
    1.473
  • Nokia Lumia 610
    1.432
  • Samsung Galaxy Grand Neo
    1.393
  • Gigabyte GSmart G1355
    1.361
  • Samsung Galaxy Grand
    1.321
  • HTC Desire C
    1.300
  • Nokia Asha 501
    1.270
  • LG Optimus L7
    1.269
  • LG Optimus L9
    1.227
  • Meizu MX
    1.221
  • Sony Xperia E dual
    1.203
  • Samsung Galaxy Pocket
    1.180
  • Sony Xperia tipo
    1.166
  • Samsung Galaxy mini 2
    1.114

Nokia has supplied the Lumia 630/635 will its proprietary Color Profile app that lets you tune the saturation and color balance to your liking. The Display settings also include a Brightness option - since the Lumia 630/635 lacks an ambient-light sensor, you can tune the brightness levels for the three default profiles Windows Phone offers - Low, Medium and High. We found this particularly useful.

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