Honor 9X review

Kaloyan Ivanov, 24 Oct 2019.

A large and notch-free display

The Honor 9X features a 6.59" LTPS IPS LCD screen with rounded corners, and as we mentioned a few times already, there is no notch. The selfies camera sits on a motorized pop-up module, which has allowed Honor to offer a more immersive viewing experience.

Honor 9X review

The screen has an extended 1080p resolution - 2,340 x 1080 pixels - making for a 19.5:9 aspect ratio and 391ppi density.

There is no word on the type of glass used to protect the screen, but knowing the history of Huawei and Honor, it should be a Corning-made one.

In our testing, the Honor 9X posted good numbers for brightness and contrast ratio - 464 nits and 1285:1 - but we've seen better even in this class.

The minimal brightness we measured turned out excellent at mere 1.8 nits.

Display test 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
Honor 9X 0.361 464 1285
Honor 8X 0.346 427 1234
Huawei P30 Lite 0.39 480 1231
Huawei P30 Lite (Max Auto) 0.413 501 1213
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro 0.347 460 1326
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro (Max Auto) 0.486 640 1317
Samsung Galaxy A50 0 424
Samsung Galaxy A50 (Max Auto) 0 551
Samsung Galaxy A30 0 433
Samsung Galaxy A30 (Max Auto) 0 548
Realme X 0 448
Realme XT 0 447
Realme 5 Pro 0.273 512 1875
Huawei Mate 20 Lite 0.313 460 1470
Nokia 7.2 0.371 498 1342
Nokia 7.2 (Max Auto) 0.421 585 1390

Now let's talk color accuracy. The Honor 9X can be very accurate in representing the sRGB color space. In the Normal + Default display setting, it achieves an average DeltaE of 2.6 with a maximum deviation of 6.5. If you want, you can tweak it even further with the manual options.

That's not the default mode, though, because people tend to prefer livelier colors. The Vivid + Default setting (the actual out-of-the-box state) delivers those, but it also renders quite bluish whites and over the top blues. The Vivid mode is tuned for the DCI-P3 color space, and we measured an average DeltaE of 7.2 with a maximum deviation of 12.4.

Battery life

The Honor 9X is powered by a beefy 4,000 mAh battery. It supports 10W charging, and the provided 5V/2A adapter refills about 27% of a depleted battery in half an hour, which is not that hot.

The Honor 9X scored an excellent rating in our battery life test with a 99h endurance. It did great on all tests - you can talk for more than a day, watch videos or browse the web for half a day, and the frugal standby consumption helps a lot, too.

Honor 9X review

Our battery tests were automated thanks to SmartViser, using its viSerDevice app. The endurance rating above denotes how long a single battery charge will last you if you use the Honor 9X for an hour each of telephony, web browsing, and video playback daily. We've established this usage pattern so that our battery results are comparable across devices in the most common day-to-day tasks. The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritty. You can check out our complete battery test table, where you can see how all of the smartphones we've tested will compare under your own typical use.

Loudspeaker

The Honor 9X has a single bottom-firing speaker at its disposal and scored a Good mark in our test. Indeed, when playing music over YouTube or the default Music player, the speaker sounds rather quiet. Its output is rather mediocre and lacks in the high and low frequencies.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Samsung Galaxy A30 65.9 66.6 68.4 Below Average
Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro 64.8 71.2 82.2 Good
Honor 9X 65.6 71.5 81.8 Good
Honor 8X 67.1 72.9 81.6 Very Good
Realme X 67.9 73.5 80.4 Very Good
Samsung Galaxy A50 68.9 71.3 82.7 Very Good
Nokia 7.2 66.5 71.9 85.3 Very Good
Huawei P30 Lite 71.5 73.8 83.1 Excellent
Realme XT 68.9 74.3 89.8 Excellent

Audio quality

We are already used to seeing smartphones deliver perfectly accurate output with an external amplifier these days, but the Honor 9X fails to live up to the task. While its readings were mostly fine, the stereo separation wasn't ideal, and there was slight shakiness to the bass frequency response. On the upside, the loudness was above average on this occasion.

Clarity deteriorated further with headphones, frequency response getting even shakier and stereo crosstalk increasing notably. Some intermodulation distortion crept in, and loudness was well below average adding up to a forgettable performance.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk
Honor 9X+0.27, -0.18-94.393.20.00420.0094-69.8
Honor 9X (headphones)+0.72, -0.26-93.292.30.00820.439-43.6
Honor 8X+0.01, -0.04-92.392.40.00410.0085-80.7
Honor 8X (headphones)+0.45, -0.54-92.292.80.00840.492-51.5
Nokia 7.2+0.03, -0.04-93.093.20.00210.014-93.4
Nokia 7.2 (headphones)+0.05, -0.04-93.793..30.00210.029-75.1
Redmi Note 8 Pro+0.07, -0.07-93.693.90.00220.0068-91.9
Redmi Note 8 Pro (headphones)+0.26, -0.29-92.793.20.0270.413-48.5
Samsung Galaxy A60+0.04, -0.16-93.693.30.00110.010-94.1
Samsung Galaxy A60 (headphones)+0.05, -0.16-93.593.00.00310.020-69.9
Realme XT+0.08, -0.08-92.292.10.00120.0081-91.4
Realme XT (headphones)+0.50, -0.16-92.191.90.0070.363-48.9

Honor 9X frequency response
Honor 9X frequency response

You can learn more about the tested parameters and the whole testing process here.

Reader comments

  • JP

I ordered and received a 9X from amazon, but Google recognizes this device as Y9 Prime instead of P Smart Z instead as you mentioned in your review. Did I just get an inferior version? Is Huawei disguising the phone or merchant is doing this uneth...

  • v

Is honor still continue customer support ? aftermath the issued with Google?

  • Anonymous

8X is better then 9x?