Huawei P9 review: Ascension

Ascension

GSMArena team, 15 April, 2016.

Simple gallery

The Huawei P9's gallery app offers a Timeline view, which sorts your images by the date you've taken them. Alternatively, you can opt for the standard Album view with all of your images sorted in different albums.

Opening a single image lets you quickly delete or rotate it, as well as gives you some basic sharing options (including streaming it over DLNA).

The info icon up top gives some pretty detailed information about the image, including a histogram. Pulling down from anywhere on the screen lets you take a quick photo without leaving the gallery. The image comes out in a square 1:1 ratio at 2,976 x 2,976.

Album view - Huawei P9 review chronological view - Huawei P9 review viewing an image - Huawei P9 review detailed info - Huawei P9 review camera quick access - Huawei P9 review
Album view • chronological view • viewing an image • detailed info • camera quick access

You can also go into a more capable editor with options for light and exposure adjustments (so you can bring out the shadows or the highlights), filters and beauty enhancements. You can adjust levels and add individual watermarks for time, location, weather, food and mood.

The image editor is quite capable - Huawei P9 review The image editor is quite capable - Huawei P9 review The image editor is quite capable - Huawei P9 review The image editor is quite capable - Huawei P9 review The image editor is quite capable - Huawei P9 review
The image editor is quite capable

Video player

When it comes to playing videos, the Huawei P9 default player is pretty basic. Its sole option is playback speed.

Simplistic video player with few options - Huawei P9 review Simplistic video player with few options - Huawei P9 review
Simplistic video player with few options

Music player

The Huawei P9 comes with Huawei's custom music player app. It offers four default playlists - songs, artists, albums, folders. You can create your playlists, too. The background of the app changes dynamically to match the album art, which is a nice little touch.

The Now Playing screen is pretty standard, it offers album art and lyrics. There are no equalizers to speak off, but the app does have a few extra features. It would try to pull album art, song info and lyrics automatically for you.

The music player - Huawei P9 review The music player - Huawei P9 review The music player - Huawei P9 review The music player - Huawei P9 review The music player - Huawei P9 review
The music player

The Huawei P9 lacks FM radio.

Audio clarity is decent, loudness disappoints

When used with an active external amplifier the Huawei P9 delivered perfectly clean output, which is par for the course for any flagship these days. The volume levels are lower than average though, which means it can’t quite keep up with its rivals.

Stereo crosstalk worsens by a moderate amount when you hook a pair of headphones, but the overall output is still satisfyingly clean. Loudness dropped even further though, so it’s certainly not a performance worth writing home about. It will probably do for people who haven’t invested in large high-impendance headphones, but demanding audiophiles certainly have better options.

And now here go the results so you can do your comparison.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk
Huawei P9+0.01, -0.04-97.398.50.00530.0090-96.2
Huawei P9 (headphones attached)+0.32, -0.02-93.097.90.00660.167-65.5
LG G5 +0.01, -0.04-92.692.60.0051 0.0096-93.3
LG G5 (headphones) +0.05, -0.01-92.292.30.0029 0.037-50.7
Xiaomi Mi 5 +0.01, -0.03-95.395.10.0034 0.0065-95.1
Xiaomi Mi 5 (headphones)+0.01, -0.03-95.295.10.0027 0.013-71.5
Samsung Galaxy S7 +0.01, -0.04-92.592.60.0027 0.0078-92.7
Samsung Galaxy S7 (headphones)+0.05, -0.05-91.992.10.0044 0.063-73.4
Sony Xperia Z5+0.01, -0.04-95.589.50.00330.012-94.8
Sony Xperia Z5 (headphones attached)+0.22, -0.24-95.189.50.00570.212-59.8
Apple iPhone 6s+0.03, -0.04-93.593.50.00160.0075-73.2
Apple iPhone 6s (headphones attached)+0.10, -0.06-93.893.90.00300.101-68.2

Huawei P9 frequency response
Huawei P9 frequency response

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

Reader comments

  • Anonymous

The Huawei P9 has camera issues. When you use it below 50% it drains/misread the battery up to 0%.

  • Anonymous

are the P9 wifi enable

  • Solos

One of the best phone I had ever. Elegant shape, v good camera, 2 years experience. It has some little flaws in soft wear, but it isn't annoying. Also strong body, a it has fallen many times, but till now, did very good. I recommend strongly