Microsoft Lumia 640 review: Outgrowing the mold

Outgrowing the mold

GSMArena team, 18 May 2015.

Telephony and contact management

People Hub is the phonebook that you'll find on any Windows Phone device. It supports multiple accounts, including social ones, and has multiple pages like the rest of the WP interface. The first page is your contacts list, the second one is What's New with all of your friends' social updates, then come (chat) Rooms, and Groups.

Just like the People app, viewing a single contact also allows you to check this specific person's social updates plus you can view the complete history of exchange with this contact in one place, displayed chronologically. Everything but status updates is listed here: calls, texts (actually threads from the Messaging hub) and emails.

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Contacts

We ran our traditional loudspeaker test and the Lumia 640 LTE scored a Good mark. The loudspeaker isn't the loudest around and you should keep in mind that you may miss few calls or notifications in louder environments.

Speakerphone testVoice, dB Pink noise/ Music, dB Ringing phone, dB Overall score
Nokia Lumia 1320 61.7 60.9 66.3 Below Average
Nokia Lumia 735 67.6 66.8 63.7 Below Average
Motorola Moto G (2014) 66.5 66.2 75.1 Average
Nokia Lumia 830 65.3 66.3 78 Good
Microsoft Lumia 640 70.6 65.2 75.9 Good
Microsoft Lumia 640 XL 72.0 67.7 73.5 Good
Xiaomi Redmi 2 70.8 70.9 77.4 Very Good
OnePlus One 74.8 73.5 80.2 Excellent
Motorola Moto G 4G 77.1 76 83.3 Excellent


Multimedia

In Windows Phone 8.1 the Photo Hub has lost the magazine UI in favor of the traditional WP page view. You get three swipe-able pages - all, albums and favorites - all pretty much self-explanatory. Automatic OneDrive backup is available, you just need to enable it from the settings. Microsoft gives you 30GB for free plus 3GB for the each device on which you turn on the automatic OneDrive camera upload.

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Pictures hub

The default Music player in Windows Phone 8.1 uses the familiar page layout - you get Now Playing page; Collection view with shortcuts to artists, albums, songs, genres, playlists, and Music Store highlights. It also allows you to create, edit and delete playlists straight from your phone.

The player is compatible with your Xbox Music account and can stream your songs if you have active connection without saving them on the phone.

Unfortunately, the Music app doesn't support FLAC playback. Equalizer options are available from Settings -> Audio. You can either user presets or customize your own.

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Music app with Now Playing screen and its album view Equalizers

There's an FM radio with RDS support on board the Lumia 640 LTE. You can use the loudspeaker for the FM radio, though you still need the headset connected as it doubles as an antenna.

The video player is a separate app called Video. It has a four-page layout - your collection, movie store, TV store and spotlight. It supports XviD, DivX, MOV, WMV and H.264 videos up to 1080p resolution. It won't play videos using the AC3 audio codec though (often found in MKV containers). There is a limited subtitles support.

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The Video hub

Audio quality is very good

The Microsoft Lumia 640 did well when plugged into an active external amplifier, showing very clean output. Its volume levels are pleasingly high too, to cap a great performance om the first trial.

Performance with headphones was pretty solid too - volume levels drop slightly but still remain decent, while stereo crosstalk rises, but is not much worse than average. It's not the best performance we've seen, but it should more than suffice for the majority of users.

TestFrequency responseNoise levelDynamic rangeTHDIMD + NoiseStereo crosstalk
Microsoft Lumia 640+0.05, -0.05-93.192.90.0090 0.013-93.2
Microsoft Lumia 640 (headphones attached)+0.46, -0.10-92.591.90.015 0.115-56.7
Microsoft Lumia 640XL+0.09, -0.02-93.092.80.0093 0.011-94.4
Microsoft Lumia 640XL (headphones attached)+0.50, -0.07-92.491.80.015 0.116-58.1
Nokia Lumia 735+0.07, -0.04-90.691.40.0093 0.084-91.2
Nokia Lumia 735 (headphones attached)+0.35, -0.21-89.491.20.013 0.194-55.9
Nokia Lumia 930+0.12, -0.02-91.490.70.0099 0.101-90.3
Nokia Lumia 930 (headphones attached)+0.19, -0.43-89.490.70.012 0.501-55.8
Samsung Galaxy S5 mini+0.03, -0.04-92.690.70.016 0.018-94.0
Samsung Galaxy S5 mini (headphones attached)+0.23, -0.05-86.786.20.052 0.167-55.7
HTC One mini 2+0.02, -0.09-94.893.80.010 0.011-93.5
HTC One mini 2 (headphones attached)+0.08, -0.03-94.993.80.028 0.022-90.1

Microsoft Lumia 640 frequency response
Microsoft Lumia 640 frequency response

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

Reader comments

  • Bharath Bhushan Hyd

Used Microsoft 640 LTE for many days almost 3yrs. I am happy with this phone. It is highly secured phone. No body can access your phone because they cant understand Miocrosoft Operating system so easily as android. Useless apps you will not get in st...

  • instig8

Thank you

  • AnonD-713480

Used this phone for a long time now , never had a problem performs really well, The only negative is that windows will soon no longer support what is in my opinion a very good phone, It is a pity because nokia who built the phone are known for qual...