Xiaomi Mi 5 review: Form and function

Form and function

GSMArena team, 16 March, 2016.

Display

The Xiaomi Mi 5 features a new 5.15" IPS display of 1080p resolution. Even though most of the rumors suggested an upgrade to QHD resolution, Xiaomi chose to keep the Full HD screen, and we don't mind that. A pixel density of 428ppi is more than respectable and leaves the Snapdragon 820 chip with power to spare on tasks and productivity.

The viewing angles are impressive as well, there is hardly any color shift or contrast loss when looking the Mi 5's display at an angle. It isn't AMOLED grade regarding contrast, but it sure is the next best thing.

Xiaomi Mi 5 review

The new display utilizes 16 LEDs on backlighting, allegedly four more than most modern-day flagships, and Xiaomi claims it will provide more even backlighting at up to 600 nits of brightness. Our tests confirmed the claim for maximum brightness as we measured 628nits worth of luminance.

The minimum display brightness is 0.7nits, which is perfectly suitable for late-night reading in a dark room and it's even lower than the Galaxy S7's. The screen's contrast ratio is excellent at 1227:1.

When it comes to color rendering, the Mi 5 has an excellent color rendering with an average DeltaE of 3.2 and a maximum deviation of 6.9 in the whites. Anything below 4 is considered calibration level accuracy.

Display test 100% brightness
Black, cd/m2 White, cd/m2 Contrast ratio
Xiaomi Mi 5 0.51 628 1227
Xiaomi Mi 4 0.73 679 929
Xiaomi Mi 4c 0.28 452 1609
Apple iPhone 6s 0.36 536 1481
Samsung Galaxy S7 0.00 391
HTC One M9 0.44 534 1221
OnePlus Two 0.30 399 1334
Sony Xperia Z5 0.59 583 986
Microsoft Lumia 950 0.00 328
Samsung Galaxy S6 0.00 363

The Xiaomi Mi 5 performed excellently in our sunlight legibility test, too. Posting a very high value for a non-AMOLED panel, the Mi 5 ranks higher than the Xperia Z5 and close to the AMOLED Lumia 950.

Sunlight contrast ratio

  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
    4.615
  • Samsung Galaxy S7 edge
    4.439
  • Samsung Galaxy S7
    4.376
  • HTC One A9
    4.274
  • Samsung Galaxy A3
    4.241
  • Samsung Galaxy S6
    4.124
  • Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
    4.124
  • Samsung Galaxy Note5
    4.09
  • Huawei Nexus 6P
    4.019
  • OnePlus X
    3.983
  • Oppo R7s
    3.964
  • Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
    3.918
  • Samsung Galaxy A5
    3.895
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 outdoor
    3.879
  • Samsung Galaxy J2 outdoor
    3.873
  • Samsung Galaxy A8
    3.859
  • Apple iPhone 6
    3.838
  • Microsoft Lumia 950XL
    3.837
  • Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
    3.817
  • Motorola Moto X (2014)
    3.816
  • Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
    3.789
  • Apple iPhone 6s
    3.783
  • Meizu Pro 5
    3.781
  • Vivo X5Pro
    3.706
  • Samsung Galaxy A7
    3.679
  • BlackBerry Priv
    3.645
  • Apple iPhone 6s Plus
    3.530
  • Microsoft Lumia 950
    3.512
  • Oppo R7 Plus
    3.499
  • Samsung Galaxy J7
    3.422
  • Meizu MX5
    3.416
  • Oppo R7
    3.320
  • Xiaomi Mi 5
    3.240
  • Samsung Galaxy J2
    3.235
  • Motorola Moto X Play
    3.222
  • Lenovo Vibe Shot
    3.113
  • LG Nexus 5X
    3.092
  • Huawei Mate S
    3.073
  • Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
    3.065
  • Apple iPhone 6 Plus
    3.023
  • Samsung Galaxy Note
    2.97
  • Huawei Mate 8
    2.949
  • HTC One S
    2.901
  • Sony Xperia Z5
    2.876
  • Microsoft Lumia 550
    2.851
  • Sony Xperia Z5 compact
    2.784
  • LG V10
    2.744
  • Xiaomi Redmi 3
    2.735
  • Sony Xperia M5
    2.69
  • Xiaomi Mi 4i
    2.641
  • Xiaomi Mi 4c
    2.574
  • Microsoft Lumia 640
    2.563
  • Motorola Moto G 4G
    2.546
  • Oppo F1
    2.528
  • Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
    2.525
  • HTC One
    2.504
  • Sony Xperia M4 Aqua
    2.503
  • Motorola Moto G
    2.477
  • Huawei G8
    2.471
  • Sony Xperia Z
    2.462
  • Xiaomi Mi 4
    2.424
  • Huawei Honor 7
    2.406
  • ZUK Z1 by Lenovo
    2.382
  • HTC One M9
    2.334
  • HTC One E9+
    2.305
  • Lenovo Vibe K4 Note
    2.254
  • Sony Xperia C5 Ultra
    2.253
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)
    2.249
  • Sony Xperia C4 Dual
    2.235
  • Motorola Moto G (2014)
    2.233
  • LG Nexus 5
    2.228
  • Huawei P8
    2.196
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 2
    2.166
  • OnePlus Two
    2.165
  • HTC One X
    2.158
  • LG Aka
    2.145
  • Archos 50 Diamond
    2.134
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note
    2.119
  • Huawei P8lite
    2.078
  • Moto G 3rd gen max manual
    2.026
  • Sony Xperia E4g
    1.972
  • Meizu m2 note
    1.892
  • BlackBerry Leap
    1.892
  • HTC Butterfly
    1.873
  • ZTE Nubia Z9 mini
    1.759
  • Sony Xperia U
    1.758
  • Asus Zenfone Selfie
    1.68
  • Motorola Moto E (2nd Gen)
    1.675
  • ZTE Nubia Z9
    1.659
  • Motorola Moto E
    1.545
  • Sony Xperia M
    1.473
  • Xiaomi Redmi 2
    1.311
  • Sony Xperia C
    1.283
  • Meizu MX
    1.221

Battery life

Xiaomi Mi 5 has got pretty much the same battery as its predecessor - it's a 3,000 mAh Li-Po unit, sealed, of course. We ran our battery test and the Xiaomi Mi 5 scored a 92h rating, which means you can count on the battery to last just a few hours short of 4 days if you do an hour each of calling, browsing the web and video playback a day. Such usage pattern may be somewhat artificial, but we've established it, so our battery results are comparable across devices.

Adding a second SIM card cuts only 1 hour from the total endurance rating. Overall, we're quite happy with the result as it's well beyond the 68-hour rating of the Mi 4.

Xiaomi Mi 5 review

The Mi 5 did well on all tests - 3G talks, web browsing, video playback, and it posted excellent scores on standby, which makes it a solid overall performer.

The battery testing procedure is described in detail in case you're interested in the nitty-gritties. You can also 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.

Connectivity

The Xiaomi Mi 5 supports 7 LTE bands, quad-band GSM and quad-band 3G connectivity with HSPA support. You can tap to an LTE network on either SIM, but once you do, the second one will be limited to 3G or GSM connectivity. You can even have both registered on 3G networks, when 4G is not available.

The rest of the connectivity features include dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac support and Wi-Fi Direct. Wireless screen mirroring is available via the Miracast protocol.

There is also support for Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, GPS, and GLONASS. There is no FM radio support, though - we tried installing an FM app - but there is no FM hardware.

The Mi 5 is Xiaomi's second device to support USB Type-C - it's the new reversible connector for USB that builds on top of USB 3.1.

The IR blaster is located on the top and coupled with the right software, it can be used to operate any remotely controlled home appliance, turning the Xiaomi Mi 5 into a universal remote. Xiaomi provides a new version of its MiRemote app right out of the box.

Xiaomi has deemed the Mi Remote and Mi Home Center (for controlling home appliances) quite important, as it provided a shortcut at the bottom left on the lockscreen.

MiRemote app - Xiaomi Mi 5 review Shortcut on the lockscreen - Xiaomi Mi 5 review Shortcut on the lockscreen - Xiaomi Mi 5 review Shortcut on the lockscreen - Xiaomi Mi 5 review Shortcut on the lockscreen - Xiaomi Mi 5 review
MiRemote app Shortcut on the lockscreen

Reader comments

  • Bailey

Yet i am using the global rom on my Mi6 and have never experienced this issues. i have had more lag and bugs on my S7 than i have ever had on a Xiaomi device. And my S7 could not make it through a day as well as my iPhone 6s that cant make it thr...

Update to v9 miui , auto brightness got better than v8,.

You should install global ROM, there is google play, you can upgrade to miui 9..