Before writing the Tecno Camon C8 review, a couple of things ran through my mind. The truth is that, this year, 2015 has been much of an exciting year for Tecno, we are beginning to see gradual improvements that really makes sense.
One can argue that because the mobile market in Nigeria has become overcrowded, Tecno literally had no choice. I would share in that school of thought, afterall, competition is a phenomenon that creates quality products for users.
If you have been an avid reader, you would agree that I have been totally critical about Tecno’s mobile strategy in Nigeria. The initial mass production of down-market smartphones was really an overbearing annoyance and I couldn’t help but vent my frustration with my text editor.
However, something changed; it started with the Tecno Boom J7. I took a break, watched the biggest mobile manufacturer in Africa drop its bad omen and put on the armour of quality.
It’s the first time I will say something nice about Tecno, and that’s because they have done a pretty good job with the Camon C8. Ever since the phablet arrived in our test lab, I had no doubt that the Chinese OEM was finally on a path to regain its lost glory.
Tecno Camon C8 is an all round performer with excellent battery capacity. One thing that struck me is the unbelievable cheap price tag. The phablet comes with good specs, it fits every definition of a powerful device, and it puts to end years of complaints surrounding Tecno’s mediocre camera department.
Tecno Camon C8 is a dedicated camera phablet with a decent amount of photographic quality that will really impress camera lovers who can’t afford a Canon digital camera.
Without talking too much, let’s delve into the Tecno Camon C8 review.
Tecno Camon C8 Review – Digging Deep
Design & Display
Tecno Camon C8 is a slightly curved device with thin bezels around the display. The device is designed with leather back and has a sliver frame at the sides. At a first glance, you would automatically conclude that it’s a metal frame; we carried out a test which proved it to be plastic, however.
Looking at the 5.5-inch display, one of the things I quickly discovered was the front-facing LED flash. The home button and softkeys are located just below the display. They are revealed with a backlit. I also noticed something cool, when there is a notification, the home button lights up.
On the right edge of the Camon C8 are the power button and a dedicated shutter button that enters camera mode without navigating through the GUI. Looking at the left edge of the device are the volume controls. The 3.5mm earphone jack is located at the top and the USB/charging port can spotted at the bottom.
A non-removable 3,000mAh battery is revealed when you detach the leather back cover from the device. Tecno does score some extra points for resisting the temptation to use a cheap plastic, that’s one design concept that gives the device a premium build.
Camon C8 is a dual SIM device. You have the option to use either a micro SIM or a normal SIM. There is also microSD support for expandability options.
Just at the back, top center of the smartphone, you will instantly notice the 13MP primary shooter with dual LED flash.
Tecno Camon C8 is equipped with a quad-core Mediatek MT6735 64-bit chipset. The Mali-T720 and 1 GB RAM ensures the device is capable of handling graphic intensive games and perform multi-tasking without lag.
Tecno Camon C8 Specs
- 5.5-inch 720 x 1280 Display
- Quad-core Mediatek MT6735 (64-bit) processor
- 1 GB RAM
- 32 GB Internal storage (MicroSD support)
- 13 Megapixel, dual LED flash
- 5 megapixel front camera
- Android 5.0 Lollipop
- 3,000mAh battery
Software & Performance
Tecno Camon C8 runs on a custom Android 5.0 Lollipop 64-bit OS. The UX is intuitive; it can be easily customized by users to fit their preferences.
Navigating though the UX will leave you breathless with the enormous amount of apps that has been pre-installed; you won’t have to waste your data downloading common apps. I pushed the device to determine its strength, played some games and left an enormous amount of apps opened, I didn’t notice any lag and that brings us back to the issue of RAM size.
The 1 GB RAM is complimented with a 64-bit chipset available on the device. 64-bit chipsets are technically more powerful, faster and efficient than 32-bit processors. So, it literary reduces the dependency on the RAM. This could be the reason why Tecno opted for 1 GB RAM instead of 2 GB. Howebit the case, they will have a hard task telling an ordinary guy on the street that a 64-chipset was the reason they didn’t slam their flagship device with 2 GB RAM. Uhmmm.
From the 16 GB internal memory available, Android takes a whooping 5 GB leaving a paltry 10 GB for users. Unlike Samsung’s new mobile strategy that strips off microSD slots, you can easily expand the Camon C8 to get more storage space.
There are a couple of in-house apps on the Camon C8; the Boom Player got my attention, however. The Boom Player is a first-party music player that really makes your music library come alive. Outside that, it improves the quality of music. I did get some distortion when on the highest level, and the location of speakers looks like a down-side. You will have to face down the device to get the most out of the speaker because it is positioned at the back.
Tecno Camon C8 Camera
Tecno Camon C8 is built with camera lovers in mind. The name of the device has a camera shutter icon that distinctively creates a camera mindset for anyone looking at it for the first time.
The Boom J7 was a dedicated music phone which had a great reception. There is no doubt a camera centric device as the Camon C8 will get similar treatment. The is the first time Tecno is putting in a whole of effort into making its camera outdo its competitors, fans have shown their frustration in the past, and it appears the Camon C8 finally lays the issue to rest.
The device has a 13 megapixel camera with dual LED flash, Tecno says the device can produce powerful night shots which it did comfortably, but it’s not the best out there.
Here are some unedited images taken with the Camon C8 below;
There are tons of settings that make the Camera fun to use. There is the gesture and voice capture control which I love on the LG G4, but I couldn’t get the later to work on the Camon C8. There are no manual options like what’s available on high end smartphones, the ISO, shutter speed, focus, white balance and other options can’t be changed. They set themselves based on the lighting condition. The option to save RAW images isn’t also available on the Camon C8. For a normal guy who needs to take shot in a pool party, the Camon Camera will get the job done, but if you are professional photographer, this isn’t an alternative if you want to get your hands dirty.
Here are some Tecno Camon C8 camera mode screenshots;
On normal daylight, the Camon C8 does shot impressive images with great composition, I did notice a little bit of noise however. Judging by the price of the device, it would be unfair to rant over such issues.
I got a handful of enquiry from tech savvy guys who wanted to confirm if the front-facing camera had LED flash by any chance. The Camon C8 does come with a selfie LED flash, but I am not a fan of selfies, I didn’t equally like the LED flash because it caused irritation on my eyes when shooting. This is a personal experience; the rest members of the team at our test lab couldn’t hide their excitement over the feature. Since every one of them like it except me, I believe it would be one of Tecno’s selling points.
One would have expected the battery to be rated at 4000mAh, but the Tecno Camon 3000mAh battery capacity still provides long lasting hours.
The reason of this is because the customized OS has been tweaked to be efficient. Again, the 64-bit chipset used on the device ensures optimal performance with minimum battery consumption.
Beautiful design, leather texture back cover, 13 MP primary camera. Perfect phone for the money!
1 GB RAM, thick bezels at the top and bottom of the device.
Should I Buy it
I took the Camon C8 to see a friend, he was shocked and asked in dismay; “when did you start “holding” Tecno phone?” I smiled and told him Tecno has re-discovered itself. Hehe..
The device does look bulky, but it is light at the same time and guarantees a firm grip. I really don’t like the thick bezel on top and button of the Camon C8, the thin bezel at the edge are cool but it could have been more.
Internal specs are solid; gaming is fluid, responsive and fast. There was no lag experienced though out the time the device was diagnosed at our test lab.
The biggest selling point is the cheap price tag of only N26,000. Tecno understands the market in Nigeria, a quality phone with the right price will sell like hot cakes. Needless to say why Infinix Zero 2 has been having poor sales? It all boils down to pricing, Infinix didn’t carry out proper market research before releasing the Zero 2 and the effect has been felt.
At this point, I can authoritatively say that the Tecno Camon C8 is a device that lived up to its hype. I love the leather back, the 13MP camera and the UX. It has everything you will want for a budget device. I equally love the camera, it’s the best camera device Tecno has ever produced and its definitely worth every penny you would spend to own one of it.
Thanks for reading our Tecno Camon C8 Review, we would like to hear your thoughts.
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