Hands on video with new Nokia X30
So, Nokia Mobile is finally bringing some nice specs to the X series. Nokia XR20 might be even more buffed thanks to some clever hardware, but Nokia XR30 does feel like a well-rounded midrange, with some sacrifices. Our Abdulla had a chance to test Nokia X30… well an early version of the Nokia X30 with unfinalized software. He used it as his daily driver for the past 3 weeks (lucky Yt bastard), and he is pretty happy with it. Almost a dream come true, he says. Well, let me rephrase that, it feels like somebody watched his ultimate midrange video, and tried ticking as many boxes of it as possible. In the video below, check out a brief hands-on video of the Nokia X30, and 6 reasons why Abdulla loves it.
For those that prefer letters over moving pictures, here are those 6 things summed up in a nice text below.
1- VERY STYLISH DESIGN AND BUILT WITH RECYCLED YET “PREMIUM” MATERIALS.
Even though he generally prefers a symmetrical camera design on the back, Nokia X30 looks stylish to him. Nokia Mobile used the combination of an aluminium frame which makes the device feel nice and premium in the hand, and a plastic back t give it a soft satin finish. The cloudy blue version he reviewed is a proper attention grabber but I feel that the ice white version could even look better.
There are chamfered edges on almost every edge including the metallic camera bump. The X30 does not look out of place next to a device that would cost twice as much, so the design team deserves plenty of credit here. The icing on the cake though is that the aluminium used on the X30 is 100% recycled, and about 65% of all plastic pieces recycled too. So stylish, premium and sustainable all in one. Nokia Mobile did a nice job here.
2- A TOUCH OF DURABILITY
Metalic frames might catch scratches more, but they feel durable, definitely more durable than glass or ceramic. You won’t have to worry about the back plate shattering on drops, and Nokia used Gorilla Glass Victus on the front here which is also good at staying intact on drops. On top of that, the X30 also comes with IP67 water and dust resistance rating, so you won’t have to worry about it falling into the water. Nokia XR20 beats it in many areas, but its good to know that the right design decisions have been made here too.
3- ITS FAIRLY COMPACT
As devices continue to grow year after year, it is becoming really hard to find a midranger that isn’t an absolute giant. Abdulla said that Nokia X30 is a breath of fresh air here, being significantly smaller in dimensions than your average 6.7” display midranger. In fact, the X30 is even smaller than Nokia’s own 5.4 in every dimension, which had a 6.39” display. When compared with the X20 and the 8.3, Nokia X30 is a tinny device, but not as tinny as the fantastic Asus Zenfone 9.
4- PROMISING CAMERAS WITH PUREVIEW BRANDING
On paper, the Nokia X30 has all the right ingredients to become a stellar camera phone. Its main sensor is a large 1/1.56” Samsung GN5 sensor, the same sensor found on the Galaxy S22 and S22+ which do cost significantly more. The aperture ratio is set at f/1.88 and it also comes with Optical Image Stabilization and a slew of software tricks which include Dark vision, which captures images even in very dimlit situations, Capture fusion which combines between the main camera and the 13-megapixel ultra-wide camera’s picture for much better details in the center of ultra wide shots, and super portrait which enhances sharpness and details in faces.
The camera is protected by scratch-resistant Corning® Gorilla® Glass with DX+ that lets 98% of all light through the lens. Even the camera interface has received a significant design overhaul which was much needed. Abdulla shared a couple of samples he captured on prerelease software and they do look promising.
5- A VERY NICE DISPLAY
The X30 comes with a 6.43” AMOLED display, with a Full HD+ resolution, 90Hz refresh rate, and PureDisplay technology for HDR support. It’s a really nice display that doesn’t skimp out on any fancy features you might require, and Abdulla likes that the bezels all around it are fairly symmetrical. It’s a great canvas for watching content and can get to up to 700 nits of max brightness, so you shouldn’t have to worry about it being unusable under the sun.
6- A NICE BLEND OF PERFORMANCE AND BATTERY EFFICIENCY
The X30 is powered by the snapdragon 695 5G processor, clocked at 2.2 Ghz and is built on 6nm architecture. It has up to 8 gigs of RAM, and up to 256 gigs of built-in, UFS 2.2 storage. Inside is a 4200 mAh battery with a charging speed of 33 watts, and is said to be good for up to 800 recharging cycles before losing any significant chunk of its battery health.
Now when you take both the CPU and battery capacity separately, they won’t top charts by any means. There are plenty of devices that offer better performance on paper than X30, and will probably be larger and therefore fit a bigger battery capacity.
But based on Abdulla’s usage over the last few weeks, performance was stellar all around even on unfinished software. He said that X30 can handle any task you throw at it with ease, in part thanks to the lightweight stock android software experience. Battery life on the other hand, while not amazing, did manage to last Abdulla about a day and a half of usage, with about 7 hours of screen on time. Compact devices are more difficult to get right because there is less space to play around with thermals and put a large battery inside, so finding the right balance is often difficult.
Anyway, what are the shortcomings of the X30 at least on paper?
- 3.5 mm headphone jack and a micro SD card slot to expand the built in memory are missing
- choose something else if you want an ultimate gaming device for the money, or need an endurance champion
- despite the fact that the older SD690 (and even older SD660) supports 4k video recording, that feature has been removed from the SD695, so the X30 can’t record 4K video
So after reading or watching our first hands-on video of the X30, what do you guys think of this one? Abdulla thinks that Nokia Mobile nailed it despite the minor complaints here and there.
I must say that this shouldn’t be perceived as a successor of the Nokia 8.3 5G and that we still need to wait for that one. The X30 slots above last year’s X20 (not as its successor) and somewhere below the 8.3. Also, I’d love to see a more powerful selfie camera and wireless charging with a reverse charging option included for the new Nokia Clarity 2 Pro earbuds. After all, Nokia X30 is a stylish, compact, premium-looking, camera-centric device and to many, it is going to be a proper Nokia midranger that they have been waiting for.