CloudFone Thrill Access Review - Style And Substance!

More than a month ago, we unboxed the CloudFone Thrill Access, a sub PHP 5K handset that initially impressed us on how good it looks and its good number of useful features that's uncommon on a budget device.
CloudFone Thrill Access Review - Style And Substance!
CloudFone Thrill Access review!

After fully testing it, here's the rest of what we found out. Check if this device is the one for you.

For the review part 1: CloudFone Thrill Access Unboxing And First Impressions - Exquisitely Good?

Display Quality

5 points of touch present!
5 points of touch present!

Sporting a 5 inch IPS screen with HD 1280 x 720 resolution, the display of CloudFone's Thrill Access looks average for its class on paper. However, it performed better than expected. While its sharpness is average at 294 pixels per inch, the colors has some good amount of pop and warmth that's pleasing to the eyes. There are plenty of colors and it's far from washed.
Colors aren't as saturated as AMOLED panels, but there's still some pop that won't disappoint.
Viewing angles are also decent and it go bright enough to be legible enough even under direct sunlight hit for outdoor use. Then it has the standard 5 points of touch for easy swiping, typing, and gaming.

Audio Quality

Speaker placement behind
Speaker placement behind

At the back, the Thrill Access has a single speaker with average tunes. It's loud and quite detailed with pretty clear vocals, but don't expect it compete with higher-end phones. It would also have been better if they just placed the speaker below instead of putting it behind to prevent the flat surfaces from blocking off the tunes. But hey, at PHP 5K, we cannot really complain that much.

On its headphone audio output, it isn't HiFi, but it isn't bad as well. It sounded actually decent with warm sound signature that fans of soothing bassy music will appreciate. Mids sounded fine (close to full) with above-average clarity at this price, highs is present when needed (though not that prominent), and can produce proper separation (just don't expect it to be super detailed).

Microphone for calls is good too and clear on quiet environments. For video recordings, we're surprised that it can capture micro details, but there's just no noise cancelling. Still decent.

Battery Life

10 hours and 49 mins at PC Mark's work battery life test
10 hours and 49 mins at PC Mark's work battery life test

For a phone with only 2,500 mAh of battery, CloudFone proved once more that they know how to do proper optimization. As a result, the Thrill Access clocked a score of over almost 11 hours in our PC Mark battery test. That's at least 4 hours better than most phones with the same battery capacity.
Battery life is great!
In real life situation, we were able to squeeze 8 hours and 30 mins of screen-on time while doing basic smartphone task such as casual photography, telephony, gaming, and music. Charging time is roughly around 2 hours and 30 mins.

Camera

The main camera behind
The main camera behind

Packing an 8 MP f/2.0 Omnivision and sensor w/ AF and LED flash at the back and a 5 MP f/2.4 Omnivision selfie camera w/ wide angle lens and LED flash in front, the Thrill Access looks average on paper again. However, it has some special traits that you'll surely appreciate for a phone this affordable.
Manual camera controls, present!
Manual camera controls, present!

Unlike most budget phones, the Thrill Access loads with a camera software with lots of useful features. There'a the usual HDR, panorama, and face beauty mode but CloudFone made sure that there's more. It has sports mode to capture moving objects and pro camera mode with saturation, white balance, ISO, sharpness, and exposure adjustments. It's also complete with a nice type of grid and metering for easy exposure adjustment.

Shooting speed is also average with less than second shutter and a second in shooting time. Auto-focus isn't the fastest, but i'll be just fine in daylight. In the dark and super close macros at around 4 inches near, expect some struggles.

For the quality of its cam, you won't have problems for casual snaps on well lit places. It has a slightly darker tone than usual so it preserves more details and shoots photos with average dynamic range. In places with no natural lighting (or darker than usual spots), the obvious struggles are visible as it tends to show slight yellowish tones, softness, and some grains.

To achieve best results, use HDR (shooting speed of around 3 seconds) in against the light situations (enhances and brightens your snaps) or use the pro mode for manual adjustments and metering. Using its bright single LED flash is also an option.

Rear Camera Samples

Daylight snap in auto mode
Daylight snap in auto mode
Normal mode (darker) vs HDR (brighter and more detailed)
Normal mode (darker) vs HDR (brighter and more detailed)
There's plenty of grains here, but still acceptable
There's plenty of grains here, but still acceptable
Dim light snap showing impressive details for a budget device
Dim light snap showing impressive details for a budget device
Random photo at night, struggled in shooting in dark places
Random photo at night, struggled in shooting in dark places

For selfies, it has an adjustable face beauty mode where you can play with the size of your eyes, smoothness of your skin, and etc. However, just like most budget phones, it doesn't have autofocus and it isn't a speedy shooter. On the brighter side of things, it has a strong type of LED flash in front that can be used in the dark.

For its quality, the 5 MP f/2.4 front cam of the Thrill Access is an enjoyable selfie shooter in places with proper lighting. It's punchy enough and far from soft looking. If you're with friends, you'll enjoy its wide angle lens as it can fit up to 5 people in a single frame.

Selfie Camera Samples

Selfie in daylight, beautify mode
Selfie in daylight, beautify mode
Groufie test, check how wide it is!
Groufie test, check how wide it is!
It struggles in low-light, but still acceptable
It struggles in low-light, but still acceptable
In very dark places, use the flash!
In very dark places, use the flash!

For videos, the Thrill Access shoots up to 1080p videos at the back and 720p in front. The quality is acceptable, it focuses on subjects quickly, but you should have some steady hands. In front, the quality is about the same, it is also a clear step-up over the 480p quality of the Thrill Plus.


Video Samples


Performance

Antutu and Geekbench score
Antutu and Geekbench score

Packed with a 64 Bit MT6735 quad core chip paired with Mali T720 GPU and 2 GB of RAM, the the Thrill Access performed in an average way at this price point. It is speedy for casual usage and some heavy task, but not as snappy compared with other phones with faster MT6753 octa core chips. In multitasking, it can handle several apps without struggle unless you there's too many things happening in the background.
Hiccups are rare unless, you are a heavy 3D gamer.
It still loads NBA 2K17 on mostly low settings nicely though. It also has enough room for storage due to its 16 GB of ROM that's expandable via micro SD card slot up to 64 GB. In my experience, it's recognized my class 10 micro SD card properly where it can be used to store photos and etc.

Checking its skin, it's very much like the Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS of Thrill Plus and Next where there's no app drawer anymore. The result, it is easier to locate and arrange your apps the way you like it. Then there's the usual double tap to wake, gestures, and programmable fingerprint control. By the way, the fingerprint reader it is using is very snappy and can be used for creating app shortcuts.

Then its GSM signals are mostly strong that made it great for doing calls and SMS anywhere. On blind spots, it'll struggle, but that's normal. Other connectivity options like WiFi, 3G, LTE, GPS, and Bluetooth also worked.

Pros - Build quality, design, display, lte connectivity, accurate fingerprint scanner
Cons - Speaker placement behind, no gyroscope

Verdict

The CloudFone Thrill Access has the proper balance between style and substance. Yes, we acknowledge that there are other phones with faster processor and better gaming ability at this range, but few of them can match this in style and features. Even up to this date, this device is a safe phone to get in the sub PHP 5K range.

GIZ Rating: 4/5 Stars
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