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Cherry Mobile Flare S6 Plus Review - Quad Cameras in Style

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After using the new Cherry Mobile Flare S6 Plus for more than two weeks, here's our full review! Is it the new affordable quad camera phone in style to get?
Cherry Mobile Flare S6 Plus Review - Quad Cameras in Style
Full review time!


Let's find out!

Display Quality

Cherry's TrueView screen
Cherry's TrueView screen

The Flare S6 Plus is one of the very few equipped with the trendy 18:9 screen aspect ratio. It has a 5.7-inch screen with HD+ 1440 x 720 resolution at 289 pixels per inch. Cherry dubbed their own 18:9 screen as the "TrueView" display.

In terms of quality, it doesn't have the sharpest display around. But, it is detailed enough. Colors are close to accurate with good contrasts. Just don't expect it to be as saturated as AMOLED screens.

Viewing angles are also wide and has good enough brightness. Sunlight legibility is quite okay, but isn't that great under direct sunlight hit.

On the display settings, you may manually set the picture quality mode to standard, vivid, and user mode under the MiraVision feature. It also has a bluelight filter to prevent eye strain when you are using the phone in the dark.

The display that Cherry used also has 5 points of touch.

Audio Quality

This handset is equipped with a single loudspeaker below. It sounds clean (forgiveable distortion on max loudness) with enough details. As usual, bass are tiny on mid-range smartphones. Soundstage is far from wide as well. Unfortuantely, this loudspeaker is also not loud at all.

Fortunately, headphone audio output is one of the best for the price! It is also one of the few to loud with a mid-range grade Cirrus CS43L36-CWZR HiFi DAC for smartphones!

The sound coming from our favorite headphones are crisp and has better detail separation versus other affordable smartphones. Bass response are well emphasized too. It was able to make most of my headphone gears shine.

You may also use the FREE HiFi grade VeMonks Plus included inside the package. It is one of the best sounding earbuds under PHP 2K right now.

In addition, it has one of the loudest output from any smartphone we tested yet. It's the only smartphone that made our UiiSii HA905 IEM with dual drivers sing loud enough at 50 percent volume.

Headphone audio output are loud and detailed!

Note: Do not crank the volume all the way up to 70 to 100 percent on easy to driver earphones. It could sound so loud.

The Flare S6 Plus can also play higher bitrate lossless audio files using Foobar2000 app for mobile.

The microphone for calls is average in quality. For video recordings, microphone quality is stereo grade. It is surprisingly detailed and loud as well.

Battery

Average battery score
Average battery score

Cherry equipped the Flare S6 Plus with 3,000mAh of battery. In our test, it clocked almost 7 hours and 30 minutes of work battery life. That score is decent. However, it is clearly lower than what 10 hour score of the regular Flare S6.

In real life usage, it lasted for a bit more than 8 hours. Our daily tasks includes WiFi or LTE data all day, taking photos, playing some videos and games, and the usual call and text.

The phone's Cherry OS also has three types of power saving modes to choose from. Our favorite is the "Smart power saving" which adapts the CPU and GPU according to usage. It also has the "Regular power saving" for games and "Ultra power saving" to only activate the dialer and messages.

It has no support for fast charging though. It took us almost 3 hours and 30 minutes to fully charge the phone using the stock 1.5A charger.

Camera

Dual cam at the back

The most intriguing feature of this handset are its cameras. It is one of the very few with real quad cameras! As a matter of fact, this is the only smartphone that we know that has quad cameras under PHP 10K yet.
The camera UI
The camera UI

At the back, it highlights a dual camera setup made and tuned by Samsung. In particular, it comes with a 16MP S5K3P3 + 5MP f/2.0 w/ AF and quad LED flash behind.

It also goes phone's improved Cherry camera has plenty of modes to choose from. It has the auto HDR, different filters, panorama, beauty, face cute, bokeh, and pro mode.

The beauty mode can detect your age and filter your skin and even enlarge your eyes. The face cute feature is a personal favorite. It adds Snapchat like cool effects and animations on your face. It works for up 10 seconds 480p videos too.

The bokeh mode will allow you to digitally adjust the aperture opening from f/1.0 to f/16 in a circular way. On the other hand, the its pro mode has white balance, ISO, exposure, saturation, contrast, and brightness adjustments. However, it has no shutter speed and manual focus. Fortuantly, it has grids for guides.

Anyway, camera quality is actually great for the price. It is one of Cherry's finest in terms of camera output yet.

Shooting speed is quick, shooting on HDR mode is less just than a second, and focus speed is fast enough. Doing close-up shots on subjects around 4 to 3 inches near is also possible. Just expect its focus time to be slower than usual.

Picture quality are also sharp and detailed on daylight shots. Color accuracy is fine if you won't use the HDR mode for taking indoor shots. Indoor shots are mostly decent, but it is grainer and doesn't have the proper white balance if you turn the HDR mode on.

For bokeh, it is hit or miss. But, mostly miss. There are few occassions where it'll get the background blur right, but most of the time, you'll see that it is just an artificial radial blur.

Lowlight performance is alright. Not great, but decent. Use HDR mode on lowlight to shoot images with lesser noise in lowlight. The quad flash it has is strong and useful when needed.

However, its dual cam implementation is a bit weird. The 5MP secondary camera has close to no use at all. It will only shoot photos with "zoomed" like effect as it has narrower field of view. It is noticably grainier and less detailed than the primary 16MP shooter.

Avoid using the 5MP zoom camera as possible. Hopfully, Cherry Mobile can improve its performance thru an OTA update.

Rear Camera Samples

Auto daylight
Auto daylight
Indoor daylight
Indoor daylight
Bokeh mode f/4.0
Bokeh mode f/4.0
Indoor dim
Indoor dim
Night shot
Night shot
Flash test
Flash test

In front, it has the same 16MP S5K3P3 + 5MP f/2.0 dual cameras. But this time, it only has a single LED flash. It still goes with auto HDR option, adjustable face beauty, cool face cute mode, and portrait mode for bokeh. In the portrait mode, you can adjust the level of blur and beautificaiton according to your preference.

Quality is about the same with the main camera. It has plenty of details and balanced colors. Like the main camera, it isn't just as saturated versus other higher-end smartphones.

Selfie Camera Samples

Nice selfie
Nice selfie
Decent portrat selfie
Decent portrat selfie
Face cute mode
Face cute mode
Selfie flash
Selfie flash

For videos, the Flare S6 Plus can shoot up 1080p at 30 fps at the back. For selfies, I find it weird that it can only take up to 480p at 30 fps even if it has the same cameras at the back. I hope that Cherry will update its software soon to make it support up to 1080p in front as well.

Anyway, it has it has slowmotion mode, beauty video, and time-lapse. We also mentioned earlier that you can take snapchat like videos with face cute effects up to 10 seconds.

Video image quality is decent in at the back and in front. It even has good colors and nice contrast, but expect it to be shaky without a stabilizer, tripod, or steady hands since it has OIS or EIS.

Video Samples


Performance

Monster scores!
Decent scores!

The Flare S6 Plus arrived with one of the better specs for the price. It has the 64-bit MT6750T octa-core processor paired with Mali-T860MP2 graphics inside. Personally, it would have been better if Cherry used the Helip P20 or Snapdragon 450 instead, but its overall specs is still considered as decent since it has large 4GB RAM and 64GB expandable storage.

Performance is alright, but not spectacular. It loads most of the social media apps with ease and can multitask properly. We also like how snappy the phone feels when switching from an app to another. Most of the UI transitions are quite good as well.

Casual gaming is also possible on this phone. It was able to run some of the heavy graphics games on low or medium settings.

It heats up a little (tolerable heat) when running heavy games and turn on the 4G LTE connectivity at the same time.
CherryOS

As expected, the CherryOS is clean and easy to use. It is also rich in features and has several optimization tools that can keep your phone snappy always. I also like that it has a one button speedup, themes, cool wallpapers, app cloning, and the super share (works like SHAREit).

However, like other Cherry Flare S6 devices with CherryOS, it is still far from perfect. For now, it isn't just as customizable as I would have liked it to be, has several unremovable bloats, and still has pop-up ads.

Fortunately, Cherry Mobile confirmed that the Flare S6 series will be updated to Android 8.0 Oreo soon.


At the back, it has a fingerprint reader. It is decent in performance, but it isn't the snappiest around. Signal quality is the surprise here, WiFi and 700MHz LTE signal are strong and stable. Even Bluetooth and GPS works fine. It also has gyroscope and OTG.

Pros - Metal clad build, sleek design, 18:9 screen, large RAM, big storage, good cameras, strong signal reception, loud and great audio headphone output
Cons - Battery charging time could be faster, secondary 5MP camera has no use for now, tinny speaker, pop-up ads


Verdict

The Flare S6 Plus is the most refined Cherry Mobile smartphone yet! It has premium build, 18:9 screen, capable specs, and good performing cameras. It also has the loudest headphone audio output from any smartphone we tested. This device is a solid offering that you cannot underestimate.

Build / Design - 4.25
Display - 4
Audio - 4.25
Battery - 4
Camera - 4.25
Performance - 4
Average - 4.125 / 5
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