It took the international mail way too long, but finally the Meizu M6S has found its way to my home. That was a week ago. Since then I have been using the Meizu M6S as my daily driver. In this full review I will walk you through the experience. Sure there are budget phones out there that might be two or three tenners cheaper. Sure there are phones out there with dual camera lenses. Some have bigger battery capacity or even a bigger screen, but are they better? In this In-depth hands-on Review of the Meizu M6S we’ll try to answer the question if the price of the M6S is justified and if this is a device worth buying.
DESIGN & SCREEN
The first difference between the Meizu M6S and a lot of other budget devices is no doubt the building quality. Also the materials used by Meizu are premium class and that gives the phone a great feel. The M6S has a light metal body that’s slightly brushed, so the phone is not slippery to hold. It also doesn’t attract half as much fingerprint stains and smudges than its plastic or glass competition. Everything is round and smooth and the U shaped antenna lines blends in seamlessly. The 5.7 inch display feels completely integrated since its covered in a slighty curved 2.5D glass layer. The screen itself is a 1440 x 720p. HD+ screen that reproduces great colours and deep blacks. Sure we could argue why thay didn’t put in a 1080p. resolution, but considering that we’re dealing with a budget phone here the 720p is just fine.
With a only 8mm body thickness and a weight under 160 grams the Meizu M6S doesn’t feel cheap at all. In fact the overall feel reminds me most of the iPhone 6 or 7 Plus. So I think it’s safe to say the M6S is definitely a looker and the last week many people have asked what this phone is I’m using. But looks aren’t everything now are they? So let’s see what the Meizu M6S has to offer under the hood.
Most budget devices of today will offer you a MediaTek MT6750 or MT6753 Chipset clocked anywhere between 1.3Ghz to 1.5Ghz (Cortex A53 based). These processors will sign off on the AnTuTu Benchmark with a score anywhere between 40 an 55K. Not the Meizu M6S! The M6S is featuring the brandnew Samsung Exynos 7872 chipset. This processor runs on six cores clocked at 2 x 2.0Ghz (Cortex A73) and 4 x 1.6Ghz (Cortex A53). Translated into an AnTuTu Benchmark score that means the Meizu M6S will easily get a score aroudn the 92K! And with that Meizu does not only leave the competition behind, but also scores better than devices that are around 150 tot 200 euro’s more expensive! The 3 GB of RAM are quite sufficient to multitask and the phone comes with either 32Gb or 64 GB ROM.
For graphical support the GPU is provided by the rather advanced Mali G71 chipset. This means the Meizu M6Sperforms way above average in gaming than a lot of other smartphones of the same price range. But it doesn’t stop there! Let’s talk about another great piece of hardware in the Meizu M6s: The fingerprint scanner. The M6S is the first Meizu device that said goodbye to the fingerprint scanner/ mBack button on the front. That doesn’t mean you have to give up on the fantastic “one button for everything” concept though!
The M6S sports a side mounted fingerprint scanner that unlocks the phone in 0.2 seconds. Of course I have tested it for you and I can tell you it had a 100/100 succes rate! The great thing about the side mounted fingerprint scanner is basically it’s located on the most natural logical spot. It doesn’t matter whether you have the phone in your right of left hand. it’s easy and natural to unlock this way.
Then there is the absolute easy with which you’re able to navigate through your phone! The Meizu M6S runs on Flyme OS, and this means everything can be navigated with one button. The mBack button, that in the M6S is replaced by a virual, pressure sensitive halo button. This can be used to go back by simply tapping it. If you press it it will take you home straight away. But there’s more. Press it twice and the camera application pops up and a long press and hold will turn off the screen. Now, let’s talk multitasking. Never did I own a device that could switch between open apps this easy. Just swipe left or right on the mBack button and you will move through your opened apps! Personally I was always a fan of a physical home button, but this is the next best thing.
This easy navigation thing is just one of the many perks that come with the Flyme OS (Meizu’s own UI). The Meizu M6s is packed with Android 7.1 in combination with the latest Flyme OS. Basically what that means is no stutter, no lags and no freezes. Just a very smooth running interface. No doubt this OS will give you the best user experience possible. The phone comes with many customization options and themes that will let you choose your own look. And you won’t need to download shady launchers from the Play Store that are packed with agressive advertising. The hundreds of available themes are all optimised for Meizu and run perfectly. So far it seems we have found some distinct differences between the Meizu M6S and other budget phones. Now what about the camera?
The Meizu M6S comes with a 16 megapixel camera made by Samsung on its rear. The 8 megapixel front camera is absolutely sufficient to provide you with great looking selfies. Now let’s talk about the rear camera for a while. It gives you the choice between 4:3 pictures in 16 megapixel or 16:9 ratio in 12 megapixel. There’s also an 18:9 ratio, but this will scale down to 10 megapixel. The first thing that surprised me when the M6S was announced was the fact it had “only” one rear camera. This while other brands advertise their phones to have 3 or even 4 camera lenses. However having tested many of them in the past year I think its fair to say about 80% of those lenses do nothing or close to nothing. Some are even downright fakes and do nothing at all except looking cool and trendy 😉
So I appreciate Meizu’s honesty and their respect for the customer by not lying and faking extra lenses. However having tested the rear camera on the Meizu M6S it became clear. The macro shots, and the focus in general is so on spot that foto’s turn up having a natural bokeh effect that is simply stunning! The camera comes with many options like for example there is a slow motion option and the possibillity to record time lapse video. But instead of talking about the camera: Take a look at the video review I made about the Meizu M6S. And as usual, at the end of this review I will post several different picture samples I have shot on the M6S. What’s maybe interesting to emphasize is the fact that Meizu Camera’s come with ArcSoft algorithm especially designed for Meizu. This leads to things like a fantastic low light performance.
The camera is also very capable of freezing fast moving objects without any blur. Other settings like HDR, defog and dehaze are available with just one click. The photo editing options in the Flyme OS and the M6S in specific are so complete that it won’t be nescessary to download a third party editing tool. In other words, this is a camera interface that belongs on midrangers and high end devices and you won’t find this many options on any other budget phone (including Xiaomi).
How about the battery life? Because, granted, a 3000 mAh battery doesn’t seem that spectacular on paper, especially combined with a 5.7 inch screen. Agreed, 3000 mAh seems average. Especially when other brands advertise phones with 5000+ mAh batteries. However 1. None of those phones comes with the camera quality, weight and performance of the Meizu M6S and 2. None of them comes with the very energy concious Samsung Exynos 7872 processor! Even with rather heavy use the battery will make it through most days. And if you had a game-day or a chat-day you might need to recharge. Since Meizu decided to stock the M6S with Meizu’s mCharge fast charging system (18W!!!!) the battery will be fully charged from 0 to 100% in give or take ONE HOUR! I can honestly say this is the fastest charging smartphone I have ever seen. Ultimate freedom!
So in conclusion, the Meizu M6S has everything that you usual find in higher end devices for a budget price tag below the 200 euro marker! Sure it might be a couple of tenners more expensive than the very cheapest of budget models but it return it won’t remind you for a second you’re using a budget phone. From the processor speed, multi tasking experience down to the camera sensors, everything is running smoother than smooth and looking like a milion dollars. In fact, when I first looked at the M6S I couldn’t help thinking, THIS is what the new iPhone should’ve looked like. But fortunately they didn’t come up with it and Meizu did! So even though it’s only April I do declare the Meizu M6S to be the best budget phone of 2018. I will therefore rate the M6S 9.4/10. And I definitely recommend it!