Karbonn S5 Titanium Review

Karbonn S5 Titanium Review



In the competition of Quad Core smartphones with better hardware and durable devices, Karbonn is the only one who stands with Micromax in the competition in India. Recently Micromax has provided us few budget and durable Quad Core smartphones such as Canvas 2 or Canvas HD, there is no other manufacturer except Karbonn I think who can compete with them as they have shown their capability with few smartphone launched recently under their Titanium series. Now Karbonn has provided a strong competitor to those devices with the launch of Titanium S5. Infact with the Titanium series of Smartphone the manufacturer managed to managed to make their space in the market due to its better specifications and hardware.


At the price of just Rs. 11,990/- Karbonn S5 Titanium is one of the best Phablet with large 5 inch qHD multi-touch capacitive IPS display and 1.2GHz Quad Core Processor. If we compare S5 Titanium or Micromax’s Canvas HD, these are the only two Indian manufacturers giving tough competition to bigger brands like Samsung who had covered almost half of the smartphone market. Anyways, we will try to compared Karbonn S5 Titanium with Micromax devices later, as of now lets look in the S5 deeply and see how worth the device is.


•    Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS
•    Dual SIM (GSM + GSM) with Dual Standby
•    5-inch qHD multi-touch IPS capacitive touch screen display
•    960 × 540 pixels resolution, 220 PPI
•    1.2 GHz quad-core processor
•    1GB RAM
•    8MP Auto Focus Camera with LED flash
•    2MP front-facing camera
•    3G, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth with A2DP and GPS
•    4GB internal memory (1.41GB user access), Expandable memory up to 32GB with micro SD
•    2000 mAh battery


Design, Body and keys:


The packaging of the device looks very attractive with its completely black Plastic high gloss finish packaging. Infact the device looks very similar to Galaxy S3 from the front view if kept on the table or holding in hand. However I doubt about its durability because the plastic material seems to be very weak and I don’t think anyone can do Drop test on Karbonn S5 Titanium. Hence you need to be very careful every time and prevent it from falling on the floor. Talking about its rear panel, it is made up of very weak glossy plastic material which seems to be slippery sometimes if the phone or your palm is wet. You will also need to take care of the same while removing/opening the rear cover because it requires lot of strength and wrestling. Again we need to be cautious here or you may need to buy a new rear panel.  Apart from these, I really loved the physical looks and appearance of this phablet.


At the rear side we get large 5 inch IPS display with three Capacitive buttons at the bottom of the screen and a call speaker with 2 Megapixel front facing camera at the top of the display.



On the right side of the body we have just one key that is the Power button which is also used for Screen lock.



Similarly we have just a Volume up and down key at the left of the device. There is also nothing except the MIC at the bottom.



While at the top they have placed a 3.5mm Headphone jack with MicroUSB 2.0 port which is used for charging as well as Data Transfer.



On the Rear side of the phone we get an 8 Megapixel camera with Flash and the Karbonn logo at bottom.



Under the rear panel, we get a MicroSD card Slot, with two Sim Card slots and 2000 mAh battery



Over all the design of Karbonn S5 Titanium is very good and attractive with better grip but sometimes it may be slippery.  


Screen / Display:


Now a days most of the smartphones are releasing with large displays. Similarly S5 Titanium comes with large 5-inch qHD multi-touch IPS capacitive touch screen display with resolution of 960 × 540 pixels at 220 ppi density making the display much brighter and sharp. It provides really great fun for watching movies in 16:9 Aspect Ratio, pictures or even while playing game. Because of the IPS panel the screen wont look black from any angle and offer better viewing. However it may disappoint you in sunlight or brighter environment. Though we get good viewing angles indoors, you may need to adjust the screen while using the phone outdoors to read the text properly. But I don’t think that should not be the cons of this device at such budget price of a Phablet.


Apart from this I also like the touch sensitivity of the display. During the test for a week I never faced any problem with the display touch. It is very smooth and fluid. From navigation to typing, I never had to tap anything twice



OS, Processor, RAM:


Karbonn Titanium S5 comes with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system. The hardware and configurations provided in the device seems to run Android 4.2 as well comfortably but as of now there is no announcement from the manufacturer whether S5 will ever get the update or now. But anyways, the device runs very smooth and lag-free with the optimized 4.1 Jellybean. However the Notification bar is kept very simply, just like we get in the Stock Android JellyBean. If we compare the same with few device from Micromax, they have better Notification area than S5 Titanium. You cannot even kill all notifications at once, you require to drag them one by one to empty the notification panel. But overall the user interface is very clean and looks good.



The Karbonn S5 Titanium is powered with 1.2 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 MSM8625Q processor along with 1GB of RAM which makes the phablet powerful enough for multitasking and smooth performance. As I already said above few times, I never faced a single lag or freezing accessing the device for over a week. No matter how many applications or game running in the background, the application you working at the moment on screen works fine without any problem.


Benchmark Tests:


We also ran some benchmarking tests on Karbonn S5 Titanium to find out how better the device can perform with Quad Core processor and if it is better from other smartphones.


Atutu Benchmark Results


Quadrant Benchmark Results


According to both the test results the Karbonn S5 Titanium surely seems to quiet better than several devices including Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Galaxy S2. So I can say the device is worth at the price of Rs. 12,000/-


Multimedia and Gaming:


I already said that the device appears very good for Multimedia purpose. Watching HD movies on such larger and brighter screen was a great fun. But there is a problem. When I try to play any full HD 1080p video, it starts lagging. However it plays fine if we run any video upto 720p. The built-in video player of S5 Titanium supports file formats such as  .264, H.263, 3GP, MP4 and AVI. If you have videos in any other file format apart from this than you may require to download third party video player from Google Play like MX Player. Similarly the music player is very good. With loud sound the built-in player supports all standard audio file formats including MP3, AAC, AAC+, WAV, MIDI and AMR.


You can see the video lagging when it is played in 1080p here:


And the same video works fine when it is played in 720 pixels:


As far as gaming is concerned, the device is good for running standard games like Temple Run, Manuganu, Subway Surfer, etc but it disappoints us with high end games like Gangster Rio HD or Asphalt 6. Either the display gets black and blank while playing high games or it just gives a message saying “The game is not supported with your device.”



You can see the gaming performance of Karbonn S5 Titanium in our Video review. Over all Karbonn S5 is good in multimedia unless and until you play movies upto 720p. Sound is loud and clear, you can watch a movie at home with your friends without using headphones. Built-in speaker is enough for the same.




Karbonn S5 Titanium comes with 8 Megapixel Auto Focus rear camera with LED Flash that obviously doesn’t provide the best image but you still get high quality picture with noisy image. It is capable for recording Videos at HD 720p resolution which I think is the best we can get in a budget phablet. There is also a 2 Megapixel Front Facing camera which allows you to do video calling in better quality compared to those other smartphones which appears to be black or very dark if you are sitting indoor. But the one we get with S5 titanium offers better quality video call.


Both the cameras comes with few features and enhancement settings such as you can change the aspect ratio, white balance, exposure, color effect, Redeye reduction, etc. The features includes Face Detection, Guide Line, Panorama and few more.




We get these all options with both Rear and Front cameras. Overall the cameras are capable to provide you very good quality of images but it may get bit dull when you are shooting indoor or in low light. The images get bit noisy in low light environment. We were surprised to capture the close up shots as the images were well in focus and with significant amount of detail. If I had to buy this phone, I would be happy with its camera as it fulfils the camera solution in budget price.


Built-in Apps:


The Karbonn S5 Titanium comes with several pre-loaded applications including the one Flipboard which we see mostly in branded smartphones. Apart from this the device loaded with all Google applications including Youtube, Google Plus, Google Play, Gmail, Google Search, Messenger Google Plus, Gtalk, Maps, etc. There are also several third party applications such as We-Chat, nexGTV, TOI, Flipboard, PoPi,PayTM and Kingsoft Office. All applications response time is good with the device and they work fine.


Connectivity and Storage:


The Karbonn Titanium S5 seems very good with all standard connectivity options including 3G, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth with A2DP and GPS. However in order to use 3G you need to insert the 3G sim card in SIM1 slot because SIM2 only supports 2G network. We haven’t tested 3G on this device bit WiFi works very good. The only problem I found with wifi is when the screen goes off, after a minute or 2, WiFi connection gets dropped. Which means you will not get any notifications including Facebook, WhatsApp, etc unless and until you turn on the screen again. As soon as the screen is on, wifi reconnects again automatically. I don’t know if this is any built-in setting of Karbonn S5 because I have seen such “Power Saver Mod” in HTC One X+ were once the Saver Mod is on, all data and wifi connections drops to save the battery. But I cannot find any such option or setting in this Handset. However I cannot be sure if the problem is with all S5 Titanium devices or just with the one unite that we received.


If you have better WiFi speed, streaming videos or browsing web offers very good experience. The devices comes with two built-in browsers including the one default Android browser and second is Chrome. No matter whichever browser you use, websites loads very fine and the large display allows you to read each letter comfortably.



As far as Storage is concerned, though S5 comes with 4GB built-in storage capacity, only 1.41GB is available for Users Access and rest goes to the system. However there is a memory slot under the rear cover where we can use MicroSD Card to expand the memory upto 32GB.





Running with 2000 mAh battery Karbonn S5 seems to be very good in battery performance. Once charged 100% and average user can run the device for a entire day. In my case as you can see in the image, I always keep my WiFi on and use it for browsing, facebook, WEChat and of course WhatsApp. Since I charged it last time, its been several hours and still showing 19% left. Well 19% is obviously very low but the duration showing up is still over 4 hours with WiFi On until the battery will drain completely. So a user only use 2G on this device can use the phone upto 15 to 18 hours in just one charging.




Karbonn S5 Titanium is one of the best 5 inch quad-core Phablet available in the market at Budget Price of Rs. 11,990/- with 8MP and 2Mp camera. Also the battery backup is very impressive offering battery life upto 12 hours on WiFi. It could be also the best choice if you want to gift someone a Smartphone with huge screen and very attractive (Galaxy S3) like looks. But there are some disadvantages as well with Karbonn S5 Titanium as described above about its weak plastic material packaging which doesn’t sounds durable and the incompatibility with high end games although the Benchmark results are very impressive. On the other hand if we compared Micromax Canvas HD A116 available at Rs. 13,999/- (2K costlier) it has been good in durability as well as Gaming performance as well with the same configuration as Titanium S5. Anyways, this is surely a very good beginning from the manufacturer in the Quad Core and Phablet’s competitive market.


•    Smooth performance
•    Android 4.1 JB
•    Quad Core Processor.
•    Decent 8MP and 2MP camera


•    Less durability because of weak plastic material.
•    Not compatible with high end games.
•    WiFi stability issues




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