Test Honor 9 Lite: (almost) gifted smartphone seeks reason to be

Presentation

Mise updated20/05/2019 at 14:20

Attention,Google has ended its collaboration with Huawei/Honor, the software future of the brand's mobiles is on hold. We cannot advise you to invest in this mobile for the moment, its rating could be revised downwards soon.

Ne don't tell Honor that their catalog is draft. Admittedly, the manufacturer offers 5 product families that come in "Pro" and "Lite" versions, but all this is strategic. By flooding the market with products, Huawei's subsidiary is making sure to cover absolutely all possible and imaginable price ranges. The recently unveiled Honor 9 Lite is therefore one more piece of the puzzle, squatting in the €200-230 segment.

Vendu at €229 (but with an ODR of €30 for the first few months), the 9 Lite is mainly rubbing shoulders with its distant cousins, theHuawei P Smartet leP8 Lite 2017. One can also find at similar prices theZenfone 4 Max from Asus or theWiko View Primed whose price has been significantly reduced.

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Honor 9 Lite de face.

Can Honor 9 Lite bring a breath of fresh air to the €200 mobile segment? Answer here.

Ergonomics and design

DuHonor 9, the 9 Lite only inherited the name. Indeed, the mobile released last June has not much to do with this Lite model, except that they both have a glass back. And again, the glass chosen is not quite the same on the Lite version: the back of the phone is even more reflective than the one on the 9, but it still catches fingerprints. The fingerprint sensor still works very well and unlocks the phone quickly.

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mirror back of the Honor 9 Lite.

fingerprint sensor has also been moved to the back of the mobile to allow the screen to occupy as much space as possible (76%) on the front of the mobile. In fact, this Honor 9 Lite shares many more similarities with the recently tested Honoror 7X and theHuawei P Smart than with the aging Honor 9. From the 18:9 format to the thin borders, these models are almost indistinguishable from the front. And that's not to displease us: the 9 Lite is well built, well finished and exudes seriousness. In short, the €200 cell phone segment has little to reproach itself with today.

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Les jack and micro-USB ports of the Honor 9 Lite.

Si the Honor 9 Lite is not very original, it has no major ergonomic flaws. The only big black point to emphasize is the choice of a micro-USB port rather than USB-C. We would have liked to see the Chinese manufacturer finally switch to its 200 € cell phones to truly democratize this "standard". The lack of any waterproof certification also makes 9 Lite lose a few points.

Screen

Il is possible that Honor did a little more than borrow the design of theHuawei P Smart. Indeed, the results delivered by our probe show that the two mobiles have very similar screens with very similar results. The 5.65-inch slab displays the same resolution of 2,160 x 1,080 px, therefore the same rate of 427 dpi. A resolution that is more than sufficient for 95% of mobile uses.

Par Otherwise, the 9 Lite's screen displays a color temperature that is too cold (7,500 K), but by taking a look at the settings, it is possible to obtain a more acceptable screen profile. You can choose the "warm" profile, which corrects the shot with a temperature of 6,843 K and a delta E at 3.9, or push the vice to the end and adopt the configuration below for a "perfect" temperature at 6,565 K and a delta E at 3.8. In short, only the most trained eyes will be able to perceive any colorimetric drift on the 9 Lite.

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Marche to follow to reach 6,565 K.

Question readability the 9 Lite doesn't have to blush either, the contrast ratio is a very correct 1,665:1, the maximum brightness reaches 609 cd/m² and the reflectance is contained at 12%. A cocktail that will ensure the user excellent readability even in direct sunlight. Also good news is that the minimum brightness of 1.9 cd:m² will spare the retina of night-time readers.

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Les thin borders framing the screen of the Honor 9 Lite.

In use of the screen, nothing to report either. The touch delay is 99 ms and the afterglow is 15 ms. Results perfectly in the average. All in all, the Honor 9 Lite screen taps just about every point and will suit most users.

Performances

Avec the same mobile chip and the same amount of RAM as the Huawei P Smart, the Honor 9 Lite logically delivers similar performance to its cousin. No problem, navigation is fluid and the switch between apps is smooth. Unless you're juggling apps that are particularly demanding in terms of power, the 9 Lite won't fail.

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Chauffe after 10 minutes of photo + video (back and front).

9 Lite also has the advantage of very little heating, whether after long sessions of playing or photo capture. The surface temperature is never higher than 34°C. So there's nothing to hinder the use of Lite.

Sur on the video game front, the Mali-830 MP2 graphics chip doesn't work miracles. Games that are a bit greedy will have to make a few graphic concessions to run with acceptable fluidity.

Audio

La headphone output of the Honor 9 Lite has no major flaws, but is far from exceptional. The volume lacks punch and the channel separation is too messy. On the other hand, the distortion is kept very low and the dynamic range is quite wide.

The signal coming out of the loudspeaker is only concentrated on the upper part of the spectrum (without any bass), resulting in an extremely brilliant sound, bordering on the aggressive. In short, the Honor 9 Lite doesn't shine on the audio front and just does a little better than the bare minimum.

Photo

Il becomes complicated to understand what's going on at Honor/Huawei on the shutter. Released a year ago, theHuawei P8 Lite 2017 remains uncontrollable on this point, while both manufacturers have released a plethora of phones since then. Often copied, the mobile has never been equalled and it is not the Honor 9 Lite that will change the deal.

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By day, as is often the case, the mobile is doing quite well. The details are there, the textures are cleanly rendered and the colors are faithful. Just can we regret a slight lack of contrast and the appearance of grain on the corners of the shot. But apart from that, in good lighting conditions, the two back modules of the 9 Lite do a good job. The portrait mode has also made good progress in terms of subject cropping, but the bokeh is still too artificial and not progressive for a penny. The "subject pasted with Photoshop in front of a blurred background" effect is still very present.

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Malheureusement, at night, it's always the same story. The mobile fails to capture enough light to make the scene really legible. The result is a photo where darkness dominates and crushes colors and details, the presence of digital noise does not help the case.

Mais where the 9 Lite tries to stand out is on the side of its front cameras. "Ses", yes, because the mobile is equipped with two photo modules on the front as well. To make selfies in "portrait" mode easily. Unfortunately, this is not a real success. Up close, the trimming algorithm works a little less well and it will not be uncommon to see part of your face eaten by a blurred area. As for the bokeh, it is still too dense and artificial.

Autonomy

Sur on the autonomy front, if the Honor 9 Lite still doesn't do better than the 2017 P8 Lite, it's getting away with honors. On our Smartviser autonomy test, which mixes calls, streaming, standby, sending SMS, etc., the phone lasts almost 15 hours before going under the 15% mark.

In normal use, that translates into a big day and a half of endurance. If your use is a little more advanced, you will probably need to recharge the mobile during the night. Finally, it will take about 2 hours for a full recharge with the provided plug.