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Vivo V23e Review: Good Selfies at a Premium Price

Pros

  • Good design
  • AMOLED panel
  • 44W fast charging
  • Decent main camera
  • Good selfie camera

Cons

  • Chipset is not powerful enough
  • No high refresh rate display
  • No 4K video recording

Vivo has not launched its flagship phone or even a mid-tier flagship phone in Nepal for quite a while. And the trend continues with the late launch of the vivo V23e.

vivo v23e review
vivo v23e

Vivo V23e price in Nepal is Rs. 44,999 for the 8/128GB variant and Rs. 49,999 for the 8/256GB variant. It is the lite version of the vivo V23 and vivo V23 Pro.

Is vivo V23e the camera phone you should buy? I’ll tell you all about it in this review article of vivo V23e.

Vivo V23e Specifications

  • Body: 160.9 x 74.3 x 7.36 mm (Moonlight Shadow), 160.9 x 74.3 x 7.41 mm (Sunshine Coast), Glass back, 172 g, Hybrid Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
  • Display: 6.44 inches FHD+ AMOLED, 60Hz, 1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9
  • Chipset: Mediatek Helio G96 (12 nm)
  • CPU: Octa-core (2×2.05 GHz Cortex-A76 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • GPU: Mali-G57 MC2
  • Memory: 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM, expandable via microSD card (uses shared SIM slot)
  • OS: Android 11, Funtouch 12
  • Rear Camera: 64MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), PDAF
    • 8MP, f/2.2, 120˚, 16mm (ultrawide), 1/4.0″, 1.12µm
    • 2 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
    • Video: [email protected], gyro-EIS
  • Front Camera: 50 MP, f/2.0, (wide), AF
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 4050 mAh battery, Fast charging 44W
  • USB: USB Type-C, USB On-The-Go
  • Misc: Fingerprint (under display, optical), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
  • Colors: Moonlight Shadow, Sunshine Coast

Vivo V23e Price in Nepal: Rs. 44,999 (8/128GB) | 49,999 (8/256GB)

Vivo V23e Review

Premium Design

  • 160.9 x 74.3 x 7.36 mm
  • 172g
  • Hybrid Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
vivo v23e review
Design

Vivo V23e is a slick-looking phone with a reflective glass panel on the rear. The one we received is the Moonlight Shadow color variant that is very reflective and retains fingerprints quite easily.

While the design of the phone is quite similar to previous V-series smartphones, the phone is very light at just 172 g and is only 7.36mm thick.

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On the front, it still uses a drop notch which makes the phone look a bit ugly. The side bezels and the chin also haven’t quite improved from the last year’s phone. It also houses an in-display optical fingerprint sensor which works really well.

V23e is a light and thin phone with a premium glass back panel.

For ports and buttons, the volume and power buttons are on the right side. On the bottom, we get a hybrid sim slot, mic, USB-Type C port, and a speaker. Talking about the speaker, it is loud but I’m not satisfied with its clarity and quality.

Vivo V23e is a well-designed phone but it lacks any kind of water resistance which is easily available at this price range.

No High Refresh Rate Display

  • 6.44 inches AMOLED
  • 60Hz
  • 1080 x 2400 pixels
vivo v23e review
Display

With the current market trend, we not only expect an AMOLED panel at this price tag, we expect a good AMOLED panel with a high refresh rate. On that front, vivo has delivered a good AMOLED panel but it misses out on the high refresh rate option once again.

The 6.44 inches AMOLED panel is more than bright enough as I had no problems using it under direct sunlight. It is not the best AMOLED panel in the segment though. You can easily get better AMOLED panels from Samsung and Xiaomi.

Along with bright and saturated colors, this AMOLED panel has good viewing angles as well.

The AMOLED panel supports Widevine L1 which enables FHD playback in Netflix. I enjoyed watching content on this device but the whole experience falls flat with the normal 60Hz refresh rate.

Good Selfie Camera

  • Rear Camera: 64MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), PDAF
    • 8MP, f/2.2, 120˚, 16mm (ultrawide), 1/4.0″, 1.12µm
    • 2 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
    • Video: [email protected]
  • Front Camera: 50 MP, f/2.0, (wide), AF
vivo v23e review
Camera

V23e gets a 64MP main sensor, 8MP Ultrawide sensor, and a 2MP depth sensor. On the front, it has a 50MP sensor for selfies.

FRONT CAMERA

Vivo has put a lot of emphasis on the front camera for the V23e. The 50MP shooter can shoot high-quality photos with good details and vibrant colors. Not just that, it seems to have very good focus due to the eye-autofocus feature.

With the eye-autofocus feature, the V23e can track our eyes and use it to focus the subject. This results in good selfies with very good sharpness and good dynamic range. The front camera also does a good job of controlling the highlights to maintain balanced exposure.

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Moving on to selfie portraits, vivo tends to go overboard with its beautification but the background blur and subject separation are above average. I like the portrait selfies captured from the vivo V23e.

NORMAL PHOTOS

The photos from the main sensor also have good colors with a slight hint of saturation. The photos have good details and the sharpness is also on-point. V23e also does a good job of exposing the shots, the photos are properly exposed but sometimes the photos may look slighlty overexposed.

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You can also capture high-resolution 50MP photos from the main camera. The high res photos have more detail but the contrast and exposure are not as good as normal photos.s

LOW LIGHT PHOTOS

The V23e does pretty well in low-light conditions. The photos turn out decent even without night mode. The night mode helps to bring more details but it can create a weird effect of some light sources.

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ULTRAWIDE PHOTOS

The ultrawide camera of the V23e is not as good as the main camera. The ultrawide photos lack detail as you can notice noise in daylight situations.

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The ultrawide FOV is good and the distortion correction has been applied quite well. For the price, I expect a better ultrawide camera than this one.

MACRO & PORTRAIT PHOTOS

The 2MP macro camera can only do so much. The macro photos lack detail but the color reproduction is fine.

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As for the portraits, the edge detection and background blur are quite nice. If you adjust the background blur to hit the sweet spot, you can get some good portraits from the V23e.

VIDEOS

Talking about the video capability, I’m disappointed with the fact that V23e cannot do 4K videos. It can capture videos only up to 1080p 60fps.

The 1080p 30fps videos look decent with average detail and sharpness. You can still notice noise in daylight conditions but the dynamic range is decent.

As for stabilization, it is not enabled by default. The stabilized video footages have good stabilization but the videos are slighlty cropped.

Likewise, the front camera can also capture up to 1080p 30fps. The selfie videos look sharp with a good dynamic range. The ‘steadiface’ feature does a good job of stabilizing the footage but it crops the video to achieve the stabilization.

EXTRA CAMERA FEATURES

The V23e has a lot of camera features like double exposure which is basically an effect. Furthermore, the eye autofocus feature tracks the eye and focuses on the eye for perfect focus.

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In terms of videos, it has a dual view feature which basically captures from both front and rear camera simultaneously. However, the dual view videos are captured at 13fps or 16fps which makes the footage laggy. So, it is not really usable.

Underwhelming Performance

  • Mediatek Helio G96 (12 nm)
  • Octa-core (2×2.05 GHz Cortex-A76 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • Mali-G57 MC2
  • 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM

The vivo V23e is powered by the MediaTek Helio G96 chipset along with 8GB RAM and 128/256GB internal storage.

While the Helio G96 might seem like an upgrade from the G95 interms of the naming convention, it is not. The G95 and G96 use the same CPU with 2X 2.05 GHz Cortex-A76 cores and 6X 2.0 GHz Cortex-A55 cores. But, the Helio G95 uses a better Mali-G76 3EEMC4 GPU compared to G96’s Mali G57 MC2 GPU.

With technical details out of the way, I can say that the V23e is a good performer when it comes to basic tasks like navigation, app opening, and app switching. And it can also play games but at this price tag, we expect a better chipset.

COD Mobile

For gaming, we tested COD Mobile and PUBG Mobile. COD Mobile can be played up to Medium graphics and High fps settings. In this setting, we were getting an average fps of 58.6 fps. The game ran smoothly without any stutters but we did notice some frame drops.

PUBG Mobile

As for PUBG Mobile, you can play up to HD graphics and High fps settings but you have to play at Smooth graphics for the Ultra fps option. At the highest graphics option, we were getting average fps of 29.7 with zero stutters and negligible frame drops.

Excellent Battery Life

  • Non-removable Li-Po 4050mAh battery
  • 44W fast charging

The vivo V23e is powered by a 4050mAh battery and comes with a 44W fast charger.

The battery life of V23e is pretty impressive as it can provide 7-8 hours of screen-on time with an hour of gaming. On average, the V23e will last for more than a day easily. The 44W flash charging is also impressive as it can charge the phone from 0 to 100% in just 70 mins.

Software

  • Android 11
  • Funtouch OS 12
vivo V23e review
Funtouch OS

For OS, V23e comes with a Funtouch OS 12 on top of Android 11.

The experience is similar to previous vivo phones. Vivo has not loaded V23e with plenty of bloatware. As for new features, it now has better widgets for weather, Spotify, and more. You can also add stickers on your home screen just like real sticky notes and the multi-tasker has also been improved.

Should You Buy Vivo V23e?

The vivo V23e is a camera-focused phone with a good design like most of the V-series phones.

It is a well-designed phone but vivo could have included water-resistance as well. Moving on, it doesn’t have a high refresh rate panel which is a must these days. For a camera phone, V23e has a good selfie camera but the rear camera setup is just average at this price tag. Furthermore, it doesn’t have a 4k video recording option.

Overall, vivo V23e is an overpriced device that lacks power and a high refresh rate display. You can get much better devices from the likes of Samsung, Xiaomi, and Realme at this price tag.

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What do you think about the vivo V23e? If you have any questions please let me know in the comments!


Also, watch our impressions of the Redmi Note 11 in Nepali.


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