Vivo V17 Pro Review
Vivo has finally launched the V17 Pro in the Philippines. With its dual pop-up cameras, NEX 3-inspired design, and quadruple rear camera set up – is it a mid-range device that’s worth copping? Find out in our review.
Design and Construction
Constructed with glass, the V17 Pro looks and feels premium. Its’ design reminds us of a little of the recently launched NEX 3. The rear is missing the circular washing machine-like cameras; instead, the V17 Pro has its quad-rear setup stacked vertically. The lenses are grouped by two, with the LED flash separating them.
Upfront, we have an almost all-screen display, made possible thanks to the dual front cameras situated in a pop-up mechanism. Slim bezels surround the panel, including the chin.
As mentioned, the V17 Pro has pop-up front cameras, situated at the top. One can also find a noise-canceling microphone and a 3.5mm headphone jack located next to it.
On the right, we have the power button and the volume rocker. They’re both clicky, tactile, and easy to reach.
The left side houses a dedicated Google Assistant button.
The dual SIM tray, a dedicated microSD card slot, a USB-C port, the primary microphone, and a loudspeaker are all located at the bottom.
Apart from the premium feel, the V17 has some heft to it, which can also be attributed to the battery. The dual pop-up cameras also contribute to the thickness of it. Despite that, it does feel comfortable in the hands, all thanks to its curved backside.
Display and Multimedia
The smartphone sports a 6.44-inch Super AMOLED screen, with a resolution of 2400 x 1080. It is impressive; colors are vibrant, blacks come out deep, and the panel can get bright even under direct sunlight. There’s also no notch to hinder a user’s viewing experience. Watching movies, videos, and playing games on the V17 Pro is pretty immersive because of that.
When it comes to audio, the V17 can get loud enough for a small room. Mids are clear and present, but highs sound distorted at maximum volume, while the lows are non-existent.
OS, UI, and Apps
Android 9 Pie runs as the V17 Pro’s operating system, with Vivo’s own FunTouch OS 9 skin laid on top of it. Users will be stuck with the apps arranged on the home screen, as there’s no option to change it to a drawer-type one. For dark mode lovers, the OS also offers to change the system-wide light mode to a dark one. Navigation-wise, users may choose to have in-display keys or switch to gestures.
The V17 Pro comes equipped with 128GB of storage, expandable via microSD. A host of apps come pre-installed in the V17 Pro. Included in that are Vivo’s apps such as EasyShare, Vivo.com, VivoCloud, and there are also the usual Google apps. For third-party apps, we have Lazada, Webnovel, WPS Office, Opera, and Facebook.
A quad-camera setup resides on the rear of the V17 Pro, featuring 48MP + 8MP + 13MP + 2MP shooters. On the other hand, inside the pop-up mechanism sits a 32MP + 8MP dual-camera setup.
With the rear cameras, the photos produced have vivid and vibrant colors to them when taken under natural and ample lighting. Subject-background separation in portrait mode is a little disappointing, though, as the edge detection seems pretty sharp. With the 120-degree wide-angle lens, there’s a bit of fish-eye effect to the images, but they’re not too noticeable. The handset also has a dedicated night mode, and it results in the picture looking noisy. It’s not too good but not too bad, either.
Selfie-wise, the dual pop-up camera setup gave us pretty impressive photos. Similar to the rear shooters, the images produced by the front cameras have accurate and vivid colors. Sometimes, the details can look soft, although we think that’s a minor issue that can be overlooked. Selfies with the beauty mode still look natural and not overly-processed. Portrait-wise, it’s also similar to the rear cameras in the way that it has a weak subject-background separation and odd edge detection.
Vivo has also equipped the V17 Pro with a posture feature in its camera app. It’s a pretty fun feature that suggests poses for your selfies and group photos when you can’t think of one.
The V17 Pro can shoot videos up to 4K. There’s a sharpness to the video, and details can be seen as well. We recommend using a tripod or monopod, though, as the V17 Pro doesn’t offer video stability.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 powers up the V17 Pro, combined with an Adreno 612 GPU and 8GB of RAM. We ran the device through several benchmarks, and here are the results:
- AnTuTu – 170,027
- Geekbench 4 – 507 (Single-core), 1,619 (Multi-core)
- PCMark – 7,770 (Work 2.0)
- 3DMark – 1,092 (SSE – OpenGL ES), 1,167 (SSE – Vulkan)
- AndroBench – 497.19 MB/s (Read), 187.51 MB/s (Write)
The performance is pretty decent. Navigating around the phone and doing basic tasks such as browsing, watching videos, social media updating, and the like isn’t an issue at all. Because of the ample RAM, multi-tasking was a smooth experience as well overall. We tested out the gaming capability of the V17 Pro with Call Of Duty Mobile and Mobile Legends, and even at high settings, we didn’t experience any frame drops at all.
As for biometrics, the V17 Pro has an in-display fingerprint scanner. It works fairly accurately and has a quick response rate too. Similar to the NEX 3, the V17 Pro’s face recognition only works after three failed attempts of the fingerprint scanner.
Connectivity and Battery Life
Connectivity-wise, the V17 Pro sports all the usual features, such as 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and also has GPS, GLONASS, and Beidou. Searching locations, pinning them on the map, and booking location-based services were quite a breeze as well.
The V17 Pro possesses a 4,100mAh battery with support for 18W dual-engine fast charging. In our standard video loop test – 50% brightness, 50% volume, airplane mode, 1080p movie, earphones plugged in – the device scored 22 hours and 19 minutes. It’s a pretty good result, and it also translated to our day-to-day usage of the device.
The Vivo V17 Pro comes with a bigger battery, an improved design, a new pop-up module, and a Type-C port. However, it still retains the same screen, chipset, and software experience as the V15 Pro. Most mid-range smartphones these days have the Snapdragon 700 series as their chipset, while the V17 Pro is stuck with a Snapdragon 675. If you own a V15 Pro, there’s not much reason to upgrade to the V17 Pro aside from the cameras.
Vivo is yet to officially reveal the price of the V17 Pro, but based on online listings it could be at PHP 21,999. If that’s the case, it will face tough competition from the likes of the Huawei Nova 5T or Xiaomi Mi 9T Pro that come with flagship chipsets.
Vivo V17 Pro specs
- 6.44″ Ultra FullView Display, 2400 x 1080 FHD+ Super AMOLED, 2.5D Glass
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 675AIE
- FunTouch OS 9.1 (Android 9 Pie)
- 8GB RAM
- 128GB storage
- Expandable via microSD
- 48MP + 8MP + 13MP + 2MP quad-rear cameras
- 32MP + 8MP dual pop-up cameras
- 4G LTE
- Bluetooth 5.0
- 3.5mm headphone jack
- 4,100mAh battery life with 18W dual-engine fast charging
- 159.00 × 74.70 × 9.80 mm
- Midnight Ocean, Glacier Ice
What we liked:
- Good battery life
- Natural-looking selfies
- Rear cameras image quality
- USB-C port
What we didn’t:
- SD675 chipset
- Same software experience as V15 Pro
- Steep price for a mid-range phone
- Edge detection in portrait photos
Upon checking, the 48MP + 8MP + 13MP + 2MP quad-camera setup listed in this article is from Vivo India’s website. Vivo Philippines launched the V17 Pro unit in the country with a 48MP + 8MP + 2MP + 2MP quad-camera setup instead.
With additional inputs from Joey Maceda.