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Tony
24-02-2018, 04:33 PM
I'm not sure if this should go here or in chat, but anyway:

What are the fundamental differences between the various Samsung phone ranges? i.e. between the J xx, the A xx and the S xx? I realize that there are differences in performance etc within a range, e.g. an A5 has different capabilities to an A8, but what about an A8 vs an S8 (for example)?

I'm sort of looking for a new phone to replace my ageing Nokia 625, and it is very confusing.

All suggestions gratefully received.

Kame
24-02-2018, 06:05 PM
A8 and S8 share quite a few similarities, the A8 is a mid-high range priced phone compared to the S8.

Major difference is the S8 has a better picture, it's processing power is faster, it supports USB3 and faster/better network/band support, it takes better pictures and has a curved/edge screen. It's lighter too and also has a few additional features.

The A8 is flat screen, heavier and slightly bigger. It has android 7.1.1. It's still a good phone but not as powerful as the S8. Which does mean battery time is slightly longer too which isn't a bad thing.

However the S9 will be an improvement over both these phones.

A8 is like the S8's little brother, they both are ok phones and it really depends on what you would do with your phone, if picture and photos is your thing then the S8, if you want to save a few dollars and still have a phone that packs a punch the A8 is still up there.

I own an S8.

Tony
24-02-2018, 09:10 PM
That's really good info, thanks.

CliveM
24-02-2018, 09:46 PM
It depends what you wish to use a mobile phone for, If it is to mostly send texts and make calls on the cheaper versions handle that perfectly well if you wish to do a lot of web browsing, watch utube and take a lot of photos etc the more expensive version is the way to go in my opinion.

Tony
24-02-2018, 09:59 PM
I'm a bit of one and a bit of the other. I make very few calls and very few texts. I mainly have a smartphone so I can have my contacts and calendar on hand and can sync them with Outlook on the PC. I also find the GPS useful on occasion and I have a few games to help pass the time in waiting rooms etc. I do some web browsing, but only when here is wi-fi available as I'm too mean to pay for data. A camera is not a priority but if I'm going to have one I want it to be half-decent.

Ofthesea
24-02-2018, 11:18 PM
Use pricespy is one option to easily see the differences. Make sure your new phone is 4G capable

CliveM
25-02-2018, 06:27 AM
I'm a bit of one and a bit of the other. I make very few calls and very few texts. I mainly have a smartphone so I can have my contacts and calendar on hand and can sync them with Outlook on the PC. I also find the GPS useful on occasion and I have a few games to help pass the time in waiting rooms etc. I do some web browsing, but only when here is wi-fi available as I'm too mean to pay for data. A camera is not a priority but if I'm going to have one I want it to be half-decent.

That pretty much describes my usage as well Tony. My current phone is a Galaxy A5 2017 model and at around the third of the price of the top models I am more than happy with it.

effie c
25-02-2018, 11:29 AM
Hi all,

Clive M is spot on as to value

I paid $699 18 months ago as an upgrade for an old S3 Galaxy, and it, an A5 does everything, from online Facebook, Net, to txt, and so on,and as a second computer, for half the price of a S8 and even my Soccer assessor son who gets a new, latest, phone every two years is impressed- and he lives on his phone

and it is a 4G as well

The camera is actually as good as the very expensive models, to boot

Go for it Tony, save your money

effie c

Tony
25-02-2018, 12:17 PM
Go for it Tony, save your money

I think I probably will - unless inertia sets in and I keep putting it off until my Nokia actually dies on me...

Thanks everyone for the input.

dugimodo
25-02-2018, 02:41 PM
When the note 7 came out I looked on trademe and got a Note 5 for $500, there's a risk buying second hand but the previous flagship model can often be found cheap when the new one comes out and will still be a nicer phone than current mid range models.
Just a thought, second hand has it's down sides. I also sold my S3 for $250 so the whole upgrade was $250 - bloody cheap for a note 5. As luck would have it the note 7 went up in flames (heh) and the note 5 continued to sell new for approx $1k for quite a while.

I still have it and it's still an awesome phone, even still getting updates and running android 7.0. I think the biggest things for an average user with the high end models is the nicer screen and better camera, I never come close to needing the extra power.
Anyway that's my 2c, new mid range or 2nd hand older flagship.

linw
25-02-2018, 08:45 PM
Good advice, Dugi, IMHO, of course!

I bought a S5 when it was a couple of years behind and have never regretted it. Mind, you, it was new not used.

Lawrence
25-02-2018, 09:30 PM
Not long inherited a Galaxy Note 2 and amazed by it's size and features and don't find the size too big

looked at reviews of the Note 3/4/5 and yes they have improved on the Note 2

Also make sure you have the LTE Band 28(700mhz) as both Spark and Vodafone use this for 4G ,the Note 2 lacks this Band

Tony
25-02-2018, 09:30 PM
Of course we've been talking about Samsung, but they are not the only phone manufacturer. What other brands are worth considering? Please don't use the Iph-word.

Ofthesea
25-02-2018, 09:48 PM
I think phones are a bit like laptops, saying a brand is good is pretty meaningless. Some brands have a really good value model but some rubbish. Some brands have management changes for better or worse that mean some years are good some bad. You really have to work out what features you need and take it from there, but I would avoid new phones that were first released some years ago.

1101
26-02-2018, 08:52 AM
In general

the cheaper samsung phones have much worse camera : bad low light performance

the cheaper phones are abandoned by samsung 6 months after release
So you'll get zero system & security updates. You will never be able to upgrade to newer versions of android (unless you hack it)

Ive owned several cheap/mid range samsungs . As a phone, nothing wrong with them ....
Screens are OK on the cheaper/mid level ph, do you really need 1080 vid res on a phone :-)

Not sure, but maybee the batt is user replaceable on the cheapies , but not on the top end samsungs now ?

Another question:
what is better , a new cheap/mid range , or a used S4, S5 ?

Tony
26-02-2018, 09:16 AM
the cheaper samsung phones have much worse camera : bad low light performance


So would you put an A5 into this category?

1101
26-02-2018, 11:01 AM
So would you put an A5 into this category?

https://www.techradar.com/reviews/samsung-galaxy-a5-2017/3
"The only area in which it trips up is the usual: low light"

in general, dont expect top of the line camera performance with mid range phones.

Quoted Megapixels means nothing in low light .
Reviews dont seem to reflect actual performance from my experience , just comparing the low light performance of ph's Ive had to those around me at the same time.
My LG was supposed to have very good low light performance, thats the only reason I bought it. It was just as bad as the cheapies :)

Tony
26-02-2018, 12:43 PM
in general, don't expect top of the line camera performance with mid range phones.


Camera performance is not a biggie for me.

Kame
26-02-2018, 01:17 PM
If you're into modifying the phone, custom firmware, etc. Some processors you can change a few bits (0 or 1) to turn on/off more bands to get even better provider support. It's probably not a method people will go down, but that possibility is there. With 4g, you literally want every band your provider supports to have the best coverage you can get.

I'm not at home, but I had a link that had a database of a lot of phones and network provider support in which you could find phones that were fully supported for your provider. So you could just buy a phone that supported your provider rather than modify it, but it does limit your features and choices. The link if I remember was called willmyphonework.net or similar to that name.

John H
26-02-2018, 01:41 PM
Tony, I had a J1 Ace for some time until I ran out of RAM on it - we are campervanners, so when we are away I use the phone for email, Stuff etc.

The reason for running out of space was the apps I want to have on the phone, for NZMCA, Covi Insurance, fishing regs, tide tables etc etc for when we are away. Some can't be moved to a memory card, so I just ran out of room, even after uninstalling lots of stuff.

I have upgraded to the J3 Pro, which has more than enough RAM for my needs, and I am very satisfied with it. My wife now has the J1 and finds it more than adequate for her needs, after all my apps were removed.

gary67
27-02-2018, 09:00 AM
Been super happy with wifes Vodafone Smart Ultra 6 and my Smart Ultra 7. Both work extremely well and we use then on 2D not Vodafone. Does everything I want it to do, decent screen size more than enough power for what we need.

Mine has just been to England and back, I take it to work where it live in my nail pouch getting dusty and occasionally damp. Just on 2 years old and hasn't missed a beat.

I use it calls, texts, viber texts, plenty of browsing, emails gmail & outlook, some photos and videoing and i have it crammed with apps

Tony
02-03-2018, 08:43 PM
I'm thinking about a Galaxy A5, but I've also seen a Sony Xperia XA1 which is $200 cheaper.

Thoughts?

Tony
02-03-2018, 10:13 PM
I'm thinking about a Galaxy A5, but I've also seen a Sony Xperia XA1 which is $200 cheaper.

Thoughts?

Answering my own question, the A5 has a higher res screen, a bigger battery and is waterproof and is also a bit smaller (which is probably not a big deal for me), but runs Android M rather than N (which may or may not be a big deal).

CliveM
02-03-2018, 10:51 PM
Answering my own question, the A5 has a higher res screen, a bigger battery and is waterproof and is also a bit smaller (which is probably not a big deal for me), but runs Android M rather than N (which may or may not be a big deal).

The 2017 A5 upgrades to N as a matter of course.

Tony
03-03-2018, 12:39 PM
Well I did it! Made a decision, that is. I am now the owner of a Galaxy A5 from Spark. Interest free payments spread over 2 years, all pretty painless.

I now have to get familiar with Android, having always been a Windows phone user. Should be interesting.

gary67
03-03-2018, 05:10 PM
Android is the easiest to learn out of all the different systems out there

Tony
03-03-2018, 05:28 PM
Android is the easiest to learn out of all the different systems out there

The young woman in the shop reckoned Android is much easier than Windows, but as she'd only ever used Android, I'm not placing too much reliance on her opinion. :)

gary67
03-03-2018, 09:21 PM
Have used both and sometimes had to use others iPhones, I find Android the most intuitive of the three, Windows phone always felt clunky and weird to use

Tony
03-03-2018, 09:45 PM
I've hit problem number one. It seems my wi-fi password isn't what I thought it was - a job for tomorrow.