Vivo begins its expansion in Spain and the new Vivo V21 5G is one of its main weapons to bring it to fruition. A terminal that claims to be the king of the selfie, but that does not renounce raw power, AMOLED technology or good battery life.

This Vivo V21 5G goes through our scan table, a commitment to front camera photography, full connectivity, and quite a different design than what we’re used to.

Vivo V21 5G tech. Sheet

LIVE V21 5G

DIMENSIONS AND WEIGHT

159.68 x 73.9 x 7.29 mm
175 grams

SCREEN

6.44 inch AMOLED
FullHD + resolution (2,404 x 1,080 pixels)
90 Hz

PROCESSOR

MediaTek dimension 800U

RAM MEMORY

8 GB LPDDR4

INTERNAL STORAGE

128 GB UFS 2.2
Micro SD

REAR CAMERA

64 MP OIS f / 1.9
Wide angle 8 MP f / 2.2
Macro 2 MP f / 2.4

FRONT CAMERA

44 MP f / 2.0 OIS

DRUMS

4000 mAh
33W fast charge

OPERATING SYSTEM

Android 11 with Funtouch OS 11.1

CONNECTIVITY

2.4 / 5 GHz Wi-Fi
Bluetooth 5.1
5G
4G
GPS
USB type C

OTHER

On-screen fingerprint reader
Dual front LED flash

THE PRICE

399.99 euros

Vivo V21 5G 8GB + 128GB

A very striking design and a good screen

What color is this Vivo? Many.

In terms of design, the Vivo V21 5G can enter more or less through the eyes, but it is a well-built mobile. The back is finished in plastic, but the paint (changing colors as the sun hits it) is matte, so it has a good grip and no fingerprints are left. The terminal, in addition, is quite light, with 176 grams of weight and less than 16 centimeters high, a respite at the present time.

The keyboard construction is pretty solid, with the home button feeling a bit rough so we can find it better. We also liked the height of said button panel, as we reach all the buttons with one hand, which is not very common in mobiles over six inches.

This notch is distracting even when we’ve been using the phone for hours.

The weak point is the front. Front-end usage is 84.8% according to GSMarena, but the drooping notch is not typical for a mobile in this price range. It’s quite large and ends up distracting when we use the phone no matter how much we try to get used to it. In addition, despite the frontal use of almost 85%, the glasses are quite generous.

The screen is of quality, with a Full HD + resolution, a refresh rate of 90 Hz and AMOLED technology. Viewing angles can be improved and we’re lacking a bit of extra light outdoors. It is, however, a screen worthy of a mid-range, which we especially appreciate the size of 6.44 inches compared to the standard of 6.67 or more. This panel is large, but can be used with one hand.

We only found one speaker at the bottom of the device, low power and very good quality

On the sound side, we were a little disappointed. In a mobile in this segment, we expect a dual stereo speaker and superior sound quality. The only speaker on this Vivo doesn’t sound very loud, it lacks bass and the overall quality is pretty decent. We don’t have a headphone jack either, so we’ll have to resort to the USB-C port or sound via Bluetooth.

Excellent performance and unexpected autonomy

Performance is one of the strengths of this Vivo.

Vivo has opted for the MediaTek Dimensity 800U to supply its Vivo V21 with power and 5G. In addition, the device comes with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal memory. The performance of the device is excellent, without any trace of lag and quite fluid. It can handle heavy games like Genshin Impact on medium settings and won’t overheat. MediaTek’s Dimensity series is a far cry from Helio, so it becomes a certainty to find such a processor.

I live V21 5G

Realme 8 Pro

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro

OnePlus North

POCO X3 NFC

Samsung galaxy s20

LG Velvet

PROCESSOR

MediaTek dimension 800U

Snapdragon 720G

Snapdragon 732G

Snapdragon 765G

Snapdragon 732G

Exynos 990

Kirin 990

RAM

8 GB

8 GB

6 GB

8 GB

6 GB

8 GB

8 GB

GEEKBENCH 5.0 (single / multi)

552 / 1,634

566 / 1,709

N. d.

554 / 1,832

566 / 1,787

453/2 610

3D BRAND (Sling Shot)

4,305

3,650

N. d.

4.309

3,780

4074

PCMARK WORK

8,795

8 814

8,520

9,194

8 299

9,476

Despite the curious name, FuntouchOS looks more like Android Stock than a Chinese layer.

In addition, this processor is accompanied by FuntouchOS 11, a layer of customization that mixes Asian touches with Android Stock. The launcher and status bar are those of Android Stock, although the settings are quite Asian. We have, yes, many customization options, especially those related to gestures.

The Vivo’s battery is spectacular. It reaches 10 hours of screen time.

If we talk about the battery, the Vivo V21 5G leaves us speechless. “Only” it has 4000 mAh, but the consumption is worthy of a mobile of more than 5000 mAh. We managed to achieve 10 hours of screen time in two days of use and even heavy use fails to deplete it. To put you in context, we made a motorcycle trip with Google Maps active, the mobile connected to a Bluetoot intercom, maximum brightness and 4G. The consumption in almost two hours was 20%. Fast charging is 33W and charges in just one hour.

A camera you expected and a welcome OIS

The Vivo V21 5G’s rear camera is 64 megapixels and stands out from its rivals by the optical stabilizer. It is accompanied by a macro of two megapixels and an ultra wide angle of eight. The selfie camera, which we’ll talk about later, also has OIS and shoots at 44 megapixel resolution, without Pixel Binning. Let’s see, before analyzing the results, how the camera application works.

The Vivo camera app is not very intuitive, although it works quickly. For example, to activate the ultra wide angle, you cannot do it by clicking on the classic 1X icon to change it to 5X, but you have to look for the small “lens” icon and change it from there.

During the day, the photographs of the Vivo V21 can be improved. We liked working with HDR, but the colors didn’t look true and there was hardly any detail. This is mainly due to the processing algorithm, which washes out images a lot even in daylight. The final rendering of the photo is appealing, but we expected more from a mobile in this price range.

HDR has some issues with the sky, which can be burnt even when the phone automatically activates high dynamic range mode. Shadows don’t lift them excessively either.

Ultra wide angle gives us a bit more of the same. The result is not bad, but it can be improved. We find a lack of sharpness, a lot of edge distortion and sufficient experience, but not noticeable.

Photography in automatic mode.

At night the results are acceptable, but they remain a little strange in terms of colorimetry. We liked that the detail was relatively good, without washing out the stage to reduce noise.

Night mode photography.

With the night mode we gain a lot in brightness, so we recommend that you activate it as much as possible. The photography is no longer extinct and the colorimetry improves, since we obtain more vivid colors and according to what they must represent.

Portrait mode washes the face even when removing beauty mode, and it’s a bit contrived. One can get decent photos, but the accuracy of the color and the treatment of the skin are not its strong points.

A selfie with dual flash, optical stabilizer and 44 megapixels

Technically, the Vivo V21’s selfie is a scandal. To my surprise, the terminal doesn’t shoot at just over 10 megapixels, but at full resolution, so we have 44-megapixel selfies. The main problem, as we have seen in the main camera, is that the mobile tends to wash out, even if we do not have the beauty mode active.

Of course, the experience of having an OIS in the front camera is very spectacular. We take care that the photos are not blurry and that the overall image quality is good. We also liked how portrait mode works, one of the best in its segment.

Double Flash vs Night Mode vs Auto.

The dual front flash of this camera is also quite curious, two LEDs that light up a lot when we go to take a night photo. The difference between taking a shot like this and shooting in night mode is not much, so it is more convenient to turn on night mode so as not to dazzle us with flashes (they illuminate more than it does not appear in the photos.)

I live V21 5G, the opinion of Engadget Android

The Vivo V21 5G is a different phone, with a striking finish, a titanic battery and more than worthy performance. Its price, considering the range of the product, is a bit high, although things like RAM memory and software optimization work in its favor compared to the competition.

It fails to become the king of selfies, despite the optical stabilizer and dual flash. The rear camera isn’t convincing either, which, without being bad, leaves us begging for more. Without a doubt, a good landing for Vivo in the midrange, but with a few points to improve.

8.3

Design8.5

Screen8.75

Performance8.75

Camera7

Software8

Autonomy9

For

The software is optimized. It is a very fluid mobile. Presence of OIS in the front and rear cameras.

Against

The camera does not live up to expectations. Best quality price report. Its pretty mediocre.

Vivo V21 5G 8GB + 128GB