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Blackview R7 Smartphone Review

Marcus Herbrich, Tanja Hinum (translated by Andreas Osthoff), 09/13/2016

Low-budget flagship smartphone? Low-budget flagship smartphone? The R7 is the first self-titled flagship smartphone from the Chinese manufacturer Blackview – for a local price of around 160 Euros (~$180). We will check how the new flagship performs in our in-depth review.

For the original German review, see here.

Being a smartphone for a street price of around 160 Euros, the Blackview R7 is very well-equipped and uses technology, which is usually reserved for premium devices. The 5.5-inch IPS display offers the Full HD resolution (1080p), the 32 GB of internal storage can be expanded and the RAM equipment is quite generous at 4 GB. Just as premium is the octa-core processor Helio P10 (MT6755) from MediaTek with a clock speed of 2.0 GHz. It is also possible to unlock the dual-SIM smartphone via fingerprint scanner.

The LTE smartphone is available in the colors gold (Champagne Gold), silver (Space Silver) as well as grey (Stardust Grey). Possible rivals in this price range include the ZTE Blade V7 Lite, the Coolpad Torino S, the LG K10 as well as the slightly more expensive Honor 5C. The reference device for this review is the current Xiaomi flagship smartphone Mi 5.

Blackview R7
Graphics adapter
Memory
4096 MB 
Display
5.5 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 401 PPI, capacitive, LCD, IPS, glossy: yes
Storage
32 GB eMMC Flash, 32 GB 
, 25.43 GB free
Connections
1 USB 2.0, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm stereo jack, Card Reader: microSD (up to 128 GB), 1 Fingerprint Reader, NFC, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: Proximity, Accelerometer, OTG, Miracast
Networking
802.11 b/g/n (b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.0, 2G: 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz, 3G: 900 / 2100 MHz, 4G: LTE 800 / 900 / 1800 / 2100 / 2600 4G: 1900/ 2300/ 2600 MHz, Dual SIM, LTE, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 8.9 x 152 x 78 ( = 0.35 x 5.98 x 3.07 in)
Battery
3000 mAh Lithium-Polymer, Battery runtime (according to manufacturer): 334 h, Talk time 3G (according to manufacturer): 14 h
Operating System
Android 6.0 Marshmallow
Camera
Primary Camera: 13 MPix
Secondary Camera: 8 MPix
Additional features
Speakers: Mono, Keyboard: On-screen, Keyboard Light: yes, modular power adapter, USB cable, screen protector, protective case, Blackview UI, 12 Months Warranty, fanless
Weight
197 g ( = 6.95 oz / 0.43 pounds), Power Supply: 93 g ( = 3.28 oz / 0.21 pounds)
Price
160 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

The chassis of the Blackview R7 is mainly made of the glass and metal materials. The stability of the smartphone is ensured by a massive metal frame, which is one factor for the high weight of 197 grams (~7 oz). The frame areas at the front feel flat and edgy, despite the slightly curved 2.5-D glass made of Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The side areas around the display are comparatively thin at about 2 millimeters (~0.08 in), but the screen-case ratio is still just 70.3%, which is due to the big frames above and below the display.

The metal back cover is slightly rounded and cannot be removed. As with the speaker grilles, it is interrupted by ribbed plastic at the top and bottom. The haptic impression is still quite decent in spite of the size and the high weight. If you hold it with your hands, the Blackview R7 will occasionally produce creaking sounds.

The quality of the case is quite satisfactory for this price range, even though you can dent the rear cover slightly. Only the buttons for volume up/down and standby that are located on the right side of the case were not convincing. The pressure points are not well-defined; they have too much play and as a result, clatter quite a lot.

Size Comparison

152 mm / 5.98 inch 78 mm / 3.07 inch 8.9 mm / 0.3504 inch 197 g0.4343 lbs146.6 mm / 5.77 inch 74.8 mm / 2.94 inch 8.8 mm / 0.3465 inch 140 g0.3086 lbs147.1 mm / 5.79 inch 73.8 mm / 2.91 inch 8.3 mm / 0.3268 inch 156 g0.3439 lbs143.8 mm / 5.66 inch 70.2 mm / 2.76 inch 8.3 mm / 0.3268 inch 135 g0.2976 lbs139 mm / 5.47 inch 67.8 mm / 2.67 inch 7.9 mm / 0.311 inch 119 g0.2624 lbs

Connectivity

The internal eMMC storage has a capacity of 32 GB, and you can use 25.43 GB of this for your own data after the initial setup. It is possible to expand the capacity with a microSDXC-card (up to 128 GB) and apps can also be transferred to the card via App2SD functionality.

Technical specifications of the Blackview R7 include an FM radio as well as a fingerprint scanner. You can also attach peripherals such as USB drives at the micro-USB 2.0 port via OTG adapter. The wireless transfer of picture contents to external monitors is also supported.

Software

Blackview ships the R7 with Google's current software Android 6.0 "Marshmallow" with the security patch from March 2016. The user interface within the settings as well as the notification bar was adjusted by the manufacturer. The structure and the layout, however, hardly differ from the standard Android. Installed apps in Blackview's launcher are not listed in an app drawer, but are shown on the home screen.

Despite the selection of the German language, not all parts are translated properly and some were shown in English instead.

Communication and GPS

Small fluctuations for the transfer rates, Iperf client
Small fluctuations for the transfer rates, Iperf server

Local wireless connections can be established via Bluetooth 4.0. The integrated WLAN module supports the IEEE-802.11 standards b/g/n (dual-band) and works both in 2.4 as well as 5 GHz networks. The range of the signal is convenient – the damping in close proximity to the router (Telekom Speedport W921V) is -52 dBm. The Wi-Fi transfer speed between the smartphone and our reference router Linksys EA8500 is just as impressive. The data rates are much higher compared to the Honor 5C and were quite steady without any noteworthy fluctuations during our review.

The Blackview R7 supports mobile networks via GSM (quad-band), UMTS (dual-band) as well as LTE. Thanks to the dual-SIM functionality, you can use two microSIM-cards simultaneously. However, only one slot supports LET, the other is limited to the 2G network. It is quite unusual for imported devices, but the Blackview R7 even supports the 800 MHz band (LTE band 20), which is particularly important for rural areas in Germany. Overall, however, the number of supported frequencies is comparatively low.

Networking
iperf Server (receive) TCP 1 m
Xiaomi Mi 5
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
316 MBit/s ∼100% +210%
Blackview R7
Mali-T860 MP2, Helio P10 MT6755, 32 GB eMMC Flash
102 MBit/s ∼32%
Honor 5C
Mali-T830 MP2, Kirin 650, 16 GB eMMC Flash
49.8 MBit/s ∼16% -51%
iperf Client (transmit) TCP 1 m
Xiaomi Mi 5
Adreno 530, 820 MSM8996, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash
265 MBit/s ∼100% +234%
Blackview R7
Mali-T860 MP2, Helio P10 MT6755, 32 GB eMMC Flash
79.4 MBit/s ∼30%
Honor 5C
Mali-T830 MP2, Kirin 650, 16 GB eMMC Flash
58.3 MBit/s ∼22% -27%
GPS Test outdoors
GPS Test indoors

The smartphone locates its position via GPS satellites. The location outdoors is a bit delayed and accurate down to roughly 4 meters (~13 ft), but the number of satellites is pretty low. A satellite fix is not possible indoors. The overall track length on our bicycle ride (~8 km/~5 mi) differs by 200 meters (~219 yd) between the smartphone and the professional navigation device Garmin Edge 500. The accuracy of the professional GPS is better in general, but the performance of the Blackview R7 is not bad when you consider the price.

GPS Test Blackview R7
GPS Test Blackview R7
GPS Test Blackview R7
GPS Test Garmin Edge 500
GPS Test Garmin Edge 500
GPS Test Garmin Edge 500

Telephone and Voice Quality

The phone app is mostly the standard app from the familiar vanilla Android. Besides speed dial, the app also features a call history as well as direct access to your stored contacts.

The signal quality of the Blackview R7 is good and the voice from our call partner was clear. Unlike the earpiece, the quality of the integrated microphone is bad. It was particularly hard to understand in video calls; our call partner complained of a slightly too quiet and distorted voice.

Numbers pad
Phone app

Cameras

Macro shot 13 MP camera
Picture front camera

The main camera with an OmniVision 13 MP PureCel sensor (OV13853) is located at the rear of the Blackview R7. As a result, pictures are taken at up to 4160x3120 pixels in a 4:3 aspect ratio. Thanks to the f/2.0 aperture – which describes the ratio between the focal length and the diameter – the sensor captures a lot of light. The edge length, however, is much smaller compared to other sensors from modern flagship smartphones such as the HTC 10 (1.55 µm), for instance.

Pictures taken with the 13 MP camera show sufficient details under good lighting conditions. The sharpness is good and the auto focus works well. The problem of the Blackview R7 is the color accuracy of the pictures. Our sample shots show very warm colors with a red cast (scene 1 & 2: fruit & environment), but also pale and washed-out (scene 3: environment). There is a lot of picture noise in low-light situations.

The front camera takes pictures with up to 8 MP and also uses a sensor from OmniVision (OV8858). The quality of the pictures is good for a device in this price range and absolutely okay for selfies.

Videos can  be recorded either in 1080p at 30 frames per second (13 MP camera) or 720p at 30 fps (8 MP camera), respectively.

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3
click to load images

Accessories and Warranty

Inside the box of the R7 is a modular power adapter, a USB cable, a transparent protective case cover as well as a protective cover for the display.

The manufacturer's warranty is 12 months starting from the day of the purchase.

Input Devices and Handling

There are three non-illuminated capacitive buttons with the typical Android 6.0 design under the display that you can use to control the Blackview R7. Unlike the standard Android, however, their position is switched, which is familiar from Samsung devices (Back, right; Multitasking, left). The sensitivity and the accuracy of the touchscreen are good. Blackview uses the standard on-screen keyboard from Google.

On the back is an active fingerprint scanner to unlock the smartphone. The detection rate could be better, and occasionally, you have to put your finger on the scanner several times before it unlocks the device. The speed of the biometric identification could be improved as well – a Coolpad Torino S recognizes fingerprints faster and is more reliable.

On-screen keyboard, portrait mode
On-screen keyboard, portrait mode
On-screen keyboard, landscape mode

Display

Subpixel array

The 5.5-inch LC display of the Blackview R7 has a conveniently high resolution of 1920x1080 pixels, so all the contents are sufficiently sharp thanks to the pixel density of 401 PPI. We can measure a very good luminance of 554 cd/m² for the IPS panel. The more realistic APL50 test determines 552 cd/m² for the center of the screen, so there is hardly any deviation from the maximum value.

506
cd/m²
554
cd/m²
529
cd/m²
503
cd/m²
552
cd/m²
517
cd/m²
504
cd/m²
541
cd/m²
531
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 554 cd/m² Average: 526.3 cd/m² Minimum: 28.36 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 91 %
Center on Battery: 552 cd/m²
Contrast: 863:1 (Black: 0.64 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 11 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.1
ΔE Greyscale 14.3 | 0.64-98 Ø6.4
Gamma: 2.21
Blackview R7
IPS, 1920x1080, 5.5
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
IPS, 1280x720, 5
Coolpad Torino S
IPS, 1280x720, 4.7
LG K10
IPS, 1280x720, 5.3
Honor 5C
IPS, 1920x1080, 5.2
Xiaomi Mi 5
IPS, 1920x1080, 5.15
Screen
25%
12%
18%
22%
36%
Brightness middle
552
312
-43%
360
-35%
370
-33%
515
-7%
598
8%
Brightness
526
302
-43%
358
-32%
355
-33%
498
-5%
566
8%
Brightness Distribution
91
79
-13%
87
-4%
92
1%
93
2%
90
-1%
Black Level *
0.64
0.15
77%
0.45
30%
0.28
56%
0.49
23%
0.51
20%
Contrast
863
2080
141%
800
-7%
1321
53%
1051
22%
1173
36%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
11
8.2
25%
6.8
38%
6.7
39%
6.2
44%
3.5
68%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
20.8
16.5
21%
11.3
46%
17.8
14%
11.4
45%
6.1
71%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
14.3
9.2
36%
6.2
57%
7.9
45%
7.4
48%
3.5
76%
Gamma
2.21 100%
2.29 96%
2.14 103%
2.21 100%
2.28 96%
2.29 96%
CCT
12996 50%
9017 72%
7975 82%
9072 72%
8664 75%
6532 100%

* ... smaller is better

Both the contrast (863:1) as well as the black value (0.64 cd/m², APL50: 0.66 cd/m²) are below average for an IPS panel, but still sufficient in practice. The smartphone from Blackview also shows significant deficits in terms of color accuracy: DeltaE deviations of 11 (ColorChecker) and 14.3 (Grayscale) are very high, even in this price range. The grayscale also shows a distinct blue cast.

CalMAN ColorChecker (target color space sRGB, picture mode Standard)
CalMAN Colorspace (target color space sRGB, picture mode Standard)
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps (target color space sRGB, picture mode Standard)
CalMAN Grayscale (target color space sRGB, picture mode Standard)
CalMAN ColorChecker (target color space sRGB, picture mode User)
CalMAN Colorspace (target color space sRGB, picture mode User)
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps (target color space sRGB, picture mode User)
CalMAN Grayscale (target color space sRGB, picture mode User)

The outdoor performance of the Blackview R7 is convincing because of the very high maximum luminance. Thanks to the IPS technology, the liquid crystal display provides wide viewing angles and the colors remain stable for a long time.

Outdoor use
Outdoor use
Viewing angles

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
28 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 10 ms rise
↘ 18 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 59 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.5 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
32 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 10 ms rise
↘ 22 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 19 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (40.7 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9705 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Performance

Blackview has equipped the R7 with the upper mainstream SoC (System on a Chip) MediaTek Helio P10 MT6755. It consists of eight CPU cores based on the 64-bit Cortex-A53 architecture.

Subjectively, the system performance is very good. The system runs smoothly and almost without delays in practice. Apps are also launched and closed quickly. The browser performance with the browser Chrome (not installed by default) is not that convincing, but still good for this price range. The Helio P10 SoC, which is supported by 4 GB of RAM, can show its potential in the benchmarks and is on par with the Honor 5C, but the other comparison devices cannot keep up with the processor performance.

Besides the CPU, the subjective system performance is also defined by the performance of the internal eMMC storage. The transfer rates are very good in this price range, and only the Honor 5C is on a similar level. The integrated microSD-card slot on the other hand is comparatively slow. We checked the performance with our reference memory card Toshiba Exceria Pro M401 (read up to 95 MB/s, write up to 80 MB/s). Only 16 MB/s (read) and 12 MB/s (write), respectively, are just average at best for this price segment.

AndroBench 3-5
Sequential Write 256KB SDCard (sort by value)
Blackview R7
11.87 MB/s ∼14%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
12.62 MB/s ∼14% +6%
Coolpad Torino S
16.54 MB/s ∼19% +39%
LG K10
45 MB/s ∼52% +279%
Honor 5C
24.21 MB/s ∼28% +104%
Sequential Read 256KB SDCard (sort by value)
Blackview R7
15.56 MB/s ∼16%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
22.77 MB/s ∼24% +46%
Coolpad Torino S
25.79 MB/s ∼27% +66%
LG K10
75.47 MB/s ∼78% +385%
Honor 5C
51.93 MB/s ∼54% +234%
Random Write 4KB (sort by value)
Blackview R7
11.4 MB/s ∼5%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
8.26 MB/s ∼3% -28%
Coolpad Torino S
6.94 MB/s ∼3% -39%
LG K10
7.5 MB/s ∼3% -34%
Honor 5C
15.7 MB/s ∼6% +38%
Xiaomi Mi 5
13.61 MB/s ∼5% +19%
Random Read 4KB (sort by value)
Blackview R7
28.02 MB/s ∼16%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
18.24 MB/s ∼10% -35%
Coolpad Torino S
18.34 MB/s ∼11% -35%
LG K10
9.2 MB/s ∼5% -67%
Honor 5C
61.7 MB/s ∼35% +120%
Xiaomi Mi 5
106.78 MB/s ∼61% +281%
Sequential Write 256KB (sort by value)
Blackview R7
122.67 MB/s ∼32%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
70.33 MB/s ∼18% -43%
Coolpad Torino S
41.81 MB/s ∼11% -66%
LG K10
78 MB/s ∼20% -36%
Honor 5C
75.5 MB/s ∼19% -38%
Xiaomi Mi 5
159.29 MB/s ∼41% +30%
Sequential Read 256KB (sort by value)
Blackview R7
247.58 MB/s ∼27%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
187.34 MB/s ∼21% -24%
Coolpad Torino S
140.34 MB/s ∼15% -43%
LG K10
131 MB/s ∼14% -47%
Honor 5C
263 MB/s ∼29% +6%
Xiaomi Mi 5
459.64 MB/s ∼50% +86%
AnTuTu v6 - Total Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
50572 Points ∼18%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
23822 Points ∼9% -53%
Coolpad Torino S
22766 Points ∼8% -55%
LG K10
27383 Points ∼10% -46%
Honor 5C
53143 Points ∼19% +5%
Xiaomi Mi 5
116330 Points ∼42% +130%
3DMark
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Physics (sort by value)
Blackview R7
1155 Points ∼27%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
618 Points ∼15% -46%
Coolpad Torino S
735 Points ∼17% -36%
LG K10
730 Points ∼17% -37%
Honor 5C
1418 Points ∼34% +23%
Xiaomi Mi 5
1976 Points ∼47% +71%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Graphics (sort by value)
Blackview R7
518 Points ∼5%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
101 Points ∼1% -81%
Coolpad Torino S
41 Points ∼0% -92%
LG K10
41 Points ∼0% -92%
Honor 5C
480 Points ∼5% -7%
Xiaomi Mi 5
4558 Points ∼43% +780%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 (sort by value)
Blackview R7
590 Points ∼8%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
124 Points ∼2% -79%
Coolpad Torino S
52 Points ∼1% -91%
LG K10
52 Points ∼1% -91%
Honor 5C
563 Points ∼8% -5%
Xiaomi Mi 5
3542 Points ∼49% +500%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics (sort by value)
Blackview R7
12585 Points ∼15%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
7026 Points ∼8% -44%
Coolpad Torino S
9205 Points ∼11% -27%
LG K10
9106 Points ∼11% -28%
Honor 5C
13588 Points ∼16% +8%
Xiaomi Mi 5
21483 Points ∼25% +71%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
10334 Points ∼2%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
2645 Points ∼0% -74%
Coolpad Torino S
3858 Points ∼1% -63%
LG K10
3774 Points ∼1% -63%
Honor 5C
11319 Points ∼2% +10%
Xiaomi Mi 5
32613 Points ∼6% +216%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
10762 Points ∼5%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
3070 Points ∼1% -71%
Coolpad Torino S
4430 Points ∼2% -59%
LG K10
4339 Points ∼2% -60%
Honor 5C
11755 Points ∼5% +9%
Xiaomi Mi 5
29246 Points ∼12% +172%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Blackview R7
17 fps ∼0%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
4.9 fps ∼0% -71%
Coolpad Torino S
9.8 fps ∼0% -42%
LG K10
5.2 fps ∼0% -69%
Honor 5C
19 fps ∼0% +12%
Xiaomi Mi 5
90 fps ∼1% +429%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16 (sort by value)
Blackview R7
17 fps ∼1%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
8.2 fps ∼0% -52%
Coolpad Torino S
5.3 fps ∼0% -69%
LG K10
9.7 fps ∼0% -43%
Honor 5C
20 fps ∼1% +18%
Xiaomi Mi 5
60 fps ∼2% +253%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL (sort by value)
Blackview R7
4.7 fps ∼1%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
3.4 fps ∼1% -28%
Coolpad Torino S
4.3 fps ∼1% -9%
LG K10
1.8 fps ∼0% -62%
Honor 5C
7.9 fps ∼1% +68%
Xiaomi Mi 5
42 fps ∼8% +794%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL (sort by value)
Blackview R7
4.7 fps ∼1%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
1.8 fps ∼0% -62%
Coolpad Torino S
1.8 fps ∼0% -62%
LG K10
4.1 fps ∼1% -13%
Honor 5C
8.4 fps ∼2% +79%
Xiaomi Mi 5
42 fps ∼12% +794%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen (sort by value)
Blackview R7
2.5 fps ∼0%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
2.5 fps ∼0% 0%
LG K10
fps ∼0% -100%
Honor 5C
4.5 fps ∼0% +80%
Xiaomi Mi 5
30 fps ∼1% +1100%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen (sort by value)
Blackview R7
2.5 fps ∼0%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
1.2 fps ∼0% -52%
LG K10
fps ∼0% -100%
Honor 5C
4.9 fps ∼0% +96%
Xiaomi Mi 5
31 fps ∼1% +1140%
PCMark for Android - Work performance score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
4364 Points ∼22%
Coolpad Torino S
3932 Points ∼20% -10%
LG K10
3999 Points ∼20% -8%
Honor 5C
5120 Points ∼26% +17%
Xiaomi Mi 5
6873 Points ∼35% +57%
BaseMark OS II
Web (sort by value)
Blackview R7
10 Points ∼0%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
592 Points ∼29% +5820%
Coolpad Torino S
599 Points ∼29% +5890%
LG K10
562 Points ∼28% +5520%
Honor 5C
707 Points ∼35% +6970%
Xiaomi Mi 5
1106 Points ∼54% +10960%
Graphics (sort by value)
Blackview R7
655 Points ∼2%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
174 Points ∼1% -73%
Coolpad Torino S
321 Points ∼1% -51%
LG K10
310 Points ∼1% -53%
Honor 5C
814 Points ∼3% +24%
Xiaomi Mi 5
4522 Points ∼16% +590%
Memory (sort by value)
Blackview R7
1030 Points ∼16%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
487 Points ∼8% -53%
Coolpad Torino S
607 Points ∼10% -41%
LG K10
453 Points ∼7% -56%
Honor 5C
1504 Points ∼24% +46%
Xiaomi Mi 5
1801 Points ∼29% +75%
System (sort by value)
Blackview R7
1971 Points ∼12%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
801 Points ∼5% -59%
Coolpad Torino S
1102 Points ∼7% -44%
LG K10
1050 Points ∼6% -47%
Honor 5C
2600 Points ∼16% +32%
Xiaomi Mi 5
3638 Points ∼22% +85%
Overall (sort by value)
Blackview R7
338 Points ∼4%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
448 Points ∼5% +33%
Coolpad Torino S
602 Points ∼7% +78%
LG K10
536 Points ∼6% +59%
Honor 5C
1225 Points ∼14% +262%
Xiaomi Mi 5
2392 Points ∼28% +608%
JetStream 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
25.349 Points ∼8%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
12.729 Points ∼4% -50%
Coolpad Torino S
14.453 Points ∼4% -43%
LG K10
17.478 Points ∼5% -31%
Honor 5C
27.934 Points ∼8% +10%
Xiaomi Mi 5
53.969 Points ∼16% +113%
Octane V2 - Total Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
3885 Points ∼8%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
1910 Points ∼4% -51%
Coolpad Torino S
2364 Points ∼5% -39%
LG K10
2838 Points ∼6% -27%
Honor 5C
4188 Points ∼8% +8%
Xiaomi Mi 5
8619 Points ∼17% +122%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score (sort by value)
Blackview R7
9748.3 ms * ∼16%
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
19234.4 ms * ∼32% -97%
Coolpad Torino S
15784.4 ms * ∼27% -62%
LG K10
16638 ms * ∼28% -71%
Honor 5C
9111.2 ms * ∼15% +7%
Xiaomi Mi 5
2973.3 ms * ∼5% +69%

Legend

 
Blackview R7 Mediatek Helio P10 MT6755, ARM Mali-T860 MP2, 32 GB eMMC Flash
 
ZTE Blade V7 Lite Mediatek MT6735, ARM Mali-T720, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Coolpad Torino S Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 MSM8916, Qualcomm Adreno 306, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
LG K10 Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 MSM8916, Qualcomm Adreno 306, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Honor 5C HiSilicon Kirin 650, ARM Mali-T830 MP2, 16 GB eMMC Flash
 
Xiaomi Mi 5 Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 MSM8996, Qualcomm Adreno 530, 64 GB UFS 2.0 Flash

* ... smaller is better

Games

Thanks to the comparatively powerful graphics unit ARM Mali-T860 MP2 of the Helio P10 SoC, the Blackview R7 is well-equipped for all games from the Play Store. Even demanding games such as “N.O.V.A. 3” or “Need for Speed No Limits” run smoothly at high details.

Need for Speed No Limits
N.O.V.A 3

Emissions

Temperature

The smartphone from Blackview does not really warm up while idling – we can measure an even temperature distribution with a maximum temperature of 32.7 °C (~91 °F). This changes under load, where the top in particular gets much warmer up to 41.8 °C (~107 °F), while the lower part stays much cooler. Compared to the rivals, the temperature development of the Blackview R7 is very good.

Heat development: maximum load (front)
Heat development: maximum load (front)
Heat development: maximum load (rear)
Heat development: maximum load (rear)
Max. Load
 38.4 °C
101 F
34.4 °C
94 F
33.4 °C
92 F
 
 39 °C
102 F
35.2 °C
95 F
35.1 °C
95 F
 
 37.8 °C
100 F
34.8 °C
95 F
33.7 °C
93 F
 
Maximum: 39 °C = 102 F
Average: 35.8 °C = 96 F
32.2 °C
90 F
34.2 °C
94 F
40.1 °C
104 F
32.5 °C
91 F
33.8 °C
93 F
41.8 °C
107 F
32.6 °C
91 F
34 °C
93 F
39.5 °C
103 F
Maximum: 41.8 °C = 107 F
Average: 35.6 °C = 96 F
Power Supply (max.)  33.5 °C = 92 F | Room Temperature 21.1 °C = 70 F | Voltcraft IR-350
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 35.8 °C / 96 F, compared to the average of 33.1 °C / 92 F for the devices in the class Smartphone.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 39 °C / 102 F, compared to the average of 35.6 °C / 96 F, ranging from 22.4 to 51.7 °C for the class Smartphone.
(±) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 41.8 °C / 107 F, compared to the average of 34.1 °C / 93 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 31 °C / 88 F, compared to the device average of 33.1 °C / 92 F.

Speakers

Speaker measurements: Pink Noise
Speaker measurements: Pink Noise

The mono speaker at the bottom of our test model reaches a maximum volume of almost 75 dB(A). This means that the speaker of the R7 is not as loud as the direct competition – comparable devices often manage more than 80 dB(A). The sound quality is much worse compared to other mainstream devices and appears tinny and distorted. There is too much emphasis on the high tones, while bass is – as expected – not available.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2024.323.124.324.32522.32122.722.33122.720.322.622.74023.723.229.623.75021.221.922.221.26319.119.32019.18017.617.118.517.610020.120.12120.112530.630.931.930.616016.71616.516.720018.218.317.318.225017.817.618.317.83151719.517.31740019.529.216.419.550027.13917.827.163030.643.414.830.68003850.915.738100042.35616.442.3125045.66015.845.6160047.861.713.647.8200050.963.114.850.9250050.26312.650.2315052.264.711.252.2400052.86510.952.8500053.4669.753.4630052.4659.652.4800048.6619.748.6100004153.69.4411250034.147.69.434.11600029.743.79.429.7SPL61.774.426.161.7N12.828.50.812.8median 38median 50.9median 14.8median 38Delta14.216.82.814.236.331.432.436.334.429.331.334.431.632.231.731.635.134.12635.138.134.939.438.13132.536.23126.427.228.626.427.527.725.427.527.531.121.327.526.827.523.326.830.627.122.530.638.429.922.438.446.432.921.346.45240.318.45260.847.817.560.865.85517.565.870.661.817.270.67463.816.87473.96317.373.968.957.917.468.968.857.416.668.868.857.717.368.868.65717.668.668.255.217.668.268.453.817.768.469.85517.469.874.359.417.774.375.160.417.975.169.954.818.169.966.35118.166.382.670.729.882.653.425.61.353.4median 68.4median 55median 17.7median 68.410.98.91.610.932.537.232.432.532.733.631.332.723.531.231.723.530.833.52630.841.139.139.441.132.933.436.232.928.930.728.628.926.425.825.426.427.324.821.327.328.325.823.328.332.62422.532.638.624.722.438.646.432.421.346.454.537.518.454.55942.917.55959.549.517.559.562.750.117.262.766.952.516.866.971.155.517.371.175.358.217.475.379.162.916.679.180.463.817.380.479.162.217.679.177.660.117.677.675.357.417.775.374.657.417.474.674.356.517.774.372.354.517.972.364.145.818.164.146.227.918.146.287.971.229.887.964.123.81.364.1median 64.1median 50.1median 17.7median 64.114.612.21.614.638.234.432.438.235.235.731.335.228.932.631.728.931.1322631.139.640.339.439.634.133.236.234.126.626.428.626.62622.625.42626.723.121.326.720.823.523.320.824.620.222.524.627.421.222.427.438.923.821.338.944.429.118.444.45134.417.55156.140.117.556.164.546.917.264.568.252.416.868.268.152.617.368.170.154.517.470.170.852.916.670.871.454.117.371.47054.117.6706952.817.66970.954.617.770.96750.217.46769.153.317.769.171.554.717.971.567.951.218.167.963.946.718.163.981.164.729.881.146.116.91.346.1median 67median 50.2median 17.7median 671412.11.614hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseBlackview R7ZTE Blade V7 LiteHonor 5CCoolpad Torino S
Blackview R7 audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (74.4 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 30.5% lower than median
(-) | bass is not linear (15.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 9.8% lower than median
(-) | mids are not linear (15.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 11.7% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (6.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(-) | overall sound is not linear (42.7% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 98% of all tested devices in this class were better, 1% similar, 0% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 99% of all tested devices were better, 1% similar, 1% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

ZTE Blade V7 Lite audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (82.62 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 35.5% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 5.1% lower than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (2.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (23.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 37% of all tested devices in this class were better, 14% similar, 49% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 62% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 30% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Honor 5C audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (87.9 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 30.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (8.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7.1% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 12.1% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (2.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(-) | overall sound is not linear (32.2% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 89% of all tested devices in this class were better, 4% similar, 6% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 92% of all tested devices were better, 3% similar, 5% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Coolpad Torino S audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (81.09 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 39.6% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (8.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 7.7% lower than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.8% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (3.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (28.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 75% of all tested devices in this class were better, 7% similar, 18% worse
» The best had a delta of 13%, average was 25%, worst was 44%
Compared to all devices tested
» 84% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 12% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency Comparison (Checkboxes select/deselectable!)

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The energy management of the Blackview R7 is not really efficient. Compared to the rivals, we can see much higher consumption values, particularly while idling. At 9.2 watts, the maximum power consumption under load is on par with the Xiaomi Mi 5, which is equipped with a Snapdragon 820 SoC.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.17 / 1.41 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 1.83 / 3.21 / 3.45 Watt
Load midlight 5.67 / 9.16 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Blackview R7
3000 mAh
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
2500 mAh
Coolpad Torino S
1800 mAh
LG K10
2300 mAh
Honor 5C
3000 mAh
Xiaomi Mi 5
3000 mAh
Power Consumption
57%
45%
41%
31%
Idle Minimum *
1.83
0.63
66%
0.68
63%
0.89
51%
0.45
75%
Idle Average *
3.21
1.37
57%
2.2
31%
2.07
36%
1.68
48%
Idle Maximum *
3.45
1.71
50%
2.26
34%
2.15
38%
1.71
50%
Load Average *
5.67
2.82
50%
3.47
39%
3.46
39%
6.7
-18%
Load Maximum *
9.16
3.36
63%
3.71
59%
5.18
43%
9.18
-0%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

Because of the high consumption, particularly under load, the Blackview R7 manages a battery runtime of only 6 hours and 52 minutes in our WLAN test at an adjusted display luminance of 150 cd/m². This is not a bad result, but some of the rivals have much more stamina.

The provided 18-watt power adapter (9V, 2A) needs only about 90 minutes to charge an empty battery.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
6h 52min
Blackview R7
3000 mAh
ZTE Blade V7 Lite
2500 mAh
Coolpad Torino S
1800 mAh
LG K10
2300 mAh
Honor 5C
3000 mAh
Xiaomi Mi 5
3000 mAh
Battery Runtime
WiFi v1.3
412
517
25%
397
-4%
453
10%
584
42%
504
22%

Pros

+ 1080p resolution
+ 4 GB RAM
+ 32 GB ROM
+ bright IPS panel
+ fingerprint scanner
+ LTE (band 20)
+ performance
+ price-performance

Cons

- build quality of the buttons
- speakers
- camera pictures with color cast
- weight
- back value/contrast display

Verdict

In review: Blackview R7. Test model courtesy of Blackview.
In review: Blackview R7. Test model courtesy of Blackview.

If you rate the Blackview R7 as what it is – an inexpensive mainstream smartphone and not really a flagship smartphone, our verdict is pretty positive. The internal storage of 32 GB and 4 GB of RAM are almost oversized for this price class. The combination with the Helio P10 SoC ensures a smooth system performance. Except for the dedicated buttons, even the chassis quality is convincing. 

Things we did not like that much include the pretty slow integrated microSD-card reader and the poor sound quality of the speaker. The 13 MP main camera, which is generally sufficient in practice, suffers from a strong color cast, which affects the picture quality – maybe this can still be fixed with a software update. A weight of almost 200 grams (~7 oz) is also quite a lot for a 5.5-inch smartphone.

The R7 cannot meet all the expectations created by the good specification sheet – there are just too many compromises. However, it is still a good overall package for a street price of around 160 Euros (~$180).

Blackview R7 - 09/05/2016 v5.1
Marcus Herbrich

Chassis
84%
Keyboard
68 / 75 → 91%
Pointing Device
88%
Connectivity
43 / 60 → 72%
Weight
88%
Battery
89%
Display
80%
Games Performance
23 / 63 → 36%
Application Performance
39 / 70 → 56%
Temperature
89%
Noise
100%
Audio
50 / 91 → 55%
Camera
61%
Average
70%
80%
Smartphone - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Blackview R7 Smartphone Review
Marcus Herbrich, 2016-09-13 (Update: 2018-05-15)
Andreas Osthoff
Andreas Osthoff - Senior Editor Business
I grew up with computers and modern consumer electronics. I am interested in the technology since I had my first computer, a Commodore C64, and started building my own PCs after that. My focus here at Notebookcheck is the business segment including mobile workstations, but I also like to test new mobile devices. It is always a great experience to review and compare new products. My free time is filled with a lot of sports, in the summer mainly on my bike.