- Great camera with both Auto and Pro modes, as well as OIS
- 3GB of RAM
- Modern design and durable glass and aluminum finish
- Good battery life
- Dual SIM
- Display too reflective
- Big for a 5-inch phone
- Large display bezel
- Physical camera rocker tiny
Manufacturers have noticed increased interest in smartphone camera quality, and it’s evident by camera advancements. With its latest Vibe Shot, Lenovo has taken it a step further. With an impressive 16-megapixel BSI (Back-Side Illuminated) sensor, triple LED flash, infrared autofocus, special dual-step shutter, rocker switching between automatic and manual mode, and a design that accentuates the rear shooter, the Vibe Shot has one of the most impressive cameras on the market. Even the Lenovo Vibe Shot’s 8-megapixel selfie camera is above average.
The camera is not the only area that impresses as the Vibe Shot is above average in many other criteria. It comes with a 5-inch Full HD display, octacore Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor, 3GB of RAM and 32GB of memory storage, Android OS 5.1 (Lollipop) with a slightly modified Vibe UI, and a lush battery with the capacity of 3000mAh. This promising list of specifications holds up in everyday use, which is why the shortcomings of this compact camera and smartphone hybrid are hard to spot.
Build & Design
The Vibe Shot has aluminum rims, glass on the front surface and an aluminum-glass combination on the back in order to make its finish equal parts modern, unique and credible. The device looks like a smartphone from the front and a camera from the back, but what is important is that it offers exceptional toughness. It is clear that this is a top-range device. Its dimensions are average for a 5-inch device (142 x 70 x 7.3 mm, or 5.59 x 2.76 x 0.29 inches), while its mass of 145 grams (5.11 oz) is above average. The weight is perfectly understandable as the Vibe Shot features glass and metal construction, as well as an exceptionally large battery. The strictly squared design with just slightly rounded edges offers a modern appearance and provides a firm grip.
Unfortunately, the surfaces of this phone are fingerprint magnets, particularly the back surface. Given that it is made of glass and aluminum, you can easily wipe off smudges, and Lenovo includes a protective plastic cover for the camera lens.
The aluminum back holds the camera lens, as well as the triple LED flash, the infrared autofocus sensor and the Lenovo logo. Capacitive touchscreen keys are located in the front bezel under the display (Menu, Home and Back), increasing the display’s functional space. This is a praiseworthy, but not typical, detail for Android OS 5.0 devices, and it necessitates a large display bezel on the Vibe Shot. There is a speaker above the display, along with a front-facing selfie camera and the usual set of sensors.
The left side of the Lenovo Vibe Shot holds a slot for two microSIM cards (this is a dual SIM phone) and a microSD card slot. All the physical keys are located on the right side. Apart from the usual power key and the volume rocker, there is also the designated two-step camera shutter button and a tiny rocker that switches between automatic and manual camera modes. It can also be used to wake up the device from stand-by, which is a practical feature for those users who find the Power key to be too low for their liking.
The top side holds the audio jack and the secondary microphone for noise reduction, while the bottom side includes the lanyard loop and a microUSB port with speaker perforations surrounding it.
The 5-inch IPS display on the Lenovo Vibe Shot comes with Full HD resolution (1080 x 1920 pixels), resulting in a 441 ppi pixel density. Such pixel density offers quality image sharpness at a regular viewing distance and individual pixels cannot be spotted even when used close-up. The phone’s IPS display offers highly precise color accuracy with realistic saturation and a comfortable dynamic range, which is particularly suitable for viewing photographs on the phone’s screen. This means that the images observed on Vibe Shot’s display will look almost identical when transferred to a computer with a quality display.
All of this is a result of the screen’s above average contrast, as black tones are indeed dark and white are very light. You may object to inconsistent contrast over the entire surface of the screen, however. The highly reflective screen surface means a portion of the viewing angle is reduced, which is mostly evident when the phone is exposed to direct sunlight. As the device also has a high max brightness, amping it up can help to resolve any issues. Overall, the Vibe Shot’s display is above average compared against other smartphones, especially Android flagships.