In this review, I will be going through my experience using the new Samsung Galaxy A34 5G (Rs. 45,999 for 8/128GB). It is a cheaper version of the more popular Galaxy A54 costing NRs. 10000 less. So, usually what happens with Samsung midrange phones is, they are launched at a slightly inflated price but in a month or two, the price does go down, making it a sensible option for someone looking for a Samsung brand.
With the Galaxy A34, I feel like Samsung has made a lot of ‘right decisions’. But at the same time, some things about it are very strange, considering its premium price. So, should you buy the Galaxy A34? Or should you wait for the price drop? Let’s find out in our review here.
Samsung Galaxy A34 5G Specifications:
- Body: 161.3 x 78.1 x 8.2 mm, 199 gm, Plastic back/frames, Glass front, IP67 dust/water resistance
- Display: 6.6-inches AMOLED, 120Hz refresh rate, Gorilla Glass 5
- Resolution: FHD+ (2400 x 1080 pixels), 390 PPI, 20:9 aspect ratio
- Chipset: MediaTek Dimensity 1080 (6nm mobile platform)
- CPU: Octa-core:– 2x Cortex-A78 (2.6 GHz)– 6x Cortex-A55 (2.0 GHz)
- GPU: Mali-G68 MC4
- Memory: 6/8GB LPDDR4X, 128/256GB UFS 2.2 storage
- Rear Camera: Triple-camera;
– 48MP primary shooter, OIS
– 8MP ultra-wide lens
– 5MP macro sensor
- Front Camera: 13MP
- Audio: Stereo speaker, No headphone jack
- Security: In-display fingerprint sensor (Optical)
- Sensors: Accelerometer, Geomagnetic, Gyro, Light, Proximity
- Connectivity: Dual-SIM (Nano), WiFi 5 a/b/g/n/ac (Dual-band), Bluetooth 5.3, GPS / AGPS / Galileo / Glonass / QZSS, USB Type-C, NFC, 4G LTE (VoLTE), 5G
- Battery: 5000mAh with 25W fast charging (no charger inside the box)
- Color Options: Light Green, Black, Light Violet, Silver
- Price in Nepal: Rs.
Samsung Galaxy A34 5G Review:
- Octa-core MediaTek Dimensity 1080 (6nm)
- 6/8GB LPDDR5 RAM, 128/256GB UFS 2.2 storage
- Android 13 with OneUI 5.1 on top
- 4 generations OS, 5 years of security updates
The Galaxy A34 comes with a more reliable Dimensity 1080 chip, which is not just better than the Exynos 1280 that the previous gen Galaxy A33 came with, but its performance is even superior to the Exynos 1380 that the more expensive A54 offer. So, without any surprise, the A34 performs well in regular everyday tasks.
I also found the overall game stability and fps numbers are maintained well on the A34 compared to the A54. Take games like Genshin Impact for example where playing in Medium settings and 30 fps, the A34 easily attains 30 fps with 96% overall game stability while the A54 could achieve 25 fps on average with comparatively more stuttery gameplay.
|Galaxy A34||Galaxy A54|
|Genshin Impact||Graphics: Medium|
Frame Rate: 60fps
Frame Rate: 30fps
|Asphalt 9||Graphics: High Quality|
Frame Rate: 30fps
|Injustice 2||Graphics: Default|
Frame Rate: Default
|Mech Arena||Graphics: Ultra|
Frame Rate: No Limit
Even in other relatively less demanding games like PUBG, and Asphalt 9, the gaming results on the A34 are better than the A54. Plus, the Dimensity 1080 is even optimized to run a few higher fps games which is not the case with the A54. So, Samsung’s decision to not go with their in-house Exynos chipset here is a good decision.
- 161.3 x 78.1 x 8.2 mm, 199 gm
- Glass front, Plastic back/frames
- IP67 dust/splash resistant
Next, I like its design too. And the reason for that is it looks like the more premium S23 series. Someone who cannot afford the more expensive Samsung phones, they are getting a premium-looking device at a much lower price, so it’s a good thing for them.
Apart from that, the build quality of the A34 is good too, even though it is made of plastic. Samsung likes to call the material ‘Glasstic’, but don’t be fooled, it’s plastic that looks like glass, so it’s basically plastic.
I do appreciate that the weight distribution here is even across the chassis. So ergonomically, it feels good on the hands. Other than that, this matte back does not catch smudges or scratches easily, the buttons are placed in a comfortable position, and more importantly, the A34 is one of the cheapest phones to come with IP67 ingress protection, so I wouldn’t complain about a lot regarding the design.
- 6.6-inches FHD+ AMOLED
- 120/240Hz refresh/touch sampling rate
- Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection
I do not have many complaints about the display, apart from the teardrop notch and the big bezels. Overall, this AMOLED Full HD screen is really nice. It’s bright, the colours and contrast look great, and the viewing angles are wide too.
I did not find any lags or stutters in the UI or anywhere else, so it’s safe to say that Samsung has optimized the display well. Also, this time, Samsung has bumped the refresh rate from 90Hz to 120 Hz on the A34, which is a welcome upgrade.
Samsung also provides an in-display fingerprint sensor on the A34 which I prefer over a side-mounted one. Over the years, Samsung has improved its fingerprint sensors and the one on the A34 is actually fast and pretty reliable.
- Triple camera setup at the back
- (48MP main, 8MP ultrawide, 5MP macro)
- 13MP selfie camera (Infinity-V notch)
Day and Night photos
The camera is another aspect where Samsung holds its ground, at least when it comes to the primary camera. Its 48MP camera can take nice pictures with a pleasing color tone, and ample dynamic range, and the onboard OIS helps maintain sharpness very well.
The thing is, Samsung balances the colors and shadows really well and shows consistent results for its class whether you are shooting during daytime or nighttime!
The portraits look good too!
Even the portraits are pretty nice. Sometimes they turn out to be a bit warmer than I like, but most times, the results are okay to share on social media and stuff. Likewise, the phone produces vibrant selfies too.
But, a meh 8MP ultrawide with no Autofocus and 4K recording
Samsung has topped an average 8MP ultra-wide camera here. You will find the ultra-wide shots miss out on the level of sharpness and there’s a little bit of color shift from the primary images too. Plus, there is also no 4k recording option in the ultra-wide camera.
But overall the video-graph side of things looks good here. First of all, Samsung is the only brand in this price bracket to offer a 4k 30 fps recording option from the selfie camera. And even from the back, I found it to produce good quality 4K videos with very little cropping. There’s no stabilization, but the overall quality is quite nice.
Anyway, adding more on the reliability front is Samsung’s OneUI, which provides a pleasing experience. Apart from 4 years of OS updates and 5 years of security updates that Samsung has promised, you don’t get a lot of bloatware apps here, no annoying Ads and everything from dark mode to system elements is well optimized here. So, it’s safe to say that I am pretty satisfied with the software on this thing.
- 5000mAh with 25W fast charging
Battery- wise too, I am really impressed with the A34. That’s because I actually got better endurance on the A34 than on the A54. On normal usage, the phone was able to give me more than 7 hours of screen-on time, and on relatively heavier usage while mixing some gaming and photography, the phone would provide 6 hours of SoT, which is very impressive.
Charging it is not as fast as we get with most Samsung phones. It only supports 25 watts, with which it takes roughly around 1 hour and 25 minutes to fully juice up. Also, you don’t get a charger inside the box which adds to the cost a little bit.
The speakers on the Galaxy A34 are not good! The audio coming from it is just not clean, it’s noisy, and at the highest volume, it even distorts a little bit. So, I haven’t exactly enjoyed listening to music or even watching movies on this phone so much.
Samsung has cheaped out on the haptics as well. It has this buzzy vibration, which feels very cheap. I just wish Samsung had provided similar haptics as the A54 as it wouldn’t have cost Samsung that much to include one.
Samsung Galaxy A34 5G Review: Conclusion
It’s time for the moment of truth! Should you consider the Galaxy A34 or not? Here’s my answer—if you are looking for an all-rounder midrange phone that provides a bit of everything with only little compromises here and there, the A34 makes sense for you.
I think, at this point, the only thing that’s separating Samsung from other brands is its software commitment and brand value. And if that is important for you, going for the A34 honestly will not disappoint you. But you might be able to get the best value after the price cut and festive deals.
Anyway, look at the competition, if you want the best performance per dollar, the iQOO Neo 7 with Dimensity 8200 will give you the best value. Likewise, the Nothing phone (1) with its distinctive design, good cameras, and equally good display is something that you can consider. Want the best camera? You can go with the Google Pixel 6A which is now available at a discounted rate! So yeah… there are plenty of options to choose from in this price segment, but overall the A34 does so many things right for me to recommend.
- Meanwhile, also check out our video review of the Samsung Galaxy A34.
Samsung Galaxy A34 5G Review: Pros and Cons
- Beautiful AMOLED display
- Premium-looking design
- Reliable everyday performance
- Best-in-class software update policy
- Good main and selfie cameras
- Still has a waterdrop notch
- Terrible haptics
- Not-so-good speakers
- No charger in the box