So, I have been using the Vivo V17 Pro for quite a while now. I know it’s not just a late review, it’s a “late” late review but I am here with it anyways. To be very honest, I had been having mixed feelings about whether I should make a review out of it or not.
And that’s not only because I don’t see it as a worthy upgrade from the Vivo V15 Pro, but in the last 6 months, Xiaomi has launched the Redmi K20 Pro, Realme recently launched the X2 Pro, so on and so forth. Therefore, the competition has gotten even fiercer! Let’s find out more about the V17 Pro in this review.
Vivo V17 Pro Specifications
- Display: 6.44-inch (2400 × 1080 pixels) Full HD+ 20:9 Super AMOLED with 100% DCI-P3 color gamut, Schott Xensation UP glass protection
- Chipset: Snapdragon 675; 11nm
- CPU: 2×2.0 GHz Kryo 460 Gold & 6×1.7 GHz Kryo 460 Silver
- GPU: Adreno 612 GPU
- RAM: 8GB LPDDR4x RAM
- ROM: 128GB UFS 2.1 storage
- OS: Android 9.0 (Pie) with Funtouch OS 9.1
- SIM: Dual (nano + nano)
- Back Cameras:
– 48MP primary camera with f/1.78 aperture, Sony IMX582 sensor, 0.8μm pixel size, 6P lens, dual-LED flash
– 8MP 120° ultra-wide sensor with f/2.2 aperture with 2.5cm Super Macro
– 13MP Telephoto lens for 2X optical zoom, 10X digital zoom, f/2.5 aperture
– 2MP depth sensor with f/2.4 aperture
- Front Cameras:
– 32MP wide-angle front-facing camera with f/2.0 aperture, LED flash
– 8MP 105° ultra-wide sensor with f/2.2 aperture
- Security: In-display fingerprint sensor
- Dimensions: 74.7x159x9.8mm
- Weight: 201.8gms
- Connectivity: Dual 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 ac dual-band, Bluetooth 5, GPS/GLONASS, USB Type-C port, 3.5 mm audio jack, FM Radio
- Battery: 4100mAh with 18W Dual-Engine Fast charging
- Price in Nepal: Rs. 52,490
Now, what I have always liked about V-series in the past is how they bring some new stuff with every new phone.
The V11 Pro was the first mid-range phone to have an in-display fingerprint sensor, the V15 Pro was the first to introduce a pop-up camera. And not just that, all of the V-series had a good camera and a good design. The V15 Pro was even India’s highest-selling phone under 30,000 IC.
But I feel the Vivo V17 Pro, on the other hand, could have been much better overall. The first thing to talk about here is the choice of chipset. It’s the same Snapdragon 675 seen on the older V15. And this is one area I think Vivo made a big, big compromise.
In comparison, you get a much faster Snapdragon 855 on the K20 Pro and 730G on the OPPO Reno 2. And if you are buying a phone upwards of $400, the SD675 doesn’t make sense anymore.
The day to day performance like browsing, messaging, and playing light games is good. But its when playing high-end games, the Vivo V17 Pro takes a serious hit. You can only play PUBG smoothly in medium settings and HD graphics. Whereas, in the similarly priced K20 Pro, you can play it in the highest of settings.
Also, I might be nitpicking, but I didn’t quite like the design of the V17 Pro. Although Vivo uses a glass back, it feels way too heavy for a phone of this size. One reason could be its chunkier and wider pop-up camera that makes the phone non-ergonomic.
I also would find a lot of dust to be accumulated in the notch, so I had to constantly clean it before taking a selfie. Interestingly, there’s a dedicated Smart Button to activate Google Assistant or Vivo’s own “Jovi” AI assistant.
Display & Battery
However, the front of the Vivo V17 Pro is really good. It is one of the best things about the phone. It uses Samsung’s E2 AMOLED panel and the quality of it is just so amazing. It’s definitely better than the K20 Pro.
While we are talking about nice things, the battery is also good. This time, there is a 4100 mAh battery on the V17 Pro.
And we know that Snapdragon chipsets are power efficient and the huge battery paired with an AMOLED display is sure to give you good battery life and it certainly does. On normal usage, I got over a day while on medium usage, it gave me around a day’s worth of juice.
About the cameras, you get a total of 6 of them. The back houses 4 cameras: a primary 48MP lens with Sony IMX 582 sensor, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens, a 13MP telephoto 2X zoom lens, and a 2MP depth sensor.
You can also do macro photography with its ultra-wide-angle lens. And this one is better than what we have been seeing lately on phones like Realme XT or the Redmi Note 8 Pro.
At the front, there’s dual camera setup: A primary 32MP lens and an additional 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens which I would not say is completely unique but certainly better than what we have been seeing.
That being said, the 48MP primary lens performs well. You get good details in the images and the colors look nice and punchy too. The color tone isn’t very accurate as the images shift between warmer and cooler hues, thus giving you inconsistent results at times. However, it’s not a big issue.
I also liked the portrait images from the Vivo V17 Pro. You get good subject focus and background blur. Edge detection, however, isn’t very accurate but is only visible if you zoom in the images.
The third lens for the wide-angle images produces good color and the images are fairly detailed as well.
The images from the 2X telephoto lens didn’t wow me a bit as I found them to be okay at best. The details aren’t that great so I didn’t find myself making use of the telephoto lens.
Selfies are super nice too. It’s Vivo, so we cannot expect the most natural of selfies, but they do look good regardless. The HDR feature in selfies works very well. Even when the background is exposed, the cameras work to balance it out.
Portrait selfies share the same story in terms of quality but the edge detection is not that proper.
You get wide-angle selfies here as well, which comes in really handy while taking group images.
And, comparing the cameras of the Vivo V17 Pro with the Reno 2 and the K20 Pro, I would say there’s a slight advantage in V17 Pro camera in its HDR capability, but the cameras are nothing extraordinary or at least they don’t stand out among the others in several other aspects. Like, say portraits, where I think K20 Pro does a better job overall.
Vivo has also introduced a new camera interface here, which is a bit confusing. There is a dedicated portrait mode but you can also click portrait images from the photo option too.
Similarly, there is a beauty mode, which you can only find inside portrait mode and it just warps your face at random to make it more “beautiful”. You get an ultra-wide-angle option in the portrait mode, but you cannot click wide-angle portraits.
So, the new camera app isn’t refined as I would’ve liked. And, add that to the Funtouch OS which, I think Vivo has to, like seriously, revamp its UI/UX in its upcoming products.
Okay, by now it’s evident that I wouldn’t recommend the Vivo V17 Pro. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad phone, but it’s just that the competition has gone better, a lot better and Vivo isn’t catching up. Also, they made a huge compromise in the form of performance, whereas other smartphones are providing better SoCs at this price range.
On a different note, I feel like there isn’t any WOW factor with the phone too, which Vivo V-series used to have. And this really reflected with the sales V17 Pro has managed to generate in comparison with V15 Pro that launched 6-months ago.
OPPO’s F-series had this same issue earlier, and they have now abandoned the F-series and brought the Reno series in the mid-range segment with a cleaner design and premium features. So, maybe Vivo could do the same with its “Nex” series or maybe improve the next iteration of V-series by providing competitive specs.
Vivo V17 Pro – Pros & Cons
- Excellent camera performance (both front & back)
- A gorgeous, clean, and vibrant display
- A decent battery life
- A chunkier and heavier design & build
- The chipset should’ve been better
- Vivo’s Funtouch OS isn’t consistent overall