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Huawei Ascend P1 review

Budget phone maker attempts to blag an upgrade to business class

The Ascend P1 comes with a camera sensor rated at 8-megapixel power, with the phone producing some fine, sharp and detail-packed images.

And the video player captures 1080p footage as well, so you might want to stick a larger SD card in your basket when buying the thing.

Camera

Huawei Ascend P1 review

Huawei's made plenty of customisations to the standard, rather bland Android 4.0 camera app, and very nice it all is too.

A slide-out menu lets you add in piles of image effect filters, engage the oh-so-hilarious facial distortion tools, or get a little more technical with amendments to the white balance, ISO, exposure, saturation, contrast and brightness.

Huawei Ascend P1 review

As well as the useless negative and posterize filter effects you do get some decent retro options, which come in a few varieties and do indeed add some pleasing depth to the images.

Huawei Ascend P1 review
Even with no fiddling whatsoever, the Ascend P1 generates some cracking photos.

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Detail is great on the 1836x3264 images, with little in the way of compression noise or artefacts.

Huawei Ascend P1 review
There's an HDR option in here, which does a nice job of boosting contrast and brightness, pulling out more in the way of detail from the shadows.

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HDR is a bit of a pain to use as you need to hold the phone very, very still to avoid the images emerging blurry, so it's best saved for landscapes and exceptionally interesting clouds.

Huawei Ascend P1 review
Internal pics are still pretty good, although obviously not as vibrant as ones captured in clearer light.

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Huawei Ascend P1 review
And there are plenty of comedy distortion effects to play with. How amusing. These work when recording video, too, if you can get your subject to stay relatively still so the sensor can lock onto the face.

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Huawei Ascend P1 review
One taken with the retro Lomo filter activated. Forget the hipster connotations and you can't help but be impressed by the increased colour depth it generates.

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Huawei Ascend P1 review
This is what you get from the front-facing chat camera, which manages decent shots at 720x1280 resolution.

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Huawei Ascend P1 review
The burst mode is a bit of a disappointment, though.

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Rather than capturing a sequence of shots and letting us suggest the best one as part of the previewing process, the P1 just dumps all the burst captures to its memory, leaving you to manually delete them all later, which takes some of the fun out of the burst-capturing scene.

Video

The 1080p video footage is excellent, but at around 200MB for a minute of video, you'd expect it to be. Moving water is captured with ease, details like hair and grass, which many other supposedly high-end mobile sensors gloss over even at 1080p resolution, look great when captured with the P1, plus the frame rate's solid and reliable.

Huawei Ascend P1 review

If we had to pick a hole in the video output it'd be a moan about the autofocus, which struggled on occasion to focus quickly. But for the most part it's a great camera to use across the board.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory4 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA, UMTS, HSPA+
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyAscend P1
Cellular Generation3.9G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution8 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameHuawei
Screen Size10.9 cm (4.3")
Screen Resolution540 x 960
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)110 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerTexas Instruments
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Operating System VersionAndroid 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density256 ppi
Front Camera Resolution1.3 Megapixel
Height129 mm
Width64.8 mm
Depth7.7 mm
Radio TunerYes
ManufacturerHuawei Technologies Co., Ltd
Product NameAscend P1 Smartphone
Processor Speed1.50 GHz
Product LineAscend P1
Screen TypeOLED
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Ambient Light Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Proximity Sensor, Digital Compass
Manufacturer Part Number0003402620
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.huawei.com
Marketing Information

7.69mm slim body

Huawei unique molding&casting technology makes P1 smart as well as fashion.

64.8mm Narrow frame Design

64.8mm narrow frame offers you the most comfortable handle. can easily play it with single hand.

Dual core 1.5GHz CPU

A dual core 1.5GHz cpu, together with optimal software makes P1 the fastest model in class, capable to handle 3D games effectively.

Super AMOLED High definition screen

4.3-inch Super AMOLED qHD (960 x 540) screen with Auto rotate feature powered by G-sensor. These features provide you with a better viewing experience.