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Honor Magic 6 Pro: A Full Review

The Honor Magic 6 Pro, with its eye-catching design and high-end hardware, deserves to be considered among the top Android phones. Its standout features include a best-in-class display, a large battery, and a versatile camera system. However, the camera’s performance can be inconsistent, and the phone’s AI capabilities could use some refinement.

Pros

Cons

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Quick Look

Once a budget brand, Honor has now entered the premium market. The Honor Magic 5 Pro launch in 2023 marked its competition with Apple and Samsung.

Honor has since introduced a unique foldable phone, the Honor Magic V2, while maintaining a strong mid-range presence with the Honor 90. However, Honor is targeting the luxury electronics market.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

The Honor Magic 6 Pro, the latest flagship from Honor’s labs, is a step forward for this rapidly growing mobile manufacturer. The Magic 6 Pro is an upgraded Magic 5 Pro with a more daring rear design, an improved camera system, and new AI features.

The camera upgrade includes a powerful 180MP periscope telephoto lens, a 50MP wide lens, and a 50MP ultra-wide lens, all housed in Honor’s ‘Star Wheel’ camera notch. The phone’s internal hardware is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset. The beautiful 6.8-inch curved OLED display is enhanced by Honor’s proprietary eye-friendly screen tech.

The Magic 6 Pro’s battery is 10% larger than its predecessor’s, but the increased processing power required for the new AI features means that overall battery life may not improve. However, the Magic 6 Pro still matches or exceeds the battery life of the latest handsets from Apple, Samsung, and Google, and it charges faster too.

Despite the seamless integration of Magic Portal and the potential of Magic Capsule, Honor’s Magic OS software still falls short compared to Apple’s iOS and Samsung’s One UI. The Magic 6 Pro does not offer any generative photo editing features.

Priced at £1,099.99, the Magic 6 Pro is £150 more expensive than the Magic 5 Pro. However, considering its single storage configuration (512GB with 12GB RAM), the Magic 6 Pro is priced similarly to the equivalent Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus model, and it’s slightly cheaper than the iPhone 15 Plus and Google Pixel 8 Pro models with the same storage capacity. Like most Honor phones, the Magic 6 Pro is not available in the US.

In conclusion, the Honor Magic 6 Pro is undoubtedly one of the best Android phones of 2024, and the best phone Honor has released so far. However, if you’re used to the simplicity of other operating systems, think carefully before spending £1,099.99 on it.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Cost and Availability

Priced at £1,099.99 / €1299.90, the Honor Magic 6 Pro is available in the UK and Europe, but not in the US or Australia.

Honor’s newest flagship was unveiled in China on February 25, 2024. It hit the shelves in the UK and Europe on March 8, 2024. In these regions, the Magic 6 Pro comes in a single storage configuration – 512GB with 12GB RAM – and is priced at £1,099.99 / €1299.90.

To put things in perspective, the Honor Magic 5 Pro was launched for £949.99 / €1,199 in 2023. This means Honor has increased the price of its successor by a significant £150 in the UK, and €100 in Europe. However, this price point places the Magic 6 Pro on par with the Samsung Galaxy S24 Plus with the same storage variant in the UK. It also makes the phone slightly more affordable than the iPhone 15 Plus (£1,199) and Google Pixel 8 Pro (£1,179) with the same storage capacity.

As of now, the Magic 6 Pro is not available for purchase in the US or Australia.

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Key Features

Let’s take a glance at the main features of the Honor Magic 6 Pro:

FeatureHonor Magic 6 Pro
Size162.5 x 75.8 x 8.9mm
Weight229g
Operating SystemMagicOS 8.0, based on Android 14
Screen6.8-inch OLED, 120Hz
Resolution2800 x 1280 pixels
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
Memory12GB RAM
Storage512GB
Battery Capacity5,600mAh
Rear Cameras50MP (f/1.4-2.0) wide, 50MP (f/2.0) ultrawide, 180MP (f/2.6) telephoto
Front Camera50 MP (f/2.0)
Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

Honor Magic 6 Pro: A Look at the Design

The Magic 6 Pro, with its luxury watch-inspired camera module and IP68 water and dust resistance, is a large phone. Measuring 162.5 x 75.8 x 8.9mm and sporting a 6.8-inch display, it’s not for those who favor compact devices. However, despite its large screen, which is slightly larger than the iPhone 15 Pro Max, it’s not particularly heavy. Weighing in at 221g, it’s 11g lighter than the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, which also features a 6.8-inch display.

The design of the Magic 6 Pro builds on the Magic 5 Pro, which debuted Honor’s ‘Star Wheel’ camera module. The Magic 6 Pro’s Star Wheel design pays homage to cushion-shaped watches, jade congs, and baroque diamonds. Given the popularity of the former among luxury watchmakers in the 1940s, it’s clear why Honor has adopted this unique ‘squircle’ shape.

Moreover, this year’s Star Wheel module is more user-friendly. While the Magic 5 Pro’s rear camera module looked good, it wasn’t comfortable to hold. Thanks to its broader shape, the Magic 6 Pro’s Star Wheel is more comfortable and even more visually appealing.

While the Magic 6 Pro lacks titanium, it’s cheaper than the 512GB variants of the titanium-designed iPhone 15 Pro Max (£1,399) and Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra (£1,349). The Magic 6 Pro still offers IP68 water and dust resistance, aligning it with its competitors.

Available in Black or Epi Green in the UK and Europe, the Magic 6 Pro exudes a premium feel. The black variant features velvet matte glass, while the green variant boasts ripple classic leather. The ripples on the Epi Green variant provide a pleasant grip, making it a recommended choice.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Camera Review

The Honor Magic 6 Pro, like many high-end Android phones, places a strong emphasis on mobile photography. It stands out with a few unique features.

Firstly, the Magic 6 Pro’s 50MP wide lens boasts an adjustable aperture (f/1.4-2.0), a feature not seen on smartphones for some time. In standard lighting conditions, the phone uses an f/2.0 aperture, but it automatically switches to the wider f/1.4 aperture in low-light settings.

Another standout feature is the Magic 6 Pro’s impressive 180MP periscope telephoto lens (f/2.6), the largest sensor on a zoom lens seen on a smartphone to date. This lens offers 2.5x optical zoom, a step down from the 3.5x zoom of the Magic 5 Pro. However, the phone can achieve 5x lossless zoom by cropping images from the 180MP lens.

The Magic 6 Pro’s rear camera setup is completed by a 50MP ultra-wide lens (f/2.0), and it also features a large 50MP front-facing camera.

The telephoto lens performance is noteworthy. On a sunny day, photos taken with this lens were detailed and vibrant. At 1x, 2.5x, and 5x magnification, colors were realistic and subjects remained in focus. However, zooming beyond 10x is not recommended.

The variable wide lens also performed consistently. Photos were sharp, with an impressive depth of field and lifelike shadows.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

One issue with Honor’s camera software is its tendency to overcompensate certain colors, particularly lighter shades of green and blue. This can result in overly saturated skies or trees, and artificial blue light can pose a challenge at night.

While not a deal-breaker, the Magic 6 Pro doesn’t always balance colors perfectly. This may be due to the phone’s AI identifying certain environmental features and adjusting the shot composition accordingly.

The Magic 6 Pro’s portrait mode performance is better than most, and the 50MP front-facing camera is solid. Video can be recorded in 4K at up to 60 frames per second with any of the three rear camera lenses, while the 4K-compatible selfie camera tops out at 30 fps.

In summary, the Magic 6 Pro is a strong camera phone that ranks alongside the best for versatility, if not consistency. However, it lacks the AI-powered photo editing found on the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra and Google Pixel 8 Pro.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Display Review

The Honor Magic 6 Pro features a 6.8-inch OLED display with a 120Hz adaptive refresh rate, a standard for top-tier Android phones. However, this device stands out for two reasons.

Firstly, the Magic 6 Pro’s 6.8-inch display is curved, with edges that ‘overflow’ the sides of the device. While most current phones opt for flat-edged displays, Honor’s choice of a curved display on the Magic 6 Pro will undoubtedly attract some and repel others. It’s certainly unique.

Secondly, the technology behind the Magic 6 Pro’s display sets it apart. Like the Magic 5 Pro, Magic V2, and Honor 90, the Magic 6 Pro features Honor’s proprietary Circadian Night Display technology. This filters blue light to enhance sleep quality. Additionally, an impressive 4,320Hz PWM dimming cycle rate minimizes eye strain, making it a good choice for those who frequently use their phone late at night.

The Magic 6 Pro boasts a peak HDR brightness of 5,000 nits under specific conditions, though typical daily use will likely yield around 1,600 nits, which is still commendable.

In terms of durability, the phone’s display is safeguarded by Honor’s NanoCrystal Shield, claimed to be 10 times stronger than regular glass. While I couldn’t verify this claim, my Magic 6 Pro review unit consistently survived encounters with a pocket full of keys unscathed.

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Performance and Software Review

The Honor Magic 6 Pro is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, the same one found in the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra, OnePlus 12, and Xiaomi 14.

With 12GB RAM and 512GB storage, the Magic 6 Pro delivers top-notch performance across tasks. Whether it’s web browsing, messaging, gaming, or streaming high-quality videos, this phone handles it all with ease. Given its price range, you’d expect nothing less from a 2024 flagship phone.

The Magic 6 Pro stands out due to its software. Running on Honor’s Magic OS 8 skin atop Android 14, it offers a unique user experience.

One notable feature is Magic Capsule, similar to Apple’s Dynamic Island in both function and appearance. It’s a handy tool for controlling music, timers, notifications, and incoming calls.

A unique feature of Magic Capsule is its eye-tracking tech, allowing you to control parts of the UI with your eyes. Currently, this feature is only available in China, but Honor plans to roll it out internationally soon.

The Magic 6 Pro’s AI offering includes Magic Portal, part of what Honor calls the “world’s first intent-based UI.” It’s a shortcut feature that lets you switch between apps and services with a single swipe.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

In my experience, Magic Portal worked seamlessly and delivered accurate results. I appreciated the strong haptic feedback when tapping images and the way the page ‘tilts’ to share the screen with other apps.

However, the Magic 6 Pro lacks generative AI tools, a feature found in the latest flagships from Samsung and Google. This omission might become more noticeable as AI features become a standard measure for new flagship phones.

In terms of longevity, Honor promises four years of Android updates and five years of security updates for the Magic 6 Pro. This is less than the seven-year commitments made by Samsung and Google but equal to OnePlus’ commitment to the OnePlus 12.

Honor Magic 6 Pro: Battery Review

The Honor Magic 6 Pro comes with a competitive 5,600mAh silicon-carbon battery. This should provide about a day and a half of casual use. For comparison, the iPhone 15 Plus lasts two days, but among the priciest flagships, the Magic 6 Pro leads in battery life.

Honor’s newest flagship supports up to 80W wired and 66W wireless charging. However, it’s worth noting that no charger is included in the box. According to Honor, a full charge takes 40 minutes. This was confirmed in a test using the 100W charger that comes with the Porsche Design version of this phone.

From a completely drained state, the Magic 6 Pro reached 36% charge in 15 minutes and 70% in 30 minutes. A full charge took 46 minutes, faster than all iPhone 15 and Samsung Galaxy S24 models tested, but slightly slower than the Xiaomi 14 and OnePlus 12R. Charging speeds will be slower with a lower-wattage charger.

Honor Magic 6 Pro
Honor

Should You Purchase the Honor Magic 6 Pro?

Go for it if…

  • You’re after a top-tier display. The 6.8-inch curved OLED screen on this phone is large, luminous, and gentle on your eyes. You won’t find a superior display in 2024.
  • You prefer large phones. If you’re seeking a large-screened Android phone that isn’t too heavy, the Magic 6 Pro is as lightweight as 6.8-inch phones get.
  • You require a long-lasting battery. The Magic 6 Pro’s hefty 5,600mAh silicon-carbon battery provides around a day and a half of charge, which is remarkably impressive considering the power it offers.

Think twice if…

  • You’re accustomed to a simpler OS. While Honor’s Magic OS has improved, it still doesn’t match the simplicity of iOS or cleaner versions of Android. Consider this if you’re not prepared to adapt to a new system.
  • You’re interested in generative AI editing tools. If you’re excited about the idea of recomposing images post-capture, you might be disappointed by the Magic 6 Pro’s lack of generative AI editing tools.
Honor Magic 6 Pro review

Also Consider

The Honor Magic 6 Pro is a well-designed, highly capable, and thoroughly unique device. However, there are alternative phones to consider:

Honor Magic 6 ProSamsung Galaxy S24 UltraiPhone 15 Plus
Price£1,099.99$1,299 / £1,249 / AU$2,199$899 / £899 / AU$1,649
Display6.8-inch OLED6.7-inch AMOLED6.7-inch OLED
Cameras50MP wide, 50MP ultra-wide, 180MP telephoto (2.5x)200MP wide, 12MP ultra-wide, 50MP telephoto (5x), 10MP telephoto (3x)50MP wide, 12MP ultra-wide
ProcessorQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 for GalaxyApple A16 Bionic
Battery5,600mAh5,000mAh4,383mAh

Honor Magic 6 Pro Scores out of 100:

AspectScore out of 100Details
Design90The Honor Magic 6 Pro boasts a striking design. It has a premium, eye-catching design.
Display95The phone has a market-leading display. It has the brightest display around at 5000nits.
Camera85The phone has a snappy performance. It has solid top-end performance.
Performance90The large 5600mAh battery can deliver 6-7 hours of screen on time per charge. It has a strong battery life.
Battery Life90The phone’s AI offering feels underbaked. MagicOS 8 is an iOS dupe.
Software80The phone’s AI offering feels underbaked. MagicOS 8 is basically an iOS dupe.

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