Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: What’s the best budget Honor phone right now?

We compare four of Honor’s good-value budget phones, the Honor 5C, Honor 5X, Honor 6A and Honor 6X, to see what the difference is in terms of specs and features.

Honor has just launched its new Honor 6A smartphone here in the UK, which further extends its solid catalogue of budget blowers. This 5-inch Android mobile serves up HD visuals, a 13-megapixel rear camera, Huawei’s brilliant Emotion UI 5.1 interface and a solid metal construction for just £150. All-round respectable value for money.

So how does the Honor 6A compare to three of the company’s other budget handsets, namely last year’s Honor 5C and Honor 5X as well as the dual-lens camera-packing Honor 6X, launched earlier in 2017? Should owners of last year’s Honor phones consider and upgrade to the Honor 6A, or go for a 6X instead? Here’s our full comparison review, so you know which affordable mobile is best for you.

For our pick of the best affordable mobiles in 2017, check out our full best budget phones round-up.

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Specs

Honor 5C Honor 5X Honor 6A Honor 6X
Screen size 5.2-inches 5.5-inches 5-inches 5.5-inches
Screen resolution Full HD (1920×1080) Full HD (1920×1080) HD (1280×720) Full HD (1920×1080)
Weight 156 grams 158 grams 150 grams 162 grams
OS Android 6.0 w/ EMUI 4.1 (upgradeable) Android 6.0 w/ EMUI 4 Android 7.0 w/ EMUI 5.1 Android 6.0 w/ EMUI 5 (upgradeable)
Front camera 8-megapixels 5-megapixels 5-megapixels 8-megapixels
Rear camera(s) 13-megapixels 13-megapixels 13-megapixels 12/2-megapixels
Processor 1.7GHz/2.0GHz octa-core Kirin 650 1.2GHz/1.7GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 616 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 2.1GHz/1.7GHz octa-core HiSilicon Kirin 655
Memory 2GB RAM 2GB RAM 2GB RAM 3GB RAM
Storage 16GB w/ expandability up to 128GB 16GB w/ expandability up to 128GB 16GB w/ expandability up to 128GB 32GB w/ expandability up to 256GB
Battery 3340mAh 3000mAh 3020mAh 3340mAh
Extras Dual SIM, fingerprint sensor, NFC Dual SIM, fingerprint sensor Dual SIM Dual SIM, fingerprint sensor, NFC
Price £155 £150 £150 £199

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Design

If you’re after a metal mobile, then good news! All four of these Honor mobiles offer an aluminium design, which means solid construction with no hint of flex and reassuring resistance to scuffs and scrapes.

The Honor 6A is our favourite in terms of comfort levels. This 5-inch phone is the most compact handset in this comparison, with curved edges to fit your hand naturally. The Honor 6X is also quite curved, certainly when placed next to the rather straight and stiff Honor 5X and Honor 5C. That said, the 5X and 6X are also beasts at 5.5-inches. Definitely a handful.

None of these budget mobiles are water resistant, although they’re all moderately splash proof. You can use them in a bit of rain without worrying too much.

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Screen and media

Although the Honor 6A is the freshest phone here, it also sports the lowest screen resolution. The 5-inch IPS LCD display is a 720p panel, while the other mobiles here offer Full HD visuals.

The reason for this dip in resolution is likely the reduced screen size. After all, the other Honor phones here pack larger panels, at 5.2 or 5.5-inches. Therefore, you’re less likely to notice the 720p resolution on the Honor 6A. That said, it’s a shame to miss out on the supreme sharpness of a Full HD screen on this new device, especially as rival sets such as the Moto G5 and Vodafone’s Smart V8 deliver those crisp visuals.

Still, all four Honor phones here use the same IPS LCD technology, which offers decent viewing angles and reasonably realistic colour reproduction. The Honor 5C can be a struggle to use outdoors as its top brightness leaves a little to be desired; a problem not found on the fresher phones here.

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Features

All four of these mobiles use Android OS, topped with Huawei’s own Emotion UI custom overlay. The older Honor 5C shipped with last year’s Marshmallow version on board, although has since received an update to Nougat to match the Honor 6A and 6X. Likewise, the Emotion UI version has been upgraded to EMUI 5, so you get all of the cool new features including (thank the lord above) an apps tray for storing your software away. Check out our EMUI 5 review for all you need to know about Huawei’s software.

Sadly the same update hasn’t come to the Honor 5X, which is stuck on the older software seemingly forever. Most perturbing.

When it comes to security, the Honor 5C and 6A don’t feature a fingerprint sensor, unlike the other two handsets. Both the Honor 5X and 6X rock a scanner on their rear ends, for a quick and efficient means of unlocking your phone and checking your notifications.

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Performance and battery life

Each of these budget Honor blowers packs a different mobile processor, be it one of Huawei’s own Kirin chipsets or a Qualcomm Snapdragon platform.

As you might expect, the older phones here are starting to show their age somewhat. The Honor 5C and Honor 5X both stutter and stammer somewhat, which means users might be tempted to upgrade to the newer Honor 6A and 6X. Both of which perform smoothly during everyday operation.

Of course, the Honor 6X is likely to be the last to show signs of ageing, thanks to the extra memory. This will keep your apps opening quickly and running without a fuss.

As for battery life, the Honor 6X and Honor 5C both offer up to two days of use per charge, if you don’t hammer them too hard. The Honor 5X isn’t far behind and we’re expecting the same performance from the 6A, which we’re yet to fully test. All four Honor phones use the older type of USB connection; no Type-C to be found anywhere.

Honor 5C vs Honor 5X vs Honor 6A vs Honor 6X: Cameras

The Honor 6X is the stand-out phone here, with its dual-lens 12/2-megapixel rear snapper. These two lenses work together to produce quite crisp images, with pleasing depth-of-field. Check out our Honor 6X camera review for samples and all you need to know.

Even though the other phones use a single lens, they all offer a strong camera experience for the price – comparable in fact to the 6X. They can cope with a wide range of conditions, while the new Honor 6A sports very fast Phase Detection Autofocus to quickly lock onto your subject and keep them sharp. You also get the option of shooting up to Full HD video, plus plenty of bonus camera modes to play around with. Expert snappers even get full manual controls, for video as well as photo.

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