|Launch Date||October 10, 2018 (Official)|
|Model||Eluga Ray 530|
|Operating System||Android v8.0 (Oreo)|
|SIM Slot(s)||Dual SIM, GSM+GSM|
|SIM Size||SIM1: Micro|
|Network||4G: Available (supports Indian bands)|
|Screen Size||5.7 inches (14.48 cm)|
|Screen Resolution||720 x 1440 pixels|
|Pixel Density||282 ppi|
|Display Type||IPS LCD|
|Screen to Body Ratio (calculated)||76.31 %|
|Processor||Quad core, 1.3 GHz, Cortex A53|
|Internal Memory||32 GB|
|USB OTG Support||yes|
|Resolution||5 MP Front Camera|
|Image Resolution||4128 x 3096 Pixels|
|Settings||Exposure compensation, ISO control|
|Shooting Modes||Continuos Shooting, High Dynamic Range mode (HDR)|
|Camera Features||Fixed Focus|
|Network & Connectivity|
|SIM Size||SIM1: Micro, SIM2: Micro|
|Network Support||4G (supports Indian bands), 3G, 2G|
|Wi-Fi Features||Mobile Hotspot|
|USB Connectivity||Mass storage device, USB charging, microUSB 2.0|
|Audio Jack||3.5 mm|
|Fingerprint Sensor Position||Rear|
|Other Sensors||Light sensor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer|
The Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 could have been a good phone in the price had the company paid a little more attention to the device as the performance is quite mediocre, the cameras are pretty average, and the battery life could have been better. However, the display is decent and the build quality is sturdy. If you are in the market looking for a phone, we suggest you completely ignore the Eluga Ray 530 and pick the Asus Zenfone Max Pro M1 by spending a little more.
Panasonic has been on and off with the smartphones segment, but in recent times, the company has stepped up the game and seems to be in no mood slow down as it is launching phones in various segment quite regularly. It now launched the Eluga Ray 530 which from the looks of it seem a good phone for the price. In our review, we shall find out if its worth the price you spend or not. Let’s get started.
The Panasonic Eluga RAY 530 sports 5.7-inches (1440×720 pixels) HD+ 2.5D curved glass display. It is powered by the MediaTek MT6739WA 64-bit SoC clocked at 1.3GHz 64-bit Quad-Core processor with PowerVR Rogue GE8100 GPU. There are a 3GB RAM and 32GB internal storage. It runs on Android 8.1 Oreo out of the box. In the camera department, there is a 13MP primary rear camera with LED Flash, f/2.0 aperture and a 5MP front camera with LED flash. It has a fingerprint sensor placed on the rear. Connectivity features include 4G LTE, Dual SIM, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, and GPS. A 3000mAh battery is on board.
Since we are talking about the budget phone, there will be compromises in terms of build quality. The Panasonic Ray 530 comes with a smooth matte finish at the back and fits perfectly in hands. The rounded edges don’t hurt your hands even after extended usage. The frame is made of metal so it offers good grip and doesn’t slip away from your hands. Since we have an 18:9 aspect ratio, the height and total ergonomics of the device resemble a phone that just packs a 5.5-inch in size. This also gives you an impressive screen-to-body ratio for media and gaming. It is in no way feels cheap or sub-par even when you compare it other offerings in the similar price segment.
Moving to placements, up front, you find the 5-megapixel selfie camera, ambient and proximity sensor, main earpiece. Down below the 5.7-inches screen are the three touch type capacitive buttons which are placed within the screen. You have the hybrid SIM slot on the left, while power on/off switch with Volume rockers on the right side. There is the 3.5 mm audio jack on top, while the microUSB port placed at the bottom. Flipping the phone to the rear is where you find the 13-megapixel dual rear cameras with LED flash, speaker grill, Fingerprint sensor, and Panasonic branding. The back panel isn’t removable. Overall, the build and design of the Eluga Ray 530 is quite impressive and does the job well for the price.
The Panasonic Eluga RAY 530 sports a 5.7-inches (1440×720 pixels) HD+ 2.5D curved glass display. Since the resolution is not full HD 1080p, the colors don’t look very accurate, and the text/images show hints of pixilation which is quite disappointing. The colors look a bit pale in reality which might annoy you when you play a game or watch movies. The difference is quite noticeable when you put the same resolution display side by side. Moving along, the viewing angles are decent enough, we didn’t notice any off angles or color shift and it is a good thing.
The 2.5D not just offers good grip but also adds to overall ergonomics. The brightness levels are good as well, we were able to access the content and text outdoors or even under direct sunlight. There is also an auto-brightness sensor which when enabled adjusts the brightness depending on ambient lighting. Thanks to the 18:9 aspect ratio, the gaming, and media consumption was a bliss. It doesn’t come with any sort of display protection, so you will be better off installing a screen guard which can prevent scratches to some extent. The display response is smooth; we didn’t notice any lag while scrolling. Overall, the display of the Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 is decent but nothing exceptional. We would have liked had the company bundled a full HD panel.
Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 is powered by the MediaTek MT6739WA Quad-Core processor 64-bit SoC clocked at 1.3GHz with PowerVR Rogue GE8100 GPU. The chipset is quite old and is also not an Octa-Core chip to handle everyday tasks without lag or stutters. It was able to handle tasks like calling, texting, social media, and other basic functions without any issues. Since it is an underclocked and underpowered chipset, it fails to handle resource intensive apps like Facebook, Messenger, Instagram. I mean, I noticed lag and frame drops during scrolling through browser and news feed which is very depressing. Quad-Core processor off late has become strictly limited to phone under Rs. 5,000 and Panasonic boldly offering it a smartphone that costs Rs. 9,000 is very disheartening. In short, the performance is a big let down.
Moving to the gaming department, we played a wide range of games like Asphalt Nitro, Temple Run 2, Subway Surfers and more. One thing that becomes evident is that the phone was able to handle medium levels games without throwing any lag or stutters. The phone comes irresponsive making us restart it again once before it functions normally. It comes with a fingerprint sensor and it is quite accurate in recognizing the fingerprint sensor. Overall, the performance of the Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 is mediocre at best.
In the camera department, the Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 packs a 13MP primary rear camera with LED Flash, f/2.0 aperture and a 5MP front camera with LED flash. The camera interface is simple; you will have to swipe between right and left to scroll through different modes like beauty, front camera, video and more. Given the good lighting conditions, the Eluga Ray 530 was able to perform decently with moderate colors and details in the images. Though they don’t really look sharp, and zooming in further loss of preserved details. During the age of dual and triple rear cameras, the Ray 530 comes with a single sensor missing out on features like portrait and it is a letdown. It also has a face beauty feature which softens the skin tones, and we aren’t a big fan of that.
Moving to low-light, the camera clicks moderate images and are not on the levels we would like. The pictures are noisy and lack proper details. The presence of LED flash doesn’t help much either. It can record 1080p videos, but the quality is pretty average. Moving to the front, there is a 5MP sensor which clicks acceptable photos and has nothing to brag about. Overall, the camera of the Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 is decent, but certainly not the best in the segment.
The Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 packs a 3000mAh in-built battery with no support for fast charge. With casual to moderate usage that includes calls, messaging, GPS, browsing, stream music/videos, the device was able to last until the end of the evening, however, you need to charge once again before you end the day. We didn’t notice any overnight battery drain or drastic drops as well. The stand-by timing was on the good side.
On the other hand, with heavy to continuous usage, the device was able to withhold until the afternoon which isn’t quite a feat. We managed to get a screen on time of over 3-4 hours consistently and proper battery optimization could have helped. As mentioned above, there is no idle drain when the device is left unused, and no drastic drains as well. There is a battery saver option which when enabled saves the battery during emergencies. Since it doesn’t support fast charging, with the bundled charger, the phone took close to 2 hours 45 minutes to charge completely from 1% to 100%. Overall, the battery department of the Ray 530 falls short when compared to other phones like the Redmi 6 Pro, Asus Zenfone Max Pro M1 and more.
The company is bundling a pair of earphones within the box and they are of decent quality. The loudspeaker is placed on the rear side, so the audio will get muffled when placed on a flat surface. The speakers quality is decent and is also loud enough to cover an entire room easily. The default music player could handle most audio formats. The audio quality, when tested with the bundled earphones, was good enough with clear bass and vocals.
In the video department, the device could handle most 1080p videos in any format. We installed MX Player to adjust the aspect ratio well, and the playback was smooth. We played content with 4G turned on and didn’t notice any heating or freezing issues. Overall, the audio and video department of the Eluga Ray 530 offers a decent experience.
The Panasonic Eluga Ray 530 runs on Android 8.1 Oreo with a custom interface. Though it is a custom interface, there is an app drawer but the icon pack and notification shade is not stock. We do like the custom icon pack and it isn’t cartoony. The custom notification shade functions similar to the regular stock Android, but the icons and arrangement are unique. You can also change the navigation buttons pattern from the system settings. Apart from Google native apps, other applications like music player, FM Radio, file manager, Daily hunt, Theme which allows you to change the look and feel. There is a system manager which lets you adjust launcher and customization settings.
You can’t uninstall the preloaded app unless you are rooted which in turn voids your warranty. The device comes with 3GB of RAM around which 1.18GB is free when just the default apps are running in the background. Since the interface is custom, it consumes quite a bit of RAM. However, the U.I Animations and transitions are smooth. We didn’t notice any lag or stutters in the UI while using the phone non-stop. The device was able to handle multitasking smoothly, it could run 4-5 apps without any issue. Overall, the software department of the Eluga Ray 530 is decent enough.