-great Full HD AMOLED Display
-great battery life
-very decent camera with lots of features
-fast fingerprint scanner


-no micro SD card slot
-cheap feeling buttons
-very heavily themed software experience

Our Rating
Bottom Line

While not without issues, the Meizu MX5 is still a solid performer overall with its fingerprint scanner being one of its biggest standout features.

Our Rating
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A big focus by smartphone manufacturers this year has been on offering consumers quality devices that don’t break the bank, and we’ve seen some fantastic new additions to this segment from the like of Asus, Alcatel OneTouch, and a slew of Chinese OEMs. The fact that high-end doesn’t necessarily have to mean expensive was really brought into the spotlight just this week however, with the ZTE Axon Phone, OnePlus 2. and the new Motorola flagships, the Moto X Style and Moto X Play, bursting on to the scene. Joining this intensely competitive arena now is Meizu, with their latest flagship offering. Does this device manage to stand out in this ever-growing and impressive crowd? We find that out, and more, in this in-depth Meizu MX5 review!


Meizu MX5-3

The Meizu MX5 retains a lot of the design language of its predecessor, and as such, also continues to feature a very familiar look with an inspiration that is obvious. Unlike previous iterations of this flagship line though, Meizu has gone from using a metal frame and plastic backing to a full metal unibody design that curves around the sides to meet the large display up front, allowing for the premium feel that is expected from a current generation flagship.

Meizu MX5-1

One easily noticeable difference in the design between generations is the presence of a physical home button up front, with an integrated fingerprint scanner, in the case of the Meizu MX5, replacing the capacitive home button found with its predecessor, which also doubled as a notification light. With this feature not available anymore, a notification LED is now included, found in its more traditional location above the display. The home button can feel a little cheap at times, which isn’t great, given all the different ways this button is used – as a home button, as a back button, and as a fingerprint scanner.

Meizu MX5-15

Taking a look around the device, on the right side is the power button below the volume rocker, placed to be within easy reach, and the dual SIM card slot can be found on the opposite side. The buttons may not be of the highest quality, but do offer a decent tactile feel and good responsiveness. The headphone jack is up top, and at the bottom is the microUSB port, flanked by a microphone and a single speaker unit.

Meizu MX5-21

While not the thinnest smartphone around, its 7.6 mm thickness makes it quite sleek, and its weight of 149 grams results in a device that feels substantial and comfortable in the hand. Despite its metal construction, the MX5 isn’t particularly slippery and provides a secure grip, and the overall handling experience is far better than what you might get with other smartphones with a similar build.


Meizu MX5-4

The Meizu MX5 comes with a 5.5-inch AMOLED display with a 1080p resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 401 ppi, and the display is protected by a Corning Gorilla Glass 3 panel, to keep things scratch-free. Meizu decided to ditch the rather odd 16:10 aspect ratio seen with its previous devices for the more standard 16:9, which is a very welcome change.

While Quad HD is dominating the high-end Android smartphone scene, the 1080p display of the Meizu MX5 certainly more than gets the job done. The display is beautiful, with AMOLED technology bringing everything we love about it, including colors that pop and are nice and saturated, deep blacks, and high brightness. The color temperature does lean towards the warmer side of things though, resulting in a slightly pinkish hue on white backgrounds. It may not be the sharpest display around, but the difference is hardly noticeable, and the media-viewing and gaming experience is an absolute joy.


Meizu MX5-8

Under the hood, the Meizu MX5 packs an octa-core MediaTek MT6795 (Helio X10 Turbo) processor, clocked at 2.2 GHz, and backed by the PowerVR G6200 GPU and 3 GB of RAM.

MediaTek processors may not entirely match up with the Snapdragons of the world, but in the case of the Meizu MX5, there were rarely any problems with performance. Opening, closing, and switching between apps is a breeze, and the device flies through the various elements of the UI. The device also handles multi-tasking and gaming very well, which hasn’t always been the case with Meizu devices and others that feature MediaTek processors. That said, a big contributing factor to this smooth performance is also the software optimization that Meizu has managed with the latest version of the FlyMe OS.


Meizu MX5-6

The phone is available in 16, 32, and 64 GB variants, but with the lack of expandable storage via microSD card, you will certainly be better off opting for the higher built-in storage options. The device also comes with a standard suite of connectivity options, along with 4G LTE support, but it is recommended to check for compatibility with your local network carrier first if you do decide to pick up this device.

Meizu MX5-19

As mentioned, the physical home button up front has different uses, with a press required for it to work as a home button, and a tap to make it function like a back button. Finally, the button also comes with an integrated fingerprint scanner, that is called M-Touch. The touch type implementation is certainly the one we prefer, and it works incredibly well on the MX5. It is really fast, making it very quick and easy to unlock the device and get into your homescreen. There have been no issues with the scanner failing to recognize the fingerprint, and it actually manages to feel faster than the implementations found with some of the other, more high-end, devices out there.

Meizu MX5-9

The single speaker at the bottom isn’t the best sounding out there, but is far from the worst. The audio can sometimes sound a bit tinny, but overall, it allows for a decent audio experience, and can certainly get very loud. As is the case with any bottom-mounted speaker though, it is fairly easy to cover it up when holding the device in the landscape orientation, but the curve along that side does alleviate this issue to some extent, even if only a little bit.

Meizu MX5-5

On the battery front, the Meizu MX5 comes with a 3,150 mAh non-removable battery, that allows for some impressive battery life. Regardless of your usage, you can always manage up to 4.5 hours of screen-on time, and the battery should allow for a full day of use for most users. Something odd is the fact that the “Phone Idle” mode seems to strain the battery a lot, which is very surprising. Since the battery life is still good, it isn’t a big concern, but the battery life should get even better if and when this bug is fixed.

Meizu MX5-20

There are few different battery saving modes built-in as well, with the default Balance mode functioning very well for the most part. Graphic-intensive gaming may require a switch to Performance mode, but the default setting otherwise keeps everything running smoothly. There is of course, a power saving mode available that lets you get that little bit of extra juice out of the battery. If you do run out of battery life, the MX5 comes with fast charging capabilities, called M-Charge, that will allow you to charge the device to up to 60% in just 40 minutes.


Meizu MX5-4

The Meizu MX5 comes with a 20.7 MP rear camera, with an f/2.2 aperture, and found below the camera is a dual tone LED flash and a laser-guided autofocus. The camera app is very simple, clean, and easy to use, with quick access to a bunch of different modes, like a full manual mode, that gives you granular control over aspects like shutter speed, ISO, exposure, and focus. Other modes include panorama, and Light Field, that takes a lot of shots fast at different focus points, allowing you adjust the focus after the fact.

Shooting in Auto mode allows for some good looking pictures, and it is actually quite surprising how nice they can look, with saturated colors and good detail. Dynamic range is good, but it is up to you to cater the shot correctly, so even if Auto mode is supposed to automatically adjust to take the best picture, that isn’t always the case.

Meizu MX5-23

Tapping on the viewfinder helps with the focus and the adjustment of light, but this can be very finicky. You have to make sure that you tap exactly on where you want the camera to focus, and adjust the light to that area. Being off by just a little bit can result in an image that is either too dark, or too bright, and it does require a few tries to get it just right, which can be frustrating. HDR helps in this regard, but does require a second or two to take the picture.

Overall though, when you do get it right, some great shots are possible. As expected, low light shots can be a little noisy and lacking in detail, but the images don’t look too bad either. Video recording is great on the MX5 too, recording at 30 fps, along with 4K recording available as well. Slow Motion video capture is also possible, at 100 fps, and even though that isn’t as slow as some other flagship smartphones, the quality is certainly impressive.

The device also comes with a 5 MP front-facing camera, which allows for some decent self portraits. Pictures have a good amount of detail, but one thing you do have to watch out for is the fact that it tends to prioritize the primary subject, making anything that is even slightly in the background a little blurry. Taking advantage of the front-facing camera is Beauty mode, with settings that lets you change the size of your eyes, make your face a bit slimmer, and more. This mode may not be practical or useful for everyone, but can definitely be fun to play around with.


Meizu MX5-5

On the software side of things, the Meizu MX5 runs its own customized FlyMe OS 4.5, based on Android 5.0.1 Lollipop. Of course, you’ll be hard pressed to find any stock Android and Material Design elements in this user interface, and overall, the software experience can take some getting used to.

For starters, there is no application drawer available, leaving users dependent on folders to stay organized and keep the homescreens from getting too cluttered. The Settings menu is very iOS-like in its implementation, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but is of course, very different from what you may already be familiar with. Trying to get to the Settings app itself can be a pain, as there isn’t a direct shortcut available in the Quick Settings menu in the notification dropdown, so you will have to make sure that the Settings icon is at placed at an easily accessible location on the homescreen.

The FlyMe OS may be one of the more simpler takes on Android, but it does pack some cool and useful features, like the ability to lock apps so that they require a pass code to get in to. As mentioned, the physical home button also doubles as a back button, but when it comes to opening the multi-tasking screen, it does get a little strange, since there is no dedicated Recent Apps key to be found. You will have to slowly swipe up from the bottom, to open what looks a lot like the iOS 6 used app dock. Previews of the apps isn’t available, but you can close them with a simple swipe up.


Display5.5 inch AMOLED
Full HD (1080x1920)
Density: 401ppi
ProcessorOcta-core MediaTek Helio X10
8 x 2.2GHz
Power VR G6200 GPU

Expandable: No
ConnectivityWi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth 4.1
SoftwareAndroid 5.0.1 Lollipop
Flyme OS 4.5
Camera20.7 MP rear camera with dual LED flash
5 MP front-facing camera
Battery3,150 mAh
Colorsblack, silver, gold
Dimensions149.9 x 74.7 x 7.6 mm
149 grams


Pricing and final thoughts

One of the key aspects of a device like the Meizu MX5 is its affordable price point, with the device starting at $339 for the 16 GB iteration, and going up to $459 for the highest 64 GB storage option. Available colors for the Meizu MX5 include black, gold, and silver.

Meizu MX5-2

So there you have it for this closer look at the Meizu MX5! The device may have some cosmetic issues, like the somewhat cheap feeling home button, but it does what it is meant to do amazingly well.

The performance is smooth, the display is beautiful, the battery life is impressive, the camera is reliable, the fingerprint scanner is fantastic and the overall build quality is actually very nice, allowing for a great feel in the hand. In the end, the Meizu MX5 is definitely a worthy competitor in the affordable smartphone space, but it might be easy to miss in the crowd, especially with the latest flagship devices that have launched over the last few days.

Buy now on Amazon
  • Ed Dunlap

    Good review! I have this phone, and can say that it addresses many of my issues with the MX4. Swiftkey still has some problems, but otherwise this is a very good phone. The simplified interface and form factor make for a comfortable device.

  • s2weden2000

    i like it (her) …

  • balcobomber25

    Your write up doesn’t match your scores at all. Seeing the scores I was expecting some complaints in terms of display, performance and camera. Yet in every one of those you had great things to say. Flyme isnt meant to be stock Android, it is meant to have it’s own unique look and feel.

    • LeeKjong

      good review but agree with you that’s a little harsh scores

      • balcobomber25

        I own the phone already. Her actual review was pretty spot on, except I don’t have any issues with the keys and I wanted this phone specifically for Flyme. But her scores have noting to do with what she wrote.

    • MinotaurNEON

      “If you bothered do any research” balcobomber25, you’d see that the author of the article itself is Team AA, not Krystal Key. Which is to say, it could be anyone or everyone on the AA staff. Perhaps the incredulous tone need not be so sharply directed at one person… or so sharp. I’m not a fan of taking this tone, but it’s possible to be critical without sharpening the knives. Especially when you’re just as fallible as everyone else.

      • balcobomber25

        I dont really care what you are a fan of. Do you think your someone of importance?

        My comments are directed at the person who appears in the video. The persons who words are echoed in the article. It wasn’t anyone or everyone at AA, it was Krystal speaking. If you click play on the video you will hear one voice and only one voice. If you are going to publish a review that makes no sense, expect people to call you out on it. And I wasnt the only one. Are you a fan of me speaking the truth?

      • Walter Warken

        I really don’t understand. One writing, one recording and one evaluate, this is so funny. :)


      Don’t bother yourself. This
      site has been very protective, favors and promote Motorola at all cost. They feel that
      MEIZU MX5 is a treat to the recent Moto X style and Play. That’s the more
      reason why they have to wait till the launch of the next generation Motorola to
      do their review for the MEIZU MX5. You see the scores, they were not even ashamed
      to give such a score for great phone like MEIZU MX5. I hate it when a site
      is bias, and this is very bias and favors every crap that is made in the US.

      • balcobomber25

        I usually stay away from sites like this for that exact reason. They have very little clue about Chinese phones. Gizchina is much better and they aren’t ashamed to be open and honest about their reviews.

      • Marc Perrusquia

        Every Android reviewer basically jacks off to Motorola. I learned through 2 defective Nexus 6’s and 3 defective moto 360’s that Motorola is a joke.

    • Swag Master

      I agree with you 100%. The Elephone P8000 got a higher score even though the build quality is questionable (see ITXtutor’s review of it).

  • Julian Casio Santana King

    A new reviewer! Nice thanks for your review

  • JD

    the back looks fat…

    • balcobomber25

      It isn’t, it is smaller than an Iphone 6 Plus.

  • Nicole88

    Krystle (did i spell correct?) I don’t understand, you have a such a nice comments for this phone but at the end booom, your score is only 7.4?

    • MinotaurNEON

      She didn’t author the article

      • balcobomber25

        She is in the video…..

  • Siralf

    Welcome Crystal, great review

  • MinotaurNEON

    Nice video review Krystal. I would like to point out that the actual article was authored by “Team AA” which is to say, they aren’t necessarily her scores.

    • balcobomber25

      I would like to point out she is the one in the video speaking about the phone, her exact comments are written in the article. A reasonable person would ascertain that she did the review.

  • Cool

    Why does every phone from that company have to look exactly like an iPhone? I mean there isn’t even an attempt to conceal it.

    I appreciate the hardware, and the design aesthetic, but how about something original? I know there’s only so many ways to make a smartphone look pretty, but come on.

    • balcobomber25

      Why does the Iphone 6 have to look just like the HTC One? I mean there isn’t even an attempt to conceal it. How about something original? I know there is only so many ways to make a smartphone, but come on!

      Meizu has been using this design since style since the original MX, which debuted back in 2011. They were also the first company to use flat icons in an OS, something Apple later copied.

      • Cool

        Ha. Repeating what I said with different phones. Very clever. I think I like you.

        Care to explain why their OS always looks like iOS too (no app drawer, etc)? And, honestly, flat icons (which I actually never brought up, but OK)? We could go back 30 years to several PC operating systems that used flat icons (flat is technically just a fad at the moment). At least HTC tries to differentiate itself from iPhone, though, yes, the last few models have been reminiscent. Honestly, I just don’t buy it. Everybody copies everybody, yes. I just wish some companies would try to stand on their own two feet and not ride another company’s coattails. That was really my main point. I’m sure I will get a long winded rebuttal from you because you seem to be yelling at everybody that has an opinion on it. That is just fine because I probably won’t be reading it.

        • balcobomber25

          Apple copies just as much from other companies as companies copy from them. That is the nature of the business. The Iphone 6 is a blatant copy of the HTC One. That is not a bad thing, it’s still a good looking phone. Apple has copied plenty from Android over the years as well.

        • Airyl

          “Care to explain why their OS always looks like iOS too (no app drawer, etc)?”

          – Because Chinese consumers prefer it over the normal app drawer configuration. Flyme is however much more customizable and feature filled than iOS ever was, so you could say iOS is what Flyme could be if the devs didn’t give a shit.

          “And, honestly, flat icons (which I actually never brought up, but OK)? We could go back 30 years to several PC operating systems that used flat icons (flat is technically just a fad at the moment).”

          -Yes, you might, but too many people think that Apple created that flat look.

          “At least HTC tries to differentiate itself from iPhone, though, yes, the last few models have been reminiscent.”

          -How exactly? Is it because they’re both made of metal? They look absolutely nothing like each other. Even the MX5 doesn’t look like the iPhone 6. If you were talking about something like the ZTE Blade S6, then yes, I can see it. But to say the MX5 is copying the iPhone is simply false.

          “Honestly, I just don’t buy it. Everybody copies everybody, yes. I just wish some companies would try to stand on their own two feet and not ride another company’s coattails.

          -See my point above? Meizu isn’t riding on anyone’s coattails at the moment. If you had said that 4-5 years ago you might have had a point, but now you just look foolish.

          “That was really my main point. I’m sure I will get a long winded rebuttal from you because you seem to be yelling at everybody that has an opinion on it. That is just fine because I probably won’t be reading it.””

          You won’t be reading it because you can’t accept that other’s have different opinions? Lol.

          • balcobomber25

            This is why our community is better, we don’t get too many of these iSheep there lol.

  • The Special Juan

    I just ate one of the tastiest pizzas I have ever had, fresh ingredients, perfectly cooked, quickly delivered, just the right amount of seasoning. A beautiful pizza that I choose to order. I have nothing negative to say about it.

    That pizza could easily score a 9.

    Yet is wasn’t a steak and chips, so I score it 7.4

    • balcobomber25

      Thats about the logic in this review.

      I just test drove a brand new car. It had one of the greatest engines ever in its class. The seats were incredibly comfortable. Their was plenty of cargo space. Its easily a 9.5.

      But I prefer red cars and this one was blue. Also it’s not a Ferrari. I’ll give it a 7.4

  • Rushan

    Not getting with the final score….

    • balcobomber25

      It is an excellent phone, her final score should have been an 8.5/9 with the way her actually article was written.

      • Walter Warken

        For sure. Final score for Meizu M2 Note is 8.0 here on AA, and for Meizu MX5 just 7.4. No logic at all.

  • DaviD

    You can get this phone on aliexpress through $330 and not with high price on Amazon which is around $500.
    This article is advertisement for the Amazon seller!

  • Walter Warken

    To be honest I will also say all written and spoken does not match score and you need to reconsider your evaluation. At least 8.7. About copying, oh yes 4-5 years ago yes, but now all the phones more or less have the same look.

  • Alexandros Vourlakos

    basically you can’t buy the base 16gb model because you will run out of storage instantly, and at 450 euros (in europe) there better phones out there..

  • david

    Hello friends.
    recently a bought MEIZU MX5 who still didnt sent. now i think it is
    good. some websites write diffrent frequencies of the phone. can someone confirm the real 3G and 4G freaquencies of the phone?

  • RockSteady

    So, can anyone give me a clear answer, whether I should buy it or not?! I do really like this smart. But I dont know anything about this company. I recently sold iPhone 5 and fell in love with this smart. And I dont really care about copying and stuff like that. I need perfomance and software. Thanks 4 help :)

  • RockSteady

    Balcobomber25 how can I get in touch with you? Maybe skype? I need help in choosing smart..

  • David Camacho

    @ balcobomber25 how’s your experience with the phone so far? Mainly the OS and build quality of the phone

    • balcobomber25

      Sorry I missed this comment. I still use it to this day. The OS has been very good, Meizu released about 12 OTA’s (including one last week) since July. Build quality has been excellent, I don’t use a case and after about 9 months of use it has 2 small scratches and one crack. All of this while surviving about two dozen drops and the abuse of a 2 year old.

  • hmm this is the most confusing review ever , by that i mean the rating doesn’t reflect the review finds ,actually makes the site seem kinda unreliable (the phone is great in this and that for the price blah blah) but the score is low duh! Too bad this site is failing too