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HONOR Magic 6 Pro launched with a crazy 180MP periscope camera

Don't expect great 100x shots, but what about 10x, 20x, and 30x snaps?
By
January 11, 2024
HONOR Magic 6 Pro series color options
HONOR
TL;DR
  • HONOR has launched the Magic 6 and Magic 6 Pro phones.
  • The Magic 6 Pro packs a 180MP 2.5x periscope camera.
  • This is the highest-resolution periscope camera we’ve seen on a smartphone.

We’ve heard murmurings for a while now that HONOR could be working on crazy periscope camera technology. Now, the company has launched the HONOR Magic 6 series in China, and the Pro variant indeed looks like a beast of a camera phone.

The Magic 6 Pro’s standout feature is easily the 180MP 2.5x periscope camera (1/1.49-inch, f/2.6), with HONOR saying this camera covers focal lengths from 68mm to 270mm (~11x). The phone also sports 100x digital zoom, but HONOR’s own marketing material (seen below) suggests that these images will still look horrible.

HONOR Magic 6 Pro 180MP camera zoom ranges
HONOR

Nevertheless, we’re keen to see what a 180MP periscope camera can do. After all, even a crop to 5x from this 2.5x camera should yield a 45MP image. But we hope this periscope camera can avoid the usual pitfalls associated with many ultra-high-resolution sensors (e.g. increased noise, reduced dynamic range).

The rest of the Magic 6 Pro’s camera system seems great on paper too. There’s a 50MP “Eagle Eye” main camera (1/1.3-inch) with a variable aperture (f/1.4 to f/2.0), while a 50MP camera handles both ultrawide snaps and macro shots. Switch to the front and you’ll find a pill-shaped cutout hosting a 50MP camera and a 3D ToF sensor for 3D face unlock.

Expect a suitably high-end experience elsewhere. There’s an IP68 rating, a Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, a 6.8-inch FHD+ 120Hz OLED screen, a 5,600mAh battery, 80W wired charging, and 66W wireless top-ups.

The new phone also brings the Magic OS 8.0 Android skin, and this software offers a number of nifty features. This includes call volume adjustments based on your environment, dragging content to a sidebar to share it with other apps, what appears to be HONOR’s take on Apple’s Standby Mode, and eye-tracking tech for opening some notifications.

What about the standard Magic 6?

HONOR Magic 6 official image
HONOR

The vanilla Magic 6 understandably makes a few compromises to reach a lower price point. For one, the triple rear camera system is downgraded. Expect a 50MP f/1.9 main camera (fixed aperture), a 32MP 2.5x telephoto camera, and a 50MP ultrawide lens.

Other notable cutbacks include a slightly smaller, 5,450mAh battery, slower charging (66W wired/50W wireless), no 3D ToF camera and 3D face unlock, and no eye-tracking shenanigans.

You’ve still got a Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, an FHD+ LTPO OLED screen (6.78 inches), and the Magic OS 8.0 software, though.

HONOR Magic 6 series pricing and availability

The HONOR Magic 6 series is currently available in China. The Magic 6 Pro starts at 5,699 yuan (~$802) for the base 12GB/256GB model. Expect to pay 6,699 yuan (~$943) for the 16GB/1TB model.

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Meanwhile, the standard HONOR Magic 6 will cost 4,399 yuan (~$619) for the 12GB/256GB device. Fancy more storage and RAM? Then the top-end 16GB/512GB device will retail for 4,999 yuan (~$703).