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Nokia 5300 Xpress Music
Nokia is known for its creativity in their phone models. The 5300 is no exception to the rule. They seem to be releasing a new model every month. Their design team must be working overtime. Now the Nokia 5300 is not a new design nor will the interface be new to a regular Nokia user. In fact those who’ve used the 6270 slider will find this phone really easy to use. It runs on the same Series 40 UI and is part of the 'XPress Music' range of phones.
The 5300 is small and its roundish design not only makes it a cute looking phone but also easy to hold or store. It’s available in 2 colors–Red and Black. On the minus side it does look a little delicate (kind of like a woman’s powder compact). It has dedicated keys on its sides for playing, skipping, rewinding/forwarding and also for volume and the camera. The colored portion has a rubberized feel to it and that makes it little easier to grip.
The 5300’s slider is smooth and easily pops up and down. The rear panel is however, quite difficult to remove so try to avoid removing your SIM or memory card too often. Its 2.5mm earphone jack on the side is what really put me off till I checked the box, and what do you know, Nokia provides you with AV converter. I knew they’d come through. So it can be plugged and played through an amp or speakers.
It’s 2-inch, true color (262K colors), TFT display sports a resolution of QVGA (240x320) pixels. If you’re out for a walk during the day the screen is a wee bit reflective so it’s not extremely easy to read a message, but since the numbers show up rather large on the main screen dialing a number from memory is no problem. But accessing your phone book, well that would be a bit tricky to find who you’re calling. The pre-installed themes and wallpapers are colorful enough. With its white and Red/black body the menus do tend to stand out a bit.
There’s also the Nokia 5200 that’s, in the simplest of terms, the un-matured Twin of the 5300, with a resolution of 128x160 pixels and 256k colors. It's also part of the XpressMuisc series. You need to be careful not to get confused between the two because of the looks.
Now unlike the Series 60 models, which have more option with regards to features, the 5300 is perfect if you want to keep things simple. Its user interface like the others in the S40 series is clear and easy to maneuver. It does have its regular features like currency converter, or the usual Calendar features. However, World Clock software is not available. Getting software for these S40 of a problem as software is not easily available. But it’s out there - try Mobile 9, or Zedge.
They don’t call it the Xpress Music edition for nothing, so obviously it has a great music player that supports MP3/AAC/WMA/MIDI formats. The player itself has pre-installed skins to jazz it up and you can also create playlists to manage your music. And of course your music can be used as ringtones.
The output via the loudspeaker is clear and loud, but I’m a bit disappointed to find out that the music quality with the stereo earphones is not all I expected it to be. It’s rather low and the clarity is questionable to certain extent. Nokia users, who loved the 3250 or the 6270 for music, would have a wee bit of concern with this.
There is an FM Radio as well and the channel pick up is good. The voice recorder comes in handy to store random thoughts or weird conversations.
The video player supports 3GPP files and you can’t install another one like Smartmovie, or any other. The good thing is that you can watch videos in full screen mode (landscape). But I’m still wondering why they leave that slight edges on the sides. I presumed Full screen meant just that – “FULL” screen. Every bit of the 2-inch display would be used up. I was also under the assumption that that this was RealPlayer, but apparently it’s not. Nevertheless, the quality was good.
I really do like the camera on the Nokia 5300. Like the 6270 or 3250 and most other new models, it uses landscape mode for capturing images and videos. Although it doesn’t have a flash, the night mode isn’t too bad. The 8x digital zoom is quick and not slow like some of the series 60 models. Plus Nokia’s image editing software makes things a little more fun.
The photo quality is quite alright considering its 1.3 megapixels. It’s not too high end, but not too bad at the same time. The settings allow you to pick the size of the pictures and videos you want, as well as use a few special settings like taking negative, sepia etc., i.e. the usual stuff. And Like I mentioned earlier the Nokia 5200, is also equipped with a camera but just to help distinguish it further from the 5200 it’s a VGA camera with 4x zoom capability. So be careful.
Using the USB 2.0 cable provided, transferring files is simple using PC Suite or phone browser. This is also convenient for backing up your settings, data, pictures or videos.
What I like most about the phone is, that it comes equipped for all kinds of connectivity, from Infrared to EDGE. Surfing the web is easy using xHTML over TCP/IP.
Now even though the phone is equipped with PTT there’s no dedicated key for the same like most other models. But I don’t know anyone who really uses the service, so it’s not a big deal.
The best part it’s also equipped with Bluetooth stereo A2DP support, so you can use a Bluetooth headset. So no worries guys, it’s a phone for connecting to any arena.
It comes with 32MB of flash memory and 16MB RAM. And of course you can always expand that memory using MicroSD cards up to 2GB. Best part is Nokia includes a 256MB MicroSD card with the box. Not bad.
Well the battery is fine. No issues here. The 5300 uses a Nokia BL-5B battery that can give you around 3 hours of talk time and just about 10 to 11 hours with music. That’s adequate, wouldn’t you say? However I would have hoped it would give you more with regards to talk time. I mean, isn’t that it’s primary use?
Priced at around Rs. 10,700, it’s a neat little phone that’s loaded with all the multimedia you need. I wish you could install a few more software like the Series 60 phones, but it’s still a great phone nonetheless. The bottom line is - all of you may not love the phone, but I’m positive, all of you will like it.
Now in case you have a bit of a money crunch problem but do want a phone with a music player, and you don’t mind a lower resolution display with just a VGA camera, you could always opt for the 5200. (Which by the way is available in Blue and Red no black) The price on this is just around Rs. 7,500.
|Network||GSM 900/1800/1900, GPRS, EDGE|
|Physical||92.4 x 48.2 x 20.7 mm, 106 g|
|Display||240x320, 256k colors, TFT, 31x42 mm|
|Memory||5mb, MicroSD (256MB provided)|
|Media||MP3, AAC, FM, 3GP, MP4, Voice Recording|
|Camera||1.3 megapixels, video|
|Connectivity||USB 2.0, Bluetooth, Infrared|
|Battery||223 hours stand by, 3 hours, 11 hrs music|
|Street Price ||Rs. 10,700|