Price (RRP): $199
As I was reviewing the Mintt A5, I began to wonder at what price you had to sacrifice too much to make a capable smartphone.
You can read about the Mintt 2020 smartphone range here. The Y5 at $379 4.0/5 is a terrific value phone that managed to include Qi wireless charge and NFC. The nearest brand with Qi charge phone is $799! The X5 has a huge 6.5″ screen for $279. Note Mintt has just dropped to these prices – courtesy of a stronger Aussie dollar.
The way Mintt can get such good pricing is that they sell and support via an online model only – no middlemen and retailers profit to add on.
In fact, the Mint A5 and X5 (technically an UltraMintt X5) – share similar internals. The X5 extra price pays for a larger screen, more RAM/Storage, and upgraded camera. The hallmark of both is that they have Wi-Fi 5 AC, BT 5.0 USB-C charging (still an oddity at this price), dual sim and microSD and pure Google Android.
Australian review: Mintt A5
- Australian website here
- Price: $199
- Colour: Classic Black
- From: Mintt online
- Elevator pitch: As low as you can go and still get a decent phone
- Warranty: 12-months ACL
- Country of Manufacture: China
- Mintt is an Australian company, part of the South-east-Asian Mintt/NWTL Group. Details here.
- Other reviews here
As this is a lower cost device, we don’t go to the time expense of executing all tests. We use FAIL, PASS and EXCEED to arrive at a rating.
First impression – PASS
The Mintt A5 is a boring classic piano black, fingerprint magnet, glass slab. Oh, how I wish for the bright greens, oranges, reds, and yellows of Nokia Lumia past.
Having gotten my black ‘phonist’ adversity off my chest, it looks pretty good. It has a tri-camera back (stable on the desk) and a rear fingerprint button just above the Mintt logo. It has a 3.5mm combo audio jack. The winning feature is a dual sim and a dedicated microSD slot – tri-slot card. This is very rare at $199!
It’s a nice flat, bright screen with a pre-fitted screen protector and a TPU bumper case.
Screen – PASS+
|Type||Centre teardrop selfie-and largish chin and bezels|
|Resolution||1560 x 720|
400 max (tested 470 max)
Not relevant but colours are quite accurate
Adjustable Standard, Vivid, Cool Colour or Custom
|Odd-angle – Barely, typical of any IPS screen*|
|DRM||DRM Info finds L3 so not for Netflix streaming|
|Protection||Pre-fitted plastic screen protector over PANDA toughened glass|
|Face ID||2D face id accuracy depends on light levels – Tested 4/10|
This is a terrific bright screen for the price.
Processor – PASS
|SoC||Media Tek Helio P22 (MT6762V/WD)|
4 x 1.8Ghz + 4 x 1.5Ghz
|GPU||PowerVR Rogue GE8320|
|Game use||Limited – the GPU will play most games at minimum frame rates. Fine for browser-based games|
|Storage||32GB (21.6 free) eMMC|
Androbench Mbps sequential read/write 255.54/125.07
|micro-SD||Dedicated slot to 256GB|
|Max: 82,278 GIPS, Average: 78.493 13% loss over 15 minutes|
CPU temp reached 50°
It’s a low power processor. Don’t expect fast performance or no lag! It is competent and fit for purpose.
Interestingly its most often compared to the Qualcomm SD630/636. It is in the Mint X5, LG K40/42/50, Samsung A10, OPPO A1. Realme C2, Nokia 3.1. Moto e6s and about 140 more phones.
Comms – PASS+
|Wi-Fi||Wi-Fi 5 AC 1×1 MIMO|
Signal Strength 5Ghz – distance from ASUS AX1100 router
– 2m: -33dBm/433Mbps (excellent strength)
– 5m: -61dBm/390Mbps
– 10m: -75/5Ghz not usable but 2.4Gz was 65Mbps
|GPS||Single and adequate 10m radius for turn-by-turn navigation|
This is everything you can expect for the price. A tri-slot is amazing.
LTE – PASS
|SIM||Dual sim (one active at a time)|
|Support||VoLTE – carrier dependent – generally yes|
Wi-Fi calling – Yes
ViLTE – Yes on Vodafone
|UL (Mbps)||Test: 4.2 Mbps|
|DL (Mbps)||Test: 26.8 Mbps|
|LTE Band||1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 20, 28A, 28B, 38 – fine for Australia|
|Test||-106 dBm in a 3-bar reception area (average)|
It has all the bands, including band 28. Reception is average for the test – it is more of a city/suburbs phone. This reflects the antenna design and MediaTek modem capabilities.
Battery – PASS
|Battery mAh||4000mAh (3930 test)|
Charge Time under 5 hours
You can use any USB-A charger and any USB-C PD charger, but it does not fast charge topping out at 7.5W
Most at 60hz screen
|Video Loop test: 1080p/50%/aeroplane mode – 19 hrs|
Typical use 4G, Wi-Fi Test – 16 hours
MP3 music test: 50% volume played from storage – 20+
100% load Battery drain – 10 hours
T-Rex – 615m/1480 frame
Drain screen off: about 15 days)
The battery is quite large and will last 2-3 days with power-saving measures (assuming screen time of about 3 hours per day). It has a low drain (screen off but idle) and should go three weeks without a charge.
Sound – PASS
|Speakers||Mono earpiece and down-firing speaker*|
|BT codecs||SBC (standard)|
Anything over 80dB is excellent
|Media – 75-80|
Ring – 80
Alarm – 80
Earpiece – 50
* It is not fair to measure the sound signature on a mono speaker system. The primary use is for clear voice. It is not for music or movies with no bass or mid before 1000Hz and no treble after 10kHz.
It is reasonably loud all around. But a single mic makes this an average handsfree speakerphone.
The 3.5mm buds were poor with no bass, high mid and harsh treble.
BT output to our reference Sony WH-1000XM4 on SBC and AAC codecs is loud and clear – more than CD quality.
We don’t measure this on mono devices.
Build – PASS
|Size/Weight||154.6 × 73.8 × 8.8mm x198g|
|Build||Glass – Panda toughened|
Frame – polycarbonate
Back – plastic paint deposited
|In the box||Bumper cover|
7.5 W charger
USB-A to USB-C cable
3.5mm standard buds
It is well-made and should stand up to the rigours of daily use.
You can buy a PU leather-like flip case for $25 from Mintt.
Pure Android 10 – PASS+
|Android||Google Android 10|
Security patch date 5 June 2020
|UI||Pure Google Android|
|All standard apps, Google Lens and Assistant. Dedicated Google Assistant key.|
|Bloatware||FM radio and some productivity apps|
|Update Policy||Assume that no OS update although security patches should come|
|Security||Fingerprint reader on the back|
FaceID on front
Pure Android at this price is amazing. There are a few light changes that allow for screen colour gamuts and sound profiles.
Camera – PASS+
It’s a social media class camera and a huge step up from the 2019 model.
|Macro 2MP||Depth 2MP||Selfie 8MP|
|Pixel size um||1.12||1.75||1.75||1.22|
|FOV° and cropped||65.8||66.5|
|Video Max||[email protected]||1080p|
|Features||Limited AI provided by Helio P22|
Indoors Office Light (400 lumen)
Low light (room <40 lumen)
Its 8MP with fixed focus a fairly narrow field of view. Add to that the F/2.0 and 1.22um pixels and its a great daylight camera and a very average office/night camera. It has basic AI beauty filters.
Video is not a strong point at a maximum of [email protected] with a mono mic. Quality is OK in daylight but falls off quickly in lower light.
GadgetGuy’s take – Mintt A5 is a $199 wonder
This is a mass-market phone in a contested $199 market. Its USPs are Pure Android, 3/32GB/microSD, Wi-Fi AC, colourful and bright screen and a decent battery.
A PASS mark is 4/5. We add points where it EXCEEDs and vice versa. For a $199 phone to PASS everything deserves credit, and it got a few PASS+ as well.
Competition (rating if reviews are the last figures)
Faced with this selection, I would be happy to recommend it as a leader in the <$199 bracket.