With Lenovo and Motorola releasing smartphones with competing features and specs to the market, the threat of product cannibalisation is very real. Both the Moto G5S Plus and Lenovo K8 Note come with powerful specs, dual cameras at the rear, a premium design and stock Android.
Is it worth spending the extra money for the Moto G5S Plus over the Lenovo K8 Note when in essence both smartphones run the exact same software? How are the two siblings different from each other? Which smartphone has the better dual camera implementation? Let’s find out:
Performance: Efficiency wins over raw power
Both Moto G5S Plus and Lenovo K8 Note are powerhouses in their own ways. One comes with a Snapdragon processor while the other is powered by a less renowned Mediatek chipset. The G5S Plus spec sheet runs as follows – the Snapdragon 625 SoC, 4GB of RAM, a 3,000mAh battery with TurboCharge support, 64GB of internal storage which can be expanded via a microSD card (of up to 128GB) and the Adreno 506GPU.
The Lenovo K8 Note on the other hand comes with the deca core (ten cores no less!) Helio X23 processor, 3/4GB of RAM, the Mali T880 GPU, 32/64GB of internal storage which can be expanded via a microSD card and a sizeable 4,000Mah battery with TurboCharge support. That is a pretty neat spec sheet considering the fact that the K8 Note is almost two to three thousand rupees cheaper than its Motorola sibling.
In terms of raw performance, both smartphones are great at crunching the numbers and don’t get thrown either by intensive use or high-end games
Thus on paper, both smartphones are evenly matched. However, when it comes to real world use, the Moto G5S Plus has an edge over the K8 Note courtesy of the Snapdragon 625 processor which is known for its power efficiency and thermal management.
In terms of raw performance, both smartphones are great at crunching the numbers and don’t get thrown either by intensive use or high-end games. However, where the Moto G5s wins out is when it comes to battery life and thermal efficiency.
While the K8 Note fails to deliver even a day of use out of its substantial 4.000mAh battery (we barely got to 7-8 PM in the evening), the G5S delivers 1 – 1.5 days of use easily (that too with fairly heavy use). Additionally, the K8 Note heats quite a bit up even with moderate use, a problem rarely experienced on the Moto G5S Plus.
Which dual camera system is better?
To put it bluntly, the cameras on the Moto G5S Plus are in a different league as compared to ones found on the Lenovo K8 Note. While many might argue that the above conclusion is inevitable considering the price difference, the difference between the camera performance of the two smartphones is far beyond what the Rs 2,000 price should indicate.
Pictures clicked by the Moto G5S’s 13MP primary rear camera in decent light are sharp, with adequate detail, natural colours and great dynamic range. While the 13MP primary rear camera of the K8 Note is not bad per se, producing images with a decent amount of detail and dynamic range in well-lit scenarios, it gets dwarfed by the unit found on the G5S Plus. In low light as well, images produced by the G5S Plus are better with less noise and more detail.
Both smartphones allow you to take images with depth of field effects courtesy of their rear secondary camera units. Here again the Moto G5S Plus pulls ahead of the Lenovo K8 Note by a fair bit. Let me get one thing clear – both dual camera implementations are not perfect. Bokeh shots taken by both smartphones tend to exhibit jaggedness at the edges of the subject in focus and the blur effect becomes messy at higher levels.
However, bokeh shots taken with the G5S look less artificial, exhibit less jaggedness and less noise and look a fair bit better than ones captured with the K8 Note, especially at higher blur levels. The autofocus is also much better on the Moto G5S Plus.
Software: Pretty much even
A few weeks ago, Lenovo took a lot of people by surprise when it announced that all of its smartphones, starting from the K8 Note, would be shipping with stock Android put of the box. The company’s old Vibe UI was laggy, heavy and full of bloat, so this announcement was met with cries of “finally” and “thank god”.
The cameras on the Moto G5S Plus are in a different league as compared to ones found on the Lenovo K8 Note
Thanks to this decision, both the Motorola G5S Plus and Lenovo K8 Note are extremely similar on the software front. So much so in fact that in our Lenovo K8 Note review, we proclaimed – ” The K8 Note feels like someone has crammed Motorola’s software inside a Lenovo smartphone, which is not that surprising given the fact that the Lenovo and Moto brands are owned by the same company. “
Stock Android on both phones is butter smooth and UI elements load almost instantaneously. However, here as well the G5S Plus has a slight edge. During my time with the Lenovo K8 Note, I encountered several bugs and crashes which I am yet to witness in the G5S Plus. As my full review of the G5S is yet to be out, there is still some time for bugs to show up but if Motorola’s software implementation in their old phones is anything to by, I am not expecting anything untoward.
Design: Metal all around, no plastic to be found
Both Lenovo K8 Note and Moto G5s look and feel quite premium. Design is very subjective and beauty lies in the eye of the beholder so choosing between the two purely on the basis of looks boils down to personal preference.
The two smartphones adopt a very different design ethos. The K8 Note is more industrial and boxy looking while the Moto G5s is more rounded and curvy. The K8 Note is crafted entirely out of series 5000 aluminum and looks quite sleek, especially in the stealthy Venom Black colour.
The Moto G5S Plus is also crafted out of a single piece of aluminum which Motorola claims has been ‘painstakingly polished for a flawless finish’. Both smartphones also feel solid and premium. On the negative side, both phones look a little generic.
All in all, both smartphones are very evenly matched when it comes to build quality and design. Credit must be given to the K8 Note as even though it is cheaper than the Moto G5S Plus, its construction does not give that away.
The Lenovo K8 Note starts at Rs 12,999 for the base variant with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal storage and goes up to Rs 13,999 for the model with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage. On the other hand, the Moto G5s Plus is only available in one variant – with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage for Rs 15,999.
Is spending the extra 2,000 rupees for the Moto G5S Plus worth it? Absolutely. The G5S Plus comes with much better cameras, battery life and thermal management compared to the K8 Note. If you cannot spend the extra cash, the K8 Note is not a bad buy by any means and offers a lot of smartphone for your money. However, competitors like the Nokia 6, Moto G5 Plus and Redmi Note 4 should be considered once.