Samsung Galaxy A54 review: The phone to recommend with only one challenger

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recensione samsung galaxy a54: il telefono da consigliare con un
recensione samsung galaxy a54: il telefono da consigliare con un
Take a top-of-the-range Samsung like the Galaxy S23, lower the maximum brightness of the display a hair, put a less powerful processor and slower memories and here you have a beautiful mid-range whose name is Galaxy A54. I think I have summed up the concept behind this smartphone in two lines which, in terms of completeness, features and aesthetic choices, has very little to envy to much higher-end and, obviously, expensive smartphones.

COSTRUIZIONE, DESIGN E HARDWARE
GALAXY A54 DATA SHEET
AUTONOMY, RECEPTION AND CALLS
DISPLAY
CAMERAS
CONCLUSIONS
VIDEO

CONSTRUCTION, DESIGN AND HARDWARE

If nobody told you the price and features of this A54, you would hardly say that it is a mid-range once you pick it up. Galaxy A54 is in fact built in a very similar way to the new S23 and not only takes up the rear design with the camera optics inserted inside the back cover, but also the materials are excellent as we find glass both behind and in front and metal for the entire side shell.

The sensation of robustness and solidity is immediately in the hand also because the A54 is slightly chubby and quite heavy given the 202 grams of total weight. It is however well balanced and the curvature of the corners allows for an always firm grip and a pleasant grip at all times. Not having curved edges it practically never slips and the 6.4-inch diagonal make it quite manageable and usable even with one hand. It fits well in the pocket and offers a good oleophobic treatment for both the rear body and the front display.

At the hardware level we have a very well balanced smartphone with a couple of interesting but not necessarily positive points. First of all, the processor is an Exynos 1380, a particular solution but which has not shown any problems. I made some comparisons with the S23 Ultra, a smartphone that has a similar 5000mAh battery and I can confirm that in standby and in wi-fi use, however, the 1380 solution consumes more than the Snapdragon 8 gen.2 despite the significantly lower power. However, a relative problem given that the A54 still has excellent autonomy.

It is also interesting to note that Samsung has not “saved” on memory by equipping this smartphone with 8GB of RAM – it also uses RAM Boost for an additional 8GB of virtual memory – and 128/256GB of internal memory. Unfortunately, however, the memory is not very fast since it is not 3.1 but a 2.X version. A relative “problem” but which, considering the price list, makes one turn up one’s nose a bit.

However, the surprise comes from the presence of the MicroSD, an expansion that we hardly find anymore but which meets the needs of those who want to archive a lot of multimedia content. The extremely interesting thing is that the A54 supports e-Sim, one of the very first medium range to allow it and therefore you can still use the Dual SIM + MicroSD without giving up anything.

GALAXY A54 DATA SHEET

Display : 6.4-inch Full HD+ Super AMOLED at 120Hz
chip : Samsung Exynos 1380, octa core at 2.4GHz
memories : 6 or 8 GB of RAM, 128 or 256 GB of UFS 2.X storage expandable via microSD up to 1 TB
cameras :
main rear: 50 MP f/1.8 with optical stabilization
ultra wide rear: 12 MP f/2.2 fixed focus
macro rear: 5 MP f/2.4 FF
front: 32MP f/2.2
connectivity : dual SIM, 5G, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.3, GPS, Glonass, Galileo, Beidou, QZSS, NFC, USB-C
IP67 resistance
operating system : Android 13 with One UI 5.1
Battery : 5,000mAh
dimensions and weight : 158.2 x 76.7 x 8.2 mm, 202 grams
colors : Awesome Lime, Awesome Graphite, Awesome Violet, Awesome White.

8.2
Hardware

Samsung Galaxy A54

BEST PRICE
€404

AUTONOMY, RECEPTION AND CALLS

As mentioned above, Galaxy A54 is a bit chunky and heavy but the reason is linked to the 5000mAh battery which, combined with dimensions and materials, does not allow to contain weight and thickness. However, this translates into excellent autonomy that allows you to effortlessly reach the average 6 hours of screen on in a 16-hour day and to reach two days in the classic weekend.

Above you will find some screenshots of a very stressful day with over 1 hour of Zoom and many other activities. As you can see A54 reacted very well taking me until the evening with just under 10% of battery remaining. Unfortunately there is no fast charging as it stops at a maximum of 25Watt and the charger is not included in the package.

The reception was also good: I tried different SIMs as at the beginning I had some small sporadic signal drops, which disappeared after an update arrived. In 5G the performances are always solid and interesting and also in Wi-Fi the typical values ​​of the top of the range are reached and therefore no renunciation to be made (remember also e-Sim support).

The capsule audio is also very good, which is not only very high in volume (at most you will struggle to keep it), but it is also well balanced, warm and full-bodied. Similarly, the stereo speakerphone also convinces and uses the lower speaker and the capsule as reinforcement. Also great for multimedia content.

Final note, as with the previous A52s and 53, the proximity sensor is virtual: the Samsung algorithm works well and I haven’t had any particular problems in calling and managing voice messages with switching from speakerphone to ear. Of course it’s not always perfect and there’s no capsule-to-speakerphone switching when you take it off your ear while listening to a vocal. Not a drama but still a minus that doesn’t drive me crazy.

Negative note instead for the vibration : simply too little powerful and you will feel it with difficulty especially if you use a protective cover.

DISPLAY

Almost symmetrical frames, slightly more pronounced chin, flat edges, excellent ergonomics, 1000nits of maximum brightness, 120Hz (not LTpO), support for all major formats, HDR, Super Amoled technology, all the classic Samsung settings and a hole for the Selfie camera from 32MP really small and that looks good in front of an S23.

In short, there are no notes to make to this screen which, in terms of quality, readability, brilliance and pleasantness, is closer to a high-end product than a smartphone that is positioned under €500 in the price list. Then there are all the possible accessory optimizations by Samsung which allow, at the software level, to make the general experience even more pleasant by installing the Good Lock suite.

In general, however, the excellent legibility is always appreciated in all light conditions, both in road navigation with lights reflecting from all sides, and under the sun or even in very strong but not direct light conditions. In addition, Samsung uses the boost mode to emphasize colors even more and increase the sharpness of the screen. Function that is activated in direct sunlight unless the phone is hot: in this respect I noticed that the A54 gets a little warmer than the S23 range.

SOFTWARE AND USER EXPERIENCE

Galaxy A54 is classic Samsung and accordingly has a whole set of software features that are common to all products of the company. Compared to the S23 series there are small differences which see on the one hand the absence of DeX as there is no USB with video output and on the other the inclusion of Snapchat filters within the photographic part. A way to make this A54 “younger” and to meet the potential audience of boys and girls who could choose this smartphone.

Obviously we are talking about OneUI 5.1 based on Android 13 and 3 years of Major Updates with 4 years of guaranteed security patches. Therefore, maximum longevity also for this smartphone which becomes a serene purchase even with a view to prolonged use and, with the MicroSD, even 128GB of internal memory could be a correct choice.

In use, you always have a pleasant, fluid and fast smartphone. In the first week you will have to deal with some small lag and heating but it is normal for Samsung: there are many optimizations and calibrations that OneUI does in the background and which lead to some fatigue on the processor side which, not being top of the range, can suffer a little on occasion.

Obviously there is complete support for all Samsung customizations with the Good Guardians and Good Lock suite and as always a perfect and really well done Always on Display. The fingerprint reader under the display is also excellent which, although not ultrasonic, is well positioned, very fast and always accurate. It takes a little more pressure than the S23 series but objectively it is an excellent release system.

CAMERAS

The expectations towards this A54 were high and I must say that, remaining tied to the main sensor, they did not disappoint me. For convenience, I remind you of the specifications of the device:

main rear: 50 MP f/1.8 with optical stabilization
ultra wide rear: 12 MP f/2.2 fixed focus
macro rear: 5 MP f/2.4 FF
front: 32MP f/2.2

As mentioned, the 50MP main camera takes excellent photos in all conditions, both day and night. The presence of the OIS helps in many situations and allows you to take shots without trail effect. At night the software intervenes which, by lengthening the shutter and exposure times a lot, still allows you to take home pleasant photos and without too much softness or watercolor effect.

The coherence between the two normal and wide-angle sensors is also good and the software interpolation for the 2X zoom is also good. In fact, there is no dedicated zoom lens but everything happens with a pleasant crop software.

At night, however, the differences between the main and the wide angle are enormous and in fact only the 50MP sensor can be used. Below you can see the same photos from both lenses and understand for yourself what I mean by huge difference.

On the other hand, the customization of the software is nice, which allows you to take advantage of some Snapchat filters directly during shooting with the fun option. Nothing that makes you cry out for the miracle and the new feature that all smartphones should have, but the results are certainly nice. Here they are:

The videos are optically stabilized but the electronic stabilization system is not as effective as for the S23 series (and of course I would add). So good quality, 4K resolution at 30fps, convincing captured audio but avoid running or walking fast while making videos because you might notice movements that are a little too large and not sufficiently compensated.

CONCLUSIONS

Samsung Galaxy A54 is a product that, as for previous generations, is recommended to everyone and has everything an excellent modern mid-range must have. Excellent cameras with OIS, IP67 certification, excellent display, excellent battery life, excellent construction, very pleasant aesthetics and updates guaranteed for years in addition to Android 13 since its release.

But is the Galaxy A54 the perfect smartphone? My answer is no, but at a price of around €350 in about a couple of months it will become advisable for everyone. The price list of €499 is in fact too high and does not make him choose today if he were to buy a Medium Range.

Today, its main challenger is the Pixel 6a which manages to have the same photographic qualities, software guarantees and ease of use but at a lower price and, on offer at €329, it is difficult not to choose instead of the A54. However, I’ll leave you with one last suggestion: the Galaxy M54 is practically identical to the A54 but has 6000mAh and a 108MP camera: could it be a best buy as long as the dimensions don’t scare you?

VOTE 8.4

DISPLAY
GUARANTEED UPDATES
CONSTRUCTION AND DESIGN
MICROSD PRESENCE

POOR VIBRATION
NOT FAST RECHARGE
UFS 2.X MEMORIES

8.2
Hardware

Samsung Galaxy A54

€404

Samsung Galaxy A54 5G Black 128GB Memory 8GB Ram Display 6.4″ FHD+ Black SM A546

eBay

€ 404

SAMSUNG A546B Galaxy A54 5G 128GB (Awesome White) Unlocked No Branding

Amazon Marketplace

€ 439

Samsung Galaxy A54 5G Display FHD+ Super AMOLED 6.4, Android 13, 8GB

Unieuro

€ 496Samsung Galaxy A54 is available online from eBay for 404 euros . To see the other 106 offers click here. (updated March 31, 2023, 2.20 pm)

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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise