We previously had a first look at the HONOR Magic V2 which currently holds the enviable title of being the world’s slimmest and lightest inward folding foldable phone. After taking it for a whirl around the block for the past week, we’ve managed to suss out its capabilities and if it’s worth the hype in our Honor Magic V2 review where we share if it’s worth your money.
HONOR Magic V2 review – Specifications and Performance
Table of Contents
Our previous feature on the Honor Magic V2 took a close look at its exceptionally svelte design that is just 4.7mm when unfolded and 9.9mm when folded down which makes it no larger than most conventionally designed smartphones.
Belying its nature as a foldable phone, it is lighter than its peers and is still a good deal lighter than most conventionally designed phones at 231g on account of a trifecta of engineering triumphs – an ultra light yet tough titanium hinge that’s 42% lighter than the usual stainless steel ones used in competing foldables, a magnesium alloy chassis that offers exceptional weight savings and silicon carbon batteries no thicker than a credit card at 2.7mm thin.
In terms of hardware, our Honor Magic V2 review sample is armed for bear with flagship-grade hardware. You get a current gen Snapdragon 8 Gen 2, the top of the line chipset released last year running the show paired with 16GB RAM augmented by an additional 8GB of Honor’s own RAM Turbo virtual RAM assigned off their onboard storage and a generous 512GB of non-expandable onboard storage. Here’s how our Honor Magic V2 review unit, which is indicative of the units available in Malaysia stack up on paper:
|6.43-inch LTPO OLED, 2,376 x 1,060 pixels, 120Hz refresh rate, 91.2% screen-to-body ratio, 2,500 nits peak brightness, 402 ppi, 100% DCI-P3, HDR10+ [front display] | 7.92-inch foldable LTPO OLED, 2,344 x 2,156 pixels, 120Hz, 1,600 nits peak brightness, 402ppi, 3,840Hz PWM dimming, 100% DCI-P3, HDR10+ [folding display]
|Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
|16GB LPDDR5 RAM +7GB HONOR RAM Turbo virtual RAM / 512GB UFS 3.1 storage
|Android 13 w/ MagicOS 7.2
|HONOR Falcon Camera System 50MP F/1.9 w/ OIS, 50MP F/2.0 ultra wide angle camera and 20MP F/2.4 telephoto w/OIS [rear] | 16MP F/2.2 [cover screen] | 16MP F/2.2 [main display]
|5,000mAh silicon-carbon battery w/ 66W wired HONOR Supercharge
|156.7 x 74.1 x 9.9mm [folded], 156.7 x 145.4mm x 4.7mm [unfolded] /231g
While this year’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 flagships are only beginning to trickle into the market, the Honor Magic V2 is more than powerful enough to tackle anything asked of a flagship Android phone up to and including hefty gaming and extensive video editing on CapCut. When subjected to synthetic benchmarks, our Honor Magic V2 review unit scored the following:
|3D Mark Wild Life
|3D Mark WIld Life Unlimited
|3D Mark Wild Life Extreme
|3D Mark Wild Life Extreme Unlimited
|3D Mark Solar Bay
|3D Mark Solar Bay Unlimited
|Geekbench 6 Single core
|Geekbench 6 Multi core
|Geekbench 6 OpenCL
|Geekbench 6 Vulkan
|PC Mark Work (Extended)
|PC Mark Battery life
|16 hours 21 mins
In terms of overall performance, it holds up favourably to its more conventionally designed sibling the Honor Magic5 Pro which uses an identical processor. With the addition of RAM Turbo virtual RAM, you’re also getting the equivalent of 21GB RAM for swapping apps and other tasks which is massive overkill that exceeds its nearest foldable competitors.
This enables it to tackle almost any conceivable task asked of a foldable. Much like its siblings though, there’s no way to customise the amount of RAM Turbo available so you’re stuck with the default 7GB.
In field conditions, our Honor Magic V2 test unit was fast and responsive, swapping between apps in seconds and loading them in a gratifyingly swift fashion. Performance did not disappoint and it was even able to run Call of Duty Warzone and Genshin Impact on default settings without issue.
Editing 4K video on CapCut was not an issue as well and it easily swapped between a dozen open tabs in Chrome in seconds. From a performance standpoint, the Honor Magic V2 performs like a champ.
Of note is the inclusion of what Honor refers as an Ultrathin Bionic VC Cooling system that integrates a slim vapour chamber, a graphite thermal layer, thermal conductivity gel, copper foil and a high thermal conductivity AL middle frame to effectively vent heat from critical components.
Honor’s emphasis on improved ergonomics pays dividends here with the front display having dimensions akin to a normal smartphone display while retaining similar heft and dimensions too. The front 6.43-inch LTPO OLED display not only has a 120Hz refresh rate but also has 100% DCI-P3 colour gamut and a peak brightness of 2,500 nits.
The display also has the enviable benefit of having Honor’s impressive 3,840 PWM dimming tech to minimise the subtle flickering seen especially in low light in lesser displays and makes it much easier on the eyes too.
Another perk that Honor has integrated with the display is their Circadian Night Display tech which works in tandem with the PWM dimming tech to ensure that the light emitted doesn’t disrupt our normal sleep cycles which makes doomscrolling TikTok and YouTube in bed less likely to interfere with your sleep patterns.
In testing, the front display and its wide 20:9 aspect ratio felt very much like a normal phone like the Magic5 Pro and was wide enough that texting was a comfortable affair and bright enough that usage in daylight wasn’t a chore. Colours were vibrant and both gaming and movies played on it were a comfortable affair helped in part by its built-in stereo speakers flanking the display on the top and bottom of the phone.
For the most part, you can get most day to day tasks just on the cover display alone seeing its conventional smartphone-sized dimensions which is quite an achievement
The main 7.92-inch foldable OLED display has similar specifications including 100% DCI-P3 and a 120Hz refresh rate and 3,840Hz PWM dimming tech as the front display with 2,344 x 2,156 pixels resolution and a squarish 9.78:9 aspect ratio though it is not as bright at 1,600 nits peak brightness. When fully unfurled, it folds relatively flat and while there’s still a tiny bit of a crease at the edges, it is only apparent when the screen is off.
Of note is that it includes a special anti-reflective coating that minimises reflections which makes it delightful for watching movies and gaming. I found using the main screen more practical for movie watching and paperwork especially spreadsheets on account of the additional screen real estate though gaming is a mixed bag as the squarish dimensions mean that some games look distorted onscreen.
The lower 1,600 nits peak brightness means that it isn’t as bright outdoors in broad daylight but is more than sufficient for indoors use. Where it will find appeal with many users is that it has a modicum of multitasking capability with the ability to open up to three different apps on screen simultaneously on the main screen which means you can watch a movie, browse a website and possibly game at the same time.
Under the hood, our Honor Magic V2 review unit runs Android 13 with their MagicOS 7.2 firmware with a scheduled 3 years of Android updates and 5 years of security updates which is respectable for a flagship phone. The user experience for MagicOS 7.2 is an intuitively smooth affair with minimal issues or slowdown. Bloatware is kept to a gratifying minimum here bar the addition of their own app store though this is itself optional and almost all the apps you require sourceable via the Google Play store.
According to Honor, the titanium alloy hinge itself has been SGS certified to withstand over 400,000 folds – this means that it will continue functioning flawlessly even when folded and unfolded 100 times a day nonstop for a decade which is impressive.
What makes the design particularly impressive is that the hinge mechanism is now sturdy enough to enable something similar to Flex mode seen in Samsung’s Galaxy Z series foldables in that it can be folded halfway up to take advantage of the split screen. The biggest quibble here is that MagicOS doesn’t have many optimisations that take advantage of this half-folded mode though it does enable you to use it as a tripod in portrait mode for taking photos and video as well as for watching content.
In terms of endurance, our Honor Magic V2 review unit and its novel silicon carbide battery was able to last a whopping 16 plus hours in the PCMark battery life test and easily lasted a full day and half of heavy use including an episode of Andor along with a few bouts of Call of Duty Mobile in addition to the usual social media and phone calls. Charging it was equally swift with its 66W wired charging and bundled charger.
Honor Magic V2 Review – Cameras
Belying its slim dimensions, the Honor Magic V2 has a respectable triple camera system on the rear built around a primary 50MP F/1.9 camera with optical image stabilisation, a 50MP F/2.0 ultrawide angle camera and a 20MP F/2.4 telephoto camera with 2.5x optical zoom and a 30x hybrid zoom along with OIS much like the main camera. Combined this setup allows for up to 4K@60fps video and shots at up to 40x hybrid zoom and videos at up to 10x hybrid zoom.
The folding display and the front display each have a 16MP selfie camera capable of up to 4K@30fps video for video calls and selfies.
The rear camera on our Honor Magic V2 review unit proved to be surprisingly good with pleasing detail and colour rendition as well as good dynamic range in daylight out to 2.5x zoom. While the 40x digital zoom is interesting to have, results are still a bit on the soft side.
Shots in dim light are good as well and have solid colour retention and are able to salvage a fair amount of detail even from dimly lit scenarios. Videos in 4K offer best results at 1x without zooming in and are more than sufficient for social media use.
Both the front and main folding screen selfie cameras offer equal quality and offer solid footage for video calls and selfies with best results in daylight conditions.
Should you buy the Honor Magic V2?
The Honor Magic V2 is an impressive example of engineering that addresses many of the most common ergonomic pain points of an inward-folding flagship foldable.
The large and luscious front display is wide enough that it is effective for day to day usage especially texting while the main folding inner display mitigates irksome reflections thanks to its matte coating which makes watching movies a treat.
Add in its excellent performance shoehorned into the world’s lightest and slimmest chassis and this makes for an exceptionally desirable foldable indeed. However, the design lacks dust or water resistance and the while it can fold halfway up, there’s not much software or features that can take advantage of it for now save for use as an ersatz tripod for photos and videos. If you prize lightness and thinness in a foldable, the Honor Magic V2 is ahead of the competition.
HONOR Magic V2 review sample courtesy of HONOR Malaysia. For more details and to purchase please visit https://www.hihonor.com/my/
Honor Magic V2
Honor Magic V2
As the world’s slimmest and lightest foldable, the Honor Magic V2 hosts an excellent front and inner display as well as flagship-grade performance. The phone also has excellent endurance along with a solid array of cameras. Add in the free casing and charger bundled with it and it makes for a very compelling choice for those looking for a premium foldable.
World’s slimmest and lightest inward folding foldable
Exquisite build quality and design, wide and practical cover display
Excellent display quality
Decent battery life
No wireless charging
No dust or water resistance