Elephone P5000 “Battery Monster” Review


Battery life is the topic of concern for most smartphone users and even more so these days with manufacturers building thinner and thinner devices, cutting down the available space for a proper battery more and more. The paradox of all this is that only a minority of smartphone users even wants that development. Most are totally fine with thicker devices in exchange for a large battery. Luckily more and more manufacturers start to realize exactly that, resulting in the launch of more and more devices often described at “battery monsters”. Gionee, THL, Lenovo, and just since recently Elephone offer such devices as well. The latter one is the manufacturer we’ve had a device from in the test, and it’s called the Elephone P5000.

Elephone P5000 Review: Specs

The Elephone P5000 is one of the rising manufacturers newest creations, boasting one of the largest batteries that have ever been built into a smartphone. It’s a massive 5,350mAh cell, promising days of battery life. Wanting to provide a benefit over competitors the P5000 even does support fast-charging, eliminating “the wait” you might are used to from previous battery monsters. Unfortunately the other specs might give some of you mixed feelings with an outdated Mediatek MT6592 1.7GHz octa-core SoC, 16GB of memory, no LTE support and a polycarbonate body. Luckily other components seem quite balanced being 2GB of RAM, dual-SIM slots, one micro SD slot, NFC support, a 5-inch 1080p display, a fingerprint sensor, and 16 / 8MP cameras.

Elephone P5000 Review: Unboxing, Design, Build

P1010974

The Elephone P5000 got delivered in two boxes this time. One larger pack contains the main box and another one housing the 2.5A wall charger for the handset. Unfortunately, the wall charger is the biggest fail we’ve ever experienced with a Chinese phone. It comes with an EU plug but Elephone failed in terms of size. It simply doesn’t fit into a wall socket, making the use of a different USB charger necessary. Other accessories you get with the Elephone P5000 are a micro USB cable, a screen protector, one mini Android OTG adaptor and the usual documentation.

The design of the Elephone P5000 is quite pleasant in our opinion. It’s simple yet elegant and even though it doesn’t feature a single piece of metal feels really nice and solid thanks to a very high build quality. The front does remind us a little towards the Samsung Galaxy S5, which the physical home button housing the fingerprint sensor. What we liked is the fact that this phone does offer a status LED, which still too many phones don’t these days. The front and rear of the phone are black, while the frame is chrome plated. It might seem like the Elephone P5000 does feature stereo speakers when looking at the lower frame, but that’s sadly not the case. It’s a single speaker and the second opening only houses the microphone. The right frame houses the volume and on/ off switches, the upper frame the 3.5mm headphone hack and one micro USB OTG port. The rear is covered by a black, matte cover with a rubberized finish, which does feel very nice and adds a decent amount of grip. The frame of the handset and the edges of the cover are rounded to make the phone appear slimmer than it is at 11mm.

The back cover can be removed to gain access to the normal sized SIM slots of which the P5000 does feature two, as well as the micro SD slot. One also can spot the battery which takes the majority of space for itself. Unfortunately the cell can’t be removed. It is protected by a solid metal body and screwed tightly into the phone which essentially means that you will need to disassemble the whole device to replace it.

Elephone P5000 Review: Display

Elephone is keeping the manufacturer of the P5000’s 5-inch 1080p IPS OGS panel with Gorilla Glass protection a secret but we believe it is made by LG. Quality is typical for LG panels and so are the viewing angles with the slightly reddish tint when looking at it from the bottom or top. All in all this screen is what we call perfect. Colors, contrast, brightness, pixel density, touch panel – it all is top-notch and it can’t be done any better except by using some OLED panel. It’s a real pleasure to the eyes, perfect for pictures and other multimedia content.

Elephone P5000 Review: Software & Performance

The Elephone P5000 is running the usual 4.4.2 ROM which is the basis for all MT6592 devices with some Elephone modifications on top. Some actually claim the Elephone ROM to look like MIUI, which is something we don’t agree with. The only similarity between the Elephone ROM and MIUI are rounded icons but everything else is looking stock Android. The ROM has been beefed up a little with useful features such as off-screen gestures that are working very reliable and have been made fail-proof so you don’t initiate any unwanted actions in your pocket. The performance has been very satisfying throughout the whole review period and we didn’t encounter any crashes. Of course you notice that this handset is making use of a previous generation MTK chipset, but the MT6592 is still more than enough for anyone not into playing the latest games, especially when paired with a 2GB of RAM.

Elephone P5000 Review: Wireless Performance

Reception quality appeared to be good with the Elephone P5000 which we believe is mainly due to the large antennas Elephone built inside this device. Reception of 2G and 3G signals has been above average though not at high-end level during our tests. Phone call quality was very satisfying. Wi-Fi performance has been top-notch with no connection losses throughout the whole building. NFC did also work very well and without any need of perfect alignment thanks to a comparably large antenna in the back cover. GPS performance has been acceptable as well considering this handset is making use of an old Mediatek SoC. Accuracy has been at 2 meters during our tests with cold-fix times of 10 – 12 seconds.

Screenshot_2015-02-16-10-38-22

Elephone P5000 Review: Audio Quality

The Elephone P5000’s Hi-Fi performance has been a let-down for us. The design is promising stereo speakers which obviously is not the case. There is one small single speaker built into the phone that does sound very crappy due to distortions going on at higher volume levels. There also is no base playback at all, which makes audio experience even worse. Attaching headphones does improve the overall situation but also doesn’t provide the best quality. It is ok, but not overly balanced and clear.

Read Also:  Xiaomi to debut the new Dimensity 9000+ flagship processor

Elephone P5000 Review: Camera

Camera is another part the Elephone P5000 managed to surprise us with. Usually, Elephones don’t provide cameras with a decent picture quality, but this time they somehow managed to do. The 16 mega pixel rear shooter takes totally usable pictures with good colors and depth of field. It’s of course not coming close to e.g. the Meizu MX4, yet makes a great everyday camera that you always carry with you. Getting into low-light conditions results in the camera generating some noise, but this can be compensated using the LED flash which actually is bright enough to light up mid-sized rooms. 1080p videos are also recorded in a decent quality and offer good audio quality as well. The only serious flaw we stumbled upon is the focus, which sometimes needs up to 5 seconds to adjust. The front camera makes up for a decent selfie shooter, assuming they are taken under daylight.

Elephone P5000 Review: Battery

And there we hit the most important part of our Elephone P5000 review, that being battery of course. The massive 5,350mAh Li-Ion monster inside of there is promising a very long battery life, and it doesn’t stop there as it certainly delivers. Power-using this phone with 5 e-mail accounts and 3 social media accounts synchronizing constantly resulted in an easy 2 days of battery life for us. And that’s without cutting back on 3D gaming, running Dead Trigger 2 for at least one hour every evening! We are pretty sure that the average user will reach at least a full 3 days of battery life, while some might even hit the 4 or 5 days. There’s reason to complain though, and that’s because we believed Elephone didn’t make use of the full potential this huge battery does offer. Why? Simply because the Elephone P5000 only reached 9 hours and 25 minutes of screen-on time in the PCMark battery benchmark. Remember back to the Colorfly G708 slate, which reached close to 8 hours with a similar SoC and larger screen at only 3,000mAh of battery capacity. Now for hardware optimizations it definitely is too late, but there still can be improved a lot on the software side, which we hope is exactly what Elephone will do with future OTA updates, unlocking a larger junk of monster.

And what’s with the promised fast charging? Well, Elephone actually claims that the battery can be charger to 70% within 30 minutes on their website. What sound like nonsense really is. No battery would survive the amount of amperes that would need to be pumped into the cell to charge it that fast. Still, fast charging is there and it is working well. Charging from 20% to 100% only takes 1 hours and 45 minutes, which is quite amazing considering the size of the battery. So in the end charging time is amazing, while Elephone’s lie definitely is not.

Remains one thing to talk about, and that’s the non-replaceable battery. We’ve heard quite a few folks complaining about that, but actually there is no need to. You have to consider the fact that today’s battery cells are specified with around 800 cycles. But using up all of them doesn’t mean that your battery will be dead afterwards. It only means that a certain degree of the originally specified capacity is gone, which on average are a 20 – 30%. Now this means after 800 cycles you will be left with 70 – 80% of the original capacity, which in case of the Elephone P5000 still would be at least 3,745mAh, a lot more than most other phones provide. Now think about the fact how long one charging cycle does last. Lets assume the average user will re-charge the battery after 3 days. This means that you will use up roughly 122 cycles per year, which basically can be considered as nothing. Of course this calculation is very basic and doesn’t represent the reality, but it is enough to tell that this battery will outlast the phone itself, so stop worrying and start using!

Elephone P5000 Review: Verdict

The Elephone P5000 is a very solid phone that for sure isn’t high-end but doesn’t have much flaws as well. It’s one of those few Chinese phones you simply use without having to worry about something. Screen, reception quality, camera, battery life – this is what the Elephone P5000 does very good in. Yet we have to say, that it is a little expensive. On average you pay $220 for the Elephone P5000, which really sounds like a lot for a phone not even using the next generation Mediatek processors. And indeed, it might be too much to spend for anyone who doesn’t really need such a huge battery. But those who do might well be willing to pay this amount of money, and they do get a very solid device that has been worth the money. In the end it once again depends on what you need, and those who need get our green light on the Elephone P5000.

Thanks to Elephone and eFox-Shop for teaming up to provide us with a review sample.

Previous THL 2015 hands on and first impressions
Next 16GB OnePlus One debuts on Amazon India tomorrow

72 Comments

  1. Paul Sleight
    February 22, 2015

    On the Elephone forum when the p5000 was first announced, Elephone indicated that an LTE version would be released in March. Since then there has been nothing, except that the p3000s has been said to be getting an mt6732 SOC soon.
    Hopefully Elephone’s manufacturing partners will give the p5000 an MTK6752 chip and make this a near perfect phone soon!

    • February 22, 2015

      furthermore i think the Elephone build quality is poor.

      • February 22, 2015

        It’s not. Elephone and Ecoo both are manufactured by Ulefone.

        • gerstavros
          February 22, 2015

          Elephone are manufactured by M faction royal (Mpai)

          • Paul Sleight
            February 22, 2015

            I know nothing of who makes which, but looking back over the last few months, I’ve come to the conclusion that Elephone do not actually manufacture their own phones. The design variation and production quality is so inconsistent that the only reason for it is that the manufacturing is sub let. This goes for Ecoo too. Although part of the same group, they clearly progress along their own path,doing better than Elephone.
            If Ulefone are part of the same group I have to say my heart sinks, I was hoping for a lot more from them this year.

            • February 22, 2015

              Ulefone is not part of them. Ulefone are an OEM manufacturer for a lot of brands.

            • Paul Sleight
              February 22, 2015

              Danke Chris. It’s good to get a bit of inside knowledge.
              So am I right in thinking Elephone phones are made by other manufacturers? Or do they have some of their own factories?

            • February 22, 2015

              I don’t know how many and which companies make their phones, but I know for sure that some of them are made by Ulefone.

            • balcobomber25
              March 1, 2015

              Some of them are also made by KVD, who owns the Doogee brand.

            • balcobomber25
              April 28, 2015

              A lot of these brands use multiple OEM’s to build their products. Elephone has used Ulefone and KVD (owners of Doogee) in the past and may have used others as well.

        • Steve B
          February 23, 2015

          Is it right that there are two Ulefones? As there are two website with two different ranges, though the one under the Yatay name is quite out of date. Or is the Ulefone grabbing all the recent headlines a relaunch.

    • Steve B
      February 22, 2015

      Ecoo Aurora could be worth a punt. Pretty sure they share production line and components. Great performance at a cheaper price and 3000 mAh battery not too bad.

      • Paul Sleight
        February 22, 2015

        If I were buying a phone this week, it would be the Aurora. But MWC is only a few days away, I’m going to be seeing what gets released there.

        • Steve B
          February 22, 2015

          Gearbest have the Ecoo Aurora in a Happy Hour sale tomorrow 23rd for $172.
          I’ve got mine already and really like it, runs incredibly smoothly and feels/looks pretty good. Biggest concern for me was the camera, but it’s OK, pretty sharp and detailed, just a slightly over processed look if you pixel peep (similar to Sony HX cameras). I also got a Gionee Elife 7 at the same time and the camera on that is just amazing, but the OS slightly dated and buggy so the Ecoo will be my daily driver and I’ll save the Gionee for best.

          • Paul Sleight
            February 22, 2015

            Two new phones at once? I’m envious!

            • Steve B
              February 23, 2015

              Bit by accident really, went for the Ecoo on a good preorder price in the vain hope the camera, from the limited spec given, was the same as that in the Iuni U2/Gionee E7. Early reviews showed this was not the case and then the Gionee became available at the current discount price, so I just had to go for it, but too late to cancel the Ecoo. For me the camera is the priority, everything else is pretty much of a muchness, but having now got both phones, I’m happy to have both.

          • RoS
            February 24, 2015

            As far as I know, in next days there will be update for gionee to kitkat.
            And I saw there is some project for lollipop on xda

            I also ordered elife e7, tooday it was send, and I’m waiting for it 🙂

            • Steve B
              February 24, 2015

              That’s good news, but will be interesting to see how that works as the system updater is one of the main bugs on my elife e7, it crashes as soon as I check for updates.

        • Anthony_Schumacher
          April 13, 2015

          maybe a 5euro coupon code [efoxlovep5000] would help because I did so haha!

      • February 22, 2015

        I might get a review unit of the 3GB RAM Aurora. Will know for sure when China is back alive.

        • Paul Sleight
          February 22, 2015

          Looking forward to that!

        • Steve B
          February 24, 2015

          Can you check the focus on the rear camera if you do, the more I use mine the more it appears to be off. if you lay a ruler down and away from you and try to focus on specific measurement marks to test. If I focus on 20cm mark, then 10cm is sharp!

  2. chimerical26
    February 22, 2015

    Honestly I would rather buy the P6000. It doesn’t make sense to me to be releasing a phone that doesn’t have LTE at this point. This phone doesn’t really seem to have have much on the THL 5000 which is out a long time now. Good luck to them with it and it’s nice for them that the alternative I mentioned is also one of their phones.

    • oops
      February 24, 2015

      A majority of the world doesn’t have access to LTE so don’t complain when they aim for the larger population -.-

  3. Paul Sleight
    February 22, 2015

    On the Elephone forum when the p5000 was first announced, Elephone indicated that an LTE version would be released in March. Since then there has been nothing, except that the p3000s has been said to be getting an mt6732 SOC soon.
    Hopefully Elephone’s manufacturing partners will give the p5000 an MTK6752 chip and make this a near perfect phone soon!

    • pdayahoo
      February 22, 2015

      furthermore i think the Elephone build quality is poor.

    • Steve B
      February 22, 2015

      Ecoo Aurora could be worth a punt. Pretty sure they share production line and components. Great performance at a cheaper price and 3000 mAh battery not too bad.

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 22, 2015

      It’s not. Elephone and Ecoo both are manufactured by Ulefone.

    • Paul Sleight
      February 22, 2015

      If I were buying a phone this week, it would be the Aurora. But MWC is only a few days away, I’m going to be seeing what gets released there.

    • Guest
      February 22, 2015

      Elephone are manufactured by M faction royal (Mpai)

    • Paul Sleight
      February 22, 2015

      I know nothing of who makes which, but looking back over the last few months, I’ve come to the conclusion that Elephone do not actually manufacture their own phones. The design variation and production quality is so inconsistent that the only reason for it is that the manufacturing is sub let. This goes for Ecoo too. Although part of the same group, they clearly progress along their own path,doing better than Elephone.
      If Ulefone are part of the same group I have to say my heart sinks, I was hoping for a lot more from them this year.

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 22, 2015

      Ulefone is not part of them. Ulefone are an OEM manufacturer for a lot of brands.

    • Paul Sleight
      February 22, 2015

      Danke Chris. It’s good to get a bit of inside knowledge.
      So am I right in thinking Elephone phones are made by other manufacturers? Or do they have some of their own factories?

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 22, 2015

      I don’t know how many and which companies make their phones, but I know for sure that some of them are made by Ulefone.

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 22, 2015

      I might get a review unit of the 3GB RAM Aurora. Will know for sure when China is back alive.

    • Paul Sleight
      February 22, 2015

      Looking forward to that!

    • Steve B
      February 23, 2015

      Gearbest have the Ecoo Aurora in a Happy Hour sale tomorrow 23rd for $172.
      I’ve got mine already and really like it, runs incredibly smoothly and feels/looks pretty good. Biggest concern for me was the camera, but it’s OK, pretty sharp and detailed, just a slightly over processed look if you pixel peep (similar to Sony HX cameras). I also got a Gionee Elife 7 at the same time and the camera on that is just amazing, but the OS slightly dated and buggy so the Ecoo will be my daily driver and I’ll save the Gionee for best.

    • Paul Sleight
      February 23, 2015

      Two new phones at once? I’m envious!

    • Steve B
      February 23, 2015

      Bit by accident really, went for the Ecoo on a good preorder price in the vain hope the camera, from the limited spec given, was the same as that in the Iuni U2/Gionee E7. Early reviews showed this was not the case and then the Gionee became available at the current discount price, so I just had to go for it, but too late to cancel the Ecoo. For me the camera is the priority, everything else is pretty much of a muchness, but having now got both phones, I’m happy to have both.

    • Steve B
      February 23, 2015

      Is it right that there are two Ulefones? As there are two website with two different ranges, though the one under the Yatay name is quite out of date. Or is the Ulefone grabbing all the recent headlines a relaunch.

    • Guest
      February 24, 2015

      As far as I know, in next days there will be update for gionee to kitkat.
      And I saw there is some project for lollipop on xda

      I also ordered elife e7, tooday it was send, and I’m waiting for it 🙂

    • Steve B
      February 24, 2015

      That’s good news, but will be interesting to see how that works as the system updater is one of the main bugs on my elife e7, it crashes as soon as I check for updates.

    • Steve B
      February 25, 2015

      Can you check the focus on the rear camera if you do, the more I use mine the more it appears to be off. if you lay a ruler down and away from you and try to focus on specific measurement marks to test. If I focus on 20cm mark, then 10cm is sharp!

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 25, 2015

      I wasn’t able to reproduce your issue.

    • balcobomber25
      March 1, 2015

      Some of them are also made by KVD, who owns the Doogee brand.

    • Anthony_Schumacher
      April 13, 2015

      maybe a 5euro coupon code [efoxlovep5000] would help because I did so haha!

    • balcobomber25
      April 28, 2015

      A lot of these brands use multiple OEM’s to build their products. Elephone has used Ulefone and KVD (owners of Doogee) in the past and may have used others as well.

  4. aminiesta
    February 22, 2015

    Am I the only one who really prefer a device with matte polycarbonate body over glossy metal body? I really like Nokia @ Lumia line devices with polycarbonate and matte finish.

    • February 22, 2015

      I agree with you, this wouldn’t look bad at all. Plus will live longer. The silver stuff tends to be rubbed off after a year.

  5. Guest
    February 22, 2015

    Honestly I would rather buy the P6000. It doesn’t make sense to me to be releasing a phone that doesn’t have LTE at this point. This phone doesn’t really seem to have have much on the THL 5000 which is out a long time now. Good luck to them with it and it’s nice for them that the alternative I mentioned is also one of their phones.

    • Guest
      February 25, 2015

      A majority of the world doesn’t have access to LTE so don’t complain when they aim for the larger population -.-

  6. aminiesta
    February 22, 2015

    Am I the only one who really prefer a device with matte polycarbonate body over glossy metal body? I really like Nokia @ Lumia line devices with polycarbonate and matte finish.

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 22, 2015

      I agree with you, this wouldn’t look bad at all. Plus will live longer. The silver stuff tends to be rubbed off after a year.

  7. seven7dust
    February 22, 2015

    some people complain too much
    9.5 hrs screen on time is a record , it’s awesome !

    what about the finger print scanner ? no mention of that in the review ?

    BTW scoring 30,000 on Antutu means it’s good enough for a budget device, remember the newer snapdragon 615 phones scores similarly.

    why the complaints about performance ? am I missing something ? pretty much all games/apps will run on this phone at good framerates

    • February 23, 2015

      Not complaining about anything you mention. Just mentioning that it could be better. That’s one big difference.

      • seven7dust
        February 23, 2015

        wasnt just talking about the review but everyone like the commenters mostly ,
        9.5 hrs screen on time is impressive though you got to admit !!!

        either-way anyword on the fingerprint sensor ?

        • February 24, 2015

          Of course it’s impressive. Fingerprint is working better than on previous Elephones but still has some issues with oily or wet fingers.

  8. seven7dust
    February 22, 2015

    some people complain too much
    9.5 hrs screen on time is a record , it’s awesome !

    what about the finger print scanner ? no mention of that in the review ?

    BTW scoring 30,000 on Antutu means it’s good enough for a budget device, remember the newer snapdragon 615 phones scores similarly.

    why the complaints about performance ? am I missing something ? pretty much all games/apps will run on this phone at good framerates

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 23, 2015

      Not complaining about anything you mention. Just mentioning that it could be better. That’s one big difference.

    • seven7dust
      February 24, 2015

      wasnt just talking about the review but everyone like the commenters mostly ,
      9.5 hrs screen on time is impressive though you got to admit !!!

      either-way anyword on the fingerprint sensor ?

    • Christopher Straßer
      February 24, 2015

      Of course it’s impressive. Fingerprint is working better than on previous Elephones but still has some issues with oily or wet fingers.

  9. February 24, 2015

    I’ve given up on China phones, now using s4 with a 5000mAh+ from taobao inside

  10. joe computer
    February 24, 2015

    I’ve given up on China phones, now using s4 with a 5000mAh+ from taobao inside

  11. Joaquin Padilla Rivero
    March 1, 2015

    Considering Elephone’s track record with batteries and the fact that it charges so quickly, I’m betting that the “5350 mAh” are actually way less.

  12. Joaquin Padilla Rivero
    March 1, 2015

    Considering Elephone’s track record with batteries and the fact that it charges so quickly, I’m betting that the “5350 mAh” are actually way less.

  13. Hany
    April 6, 2015

    i bought this elephone for the battery life ” 4 days ” , but it works only for 12 hours !!! and post complaint in their support forum but no any reply

  14. Hany
    April 6, 2015

    i bought this elephone for the battery life ” 4 days ” , but it works only for 12 hours !!! and post complaint in their support forum but no any reply

  15. Laura
    April 25, 2015

    I read a lot about the elephine p5000 and I´m still not sure whether I should buy it or not. Really need large battery for my lifestyle … had already bad luck with the thl 5000, so i´m hesitating … could someone give me any advice?

  16. Guest
    April 26, 2015

    I read a lot about the elephine p5000 and I´m still not sure whether I should buy it or not. Really need large battery for my lifestyle … had already bad luck with the thl 5000, so i´m hesitating … could someone give me any advice?

  17. Marcelo Pereira
    November 14, 2016

    preciso de uma battery

  18. Marcelo Pereira
    November 15, 2016

    preciso de uma battery