Honor Magic Vs review: Foldable beauty, magic beast

The Breakdown

Packing an impressive hardware set, decent cameras, impressive battery life and intuitive multitasking features, Honor Magic Vs is a true beauty - trapped in the body of a beast!
Build Quality
Foldable features
Battery life

Having made its first unofficial sighting last year, the Honor Magic Vs was announced 3 months ago, sometime around November 2022 in China, with local availability kicking off early December. It’s the hyped successor of the early 2022 Magic V model, but as you will see in our review, it has a lot more to say this time. Better specs, improved hinge performance and some exceptional cameras make up for a foldable beauty, that can easily turn into a beast.

Honor Magic Vs

Τhe Honor Magic Vs packs all the specs you’d expect from a 2023 flagship phone into a foldable package. A large battery (5,000 mAh), fast charging (66 watts), a powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen Plus 1 processor, and three years of OS upgrades as well as five years of security patches.

The HONOR Magic Vs comes in Orange, Cyan and Black colors and is priced at 7499 yuan (US$ 1048 / Rs. 85,705 approx.) for 8GB + 256GB, 7999 yuan (US$ 1117 / Rs. 91,420 approx.) for the 12GB + 256GB and the top-end 12GB + 512GB model costs 8999 yuan (US$ 1257 / Rs. 102,845 approx.).

Honor Magic Vs – Technical specifications

  •  7.9-inch (2272 × 1984 Pixels) FHD+ OLED 10.3:9 aspect ratio display with 90Hz refresh rate, 1920Hz high frequency PWM eye protection, HDR10+, 1.07 billion colors, DCI-P3 Wide Color Gamut, up to 800 nits brightness
  • 6.45-inch (2560 × 1080 Pixels) FHD+ OLED 21:9 aspect ratio display with 120Hz refresh rate, 1920Hz high frequency PWM eye protection, HDR10+, 1.07 billion colors, DCI-P3 Wide Color Gamut, up to 1200 nits brightness
  • Octa Core Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 4nm Mobile Platform with Adreno next-gen GPU
  • 8GB / 12GB RAM with 256GB storage / 512GB storage, 16GB RAM with 512GB storage (Ultimate)
  • Magic UI 7.0 based on Android 12
  • Dual SIM
  • 50MP Camera with IMX800 sensor, f/1.9 aperture, LED flash, 50MP ultra-wide camera with f/2.0 aperture, macro option, 8MP 3X Optical Zoom Camera with f/2.4 aperture
  • 16MP front camera with f/2.45 aperture
  • Side-mounted fingerprint sensor, Infrared sensor
  • USB Type-C Audio, Stereo speakers, certified by IMAX Enhanced, 3-MIC Stereo Voice Reception, DTS: X Ultra Algorithm
  • Dimensions: 160.3x 141.5mm (72.6mm when folded) ×6.1 (12.9 when folded) mm; Weight: 261g
  • 5G SA/NSA, Dual 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 ax (2.4GHz and 5GHz), Bluetooth 5.2 LE, GPS (L1 + L5 Dual band), NFC, USB 3.1 Type-C (GEN1)
  • 5000mAh (typical) battery with 66W Super fast wired charging

Design and display(s)

The successor to the Magic V retains the 7.9-inch FHD+ 90Hz OLED foldable inner screen with 21:9 aspect ratio and a 90% screen-to-body ratio, 6.45-inch FHD+ 120Hz AMOLED external screen. Yes, the foldable display remains this phone’s most significant feature and for a good reason. Just like the Galaxy Z Fold 4, it has a cover screen and an interior screen. The outer screen measures 6.45 inches diagonally, while the inner display is 7.9 inches. I found both crisp, responsive, and bright, and each screen also folds into the other with no discernible gap. However, in this phone, the outer display is much better and more vibrant than the inner. It seems that Honor wants us to use the Magic Vs as a phone primarily, and then as a foldable “tablet.”

The HONOR Magic Vs is 12.9mm thin when folded and weighs 261g, making it the industry’s lightest foldable smartphone currently. It comes with a seamless design, and a sophisticated super-light gearless hinge carefully crafted with a single-piece casting processing technology without gap offering a creaseless display when unfolded. It is built with aerospace-grade materials and can withstand over 400,000 folds, equivalent to more than ten years of use with 100 folds per day.

Lots of smudges

Unfortunately, the glossy, mirror-like finish of the device makes it a fingerprint magnet. The only time you see it in pristine condition is that 1 moment just after it has been cleaned. Then… smudge chaos. That’s why I would suggest the use of the case: it saves you from all of those woes, while also providing protection. It’s got a soft faux leather layer so it’s nicely premium feeling, too.

The controls around the Magic’s perimeter are placed in somewhat of an unusual way. The fingerprint reader/power button pair is on the bottom/right half of the handset. Also the volume rocker is above it. There are also 2 speakers placed on the top/left half of the handset. Another thing you’ll find on the top is an IR emitter! What a surprise! It reminds me of the good old days when most Chinese smartphones came with their own IrDA ports and we could control all sorts of TV’s.

In terms of size and usability, the Honor Magic Vs is taller and wider than the Galaxy Fold4, but thinner, and it looks and feels even thinner than the numbers suggest! When you want to use it in tablet mode however, it offers a larger viewing area of 7.9 inches compared to the ‘tiny’ 7.6-inch unit of the latest Galaxy.

Honor Magic Vs camera(s)

  • Primary Camera (Wide)
    • 27mm 54MP IMX800 Main Camera (f/1.9)
    • Video: Up to 2160×3840 pixels
    • Photo: Up to 6144×8768 pixels
  • Ultrawide & Macro camera
    • 13mm 50-MP f/2
  • Telephoto camera
    • 94mm 8MP f/2.4 3X optical zoom + OIS
  • Selfie
    • 25mm 16MP f/2.45

The Honor Magic Vs comes with 3 main (rear) cameras, consisting of a 54-megapixel main camera, 50-megapixel ultra-wide camera, and an 8-megapixel telephoto camera capable of 3x optical zoom. There’s also a 16-megapixel selfie shooter, with beauty options and really nice performance.

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Honor Magic Vs

I must admit this phone creates magic with its cameras as well. I was pleased with the photo clarity, dynamic range, shutter speed and the versatility of the camera. Detail is good and you can say it’s presented in a balanced way – it’s not the most natural rendition, but it’s not overly processed either. The full res 54MP mode saves in the native field of view, equivalent to a 23mm lens, so it does get a bit more in the frame. That’s perhaps it most significant advantage since it doesn’t really get you a meaningful detail improvement. The 8MP telephoto camera may not sound like much, but it does take solid photos. Detail is very good and there’s no noise.

Whether I was in bright, dim or even dark lighting environments, the camera captured crisp, vibrant and accurate photos in a variety of lighting scenarios. It cannot reach the Dx0Mark champions out there (iPhone or Samsung flagships) but still, it is great all in all.


Honor Magic Vs battery life

Equipped with a 5,000-mAh battery, the Honor Magic Vs boasts as the foldable phone with the largest battery out there. Only non-foldable flagships – such as the Galaxy S22 Ultra pack the same size battery or larger.Honor Magic Vs

During my 2 weeks of everyday use, the Magic Vs made it through with a single charge until late night, just before I went to sleep. I was very happy that I didn’t have to charge it 2 times per day – even when I used the phone for some gaming.

During that time, I played Genshin Impact and took a 10-minute Skype video call on the cover screen. The battery went from 100% to 82% in those 45 minutes.

Honor Magic Vs

The Magic Vs comes with a bundled 66-watt charger, which Honor says will completely replenish a dead battery within 46 minutes. I tried to repeat the above, and to my surprise, the phone went from 0% to 100% in 48 minutes (!). This means the Magic Vs outshines the Galaxy Z Fold 4 in this department. However, there’s no wireless charging on the Magic Vs. That only leaves the Galaxy foldables and a couple of vivo X Folds that support it in the market.

Honor Magic Vs

Honor Magic Vs software

Thankfully the Magic Vs runs Android 13 and Honor’s MagicOS, just like most of this years’ models. It also includes full support for the Google apps suite, unlike Huawei’s software builds which are limited in one way or another. The MagicOS v7 comes with just a few subtle upgrades over its previous iteration. Icons are the same, the task switcher and notification/quick settings have improved usability placements and the Settings menu remains largely the same. I loved the Yoyo suggestions card/widget, that lets you have the onboard assistant pitch apps, and the huge themes gallery with thousands of free customization options.

Having played with this foldable, I happily admit of being a fan of MagicOS’ split-screen multi-tasking system, which includes a slide-over menu that you trigger by swiping and holding from the sides. You can multitask with up to 4 apps and there’s a split screen mode as well as floating windows. You can also move apps around and resize their windows.

I would have loved to see something like Samsung’s Flex mode on the Magic Vs. Even though I could use the phone when it was half-folded and prop it up like a laptop, none of the apps I used, even native ones, that were tailored for that experience. It’s a shame the software doesn’t take enough advantage of the phone’s folding design. Perhaps with a future OS update?

Honor Magic Vs

Performance and benchmarks

The Magic Vs packs a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 at its heart. I know, it’s not the current Gen 2, but it’s an easily powerful enough platform. It’s the flagship chipset for 2022, after all. Honor lists the numbers as 3.00GHz for the Cortex-X2 super-powerful core, 2.50GHz for the mid-tier cluster of 3x Cortex-A710s and 1.80GHz for the efficiency-oriented 4x Cortex-A510s.

Note also that the international version of the Honor foldable comes with 12GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. Chinese markets also get some 12GB/256GB and 8GB/256GB options.

Honor Magic Vs

In the Geekbench 5 tests, the phone manages to get some 1299 points in single-core metrics and 3990 points in the multi-core challenge. The numbers are almost the same with the Galaxy Z Fold 4 in multi-core tests. Not in single-core, however.

Final verdict

Packing an impressive hardware set, decent cameras, impressive battery life and intuitive multitasking features, Honor Magic Vs is a true beaty – trapped in the body of a beast! I loved it all in all, mostly for its professional character and its undying battery. However, I must stress that it lacks any kind of IP rating. This makes it fragile sometimes. Also its software doesn’t really take advantage of the folding screen. Finally Honor provides fewer software updates than Samsung (the current foldable King of the market).

Honor Magic Vs


  • Excellent display
  • Impeccable build quality
  • Super thin design
  • State-of the art cameras
  • Large exterior display


  • No IP rating
  • MagicOS could pack more foldable features
  • Mediocre audio quality
Disclaimer: We may be compensated by some of the companies whose products we talk about, but our articles and reviews are always our honest opinions. For more details, you can check out our editorial guidelines and learn about how we use affiliate links.

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