Monday, 19 August 2019

Samsung Galaxy A30 Review: Should You Go For It?

If anyone asks me advice for buying printers, I only recommend Ink Tank printers. I have had too many bad experiences with ink cartridges printers that I would not take one even for free. While the ink-jet printers cost a lot less when you buy them when you add up the successive cartridge costs and the problems that they make you go through, investing up front in an ink tank printer will start making more sense. Over the years, the cost of ink tank printers has gone down quite a bit which makes them even more alluring. The HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 printer (₹13,895) is one of the most affordable int tank printers on the market and in this article, we will see whether it is cutting corners to meet that price or it is as good as the company says. Here is our review of the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 printer:
HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 Specifications

In the table below, you can find all the important specifications that you need to know about the printer. These specifications will help you determine if the printer will suffice your needs or not. For most home and office users, the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 will be enough, however, it is still good to check the specifications before buying anything. If you want a detailed list of all its specifications, you can get it on HP’s official website.
Name    HP Ink Tank Wireless 419
Dimensions    525 x 310 x 158 mm
Weight    4.67 kg
Print Technology    HP Thermal Inkjet
Functions    Print, Scan, and Copy
Max Input Sheets    60
Printing Resolution    4800 x 1200 optimized dpi color
Connectivity    USB, WiFi, HP ePrint
Scan Speed    Up to 21 Seconds
Scan Resolution    1200 x 1200 dpi
Print Speed    Black & white - 14s / Color - 18s
Compatibility    Windows and macOS
LCD Screen    ICON LCD
Recommended Monthly Usage    400 to 800 pages
Ink Tank Life    Up to 8,000 color or 15,000 black pages
Warranty    1 Year Limited Warranty
Design and Build Quality

The HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 is a compact printer which will not take much space on your desk. It features a retractable paper input panel along with foldable paper output panel. I love the printers that have the paper intake at the top-back as it just makes life so much easier and the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 brings the same system. Since the paper intake system can be closed, it also prevents the printer from eating dust when not in use.

On the whole, the printer boasts of solid build quality. The body is made from high-quality plastic which feels premium to the touch. The only thing that I don’t like is the smooth touch plastic used at the top of the printer. It is made even worse by the use of glossy blue color. That might be a personal bias but the glossy blue plastic top makes it feel like a children’s toy and I am not very fond of that. That said, it is my personal opinion and you might like this design choice.

Design HP Ink Tank Wireless 419

When it comes to the design, the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 looks like all the other printers with some differences. The front of the printer houses the paper output tray while the top houses all the controls. Along with the controls, There’s a small LCD panel where you can see the printing status. The right side of the printer hosts the ink tank where the tanks themselves are made of transparent plastic allowing you to easily see the ink level.

Design and Build Quality HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 2

There is nothing on the left side of the printer as both the power and the wired connector are at the back. Overall, I am quite happy with the build quality of the printer. Not only it is compact, but it is also very light coming at just 4.67 Kg. You can move around this printer quite easily if you don’t have set a permanent place for the printer.
Connection and Compatibility

HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 brings enough connectivity options and allows you to send prints to the printer using a number of devices. It is not only compatible with both Windows and macOS operating system but also offers mobile printing services for iOS and Android devices (more on this later). As far as connectivity is concerned, you can either use the wired connection or go the wireless route.

Design and Build Quality HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 3

Connecting the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 to your computer using a wire is pretty easy. Just use the USB connector that comes in the box and connect the printer to your computer. It literally took just a few seconds for the printer to show up on my computer and I was able to print documents instantaneously. That is how easy the wired connection is.

HP Smart Print

If you want to use the printer with multiple devices, you can use wireless internet connectivity. I love the wireless connectivity on a printer as it allows me to keep the printer away from my work desk and still be able to print documents. The wireless set up will take a few minutes as you will have to first make the printer available on your WiFi and then connect your devices. While it takes a few minutes, the setup process itself is pretty easy.

Finally, the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 also allows you to print documents and images directly from the smartphone using its ePrint technology. All you need to do is download the HP Smart app (Android / iOS), and you can start printing. What I love about the HP Smart app is that it is incredibly easy to use and very well designed. It is by far the best printer companion app I have used in a while.
Printing and Performance

We tested the printing and performance of the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 by printing dozens of documents and pictures. We used documents with difficult fonts along with scanned documents, IDs, emails, and more. After printing dozens of documents and pictures, I am happy to report that the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 brings exceptional print quality. The ink on the print is precise and never smudges. The paper remains pristine and doesn’t show any ink overflow on the edges.

Printing and Performance 1

As far as pictures are concerned, we used the normal A4 size paper as we didn’t have the glossy photo paper at hand. However, seeing the details in the A4 sheets, I am assuming that that using photo paper will result in quality printed photographs. The print speed is fairly good with the printer churning out 15-18 prints when only using black ink and 12-14 prints when using color prints. Note that these figures are for text documents only and if you are going to print documents filled with images or images only, your print rate will vary.

Something that I will mention is that the printer takes a few seconds after you send the print job before it starts printing. It might be a little annoying if you send a ton of individual documents. However, since the delay only happens at the start, printing documents with multiple pages is not a worry. I have seen this delay in many budget printers and this is not something exclusive to the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419. This should not influence your buying decision, however, it is something that I noticed and you will too.
Scanning and Copying

When it comes to scanning documents, the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 is nothing exceptional. It takes the usual 10-20 seconds to scan a document which is normal for a printer in this price range. Copying is a bit faster and the printer supports multiple copies. Overall, I would say that the printer’s scanning ability is nothing out of the ordinary but at the same time, it is not terrible either.

Scanning and Copying
HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 vs Competition

While the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 is moderately priced, it is not the only printer in this price range. It is facing tough competition from the likes of Epson EcoTank L3150 and the Canon Pixma G3000 which are available on Amazon at similar prices. While I have not used both of these printers before, a quick look at their ratings and specs sheet shows me that they are good printers and offer both advantages and disadvantages over the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419.

The HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 is not beating the competition by a clear margin. So, even though it is a really good printer, it is not the only one. That will make your choice a little bit difficult. The bottom line is that you will be happy if you buy the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 as there was not one thing that turned me off while using this printer. That being said, if there is something that you didn’t like about this printer, you don’t have to settle as there are options on the market.

Pros:

    Wired and wireless connectivity options
    Excellent iOS and Android apps for mobile printing
    Good print quality
    Compact and light
    Ink Tank Support

Cons:

    Not a fan of the blue plastic top

SEE ALSO: HP Omen 15 Review: Thin, Light, and Extremely Powerful
HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 Review: A Good Budget Ink Tank Printer

I used the HP Ink Tank Wireless 419 for a couple of days and printed dozens of pages using text documents, scanned documents, and images. In my testing, I found the print quality to be exceptional. The build quality of the printer is also quite good. Overall, I didn’t find any reason that should make anyone not buy this printer. Ever since the beginning of 2019, Samsung has announced a surprisingly huge number of smartphones including its budget M-series, premium mid-range A-series, and the flagship S-series. The Korean giant finally took the leap to re-capture its lost market share to your flood of Chinese phone makers, and the Galaxy A30 fits right into this picture.

Galaxy A30 (starts at Rs 16,990) certainly is a desirable package, with its taller AMOLED screen, tiny notch, shimmery back panel, dual cameras, and a moderately huge battery. And yes, the 3.5mm headphone jack is still here and so is the USB Type-C port that we have been asking phone makers to bring to the budget/ mid-range segment.

galaxy a30 rear panel

Samsung was kind enough to lend us the black variant of the Galaxy A30 and no, it isn’t really as shiny and iridescent as the Galaxy A50, but goes up against the company’s own Galaxy M30. I’ve been using the device as my secondary, alongside the Galaxy A50, and here’s how my experience with the Galaxy A30 has been:
Galaxy A30: Specifications
Dimensions    158.5 x 74.5 x 7.7 mm
Display
    6.4-inch Full-HD+
Super AMOLED
Processor    octa-core Exynos 7904 (2x 1.8GHz, Cortex A73 + 6x 1.6GhHz Cortex A53)
GPU    Mali-G71
RAM    4GB
Internal Storage    64GB. expandable up to 256GB
Rear Cameras    16MP (F/1.7) + 5MP (F/2.2) ultra-wide
Front Camera    16MP (F/2.0)
Operating System    Android 9 Pie-based One UI
Connectivity    Wi-Fi 802.11 ac, dual VoLTE, Bluetooth 5.0, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, NFC, USB Type-C, 3.5mm headphone jack
Sensors    Accelerometer, Magnetometer, Ambient Light, Proximity, and Gyroscope
Battery    4,000mAh and 15W charging
Colors    Black, Red, Blue
Galaxy A30: What’s in The Box

The unboxing experience for the Galaxy A30 is about the same as its elder sibling, the Galaxy A50, except for that it comes with a slide-out cover. You’ll still get almost every accessory you expect to see bundled with a smartphone these days.

Here’s everything you will find in the Galaxy A30 box:

    Galaxy A30 handset
    15W charging adapter
    USB Type-C cable
    1x Silicone case
    1x Earphones
    1x SIM ejector pin
    User Manuals

Galaxy A30: Design and Build

If you’ve read our Galaxy A50 review, then the build of this smartphone would only be a refresher for you – minus the beautiful and colorful gradient rear panel of its elder sibling. The Galaxy A30 also boasts a “glasstic” build, which is a mix of glass and plastic and the black variant with us feels like a darker shade of gray. The rear panel reflects light to give you a streak-like pattern, which does look quite awesome to me, but it also feels plasticky to the touch, which I don’t really fancy.

My only qualm against the plastic panel here will have to be that it scratches quite easily, similar to the Galaxy A50, and that could make the device look shabby and aged quicker than one might expect. The curved design of the same makes for a comfortable in-hand grip, which in sync with the lightweight feel, makes for decent user experience.

There’s a dual-rear camera and physical fingerprint sensor on the rear, which was a relief and snappy as compared to the sluggish in-display scanner on the Galaxy A50. Since the smartphone is taller and huge, the fingerprint sensor may seem like it has been placed a tad bit higher and that you need to stretch your finger to reach it, but once you’ve been using the device for a few days, you’ll get used to its placement.

Moving on, I want to bring to your notice that the Galaxy A30 and Galaxy M30 look quite similar on the front and back, offer the exact same internal specs, almost all connectivity features, ports, and more are alike. The M30 includes a bigger 5,000mAh battery and it’s heftier than the A30, but we’ll talk more about it below.g
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Galaxy A30 (Left) and Galaxy M30 (Right)
Galaxy A30 (Left) and Galaxy M30 (Right)
Ports
Buttons
SIM tray

The button and ports placement here is the same as Samsung’s recent premium budget offerings, with the tactile plastic power key and volume rocker sitting on the right. You’ll find a single bottom-firing speaker (which is o’t really loud and produces a tinny sound), 3.5mm headphone jack, and USB Type-C port all sitting at the bottom. The single triple-slot SIM tray sits on the left.
Galaxy A30: Display

Turning our attention to the front, the Galaxy A30 is exactly identical to the Galaxy M30 & Galaxy A50. There’s no difference as they all use the same Super AMOLED panel from the Korean giant, which is 6.4-inch tall with a Full-HD+ (1080 x 2340 pixels) resolution, and a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. There’s Corning Gorilla Glass 3 on top for protection purpose.

I feel like I’m repeating myself, but the display panel on the Galaxy A30 is gorgeous. The colors obviously are a little saturated (not accurate as the Galaxy S10 lineup) to make all the iconography and content pop. It is really vibrant, the blacks are deep, it performs excellently even under harsh lighting, and the Infinity-U notch at the top and thick bezel below are non-intrusive. The content-viewing experience is splendid.
Galaxy A30: Performance

Samsung Galaxy A30 is powered by the Exynos 7904 processor, which is the same processor found inside the Galaxy M30 as well. The architecture of this chipset is slightly different when compared to traditional octa-core chipsets, as it features two Cortex A-73 cores clocked at 1.8GHz and six Cortex A-53 cores clocked at 1.6GHz for better efficiency in everyday tasks.

galaxy a30 multi-tasking

I have regularly been using this smartphone for the past week and there hasn’t been any instance of lag or frame drop until date. The Galaxy A30 has breezed through most of the tasks that I threw at it, multi-tasking was quick and handy, Android Pie feels snappy, and even apps like Adobe Premiere Clips or Snapchat run smoothly.

As for the gaming performance, well, I once again hopped into PUBG Mobile and this time around the title adopted medium graphics setting by default. The game ran pretty smooth for the most part, with no major janks or frame drops, but they were pretty evident and disrupted the gameplay while driving vehicles. If you tone down the graphics to low and balanced, then it runs more smoothly and you can score a ton of Chicken Dinners.

PUBG Mobile is what the mobile gaming community is currently glued to, and so am I, as this was the only major title that I tested on the Galaxy A30. If the smartphone smoothly runs this title, then it wouldn’t really have issues pushing the envelope to accommodate a myriad of similar graphics-intensive titles like Mortal Combat X, Injustice 2, and Asphalt 9 among others.
Galaxy A30: Benchmarks

As usual, we ran the Geekbench 4 and AnTuTu benchmark for the Galaxy A30 as well and you can find the results attached right here:

galaxy a30 benchmarks

Samsung’s Exynos 7904 chipset is said to be comparable to the Snapdragon 636 in terms of performance, which we have already seen, but in terms of benchmarks, it seems closer to the Snapdragon 632 SoC. The ZenFone Max M2 touts 1257 and 4809 as its single- and multi-core Geekbench 4 scores, with the AnTuTu benchmark score sitting around 103,000.
Galaxy A30: Cameras

Unlike the Galaxy A50 or the Galaxy M30, the Galaxy A30 comes with a dual rear-camera module with a primary 16MP (f/1.7) sensor and 5MP (f/2.2) ultra-wide angle sensor, with over 120-degree field of view. The camera app on the device comes loaded with a myriad of features as well, except for the lack of video features, like slo-mo and hyperlapse. You still have the Pro mode and panorama options available to you though.

Putting all that aside, here are some camera samples we captured using the Galaxy A30.

    Daylight Samples

You can see in the daylight samples attached below that the Galaxy A30 is able to capture an ample amount of detail and the images look sharp, with an obvious oversaturation that has been induced to the Scene Optimizer baked into the camera app. The device boasts a high dynamic range and the images look social media-ready, requiring only a bit of touch-up.
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    Low-light Samples

The images captured during the night time also are pretty detailed and look good, but you shouldn’t expect too much detail when zooming in and expect them to appear warm when compared to other devices. Also, there’s some visible noise in some of the images below, otherwise they look pretty decent and can be deemed worthy of social media status.
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    Wide-angle Samples

Galaxy A30 packs an ultra wide-angle sensor, something which now seems to be creeping down to new multi-camera phones. It gives you another mode to play around with, which means having the leeway to experiment. Here are some of the samples that we captured and you can easily notice the “fish-eye effect” on the edges some of the ultra wide-angle pictures:
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Standard
Ultra wide-angle
Standard
Ultra wide-angle
Standard
Ultra wide-angle
Standard
Ultra wide-angle

    Selfies/Portraits

The Galaxy A30 sports a 16MP (f/2.0) sensor on the front, which is the same one that we have already seen on the Galaxy M30, and the image quality is okay-ish at best. In true Samsung fashion, the selfies do have details but they’re usually soft (check out George’s selfie below) and the edge detection is finicky. The device can recognize multiple subjects in the frame, but it doesn’t guarantee a perfect picture (part of Durgesh’s hair blurred).
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    Galaxy A30 vs Galaxy M30: Camera Comparison

The camera module on the Galaxy M30 isn’t a whole lot different from the one on Galaxy A30, except for that it comprises a third sensor as well. In contrast to the 16MP(f/1.7) + 5MP (f/2.2) dual rear camera module on the Galaxy A30, Samsung has included a 13MP (f/1.9) + 5MP (f/2.2) + 5MP (f/2.2) setup on the Galaxy M30.

It’s difficult to gauge why Samsung decided not to include the depth sensor on the more expensive A-series device, but here are some of the camera samples we captured using both the devices:
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Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30
Galaxy A30
Galaxy M30

You can clearly see in the images above that Galaxy A30 may capture a little more detail and pull in a little more light, however, the Galaxy M30 isn’t too far behind. The pictures captured via both of these devices are pretty alike, with the A30 being on the cooler and M30 being slightly on the warmer side. There are times like the bicycles tire collection & selfie portraits, where I feel the Galaxy M30 trumps the A30, however, the latter will offer more detail in low-light situations.
Galaxy A30: Video Recording

The Galaxy A30 is capable of recording videos up to 1080p resolution at 30fps from both the front and rear cameras, which is saddening to see at a time when several affordable phones are offering 4K recording capabilities. We have attached sample video recordings down below, one in standard and second in wide-angle, to show you how A30 performs:

While the colors reproduction is great, there’s no stabilization on board and videos from Galaxy A30 look pretty jittery and shaky. It would be great if Samsung adds support for EIS via a software update else the videos are pretty average, well, at least for now.
Galaxy A30: Software

Samsung is offering its latest software experience, One UI, with its A-series offerings. The Galaxy A30 also runs Android Pie-based One UI, out-of-the-box and it’s a refreshing upgrade over the bloatware and clunky Samsung Experience UI days. I don’t think I need to dwell into the feature set offered here as you can read about it right here, but I would add that Samsung still needs to tone down animations to offer a smoother experience on its lower-specced offerings.

Note: I would like to point out that Samsung has been good with updates on Galaxy A-series phone so far, with the A30 receiving the March security patch this week. Hope it continues down the line as well.

    Widevine L1 & Camera2 API Support

The Galaxy A30, as you can see below, packs Widevine L1 certification, meaning you can watch Netflix or Prime Video in HD, and a limited Camera2 API support, which means you cannot use Google Camera mod without doling out the necessary permissions via ADB. It, however, comes as a relief that the native camera performance is pretty decent.

galaxy a30 info
Galaxy A30: Battery Life

The Galaxy A30 sports a 4,000mAh battery and a 15W fast charger, similar to the elder sibling – Galaxy A50, and that’s easily good enough to last a whole day on a single charge, especially for low and medium usage customers. If you’re going to be using the smartphone for a moderate volume of calls, texting, surfing the Internet and consuming videos on the daily, well, then you’ll get a screen-on-time of around six hours.

While we do get a fast charging brick in the box, the smartphone doesn’t really juice up that speedily. It takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes for Galaxy A30 to go from 0 to 75 percent and that’s just okay-ish.
Galaxy A30: Should You Buy This Over Galaxy M30?

The Galaxy A30 is a pretty good device for the price segment it’s sitting in, offering an AMOLED display, modest internals, and a dual-camera module with an ultra wide-angle lens. There’s also a better software experience, with the latest flavor of Android, and a massive battery as well.

However, Samsung’s mid-range Galaxy M30 smartphone offers almost exactly the same specifications, but with a triple rear-camera module that’s comparable to the Galaxy A30 and a larger 5,000mAh battery. It even offers a similar build, with a gradient plastic rear and a bit more heft, something I grew used to after carrying around the device for a few days.

Well, there’s a catch. The Galaxy M30 is an online-only offering and starts at Rs. 14,990 whereas the Galaxy A30 (starts at Rs 16,999) is available both online and offline. If you happen to be reading this, then the Galaxy M30 is undoubtedly the better bang-for-the-buck choice over the Galaxy A30 for online buyers.

I know you can also push your budget a little higher, say maybe closer to Rs 20,000, to obviously get the Poco F1 (starts at Rs 19,999). Offline sellers will still see an influx of buyers for the Galaxy A30 because of the brand trust Samsung has built over the years.

PROS:

    Beautiful AMOLED screen
    Lightweight & comfortable
    Above average cameras
    One UI sure is refreshing
    Fast fingerprint sensor

CONS:

    Glasstic panel scratches quickly
    Overpriced, even for offline users

samsung galaxy a30 rear panel
The glossy rear panel reflects light at night, looking all shimmery!

SEE ALSO – Samsung Galaxy A50 Review: A Worthy Mid-ranger
Samsung Galaxy A30  Review: Thank You, Next

Samsung has cleverly made a mid-range smartphone which might not undercut its own online-only Galaxy M30 for modern e-commerce-friendly users, however, those who still prefer to try out a device and buy them offline will only have the Galaxy A30 on offer. It surely is a pretty relevant offering for the specs, features, an

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