Nokia Lumia 830: Battery Life
Another downgrade on the Lumia 830 compared to the Lumia 930 is a lower capacity battery – it’s down from 2,420mAh to 2,200mAh. It’s a small change but every little counts.
After a week we’ve found we get between 12 to 14 hours of use from the Lumia 830 depending on how heavily you use it. If you stick mainly to web browsing, music listening and some light gaming then 14 hours is no problem – that’s enough to get from waking to bedtime with a little space.
Throw in more gaming, regular camera use and some mapping and you’re looking at close to 12 hours, maybe less if you’re particularly busy or demanding. That’s still enough to get through the day, but you may need to employ power saving measures later on. Most days we found we had 10 20% capacity remaining, which is an okay buffer.
That still means nightly charges, not that this is unusual even for top-end phones. But, like the Lumia 735, the 830 isn’t the fastest charger. It charges at 35% per hour, or slightly over three hours for a full charge. That’s not dreadful, but we’ve seen faster from top-end phones and some cheaper phones like the Moto G 2.
The moral of the story? Don’t forget to charge overnight.
Nokia: Call and Sound Quality
Call quality on the Lumia 830 is very good. The earpiece is loud, clear and doesn’t distort at all. We had no problems with calls dropping out or poor connections. Active noise cancelling is on-hand to deal with noisy conditions, which we found worked well.
Sound from built-in speaker is average by comparison. The mono speaker is at the rear and it’s only good enough for speakerphone duty. It’s loud and doesn’t distort, but there’s no real detail present when watching videos and listening to music. To some this won’t matter, but if it does to you then the Lumia 830 will disappoint.
Should I buy the Lumia 830?
It all comes down to the camera, really. If you value the superior low-light performance the optical image stabilization affords, it’s a very good option. Few phones can match it at this price in that particular department, and as we saw it trades blows with the iPhone 6 Plus here, too.
Outside this very specific aspect, however, it’s trickier. Yes, it’s great in low light, but it’s not measurably better in other areas than other phones in this bracket. It’s also weaker in some areas, such as the continuing lack of a proper HDR mode and the clumsy panorama mode.
But it’s price and performance that will swing this decision for most. When you consider the LG G3, which has a much faster processor and an extremely capable camera, is available for just £50 more SIM-free or the same amount per month on similar contracts, it’s harder to ignore the Lumia 830’s sluggish processor.
It’s a tough one. The Lumia 830 is, mostly, a very good phone, but before you buy you need to make peace with some tricky weaknesses.
It’s stylish, good value and takes great photos in low light, but the Lumia 830 up against some stiff competition. You won’t find a better low light camera at this price, but you will find better all-round phones.
How we test phones
We test every mobile phone we review thoroughly. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly and we use the phone as our main device over the review period. We’ll always tell you what we find and we never, ever, accept money to review a product.
Score in detail
Battery Life 7
Calls & Sound 8
Screen Quality 8