vivo V30 Pro 5G Review | Geek Lifestyle

ZEISS with Aura Light 3.0. Match made in cinema-portrait heaven!

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As mentioned during our vivo V30 5G review, the midrange smartphone market segment is such an interesting line to dissect and analyze. As a stepping stone (of sorts) to flagship territory, midrange devices offer a huge runway to experiment and be creative with their product mix. And with the vivo V30 Pro 5G, the brand surely did.

Mixing an iconic V-series staple with a clear vivo flagship indicator, we now have the first ever V-series smartphone with ZEISS! These are exciting times, people!

It’s not everyday where products and features once solely reserved for the upper echelons of the product pyramid be shared (not trickled down, fyi) across a different segment. And yet, we have exactly that with the vivo V30 Pro 5G.

Remember this isn’t a trickling down or passing down of past tech. This is current gen collaboration with ZEISS given to the V-Series. Why should this excite you? And does that alone make up for the additional price increase for the vivo V30 Pro? Well, this review should clear a few things up.



While most brands would create design distinction between subsegments of a particular series, vivo opted to present us pretty much the exact same design regardless if you get a Pro version or the base version of the vivo V30 Series 5G.

In an almost meme-able manner, both the vivo V30 5G and the vivo V30 Pro seem like the exact same phone – at least on the surface.

If it’s not just for the additional camera and the ZEISS logo on the onyx square module, you could say both phones are identical.

Corporate needs you to find the difference between these two.

If you’ve read our review of the vivo V30 5G, you know what to expect when it comes to design.

The vivo V30 Pro 5G that we got has the same Petal White colorway of that of the V30 5G model. As for size and proportions, the phone is exactly the same. The Pro version does feel a bit more solid compared to the V30 5G model and for some reason has a smoother rear cover texture than the base model. If it were not for these very minute difference, both phones could be a 100% copy of each other.

That being said, the design is exceptionally gorgeous – and playful. This is indicative of a market that’s always on the move, loves to travel, and makes a conscious decision to stay current with recent trends and style.

What’s more, in a way, by not creating a huge differentiating factor (at least design-wise), it shows how much the brand values the entire series and not just favor one model over the other. The vivo V30 5G is a complete experience on its own, and if you have the means and the need to enhance it just a bit, then there’s the Pro version for you. This I can respect.


Binge-Watching Factor

Similar with the vivo V30 5G, the vivo V30 Pro 5G also sports a large 6.78” AMOLED Display (1260 x 2800 pixels) that supports HDR10+, up to 120Hz refresh rate, and 2800 nits of peak brightness for amazing display quality regardless of environmental lighting conditions.

And, similar with the vivo V30 5G, our only qualms would be the single-firing speaker on the unit. Especially for the price-point that it asks, we were hoping that the Pro version would at least have 2 speakers now. As it is, the physical structure of the unit is virtually similar to that of its more affordable buddy.


Gaming Prowess

While majority of the vivo V30 Pro 5G mirrors that of the vivo V30 5G, the internals tell a different story altogether. For one, the Pro version is opted to swap the Qualcomm Snapdragon 7 Gen 3 chipset with an equally robust MediaTek Dimensity 8200 processor. This is further supported by 12GB of RAM (+12GB Extended) and 512GB of internal storage.

While people may perceive MediaTek’s chipset to be slightly less desirable than it’s Qualcomm counterpart, the Dimensity 8200 actually performs slightly better than the 7 Gen 3 from our time with it.

Firing up our usual roster of games, the vivo V30 Pro 5G opened Mobile Legends: Bang-Bang, Asphalt 9, and Final Fantasy VII Ever Crisis on max graphic settings. It’s not surprising that this 4nm chipset can run these popular games with cranked up framerates and graphics.

What’s interesting is when we opened Genshin Impact. Maybe the MediaTek Dimensity 8200 is just more optimized for the game, but upon first starting, the recommended graphic setting has the game set to medium already. In contrast, when we opened the game with the vivo V30 5G, it set the graphics to low on default.

Of course, you can crank and overclock the settings as we did for this unit as well, and we were able to still enjoy the game without much hiccups.

That being said, both vivo V30 5G and vivo V30 Pro 5G have marvelous midrange processors that operate at an almost flagship-level so, really, firing up any game with these units shouldn’t be a problem.


Geek Photoshoot Capabilities

Perhaps one of the things that excite us the most with the vivo V30 Pro 5G is ZEISS’s involvement with the current mid-range line. Before the vivo x ZEISS collaboration has been relegated solely to their flagship offerings starting with the vivo X60. Ever since then, ZEISS and vivo has been upping the game of what a smartphone can do in terms of mobile photography and videography. We were lucky enough to test this with the vivo X80 Pro and had fun with the various ZEISS filters on its rear camera module. We even gushed about what each of these filters do and their cinematic influences. So, to be able to bring this type of exciting photo and video experience to a mid-range is a godsend.

While the vivo V30 5G already has 2 large 50MP cameras (one for the main, and one for ultra-wide), the Pro version adds another set of 50MP camera to take exceptionally amazing Portrait shots. It also boasts of using a large 1.149” SONY IMX920 sensor – the largest on a V-series phone – for the main 50MP Wide Camera of the unit. This is followed by the same 119°field of view 50MP Ultra-wide camera found on the vivo V30 5G. To round things off, the vivo V30 Pro 5G has a 50MP SONY IMX816 Professional Portrait Camera with a 50mm focal length for realistic and vivid portraits.

What’s more all these camera systems, including the 50MP selfie camera, has been calibrated, tested, and optimized by ZEISS to adhere to their unparalleled standards. This means that colors are more vivid, images are crisper, and regardless if you’re using the rear camera module or the front-facing ones, you gain access to a host of ZEISS-specific filters which mimics iconic ZEISS lenses used in cinematography.

You can choose between 4 distinct ZEISS Portrait filters namely Biotar (our favorite), Sonnar, Planar, and Distagon. There’s also a Cine-flare style where the camera intelligently adds lens flair to your shots to add much needed drama. There’s also a cinematic portrait mode where the aspect ratio changes to 23.1:1 or anamorphic widescreen mode.

The beauty with using any of these filters is how it drastically changes the bokeh effect light effects from standard circular ones to elongated ones.

The Biotar in particular adds a dizzying spiral bokeh which helps set your shot apart from the rest of the pack.

Check the spiral bokeh

As amazing as that is, the ZEISS cinematic filter also applies to the vivo V30 Pro’s video-taking capabilities (well, somewhat).

There’s a ZEISS filter mode when taking videos and you can clock the framerate down to 24fps when shooting at 1080p. This gives a much more natural, rich, and cinema-like feel to your videos as well.

Lastly, there’s the revamped Aura Light Portrait system. We’ve covered how wonderful this is on our vivo V30 5G review but imagine having this brilliant lighting system and combining it with the new ZEISS filters! This is a match made in cinema-heaven and we are here for it!

All-in-all, the camera system on the vivo V30 Pro 5G is the best we’ve seen on a smartphone as far as creative mixes go. We could even say that this might be in the running for the best camera smartphone for the year DXOMARK scores be damned. Because while other more expensive flagship phones may add better hardware, you’d be hard-pressed to find a smartphone that combines two iconic imaging solutions in one handy package than the vivo V30 Pro 5G. Simply put Aura Light 3.0 + Triple ZEISS Flagship camera = unlimited creative potential.

Here are some more photos taken with the vivo V30 Pro 5G


Everyday Reliability

Similar to vivo V30 5G, the Pro version comes with a large 5000mAh battery and a whopping 80W Flash Charging capability. According to the brand, the phone has about 4 years of battery durability – ensuring that the unit can keep up with you and your needs throughout the years. The device also operates on Funtouch OS 14 based on Android 14 and has an IP54 Dust & Water-proof rating. Lastly, the vivo V30 Pro 5G has passed a 50-month anti-aging professional evaluation by the vivo laboratory, achieving guaranteed smooth performance for 50 months.


Final Geek Lifestyle Verdict

For Php 34,999, the vivo V30 Pro 5G is one of the best smartphones you can purchase at this price category. It takes everything we loved from the vivo V30 5G and adds its own little twist thanks to the inclusion of a dedicated flagship Portrait Camera and ZEISS wizardry. What we love about the entire series is how vivo offered two strong choices for those looking for a powerful and dependable midrange device. If you’re not into cinematography and photography but want a mid-range phone that has flagship-like internals and features, then you can opt for just the standard vivo V30 5G. But if you love to add drama and creativity to everyday occasions like just getting your afternoon coffee, you may want to consider the vivo V30 Pro 5G especially for its standout cinematic portrait features. If you want to ensure that your photos blatantly stand out from the rest, take this phone for a spin and tinker with all the goodies from both vivo and ZEISS. It’s going to unleash the creative in you.

Interested in owning one? Check out these helpful links:

vivo V30 Pro 5G Specs:

  • MediaTek Dimensity 8200 (4nm)
  • Mali-G610 MC6
  • 12GB RAM (+12GB Extended RAM) /  512GB Storage
  • 6.78-inch Curved AMOLED 1.5k display, 120Hz refresh rate, Schott α glass
  • Rear camera: 50MP f/1.9  23mm SONY IMX 920 OIS Wide Camera+ 50MP Super-Wide-angled Camera (Optical angle of 119˚, 109.2˚ after distortion correction) + 50MP SONY IMX 812 Telephoto Portrait Camera f/1.9 50mm
  • Front camera: 50MP f/2.0  20mm AF Group Selfie
  • ZEISS Optics
  • 3G, LTE, 5G Dual SIM
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, under display fingerprint scanner, gyro, USB Type-C
  • 5000mAh battery with 80W Flash Charge support
  • Android 14 with Funtouch 14
  • Pearl White
  • PHP 34,999