Since its appearance, the Galaxy A series has found many fans and quickly became an important part of Samsung’s smartphone business, especially in Ukraine, because we have a stable demand for more affordable (compared to flagships) phones. Therefore, the announcement of new Galaxy A is no less important event for the average buyer than the appearance of new flagships. In turn, we will be happy to share our impressions of the new products and talk about their features.
Galaxy A54 and Galaxy A34 specifications
|Samsung Galaxy A54 5G||Samsung Galaxy A34 5G|
|Dimensions and weight||158.2 x 76.7 x 8.2 mm
202 g, IP67
|161.3 x 78.1 x 8.2 mm
199 g, IP67
|Colors||Lime, graphite, lilac, white||Lime, graphite, lilac, silver|
|RAM and storage||6/128 GB + MicroSD (up to 1 TB)
8/256 GB + MicroSD (up to 1 TB)
|CPU||Exynos 1380 (5 nm)
4×2.4 GHz Cortex-A78 & 4×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55
|Mediatek Dimensity 1080 (6 нм)
2×2.6 GHz Cortex-A78 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55
|GPU||Mali-G68 MP5||Mali-G68 MC4|
|Wireless modules||Wi-Fi 6 2.4 + 5 GHz
|Wi-Fi 6 2.4 + 5 GHz
1080 x 2340 (FHD+)
1000 nits (HBM)
Corning Gorilla Glass 5
1080 x 2340 (FHD+)
Corning Gorilla Glass 5
|Main cameras||50.0 MP (AF, OIS, f/1.8) + 12.0 MP (FF, f/2.2) + 5.0 MP (FF, f/2.4)||48.0 MP (AF, OIS, f/1.8) + 8.0 MP (FF, f/2.2) + 5.0 MP (FF, f/2.4)|
|Selfie camera||32.0 MP (FF, f/2.2)||13 MP (FF, f/2.2)|
|Connector||USB 2.0 Type-C|
|ОС||Android 13, One UI 5.1|
|6/128 GB – 19 999 UAH
8/256 GB – 21 999 UAH
|6/128 GB – 15 999 UAH
8/256 GB – 17 599 UAH
In the box
The test smartphones came to the editorial office without supplied accessories, but the potential buyer should be prepared for the fact that the commercial device will have a standard delivery kit, which will only include the phone, cable, clip for the SIM tray, and documentation.
Design and usability
Manufacturers often use similar approaches to the design of products in different price segments, and in 2023 Samsung decided to make the new A-series as similar as possible to its S flagships. There is nothing surprising in this, moreover, it will be an advantage rather than a disadvantage for buyers.
In this case, the similarities concern primarily the case with flat edges, the absence of an “island” of the camera unit, as well as the similar aspect ratio of the screen (19.5:9 instead of 20:9).
It is expected that there are also differences – A34 and A54 are presented in brighter colors, as well as made of other case materials. The side frames of both models are plastic. Galaxy A54 has a glass back panel, and A34 has a matte plastic one.
As a result, all the latest models of the brand are similar in terms of ergonomics. They became a little lower and wider.
Simpler case materials could be written in the “cons” of the models, but in the hands, they do not feel simple or low-quality, just different. Moreover, even the matte plastic Galaxy A34 is quite pleasant to the touch.
The accessibility of the models is only hinted at by wider screen frames, but together with completely flat displays, they practically eliminate the chance of accidentally clicking on some element of the interface.
I would also like to note the brighter color range of smartphones – lilac and lime look bright in spring, and for strict connoisseurs of classic solutions, there is a graphite (dark gray) color.
Buttons and connectors are in their usual places, and the “hybrid” tray for two NanoSIMs or NanoSIMs and memory cards is on top. In general, if you like flat sides and slightly wider phones, then the ergonomics of the models will not cause any problems.
Smartphones received Super AMOLED displays with a resolution of 2340×1080 (FHD+) with support for a refresh rate of 120 Hz. The diagonals of the screens are 6.4″ for the Galaxy A54 5G and 6.6″ for the Galaxy A34 5G. If earlier the A-series included 3 smartphones, the diagonal of which increased according to the model number, now the “younger” conventionally has a larger screen.
The differences don’t end there. For the Galaxy A34, the peak brightness of the screen is declared at 1000 nits, and two options are available for setting the refresh rate: 60 and 120 Hz, they mention the possibility of dynamic frequency adjustment.
Samsung Galaxy A34 – Screen mode Saturated colors
In turn, the manufacturer does not specify the maximum brightness level for the Galaxy A54. In addition, the refresh rate in each mode can change dynamically: up to 60 Hz in standard mode, and up to 120 Hz in dynamic mode. Perhaps such differences are due to the use of different hardware platforms, or simply different display modules.
Samsung Galaxy A34 – Screen mode Natural colors
The A34 screen has a more saturated color rendering, when directly compared to the A54, the shades look a little less natural, but it is difficult to write this down as a disadvantage, it all depends on personal preferences.
Samsung Galaxy A54 – Screen mode Saturated colors
These observations confirm the colorimeter measurements – the A34 does have a wider color gamut even in the “Natural Colors” mode, while the same mode on the A54 shows compliance with the sRGB space.
Samsung Galaxy A54 – Screen Mode Natural Colors
In terms of brightness levels, we received figures at the level of 925 cd/m2, which is the threshold value for an editorial colorimeter, so we can conclude that both screens have high brightness (up to 1000 nits in high brightness mode).
Both models have standard image settings for Samsung smartphones. If you are used to the screens of flagships, then you will be able to notice that models in the middle price range are equipped with simpler matrices. But in general, the screens are perceived as very good, and bright, and images look good in most usage scenarios.
Sound and vibration
Galaxy A54 and A34 are equipped with stereo speakers (the second one is a speaker) and linear vibration motors. The latter provide a pleasant vibration when interacting with the navigation keys and while typing.
The speakers have good volume and generally play cleanly. Nuances are in the differences that allow you to draw parallels with the models’ screens. The sound of the Galaxy A34 is perceived to be slightly (at the level of error) louder and more voluminous, but less clean. Galaxy A54 is almost the same in terms of maximum volume, with a narrower frequency range, but at maximum volume, there is no feeling that the speakers are approaching the limit of their capabilities.
Manufacturers often try to unify similar smartphones, in particular, using the same hardware platforms. This could be expected considering the Galaxy A33 and A53 models, which were built on the Exynos 1280 system-on-chip. However, we have already discovered several differences and the platform is another one.
Galaxy A34 was based on the Mediatek Dimensity 1080 mobile platform, made according to the 6nm process, which includes 2 productive Cortex-A78 cores and 6 energy-efficient Cortex-A55 cores. The choice of processor for the Galaxy A54 model can be called more expected, because it is Exynos 1380 (5 nm), with 4 Cortex-A78 cores and 4 x Cortex-A55. Both smartphones are available in configurations with 6/128 and 8/256 GB of RAM and permanent memory. An option is available to expand the RAM using the built-in memory (2, 4, or 6 GB), you can install a memory card up to 1 TB instead of a second SIM card.
Galaxy A34 – test results
From the point of view of wireless communications, the models are generally the same: there is support for the Wi-Fi 6 standard (2.4 and 5 GHz), Bluetooth 5.3, and NFC. VoLTE worked in the Kyivstar network.
How do smartphones work in real life? In general, no problems. The speed is comfortable in all scenarios, be it using social network clients, messengers, office programs, cameras, or games. Of course, everything happens not as instantly as on the latest flagships, but at a comfortable speed. I’m sure many buyers will switch to these phones from 2-3 years old, or even older, models and they will feel an increase in speed.
Galaxy A54 – test results
It should also be noted that we did not test commercial phones, but pre-release test samples on relatively early software versions and in younger configurations with 6 GB of RAM – real devices will perform better. In particular, our sample Galaxy A54 showed slightly better results in synthetic tests, in daily use the speed of the phones was the same, but in games the Galaxy A34 allowed us to choose better graphics settings. The body temperature of both models under load remained comfortable in both cases.
Samsung Galaxy A54 and A34 run on Android 13 and OneUI 5.1. The interface and its settings are similar to other models of the brand. At today’s stage of development, One UI is one of the best interfaces for Android, you just need to take the time to study the settings, and find where the necessary items are.
It should be noted separately that the manufacturer promises to update OS versions on smartphones for 4 years and release security patches for 5 years. Such support requires additional resources from the brand and their cost is probably included in the price of the product, but taking into account the fact that the life cycle of smartphones is increasing, this is very good news for the buyer.
Another good news is the availability of promotional offers from YouTube Premium, Spotify, Sweet TV, and other content providers throughout the product life cycle.
Galaxy A54 and A34 cameras
Photo and video quality is often one of the reasons to upgrade an old smartphone, and the cameras have become one of the notable differences between the models. Let’s start with the Galaxy A34, with a set of 48 MP main modules (f/1.8, 26 mm), autofocus and support for optical stabilization, an 8 MP ultra-wide-angle camera (f/2.2, 123˚), and a 5 MP macro lens ( f/2.4).
The younger model takes photos at the level of previous generations, although on the bright A34 display, photos generally look good. The capabilities of such a module are enough to take photos of normal quality in not difficult conditions.
Photos taken with Galaxy A34 (main cameras)
At the same time, the 13 MP front camera (f/2.2) copes quite adequately with its functions.
Front camera photo on Galaxy A34
Galaxy A54 received an updated main module of 50 MP (f/1.8) with optical stabilization, an ultra-wide-angle camera of 12 MP (f/2.2), and a macro lens of 5 MP ( f/2.4). It is immediately noticeable that the older model shoots a level better in almost all aspects and is already able to show an acceptable result in less-than-ideal conditions – this is noticeable even when you are just taking a picture.
Photos taken with Galaxy A54 (main cameras)
The same can be said about the selfie module with a resolution of 32 MP (f/2.2), it has better detail, and better conveys skin color.
Front camera photo on Galaxy A54
Camera settings look identical: there are standard shooting modes, including night and manual modes, high-resolution sensors allowed to implement a two-fold zoom with almost no loss of quality, and for front cameras, you can choose wider or narrower shooting angles.
Galaxy A54 and A34 battery life
Smartphones received batteries with a capacity of 5000 mAh with support for fast charging with a power of 25 W. For both models, the manufacturer claims a working time of 2 days of typical use.
In practice, everyone has their own “typical” usage scenario, but in my case, Galaxy A54 (which I used more), with active use of social networks and messengers, listening to music, connected smartwatch, confidently held on throughout the day with a reserve of 30-40% battery charge by the evening.
A fully discharged smartphone was charged from a 60-watt GaN charger in about 2.5 hours.
The A34 model left the impression of having better battery life and showed a better result in the test despite the larger display-diagonal.