Connect with us

Hey what are you looking for?

Elephone S8 Review / Test

Elephone S8 Review - China Phablet with 2K Display

Updated by Timo Altmeyer on February 16, 2022

The Elephone S8 is a so-called "tri-bezel-less" smartphone, with focus on the high-resolution display. Although the trend has recently started towards the 18: 9 display, the manufacturer has equipped the S8 with a well-established 16: 9 panel. As the smartphone suggests, more in this review.

Our rating

Foreword: Elephone S8

In the past few months, the Chinese smartphone manufacturer "Elephone" has been rather quiet. After the extremely successful and convincing one  Elephone P9000 , the manufacturer's success in the constantly changing smartphone market was largely absent. With the Elephone S8, Elephone is trying to gain a foothold again and presents a smartphone with well-equipped hardware in a tri-bezel-less design that is convincing at least on the data sheet, which does not follow the 18: 9 trend and continues to have a conventional display with 16: 9 aspect ratio sets.

Packaging of the Elephone S8

Design, workmanship and delivery

The Elephone S8 is a smartphone in the so-called tri-bezel-less design. The term “bezel-less”, also called “edge-less” by Samsung, describes a smartphone with particularly narrow transitions between the display and the edge of the housing. The term “tri-bezel-less” means a smartphone that has such small gaps on 3 sides. Probably the most famous smartphone of this type is this  Xiaomi Mi Mix 2 .

With lateral gaps (bezel) of 2.3 mm and an upper gap of 4 mm, the bezels are significantly smaller than on many other China “tri-bezel-less” smartphones. The overall dimensions of the smartphone are 152 x 80.7 x 8.6 mm. The weight is 195g.

Side view of the S8 smartphone

 The Elephone S8 is constructed as follows: 

The front is the high-resolution 2K display in 16: 9 format. Due to the design, the front camera and an additional soft light are located below the display. There is also a capacitive and multifunctional home button with an integrated fingerprint scanner below the display. There are no other capacitive buttons for smartphone control. There is also no notification LED. The auricle and proximity sensor are located above the display.

Front view of the Elephone S8

The metal housing frame is equipped with a volume rocker and a power button on the right. The shimmering purple surface of the power button catches the eye. On the opposite side is the SIM slot, which can be equipped with two nano SIM cards. The top of the frame forms a single microphone. The underside of the frame is equipped with a USB-C socket in the middle and the speaker (mono) and a microphone on each side. Elephone does not have a 3.5 mm headphone jack. 

The smartphone is available with a blue, black or red (limited) case back with a glossy piano lacquer look. The back is not removable and consists of "3D Curved Lumia Glass", which feels a lot like plastic. Above is the clearly protruding main camera with a dual-tone LED flash next to it. In the lower third of the back is the printed manufacturer's logo, which perfectly matches the design of the smartphone.

Rear of the S8 smartphone

 The workmanship of the Elephone S8 is still acceptable. The buttons on the side sit neatly in the housing frame and have a good pressure point. The structured surface of the power button is positive. The housing frame and the back are firmly connected to one another without any large gaps. In general, the smartphone looks extremely high quality thanks to the matt black metal frame. One point of criticism is the slightly creaky back. The back feels hollow, especially below the main camera, which means that it gives way when pressure is applied.

The scope of delivery includes the smartphone, a suitable silicone protective cover, an EU-compatible charger, a USB-C cable, a USB-C to 3.5 mm adapter cable, a SIM needle and a multilingual user manual. A screen protector is already applied at the factory.

What's in the box


The display comes from Sharp, has a diagonal of 6 inches and is of the IPS type. The resolution of the panel is high-resolution 2560 x 1440 pixels, resulting in a point density of 489 PPI. Not following the 18: 9 trend, Elephone opted for a conventional aspect ratio of 16: 9. In contrast to many other tri-bezel-less smartphones with 18: 9 display, the smartphone is overall wider and therefore looks a bit clunky, at the same time you are spared unsightly black borders, because many apps and videos are not yet 18: 9 aspect ratio adjusted.

The display is not only razor-sharp, the display also impresses with a high-contrast image with strong, but not too saturated, color reproduction. "MiraVision" is available for individual color adjustment within the display settings. With the help of MiraVision, the contrast, saturation, image brightness, but also sharpness and color temperature can be adjusted as required and saved in profiles.

The viewing angle stability leaves nothing to be desired. No matter how you turn or tilt the display, the display is barely noticeably affected. The maximum display brightness is around 330 cd / m². Readability is impaired in strong sunshine or in direct light. The automatic brightness adjustment unfortunately reacts with a long delay.

The touchscreen recognizes up to 5 simultaneous inputs. The accuracy of the touchscreen is nothing to complain about. So-called ghost touches, i.e. a touch registration without actually touching the touchscreen, did not occur during the test phase. The display is protected by scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass 4.


When choosing a processor, Elephone opts for the MediaTek Helio X25, which is now rarely used. Many Chinese smartphone manufacturers have replaced this processor with the more energy-efficient MediaTek Helio P25.

The MediaTek Helio X25 is a Deca-Core (2016) processor that was introduced at the beginning of 20 and manufactured using the 10 nm process. The processor consists of a total of 3 clusters, which are divided into a high-performance cluster with 2 Cortex-A72 (2.5 GHz) cores, a performance cluster with 4 Cortex-A53 (2 GHz) cores and a power-saving cluster with 4 Cortex -A53 cores (1.55 GHz) subdivide. The composition is based on the ARM big.LITTLE architecture. The GPU of the system-on-chip is a Mali-T880. The storage equipment of the Elephone S8 amounts to a 4GB LPDDR3 main memory and a 64GB eMMC5.1 flash memory. A memory expansion using a microSD memory card is not intended!

In everyday life, the smartphone impresses with its satisfactory performance. Apps start almost without delay and the remaining RAM available for apps is also sufficient for smooth multitasking. The memory speed is an average of 4941 MB / s. The speed of the internal eMMC5.1 flash memory is a write speed of 135.55 MB / s and a read speed of 180.32 MB / s.

The S8 smartphone copes well with mobile games. However, this also shows that the Helio X25 is extremely energy-hungry and produces an enormous amount of waste heat. After an hour of gaming, not only does the battery drop significantly, the smartphone also gets comparatively warm at around 43 ° C. Also noticeable, but not unusual for a MediaTek Helio X25, is the significant reduction in performance after a very short time under full load. A more energy-efficient Helio P25 has a clear lead here!

user interface

The smartphone is delivered with Android 7.1.1, which is largely based on stock Android. Except for a few additional settings, such as gesture control, the TaskManager or MiraVision, there are hardly any differences to Stock Android. Interfering third-party apps are not noticeable on the device. The navigation via the multifunctional home button takes getting used to. One touch takes you back one page. Two touches bring you back to the home screen. Unfortunately, it also jumps back a page. If you hold the button, the task switcher opens.

The stability of the system cannot be criticized. Individual crashes can occur, but serious software errors did not come to light during the test phase. An update to Android 8 Oreo is in prospect. However, the manufacturer has not yet announced any further details. The first custom ROMs, such as the "Eragon ROM", are already available for the still quite new Elephone S8.


The camera equipment amounts to a rear main camera with 21 megapixel Sony IMX220 image sensor, an f / 2.0 aperture and a supporting dual-tone LED flash. The front camera has a resolution of 8 megapixels and uses a Sony IMX219 image sensor.

main camera

China smartphones in particular are not known to shine in terms of the recording quality of their cameras. The Elephone S8 is not an exception here either and only scores mediocre in terms of photo and video recording quality. The images shot with the main camera are streaked with clearly visible image noise in both good and bad lighting conditions. Typical for such a small sensor, with high resolution.

One of the main shortcomings of the main camera is the blurring towards the edges of the image. In addition, there is a sometimes significant loss of detail and an extremely low dynamic range. The color rendering is also less convincing. Colors are displayed fairly accurately, but overall the images appear less playful than rather boring. With increasingly poor lighting conditions, the image noise also increases and in general the camera becomes extremely sluggish. The results are mostly blurred images. The autofocus works precisely so far, but it takes significantly longer to focus than the average (up to 4 seconds!). What the pre-installed camera app lacks is a manual recording mode. Although settings for ISO, white balance and exposure can be made within the settings, a quick access, as with most camera apps with manual recording mode, is not possible. In general, the scope of the camera app could be improved.

 Videos can be recorded with a maximum 4K resolution. In the video recording mode, no function could be elicited from the autofocus, which is why it was possible to focus manually using the touch. To what extent Elephone will fix this bug in future updates remains to be seen. The sound recording quality is slightly dull, but understandable.

Front camera

 The front camera is suitable for selfies. Nevertheless, recordings are visibly noisy, especially in poor lighting conditions, and the color rendering tends to be slightly bluish. The placement of the front camera below the display also takes getting used to. Before every selfie, it is recommended to turn the smartphone by 180 °. A gimmick is the 3-stage LED softlight, which is also located below the display. However, this does not glow too strongly, which is why hardly noticeable improvements in the recording quality are to be expected. The front camera also records videos with maximum 4K resolution.



The Elephone S8 supports 2G, 3G and 4G cellular standards. The S3 is compatible with the LTE bands 7, 20 and 8 used in this country. However, the LTE 900 or Band 8 recently expanded by Telekom is not supported. Telephony and mobile surfing are easily possible with this smartphone. The reception strength and quality were consistently good. 

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

The smartphone supports the WiFi protocols 802.11a / b / g / n / ac. The connection range and connection stability as well as the data throughput are convincing, which is why the Elephone S8 is at an upper mid-range level. Bluetooth is supported with version 4.0. In combination with a Bluetooth loudspeaker and a hands-free system, there were no dropouts or other disconnections.

GPS and sensors

The built-in GPS module works very precisely, measured against the MediaTek standard. A GPS fix is ​​found comparatively quickly. When navigating through town and country, there were no major deviations that would have affected navigation. An e-compass is available. Other sensors include a gyroscope, a proximity sensor, an acceleration sensor, and an ambient light sensor.

Fingerprint scanner

A fingerprint scanner is integrated into the home button. The accuracy of the fingerprint scanner is good, but it takes a long time until the device is finally unlocked.


The battery capacity is advertised as 4.000 mAh. The average screen-on-time with medium display brightness is around 6 hours. This is not an outstanding value for a smartphone with a comparatively large battery, but you should consider that a 6-inch 2K display and an energy-hungry Helio X25 are powered, which is why the runtime is quite acceptable.

Elephone S8 battery test

 The smartphone must be charged after 1 ½ days of normal use at the latest. According to Elephone, charging is accelerated by the Pump Express Plus quick charge function. However, the charger included in the scope of delivery is not a quick charger. Instead, two other Pump Express capable quick chargers were used to test the Pump Express Plus function. The PE + charging mode was not correctly triggered with any of the chargers, which is why charging was only carried out with a current of 9 ampere at a voltage of 1V. Usually, PE + in the turbo reaches a power of 15 watts.

The average charging time with the charger supplied is 2 ½ hours. Another point of criticism is that the charging process often stops at 95%. The charging process is only continued after the charging cable has been plugged in again.

Elephone S8 Review / Test

Elephone S8


Great design with narrow bezel
Very good 2K display
Precise touchscreen
Powerful hardware
Clean Android OS
Good cellular behavior
Fast dual-band AC WiFi
Strong signal GPS
Adequate battery life


Crackling back
No notification LED
No 3.5 mm audio jack
Getting used to one-button navigation
Thermal Throttling
Disappointing main camera
No memory expansion
Falsely advertised PE +


The Elephone S8 is a tri-bezel-less smartphone with good approaches, but that disappoints in detail. Particularly positive is the high-resolution 16: 9 display of the S8 in appearance. The color reproduction is good, the presentation high-resolution and in other respects there is nothing to complain about except the rather poor display brightness. The choice of MediaTek Helio X25 as a system-on-chip is two-edged. On the one hand, the Deca-Core processor offers excellent performance, while on the other hand energy efficiency suffers. Here, the weaker but much more efficient MediaTek Helio P25 would probably have been the better choice. Especially since the Helio X25 reduces its performance after only a short time under full load. The memory speeds are not objectionable despite LPDDR3 memory and eMMC5.1 flash memory.

One of the biggest criticisms is the camera equipment, especially the main camera, which produces a lot of noise and mostly blurred image and video recordings. There is nothing wrong with connectivity. Here the Elephone S8 convinces by a good mobile radio behavior, a signal-strong dual-band AC WLAN connection and a precise working GPS module. To criticize is the charging process. Elephone advertises the S8 with the quick-charge function Pump Express Plus, which in fact does not work properly.

Finally: Is the Elephone S8 recommended? If Elephone eliminates the criticisms mentioned here, which are mostly software-fixable, in future updates, the smartphone is definitely worth a recommendation for those who are looking for a tri-bezel-less smartphone with 16: 9 display.

Timo Altmeyer avatar

Timo is the founder of and a real technology expert. From smartphones to e-bikes, from home cinema to smart homes, he always has his finger on the pulse of the latest trends.

Comment on

Leave a Comment

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked with * marked

More from Elephone



Elephone S8


 Processor and memory 
CPU: MediaTek Helio X25
GPU: Mali-T880
Internal memory: 64GB (eMMC5.1)
Memory extension: no

Display diagonal: 6 inches
Display resolution: 2560 x 1440 pixels
Screen Protector: Corning Gorilla Glass 4
Multitouch: 5 fingers

Main Camera: 21 Megapixel Sony IMX220
* Aperture f / 2.0
* Autofocus
* Dual Tone LED Flash
Front camera: 8 megapixel Sony IMX219

Dual SIM: Yes
SIM size: Nano SIM

GSM: B2 / B3 / B5 / B8
WCDMA: B1 / B8
FDD-LTE: B1 / B3 / B7 / B20
TDD-LTE: B38 / B40

WiFi: 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac
Bluetooth: 4.0
GPS: Yes

* Proximity Sensor
* Accelerometer
* Ambient light sensor
* E-Compass
* Fingerprint Sensor

Battery: 4.000 mAh
Fast charging function: PE +
Connection: USB-C

Operating system: Android 7.1.1
Size: 15.2 8.7 x x 0.86 mm
Weight: 195g

What's in the box

1x Elephone S8
1x silicone case
1x charger
1x USB-C Charging Cable
1x USB-C to 3.5 mm jack adapter
1x SIM needle
1x user manual