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Lumia 520 versus Lumia 530 benchmarks show who is king of low-cost Windows Phones

The Nokia Lumia 530 is the newest entry-level Windows Phone device to grace the markets in 2014. As the global rollout begins, we are diving deeper into seeing what the phone can do. Although technically speaking the Lumia 530 is a follow up to the Lumia 520, in some ways it is a step down in specs in an attempt to drive the price even lower. This difference is why many consider the Lumia 630 to be a better upgrade for current Lumia 520 owners.

How does the new Quad-core 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 200 chipset in the Lumia 530 compare to the older, Dual-core 1.0 GHz Snapdragon S4 found in the Lumia 520? Let's find out!


In this test, we used the free and cross-platform supported Basemark II OS software to compare device performance. Neither phone used a micro SD card, as the app was loaded into internal memory.

Both phones are running the latest software including Windows Phone 8.1 (build 12400 for the Lumia 530; build 12393 for the Lumia 520) and Lumia Cyan updates. Both phones were soft-reset prior to their tests.

We ran Basemark II OS multiple times for consistency.


Overall, the marks from the Basemark II OS app reflects intuition that the Lumia 530 outperforms the Lumia 520 in virtually every way. The overall score for the Lumia 530 puts it at 366, while the Lumia 520 sits at a much lower 273.

The largest difference in the sub-tests is found in the System performance, which looks at raw processor power. As expected, a Quad-core 1.2 GHz CPU (Score 566) is much better than a Dual-core 1 GHz one (Score 284), making the results unsurprising. Likewise, for graphics the Lumia 530 scored 178 over the lower 125 found on the Lumia 520, suggesting that for games the Lumia 530 is a better device.

Interestingly memory had the Lumia 520 slightly edging out the Lumia 530, suggesting that not all the system components found in the newer entry-level are necessarily better. However, because the Lumia 530 has a beefier CPU, it can overcome any other bottlenecks found on the chipset.

In real world tests the Lumia 530 owns

Benchmarks are one thing, but how the phone reacts to everyday tasks is another. Although more subjective, the Lumia 530 feels zippier for launching apps, loading graphics and scrolling around the OS, suggesting that the new chipset improves upon the experience in owning one of the cheapest Windows Phone 8.1 devices around.

In terms of loading games, the Lumia 530 crushes the Lumia 520. An example game used was the popular Subway Surfers, which took an astounding 20 to 30 seconds longer on the Lumia 520 to load when compared to the Lumia 530. Apparently, that Snapdragon 200 is doing more heavy lifting on Nokia's latest Windows Phone, significantly improving user experience. Even simple things like bringing up the app-chooser and attaching images to emails were faster on the Lumia 530 by a substantial margin.

In terms of the display, the Lumia 520 has much better contrast with the Lumia 530 looking washed out by comparison. However, whites looked more natural on the Lumia 530. The Lumia 520 also has automatic brightness adjustment and sunlight readability mode (super bright), whereas the Lumia 530 lacks both of these. In exchange, the Lumia 530 gains dual-SIM support, which strategically may be more important for emerging markets.

Unfortunately, the camera test from Basemark II OS could not be compared due to it not being able to complete on the Lumia 530. The Lumia 530 though does omit a physical camera button in addition to losing the autofocus, which is an important difference between it and the Lumia 520. Image quality from sample photos using the Nokia Camera app yielded similar results on both phones, with perhaps a slight edge to the Lumia 530 for color saturation and sharpness.


The newer Snapdragon 200 with a Quad-core 1.2 GHz CPU is a better choice for Windows Phone. Games load drastically faster and navigating apps and doing regular OS tasks is a better experience. Some of this comes at a price though, as the Lumia 530 gives up a brightness sensor, camera button, camera autofocus, but gains dual-SIM support and on-screen keys.

Still, in looking at the Lumia 530 on its own, it is a compelling device for the price-range and demographic it is targeting. The Lumia 530's raw performance combined with the latest Windows Phone 8.1 operating system make it an excellent choice for those on a budget.

For users with a Lumia 520, the natural upgrade path makes the Lumia 630 somewhat more appealing since it has a larger display (4.5-inch versus 4) with ClearBlack for dramatically better color saturation. The Lumia 630 also has an improved Adreno 305 GPU versus the Adreno 203 found in the Snapdragon 200 on the Lumia 530. As a result, gaming and graphics performance should be even better on the Lumia 630.

Next time, we take a closer look at benchmarks between the Lumia 530 and Lumia 630.

QR: basemark

Daniel Rubino
Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

  • So I guess the 530 seems faster?
  • You are correct sir
  • Not fast enough to make it a worthwhile release. We already have a weak ass low end cheap Windows Phone with half a gig of ram and no front facing camera: the Lumia 630. I see the appeal in having a cheap smartphone, but 630 could've just been the replacement for the 520.
  • Lumia 520 accounts for nearly 40% of the Windows Phone market. A Lumia 530 that performs this well with dual-SIM is huge for emerging markets.
  • I definitely understand the appeal of people being able to quickly access a phone that performs well and costs little (FTR, I have and enjoy a 520 myself)... I simply feel that the 530 is redundant with the 630/635/638 essentially doing the same thing, especially with the 630 being available for $79 at Fry's. ...don't you feel that it's money and resources that could've been put to better use?
    ...don't you feel it's just the slightest bit redundant?
  • Seems that way at first, sure. But since the low end market is huge, much bigger than any other and also much more lucrative then the high and midrange. I mean, for every potential 930 buyer there are 100 530/630 buyers. This validates creating multiple devices for and Microsoft isn't being strange at all. They clearly stated that they wanted to kill the Nokia X series and put WP devices at that price point, this is how it's done. Everyone else does it too and if you compare the size of the market, 2 isn't much really. But here is the interesting part. The 630 has an initial retail price lower than the original 520. The 530 gets placed even lower. This is a full out attack not just on smartphones, but also on featurephones and the same market firefoxos and others aim for too. Markets where the 520 was still too expensive. The 530 can drop lower in price than the 520 ever could.
  • I get what your saying, but I have to ask, people that get feature phones do so because they don't want to shell out for data plans. So how cheap could a actual smartphone truly go before it makes no sense? I mean take a free 520 give it to someone who's use to paying 30 a month now add at least 20 to that and see if they don't get upset? So to me a 630 at 79 would make a whole lot more sense than a 520 would.
  • there are plans on T-mobile that are $30 and possibly lower, so its not like evrey carrier charges out the ass for a smartphone service..
  • And there's cheaper straight phone services too. My point still stands.
  • I think i get your point but im not too sure. You're saying that it is dumb to pay so much more for contracts when you save so much more by buying your phone straight out? If so. I half agree. But my problem is.. I dont understand the connection to the 630 Posted via Windows Phone Central App
  • No what I'm saying is that for instance if I was a feature phone customer id be really hesitant on getting a smartphone because of the difference in plan cost. IF I got a smartphone and new I was gonna be paying more anyways id certainly spend 20$ more for a phone that would be better. So a 630 being on 20 ish more would get my money before a 520/530.
  • In the US that's true. But in some countries the plans are not really that different in price. 530 is aimed at those markets.
  • So in those countries a feature phone cots the same still?
  • Oh i understand now. Posted via Windows Phone Central App
  • The cheap phone services no longer care if you're using a smartphone or not. They never should have, it's none of their damn business what device you're using. You just pay for the service you use. In most countries that bullshit was never implemented anyways. Either way, your super cheap dumb phone plan would cost the same with a smartphone nowadays. You might not have data access over cellular but you will over Wi-Fi. They don't force you to buy data any more.
  • This is not the case in all countries of the world.
  • Actually, in developing countries for which the 530/630 are aimed for, the price difference between those two phones matter a lot. As for your concern that their $30 plan could balloon into $50 with the use of a smartphone instead of feature phone is not quite accurate because you can just disable data on the phone. I know this because my friend who bought my 625 is using it like a feature phone and has data turned off in the phone all the time because he doesn't want to go beyond his monthly plan. But he likes the 625 way better than his erstwhile feature phone because he can also use the phone to go online when there is free wi-fi access.
  • I just got a 521 because I dunked my 1520 and I'm surprisingly happy with it. I'd say for $50 it's one of the best phones I've ever had. I'm loving the size, it's not amazingly fast but not slow enough to be a problem. My biggest beefs are the camera, the time it takes to bring up the camera app, the lack of wireless charging and no front camera but it's $50 off contract and it does almost everything my 1520 did just a little slower. In other news I'm also kind of upset that my Mazda isn't a Ferrari. If they had a similar form factor phone with all of those features I'd buy it in a heart beat.
  • I bought a 520 as an interim till I a better phone I liked, a year later and I'm still liking it! I can live with some slowness, it's not that big a deal. the main feature I would upgrade for is LTE, if the 520 had that I wouldn't even be looking.
  • Should of got a 521 then :P
  • I absolutely agree. There's no rhyme or reason to all these Lumia variants except as a misguided attempt saturate the market. The 520 is a great, cheap phone which negates the need for anything other than the 920/1020. I really don't understand why they can't just have the budget phone and then a proper flagship. Everything else is redundant and wastes resources that could have been better utilized making the 530 and 930 proper successors.
  • Because there are people are willing to pay more than $100 for a phone but are unwilling to pay $600 for a phone.   There are too many models, but you need more than 2. Maybe like 4. And no dumb carrier variants.
  • +820
  • 520 is being phased out.
  • In my country Lumia 530 is available at 6700 rupees (110 dollar) and 630 is approx 150+ dollar. So, that's a big difference
  • Not really. Say 630 does settlle arond the $90 price point for a while. 530 could settle aroudn $50 or even lower. There will be buyers in both of those price points.
  • Given most/all of those comparisons don't have dual-SIM, no I don't find it redundant.
  • Agreed. But MS compromised a lot just to make 520 dual Sim.
  • Btw, the L530 uses Adreno 302, not 203.
  • Daniel, the only reason these were selling was the massive microsoft funding. Now that they spent the 7B on Nokia they are rolling back subsidies and their market share is crashing.  It's not like anyone preferred the 520 they just liked that it was free. 
  • Mark, what planet do you live in because here in Planet Earth, everywhere that the 520 was sold, it was sold for a price, in some markets cheaper than in others true, but all were sold at a price. Even those that were sold "free" on certain carrier plans had a price but it was just hidden so you couldn't see it.
  • Tipsy -  I also live on planet earth.  I have a friend who was in sales at Nokia.  He told me that Microsoft was subsidizing all sales massively.  The 520 sold the best because with subsidy it came in at  feature phone pricing (so if not free close to it).   Microsoft backed away from these subsidies last quarter and you can see how their market share took a hit.  They can't afford $B of subsidies after spending $7B for Nokia - plus Satya is not interested in pouring in good money after bad.  I expect that the  phones will soon have to stand on their own and they could go the way of Blackberry.....  
  • The lack of autofocus makes the 630 DOA, as far as I am concerned.
  • The 630 does have auto-focus
  • Indeed. WP runs great on weak specs but I've tried convincing multiple people to get the 520/530. I convinced a few but most got a cheap Android (Galaxy S3 Mini, same price as 520) instead since it had a front facing camera. I feel the 530 should at least have had a front facing camera. And the 630 should have had 1gb RAM around the world. I fear Microsoft is going to lose more marketshare this year because their low-end isnt competitive with today's Android offer.
  • Agreed... no ffc is a big deal. For what it would add to the price, this is one of the things that would be worth it. Everyone loves selfies...
  • Yeah, even for emerging markets, selfies is a trend. Many people likes to be part of the trend.
    Maybe I forigive the 530 not to have FFC, but 630 should have it on the first place. It's hard to convice people to get these devices instead because many entry-level Android phones does have one.
    Most people don't know what Windows Phone is, so their buying decision is usually based on price and specs, apps as I observe isn't much an issue for first-smartphone buyers. So having FFC would help them convice, since many people care about taking photos than what CPU, RAM, GPU, and Pixel-Density it has, they don't even know what exactly it is anyways. I also agree at least some variant of 630 should have 1GB RAM option, make it like 636??? Also another variant of 530 to have FFC, since many Android phones on the same price or lower have one.
    I think Microsoft should have more lower-end models or variants for these emerging market, also convice more OEMs from China and India to make more affordable Windows Phone. Their devices aren't just stay on their country, it also exports alot and usually they are rebranded to other countries. For me this makes Android devices grow on popularity and marketshare on emerging markets.
  • I dint know... For me, every low-end android phone I ever had was a nightmare. But WP runs butter smooth no matter what phone you have. So I would never recommended any budget android phone.
  • 630 IS the replacement for 520, the 730 will be the replacement for 620... with 30s line all the devices took a step down in the starway, now lumia 530 isn't the sucessor of any phone, it has a brand new spot, ultra-low-cost  
  • This is true. I've been saying it for months.
  • "feels zippier" is the new term according to the article, haha
  • I love Lumia 520.
  • 530 only 4gb no way
  • Throw in a micro SD with 128 GB, and who cares? With 8.1 you can put apps, games, music...everything on the card.
  • Not everyone can afford a 128GB SD card.....(specially people who will be buying the most affordableWP8.1 out there)
    I can hardly afford my 4Gb Sd card with 8GB Lumia 620
  • 128 GB was an extreme example and meant to be hyperbolic. Users could buy a 2 GB or 4 GB. The point is, the cost (and choice) is passed on to the user. In exchange, you get a modern dual SIM smartphone that performs significantly better than its predecessor. Microsoft is in this to make money off of their phones, after all. You cannot give everything away for free.
  • Well then,Idk how they are going to attract the Android users out there with these specs when they could buy a better specced(Not sure if that's a word tbh :p ) android phone at an even lower price.
    Note: I'm focusing on specs, not performance which some new customer looking to buy android or WP would probably focus on
  • I have yet to find an android GLOBAL phone that has the same specs performance and price of the 530, let alone lower price. If u r going to bring local OEMs to the argument, there are tons of newly announced local WP's with very low prices in many regions.
  • Motorola e
  • Which costs something like 50% more than what this phone will.
  • And of course the motorola e has only 4GB storage as well.
  • Doogee DG800. Just one of many examples.
  • Indeed its hard to attract some to get these Lumia rather than some "better"-spec Android phones, especially at even lower price. Currently a dead-cheap range smartphone is currently belongs to Android for now. Well that's competition and Microsoft really need to be more aggressive on this. There's actually a chance for some entry-level Android phone users to switch Windows Phone especially if their experience with these devices are bad in terms of performance, ease-of-use, and reliability. I also found Android phones I tested with 4GB of internal storage have only around 2GB of usuable storage, and App Storage are seperate with some only have 500MB-1GB allowed.
  • Dont you think no autofocus = no photography????
  • How so? I have no problem taking photos. It's even easier without AF.
  • I know.. Wish there was manual focus on default camera..
  • the camera fine !! not a easy photo to capture with the light from outside flooding in making most objects in front of the light being a silhouette. nice example of the camera.
  • Doesn't that just make it easier to shoot entries for this weeks photo contest? :)
  • i should enter it. dropping the phone more than a few times also helps with the image. well f**ked the camera !!
  • The phone havee fixed focus ,but is a disaster that phone, my brother have it and in terms of camera and built it's a mess even the 520 has better camera , and not get an fixed focus one , also having 5 low end models don't help because it's not differentiation we will have models with exactly the same processor and not varying at all to give to the buyer a reason to consider a model instead of other
  • I think the camera is just fine for most people buying a budget phone... the only issue would be no macro photohraphy 
  • Auto focus= you never get what you wanted to shoot ;)
  • you can get a 16gb for 11 bucks on amazon
  • 8 Gb Class 10 micro SD costs under 5€
  • Yea, 128gb is kind of extreme, no question, I make OK money but, 128gb cards are crazy money but. If you watch sites list Meritline or newegg for deals, I have seen 16gb class 10 cards go for under $15 and I have seen 32gb ones go for under $25. I picked up a 32gb class 10 the other day for $18. A 32gb card would give you more memory that the high end models that dont have MicroSD support, like the 929/930 etc... Watch sites like fatwallet and slickdeals for these things to come up and they are very common. Even sites like Fatwallet will give cash back if you order linking from them to save even more money. If you can't scrape up $10-15 for a card, then you need to think can you even afford the phone ?
  • Exactly. Unlike android, you can put any app you download on the SD card.
  • But Mr. Rubino, isn't the price of the 128 GB sd card the same or higher than that of the 530? Would you spend the money on that?
  • Read the comment above. The 128 GB card is the extreme example. Clearly you understand you do have the option to buy 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 GB cards and on on and on, no?
  • Right, but personally, I wouldn't use 128 GB on this phone, it wouldn't feel good
  • Like those people who put a $2000 stereo system and $2000 rims on their $1500 junker car?
  • I have a friend like that lol
  • Worked for years in a high end Audio Video store in the Boston area. You would not belleve what I have seen, a crappy rust bucket Chevette with a $3500 system with custom lighting and everything else (pull up screens, massive high end audio and speakers). This was kind of common place in the Boston area but, every once and a while we would get in a very hot car....
  • Then get a 32gb they're $11 on Amazon.
  • 3rd world country brah
  • He meant it as an example of what the phone I capable of... There are still lesser options that cost less than $10.
  • Because right now, on an 8GB phone where I have moved absolutely everything I can possibly move to the SD card under WP 8.1, it shows 4.14GB of internal memory used. How is that footprint supposed to fit on a 4GB device?
  • True, and some apps cannot be installed on a SD card, not a lot of them, but I've come across a couple
  • This phone has ~1 GB of free space by default, so, there you go.
  • Does it have the unique ability to move messaging, email, internet, and other storage to the SD card or will owners of this phone constantly have to mange those areas to keep the phone functional?
  • You have a 1 GB of email and text? C'mon...most people don't sync more than a week of email, especially those using this kind of phone.
  • Well, the phone says 4.14GB used. It had to go somewhere.
  • Just to let you know Mr. Rubino, I'm not here to troll, just to ask, I'm sorry if you thought something else I just want to apologize
  • Outlook here is 3 days, and use 400mb on my 720
  • Dude how?? lol I have outlook and my .edu email syncing the last 2 weeks of email and I think its taking up around 80MB of memory. am I reading my storage sense wrong?? or are the ladies sending you pics and vids ;)
  • Is 'cause I use a lot of email. LOL Everyday....
  • I'm sorry you have to deal with people who can't even think on their own every single day.
  • some popular apps require to install on internal memory like whatsapp.
  • And whatsapp is like 10 mb's? I'm sure 10mb's fit on 4gb of internal memory...
  • So... nobody send voice notes, and talks with you? Nobody send photos and videos? o.O
  • common sense pls. whatsapp was just an example.
  • on my phone whatsapp has acquired around 150mb of isolated storage, only pics and videos gets stored in SD Card, audio will be stored in phone memory
  • Micro SDs cost money and I don't have a lot - they cost more than my phone!!!!
  • Are you kidding me? This 16gb class 10 sd card costs 10 dollars on amazon!! You're telling me you don't want to spend a measly 10 dollars on an sd card? That's pretty pathetic.
    Oh and your phone is less than 10 dollars? Gtfo dude.
  • Not all the 7billion people who live on earth live in the us
  • LOL I DON'T LIVE IN THE US EITHER, but I can still buy stuff from Amazon!! What is your point??
  • My point is your an idiot Case Closed
  • You're*
  • That's very mature of you.
  • +530
  • Here in Brazil the same Micro SD Card that you show is 20 dollars
  • Thanks Dilma.
  • Not all apps are able to install on SD card. And out of that 4GB most will be occupied by the OS.
  • For the prize you can't expect more, perfect in that matter
  • What lagdroid you are comparing with?
  • windows phone has lag as well. even im using lumia 1520 i experiencing lag when returning to homescreen.
  • Yeah it does but when you've android for a while, you'll know how bad lagdroid is. The lag on wp is nothing compared to it.
  • I dont see what android has to do with his post. Posted via Windows Phone Central App
  • But... The knowitalls here said the 530 was a downgrade on ever aspect from the 520... Yet it crushes the 520..? How can it be??? *irony*
  • Lumia 520 still have a better look
  • Agreed.
  • Compared it to the 530, the 520 still has its own in a lot of areas. Would we say that when the 540 comes out? That's important.
  • Never Sir...There is no Nokia phone with the number 4 in it... dunno if its a superstition or something... 
  • There was in the past, 5140.
  • King of low cost phones?... What about compared to the MotoG.❓
  • "King of low cost phones?... What about compared to the MotoG"
    That is not the title of this article. I specifically said low cost WINDOWS Phones.
  • Im so sorry for you that people post ridiculous stuff and complain so much. It's an article and I thank you for all that you post. Im sure it irks you just as much as it does me when people get upset when something isn't what they expect. Lol sorry for the rant. Go Daniel!
  • :) It is irritating, but part of the job, lol
  • And if you don't like the 530, buy the 630/635. It's only 30-50 dollars more. Bam! Lol
  • Sorry.. Don't know how I missed that.. Lol❗❗
  • Not ridiculous.. I just missed that part because I was scanning to fast... Are you perfect❓❓❓❓
  • I think im perfect :) Posted via Windows Phone Central App
  • Not to pre-empt your next comparison Daniel, but the results I get on my Lumia 630 show a small improvement in System, Graphics and Web over these 530 results, but a massive improvement in Memory - around the 750 mark. I'm guessing the Lumia 530 has a single bank of 4GB of flash, whereas the Lumia 630 has dual 4GB banks, with dual channel interface between the flash and the CPU. It'll be interesting to see if you found the same thing.
  • At almost 3x the street price?
  • The Moto G does not have a micro SD slot.
  • Here in the UK you can get 2 530's for the price of 1 Moto G.
  • Moto G, really? Moto E is the competition here.
  • What about compared with the doublepricedattheexit Moto G? ...oh yeah, this's fair...
    ...what about Moto E? THESE are the low cost phones (btw Moto E is more expensive than 530...)
  • Nope. In India, flipkart is exclusively selling Moto E anand it costs less than Lumia 530 (6999 bucks to 7200 bucks) The difference is around 200 INR..
  • Dude it shud be Moto e.. Or xiaomi red1 vs 530
  • Ok. Ok❗❗❗ 30 people above already said the same thing.. Chill❗ :-):-):-):-):-):-):-)
  • As long as everything can be put on the card, 4gb won't matter. Not bad for an entry level phone.
  • 4GB is what kills the 530. I don't know how they direct to deliver OS updates to that phone.
  • OS updates on 8.1.1 can be installed/saved on the micro SD card.
  • *spits coffee* really?
  • Yup. They did for...wait for it...phones like the Lumia 530 ;)
  •  Nice!
    I still prefer min. 1 GB RAM & 8 GB Flash + SD slot
    820, 1320, 730, 830 & all the other new OEM than MS Mobile Lumia!!
    but then it naturally costs more $$$...
  • But what happens when you remove the SD?
  • You cannot use the app installed there...but nothing implode...
  • and why would you do that?
  • not all.
  • The worst thing is the lack of flash led :/
  • The 520 doesn't have it either and sold well
  • It doesn't prevent it to be an bad thing.
  • True, but this is an entry level phone, it should have a led flash, but it would make the phone more expensive, the whole idea of this phone I think is decent performance at a low price, you really can't expect it to have everything for the price it has, after all, Microsoft is trying to get some money out of this phone
  • "Night Mode" is what you're looking for in the camera.
  • Considering the Lumia 520 does not have that either, it is besides the point in comparing the two. I'd say the lack of ClearBlack is a much bigger deal, as that makes a dramatic improvement for something you use 100% of the time on a phone.
  • I wish they kept at least the screen quality the same. Is the 530 the first Lumia to not have clearblack?
  • I think that the Lumia 630/635 (636/638) doesn't have a True ClearBlack
    with Polarization + rotation -> reflecting -> going back through the rotation then TOTAL polarization
    I think it's missing the rotation layer
  • No the 5xx series has never had ClearBlack I believe that is a feature the 6xx series and UP receive.
  • You're right. Don't know how I missed that. I'm kind of disappointed about some things Nokia/Microsoft have been doing lately. Maybe they forgot to put it on the specs sheet, but there is no mention of super sensitive touch for the 530 or even the 635. No dedicated camera button for either, no glance screen. The features that I really liked about and made Lumias unique seem to be going away.
  • Lumia 505 has AMOLED display with ClearBlack.
  • Why I don't have the brightness features on my Lumia 920 ?
  • I'm going to guess older chipset and no APIs are the answer here.
  • Means brightness profile will not be there for 720 as well
  • I think that is just a bullshit. Even Symbian from 2007's have the slider! (Yes, I'm talking about my old Nokia 5800)
  • I think that comes with cyan, or at least that's the idea I had, I don't have brightness profile either on my 820 but I still don't have cyan installed. I'm on dp. Would be nice to get it but the auto brightness works perfectly for me so I wouldn't really use it.
  • I don't believe in basemark OS II .
    It gives different results everytime.
    At once it gave overall score to my Lumia 620 - 294 then 209 then 194 then 336 all at same builds that's Lumia cyan no DP
  • (1) We ran it multiple times, had consistent results, which we used (2) Suggest something better for non-subjective testing of performance?
  • Can't suggest It's still the best benchmark app in windows phone store.
  • Former 520, now 1320. Best choice.
  • Lumia 530 is better than 520...those who never used windows phone and want to try this platform,530 is up to the mark.
  • disagree.
  • As long as they don't forget how much they paid for that phone and therefore do not compare it with high end phones, eg iPhone or s5. I hate those bastards.
  • If they get the wp8.1 GDR 1, then htc 8S should get it to, for sure
  • the article is advertisement... because adreno 305 is much faster than 203 . how much MS paid for this ? :)
  • I think he said that the Adreno 305 in the 630 was much faster than the 203 in the 530. 
  • yes,but l520 has also adreno 305 fake test imho :)
  • Stupid comment, imho. Luckily, I listed my exact test conditions and tests performed so others could replicate them, eh? It is almost like I'm daring people to try and repeat them, which would be odd to do for a fake test. Also, since your are asserting some performance differences, I am looking for your test results. Where may I find them please? But hey, people say nonsense on the internet all the time with no evidence, so welcome.
  • no comment :)  
  • This just in, perhaps performance doesnt solely rely on the GFX chip, but also the main CPU...
  • "no comment :)"
    Good, you sound smarter that way;) I am not sure how GPU speed compared to GPU speed has much to do with the results presented here, or how Subway Surfers loaded way faster, multiple times, on the Lumia 530. But hey, if you feel like you proved something today, then a big pat on your back! GO GET 'EM TIGER! lol The (un)shocking result though still stands: a quad-core 1.2 GHz chipset is faster than a dual-core 1 GHz one. I am not sure why that would be surprising, or how you could think the opposite could be true.
  • I think the test in the article is good. A test can always be more precise or mode in depth (eg. Most reviews), but for this kind of article is perfectly fine. Regarding the "4 cores always better than 2, at similar Mhz", it depends on the design of the cores. I mean, a single modern Intel core crushes 8 cores mobile SoC (obviously), but even in mobile we have many different levels of cores. The SoC in the iPhone 5s is dual core, but in many tests surpasses the Snapdragon 800.
  • Sorry, but you are an idiot. What do these charts have anything to do with the Lumia 530? The SoC in that phone has an Adreno 302 GPU which AFAIK is just a lower clocked version of the Adreno 305 (the one that is in Lumia 520, 6xx series, 7xx series, 1320). Basically all the performance differences between Adreno 302 vs Adreno 305 (and even between devices that have the same 305 GPU) come from different clock speeds and different RAM configurations (more bandwidth enables extracting more of the theoretical performance of a graphics processor).
  • I've only been following the site for a couple years, and don't often comment. I just want to say you have the patience of a saint. Keep up the good work.
  • Hah, thanks. It's certainly a challenge.
  • Are you a moron? Go check other websites for the specs of these phones w.r.t they all like to fake test and get paid eh?
  • I would upgrade to 730 or 830 from my 520. I hope that 730 will cost under 250 USD. and 830 no more than 350USD 
  • I hope the 830 is free, and MS pays me to take the 730 home! Nah, but seriously, the 830 is likely to cost a bit more than that.
  • You may consider Lumia 1320...?
  • Nah. Too Big for me. I want something below 5 inches. I'm waiting what new Lumia generation brings
  • Do not want to burst your bubble but the rumored specs of the 830 certainly have it pointing to a much higher price range. I'd say around 450$ the 730 however might be your best bet. It was already shown in brazil (the real phone to get certified) and the official specs show a 6.7MP camera. if photography is your thing I would save up more money and get the 830, which may ship with either a 13MP cam or a 20MP cam both PureView :)
  • I read somewhere that Lumia 830 is supposed to be "affordable high end" I'll have to wait til carrier brings something up. In Europe it's difficult
  • In Europe its difficult?? what lol man here in the US we are jealous of the European system when it comes to phones. You guys don't need to deal with carrier exclusive crap. and yeah I read it was supposed to be affordable and high end as well, but you know how far they can stretch "affordable" lol i'm on Tmobile here so I pay for this JUMP feature so im getting in line for that 830 no matter what. ill finance it :D
  • Just wish that either of them would have been waterproof. Then I would've bought one and used it while running and working out.
  • Fight between a phone launched last year & this year... Doesn't mean anything... Do this between 630 & 530 ...
  • It does mean something. How is comparing how technology has (or has not) improved meaningless? Especially if you own a Lumia 520. ...and read the end of the article...
  • I was so bored with the article at the half, didn't even reached the end... & I was talking about compairing dual core s4 with quad core 200.... Because everybody will know who the winner is.... So why compare these... Instead of 630 & 530 when both have quad core at different prices??
  • Shut up, stop complaining and drag yourself to blabdroid cuz u seem like you'd fit in quite well there.
  • You shut up..,, I wasn't complaining a bit about phones.. I was suggesting about article.... So don't tell me where I fit in.... Just putting wp in your username doesn't make you in wp loyalist...
  • Waiting for 627
  • What's the price difference between these two phones in the US? I paid $39.99 for my 520. Its kinda hard to beat. Posted via the Windows Phone Central App for Android
  • Not available yet in the US. The 630 was just $79 at Fry's though, so...
  • Still is, but just through today. 
  • Drastically faster? Dramatically, surely?!
  • Although the loading times on my 520 sometimes get annoying, especially in some games, it good enough for what I do. I think that the camera losing the automatic focus is a big deal breaker, both not having flash is already bad enough, losing that is saying goodbye to good photos
  • Wow, but I prefer the design of the 520 to that of the 530
  • Does the 530 still have double tap to wake?
  • Nope! Also no 'super sensitive touch'.
  • Double tap missing? Now that's a huge drawback for me. When I get ANY phone in my hand, first I want to wake it by doubletap because I used to wake my L520 by that and I'm waiting for the screen to power on ><. And then I realize that it's not gonna work on any phone... :D
  • Yeah, it's interesting. Lumia 630 does not have it either. I'll have to do a feature comparison.
  • Lumia 520 doesn't have it either, can someone tell me since 930 removed glance, does it support double tap?
  • 520 has double tap to wake up
  • Please stop saying "quad-core Snapdragon 200 at 1.2 GHz" in opposition to "dual-core Snapdragon S4 at 1.0 GHz." The 530's CPU has more raw power, but not as much as the numbers would lead one to expect. The 520's Krait cores are individually much more powerful than the 530's A7 cores. In situations that can't make use of four cores, the 520 is almost certainly faster.
  • No, I won't stop staying it.
    "In situations that can't make use of four cores, the 520 is almost certainly faster."
    This is horseshit, sorry. Name the situation, I'll test it.
  • I have never heard horseshit word. I just knew, bullshit. thanks for adding new words to my vocabulary! :)
  • lol, it's kind of a midwest/Texas word. I never thought about its usage/etymology, but kind of interesting now that you brought it up.
  • or cowshit.
  • :-) In hungarian we say exactly the same(horseshit)..many times I just wanted to say it in english but had to "correct" myself and replace with "bullshit". Now I know both applies. :-)
  • funny when you give it back to them Daniel...:D
    @pantsaregood: he described how games and apps launch differ in both phones and how the OS seems zippier...all of that is significant...doesn't matter if your Krait cores are better real life scenario, 530's performance wins by a mile and that's all the buyer needs to know...
  • Yup, Daniel is correct here, people are just parroting Krait, Krait... They should know that all Krait cores are are not created equal, there is a significant difference between the Krait cores + Adreno 225 in Lumia 1020, 920 etc and the Krait core+ Adreno 305 of Lumia 520.
  • The issue I have is that you're attributing the Lumia 530 being faster to factors that do not inherently imply improved speed. I can say with certainty that a 3 GHz dual-core Sandy Bridge CPU is slower than a 3.3 GHz dual-core Sandy Bridge CPU, but if I compare a 4 GHz quad-core NetBurst CPU to a 3.3 GHz Sand Bridge CPU, the faster processor isn't obvious. Being called "Snapdragon 200" or "Snapdragon 600" doesn't inherently make an SoC faster than a "Snapdragon S4," either. There are Snapdragon S4s that were rebranded as Snapdragon 600.  
  • There's a lot of smoke here, but no fire. I provided benchmarks and cited a specific game with loading times as evidence, all of which can be replicated by anyone with both phones. So far I see a lot of rhetoric but nothing substantive. So either provide specifics or let it go.
  • It isn't rhetoric. It's the nature of CPUs: higher clockspeeds and more cores don't imply more performance unless they're from the same architecture. Here's a case of a 4.7 GHz CPU with 8 cores being thrashed by a 3.5 GHz CPU with 4 cores: Here's a 1.9 GHz CPU with one core trading blows with a 2.0 GHz CPU with 4 cores: Krait benchmarked against Scorpion and a few other CPUs:,3291-4.html Clock speed and core count are not solely indicative of performance. You can certainly look at a dual-core Krait at 1.5 GHz and conclude it is slower than a quad-core Krait at 2.2 GHz, but comparing a dual-core Krait at 1.5 GHz to a quad-core A7 at 1.2 GHz isn't obvious because the architectures are different. Also, note that some of the cores in that benchmark are A9s. Cortex A9s are faster than A7s:
  • Stop posting needless comments @pantsaregood
  • I start to like this phone more. Maybe it will be my next windows phone. With a 32 or 64 GB SD card I have enough memory
  • I expected to watch a side-by-side video comparision...
  • I kind of did that with the unboxing video a few days ago, do a search and you should be able to find it.
  • Ive watched the video. I mean if you are saying Nokia 530 performs better then I want to see how faster it works in reality. Opening apps and so on.
  • The 520 has a newer processor
  • I don't see why the 530 exists with the 525 and 630 out and about.
  • 525 is/will get phased out, and AFAIK not availabe in all markets. 630 is significantly more expensive thant 530 (and both are significantly cheaper, respectively, than 620 and 520 were. 530 makes perfect sense to me (other than perhaps its numbering - it might have been better to name 630 the 530 and the 530 the 430, even if the 4 is considered bad luck in some cultures).
  • I think Lumia 535 will be the next Lumia 525.
  • Yeah, I'm curious if they will do that. The release though for the 525 was limited, I wonder if it even sold well?
  • According to Nokia India website It was best seller.  
  • But there is no zoom option at the time we capture a pic... It's a drawback ..
  • Daniel the 530 has an Adreno 302 GPU not 203(refer to the last paragraph)!!
  • My 520 goes extremely dim instead of extremely bright in sunlight and I have to manually change the brightness
  • I'm surprised by the results and thought the 520 would edge the 530 in everything but CPU heavy tests. Nice to know.
  • All these people talking about only 4gb of storage and others saying just get a microsd. My thoughts is they probably could have just put an 8gb in the phone for 50 cents more. Then the consumer has the option to later get an SD card when they can. Lets face it 50 cents cost could be eaten by any OEM to make a product more appealing to customers. Plus there would be a whole lot less complaint about said devices.
  • I used to work for a consumer electronics company in product design.  I one wanted to add a penny to the cost of the product and the boss said "We plan on selling 10 million of these, so 10 million times 1 cent.  Do you want me to take that out of your check?".  Needless to say, I quit asking for the additional part.
  • Even so. The companies should pony it up so they can guarantee themselves sales. Sales are what keeps them going anyways.
  • Are you so sure the 4GB reduces sales so much or that 8GB would make a material difference up in the sales numbers. I am not. Second, 4GB in 530 and 8GB in 630 is another nice product line differentiator. Perhaps folks who really want/need 8GB internal will buy the 630 instead, and presto, MS gets much more added reveneue than the 50 cents. Third, I am not sure the price difference between 4 and 8 GB is only 50cents. :)
  • While you could be right, I'm not sure the actual cost of extra memory. I just know that memory is extremely cheap now and in my opinion 8gb should be the bare minimum anymore. Its not a new tech and we all know as tech ages it gets cheaper. That's my biggest complaint.
  • It's cheap, but I am sure its not 50 cents cheap.
  • Still no Front facing camera which is what most people want on phones.
  • No me...........this selfie craze os just retarded.....most idiots just hold their phone in front of a mirror! WTF
  • Front facing cameras are useful for video calls too. And holding the phones in front of the mirror doesn't require the front facing camera. Also, in some instances, clicking a picture with the front camera is much more convenient than the rear cam. Just saying. :)
  • Most people, really?
  • @Daniel I can't seem to find any information about the brightness slider for phones that came out on the market before the official release of WP 8.1. Does that mean, that my Lumia 820 can't get that feature, because it didn't "pop up" after I installed  Cyan.
    Sorry, if it is a stupid comment/question. ;)
  • Not stupid, as it is confusing. It appears that only newer phones (read Snapdragon 200, 400, 600 and 80x chipsets) get that feature.
  • It may be faster but they butchered the 520's semi premium design. Now the 530 just looks like tacky compared to the phones with physical touch buttons, and the screen is now nasty. It looks too much like a 630, too.
  • damn, my Lumia 520 is weak as hell, except for graphics.. I mean, it scored 187 overall with 279 in Memory, almost half as yours performed.
    Is there anything to make it quicker? Even by a bit?
  • Lumia Cyan really helped in performance, imo. Felt like a new phone.
  • My phone already has Lumia Cyan. Wait, I realized the app was on SD card.After moving to internal storage, I scored 312 overall. And memory just doubled. Guess that was what made the difference. Thanks anyway :)
  • What do u think threshold windows phone is going to be like ?
  • I am not so sure threshold will affect performance much, esp for these low end devices, but I would be happy if it does! Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe it will be more tailored to feature integration, like an expansion of the universal app idea, better unified Windows Store, better/expanded settings and related theme syncing between big Windows and WP, and a whole bunch of stuff for Devs to make this even better in the long run.
  • I'm surprised how nippy my 630 is? Well done Nokia.
  • Thanks for the comparison. I will be getting the upgrade just for the Dual Sim support, people like to "try out" WP, before going the full 100 with a high spec device. Going cheap and providing choices is the best way to go.
  • Can you recommend a great place to pick up a 530?
  • I love my lumia 520. It's my first smartphone!
  • Good for you
  • Now, its time to release Lumia 330 with same specs, keyboard and smaller screen, it would fit touch haters.
  • Seems like a good idea, make it full querty keyboard and keep physical control buttons as well and dont leave out GPS, then price it 60 euros at launch. I will buy it as 2nd phone. Then again, physical menu buttons and no touch means it would be Asha and not Lumia. I have no idea what are sales figures for Asha 210, but I almost bought it, if not for lack of GPS which is essential to me, even though it costs slightly above 40 euros now and looks really good, it was really tempting to pull the triger on it as 2nd phone until I get my hands on Lumia :)!   *Sigh*   PS. Oops, forgot that Im reading and commenting on slightly old article and comments :D!
  • Lumia 530 surely would have defeated King of low cost "Lumia 520" in terms of software tests. But I am sure it can never defeat Lumia 520 in terms of sales. And that really matters.
  • 520, last word lol
  •   Now Microsoft just needs to make sure that either the 530 or the 635 is available on all carriers, pre and post-pay.
  • WhyI dont have the brightness profile after the Cyan update?
    Lumia 820 India
  • I also thought every Lumia would get this with Cyan. BUT I am just learning now that it is due to hardware actually. so phones with the new SoC's (snapdragon 200, 400, 800) are the ones receiving this extra perk :(
  • Before anyone would consider buying any of these cheap/inexpensive phones consider how long you want to use it and why you need these phones. If you are a power user, i.e. you use the device more than making phone calls, keep away from them; I've a 520 that I got to replace a broken 920 and 99% of the time I see either Loading, Refreshing, or a blank screen. And if you force the phone to switch between applications without allowing it to rest- it will automatically reboot. Once the phone reboots it runs okay for about an hour and the cycle repeats.
  • L530 may outperform L520 but I have to agree with Daniel Rubino. A true upgrade for L520 users would be L630. For me I would upgrade to L730 from my awesome L520.
  • 520 is best than 530... Damn sure
  • regardless of the results, I think they are two big pluses for 530: dual-sim and lower price. That is enough to beat 520 in terms of sales. i only wish that they had retained the 8GB internal memory at the same price point.
  • out of topic question? why lumia 520 not have brightness profile settings?
  • Because brightness profile is for phones without proximity or the automatic brightness absence phones only
  • It's obviously 520
  • Well 530 looks fast but not yet the perfect replacement for my 520
  • I want a comparison between 525 and 530! Please do that!
  • I'm tempted. Sure, I absolutely love my 520, but....
  • Lumia 530 will face heavy competition from Redmi 1s, zenphone 4 and Moto e, I doubt it will be a success
  • So the oft quoted idea that Windows Phone "doesn't need" higher end hardware is debunked.  The OS runs better on better hardware and it's really shamefull that they are still putting out phones in the US that are either entry level with 512 MB or High End at 1 GB (or 2 GB on the newest).  
  • lol. the point is that WP runs remarably well even on the 520.
  • You Say 'Tomato', I say 'Tomato'
  • Daniel, I hope you get paid very well for these insults from people who dont even read the whole thing. Very common place when a review or discussion comes up about lower end phones. 4GB problem can be resolved by a $5-10  8-16gb card, if you want to spend $20, you could get around a 32gb. With a 32gb card, you beat out the memory on most high end WP8 phones.. I did blogging back in the Windows Media Center days, not sure I could deal with too many of the insulting posts so I dropped it, it was too much hassle to do as a hobby (AKA not making any money on it). Keep up the good work, thanks for everything you do here -Dave
  • I would have bought the 520, but I hated how cheap it felt, and how crappy the screen looked. Also the camera did not have a flash, or a front camera. So I went and bought a Lumia 810 instead, and I am much happier.
  • Ive breafly handled 520, will have more uptime with it in coming days, but it didnt feel cheap at all. Sure, ist not aluminum edged 9xx, but neither did I expect to be one, nor its intended to be. Feels good for a budget phone.
  • Im telling every1... Dont buy 530! Its 4GB internal memory is a big thing... I could not install too many apps.. Even in my sd card... It says no memory even if i have memory in sd card when my internal is full! And when internal memory is full, windows phone starts to lagg... 520 and 525 is the best!
  • I think that the xolo windows phone device is a much better buy. HD screen, snapdragon processor, expandable memory, 8 MP camera, with 1gb ram, all for around $175 (₹9999), it just makes more sense, as all you don't get is the Nokia suite of apps. Here maps are available on the store, and many photography apps are available to make up for the Nokia suite.
  • The image of the two phones side by side used in this article really highlights how much nicer looking a device the 520 is than the 530. Sadly, this appears to be the prevailing trend with the change in ownership from Nokia to Microsoft.
  • Would be nice if you guys could compare these devices using actual apps rather than this rediculous benchmarking tool. You might be surprised...
  • Well i got on the graphics side on my 520 a 294 as a score...
  • Things take 30 seconds to load on the 520? Crikey.
  • Look at the phone. Largest market in America is 15-18 year old girls. Nuff said.
  • Then why denim for 530?