Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P comparison: Battle of the new Nexus handsets

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P 1
© NextPit

This summer has seen flagship releases from all the major Android players, but until now, there was one notable exception: the Nexus. Not one, but two new Nexus phones launched on September 29: the LG-built Nexus 5X and the Nexus 6P, which is made by Huawei. How will they slot into an already crowded marketplace, and which one will be the better buy? We've now had the chance to do hands-on reviews of both phones, so read on for our early Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P comparison.

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Nexus 6p preis
The prices of the different versions of the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Design and finishing

At first glance, the Nexus 5X and 6P are not drastically different from their predecessors, but the difference in price between the two new phones is reflected in their design and detail.

The Nexus 6P has an all-metal body with a Gorilla Glass 4 screen, stereo front-facing speakers and a fingerprint sensor on the back. The horizontal 'visor' housing the camera on the back of the phone is likely to split opinions, but its design is otherwise sleek and sophisticated.

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P 3
The all-metal Nexus 6P (right) is a more premium-feeling device than the smaller, plastic-bodied Nexus 5X. / © ANDROIDPIT

The cheaper 5X model cuts some costs by using a smooth plastic body, much like the one seen in the first Nexus 5 in 2013, although it is a taller and thinner phone. It has a fingerprint scanner like the 6P, but settles for a single speaker and Gorilla Glass 3. The Nexus 5X's camera protrudes from the back of the device slightly, but it doesn't look unsightly.

The Nexus 5X arrives in three color options, the Nexus 6P in four, although the gold 6P is only available in Japan at the moment. The 6P is certainly the the more 'premium' phone, but as we've said, that's reflected in its price. The other main difference between the handsets is obviously their size: the 5X measures 147 x 72.6 x 7.9 mm (and weighs 136 g); the 6P, 159.3 x 77.8 x 7.3 mm (178 g).

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The new phones are not a big departure from their predecessors in terms of design. / © Phone Arena

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Display

A larger phone usually means a larger screen and that's the case here. The Nexus 5X display has a 5.2-inch diagonal, while the Nexus 6P is more of a phablet and has a 5.7-inch screen, the same size as the Samsung Galaxy Note 5.

There is also a marked difference in the resolution: the Nexus 5X has Full HD display (1,080 x 1,920 pixels) at 424 ppi; the Nexus 6P offers QHD display (1,440 x 2,560 pixels) at 515 ppi. The 6P display is vibrant and sharp; the 5X is also more than capable, with good brightness and excellent viewing angles. Which you prefer will come down to what you like to use your phone for – if you want to get into VR, you'll appreciate the greater resolution and bigger display of the Nexus 6P, for everything else the 5X should be adequate.

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The Nexus 5X (left) has a 5.2-inch Full HD display, the Nexus 6P has QHD at 5.7 inches. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Software

Although the Nexus 5X and 6P have been made by LG and Huawei, respectively, neither manufacturer has developed its own software. The two new devices will be among the first phones on the market to run Android version 6.0 Marshmallow. A run-down of the key features of Android Marshmallow can be found at the link.

Both phones should come with excellent update support, including security updates for at least 24 months, so they're neck-and-neck on the software front.

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Both the Nexus 5X and the Nexus 6P will come with Android Marshmallow. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Camera

Both devices house 12.3 MP main cameras, which are said to be even more impressive in low-light conditions than the iPhone 6s Plus, thanks to their use of 'large pixels'. They both also have a dual-LED flash, laser auto-focus and a f/2.0 aperture lens. The difference is in the front-facing camera; the Nexus 6P has an 8 MP sensor, the Nexus 5X's is 5 MP.

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The Nexus 5X and 6P are evenly matched on the camera front: both have a 12.3 MP rear shooter. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Performance

Both the Nexus 5X and 6P have high-end processors. The Nexus 5X houses the six-core Snapdragon 808, like the LG G4, with 2 GB of RAM, while the 6P has an eight-core Snapdragon 810, like the Xperia Z5, and 3 GB of RAM. 

The Nexus 6P appears to be the most powerful device on paper – stronger processor, extra 1 GB of RAM, larger memory options – but there didn't seem to be a noticeable difference between it and the 5X during our short test period. We'll update this article when we've had the chance to test the performance of both devices more fully. 

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Both devices should offer a solid performance, despite the Nexus 6P (right) being better specced on paper. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Battery

Battery life has never been a strong point for the Nexus range. The 2013 model in particular was criticized for its consistent failure to make it through the day. There is hope that these new models will fare better in this regard.

The Nexus 5X has a 2,700 mAh battery capacity, an improvement on the Nexus 5's 2,300 mAh offering. The Nexus 6P also has a larger battery than its predecessor – 3,450 mAh.

Though the 6P battery is larger than the 5X's, so is its display and resolution – the battery size doesn't necessarily mean it will have the longest battery life of the two. We'll report back with some real-world figures once we've fully tested each device. 

Android Marshmallow has had several optimizations that should improve battery life, including the new Doze feature and support for USB Type-C, which provides faster charging.

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P 2
LG gave the Nexus 5X a 2,700 mAh battery, while Huawei squeezed a 3,450 number into the 6P. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Specifications

  NEXUS 5X Nexus 6P
Manufacturer LG Huawei
Operating system Android 6.0 Android 6.0
Display 5.2-inch LCD, Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels, 424 ppi) 5.7-inch, QHD, (2,560 x 1,440 pixels, 515 ppi)
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 808, hexa-core, 1.8 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 V2.1, 2.0 GHz, octa-core
Internal memory 16 / 32 GB 32 / 64 / 128 GB
Camera 12.3 MP (back), 5 MP (front) 12.3 MP (back), 8 MP (front) 
Battery 2,700 mAh 3,450 mAh
Connectivity LTE cat.6, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/c/d 2x2 MIMO, dual-band (2.4 GHz, 5.0 GHz), Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, GPS LTE cat.6, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/c/d 2x2 MIMO, dual-band (2.4 GHz, 5.0 GHz), Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, GPS
Dimensions 147 x 72.6 x 7.9 mm 159.3 x 77.8 x 7.3
Weight 136 g 178 g
Price US$379 (16 GB version), S$429 (32 GB version) US$499 (32 GB version), US$549 (64 GB version) US$649 (128 GB version) (TBC) 
Release Date October 2015 (pre-orders open now)

September 2015 (pre-orders open now)

Nexus 5X vs Nexus 6P: Early verdict

If you're torn between the two new Nexus devices, the first question is whether screen size is important to you. If you want a bigger screen, the 6P is the only sensible choice.

The second question is financial: The Nexus 6P is a better phone but the 5X is significantly cheaper, and looks like a great choice for those don't want or need a big screen, or don't mind slightly inferior specs.

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The key decisions between the Nexus 5X and 6P will be on size and price. / © ANDROIDPIT

We will revisit this article once our full reviews for both devices have been published. For now, which of these two devices looks best to you? Will you be buying either? Let us know in the comments.

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  • Amelia Adam Oct 24, 2015 Link to comment

    Nexus Phones are now on sale only at

  • Chris Oct 19, 2015 Link to comment

    "but settles for a single speaker" -- doesn't the 5x have dual front speakers just like the 6P?

  • Elizabeth Rose Oct 14, 2015 Link to comment

    Nexus Phones are now on sale only at

  • Mokken Haho Oct 11, 2015 Link to comment

    The Nexus 5x is a great phone apart from the 2GB RAM instead of 3GB. However, this does not mean that the Nexus 5x lags, as proved by benchmark scores. The Nexus 6P offers better specs at a larger price, bigger screen, QHD display, larger battery and better front-facing camera. However, since the Nexus 5x has a .5 inch smaller screen and 1080p display with a lower ppi, it is arguable that, even with an inferior battery capacity, this phone will actually deliver a decent battery life. It is quite obvious that QHD displays eat up battery. This is experienced in LG's G3 and G4. The back cameras will undoubtedly be similar but the same cannot be said for the selfie camera. The fingerprint scanner on both devices will surely have the same accuracy and response times. For some Android users out there the 5.7 inch display of the Nexus 6P will be a small issue but it all depends on you. So take screen size, battery life and financial planning into account before you decide between the two latest legendary Nexus phones.

  • Philip Peake Oct 7, 2015 Link to comment

    The lack of wireless charging is a killer for me. I have become just so used to it.
    I suppose if battery life is MUCH better than my N5 it won't be so important, but I somehow doubt that is the case.

    My *guess* is that the rear mounted fingerprint scanner got in the way too much, and of course the projections on the back of both would interfere with getting a good coupling for wireless charging.

  • Sean Dent Oct 2, 2015 Link to comment

    The 5 is not "significantly cheaper". It's $70 cheaper for "significantly" less power.

  • Randy Dennis Oct 2, 2015 Link to comment

    Is there really a point to the nexus 5x with the Moto x Pure? Outside of screen size, I really don't see a benefit for the Nexus at only 20 dollars less.. The 6p sure is nice though. Unfortunately I don't have the money laying around to throw at a 6p so I guess I'll just be staying with my n6...

  • o_o S7E7V7E7N Oct 1, 2015 Link to comment

    Nexus 6x? That might be an error.

  • Chris Jones Sep 29, 2015 Link to comment

    Tough call, but I've ended up ordering the 6P after quite a bit of hand-wringing. The 6P is slightly larger than I'd like to carry around in my pocket, though that bigger screen will surely be nice while using it. I'm replacing a Nexus 5, which has been a great device other than battery life. I really wish I had some data on how long each of these last, and I'd probably have been more heavily influenced by that than anything else. Does the larger battery give an absolute longer life, or is that more than offset by the higher resolution screen and the faster CPU (i.e., thirstier)? We'll see, I guess. In the end, the specs swayed me -- the faster device and the 3GB of RAM vs 2GB. Also, I don't care for the idea of only having 16GB of RAM, because although I don't load it up with media, apps along with their downloaded extra content and data backup (Titanium) tend to eat up a lot of space and need headroom. The 32GB version of the 5X is only like $70 less than the 32GB 6P, which when you're already at $430, that's not such a massive difference. Pricing didn't end up being enough of a factor -- specs did. I can, however see how slightly different (and perfectly valid) priorities will lead someone to prefer the 5X, which is also a fine device and a great value. Part of me wanted that because of how well the old Nexus 5 has treated me -- and believe me, this is a really great device. In all the ROM flashing I've done, the thing has been pretty much un-brickable!!!

    • xgudwilx Oct 1, 2015 Link to comment

      No concerns about it being a Huawei? I want the phone but love the LG N4 & N5...I'm hesitant to pull the trigger! Then I keep going back n forth between the N5x and the MotoX Pure. Oh and last year's N6 is tempting when it keeps popping up at $299 & 349.
      I will say I hear Huawei scores high in the radio/antenna department & that's probably better for the N6P on T-Mobile.

  • anicolas88 Sep 28, 2015 Link to comment

    I prefer the N5X, the only big problem? For a Nexus 2gb is too little, at least it should have 3gb

  • athanos lee Sep 28, 2015 Link to comment

    I intend to buy the 5x as a backup for my current nexus 6, partly because all the fond memories nexus 5 have brought me.

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