Nexus 5X vs Samsung Galaxy S6 comparison

Nexus 5X vs Samsung Galaxy S6 comparison

The Samsung Galaxy S6 has established itself as one of the best phones around, but Samsung can't rest on its laurels just yet because the Nexus 5X, the result of the latest Google and LG partnership, has just hit the shelves. With its 5.2-inch screen and a price that's hard to beat, this new kid on the block could really shake things up. Let's find out if Samsung has something to worry about in our Google Nexus 5X vs Samsung Galaxy S6 comparison.

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Design and build-quality

The Nexus 5X features an all-plastic design. That's not a complete surprise, when you consider the relatively low cost of the handset, but it's certainly not a premium-looking phone. The Galaxy S6 on the other hand, is made of metal. It's also slimmer than the 5X and has a better screen-to-body ratio, but both sport an uncomfortable camera sensor on the back. 

gs6 nexus 5x comparacao
The Galaxy S6 looks like a more premium device than the Nexus 5X / © Samsung / Google /ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Display

The Nexus 5X packs a 5.2-inch, Full HD display. It might lack QHD, but at least this keeps the cost of the handset down. The Galaxy S6, on the other hand, houses a gorgeous QHD display. While the colors are sometimes unrealistically saturated, other manufacturers have struggled to match the quality it provides. 

galaxy s6 nexus 5x tela
The Nexus 5X display is Full HD, the Galaxy S6's is QHD. / © Google / Samsung / ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Software

The Nexus 5X runs on the stock version of Android. This is the user-interface straight from Google, meaning the 5X receives fast updates and lacks any third-party add-ons. It launches with Android 6.0 pre-installed and takes advantage of all it has to offer (you can read more about Android 6.0 Marshmallow at the link). 

The Samsung Galaxy S6 launched with Android Lollipop, but it will be one of the first Samsung devices to be updated to Marshmallow. That being said, I wouldn't buy it if receiving fast updates is your top priority. 

Nexus 5X 5
The Nexus 5X doesn't come with any bloatware, just the stock Google apps. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Camera

The Nexus 5X has a 12 MP camera but we haven't had a chance to put it through its paces yet. Camera tech has never been a strength of the Nexus series, but there seems to have been a big push to improve things on the 5X – it actually houses the same camera as the more expensive Nexus 6P. We'll be sure to let you know how well it works as soon as we finish our full review.

However, the Nexus 5X camera will need to be pretty special to compete with the Galaxy S6's – its one of the finest cameras on Android. With 16 megapixels, and an aperture of f / 1.9, the S6 camera can shoot detailed photos and videos even in low light. It's very impressive.

androidpit galaxy s6 quick launch camera
The Samsung Galaxy S6 camera is one of the best on Android. / © ANDROIDPIT

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Performance

The Nexus 5X comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor. The Galaxy S6 uses Samsung's own Exynos 7420. Both offer good performance, although the S6 just wins out here.

There are a few subtle differences between the two, mostly related to the graphics chips on the 5X and S6. The Galaxy S6 has a Mali-T760 graphics chip capable of producing up to 326 GFlops, while the Adreno 418 tops out at around 172.8 GFlops. If these numbers mean nothing to you, we'll just tell you this: despite the lower values, the Nexus 5X will still be capable of running the latest and most demanding games fairly easily.

Samsung Galaxy S6 home button
Both phones offer good performance although the Galaxy S6 is likely to have the edge. © NextPit

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Battery

You can expect to get a full day's use out of the Galaxy S6 but not much more than that. The Korean manufacturer has provided some useful ways to get around this though, with fast-charging, wireless charging and several power-saving modes helping to keep your phone going longer.

Nexus 5X 11
Neither the Nexus 5X nor the Galaxy S6 house a removable battery. / © ANDROIDPIT

The Nexus 5X has Marshmallow installed and therefore also has its power-saving mode but it only has one option, so it's not as advanced as Samsung's. However, we understand that those working on the Nexus have spent a lot of time studying the consumption of power in the new model, so hopefully it'll last longer than some of its predecessors.

The Nexus 5X also lacks wireless charging, though it has a USB Type-C port for faster charging and data transfer speeds. The S6 uses a micro-USB port, which will be going the way of the dinosaur within the next year or so. 

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Specifications

Google Nexus 5X vs. Samsung Galaxy S6 technical specifications

  Google Nexus 5X Samsung Galaxy S6
Dimensions: 147 x 72.6 x 7.9 mm 143.4 x 70.5 x 6.8 mm
Weight: 136 g 138 g
Battery size: 2700 mAh 2550 mAh
Screen size: 5.2 in 5.1 in
Display technology: LCD AMOLED
Screen: 1920 x 1080 pixels (424 ppi) 2560 x 1440 pixels (576 ppi)
Front camera: 5 megapixels 5 megapixels
Rear camera: 12.3 megapixels 16 megapixels
Flashlight: Dual-LED LED
Android version: 6.0 - Marshmallow 5.0.2 - Lollipop
User interface: Stock Android TouchWiz
RAM: 2 GB 3 GB
Internal storage: 16 GB
32 GB
32 GB
64 GB
128 GB
Removable storage: Not available Not available
Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 Samsung Exynos 7420
Number of cores: 6 8
Max. clock speed: 1.8 GHz 2.1 GHz
Connectivity: HSPA, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 4.0 HSPA, LTE, NFC, Bluetooth 4.1

Nexus 5X vs Galaxy S6: Conclusion

The Galaxy S6 is the better phone in most areas. It has a nicer display, better camera, faster processing and superior design. If you're debating which to buy, the primary consideration really has to be price. If money isn't too much of a concern, the S6 is better, it's a top end phone and does exactly what you'd expect. However, with the Nexus 5X costing US$379 and the Galaxy S6 about US$520 – you have to ask whether the upgrade is worth it.

One big benefit the Nexus 5X does provide is that stock Android experience. Some users have a fundamental dislike of Samsung's TouchWiz software. If you're one such person, stick with the 5X.

Which device would you prefer? A Nexus 5X or a Galaxy S6? Let us know in the comments. 

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  • Chris Brown Dec 19, 2015 Link to comment

    Im considering getting the Nexsus 5x until the 6p comes down in price and because AT&T denies me root on my S6. So that is why I would be getting it.

  • Leonidas Savvides Dec 19, 2015 Link to comment

    I consider buy one of the two
    the LG Nexus 5x since has No home hard button, most of the time shows this on the bottom of the screen so screen estate is less for it?
    on the other hand S6 never shows the bottom bar?

    • itprolonden May 27, 2016 Link to comment

      You can hide the bottom bar on the 5x. You can't on the s6

  • tkinsf Dec 9, 2015 Link to comment

    I bought both during the cyber monday at $299 and $389 respectively. I returned 5X. The street price for 3/32gb S6 is less than $500 these days, the difference of about $50, apple to apple. For that, you get better display, wireless charging, OIC, higher performance chips and much better body. There is no denying that S6 is a step up from 5X. Frankly, it would make sense if 2/16gb 5X was priced at $299, as it did during the cyber monday. There are just too many capable sub-300 phones on the market today.

  • Chuckster Nov 23, 2015 Link to comment

    You're misleading readers with an unfair price comparison. If you want 32 GB on the Nexus 5x, which is really the standard hard drive these days, cost is $450. Not so cheap when you get the normal hard drive. You'd be stupid to get a 16 GB drive with this phone.

    • Brandon Kilgore Dec 4, 2015 Link to comment

      Wrong. Quite the opposite actually. I have used only 4gbs out of 32 on my Nexus 6. There is absolutely no reason to have such large memory's on our phones anymore. Not with cloud services.

      • Nichlas Dec 8, 2015 Link to comment

        That is if you've always got good 3G/4G connection and a big/huge data plan. I haven't used more than 50mb/100mb in months or years thanks to an 32gb SD card with my music on.

  • Kannan Oct 25, 2015 Link to comment

    Both devices are available at the same price in India (32GB variant), so I think it is better to buy Galaxy S6, unless you are a developer?

  • gotzaDroid Oct 25, 2015 Link to comment

    I own both a S6 edge and the nexus 5X and for day to day usage, the 5X is my phone of choice hands down. My S6E stutters, lags, constantly redraws the home screen after exiting apps and it gets so hot, I don't want to hold it. Even simple games like Sonic Boom lag, and don't get me started on the aggressive RAM management.

    Now with my N5X, everything is as smooth as butter, no home screen redraws and I haven't had any issues playing games like Sonic Boom. This thing never gets hot and I can actually see the screen in direct sunlight unlike the S6E.

    So I know on paper the S6E is the winner, but all the horsepower in the world won't move you anywhere if it's not paired up with the right drivetrain. And Samsung's drivetrain, the abortion of Android called TouchWiz, kills any joy from the S6E experience. Maybe if there was a GPE S6E, I'd have a different view on it, but I'll never buy a TW based phone again.

    • he4995 Oct 25, 2015 Link to comment

      maybe you're unlucky. my brother's got the s6 and it's really fast. he plays that game sonic boom and mortal kombat x almost all the time and he says it has never got too hot and is very smooth with very little or minor stutter almost zero lag. it's weird why is your s6e so lousy.

    • Rajendra Kumar Oct 27, 2015 Link to comment

      Are you sure you have a galaxy s6 edge! It might be a duplicate one...for gods sake s6 series runs 7420 the best processor the best on planet and 4 gb DDR4 (fastest ram) and touchwiz is far more sleek. Being a nexus fan myself i vouch that pure android is best but this doesnt mean it can just overturn a far far better hardware.

    • chemtroll Nov 27, 2015 Link to comment

      I can imagine. Concerning the hardware the S6 edge is superior for sure. I compared it with my N5X. Doing daily tasks they are surprisingly on the same level. I did not consider multitasking or very CPU/RAM consuming games. Probably the S6 would be the winner there. Personally I prefer the N5X.

      • itprolonden May 27, 2016 Link to comment

        Yes. The 5x doesn't have the overhead.

    • Marc Baeten Dec 11, 2015 Link to comment

      This is exactly what i needed to know from this article... I only own the S6 edge and have similar troubles... always laggy, specially in news-sites and similar apps with moving advertisements... Besides the thing irritating me on this, it also eats my battery with wifi on (it only lasts till about 3PM, without doning that much with it). Also, bluetooth car connection cannot remain over 60sec connected when calling... i'm looking to replace it with a Nexus (owned a N4 before the S6e), but don't want a >5.5" phone. I'll miss the sleek design and the nice color (Emerald) though...

    • slashCoder Mar 7, 2016 Link to comment

      Wow! I was just reading your comments and it was like reading my own thoughts! I haven't tested the Nexus 5X yet, but I used to be the proud owner of a plain 5 from 2013 and at it's time, that was the best phone I've ever seen. Now I have an S6 edge and I hate it with all my forces, most expensive phone ever and the most laggy and buggy also. I love stock Android and really hate TouchWiz; it's like you pointed out a spawn from the devil. T-Mobile won't let me return my S6 edge which I've only paid 1/3 of, so I'm basically stuck with this crap for another 1.5 years. I'm probably getting the Nexus 5X anyway, especially after reading your comment.

    • niksworld May 20, 2016 Link to comment

      You bet, touch wiz sucks!

      I know you could use google launcher, material theme on S6 but stock is stock, no need to cover up the shame of Samsung's touch wiz!

    • niksworld May 20, 2016 Link to comment

      You bet, touch wiz sucks!

      I know you could use google launcher, material theme on S6 but stock is stock, no need to cover up the shame of Samsung's touch wiz!

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