Hardware Overview, Performance and Camera
As I mentioned earlier, the Galaxy S6 Active’s hardware is very similar to the Galaxy S6. The SoC Samsung has opted for is the very same Exynos 7420, which means we’re looking at an octa-core CPU: four ARM Cortex-A57 cores clocked at 2.1 GHz, plus four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1.5 GHz. There’s also a Mali-T760 GPU clocked at 772 MHz, and an LPDDR4 memory controller providing 24.88 GB/s of bandwidth.
As for wireless connectivity, the Galaxy S6 Active features Category 6 LTE support, Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS+GLONASS, and NFC. The LTE bands the S6 Active supports are bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 17 and 20, which covers the most widely used frequencies across the globe. There’s also 3 GB of RAM in this smartphone.
Internally there’s 32 GB of non-expandable storage, which is a little slim for my liking. Ideally I’d like to see devices without expandable storage, especially in the flagship category, come with 64 GB of storage as standard. 32 GB is fine for installing apps and taking photos, but it can be a bit restrictive if you plan on storing a lot of music or videos.
In terms of performance, what you experience from the Galaxy S6 Active is identical to the Galaxy S6. If you want to see a full performance breakdown of how this device compares to the competition, head over to our review of the Galaxy S6. I’ve included a few benchmarks below to give you an idea, but essentially this phone delivers class-leading performance.
The display is also very similar, in fact identical to, the display found on the Galaxy S6. This means you’re getting a 5.1-inch Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440, equating to a pixel density of 577 PPI. This particular panel is generally excellent, and you can read more of my thoughts on it in my Galaxy S6 review.
The S6 Active’s camera is also the same as the Galaxy S6’s. It’s the same Sony IMX240 sensor, a 1/2.6” CMOS unit with a resolution of 16-megapixels, 1.12 micron pixels, and a 16:9 native aspect ratio. It’s paired with an f/1.9 lens with an effective focal length of 28mm, and optical image stabilization. The front camera is a Samsung S5K4E6, which is a 1/4.1” five-megapixel sensor with 1.34 micron pixels, paired with a 22mm f/1.9 sensor.
Like the Galaxy S6 camera, which you can read more about in my review of the Galaxy S6, the S6 Active camera is awesome. It produces great quality images in most conditions, records decent 4K video, and – thanks to the water resistant body in the S6 Active – it can be used for underwater photography.