8.1 Awesome

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro is among top 5 budgeted smartphones at the moment. You can pay less but expect more. It has a faster processor, an LPDDR4X supported memory, good camera and above average battery life. The TechSeer will give it an 8.1 out of a solid 10.

  • Design 7.7
  • Camera 8
  • Performance 8.5
  • Battery Life 8

Xiaomi is one of the top Chinese brands that has successfully established its name and symbol in the Indian market. Of course with 1.3 million population; you definitely can achieve something if you put efforts. Xiaomi’s competitive edge here is the pricing. At about 200 EUR, 250 AUD or 190 USD, you can purchase their latest Redmi Note series “Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro”.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro Review

You cannot say it is one of the best smartphones out there but it sure is one of the topmost budgeted smartphones that came out in 2018. It can easily beat the new Nokia 3 2018 and Nokia 5 2018. The company is launching multiple smartphones every year which confuses most of its consumers but this Redmi Note series is the one which has the most sells.

Pros:

  • New front and back cameras
  • Faster processor and LPDDR4X memory
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • MiUi Software
  • Average Build

Build and Design

  • 5.99″ with 18:9 aspect ratio
  • Taller and narrower
  • Heavier than predecessor

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro and Redmi Note 5 are almost similar in design and shape wise. One of the major difference is Note 5 Pro comes in a golden color as well. But this smartphone is totally different in design compared to its last year predecessor. It is made up of metal and plastic. It has a 5.99-inch display with 18:9 aspect ratio, a rear fingerprint scanner, and a metallic body. The bezels are not so thin and kind of annoying if you own a white Redmi Note 5 Pro. You can clearly notice the difference when using the phone.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro is heavier than its sibling Redmi Note 5. Of course, none of us would want a heavy phone in 2018. I still think iPhone X is a bit heavy and that Apple should make it lightweight next year. On the good side, this heaviness increases its sturdiness and it can take a few drops until you see a broken display. Due to 18:9 display upgrade, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro does look taller and narrower. The fingerprint scanner is very easy to reach.

On the rear, it has a dual lens camera set up and the lens just out just like iPhone X. On the right side, we have a power button and volume keys. The left side has a Hybrid dual sim tray which was not a good idea considering you cannot use 2 sims and insert a memory card at the same time. The glass on the front is curved from the sides and after 2 years the company has finally started using Gorilla glass although its version is still unspecified.

Display

  • FHD display with 403 ppi pixel density
  • No notch

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro features a 5.99-inch FHD display which looks pretty decent for a smartphone at this price. It offers 1080*2160 pixels with 403 ppi density. The screen is an IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen which we found is pretty usual for Xiaomi smartphones. The screen to body ratio is 77.4%. Unfortunately, there is no notch. The display is readable and satisfactory in direct sunlight. Colors are warm and bright enough and the contrast ratio is up to the mark.

The screen has multiple setting options through which you define the colors. By default, it is on Automatic mode which means you can enjoy ambient lighting conditions. You can increase the contrast hence the saturation but I would usually prefer default settings in most of my mobiles. You can also change it to the standard mode which is a better option due to better contrast and color temperature. We found excellent image quality on this mode and the images looked more lively.

Hardware and Performance

  • 30% faster and more efficient
  • Powerful GPU plays latest games
  • 3.5mm headphone jack still on

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro features a Snapdragon 636 chipset which is unusual for a smartphone at this price range. We have observed other companies use this chipset in their high-end smartphones but this is not the case here. Its sibling Redmi 5 here runs on a Snapdragon 625 chipset which now sure is almost outdated.

This chipset runs on custom Kryo cores. That means it runs on all 8 cores which has helped this smartphone in maintaining its speed. The company claims that this smartphone is faster than Redmi Note 5. And it sure is. Our testing has revealed Redmi Note 5 Pro is almost 30% faster and more efficient than Redmi Note 5.

You can compare both of them side by side. You will feel the apps run better and smooth, less loading time and more satisfactory performance. They both have different chipsets and Redmi Note 5 is basically a cheaper version of Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro. Its GPU is powerful enough to play latest 2018 mobile games. We played a few games but did not find any sort of lag whatsoever.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro comes with Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.0. Xiaomi has established this strategy just now to gain more consumers. Fortunately, the smartphone comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack so you can use your old school headphones with it. There is no USB-C as expected and we are still stuck with microUSB ports just like in latest Nokia 3 2018 and Nokia 5 2018.

If you own a Redmi Note 4 then I won’t recommend you to go for this smartphone considering it does not offer much if you already have its predecessor.

Software

  • Lots of MiUi complaints
  • MiUi is for the Chinese market only
  • No stock android option

This is one the department where Xiaomi is defeated. How? The company is still going for its stock MiUi software instead of opting for stock Android. The company fans have made it pretty clear that they want an android stock next time. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro comes with Android 7.1.1 Nougat underneath MiUi 9. That means it is a custom built android version and not the actual stock firmware which we see in other devices.

But you get certain benefits from its custom MiUi firmware. You can use Dual apps feature where you can use one app from 2 different accounts on the same smartphone. CallerID is a feature which tells you whether the call is spam or not. You can set 2 different profiles on the same phone as well. But you can always download apps like these from Android stores. There is no reason for you to use MiUi specifically for this purpose, right?

MiUi was basically made for the Chinese market and it literally has no use in the Indian market. If this company want to grow and set its foot in the international market then it should leave this custom based ROM.

Camera

  • Dual lens rear cameras
  • No telephoto lens

In 2018; more and more people are going for smartphones which have better cameras, after all, we need to update our status and posts on different social accounts. There’s a reason Huawei P20 Pro has so much hype at the moment. Xiaomi has done a great job this year and you can see clear camera result differences between last year devices and this year devices. They have copied the Apple iPhone X camera design on the rear. Sure it looks like an iPhone camera but it will behave like a Xiaomi camera.

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro produces good images with its dual lens camera. It features a Dual 12 MP (f/2.2, 1.25µm) and 5 MP (f/2.0, 1.12µm) camera with dual-LED flash. Rest of the camera features are pretty normal which includes Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, panorama, and HDR. It can produce good images in low light as well.

You will have an option to go for Portrait mode thanks to MiUi latest update. The HDR mode can be enabled from the top but there is no option for Auto HDR mode. You can capture nice looking images which look more natural from the rear camera. We have zoomed the images at 100% and the quality was almost the same. But they are not of the same quality comparatively when we did it with HTC U12 plus or Huawei P20 Pro. Of course, there is a reason these smartphones come labeled as budgeted smartphones.

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro offers a 5MP secondary camera on the rear but it lacks telephoto lens. The telephoto lens helps in blurring background images in a better way. Redmi Note 5 Pro defeats Redmi Note 5 in the camera section and you should choose the Pro if you are into taking lots of images and selfies. It has extra features and offers more comparatively.

Xiaomi Redmi 5 Pro offers a 20 MP (f/2.2, 1/2.8″, 1µm) front camera with LED flash. It is capable of recording videos up to 1080p. It is better in taking selfies compared to its predecessor. Details are high and images look natural enough, unlike other Chinese smartphones.

Battery Life

  • 4000mAh battery
  • Above average battery life
  • No quick charging option

Battery life is one of the features where Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro takes the edge. People today mostly care about 2 things in a smartphone. Its battery life and the camera. And Xiaomi is well known for giving its consumers a smartphone with long battery life. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro has a non-removable Li-Po 4000 mAh battery. Our testing showed a continuous use of 8 hours including watching videos, surfing the internet and playing with different apps can take your charge from 100 to 10 percent. This is pretty good. An average user can last more than a whole day or 24 hours on a full charge.

The phone supports QuickCharge 2.0 instead of QuickCharge 4.0. There is no fast charger included in the package but don’t purchase it since you won’t be getting any benefit off of it. Both the normal and quick chargers charged the device in about 2:30 hours from 0 to 100%. The company should start using USB-C to adapt quick charging methods.

Verdict: Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro

Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro is among top 5 budgeted smartphones at the moment. You can pay less but expect more. It has a faster processor, an LPDDR4X supported memory, good camera and above average battery life. The TechSeer will give it an 8.1 out of a solid 10.

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