Xiaomi is now the No 1 smartphone company in India and one mobile model from Xiaomi is single-handedly responsible for this feat and that is the Redmi Note 4. Last year’s Redmi Note 4 turned out to be the most popular choice and it sold like hot cakes. So when Xiaomi comes up with a new mobile to replace the Redmi Note 4, they have to do better than the Note 4. This is huge pressure and Xiaomi has launched two mobiles to succeed the throne: Redmi Note 5 and the Redmi Note 5 Pro. Redmi Note 5 is a small but essential increment over the Redmi Note 4 and I will talk about it in another post. In here, let me talk to you about the Redmi Note 5 Pro and tell you if that should be your next mobile.
Redmi Note 5 Pro still carries on a lot of design ID from Redmi Note 4, but it is much sleeker and stylish. It is made of metal. The biggest highlight of the Redmi Note 5 Pro is its full vision edge to edge display. For some reason, I felt that the display is stunning as I first held this mobile in my hands. The display is one of the brightest design highlights of this mobile. Otherwise, the display is reminiscent of the earlier generations of Redmi mobiles. It is taller and narrower, thanks to the 18:9 aspect ratio display. At the bottom are the 3.5mm audio port, mic, micro USB port and speaker grill. The top has the IR port. The buttons are all found on one side while the hybrid SIM tray was on the other. The display on the front is a full vision display with 18:9 aspect ratio. The back has a dual camera setup while the front camera has an LED flash. The back camera arrangements and the oblong shape of the camera ring remind me of the iPhone X. The fingerprint sensor is placed at the back and it is fast and accurate. The loudspeaker at the bottom is loud and clocks over 100 dbA of sound.The mobile is comfortable to hold and handle. Redmi Note 5 Pro feels solid and it is a sturdily built mobile.
Redmi Note 5 Pro has a 5.99 inch IPS LCD Panel supporting Full HD resolution. The display is bright and it has deep contrast levels. It is warm and the image and text rendering is sharp. The touch response is very responsive and the mobile felt smooth to use. It is bright and the mobile artifacts are clearly visible under all lighting conditions. Xiaomi has been consistent in the display department and with Redmi Note 5 Pro, they have just maintained their standards.
Hardware and Performance
Xiaomi is probably the only company that has used the Snapdragon 625 in most of its mobiles last year. Snapdragon 625 is an excellent processor, but we need a change. A change that would bring in more horsepower and enhanced graphics rendering capabilities. Behold the Snapdragon 636! Our prayers were answered and the Redmi Note 5 Pro is the world’s first mobile to be powered by a Snapdragon 636. It has Adreno 509 for GPU. It also has a 4 GB or 6 GB RAM LDDDR4X which is normally seen in the top end mobiles. With such a powerhouse, we get a blazingly fast performance. It is considerably faster than the Redmi Note 5. The graphics rendering quality is also good. Gaming was smooth with no frame drop and the mobile was cool as a cucumber, even when you use it for resource-intensive tasks for more than 2 hours continuously.
Audio over the earphone has been a worry for many. But in my review unit, I had no issues. It has all the required sensors like gyroscope, magnetometer, accelerometer, proximity sensor etc. When it comes to the hardware, Xiaomi has left no stone unturned. Redmi Note 5 Pro would give you a performance par excellence.
Redmi Note 4 was an all-rounder, almost. It lacked a good camera and that comment from its buyers seems to have hit Xiaomi’s ego and like a bruised soldier, Xiaomi has gone all out on its camera department with the Redmi Note 5 Pro. It has a dual camera setup at the back which looks like iPhone x camera but performs like a Pixel 2. You read it right, it has a good camera which has impressed me in all departments. It has a good dynamic range and a perfect white balance. The images have good sharpness and it retains details even when shot under challenging light conditions. It has a secondary 5 MP depth-sensing camera, but it also employs machine learning algorithm for portrait shots. Edge detection and background blurring are natural.
It has electronic image stabilization for shooting videos. It supports full HD recording and it would soon get 4K recording capability via an OTA update. The stabilization is smooth and unbelievably pleasant to watch. Colors are a bit faded out sometimes as the white balance is little off the charts. Otherwise, the Note 5 Pro has impressive camera recording capability
Redmi Note 5 Pro Camera Samples
Finally, Xiaomi has upgraded the front camera on the Redmi Note 5 Pro to a 20 MP sensor. Images from the front camera seem to have found a right balance in-between software beautification and natural color tones. It gives sharp details under ample light conditions and noise creeps in a bit under low or challenging light condition, which is expected from a sensor with a high megapixel count. Overall, Redmi Note 5 Pro has an impressive camera quality for the price range.
Redmi Note 5 Pro runs on the latest version of MIUI 9, but it is still based on Android Noughat. While most complain about the lack of latest Android version out of the box, it does not matter to me because the MIUI 9 offers a lot more than the base Android. MIUI 9 on Redmi Note 5 Pro is smooth and has no lags. I have installed over 40 applications and filled the memory to the brim. The mobile was able to handle the software with no issues. MIUI 9 has some interesting features which add a lot of utility value to the user experience.
The mobile runs on a 4000 mAh battery. It supports fast charging, but the charger in the box is not a fast charger. You can buy a Xiaomi Fast charger from mi.com, but the stock charger is designed to safeguard your mobile from voltage fluctuations and spikes. It can be charged the mobile from 0 to 100% in about 2:30 hours and the fast charger only saves about 15 minutes. Once charged, the mobile can last for over 2 days of moderate usage. On intensive usage, Redmi Note 5 Pro gives a screen on-time of 12 to 13 hours, which is impressive.
This year 2018 is a year that is going to be a period where mobiles are not going to be innovating anything new other than stretching the aspect ratio. Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro may not be an innovative mobile, but it is built for two purposes and they are performance and value for money. It is priced at Rs 13999 for the 4 GB variant and for that price it offers a sturdy design, bright display, amazing camera, hardware and battery performance. Mobile manufacturers in 2018 will be looking to beat the Redmi Note 5 Pro in all these segments and they will have a tough time doing so. The 6 GB variant may not be worth the price as I don’t see the additional RAM doing anything significant in terms of price to performance ratio. Redmi Note 5 Pro is highly recommended mobile from GadgetDetail under the budget flagship mobiles segment.