• Display: 5.99-inch Full HD+
  • System on Chip: Snapdragon 636
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0, 5G WI-Fi
  • Memory: 3GB/4GB RAM
  • Storage: 32GB/64GB internal storage, microSD up to 128GB
  • Operating System: MIUI 9
  • Camera: 12-megapixel + 5-megapixel (Rear), 13-megapixel (Front)
  • Dimensions: 158.6 x 75.4 x 0.05 mm
  • Weight: 181g
  • Pros:
  • Price
  • Cons:
  • Slight halo effect on Portrait Mode

An Interesting Red Note

The Redmi Note 5 is the latest device from Xiaomi and it comes with some pretty impressive specs for its price tag. Once you unbox the device, you are presented with a device that’s reminiscent of the 2017 design motto with its almost bezel-less display and dual rear cameras. A silicone case is also packaged along with the phone, so you can spare yourself the headache of scrounging out a casing.

The display is bright and vibrant, and can be customised to display a warmer or cooler colour, or toggled to reading mode to reduce eye strain. Xiaomi’s MIUI is layered on top of Android 8.0 and it’s a breeze to use. It has a minimalistic feel to it, with a plethora of features for you to customise and fiddle around with. The large 5.99-inch display should be sufficiently large for most people. You should be able to play games, watch movies, browse the web on and even watch YouTube videos on it comfortably. With the presence of a headphone jack, you can also plug in headphones to immerse yourself in the world you hold in your hands.

Despite being a budget device, the phone is fitted with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 processor. Compared to other budget devices in the market, the Note 5 is a powerful beast to be reckoned with. It is powered by a massive 4,000 mAh battery that should last you almost a day, if you use it purely as a multimedia device. Gaming, multitasking, browsing the net and other daily tasks are pretty decent, with only minor stutters if you are constantly switching apps when gaming and chatting. It even handles PUBG Mobile pretty well.

However, the star of the show is with the phone’s dual rear camera setup. Thanks to a 12-megapixel + 5-megapixel combo, it is able to supply you with high-quality images in decent lighting conditions. However, we have noticed that pictures under low light are pretty grainy. Selfies are decent on the front camera, but not as good as the portrait mode of the rear cameras. When taking portrait shots, you might notice a slight halo effect surrounding the subject.

Overall, for a device that is one ringgit away from RM1,000, it slots in nicely for those who wants a decently priced device with good specs. It will be able to carry you throughout daily use with its large display and capable battery.

CHIP CONCLUDE: Another good take from budget smartphone extraordinaire, Xiaomi, that elegantly tackles the requirements of a budget smartphone while offering decent specs.

(previously published in issue June 2018)