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Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 7 Pro review: Reliable performance in a new design

Shruti Dhapola
Redmi Note 7 Pro review: With a 48MP rear camera, glass body design and a Snapdragon 675 processor, this promises to be the best Redmi Note phone launched till date. Here’s how it performed in our review.

Redmi Note 7 Pro Review: The Redmi Note 7 Pro is Xiaomi's most important launch in India till date. The Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with some major changes. It sports a completely revamped glass design body. It has a newer Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor. And there's a 48MP rear camera with Redmi using the Sony IMX586 sensor that we have also seen on other phones like the more expensive Honor View20.

Redmi Note 7 Pro is once again promising a performance better than most other phones at what sounds like an unbelievable price of Rs 13,999. But how does Redmi Note 7 Pro really perform? Here's our review.

Redmi Note 7 Pro specifications

6.3-inch full HD+ resolution display | Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 octa-core processor | 4GB or 6GB RAM + 64GB or 128GB storage | 48MP+5MP rear camera and 13MP front camera | 4000 mAh battery | MIUI 10 with Android Pie 9

Redmi Note 7 Pro price in India: Rs 13,999

Redmi Note 7 Pro review: Design, Display

The Redmi Note 7 Pro certainly looks more premium compared to the last two phones in this series. The glass body design is a refreshing change from the metal unibody of Redmi Note 5 and 6 Pro. The phone has Corning Gorilla Glass 5 at the back and front. The build quality looks and feels solid, and so far I have not noticed any major scratches on the device.

The build quality of the Redmi Note 7 Pro is impressive.

Our review unit was Black, the most sober of the lot, and will appeal to those who do not care for the blingy Red and Blue colours. My preference though was for the Red, given you rarely see such design and effect at this price point. We have seen brands like Honor introduce the glass body design in this price segment previously with phones like Honor 9N.

Redmi Note 7 Pro is splash-resistant with P2i coating and comes with a Type-C USB port. While the glass body looks good, it is also a fingerprint magnet and this design also makes the phone more fragile. Make sure you should get a good quality cover for this immediately, though Xiaomi is shipping a simple plastic case with this one.

Redmi Note 7 Pro’s display works well for its price.

Another concern with the design would be the prominent camera bump at the back. In fact, even with the cover inside the box, this juts out and poses a safety issue.

The Redmi Note 7 Pro has a 6.3-inch full HD+ resolution display, which works well, no matter the lighting conditions. It is legible in bright sunlight, though the display could be brighter. The new waterdrop notch means it has a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. I found the display was more than adequate when it came to gaming, watch videos on YouTube.

Redmi Note 7 Pro review: Performance, software

The Redmi Note 7 Pro's performance is impressive, though I found this to be the case for most Redmi Note phones. This time though Xiaomi has upgraded the series to the newer Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 octa-core processor. It gets an Antutu score of around 180,00 which puts it just below the two-year-old Galaxy Note 8 in the list, which has a score of around 200,000 plus.

Redmi Note 7 Pro GeekBench and Antutu scores.

On GeekBench, the phone scores 6487 in multi-core and 2384 in single-core, which is comparable to Galaxy Note 8 scores. For a Rs 13,999 phone, these scores are impressive. Our review unit has 4GB RAM and 64GB storage option, though you can go for 6GB RAM and 128GB storage as well.

Even in daily usage, we found Redmi Note 7 Pro to be quick and responsive to most tasks. It can easily handle more than 15 tabs on Chrome without any lag, running graphics-intensive games like Asphalt 9 was smooth without any stutter or noticeable frame drop. Even a flood of notifications from WhatsApp did not cause the phone to become slow.

However, I felt that the Nova Legacy on this phone was not such a smooth experience, but this is still better than most budget phones. I also noticed that the top part of the Redmi Note 7 Pro got rather warm after playing Asphalt 9 for just 15 minutes.

Games like Asphalt 9 run perfectly well on Redmi Note 7 Pro.

The phone is running MIUI based on Android Pie. It is good to see Xiaomi introduce Android Pie with this. However, the heavy customisation means features like Digital Well-being and Adaptive display are not yet available on this phone, which is a miss. But Adaptive Battery, which is useful in extending battery life by relying on AI to figure out which apps you use less and thus reducing background access to those, is available.

The software settings also include the option to hide the notch. MIUI 10 does continue to show ads, especially from the Mi App Store, which keeps pushing apps to install. Swiping right from Homescreen has the customised MIUI screen with content, app recommendations, which again has recommended apps and ads right on top, which is annoying.

The Redmi Note 7 Pro UI is Android Pie based. The ads from the Mi App store though are very annoying.

Redmi Note 7 Pro review: Battery

Redmi Note 7 Pro has a 4000 mAh battery, which will easily last around a day and a half, depending on your usage. Even with heavy duty usage, the phone should last the whole day for a user. This would include gaming for more than an hour, calls, social media, and video consumption.

I found that even when I charged the phone for 50 per cent only, it would still have battery left for the next day with moderate usage. Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with support for QC 4.0 though you will have to purchase a separate charger for that.

Redmi Note 7 Pro review: Camera

Camera is the most hyped part of the Redmi Note 7 Pro. The phone has a 48MP+5MP camera combination at the back with Xiaomi using the Sony IMX586 sensor for the 48MP camera.

So is the camera worth all the hype? Should flagships be worried? Yes, this is an excellent camera. But it does not beat the flagships yet, and one should not even expect that, despite all the claims you will likely see on the internet.

Read more: Redmi Note 7 Pro with 48MP camera: Here's what we have learnt about the camera

The highlight of the Redmi Note 7 Pro is the camera.

Redmi Note 7 Pro shoots in 12MP in default mode. For 48MP resolution, you have to switch to the Pro mode, and manually press the 48MP resolution. Pictures at this resolution are heavy, around 13-16MB on average. The phone takes a few seconds to process when you shoot in 48MP.

Yes, the picture quality is excellent. The colours are vibrant, though on the more saturated side. The overall image is pleasing. With 48MP, I would say you will need a tripod to really get everything in focus. For example, I could see the details inside the flower that was in focus, which you will not experience on most budget phones.

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But the rest of the image is not as sharp when I really zoom in and for the average user, the 48MP mode might not be the default option they prefer.

Redmi Note 7 Pro sample in regular 12MP size.
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The regular 12MP mode on the camera will be good enough for the average user. The camera responds quickly and there were no issues with locking focus either. Though I notice that in some photos, especially those taken in bright sunlight, the pictures would burn.

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Redmi Note 7 Pro sample in regular 12MP mode.

Coming to the Night mode, you will need to stay really still to get this right. The brighter picture does come at the cost of details, which is not so great. Still, the camera performs admirably for its price in this mode. But the Night mode will not always get the colours right.

The selfie camera is good, but this does not mark a drastic improvement from the previous two generations of the Redmi Note phones. With a little bit of editing, you should get the results you looking for.

Redmi Note 7 Pro samples in indoor lighting with low-light. (Image resized for web)
Redmi Note 7 Pro samples in indoor lighting with low-light. (Image resized for web)
Redmi Note 7 Pro samples in low-light. (Image resized for web)
Redmi Note 7 Pro sample. (Image resized for web)

Redmi Note 7 Pro: Verdict

This phone has a lot of positives. The design has improved drastically and so has the camera. The performance is smooth, and the Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with a big battery.

The negatives were the device heating up while gaming, the user interface being heavily customised, which leaves out some key Android Pie features. The selfie camera could also be better.

For anyone in the market looking to buy a budget phone under Rs 15,000, the Redmi Note 7 Pro is a no-brainer. The reason: For this price, the Redmi Note 7 Pro is a complete package, with very little flaws.

And what about those who bought the Redmi Note 6 Pro or Note 5 Pro? Upgrading might not be the best idea. I say this not because Redmi Note 7 Pro has nothing new to offer. But the earlier two Note devices were also excellent phones, and are barely more than a year old.

For those still using the older Redmi Note 4, Redmi Note 5, Redmi Note 3 or even the more basic Redmi series, this could be a good one to consider for an upgrade.