Review of Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 Pro. It Turned out Cooler Than Everyone wanted
A wonderful smartphone, but not without cons.
Xiaomi updates the Redmi Note line with an enviable frequency. Back in March last year, the company released the seventh generation of Redmi Note Pro, but now the ninth is already available. However, this is only a plus. Models of previous generations are getting cheaper, and in the new “laptops” the necessary chips are added faster than usual, which were not there before. Redmi Note 9 Pro with a bunch of innovations and a newly redesigned design is direct proof of this.
Spent a week with Redmi Note 9 Pro before launching the smartphone in the official Russian retail and appreciated the efforts of Xiaomi. The smartphone has changed a lot and prettier, but it still has its minuses. He told about everything in detail in this review.
A familiar but refreshed design
Xiaomi continues to refine the design of the Redmi Note Proline, set a little over a year ago in Redmi Note 7 Pro. The smartphone has a case with slightly rounded corners and a curved back surface for ease of use.
Unlike Redmi Note 9 without the prefix Pro, about which I spoke in detail earlier, the “firmware” has a glass cover. Glossy glass with gradient color shimmers effectively depending on how the light falls on it. It looks beautiful, but practicality in this solution is not enough. Glass collects fingerprints instantly, you just have to take a smartphone without a case in your hand.
Included with the smartphone is a cover of the usual “complete” quality. He had to put it on a smartphone just a few days later when he thoroughly got tired of wiping off the spots left with his fingers.
Almost every new Redmi Note changes the position of the camera unit. Redmi designers are trying in this way to distinguish new smartphones from old ones. And record sales almost every time hint that such a move works.
In Redmi Note 9 Pro, the camera is located in the center of the rear surface of the case. A block with four lenses protrudes from the body and constantly strives to catch on something. If you wear a smartphone without a case, then he, be sure, will regularly cling to his trouser pocket – checked. If you put the smartphone in the same complete case, then the camera unit stops sticking out against the background of the rest of the back surface. It turns out that the case solves two smartphone problems at once. Good efficiency.
A big change to the Redmi Note 9 Pro compared to its predecessor is a fingerprint scanner. If earlier it was located behind, under the cameras, now it is located at the end. The scanner is built into the power button, like many other modern smartphones.
The fingerprint scanner is worth praising. Without embellishment, it works rapidly fast. Unlocking is carried out in a split second, which contributes to the lack of animation when moving to the main screen.
Just above the power button is the volume rocker. It’s unclear how Xiaomi allowed this, but the buttons are definitely too high. Reaching them, holding the smartphone in one hand, is a task only for owners of frankly large hands. The inconvenience is not exactly caused by the dimensions of the smartphone – 165.8 × 76.7 × 8.8 mm. This is the usual size for modern smartphones, nothing supernaturally bulky.
On the opposite side is a tray for two SIM cards and a microSD memory card. At the bottom there are holes for the speaker and microphone, a 3.5 mm audio output and a USB-C connector. At the top there is an opening for an additional microphone and an infrared port.
Redmi Note 9 Pro is far from the lightest smartphone. Its weight is 209 g. When switching to the device from many popular smartphones, from the same iPhones to the “eight”, you will be very surprised at the severity. Initially, it will be very unusual, but it takes only a few days to get comfortable.
Classic IPS-matrix without chips
Redmi Note 9 Pro is equipped with a large 6.67-inch display on a traditionally high-quality IPS-matrix with a resolution of 1080 × 2400 pixels (395 ppi). The aspect ratio of the screen is 20: 9. Yes, the screens of Redmi smartphones are getting narrower. It seems that, as experts predict, we are moving towards a trend for elongated smartphones, among which, thanks to the efforts of Xiaomi, there will be mid-budget ones.
The display covers the protective glass Corning Gorilla Glass 5. He is no longer surprised at Xiaomi smartphones. The company uses it even in more affordable models. Also, the screen has a high-quality oleophobic coating.
The brightness of the display is 450 cd / m², the contrast – 1500: 1. On sunny spring and summer days, the image on the smartphone screen is viewed well, without much difficulty. The same goes for the text. At maximum brightness, working with a smartphone on the street is quite comfortable.
If you’ve been using Redmi Note smartphones in the last couple of years, the picture quality of the Note 9 Pro will be familiar to you. Here all the same 16 million colors and NTSC color space coverage – 84%. Simply put, a good IPS display with rich colors and the right color rendering.
The only drawback of the Redmi Note 9 Pro display against the background of some particularly advanced competitors is the lack of support for an increased refresh rate. Of course, 90 or 120 Hz screens have not yet appeared in all flagships, but it was from the Note 9 Pro that they expected this. Just because Realme, one of Xiaomi’s main competitors, recently released a Realme 6 Pro smartphone with a 90 Hz screen.
The Return of the Prodigal Son and 6 GB of RAM
Snapdragon fans rejoice! Xiaomi returned the Note 9 Pro line to Qualcomm processors, abandoning MediaTek chips. It is possible that one of the reasons is the negative on the Internet, which after the release of Note 8 Pro with the MediaTek processor was really a lot.
For performance Redmi Note 9 Pro meets the system on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G processor. This is an eight-core chip with two high-performance Kryo 465 Gold cores and six energy-efficient Kryo 465 Silver cores. Soren integrates the Adreno 618 video processor.
The processor supports 6 GB of RAM LPDDR4X. The seriousness of Redmi regarding the Note 9 Pro manifests itself in the presence of a smartphone with only one configuration with 6 GB of RAM. The same Redmi Note 9, which is only slightly cheaper than the “firmware”, in the basic version has only 3 GB of “RAM”. The built-in memory of the smartphone is 64 or 128 GB, depending on the configuration.
The Snapdragon 720G coupled with 6 GB of RAM did the trick. Redmi Note 9 Pro – a smartphone, as it seems, is not able to upset anyone with its performance. The device quickly copes with all daily tasks. And how much do not load, he will not care. All thanks to 6 GB of RAM, which allows you to keep dozens of applications and even games in the background.
With games, Redmi Note 9 Pro is also in full order. Tested the smartphone on a gentleman’s set: PUBG Mobile, Call of Duty: Mobile and World of Tanks Blitz. Each game went adequately at maximum settings. CoD Mobile drove about an hour in order to evaluate how the smartphone behaves under prolonged use. The case warmed up significantly, but nothing critical. Freezes after an hour of play did not start.
However, a lengthy gaming session made it clear that in the top modern games it is better to set the average settings. Then there will definitely be no fps drawdowns, which sometimes still occur at maximum graphics settings.
Forget about sockets
Xiaomi continues to bend its line and increase the battery capacity in smartphones. And we, as consumers, can only be glad of this.
Redmi Note 9 Pro is equipped with a battery capacity of as much as 5020 mAh. For the line, this is a record figure. Thanks to such a capacious battery, the smartphone is able to work up to three days without recharging in a gentle mode.
With normal use, the charge lasts for two days. I found this out in practice. I went with the Note 9 Pro for a week, charging the smartphone once a day and a half during the study and tests, and once every two days the rest of the time.
According to statistics from a smartphone, the time of active operation of the screen on a full charge is more than eight hours.
But in what the device was a little upset, it is in terms of charging power. The smartphone supports fast charging with a power of 18 watts. This is clearly not enough for such a capacious battery. Suffice it to say that it takes more than 130 minutes to fully charge a smartphone.
In the afternoon – super, at night – not very
It’s good to become the owner of Redmi Note 9 Pro now, almost a month after the release of the smartphone. The reason is that the developers fixed all the software jambs, of which there were many. The main flaw was with the rear camera of the smartphone. She could shoot a frank little soap.
Fortunately, the soap was removed in the operatively subsequent release of Note 9 Pro updates. Now you can shoot normally on a smartphone, as I have personally seen repeatedly.
What do you have to shoot? The smartphone has a system of four rear cameras:
- 64-megapixel wide-angle with f / 1.9 aperture and adaptive autofocus system,
- 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle (119˚) with f / 2.2 aperture,
- 5-megapixel macro camera with f / 2.4 aperture,
- 2-megapixel camera for determining depth with f / 2.4 aperture.
Thanks to the abundance of cameras, the smartphone supports a variety of shooting modes. With a wide or ultra-wide-angle, portrait shooting with or without lighting, macro shooting from a distance of up to two centimeters, night shooting, and other formats. In general, there is something to play with.
Fortunately, they shoot cameras perfectly, at least for the category of mid-budget smartphones. Images on Redmi Note 9 are highly detailed and sharp with almost the entire frame. The exception is darkened places where even in excellent natural light there is a lack of sharpness.
The same applies to shoot in sub-optimal light conditions. However, in the evening and at night, you should definitely try to shoot with the night mode turned on. He will raise the detail by increasing exposure but gently muffle the noise. As a result, in many cases a good evening or night shot will be obtained, which will not be embarrassing to publish on social networks or simply to keep it as a keepsake.
The main thing when working with the night shooting mode is to remember that good photos will not always be obtained. If it’s moral to be prepared for this, then there will be no disappointments from low-quality images.
NFC in place
Redmi Note 9 received a set of wireless connections that have become commonplace for current Xiaomi smartphones. The novelty supports Wi-Fi 5 (802.11), Bluetooth 5.0, has an infrared port for controlling TVs and, of course, is equipped with an NFC module for wireless shopping.
For the Redmi Note Pro line, NFC is nothing new – it appeared in the previous Redmi Note 8 Pro. Nevertheless, there are always a lot of questions about the presence of NFC in Xiaomi smartphones, so I’ll clarify. Perform contactless payments with the new “laptop” will work without problems – do not worry.
The result. Should I buy a Redmi Note 9?
Redmi Note 9 is an excellent and logical continuation of the line. Xiaomi definitely looked at the reviews for the previous model and did another work on the bugs. As a result, the Snapdragon processor returned to Redmi Note 9, the design of the back cover changed, the fingerprint scanner was improved, there was more RAM and all other improvements appeared. Separately, it is worth highlighting the battery with increased capacity. Xiaomi does not save on a battery, which is great for fans of smartphone companies.
The new Redmi Note 9 is primarily Note. Therefore, the target audience of the smartphone has not changed compared to previous models. The device will be an ideal purchase for everyone who is looking for a smartphone close to the flagship but does not want to give huge money for a smartphone.
Redmi Note 9 tries to mow under the flagships not only the characteristics and design, but also the materials used. A reinforced glass case with a strong metal frame makes the smartphone expensive to the touch. Cheapness, as is the case with the same Redmi Note 9 without the Pro prefix with a plastic case, is not at all felt.
To abandon Redmi Note 9 is, perhaps, only very demanding on the quality of mobile photography and video. Despite the fact that the smartphone has four cameras and support for a variety of shooting modes, the quality often leaves much to be desired. An exception is shooting in conditions with excellent natural light. So, taking a smartphone on a trip to the resort (someday they will still be allowed), you will return from a ton of juicy daytime shots.
If you need mobile photography relatively rarely, then Redmi Note 9 is a great choice for a mid-budget smartphone for the whole of 2020.