Review of the smartphone Redmi Note 7: the best camera and display for modest money

The company Xiaomi develops so many different activities that fit to hold a competition for knowledge

all its subsidiary brands. In January 2019, another one was added to them - Redmi. Previously, it was the name of the line of inexpensive smartphones Xiaomi, now it is an independent trademark under which models of the lower and middle price categories will be produced. Anything more expensive will now be released under the Mi brand. As amended gg visited Note 7 - one of the first smartphones with the Redmi logo.

Appearance, design, ergonomics

We must pay tribute to the designers of the company - the phone is damn beautiful. Photos do not convey this game of light and color on the glass of Gorilla Glass 5 and the lacquered plastic frame of the case.


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The layout of the case is standard - the buttons on the right,multimedia speaker at the bottom, next to the microphone and USB-C port. In addition to the audio output and the second microphone, there is an infrared port on the upper edge of the case - you can control a TV, audio system or air conditioner instead of their standard remote control from a smartphone.


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Card tray, unfortunately, combined: 2 nanoSIM or nanoSIM + microSD.


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On the display on top of the "gorilla" is already glued protectiveglass - right in the factory, accurately and neatly. It loves and carefully collects fingerprints. A front-facing camera without a flash creates a minimal “dead zone” in the notification panel and does not interfere with the normal perception of information.


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At the bottom of the front panel, right on the edge, isa tiny signaling LED, which I first took for a defect in the display or protective glass. It is monochrome (only white), unobtrusive, but noticeable, if you know where to look. It lights constantly when charging and flashes when there are unvisited events.


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On the rear panel are traditionally located scanner.fingerprint and dual camera with dual LED flash. Under the Redmi logo, just in case “by Xiaomi” is added - suddenly someone does not know.


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Equipment and functionality

The smartphone is built on the Qualcomm SDM660 chipset -These are 4 Kryo 460 cores with a frequency of up to 1.8 GHz and 4 more of them with a frequency of up to 2.2 GHz. It supports Wi-Fi ac Wave2 2 × 2 MU-MIMO, machine learning and neural networks, as well as category 12 LTE (download speeds up to 600 Mbps). This is a very powerful and functional "iron", made by 14-nanometer process technology, supplemented by 4 gigabytes of RAM and 64 GB of storage. The version of Note7 Pro (there is one), respectively, 6 and 128 GB of memory.

The MIUI 10 API is based on Android.9 Pie and familiar to fans of the brand. There is no application menu, everything is located on the desktop, folders and widgets are supported. Quick access to the main functions of the application by longtape (standard Android 9 function) is not implemented.


The phone is literally crammed with presetsapplications, most of which involve the use of Mi-account. Often they duplicate the Google tools. Here you have your own “cloud”, and your own tool for searching for a lost phone, antivirus, system optimization, cleaning garbage, acceleration of application launch, etc. It’s not a fact that all this will be used, and takes place from 64 GB of flash memory about 50 users are available to the user. In addition, very often advertising is displayed in the applications and simply in the interface. When installing new applications, they are immediately checked by the antivirus, and after checking you can immediately create a clone of the application for use with another account, if there is no such possibility in the application itself (this function is also available as a separate item in the settings menu).

From the useful can be noted a detailed forecast.AccuWeather weather, scrolling screenshots, screening, additional smartphone controls (gestures, double-tap unlocking on the display, full-screen mode), and a shortcut bar where you can add the most frequently used applications and functions home screen). Without unlocking, the switch panel and volume control are available, there is also quick access to the camera, flashlight and Mi Remote remote control. The image from the phone can be output to the TV via WiFi.

Display Note 7 presented a pleasant surprise. Measurements using a colorimeter showed that his color rendition is excellent, such results are a rarity for the price category up to $ 200. The color temperature is only slightly higher than the reference 6500 ° K, and only in the shadows it exceeds 7000 ° K.


But stated in the official specificationsThe 1500: 1 contrast ratio was not confirmed - the measured maximum and minimum brightness (415.638 cd / m2 and 0.562 cd / m2, respectively) give the contrast twice lower - 740: 1, which is also confirmed by subjective sensations - the display is not very comfortable in sunlight.

Note 7 provides several tools to adjust the color temperature and contrast:


Given the excellent factory calibration, changeSomething from these settings is not necessary, except that the mode of high contrast can be useful. When you turn it on, the image is slightly better read in the sun, but it acquires a bluish tint, that is, you should not use it constantly. You can enable automatic contrast adjustment - in this case, it changes depending on the light intensity. Color temperature can be changed manually only in this mode.

The display sensor detects up to 10 simultaneoustaps and works generally well, but often the extreme (left and right) letters on the keyboard are not pressed when you hit them closer to the edge of the display. Apparently, the sensitive area does not reach the very edge, so that there are no accidental positives. In addition to the keyboard, nowhere else is it noticeable, I think you can get used to it.

Music Note 7 reproduces perfectly. In this part, there are also additional settings, such as sound optimization for 15 different types of headphones (including for specific Xiaomi models).


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A simple FM-receiver works only with wired headphones, finds 29 Kiev radio stations. The quality of reception and playback is good.

Telephone functions Note 7 works fine, it should be notedloud, clear and detailed sounding of the interlocutor's voice (of course, in good communication conditions for both subscribers). Regularly provided for recording conversations. There is one problem with the dialer - the number entry line is initially absent and appears only after the first character is entered from the keyboard. This adds a few extra steps in case the number needs not to be dialed, but pasted from the clipboard.


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The smartphone has an infrared port to controlTV and other devices, but the proprietary application seems to be focused only on working with Xiaomi appliances. For other devices will have to download a third-party application, good, a lot of them.


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Note 7 finger scanner works flawlessly - recognizes the owner quickly and from the first time.

Photo and video

With the main camera a little incomprehensible. Considering that with the contrast we were misled, I “turned on the bore” on another occasion. Namely - the manufacturer stated (https://www.mi.com/ru/redmi-note-7/specs/) resolution of 48 MP, but the specifications of the SDM660 chipset support the camera up to 24 MP or 2x16 MP. Something does not agree here. In a note to the characteristics of Note 7, the following text is written in small text:

“* 48 MP ultra clear camera indicates the main48 megapixel camera module. The camera is capable of taking 48-megapixel and 12-megapixel pictures ... [here is a missing part of the text, which I will quote later]
* Large 1.6 micron pixels (4-in-1 Super Pixel) is a technology that allows the device's camera to combine 4 pixels into one large one with a size of 1.6 microns. ”

Let's figure it out. The camera takes pictures with a frame size of 8000x6000 pixels only in Pro mode with the “48 MP” option turned on. Without this option, as well as in all other modes, 12-megapixel photos (4000x3000 pixels) are created. Logically, the higher the resolution of the camera sensor, the higher the detail should be. In this case, the detailing should be doubled, that is, the readability of small elements of the image should improve by 2 times. I made a lot of pairs of pictures in the resolutions of 12 and 48 MP, I will give the most illustrative example. The camera was fixed at 40 centimeters from the object (10 UAH banknotes) and two pictures were taken - 12 and 48 MP - in Pro mode with manual focusing (to eliminate the effect of autofocus).

Below are three images, or rather theirfragments. The first is a screenshot of the original 12 MP image when viewed at a scale of 200%; the second is the original 48 MP image, the third is the 12 MP image, stretched to 48 MP in Photoshop without any additional processing.


As you can see, both 48-megapixel snapshots(source and interpolated from 12 MP) are almost identical - no additional details are visible on them compared to 12 MP, the text and signature of Mazepa are read in the same way. What makes me think about the banal interpolation of the picture. In favor of this version, I have other arguments (for those who want to debate, I am ready to present them in the comments). But do not rush to accuse the company of deception - in the notes to the characteristics there is another text:

“Some tests may determine the presence of onlyone mode, showing that the device is equipped with a 12-megapixel sensor. Professional support will be added later in upcoming updates. ”

Perhaps, the camera operation in 12 MP withinterpolation of images up to 48 MP is a temporary measure in anticipation of those updates, and the pixels of the matrix are combined into “4-in-1” superpixels at the level of the camera driver, therefore other applications see only 12 MP. In this case, it would be nice to test the camera again after the update.

One way or another, the camera takes great pictures.both during the day outside and at dusk, and in poor indoor lighting, which is facilitated by the aperture ratio of 1: 1.8 and the sensitivity range to ISO3200.

HDR, as for me, brightens the shadows too much, especially in low light (in the examples, first there is a picture with HDR, then without):


Phase autofocus is fast and wrongonly in classic difficult situations like trying to remove a small object in the foreground. In all shooting modes, the image is taken from the bottom of the cameras, and the top one provides auxiliary data for portrait mode with background blur. To prevent the wide-angle lens from distorting the proportions of the face, the camera recommends shooting at a distance of 2 m from the model. In this case, the background blur is not very strong, and the face takes about 1/64 of the frame area. However, after cropping, a good height or waist portrait with a resolution of 1.5–2 Mp is obtained, which can be printed at a size of 10x15 cm without loss of quality.


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In selfie mode, the background blur is completely software, since the front camera is one. The boundaries of the zone of sharpness are determined fairly accurately.


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The photo and video quality of the 13-megapixel front camera is slightly worse than that of the main one (due to the darker F2.0 lens), but very good.

AI mode (artificial intelligence) is able to recognize some objects and scenes and accordingly adjust the shooting parameters:


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Takes a photo of Redmi Note 7 like this:


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With the video is also interesting - in the officialcharacteristics and in the pre-installed camera application its maximum quality is FullHD @ 60fps, and in gCam 4K shooting is available (3840 × 2160 pixels). H.264 and H.265 codecs are supported. Two microphones record very high-quality stereo sound, and in the native application it works, and quite well, image stabilization. There are modes of slow motion video (with deterioration of quality) and “accelerated” (which is actually interval shooting, or timelapse).


So Redmi Note 7 shoots video:

FullHD, 30 fps (default mode):

FullHD, 30 fps, with and without stabilization:

FullHD, 60 fps, H.265:

4K, 30 fps:

Slow Motion:

Accelerated video (time lapse):

Performance and autonomy. Impressions of work

The iron inside Note 7 is more thanenough for any day-to-day operations with a smartphone - surfing the web, streaming video and audio, GPS navigation, etc. It is possible that in some of the most demanding games or applications it will turn out to be rather weak, but I personally did not feel the lack of performance. Here are the test results for those who need a more objective assessment:


On the stability of the work there are comments. So, the camera sometimes does not have autofocus in Pro mode, although the focus is set to Auto. Also, several times when trying to take a photo in 48 megapixel mode, the camera hung up, and the display began to flicker (it was treated by locking and unlocking the screen). The application for Strava athletes refused to work normally - the recording of the tracks was spontaneously interrupted, the training was not saved. And literally on the last day before the review, the phone began to somehow show very inaccurate position when navigating Google Maps. Testing with the help of GPS Test showed a strange result - the smartphone sees 30-40 satellites, but it can not accurately determine the position (No Fix). Perhaps this is solved by editing or replacing any GPS configuration file, but this is the way for geeks, not every user will want to do this.


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4000 mAh battery charge was enough for mefor almost two days, sometimes at the end of the second day I had to recharge the phone to ensure that it was enough to go home. Ultra-economy mode, in which the phone reduces the frequency of the processor and disables all functions except calls and SMS, Note 7 does not have. There is a normal economy mode, in which the phone offers to switch when less than 20% of the charge remains. It supports fast charging Qualcomm Quick Charge 4, but failed to check its work - the smartphone came to the test without accessories.

In the dry residue

Redmi Note 7 is beautiful, fast, he has greatthe camera (even without the controversial 48 MP), good musical ability, a perfectly calibrated display and a capacious battery. Unfortunately (and this is typical of many Chinese phones), for stable and trouble-free operation, you will have to wait for the firmware update to fix the problems described above. And for this money (5555 UAH at the time of the publication of the review) I would already like to have NFC in it.

The closest competitors are the Samsung M20, whichThere is NFC, but I liked the camera less, and ASUS ZenFone Max Pro M1 with less memory (3/32 GB), but a more capacious battery (5000 mAh). Would I buy myself a Note 7? More likely not, than yes, because stability of work is important for me. I hope in the following firmware all the flaws will be fixed, but the role of a beta tester does not appeal to me.

2 reasons to buy Redmi Note 7

  • You need a fast phone flagship appearance, but for a modest amount;
  • You need a good camera on your phone.

2 reasons not to buy Redmi Note 7

  • you need a phone “out of the box” that works as expected and does not require “easy file handling”;
  • You want to use the Google Pay service.

Technical characteristics of Redmi Note 7

Display
IPS LCD 6.3 ″, 2340x1080, 409 ppi, aspect ratio 19.5: 9

Dimensions and weight
159x75x8 mm, 186 g

CPU
Qualcomm SDM660 Snapdragon 660 (14 nm), 8 Kryo 260 cores (4 2.2 GHz cores + 4 1.8 GHz cores), Adreno 512 graphics

Memory
32/64/128 GB, RAM 3/4 GB + microSD up to 256 GB (hybrid connector)

Camera

Primary: 48 MP, f / 1.8, 1/2 ″, 0.8µm, PDAF + 5 MP, f / 2.4, depth sensor

Front: 13 MP, f / 2.2, 1.25µm, HDR, 1080p @ 30fps

Interface
USB Type-C

Wireless technology
Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac (2.4 and 5 GHz), Bluetooth 5.0

Battery
fixed, lithium-polymer, 4000 mAh, 9V / 2A 18 W (Quick Charge 4)

operating system
Android 9.0 (Pie) with a proprietary shell MIUI 10

SIM card
2 x nanoSIM

The fingerprint scanner
on the back

Xiaomi Redmi Note 7

Beautiful smartphone with impressive display and great camera.

Redmi Note 7 was the first Xiaomi smartphone,released under the independent brand Redmi. The large screen, the productive "iron", high-quality coverage in front and behind, a great camera for such a price and a good battery - all with it. But according to the good old Chinese tradition, the company ignored the popularity of Google Pay with us and did not add an NFC chip.

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potential bestseller