Redmi Note 6 Pro review: Phone with best camera performance under Rs 20,000

first_imgXiaomi’s Note series phones have always been popular since the company launched the Redmi Note 3 in 2016. They are priced well, offer fantastic hardware for their price, and are in general reliable and versatile phones. This is probably the reason why the Redmi Note 5 Pro (review) remains, according to market research firm IDC, the best selling smartphone under Rs 20,000. Xiaomi is now hoping that next quarter when this IDC report comes out, the name it will see on the top of the list will be that of the Redmi Note 6 Pro, a phone launched on November 22 at a price of Rs 13,999. These hopes are based on something that is substantial, because, as you will see in this Redmi Note 6 Pro review, the new Note from Xiaomi is formidable.The Redmi Note 6 Pro comes in two variants: the base model with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage for Rs 13,999 and the top model with 6GB RAM and 64GB storage for Rs 15,999. Both will be on sale today, that is November 23, in a flash sale on Flipkart,, Mi Home store at 12 noon. The phone comes in four colour options, including Red, Blue, Black, and Rose Gold. Xiaomi has announced a special price for the Redmi Note 6 Pro for today’s, that is November 23, sale. During the first sale, the 4GB model of the phone will be available for Rs 12,999, while the 6GB RAM variant will sell for Rs 14,999. On top of the Rs 1,000 discount, Xiaomi has also partnered with HDFC Bank to offer an additional Rs 500 off.advertisementOver here at India Today Tech, I am reviewing the Black variant of the Redmi Note 6 Pro. In many aspects, the Redmi Note 6 Pro is similar to the Redmi Note 5 Pro, but primarily the camera is one area where I found the big difference. The Redmi Note 6 Pro is a phone worth its price for its camera alone.Redmi Note 6 Pro quick lookBefore going into sharing my experience with the Redmi Note 6 Pro, here are some of the quick facts you should know about the phone:– It comes with four cameras in total: two on the front and two on the back.– The Redmi Note 6 Pro is the first Xiaomi Note phone in India with a notched display.– The phone comes with Dual VoLTE support– The phone runs MIUI 10 based on Android 8.1 Oreo out-of-the-box.– The Redmi Note 6 Pro is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 636, and comes with 4000mAh battery.– The screen size of the Redmi Note 6 is bigger than the display in the Redmi Note 5 Pro. The phone comes with a 6.2-inch FullHD+ display.Polished Redmi Note 5 ProTo talk about the Redmi Note 6 Pro, I need to start with the Note 5 Pro. This is because if you look at the specs of the Redmi Note 6 Pro, you won’t see many noticeable upgrades apart from some changes here and there. The only major upgrade that Xiaomi has brought to the new Note is in the camera and display.If both the Redmi Note 5 Pro and the Note 6 Pro are kept together, you will find it difficult to tell them apart. The design is almost exactly the same for these two phones. Both sport dual rear cameras on the back, which are placed in a vertical fashion. Next to the cameras, sits the rear mounted round fingerprint sensor. It is fairly quick at unlocking phone, although I feel the face unlock system — it uses the front camera — is faster. The Redmi Note 6 Pro is a well-built and neatly designed phone. The smartphone sports an arc design on the back and has a brushed metallic finish, which makes the phone feel extremely sturdy and premium. Although the design of the new Redmi Note phone is similar to its predecessor, one aspect that differentiates the “Naya Note” from the “Purana Note” is the P2i hydrophobic nano-coating. Xiaomi claims that the P2i hydrophobic nano-coating is bonded to the surface of the phone at a molecular level and provides a high level of water resistance and protection, although this is not a waterproof phone certified with some IP rating.From the front, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 6 Pro looks different compared to its predecessor. The phone comes with a notch above the display. This notch houses two selfie cameras, some sensors and earpiece. The notch is pretty wide, but doesn’t look ugly or out of place like the one in the Pixel 3 XL. The bezels around the screen in this phone are thinner, which combined the bigger size of the display makes watching videos on the Note 6 Pro fun.advertisementBigger and brighter displaySo, watching videos on the Note 6 Pro is fun. What else? Compared to the Redmi Note 5 Pro screen, the display of the Redmi Note 6 Pro is bigger and brighter. This screen measures 6.26-inch and comes with FullHD+ resolution of 2280 x 1080 pixels. The screen is protected by a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass that has 2.5D curved corners for added protection from scratches.If both the Redmi Note 5 Pro and the Note 6 Pro are kept together, you will find it difficult to tell them apart.With the 500-nit maximum brightness and 1500:1 contrast ratio, the Redmi Note 6 Pro appears to be pretty bright in both inside a room and outside under the blazing sun. Indoors, if you keep the brightness of the Note 6 Pro screen between 40 to 50 per cent, it is enough for you to enjoy watching an episode or two of the latest Netflix blockbuster. Outdoor too, the brightness is good enough to read an email or browse web although in direct sun you may need to crank the brightness around 80 per cent or more.Best camera in a Redmi NoteCamera is the main area where Xiaomi has pulled out all stops in the Redmi Note 6 Pro, particularly when you consider that this is a phone with price tag of Rs 13,999. With this phone, Xiaomi for the first time brings dual camera setup in a Redmi phone not just in the back, but also on the front. After using the Note 6 Pro for nearly a week, I can say that the Xiaomi phone does a great job here. I’m absolutely in love with the pictures that the phone clicks, especially the selfies.First the camera hardware: The Redmi Note 6 Pro comes with a 12MP + 5MP camera configuration on the rear panel. One of the special features of the phone is its dual-pixel autofocus, which according to Xiaomi helps the Note 6 Pro get focus in low light quickly. The primary camera uses a F1.9 lens, which is shaper and wider than the F2.2 lens in Note 5 Pro. The secondary 5-megapixel sensor is used to calculate details like depth. The rear camera supports features like AI scene detection, AI adjustable bokehs, light trails photography, studio lighting and more. On the front, the Redmi Note 6 Pro comes with a 20MP main camera and 2-megapixel secondary sensor.IMAGE SAMPLESThe rear camera of the Redmi Note 6 Pro captures minute details of a subject in the image. And it does so without messing up colours, which too turn out to be vibrant and punchy in images shot with this phone. The phone is capable of clicking great photos in both low light and good light. In low light particularly, I like that images shot with the Redmi Note 6 Pro don’t have too much of colour noise or grain, which is good.The Redmi Note 6 Pro also clicks neat bokeh shot — portrait photos with background properly blurred out. Though edges do look little fake in these scenes, so I suppose there is still room for improvement. Features like ‘bokeh adjustment’ and Light Trails, which lets users change the background in portrait photos, are nice to have and fun to play with. Same is the case with the Studio Lighting feature, which too lets users click artistic portrait photos.advertisementThe performance of the front cameras is equally good. They click fantastic selfies in good light, and good enough portrait photos. The only area that I believe could have been better with the Redmi Note 6 Pro cameras is the way they expose the photos in bright light. Highlights — read well-lit areas — in these scenes tend to be overexposed, resulting in some parts of the photo looking washed out.Overall, I believe the camera system in the Redmi Note 6 Pro is one of the best we have ever seen in a Xiaomi phone in India. And it definitely makes the phone with the best camera performance under Rs 20,000.Performance and batteryThese are areas where the Redmi Note 6 Pro more or less offers what the Redmi Note 5 Pro does. The core hardware between these two phones is the same and even the MIUI 10 software is the same. The performance too is the same. The Redmi Note 6 Pro is a fast phone, in my use, I found that it handled almost everything that I did on it gracefully. It handles games very well and doesn’t lag at any point in time. Switching between apps happens in a blink of an eye, scrolling through Facebook and Twitter feeds is also smooth on the Redmi Note 6 Pro.The performance of the front cameras is equally good. They click fantastic selfies in good light, and good enough portrait photos.One area where I saw some lag was in the MIUI 10 animations but that was likely due to some shoddy software optimisations. The gestures weren’t as smooth as what you get on high-end phones like the iPhone XR or the OnePlus phones. But then do keep in mind that these phones are much more expensive compared to the Redmi Note 6 Pro.Photos9 Photos +SEE MORE The battery life is also similar for the two phones. The Note 6 Pro comes with a large 4000mAh battery with Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0 support. The phone easily lasts one full day of use, even if you are watching 3-hour long films or playing games for long hours. Overall, the battery of the Redmi Note 6 Pro can go on easily for about one day on a single charge, but if you aren’t a social media addict or a movie buff who watches a lot of videos on the phone for extended hours, the Redmi phone could easily go on for about one and a half days.Is it worth buying Redmi Note 6 Pro?I think this is one of the best smartphones you can buy under Rs 20,000. The fact that it costs just Rs 13,999 makes it an even better deal. It is also a phone that you should pick if you want to get the best camera performance from a smartphone under Rs 20,000.While the camera performance is the highlight of the phone, the Redmi 6 Note is also fairly good at everything else. If you don’t particularly want stock Android — in which case you should look at the Nokia 6.1 Plus and Xiaomi Mi A2 — the Note 6 Pro is an obvious choice in this price segment. With the Redmi Note 6 Pro, Xiaomi yet again hits the bulls-eye in the mainstream phone market.Redmi Note 6 Pro review8/10ProsClicks great picturesGood displayLong battery lifeConsOld designCore hardware not changedlast_img read more