The Redmi Note 8 Pro represents the most top-end of the Redmi Note 8 series, although there’s not too much in common between the phones beyond the user interface. And despite being more advanced than a few other Redmi phones, the Note 8 Pro is still decidedly affordable. The Redmi Note 8 Pro has a collection of features you wouldn’t expect in a phone this affordable – there’s a 64MP main camera with three other snappers, a large Full HD+ display, a big battery, and a decent chipset. So the phone has plenty of aspects you wouldn’t expect given its price tag, but does that mean there’s a catch? Read the Redmi Note 8 Pro review here.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro Review
1. Redmi Note 8 Pro Review: Price and Availability
The Redmi Note 8 Pro is available online, via Mi.com, Amazon or certain phone retailers depending on your region.
You can pick the phone up for $399 / £229 (roughly AU$600) if you want 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, but if you want to downgrade the storage to 64GB it will cost you $349 / £209 (around AU$500).
The cost in both cases is a lot higher in the US, so it’s likely you’re paying for import costs too. In the UK, though, it’s a pretty affordable price.
2. Design and Display
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro looks surprisingly like the the Realme X2 Pro, so if you’ve seen that phone you’ve basically seen this one. It’s a big, fairly heavy phone, that’s also pretty thick.
On the back there’s a vertical camera bump in the top center, one which also houses a fingerprint sensor (which looks like one of the lenses at first glance). There’s also another lens to the side. A volume rocker and power button sit on the right-hand edge of the device, and on the bottom there’s a USB-C port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
This back is glass, which is fairly rare at this price tag where most phones have plastic rears.
The Redmi Note 8 Pro is rather chunky, thanks partly to the 6.53-inch screen, which is broken up by a teardrop notch at the top. This is a 1080 x 2340 LCD display, which is the display tech we’d expect in a phone of this price, and while the colors are perhaps a little sub-par, the reasonably high resolution partly makes up for it.
While a big display is good for viewing content, social media and more, the phone is arguably too big – we had trouble reaching the fingerprint scanner at times, so some users might find it prohibitively large.
3. Camera and battery life
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro has a 64MP main camera, which is one of its big draws, but there’s also an 8MP ultra-wide, 2MP macro and 2MP depth sensor present.
The 64MP camera takes pretty decent-looking pictures when you use it in a well-lit environment, so if you like taking pictures of natural settings, or outdoors in any way, this could be a really good tool for you. Saying that, the pixel size is pretty small, so low-light shooting (and night mode) takes snaps that are quite noisy.
The ultra-wide snapper takes pictures that are… well, very wide, as the name suggests. Pictures look reasonable, but there does seem to be a little distortion at the edges of images, more than perhaps in other handsets which have distortion-cancelling software.
As you can expect from 2MP sensors, the macro and depth-sensing cameras don’t seem super useful. Macro pictures are pretty low-res, although they are fairly bright, and we didn’t notice the depth sensor having an impact on picture quality when we shot with or without it (the latter of which was achieved by putting a finger in the way).
On the front there’s a 20MP selfie camera, which is a pretty high-res snapper for a budget phone, and we did think the pictures taken on this looked quite good. If you’re a prolific selfie taker, this could be a decent phone for you if you’re on a budget.
The battery in the Redmi Note 8 Pro is 4,500mAh, which is a good size, but then lots of budget phones have big batteries.
We didn’t test the Note 8 Pro enough to draw a final verdict on the battery life, but our initial impression is that it’s quite good. We’d expect the phone to last at least a day from a full battery, perhaps even getting you part way through the second day before you need to power it up again.
Speaking of which, the Redmi Note 8 Pro supports 18W fast charging, which is roughly average for a phone at this price, and while charging it didn’t take too long, it wasn’t lightning-fast either.