- Dec 21, 2018
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In terms of design and built quality both of these devices are very eye-pleasing, each having its own unique look. The Redmi Note 7 Pro impresses with its glossy gradient color finish (Aura Design) which results in a more premium look and feel compared to the Realme 3 Pro which has a polycarbonate back that looks nice due to its S-shape pattern (3D Speedway Design). Here is where the Redmi Note 7 Pro has the upper hand due to its Gorilla Glass 5 back which has a better protection against scratches than the polycarbonate back found on the Realme 3 Pro. Because of the way it's built the former feels better in hand and more solid than the latter, giving the impression of a true flagship experience. Although it remains only a matter of preference as far as design is concerned, still the Redmi Note 7 Pro is the one which offers a more premium aspect. The buttons feedback is quite good on both devices. They have a fair amount of "click" to them and behave as expected. The Redmi Note 7 Pro is equipped with splash protection thanks to the P2i nano-coating, while the Realme 3 Pro claims to have some dust and splash protection as well, although we have no information about its rating since it has not yet been disclosed.
Both devices have very reliable fingerprint scanners on the back which are quite consistent and hardly ever fail. And despite the hype around UD fingerprint scanners, it's actually a plus to have a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner on these devices since they are much more reliable and much faster than the former ones, and there is also the possibility of applying a tempered glass while having the ability to use the fingerprint scanner in the same time, which is something that cannot be achieved with UD fingerprint scanners, although there are some tempered glass manufacturers which are already developing a type of glass that also works with in-display fingerprint scanners, but the price will be quite high and we aren't sure about their reliability either. It's a shame that the trustworthy rear-mounted fingerprint scanners are slowly being replaced with UD fingerprint scanners, but I digress...
Moving to the display quality both devices have very decent panels with Gorilla Glass 5 protection, good viewing angles, color accuracy, crisp image quality and same size. But due to the different calibration mode the media viewing experience and sunlight visibility is slightly better on the Redmi Note 7 Pro. And as far as the notch is concerned, the dot-notch on the Redmi Note 7 Pro and dewdrop-notch on the Realme 3 Pro look equally nice with minimal intrusion. On the other hand the Realme 3 Pro has thinner bezels compared to the Redmi Note 7 Pro giving a better screen-to-ratio, however the downside of this is the fact that it is more prone to accidental touches on the sides. Also there are no screen-bleeding issues to worry about in both cases.
In the chipset department both devices are equipped with the very best hardware currently found in mid-range smartphones, and the performance is so good that it's literally no different from a true flagship performance as far as overall experience is concerned when it comes to basic tasks like calling, messaging, browsing and so forth. The Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with the Snapdragon 675 SoC which is equipped with the newer and more powerful Kryo 460 CPU which gives a higher overall score in benchmarks, and the Adreno 612 GPU which performs very well in most situations and even in more demanding scenarios such as heavy games which require more power, while the Realme 3 Pro comes with the Snapdragon 710 SoC which is equipped with the older Kryo 360 CPU, but with the more powerful Adreno 616 GPU which offers a better gaming performance. However, as far as day-to-day experience is concerned both of the devices perform more or less the same. The Snapdragon 675 SoC is built on the 11nm-FinFET technology while the Snapdragon 710 SoC is built on the 10nm-FinFET technology which in theory should give a slightly better power efficiency. But since the Kryo 360 CPU (2x2.2 GHz/Gold Cores) on the Realme 3 Pro is clocked slightly higher than the Kryo 460 CPU (2x2.0 GHz/Gold Cores) on the Redmi Note 7 Pro, both of the devices will have more or less the same power efficiency as the battery capacity (4000 mAh for the RN7Pro and 4045 mAh for the RM3Pro) is the same for the most part with negligible differences. The Snapdragon 675 SoC on the Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with the upgraded Quick Charge 4+ technology, while the Snapdragon 710 SoC on the Realme 3 Pro comes with the standard Quick Charge 4 technology. Something to keep in mind as well. The China 6GB/128GB variant of the Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with the 18W Quick Charge 3.0 charger in the box (1h and 45m charging time from 0-100%), while the Indian 4GB/64GB variant comes with the standard 10W charger in the box. On the other hand the Realme 3 Pro comes with the VOOC Flash Charge 3.0 charger in the box (1h and 20m charging time from 0-100%) which performs really well ensuring a significantly faster charging time than you would normally get for a device in this price segment. However the Redmi Note 7 Pro is equipped with a USB type-C charging port, while the Realme 3 Pro sticks with the old micro-USB charging port which is a sure minus.
Moving on to the camera department, the Redmi Note 7 Pro blows the competition away by showing its amazing photography capabilities provided by the main Sony IMX586 sensor which is found on flagships like MI 9, OnePlus 7 Pro, Oppo Reno 10x Zoom and Meizu 16s. The 48MP 1/2" large camera sensor ensures a great low-light performance thanks to the Quad-Bayer array with its pixel-binning technology which increases the overall exposure, sharpness, detail, color accuracy and dynamic range. The Realme 3 Pro is equipped with the Sony IMX519 sensor which is found on flagships like Lenovo Z5 Pro GT, OnePlus 6T and Oppo Find X. Although its 16MP main camera sensor is capable of clicking very good photos, it falls short when it comes to low-light performance due to its smaller 1/2.6" sensor, but given the right amount of light it manages to capture decent photos by using Nightscape. A more bothersome issue however is the image processing implementation provided by Realme. Because of it photos and videos end up looking very unrealistic and oversaturated with a predominant greenish tint. It very much looks like some sort of filters are applied by default when clicking photos in the same manner you would apply filters in post-processing. And the Chroma Boost mode exaggerates the oversaturation even further which completely distorts the color accuracy of the photos. I suspect Realme is trying to make up for the loss of dynamic range by doing so, yet the end result is nowhere near as you get with the pixel-binning technology provided by the Sony IMX586 sensor which captures photos with a much more natural look thanks to Xiaomi's better image processing implementation. As for the 64MP Ultra HD Mode on the Realme 3 Pro is just a gimmick achieved by pixel interpolation with added oversharpening, but gives good results nonetheless during daytime. Whereas the Redmi Note 7 Pro natively supports 48MP snapshots which can be captured by using the PRO mode. The 960fps Super Slo-Mo Video on the Realme 3 Pro is also a software gimmick since the Snapdragon 710 chipset is not natively equipped with such a feature, but it's nice to have it anyway. However overall video quality is better on the Redmi Note 7 Pro which provides more clarity, color accuracy, dynamic range and much better EIS. AI Scene Detection seems to work very well on both devices, while the HDR mode seems to be better on the Realme 3 Pro in some cases. But in most scenarios the Redmi Note 7 Pro manages to bring back detail from shadows without blowing up the highlights. However the portrait mode is absolutely stellar on the Redmi Note 7 Pro, and with the help of *no-support-for-this-app-on-this-forum* you could achieve astonishing results which are on par with many high-end cameras. Although the edge detection could be better.
Something important to note here is the upgraded Spectra 250L ISP present in the Snapdragon 675 which provides even better image processing compared to the standard Spectra 250 ISP present in the Snapdragon 710. As far as the secondary depth sensors are concerned, they have more or less the same performance on both devices, but due to the different image processing on the Realme 3 Pro the photos captured with this device end up having more background blur. On the other hand the Redmi Note 7 Pro has a Dual-LED flash, whereas the Realme 3 Pro has a Single-LED flash.
Speaking of low-light photography, here is where the Redmi Note 7 Pro excels by achieving amazing results using the manual long-exposure found in the PRO mode. I will share a SOOC photograph below captured by Nilesh Jaybhaye (XDA Forums) with the Redmi Note 7 Pro which shows the true potential of the Sony IMX586 sensor.
Exposure time: 16s
Aperture Value: 1.67 EV
Focal length: 4.7mm
Image size: 4000x3000 pixels
This is absolutely incredible! It shows just how far smartphone photography has evolved. Normally such a shot could only be achieved with a professional high-end camera, and the fact that you can now obtain such amazing results with a mid-range device such as the Redmi Note 7 Pro is nothing short of phenomenal! Great value for money? A resounding YES!
As for the night-mode implementation I must say I'm actually surprised... When there's enough light it performs even better than *no-support-for-this-app-on-this-forum*'s night-sight in terms of highlights conservation, sharpness and overall exposure. However, it seems all this is achieved at the expense of detail loss which can be clearly seen once you zoom into the photo. And here is where *no-support-for-this-app-on-this-forum*'s night-sight excels by preserving more detail, but on the other hand failing to impress when it comes to highlights conservation (street lights and luminous signboards are completely blown out), while sharpness and overall exposure fall short as well. MIUI's night-mode implementation is one of the best I've seen so far. It's almost on par with Huawei's night-mode processing, but still there is room for improvement when it comes to detail preservation. The Sony IMX586 sensor has a lot of potential and with the proper night-mode implementation it can do much better than this. But *no-support-for-this-app-on-this-forum*'s night-sight is absolutely stellar when it comes to extreme low-light situations.
I would like to see Xiaomi work harder towards polishing a more refined night-mode implementation. The one developed by Realme isn't bad either, and in some situations photos shot with Nightscape manage to preserve even more detail than the photos shot with Xiaomi's night-mode.
Now coming to the front-facing camera, both devices perform very well during daylight. The 13MP Omnivision sensor on the Redmi Note 7 Pro can achieve good results given the right amount of light, but struggles in poorly lit scenarios where it disappoints. Here is where the 25MP sensor on the Realme 3 Pro excels and manages to give amazing low-light results putting the Redmi Note 7 Pro to shame. Because of this the face-unlock is much more reliable and performs better than the one found on the Redmi Note 7 Pro. But Xiaomi has already promised to bring improvements in this department so it remains a work in progress.
The Redmi Note 7 Pro is equipped with an IR blaster which is not present on the Realme 3 Pro. However the latter is equipped with a newer X15 LTE modem providing faster download speeds up to 800 Mbps, while the X12 LTE modem found on the Redmi Note 7 Pro provides download speeds up to 600 Mbps. The Realme 3 Pro is also lighter than the Redmi Note 7 Pro, the former weighing 172 g, while the latter weighing 186 g. But the weight distribution on the Redmi Note 7 Pro is done very well and only adds to the solid feel of the device. The Redmi Note 7 Pro scores another point with its useful LED notification light which is absent on the Realme 3 Pro. However the Realme 3 Pro has a better SIM-slot with the ability to use two nano-SIM cards and a MicroSD card at the same time, whereas the Redmi Note 7 Pro has a hybrid SIM-slot. Both devices have an FM Radio. The speaker found on the Realme 3 Pro is louder, however the audio quality on the Redmi Note 7 Pro is much better, with a more clear, crisp sound and punchy bass. And there is no distortion present at maximum volume. It performs surprisingly well for a mid-range device and offers a great audio playback experience. The output coming from the 3.5mm jack port also seems to be better on the Redmi Note 7 Pro, delivering a more balanced and rich sound than the Realme 3 Pro.
As for the OS department it remains a matter of personal preference, although MIUI is much more polished and feature-packed than Color OS and it also benefits from a larger developer community with more support. This being said, both the Redmi Note 7 Pro and the Realme 3 Pro perform exceptionally well with no bothersome lags or unexpected crashes.
Realme 3 Pro has managed to put up quite a fight and it definitely deserves your full attention and appreciation. But did it succeed in dethroning the Redmi Note 7 Pro? Not at all! The king still reigns supreme! Xiaomi has nothing to worry about, but the company should definitely step up the game in the software department.
If you are aiming for a better gaming experience go for the Realme 3 Pro.
But for everything else the Redmi Note 7 Pro remains the best option out of the two, especially if you are searching for the best smartphone camera money can buy. This is the best mid-range option for photography enthusiasts!