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Xiaomi had been lacklustre in a mid range for quite a few months now. Having handed over the mid range baton to the Xiaomi Mi4i the company faced a lot of criticism - especially for calling a heating bar with Snapdragon 615 inside as a 'Flagship for India'. Even their Redmi Note's popularity had faded away. With the entry of Yu Yureka and Lenovo K3 Note, Xiaomi was simply losing out in the mid-range. Many were blaming the company's downfall in the mid range segment for breaking their partnership with Mediatek.
But with a company like Xiaomi you never know when they will get back to business. And here they are with their budget Redmi Note 2 Prime which simply boasts of Flagship specs! Priced at just 999 Yuan (Rs. 10,000 approx) the device boasts some impeccable specs. But can it match up with the Galaxy Note 5 launched yesterday? Let's find out.
Redmi Note 2 used a Mediatek MT6795T with eight Cortex cores clocked at 2.2GHz. This is in fact the same SoC as found in the Flagship Meizu MX5 and the HTC One M9+. Both these device cost upwards of Rs 25,000 in India. So you can well and truly understand why the Redmi Note 2 can be designated as a Flagship. The SoC generates a score of around 54,000 in Antutu Benchmark 5.7.1 which is very close to the one recorded by the Exynos 7420 in the Note5. The GPU on both the devices are nearly similar in performance. Redmi Note 2 uses a PowerVR G6200 GPU while the Mali T760 MP8 GPU is bundled inside the Exynos 7420.
With the Sunlight display technology on board Redmi Note 2 will provide a better reading conditions especially in dimly lit rooms. Plus do expect a improved sunlight legitimacy - the last Sunlight display that Gizbot testes was the Mi4i and we were highly impressed with it. It's true that Super AMOLED display are no slouch either.But when you can get this display at forty to fifty thousand lower then why go for the Note5
Xiaomi has beefed up the optics in the Redmi Note 2. In fact it is one of the cheapest devices to sport a PDAF (Phase Detection Autofocus Sensor) - this is something which we are used to seeing in hog end devices. Going by Xiaomi track record we are quite sure that they have made suitable tweaks to the software too, to use the high end hardware. So expect very low focusing times. The images though would be better on the Note5 as a whole - after all it houses the same optics as seen in the Galaxy S6.
Samsung has somewhat skimped on the battery inside the Note5. Most were expecting something around 4100mAh but sadly 'Samsung has bundled in just 3000mAh. With such a powerful hardware and a Quad HD display the battery may not last as long as it does in the Redmi Note 2. The Redmi phablet houses a 3060mAh battery. This may be slightly larger than the one inside Note5 but do note that Redmi Note 2 a Full HD display.
MIUI 7 is much intuitive and usable than the TouchWiz. With utilitarian features like the Permissions Manager, Security, Themes store presen, MIUI 7 beats the Samsung's Custom UI hands down. A 'Samsung fan boy might now complain stating the fact that MIUI7 is a big RAM hogger. But dear, TouchWiz is no light UI either!
Despite the fact that Redmi Note features the Sunlight display technology, it is inferior to the Note5 when it comes to sharpness of the panel. The Note5 uses a Quad HD (2560x1440) in comparison to the Full HD panel in Note2.
The Galaxy Note5 features 4GB of RAM in comparison to the standard 2GB present in the Redmi Note 2. One can hardly complain about the RAM comparing the price. But against the Note5 it surely loses hands down.
The Note5 comes with a metal to the sides and a glass at the back. This is the same design language as seen on the Galaxy S6 series. It feels premium and good to hold.Further the back is curved towards the sides, thereby improving grip. The mid range Redmi Note 2 on the other hand comes in an all plastic body.
Despite featuring a powerhouse SoC and a PDAF sensor 13MP rear camera, the device is incapable of shooting 4K DCI videos. It can only shoot 1080p 30fps videos. The processor though support 4K video recording. So if the camera sensor is capable of shooting Quad HD videos, a work around may be on cards.
This is something that will be highly missed in the device. Fingerprint sensor has become a part of every other mid range Chinese device now days. Hence it's surprising to see it absent int the Redmi Note 2.
Xiaomi's new mid range offering might not be the best Flagship device out there - it isn't destined to do so. It comes with it's own set of quirks like a polycarbonate body, 2GB of RAM and a Full HD display.
But at Rs 10,000 one can hardly expect anything better than
what Redmi Note 2 offer. So if you are on the look out for a phablet with beefy internals which will also be light on your pocket, then Redmi Note 2 should be your obvious choice. Hopefully you will be able to bear with the absence of the S-Pen functionality of the Note5. After all you are saving about Rs 45,000 - so better not complain!