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Realme 8 Review: Worthy Successor With A Super AMOLED Display
Realme is one of those brands which are focused on upgrading its affordable and premium mid-range smartphone portfolio. The brand has already announced several 5G-enabled mid-range smartphones with cheap price labels in India. With the Realme 8 series launch yesterday, the brand has added two more devices to this product portfolio - the Realme 8 and the Realme 8 Pro.
- High-resolution Super AMOLED display with FHD+ resolution
- 64MP quad-cameras for imaging
- 30W fast charging supported 5,000 mAh battery
- Game-centric Snapdragon 720G chipset comes void of 5G network connectivity
- FHD+ resolution but standard 60Hz refresh rate
Like its older sibling, the Realme 8 has some premium-grade features that include a Super AMOLED display, a quad-lens module with a 64MP primary camera, and a 30W fast charging seen on the Narzo 30 Pro as well. This vanilla model comes at an asking price of Rs. 14,999. The top-most variant with 8GB RAM will cost you Rs. 16,999. So, another sub Rs. 20,000 price bucket offering by Realme. How well it justifies its price tag? Let's find out in this review?
Realme 8 Review: Design
Realme has changes the design language of both the Realme 8 and the Realme 8 Pro compared to their predecessors. However, they both are identical in a lot of ways. The standard Realme 8 also has a gradient back panel, but unlike the matte texture on the Pro model, this one has a plain surface.
The Cyber Silver color option we received reflects rainbow colors when light rays fall on its surface. But the rear panel picking up fingerprints almost instantly when you touch it is a big bummer. It is a dust magnet, and you will struggle to keep the surface clean.
Using a case becomes necessary with the slippery rear surface. The Realme 8 also has a slim profile as the Pro model that undeniably adds to the premium feel. The positioning of the keys and ports is also the same as the Pro model. The volume and the power key are positioned on the left, while the left is a storehouse for the dedicated microSD card slot.
The bottom panel has the USB Type-C port sandwiched between the 3.5mm headphone jack and the speaker grille. The camera setup includes four sensors aligned in a square-array. Thanks to the slim form factor, not only do you get a comfortable hold, but also a better one-hand user experience. Though extensive gaming and other tasks still require both hands, single-hand usability is decent here.
Realme 8 Review: Display Performance
The display here is the same as the Realme 8 Pro. It is a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display that supports FHD+ resolution, 90.8 percent screen-to-body ratio, and has an aspect ratio of 20:9.
Realme is amongst those few brands which have started experimenting with an AMOLED/ sAMOLED display for their affordable devices and not just fiddling with the screen refresh rate. The upgraded display panel on the Realme 8 series delivers a good performance in all scenarios.
The screen on the Realme 8 is better than its predecessor in terms of color production and brightness levels. The panel comes with 1000 nits of peak brightness making it easy to watch videos and surf websites outdoors or under harsh sunlight. However, the screen resolution has been reduced to 60Hz compared to the 90Hz on the Realme 7.
The upgraded panel also makes space for an in-display fingerprint scanner, another welcomed feature. The display also performs well with streaming apps such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos, and YouTube. The color saturation isn't on the higher end, rather you get punchy yet balanced output that allows for an immersive viewing experience.
Realme 8 Review: Hardware And Battery Performance
Realme hasn't made any changes to the chipset from the previous generation model. The Realme 8 has the same octa-core MediaTek Helio G95 processor that drives. Power delivery on this handset is satisfactory. No issues with app launches came to notice throughout our usage.
The apps load quickly even if multiple apps are running in the background. You can select up to an 8GB RAM configuration. The higher the RAM capacity, the better would be the multitasking experience. General usage has been swift on the Realme 8 and gaming is also a decent experience. But you will notice frame drops in the highest setting of a graphic-intensive game.
This is where you will miss the higher 90Hz/120Hz screen refresh rate. Besides, no specific heat-up issue we experienced during gameplay or while charging. The Realme 8 bundles up to 128GB native storage and has a dedicated microSD card as well for storage expansion.
You will also get to use two SIM cards along with the microSD card simultaneously. The Realme 8 is a good performer with given tasks at hand. No major upgrades have been done to the battery as well. You get a 5,000 mAh unit with 30W fast charging.
The unit is capable of delivering a backup of an entire day if you are using it for occasional media playback and gaming alongside general use (calling, web surfing, etc.). The fast charger powers the device from zero to 100 percent in less than 1.5 hours. And you wouldn't probably need the charger twice a day.
Realme 8 Review: Camera Performance
The Realme 8 series is the first mid-range lineup by the brand that is equipped with a 108MP quad-camera setup. But, the 108MP sensor is limited to the Pro model only. The vanilla Realme 8 has a 64MP primary sensor accompanied by an 8MP ultra-wide-angle sensor, a 2MP depth, and a 2MP macro sensor.
Photography experience isn't much different from the previous-gen model. The rear camera combines 16MP pixel-binned shots by default for crisp output. You can always use the dedicated 64MP shooting mode if you plan on clicking an image to zoom and crop later (less pixelation while zooming in/out).
The cameras have a good dynamic range and the images have a good level of detailing all over. This is when you click images with good lighting conditions. Besides the standard video recording (up to 4K), the camera app also has a Dual video mode which combines the output from both the front and the rear camera on the same window. As in, you will be able to capture videos via both the selfie and the rear camera at the same time. Other camera app features remain standard.
The Realme 8 can record Time-lapse and Slow-motion videos and also shoot Panorama, Portrait, and HDR images. The camera app also integrates a dedicated Night Mode for low-light shots.
The low-light output isn't as promising as the daylight, it is decent enough to capture moments. The Realme 8 has a 16MP camera with an f/2.0 aperture to click selfies and to make/receive video calls. The selfie snapper clicks clear self-portraits which you would love to flaunt on social media platforms.
Realme 8 Pro: Software And Benchmark Performance
The Realme 8 comes pre-installed with the Android 11 OS. The smartphone offers a near-stock Android experience and has all the Android 11 goodies including an improved UI layout and other features. The device has the custom Realme UI 2.0 interface which allows for several customizations.
Coming to the benchmark performance, the Realme 8 turned out to be a decent performer at the PCMark, 3DMark gaming benchmark, and Geekbench benchmark platforms. The smartphone achieved 9,598 points in the PCMark Work Performance 2.0 test and 2,637 points in the Sling Shot Extreme test on 3DMark. It further logged 520 points and 1695 points in the single-core and multi-core test on Geekbench.
Realme 8 Final Verdict: Should You Wait Or Upgrade?
We already have been highlighting how Realme is taking the Indian market by storm with its affordable yet power-packed smartphones. The brand has strengthened its mid-range portfolio recently with cheap 5G smartphones.
The Realme 8 also comes as a feature-rich smartphone by the company with a lower asking price. But, it's more of a mixed bag than a worthy upgrade. The company hasn't made any major changes in the Realme 7's and the Realme 8's hardware. It's the display that is the primary upgrade for which you will be shelling out some extra bucks. It is a decent device to go for but not a compulsory upgrade if you already own the Realme 7. You can instead select the Realme 8 Pro for an improved camera and a better processor.