Realme is strengthening its game with its latest offering, the Realme X2 Pro. With a starting price of Rs. At 29,999, the Realme X2 Pro offers many of the functions that are found in more expensive flagships of the middle class, thus automatically increasing the value proposition. It is also the company's first “real” flagship and it is the first time that Realme has ventured beyond expectations. 20,000 price segment in India. So far, the company has built a reputation for manufacturing inexpensive phones. With the X2 Pro, can it convince its fan base and new potential buyers to spend so much money on its top-end offering? We tested the X2 Pro for about a week and now it's time to see if this premium smartphone has managed to do it.
Realme X2 Pro Design
We covered most of the design and usability aspects of the Realme X2 Pro in our first impressions, so we'll be brief here. Realme has finally gone beyond the polycarbonate case we've seen on his phones so far, and has an aluminum case with Gorilla Glass 5 on the front and back. As a result, the X2 Pro lies very well in the hand. Everything is put together well. The device can be a bit slippery and the back of the glass easily stains, but the included case should help with these two minor problems.
The new Neptune Blue color looks great in our opinion and helps make this phone stand out. The X2 Pro is also available as a Master Edition in the versions "Red Brick" and "Concrete". The new, striking placement of the Realme logo next to the camera module is a bold choice, but it does help to make this phone stand out from Realme's other offerings in a way. The buttons are well placed and there is a headphone jack, a USB Type-C port and a speaker on the bottom. The earphone can also be used as a second speaker for stereo sound, which is a welcome feature.
Realme phones traditionally have good screens and the same goes for the Realme X2 Pro. This phone has a 6.5-inch full HD + AMOLED display with 500 nits of sustained brightness and 1000 nits of peak brightness. The display is sharp, the viewing angles are good and the colors are well saturated. What is special, however, is that this display can be operated at 90 Hz instead of the usual 60 Hz. This higher refresh rate offers a smoother feeling when scrolling through content, whether in the Android user interface or in apps. The X2 Pro has a narrow bezel around the display (including the lower chin) and a relatively flat notch – all of this reminds us a lot of the OnePlus 7T (review).
The vertically arranged rear camera module creates a slight bump on the back of the phone, but this can be compensated for with a protective cover. The Realme X2 Pro is somewhat thicker at 8.7 mm, but the curved back tries to compensate for this. It's also pretty heavy at almost 200g, but the weight is well distributed so the phone doesn't feel too unbalanced.
The sales package of the Realme X2 Pro contains a 50 W SuperVOOC charger as well as the usual accessories such as a data cable, a SIM eject tool, a protective cover, a guarantee brochure and a quick guide. The phone comes with a pre-installed screen protector, but you don't get any headphones or a headset in the box yet.
Realme X2 Pro specifications and software
As mentioned earlier, the Realme X2 Pro is a real flagship, which means that it uses Qualcomm's top-end processor – the Snapdragon 855+ SoC. This is the same chip that was used in some recent flagships like the Asus ROG Phone 2 (Review) and the OnePlus 7T. It is a slightly revised version of the original Snapdragon 855 with higher clock speeds for the single fast CPU core and the GPU.
The Realme X2 Pro is available in India in two versions. one with 8 GB RAM and 128 GB storage at Rs. 29,999, and the second with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB storage at Rs. 33,999. We are examining the cheaper option today. Both versions use the newer UFS 3.0 storage standard. According to Realme, a new tactile linear vibration motor was used for a more differentiated haptic feedback and a steam chamber cooling system for the CPU. Other specifications include dual-band WiFi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5, support for three satellite navigation systems and all expected sensors.
The Realme X2 Pro does not have expandable memory, just like the Realme X (review). The phone can hold two nano SIMs, and dual 4G VoLTE is supported. You also get an optical fingerprint sensor on the display and customizable animations to unlock. The face release is supported and works even in low light conditions. The X2 Pro offers NFC and contactless payment options, the latter of which are of little help here in India as they are not used by services like Google Pay.
The Realme X2 Pro ships with ColorOS 6.1, which is based on Android 9. This version has some new features, such as: B. a dark mode and the digital wellbeing app from Google. The security patch for November was pre-installed on our device, which is good. The appearance of the user interface is the same as that of other new Realme phones. You get the same customization options, gestures and shortcuts, as well as the same pre-installed apps like Game Space and ORoaming. Realmes App Market tends to spam your notifications with promotions. However, this can be deactivated in the settings of the app. There are also many pre-installed third-party apps, and you can uninstall them all.
The X2 Pro is certified according to Widevine L1 DRM, which means that the streaming resolution in apps like Netflix is not restricted. Dark mode is still a "laboratory" function, but in our experience it worked well. It is activated by default for all installed apps, but can be deactivated manually if required. Dolby Atmos is also supported when audio is played through the speakers and through wired or wireless headphones.
Realme X2 Pro performance and battery life
We had no major complaints with the Realme X2 Pro for everyday use. After a while we got used to its weight and weight so it wasn't big business. We found that the display is very legible in sunlight and the loudspeakers become very loud, so that warnings can be heard well in noisy public spaces. We also had no problems with the call quality. The fingerprint sensor and face recognition worked reliably in our tests. You can use the display mode via the AMOLED control panel, but this can only be used to a limited extent, since only notifications from certain standard apps are displayed.
The phone generally ran cool, but the sides and back got quite warm while playing and even using the camera a lot. This was particularly noticeable on hot days, but we also felt it when we tested the phone in an air-conditioned office in the house. A case should dampen this effect a bit, but there is still something to keep in mind.
The stereo speakers on the Realme X2 Pro sound great. The lower one is a little louder than the earphone, but you still get a decent stereo effect. The surround effect is somewhat noticeable in videos with Dolby Atmos-encoded audio. Full HD videos and videos with higher resolution look sharp and the colors are well saturated.
ColorOS has a video enhancer called "OSIE Vision", which slightly improves brightness and contrast, so that the video looks a bit more vivid. We have already seen an option for the Realme XT, but it never really worked there. It works on the X2 Pro and can be activated for a handful of apps such as MXPlayer, TikTok and Amazon Prime Video. You can turn this effect on or off using a pull-out menu.
The powerful processor in the Realme X2 Pro enables heavy games and multitasking to be mastered. We tried heavy titles like PUBG Mobile and Call of Duty: Mobile. Games like Rayman: Adventures can also use the 90 Hz display. The phone got warm when we played, but not to an uncomfortable extent. The benchmark numbers were also pretty solid. We achieved a score of 4.59.562 in AnTuTu, while the T-Rex test in GFXbench delivered 60 fps.
The X2 Pro has a 4000 mAh battery that was reliable. On average, we can easily run for one and a half days with one battery charge. This would collapse if we tested the camera extensively or played a lot of games, and even then we could comfortably survive the whole day. In our battery loop test, the Realme X2 Pro ran a total of 14 hours and 49 minutes, with the screen set to 90 Hz.
The charging is particularly impressive. With the included SuperVOOC charger, we managed to fully charge the battery from zero in just about 31 minutes. The good news is that you are not limited to Realme's proprietary charging standard, the X2 Pro also supports Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0 and USB Power Delivery for relatively fast charging.
Realme X2 Pro cameras
The Realme X2 Pro uses the same 64 megapixel 1: 1.8 primary camera as the Realme XT, but with different companion sensors. The 2-megapixel macro camera has been replaced with a more useful 13-megapixel telephoto camera. This enables a 2x optical zoom, a 5x hybrid zoom and a 20x digital zoom. There is also an 8-megapixel wide-angle camera with an aperture of 1: 2.2 and a field of view of 115 degrees, and finally a 2-megapixel depth sensor. There is no optical stabilization for any of the cameras, but you do get electronic stabilization for video.
The camera app in ColorOS 6.1 has some new features. Nightscape now works for the selfie camera. Finally, you can adjust the level of background blur in portrait orientation. and the wide-angle camera can be used to record videos. Realme has also added an "Ultra Steady" recording mode, similar to what we saw in the Oppo Reno 2 (review), to improve stabilization.
By default, the primary sensor captures oversampled photos at 16 megapixels. In good light, our samples looked detailed. The colors were vivid and HDR did a good job of balancing the exposure of light and dark areas. Objects on the sides of the frame had a distinct grain, but objects in the focus area did not have this problem. You can shoot at full 64-megapixel resolution if you need a higher zoom level later. The portrait mode also worked well with good edge detection.
The telephoto camera captured good details and colors in daylight. The 5x hybrid zoom worked well and managed decent details in good light. Fine text and smaller objects looked a bit blurry when we really enlarged an image taken at this (5X) magnification, but it looked good as it is. When using the full 20x zoom range, the level of detail decreased significantly, but larger text and larger objects were still recognizable, so this was somewhat useful. At the highest zoom level, the camera app helped us keep the image in the viewfinder steady, but you have to be very steady to avoid motion blur.
The wide-angle camera kept the run distortion on the sides of the images to a minimum, but details and color accuracy were noticeably weaker compared to telephoto or primary camera shots. The colors looked a little paler and the objects weren't that sharp. This sensor is used when taking ultra macro photos. You need steady hands here as well, as it is difficult to take pictures from close to your subject. However, the picture quality is good if you have enough light nearby.
In low light conditions, the photos taken with the main camera looked good. There were good details, the colors were punchy and the noise was under control. Dark areas usually looked a bit blurry, but this could be fixed with the Nightscape shooting mode. This also addressed minor exposure metering problems that we noticed when shooting in automatic mode. Nightscape was most effective when there were decent light sources nearby. However, it did result in dark scenes becoming artificially bright, and the details were often worse than when shooting in automatic mode.
The wide-angle camera was understandably weaker in poor lighting conditions due to its narrow aperture of 1: 2.2. You can also use Nightscape for this sensor, which gives us more useful photos. In low light conditions, the X2 Pro does not switch to the telephoto camera when you try to zoom in, but simply uses the double or five-fold digital zoom. However, if you try to zoom 20x, the camera will switch regardless of the lighting conditions.
The 16 megapixel selfie camera wasn't too impressive. The exposure was a hit or miss when shooting against the light, and HDR was not handled very effectively. When switching to portrait mode, the camera saved 8 megapixel images, but bright areas were always blown out and edge detection was pretty poor. The details were a bit muddy in low light, but the new Nightscape mode helped improve the color accuracy and light measurement a little. The screen flash is pretty strong, but the picture quality was pretty average again.
Thanks to the powerful SoC, the Realme X2 Pro can record videos at up to 4K 60fps. The video quality was good in daylight and the image stabilization worked quite well with 4K. When Ultra Steady is activated, the view of the main camera is severely cropped and recorded at 1080p 60fps by default. The stabilization was decent again, but not great as there was still a slight jerk. Video recordings with the wide-angle camera had decent details and were also stabilized.
Slow motion videos are available at 480 fps and 960 fps, in addition to the standard 240 fps. Videos with a higher frame rate were recorded at 720p, so the picture quality was quite average. The phone can only record short series at 960 fps.
The X2 Pro needs a lot of improvements when it comes to video recording in low light conditions. Whether at 1080p or 4K, there was a lot of noise and artifacts in dark areas. We also noticed some unnatural artifacts around light sources, and the stabilization gave a very clear shimmer when walking. The wide-angle camera has taken much darker pictures due to the narrower aperture.
The Realme X2 Pro is a great deal at Rs. 29,999. Most of the functions of the OnePlus 7T, apart from the leaner software, are available at a much cheaper price. The high-end variant is still a good value, as is the case with Rs. At 33,999 for the 12 GB RAM version, it's still cheaper than the cheapest OnePlus 7T.
Of course, this phone is not without its flaws. It gets quite hot when you play heavy games and use the camera extensively. We didn't find the selfie camera particularly impressive, and overall low-light performance could be better. Apart from these problems, the X2 Pro has a lot to offer. You get excellent build quality, a lively 90 Hz display, a first-class processor and a versatile set of cameras with useful zoom function, of course with favorable lighting. Let's not forget the very good speakers, super fast charging and the fact that you still have a headphone jack.
Overall, the Realme X2 Pro is an excellent alternative to the OnePlus 7T if you're looking for that level of design and performance but don't want to spend as much.
Is Realme X2 Pro the OnePlus 7T killer you've been waiting for? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just click the play button below.