Xiaomi’s Redmi Note lineup has been very popular both in China and internationally. The Redmi Note 4 is the latest model that sports great specs, fantastic build quality and it costs less than $160. Learn more in our full review.
Thanks to Oppomart for sending Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 for a review.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: VIDEO REVIEW
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: UNBOXING
The phone ships in the Xiaomi-style box. Inside of it, you can find a charger, some paperwork, SIM ejector pin and USB cable.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: SPECS
5.5″ 1080p (Full-HD)
Mediatek MTK6797 (Helio X20), 64-bit, deca-core (up to 2.1GHz)
13 MP, f/2.0, phase detection autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash / 5MP front camera
Bluetooth, 3G, 4G, GPS, WIFI, GSM,EDGE, GPRS, UMTS, HSPA, HSPA+, dual-SIM.
4.100 mAh (non-removable)
151 x 76 x 8.4 mm / 175g
MIUI 8 (Android 6.0)
16GB (expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB)
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: DESIGN and DISPLAY
The front of the phone looks just like previous Note-series devices. We have a sharp and bright 5.5” 1080p display, nicely backlit capacitive buttons and a highly customizable notification LED light.
However, once you pick the phone up, you can definitely notice that the Redmi Note 4 is much more solid and it is easily the best-constructed Redmi Note phone yet. It just feels that Xiaomi used a higher quality metal in the construction of the phone. Also, the top and bottom parts are made of aluminum too, not like previous models.
We have a 13MP shooter on the back, which is coupled with the dual-LED flash.
Xiaomi phones have been known for great fingerprint scanners and the Redmi Note 4 is no exception. You can unlock your phone very quickly straight from the standby mode.
The buttons feel nice and tactile, and we have an IR blaster to control devices like TVs.
Xiaomi decided to stick with the micro USB port on this phone. As for loudspeaker, I would say it is pretty good as on most of the Xiaomi phones. However, there is a little bit of distortion going on at the highest volume settings.
The sound quality via the headset jack is pretty good too.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: HARDWARE and PERFORMANCE
I have a standard edition of Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 sports a deca-core Mediatek Helio X20 chip with the max. clock speeds of 2.1GHz, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage, which is also expandable via the microSD card slot.
If you are willing to pay extra, you can get a 64GB model with 3GB of RAM.
The gaming performance is great and the phone performs even better than the Redmi Pro despite having the same chip. Games like Asphalt 8 run fine on the highest graphics with just a few skipped frames but that didn’t bother me at all.
A great thing is that the phone does not have any overheating issues.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: BENCHMARKS
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: USER INTERFACE
When it comes to the user interface, the Redmi Note 4 ships with the MIUI 8, which uses Android 6.0 as a foundation.
The MIUI looks similar to the older version but it also has some new design touches. For example, we have a redesigned quick settings and re-organized full settings menus. Now it is easier to find everything and the menu just looks cleaner.
As usual, there are plenty of customization options Xiaomi phones have been famous for. Just to name a few, you can adjust display settings, choose from a variety of themes and so on. One of the key features is called second space. In each space, you can have your different accounts, apps and so on, and you can easily switch from one space to another.
Most importantly, the phone has been working fine and I didn’t have any lag.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: CAMERA
We have a familiar camera app that allows you to take pictures very fast and play with some basic shooting modes and settings.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: IMAGE QUALITY
The 13MP camera produces images that are comparable to the Redmi Note 3’s camera but I think we need to see a software update to make the best out of the camera sensor.
For a $160 phone, the pictures look quite nice and there is a good amount of detail in most of the daylight shots. However, there were a few pictures with softer focus and inaccurate-looking colors, especially if you take pictures indoors.
When it comes to the low-light photography, the Redmi Note 4 is a pretty good performer. Sure, you can’t expect much from a $160 phone but the images are one of the best in class.
The video quality is pretty good but it could definitely have more detail and look sharper.
As for selfie camera, a 5MP shooter can produce quite good selfies that will be more than enough for social media.
Unfortunately, the stock camera app allows you to shoot only in 720p with the front facing camera. On the other hand, the quality of the footage is pretty good.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: CONNECTIVITY
The phone comes with a hybrid dual-SIM card tray, which can take either 2 SIMs or 1 SIM and the microSD card.
As for connectivity, everything has been working fine. Once I first got the device, the Wifi download speeds were very slow but the software update has already fixed that, so make sure your phone runs on the latest version of the MIUI.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: BATTERY LIFE
A huge 4100mAh battery has been phenomenal. I could use the phone for 2 days easily even with some heavy usage and I used the phone with the performance mode turned on all the time.
That translates to over 5 hours of screen-on time. If you are a lighter user, you can easily get over 6 or 7 hours of SOT.
Although the Note 4 uses MediaTek PumpExpress 2.0 technology for fast charging, Xiaomi does not include the fast charger in the box.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 Review: CONCLUSIONS
Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 is yet another budget offering by the Chinese giant and I have to say that it is a great phone for the price of $160.
The device sports a very good built quality and it uses metal in the construction. Also, we have one of the best-in-class display, feature-rich user interface and the phone can handle 3D games quite well. Finally, the battery life is fantastic. Even though I got just over 5 hours of screen-on time, I’ve seen some moderate users achieve over 7 hours of SOT.
On the other hand, the rear camera does not seem to have been upgraded. In fact, the current software build leads to a slightly worse performance than the Redmi Note 3 but knowing Xiaomi, it will be definitely fixed with a software update.
The question is: should you upgrade if you have the Redmi Note 3. I would say no since this phone is just an incremental upgrade.
However, if you are in the market of a solid budget-friendly phone, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 should be definitely on your list as it is an easy buying recommendation for the price of under $160.
If you are in the market of a solid budget-friendly phone, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 should be definitely on your list as it is an easy buying recommendation for the price of under $160.