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Realme 8i Review: Better than the Redmi 10 Prime?

Pros

  • 120Hz FHD+ display
  • Great performance
  • Good battery life
  • Nice design

Cons

  • Average camera performance
  • No ultrawide camera
  • A lot of bloatware apps
  • Slightly expensive
Realme 8i review Nepal
Realme 8i Review

Realme released the Realme 8i earlier this month in Nepal. It’s the successor to the Realme 7i, which was announced last year.

Realme 8i price in Nepal is Rs. 23,799 for the 4/64GB variant and Rs. 27,199 for the 6/128GB variant. The phone can be purchased from any Realme authorized stores in Nepal.

Last year’s Realme 7i was not that particularly appealing to consumers because of its HD+ display, average chipset, and high price tag. This year, Realme has attempted to address our previous problems with the Realme 8i.

So, is the Realme 8i a smart buy? Check out TechLekh’s Realme 8i review to find out!

Realme 8i Specifications

  • Body: 164.1 x 75.5 x 8.5 mm, 194 g, Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
  • Display: 6.6 inches IPS LCD, 1080 x 2412 pixels, 20:9 ratio, ~400 ppi, 120Hz refresh rate
  • Chipset: Mediatek Helio G96 (12 nm)
  • CPU: Octa-core (2×2.05 GHz Cortex-A76 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • GPU: Mali-G57 MC2
  • Memory: 64GB 4GB RAM, 128GB 6GB RAM, UFS 2.1, expandable via microSD card
  • OS: Android 11, Realme UI 2.0
  • Rear Camera: 50 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (main), 1/2.76″, 0.64µm, PDAF
  • Front Camera: 16 MP, f/2.1, 26mm, 1/3″, 1.0µm
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 5000 mAh battery, Fast charging 18W
  • USB: USB Type-C 2.0, USB On-The-Goc
  • Misc: Fingerprint (rear-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • Colors: Black, Purple

Realme 8i Price in Nepal: Rs. 23,799 (4/64GB) | Rs. 27,199 (6/128GB)

Realme 8i Review

Design

  • 164.1 x 75.5 x 8.5 mm
  • 194 g
  • Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
  • Plastic frame and back
Realme Design
Realme 8i Design

It’s not a thin and light device, but at 8.5mm thick and 194g weight, it’s neither bulky nor heavy. As with many other mid-range phones of this price range, this phone also has a very shiny back that is made of plastic.

Its glossy back looks very beautiful, but only for about 3 seconds. Fingerprint smudges and greases would cover everything once you took it out of the box.

Moving on, the three cameras and a flash are housed in four circles inside a rectangular glass-like island on the back. The power button, which also serves as a fingerprint sensor, is located on the right side. On the opposite side are the volume buttons, and they are a little lower than I prefer.

On the front, it has a punch-hole notch (top left corner) and minimal bezels surrounding the display, with the exception of the bottom border, which is slightly bigger than the rest.

ALSO READ: Samsung Galaxy M52 5G Review: A Significant and Meaningful Upgrade

Display

  • 6.6-inch IPS LCD
  • FHD+ Display (1080 x 2412)
  • 120Hz
Realme 8i Display
Realme 8i Display

The quality of the display is good for the price. It would have been better if the phone had featured an AMOLED panel, but instead, we get an IPS LCD one. It’s a 6.6-inch panel that now has an FHD+ resolution and a 120Hz refresh rate.

The display is not the sharpest out there but the colours look good and it is sufficient for casual movie sessions. It’s also bright enough to be viewed under direct sunlight.

It can also reduce the display’s brightness to as low as 1 nit, which, I find annoying when it happens automatically rather than when I do it on purpose. When using the phone with the auto-brightness mode turned on, there have been instances where the display brightness has been reduced to the point where it is unreadable.

Scrolling through social media or navigating through the UI has been a smooth experience, thanks to the 120Hz refresh rate screen.

There are three options to choose from, one being the standard 60Hz option and others being fixed 120Hz and auto select. The latter option automatically selects the best refresh rate based on the displayed content to save the battery.

In my test, the autoselect option set the majority of its display to 90Hz while using certain apps dropped it to 60Hz. And, when not in use, it dropped to 30Hz.

Performance

  • MediaTek Helio G96 (12nm)
  • Octa-core (2×2.05 GHz Cortex-A76 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • Mali-G57 MC2
  • 4GB RAM 64GB storage, 6GB RAM 128GB storage

The Realme 8i is the first phone to come with a MediaTek Helio G96 processor. It comes with either 4GB RAM and 64GB storage or 6GB RAM and 128GB storage.

The naming of the G96 may cause confusion among consumers, as the G96 is not necessarily better than the G95. Yes, the newer chip outperforms the Helio G85, but the same cannot be said for the G95.

ALSO READ: Redmi 10 Prime Review: A Prime Budget Choice?

The Helio G96 has an octa-core CPU with two Cortex-A76 (2.05GHz) and six Cortex-A55 (2GHz) cores, similar to G95. However, the GPU is not the same between the two. The G96 has a Mali G57 MC2  which is inferior compared to the Helio G95’s Mali-G76 GPU, although the G57 has the latest Valhall arm architecture.

Talking about real-life performance, the phone easily handled all of my daily tasks. My daily tasks include scrolling through social media, watching YouTube videos, and listening to music. To note, I am using the 4GB variant, which, if you ask me, is a better value than the 6GB one.

When it comes to the phone’s gaming capabilities, I am pleased.

I played a few sessions of PUBG Mobile with graphics and frame rate set to Smooth and Ultra for the smoothest experience, and it delivered stable 40fps.

The gyroscope sensor also worked well when playing the game. During the gameplay, the rear camera portion became slightly warm but was not uncomfortably hot.

Camera

  • Rear Camera: 50 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (main), 1/2.76″, 0.64µm, PDAF
  • Front Camera: 16 MP, f/2.1, 26mm, 1/3″, 1.0µm
Realme 8i Camera
Realme 8i Camera

The Realme 8i has three rear cameras comprising a 50MP main camera, a 2MP macro, and a 2MP depth camera.

The rear cameras sit on a rectangular glass-like island, which looks nice. But one thing to keep in mind is that when taking photos, if the source of light directly hits this island at an angle, it produces light flare which results in washed-out photos.

NORMAL PHOTOS

The photos taken from the main camera, for the most part, look good to the eyes. Though, it struggled with photos with different exposure levels. In such situations, the photos had no details in the shadows.

For the highlights, it did a decent job and it also produces well-balanced colors. However, the photos were sometimes washed out, with no details in the shadows and highlights.

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NIGHT PHOTOS

The photos taken in low-light conditions are acceptable for the price. It’s not great but it is also not that bad. Turning on the night mode brings more details to the photos but they remain average.

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PORTRAIT PHOTOS

I like the portrait mode photos that this phone takes. However, it fails to detect the edge of the subject properly. The phone also oversaturates the green and red in the background in images taken in direct sunlight.

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MACRO PHOTOS

The 2MP macro photos are terrible. It is lacking in details, the colors are not vibrant, and the image is not sharp. If you want to take macro photos, I suggest using the main camera instead because the focus range is nearly identical, but the main camera produces far better photos.

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FRONT CAMERA

Selfies from the front camera have decent details in them, but I found it to be a little oversharpened. The skin tone is also inconsistent; at moments, they appear to be shifting toward yellow, and at other times, they appear to be shifting toward red.

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VIDEO

The Realme 8i can shoot up to 1080p at 30fps. The video quality is average, as it is with every other mid-range phone. The dynamic range is also poor, with poor sharpness and clarity.

When gently walking, the video seemed decently stable, but it did pick up the footsteps.

There is also the option to turn on the ‘Ultra Steady’ mode, however, I found no difference between the feature turned on and turned off.

Battery

  • 5000mAh battery
  • Fast charging 18W
  • USB Type-C

The 5000mAh battery served me well for my moderate usage. I had turned on the dark mode and 120Hz refresh rate option. It gave me around 6-8 hours of screen-on time on a single charge.

Charging the device, however, takes a good time. It takes over 2 hours to fully charge the device from zero percent.

Software and Others

  • Android 11
  • Realme UI 2.0
Realme Software
Realme 8i Software

On top of Android 11, the Realme 8i runs Realme UI 2.0. This OS does not have any serious problems or missing features that I could find. It comes with tons of bloatware apps though.

Talking about the speaker, it has a bottom-firing mono speaker. The sound quality is decent. Of course, it’s not as good as the speaker on high-end phones, but it suffices for the price.

Should You Buy Realme 8i?

Realme 8i is a decent budget phone and offers a lot of upgrades over its predecessor.

ALSO READ: Realme Mobiles Price in Nepal: Features and Specs

It has a great chipset, good design, and long battery life. It is also the cheapest phone to have a 120Hz refresh rate display. However, it lacks an ultrawide angle camera and is also slightly more expensive than the competitors such as the Redmi 10 Prime and Redmi Note 10.

If you are looking to buy this phone, I recommend the base variant (4/64GB) because it costs less than Rs. 25,000. The 6/128GB variant costs more than Rs. 27,000, which is not a good value for money in my opinion; instead, save some money and get the Realme 8 or Redmi Note 10 Pro.

What do you think of the Realme 8i? Let us know in the comments!


Also, watch our review video of the Realme 8i in Nepali.

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