Redmi 9A Review: Budget phones lately are nowhere near what they wont to be, say about 5 years ago. Even with the foremost minimum of investments, you’ll bring home a good-looking and a well-performing smartphone. We already skill synonymous the corporate Xiaomi and therefore the phrase ”value-for-money” products are. And today, I even have the new Redmi 9A with me which is one among the most cost-effective smartphones the corporate currently sells. Launched for Rs. 11,499 here in Nepal which nets bent around $95, how good is that this device? Let’s determine more during this review of the Redmi 9A.
Redmi 9A Specifications:
|Body:||6.49 x 3.03 x 0.35-inches; 196gm|
|Display:||6.53-inches IPS LCD panel; 400 nit brightness; 88.84% screen-to-body ratio; 269 PPI|
|Resolution:||HD+ (1600 x 720 pixels); 20:9 aspect ratio|
|Chipset:||MediaTek Helio G25 (12nm mobile platform)|
|CPU:||Octa-core 2.0 GHz Cortex-A53|
|Storage:||32GB eMMC 5.1 (expandable with a dedicated microSDXC slot)|
|Software & UI:||MIUI 12 on top of Android 10|
|Rear Camera:||13MP f/2.2 lens; Single-tone LED flash|
|Front Camera:||5MP, f/2.2 lens|
|Security:||AI Face Unlock|
|Audio:||Speakers, 3.5mm headphone jack|
|Connectivity:||Dual SIM (Nano-SIM), WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 5.0, GPS with A-GPS/GLONASS/Beidou, micro USB 2.0, LTE|
|Battery:||5000mAh with 10W charging|
|Colours:||Granite Grey, Sky Blue, Peacock Green|
|Price in Nepal:||Rs. 11,499 (2/32GB)|
Redmi 9A Review:
- Polycarbonate build material
- Slight weight imbalance
Starting with the planning, Xiaomi has once more blessed the market with a very attractive budget phone. While its predecessor the Redmi 8A had a gradient design with the rear camera module and a particular strip at the middle, things are a touch different on the 9A. Here, you’re getting a uni-tone design where the camera module and its reflective vertical strip are shifted to the left. Personally, I’m keen on this design choice – looks quite neat. Available in either Granite Grey, Peacock Green, and Sky Blue colour options, as you’ll see, the latter is what I even have with me.
The phone features a polycarbonate body and feels surprisingly good on the hands. Its rear panel features a ridged surface that holds up nice. The surface doesn’t attract fingerprints or smudges in any major way but I do need to warn you that tiny dust particles can grind to a halt between the ridges which are a touch hard to urge obviate. For this reason, I might suggest you get an honest case for the phone.
Moving to the buttons & ports, the Redmi 9A covers all the edges with something. At the highest may be a 3.5mm headphone jack while the left frame holds the SIM tray. Similarly, you’ll find the quantity rockers and therefore, the power button on the proper alongside a micro USB port and the speaker grille at rock bottom. Yep, Xiaomi has downgraded the Type-C connection from the Redmi 8A to a dated micro USB on the 9A which may be a major bummer. beat all, the Redmi 9A may be a fashionable and really well-built device. the load distribution may be a little uneven with rock bottom half the phone feeling a touch heavier, but that doesn’t really matter.
- 6.53-inches HD+ IPS LCD panel
- No protective glass of any kind
- Wildly colour inaccurate
In the display side of things, you’re now getting a much bigger 6.53-inches IPS LCD panel. It’s still an HD+ display, therefore, the sharpness is certainly not gonna blow you away. Clocking 400 nits of typical brightness, Redmi 9A has no visibility issue indoors or cloudy outdoors. However, during my review, trying to urge through Redmi 9A under direct sunlight was a struggle. The phone is additionally TUV Rheinland Low Blue Light certified to guard your eyes against prolonged exposure to its blue light.
Even with all this, Xiaomi has made tons of cuts within the display front on the Redmi 9A. First off, the Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection that we were impressed with on the Redmi 8 series is gone now. Yep, this phone doesn’t have any sort of protective glass so that’s getting to be worrisome to several. Furthermore, the display itself just isn’t that good – even for an HD+ panel on a budget phone.
Noticeable colour imbalance
To start things off, it’s terrible colour accuracy. Even within the default recommended settings, you’ll notice a small greenish tint throughout the panel and everything looks unnatural and overly cinematic. this is often most noticeable when watching videos where the content’s lighting scheme feels way too off if you’ve already watched an equivalent video on another display. And I’m not saying its colour accuracy is inferior to an OLED or an AMOLED panel. The regular HD IPS LCD panels on other phones are enough to pin it down.
You can tweak around the colour scheme but ultimately, Redmi 9A can’t deliver a suitable level of colour accuracy. Red, Pink, and Yellow are a touch under-saturated sometimes while White features a more creamy and silvery finish thereto. needless to say, the sharpness isn’t that great and therefore the contents on the screen (especially videos) look blurry and distracting if you’re wont to an FHD or a QHD+ display. this might be a result of a bigger display and a skinny pixel density of just 269 PPI.
- Octa-core MediaTek Helio G25 SoC (12nm)
- 2GB LPDDR4x RAM and 32GB eMMC 5.1 storage (expandable)
- MIUI 12 on top of Android 10
Getting into performance, Redmi 9A is powered by the new Helio G25 chipset from MediaTek. Manufactured under the 12nm process node, it’s gaming-oriented silicon with and a 64-bit octa-core CPU with all eight Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 2.0 GHz. Handling the graphics on this phone is that the IMG PowerVR8320 GPU clocked at 650 MHz. With these, the Redmi 9A should outperform the Snapdragon 439 found in its predecessor albeit by just a touch bit.
Because it’s a gaming SoC, let’s discuss the gaming performance first. I attempted out a bunch of taxing and light-weight games on the Redmi 9A during my review and got a mixed experience which mostly leans on the bad side of things. PUBG Mobile was just about unplayable even in Smooth graphics and Low frame rate with constant stutters.
So, I switched to its Lite version instead, and here, the sport was well playable when meddling through the graphics settings. PUBG Lite can practically erupt HD graphics and Extreme frame rate but I wouldn’t suggest you are doing so since the gameplay are going to be very laggy under these settings. Instead, I got a comparatively smooth performance when switching it right down to Balanced graphics and High frame rate.
Likewise, COD Mobile is maxed out at Low graphics while the frame rate is often bumped to High. you’re also locked out from changing other settings like anti-aliasing, graphic style, etc. Under the High & Medium frame rate, the gameplay is crammed with heavy stutters though it had been a touch bearable when tuning it to Low. Furthermore, of these FPS games have this fringy and aliased graphics and even the touch response would hand over sometimes – but rarely. The phone also heats up after about 10 minutes of gameplay.
What about light games?
Moving to lightweight games, I attempted out Clash Royale, Frag, and Bowmasters. Clash Royale ran smoothly with no issue and therefore the same goes for Bowmasters. However, there have been a couple of instances of stutters on the latter. Similarly, Frag is additionally playable though I’d advise against setting the graphics to High. Considering everything, Redmi 9A’s gaming prowess is sort of admirable though Xiaomi could push an update for the difficulty of frequent stutters.
When it involves normal usage, it is… fine. Redmi 9A features a single memory configuration with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of eMMC 5.1 storage. It runs on the full-fledged MIUI 12 on top of Android 10. But that memory confinement may be a big disappointed which is reflected within the phone’s performance. A mere 2GB of RAM on a phone running one among the heaviest (if not THE heaviest) Android skins isn’t an honest combo.
Because of this, my experience with the phone was quite laggy. The extent of MIUI 12’s load is additionally explored on the system memory Redmi 9A occupies. Out of the 32GB, the system alone devours around 7.25GB which I feel is just too much for a phone of this stature. to stop all this, Google is stepping up by having OEMs from ship phones with 2GB RAM or less with a modified Android Go Edition instead – starting with Android 11. Seeing how Redmi 9A has clothed, I wholeheartedly accept as true with Google’s decision.
Having said that, using regular apps like Facebook, YouTube, Messages, etc. and even multitasking among them is ok. But that’s not gonna be the case when bringing during a few games into the combination. I’m a sucker for Android 10’s gesture navigation and when pulling up the list of apps in RAM, there’s a clear lag almost whenever.
You will get ads on this thing, yes but not something that absolutely ruined my time with the phone. Unlike what percentage have acknowledged that they receive lewd ads on their different MIUI devices, all the ads I got were of 1 VPN app throughout my time with the device. Maybe Xiaomi has listened to all or any the backlash from the community.
In terms of pre-installed apps, I used to be quite surprised to ascertain Google Phone, Messages, and Chrome rather than their Xiaomi alternatives. There also are a couple of bloatware apps & games but you’ll uninstall most of them including Mi Community. The phone just launched in India today, and for our Indian audience, you don’t get to worry about government-banned apps thereon since Xiaomi just rolled-out a refined version of MIUI 12 for the country with none of the banned apps.
- Rear: Single 13MP f/2.2 lens
- Front: Single 5MP f/2.2 lens (teardrop notch)
Let’s mention the camera now, shall we? it’s one 13MP lens at the rear and a 5MP front camera inside the teardrop notch. With ample light, the pictures from the first lens are quite good.
They are well detailed and therefore the colour-reproduction is fairly accurate albeit it leans on the under-saturated side.
The dynamic range isn’t that great because the white balance on sky and such is pretty terrible – which has been the case with many budgets and mid-range Redmi phones.
HDR & Pro mode
Turning on HDR does help a touch bit with the dynamic range but oversaturates the pictures within the process. this is often especially noticeable when shooting images in close range though landscape photos end up quite pleasing to seem at. It takes around 2 – 3 seconds to process so if your hands aren’t adequately still, images might begin blurrily.
There’s also a “Pro” mode that allows you to fiddle with ISO, White Balance, Exposure, etc. The camera UI is straightforward to use and it even has the Google Lens integration.
This lens also has AI scene detection which recognizes things like flowers, buildings, scenery, etc. and optimizes the image. But most of the time, all it does is over-saturate the first colours within the shot. There’s also the sweetness mode and filters using which you’ll give your image a special colour tone at the time of the shooting.
Portrait & Selfie Images
You can also take portrait shots using both front and rear camera but the sting detection isn’t that great because it misses out on the bokeh effect in many sections of the topic.
Moving to the selfie images, they’re OK for the worth, I guess. However, images find yourself looking pale and lifeless at the most times. If there’s ample light, it takes acceptable selfies with an honest specialise in the topic.
Also, Redmi 9A supports Face Unlock which takes a minimum of a second to unlock the phone when it accepts your face. But around 30 – 40% of the time, the phone fails to acknowledge altogether.
Like it is with every budget phone, this one doesn’t have a fanatical night mode either. As a result, shots within the dark are way too grainy, with terrible sharpness. Should there be some decent lighting within the environment, the photos will end up to be somewhat acceptable.
In terms of videos, Redmi 9A tops out at 1080p/60fps from the most and 1080p/30fps recordings from the front camera. The videos from most sensor look eerie and over-sharpened. Also, you’ll shoot time-lapse and a 15-second short video on this phone.
- 5000mAh battery with 10W charging
- Micro USB 2.0
Powering the phone may be a massive 5000mAh battery. this is often easily a 2-day device under light and medium usage which was reflected well during my review period of the Redmi 9A. There’s also an “Ultra Battery Saver” mode which is analogous to Samsung’s “Maximum Power Save” mode which confines you to the foremost basic of tasks on the device.
But charging the phone may be a pain because it only supports 10W wired charging via a micro USB cable. this is often a serious setback considering how the Redmi 8A supported 18W fast charging and had a USB Type-C port. With this, it took me about 2 hours and 50 minutes to completely charge the phone from 0 to 100%.
- Bottom-firing speaker
- 3.5mm headphone jack
When it involves audio, Redmi 9A features a single bottom-firing speaker and its output is decently loud and sharp. However, I felt that the sound quality is sort of shallow and features a shrieking feel when maxing out the quantity. The audio from the headphone jack, however, is pretty decent though it doesn’t get loud enough. Call quality is equally great and that I received no complaints regarding my voice or sound level – and neither was there any call-drop issue.
Redmi 9A Review: Pros & Cons
- Great design and feels good on the hand
- Excellent battery life (2-day phone)
- Exciting gaming probabilities with the Helio G25
- Decent camera performance under sufficient lighting
- The display has a terrible colour accuracy
- 2GB RAM is insufficient for the full-fledged MIUI
- Occasional ads can be witnessed
- No protective glass included
- Slow charging via micro USB connection
To sum it all up, the Redmi 9A is an okay phone for the worth as we’ve discovered throughout this review. Compared to its predecessor the Redmi 8A, I don’t understand why Xiaomi decided to compromise such crucial aspects just like the Gorilla Glass 5 protection and a faster charging via Type-C. The HD+ display would’ve been fine had the corporate worked on better colour accuracy. Despite this, Redmi 9A may be a decent value for money with acceptable gaming performance and cameras. Likewise, the battery life on this phone is basically amazing which can easily last you each day even with the heaviest of workload.
Also Read Redmi 9 Review: Best Budget Phone King!
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