Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review
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Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

The Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is available in South Africa now and the smartphone aims to deliver a high-end experience to users without breaking the bank. This smartphone retails for R10,999 which is quite impressive if you put the specs next to its name.

With a 200MP camera, a 5,000mAh battery, the included 120W charger, and 8GB of RAM alongside 256GB of storage, this phone checks all the boxes. For just over R10,000, you’re getting a pretty robust smartphone with features that seem almost impossible in that price range. While some of these specs perform better than others, the Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is a highly competitive device.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Design

The Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is a 6.67-inch device. As a result, the phone features mostly a screen on the front. The 13 Pro+ packs a curved AMOLED display too which adds to the sophistication. I am honestly not a huge fan of curved displays on a smartphone. They serve no purpose but for those who have always wanted one on their Redmi phone, it is here. The 6.67-inch display includes a resolution of 1220 x 2712 and an aspect ratio of 20:9.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

I received the black Redmi Note 13 Pro+ to review. It is likely the least fabulous model in the bunch but it works. The black shade looks glossy throughout the device which means it is also a fingerprint magnet. The phone is meant to have a colour-blocking design at the back. The camera lens being one shade of colour, the block next to it another and the larger block under them too. On the black model, this effect isn’t very noticeable.

Speaking of, the camera array is quite large and features two big rings alongside the smaller macro lens. It goes without saying that this causes a noticeable wobble on the phone when laying it flat. A common issue on most phones.

When it comes to the sides, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ includes two buttons on the right of the phone. One is a power button and the volume rocker. The SIM tray is then located at the bottom alongside the USB C port. At the top, you’ll find all the microphone and speaker ports. There’s no 3.5mm jack here even though the lesser 13 models include it. Strange decision from the brand.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

For the most part, I enjoy the design of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+. I am not a fan of the curved display at all and the glass body feels a bit dated but it works. The most important is that it feels premium which it does. The screen is definitely the standout here and it looks gorgeous. The fingerprint scanner, while you can’t see it, of course, is a nice addition and it also feels responsive.

Xiaomi also didn’t compromise on the display’s protection. It features Corning Gorilla Glass Victus and the phone features an IP68 rating. I can’t tell you how many “budget” phones leave these features out.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Performance

Given the asking price of this Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+, I was pleasantly surprised by the device’s performance. It offers snappy performance and an all-day battery life – something you would expect from much higher-priced phones.

First off, the AMOLED screen is the real game-changer here. Its 120Hz refresh rate makes everything feel incredibly smooth. The display can also be tweaked all the way down to 1Hz when needed to help save battery. But everything I did on the phone looked superb.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

HDR and Dolby Vision content glows thanks to this display’s bright panel. This also means the display gets super bright in outdoor environments which is easy to see. It also elivates all the content you consume on the phone. Be it browsing through photos you take or videos you film. Games also feel fantastic to play especially when they take advantage of the higher refresh rate.

When it comes to the raw performance of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+, it again performs like a high-end phone. It comes with 12GB of RAM and a 512GB ROM. The MediaTek Dimensity 7200-Ultra SoC also helps carry the power. Keep in mind that while this chip is snappy, it isn’t the best around and I did notice a few slowdown issues here and there. But these were with various apps open, games running in the background and using the camera at the same time. A scenario you will never come across.

The phone does get warm during heavy use, especially gaming. However, not to the point where it could be seen as a concern. I ran a Geekbench test on the device and it provided the following scores:

  • Geekbench
    • Single-Core – 1080
    • Multi-Core – 2293

If you look at these scores, they kind of put the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ alongside the Samsung Galaxy S21 FE which is expected given the price point of the phone. These scores, of course, don’t really translate to your daily use of the phone because everything I threw at the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ performed fairly well.\

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

I do have to complain a little about the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ from the software point of view. There’s a lot of bloatware on this phone. Way too much. It is like an Android from 2018. Littered with various apps you’ll never use. I am also not the biggest fan of Xiaomi’s MIUI operating system. It doesn’t feel as fluid and smooth as other Android skins on the market. But these things are easy to get used to.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Camera

A big feature set of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is the camera system. The main camera on the device is a 200MP lens with an f.165 aperture and a large 1/1.4-inch sensor. It also packs OIS.

Given this large sensor, the device offers various ways to shoot. By default, it shoots in a 16-in-1 mode which produces larger 12.5MP photos. However, you can also choose from a range of other file modes such as 200MP photos and a 2X or 4X zoon crop mode that automatically crops the image from the shots taken on the main lens.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Main Lens – 200MP shot compressed down

The main lens is impressive. 200MP might be a little bit extreme but it does deliver sharp and detailed shots. Of course, this doesn’t mean a 24MP camera can’t do the same. Don’t think 200MP makes for a better “experience” because most mobile photography relies heavily on software tweaks and other sensor features.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Main Lens 4X Zoom

The main lens shoots some gorgeous photos during the day. The subtle bokeh effect is also noticeable without any portrait mode when you tap on the object of the shot. However, there is also a built-in portrait mode for more pronounced blur. I did have a few exposure hiccups on the device from time to time but they weren’t a constant issue.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Main Lens 4X Zoom

When it comes to lower-light shots, there is noticeable noise in the photos.

The 8MP ultra-wide lens, on the other hand, struggles to deliver even half the quality of the main lens. It is noticeably noisier and struggles with sharpness. This is even worse in low-light shots.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Main Lens 4X Zoom

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Macro Lens

Lastly, there’s a 2MP macro lens which is okay. I am usually obsessed with macro photography but the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ let me down here. This sensor isn’t great. Photos are blurry and turn out low-resolution. I found using the main camera produced better macro-like shots.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Main Lens 2X zoom

I did enjoy the “pro” mode on the camera app. It allowed me to finely adjust various settings on the camera such as white balance, ISO, focus and exposure. Usually, you would have to download a separate third-party app to truly unlock the potential of your phone camera so it was nice to this this included. It means you can master the camera and get the shots you really want.

When it comes to video, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ does include a 4K 24FPS mode which is great for cinematic shots. There’s also 4K 30FPS but no 4K 60FPS. This is a pity given the large sensor and 512GB storage. The phone is more than ready for that sort of file type.

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Review

Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ Verdict

Overall, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is a good phone, especially considering its asking price. It would be difficult to get the same screen, battery and camera system on competitor brands for the same price. That alone is a big sell here. It isn’t very fair to compare this to say a Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra or iPhone 15 Pro Max but at times, I felt like I was getting a few hints of those features on this phone.

Summary

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ is one of the best budget phones on the market. With a robust battery, large camera sensor and high-end features, this phone packs features you’ll only find in pricier models on the market.

Overall
9/10
9/10

Pros

Main camera is good

AMOLED screen

Battery life

Decent storage

Cons

Macro lens and 8MP aren’t great

MIUI is cumbersome

Bloatware

Marco is the owner and founder of GLITCHED. South Africa’s largest gaming and pop culture website. GLITCHED quickly established itself with tech and gaming enthusiasts with on-point opinions, quick coverage of breaking events and unbiased reviews across its website, social platforms, and YouTube channel.

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