For its smartphones, Realme’s amazing design formula seems to be working in its favor, and two new models called the Realme X7 and the Realme X7 Pro are kicking off in 2021. Last year in China, both smartphones were released, though with different names, and are now making their way to our market. We’ll be testing out the Realme X7 Pro today, priced at Rs. 29,999, which slots between the Realme X7 and the Realme X50 Pro from the looks of it.
This is one of India’s first smartphones to feature 5G SoCs from MediaTek’s Dimensity series. It also features a touchscreen with a high refresh rate, super-fast charging, and plenty of cameras. It takes on phones such as the OnePlus Nord and the Oppo Reno 5 Pro 5G as far as the competition goes. So, does the X7 Pro 5G give better value than any of these? Let’s explore it.
Realme X7 Pro 5G price and variants
In a single configuration, with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, Realme has released the X7 Pro 5G in India. This is equipped with LPDDR4X RAM and UFS 2.1 storage but expandable storage in the form of a MicroSD card slot is not provided. There are two choices for color, Magical Black and Fantasy. It’s got an iridescent rear panel of glass and looks pretty funky, but I just wish Realme hadn’t embossed the slogan on the back. Instead, this should have been maintained in the bundled situation. Luckily, there’s no writing in the black edition.
Realme X7 Pro 5G design and specifications
The Realme X7 Pro 5G, especially the rear camera module design, looks very similar to the Realme 7 Pro. Thanks to the slim body and relatively low weight of 184g, one-handed use is very comfortable. There is a nice tactile feel to the physical buttons and the polycarbonate frame feels solid. A lot of fingerprints are picked up by the glass back and the pre-applied screen protector, but these are quick to clean off.
One of the Realme X7 Pro’s highlights is the screen, and Realme hasn’t held back. It is a 6.55-inch full-HD+ Super AMOLED screen with an in-display fingerprint sensor, Gorilla Glass 5 refresh rate up to 120Hz, and HDR video playback support. Around the screen, you get slim bezels and a reported peak brightness of 1,200nits. This screen looks fantastic, the touch response is precise, and even under bright lights, the text is very easily readable.
A headphone socket is missing from the Realme X7 Pro 5G, but it does come with a Type-C to 3.5mm adapter in the package. A 65W adapter, USB Type-C cable, case, and the SIM eject tool are the rest of the contents of the package. The use of MediaTek’s Dimensity 1000+ 5G SoC, which we recently saw in action in Oppo’s Reno 5 Pro 5G, is another feature worth noting. With good CPU and GPU performance, it’s quite a power-efficient SoC. Wi-Fi ac, Bluetooth 5, NFC, dual-band support for five satellite navigation systems, and the normal sensor suite are also available.
Realme X7 Pro 5G performance and battery life
In the short time that I had to test it, the Realme X7 Pro 5G ran smoothly. I have not noticed any kind of unwarranted heating, system lag, or slowdowns. The 120Hz display makes use feel fluid, and depending on the app being used, the phone can switch between 120Hz and 60Hz automatically. It’s not adaptive, though, as we recently saw on the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G, so the display will continue to run at 120Hz even if no touch input is registered. In my experience, this was not a very big deal as it did not seem to adversely affect the battery life too much.
Realme says that the fingerprint in-display sensor is narrower than the one used in its previous versions, and it works just as well as before in my experience. A light touch is all that is required to open it effectively. Even in poor lighting, which has been a running theme on Realme smartphones, face recognition is equally quick and works very well.
Realme UI 1.0, based on Android 10, is still running the Realme X7 Pro 5G. Although Realme has begun an early access program for some of its smartphones, the next version based on Android 11 is still a work in progress. There isn’t anything that we haven’t seen before. At this point, the Realme UI is very polished and is easy to get used to. It’s still flooded with bloatware, but you can delete much of it. In particular, the Browser app is infamous for sending spam alerts, even though you have never opened the app before. To disable this behavior, you’ll have to dive into its settings.
Gaming and media results have been exceptional. Good benchmark numbers were posted by the Realme X7 Pro 5G; better than what the Oppo Reno 5 Pro 5G managed. Without causing any kind of heating problem, games like Oceanhorn and Call of Duty Mobile ran effortlessly. The phone has a cooling system for the vapor chamber, which seems to be doing its job very efficiently. Along with Dolby Atmos, the X7 Pro 5G has stereo speakers, which together deliver rich and reasonably accurate audio.
The 4,500mAh battery, even with heavy use, comfortably managed to get me through one full day. The 65W SuperDart rapid charging means that in half an hour, this phone can be charged up to 91 percent, which is very good. In our HD video loop test, the Realme X7 Pro 5G lasted 16 hours, 42 minutes, which, again, is fine.
Realme X7 Pro 5G cameras
There is a familiar camera setup in the Realme X7 Pro 5G that we’ve seen on some of its previous smartphones. You get a 32-megapixel selfie camera on the front, and there are four sensors on the back, including a 64-megapixel main camera, an ultra-wide-angle 8-megapixel camera, a 2-megapixel monochrome camera, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. You can capture up to 4K video at 60fps, but with the main rear camera only. The selfie camera is restricted to 1080p video recording. Nightscape for video, AI Colour Portrait, and real-time video bokeh effects are other video features, all of which we’ve seen in previous Realme smartphones.
In landscape shots, the Realme X7 Pro 5G captures strong details and exposure. HDR is treated well and when shooting during the day, there is no shutter lag. Even for close-up images, the 16-megapixel pixel-binned photos that this phone captures by default give very good details, although you can shoot at the maximum 64-megapixel resolution if required. The ultra-wide-angle camera has its applications, but note that there are weaker details.
Although the rear cameras are reasonably reliable during the day, in low light they seem to really fail. Standard low-light shots do not pack in much detail, but Nightscape helps to achieve better exposure. Even so, I found a lot of unnecessary noise that made it look patchy in very dark regions. This is even more pronounced with the ultra-wide-angle camera when using Nightscape. In very dark settings, the X7 Pro 5G also fails to concentrate on close-up topics. Give enough artificial light to the sensors, however, and you can get some very functional images.
With good stabilization, the video quality is decent at 4K, and when I changed my frame, the autofocus adjusted easily. When I was shooting at night, the results were grainy, and although the Ultra Night video mode improves the ISO to make the performance brighter, as a result, I missed out on texture quality.
The selfie camera manages to capture good photos under good light, but after turning off the beauty filter, skin tones continued to look flawless. The Realme X7 Pro 5G captures indoor selfies, but you’ll need the screen flash if you’re shooting outdoors at night.
Overall, if you shoot during the day, the cameras on the Realme X7 Pro 5G do a decent job but fail to deliver satisfactory results in low light.
The Realme X7 Pro 5G checks many of the boxes for a strong mid-range “flagship killer”, and feels like a worthy successor to the Realme X2 Pro in many aspects. It provides a vibrant display, smooth operation, excellent battery life, very fast charging, and good daylight shooting cameras. The inclusion of stereo speakers and 5G support, even though the capacity is limited to just 128 GB, makes it a decent possible alternative to the OnePlus Nord.
I think Realme should have done far more to make this a memorable smartphone, and really set it apart from its mainstream series of numbers. For example, the design is close to that of the company’s 7 series, and many of the features of the X7 Pro are also available in more affordable versions from Realme. In low light, the cameras aren’t very impressive either; an environment in which Oppo’s Reno 5 Pro 5G pulls forward. And then there’s the app, which is still Android 10 as phones based on Android 11 are released by most other manufacturers.
The Realme X7 Pro 5G provides decent value at Rs. 29,999, but it’s just not as exciting as it should be compared to the OnePlus Nord and Oppo Reno 5 Pro 5G.