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Red Magic Phone review

Everybody and their mom is making a gaming cell phone nowadays, which more often than not implies a powerful processor that organizes execution for illustrations escalated recreations, in addition to some different highlights gamers would appreciate. Samsung has driven this with the Note 9, there's the Honor Play, a year ago we saw the Razer Phone, and there's a whole other world to come like the Asus ROG Phone, and the Xiaomi Black Shark.
Red Magic Phone

Add another one to the rundown: The Red Magic Phone, from ZTE sub-mark Nubia. It has an inventive cooling framework, a diversion boosting mode, a RGB LED light strip, and a mid-go sticker price. It conveys with execution, yet we don't know whether it's a remarkable deal when telephones like the OnePlus 6 exist. How about we investigate.


Place the Red Magic Phone down on a surface, and you'll see it shakes altogether. That is a direct result of its special plan. The back isn't level, as the best and base edges slant downwards to shape a crystal, with a long RGB strip running down the middle.

We're very awed with the Red Magic Phone's look, and the hexagonal-formed camera is good to beat all. Notwithstanding its expansive size, the telephone is agreeable to hold, and our fingers slipped pleasantly into the right spot along the telephone's inclines.

Red Magic Phone

Red Magic Phone

Red Magic Phone

Red Magic Phone

So, the Red Magic Phone rocks a great deal when set down, making it hard to use on a level surface, and the anodized metal complete makes it very elusive in the hand. While the metal will probably demonstrate more sturdy than glass telephones, this is one of the principal telephones we've seen to scratch so effortlessly by keys in a pocket. We don't figure this telephone will look too great following a time of utilization with simply customary wear and tear.

We're fanatics of the way ZTE found an exceptional plan without trading off on the Red Magic Phone's ease of use.

The front of the Red Magic Phone isn't as fascinating. A 6-inch screen is encompassed by thin bezels, and valuable little else beside the forward looking camera. The bezels aren't the slimmest we've seen, however despite everything it looks contemporary. The power catch is on the right-hand side, underneath the volume rocker. There's likewise an additional catch featured in red on the correct edge, and it controls the Gameboost setting, which we'll get to later. A USB Type-C port sits at the base, and an earphone jack rests at the best, which is constantly pleasant to see.

The LED strip on the back is fit for showing 16 million hues in four distinctive light impacts. There are a couple of alternatives that administer when the strip will actuate, yet it will commonly illuminate amid diversions, while charging, or to flag when notices arrive. It's very like the RBG light on the back of the Asus ROG Phone.

You're probably not going to see the strip yourself more often than not, since it's situated on the back of the telephone. It's a trick, and to a great extent serves to expand the "gamer cred" look of the Red Magic Phone. That doesn't prevent it from looking cool when it illuminates, however.


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Investigate the back, and you'll discover four red cuts, flawlessly set driving up the telephone's focal edge. These aren't only for looks — the main two capacity as fumes ports for the gadget's cooling framework. The telephone utilizes layers of graphite to draw warm far from parts, which is then flushed out of the framework through the fumes ports and the extra surface territory of the crystal formed back.

It's very successful. We tried the Red Magic Phone with some exceptional augmented simulation encounters with an outsider VR headset, and the telephone remained cool. Our Galaxy S8 — which has a similar processor — became progressively hot to the touch amid similar encounters.


The Red Magic Phone's 6-inch LTPS IPS LCD show runs a 2,160 x 1,080 goals in a 18:9 viewpoint proportion. LTPS — or low-temperature polycrystalline silicon — is a sort of LCD show that runs cooler than typical LCD shows. Beside that, the screen is not all that much. There's no extraordinary 120Hz presentation enchantment like we saw on the Razer Phone, and it's not even close comparable to the Galaxy Note 9's AMOLED screen.

We had no issues seeing the screen in direct daylight, however it didn't get diminish enough. Open the Red Magic Phone during the evening on low splendor and you'll be blinded. The auto splendor include likewise didn't work especially well, as it frequently neglected to change the screen dependent on encompassing light dimensions.

Red Magic Phone

Stamp Jansen/Digital Trends

These are little defects — the Red Magic Phone's screen is still clear, splendid, and bright. It's not the most keen, but rather it's more than sufficiently fresh to make out the littlest points of interest on your portable diversions or most loved applications. It's simply odd the organization didn't endeavor to include a superior presentation or a higher goals, seeing as it's what you'll be taking a gander at the most when playing diversions.

Fortunately, the speakers offer a more great affair. Sound leaves the two lower cuts on the back of the telephone. It gets to a great degree noisy — when put on the most intense notice volume, we could plainly hear the telephone toll from three rooms away. Nubia has likewise added a group of highlights to help sound quality, including an incorporated DAC, DTS Technology, and a Smart Amplifier framework.

The situating and state of the gadget likewise implies you're probably going to glass the speakers with your hand when holding the telephone in scene, instead of square them. This structures a harsh sound chamber that makes everything sound significantly more intense, not that the telephone needs it. The speakers are perfectly clear, with worthy bass and treble, and remarkable volume.


The Red Magic Phone is controlled by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835, and accompanies either 6GB of RAM and 64GB of capacity, or 8GB of RAM and 128GB of capacity. There's no MicroSD card opening however, so remember that while choosing your model.

With light use, it wouldn't shock for this telephone to keep going more than two days on a solitary charge.

The decision of a year ago's leader Snapdragon 835 chip over the current year's Snapdragon 845 is odd, particularly in a telephone implied for elite gaming. Doubtlessly a gaming telephone would need the most recent snort to control through the most requesting recreations? Nubia guarantees the Red Magic Phone isn't the most ground-breaking telephone for gaming — yet the most steady. It said the Snapdragon 835 is the best decision in an equalization of intensity, battery utilization, and temperature the executives. We never kept running into issues with telephones utilizing the Snapdragon 845, yet we additionally haven't kept running into any issues with the Red Magic Phone.

Execution is smooth, applications open rapidly, and we haven't seen any noteworthy stoppage in our utilization. That speed is in any event mostly to do with the thin Android 8.1 Oreo working framework. There's no bloatware or skin; it accompanies Google applications and the rudiments introduced. You'll discover additional settings classes for the RGB light and the Gameboost mode, yet that is about it.

Here are a couple of benchmark results:

AnTuTu 3DBench: 215,454

Geekbench 4 CPU: 1,935 single-center; 6,636 multi-center

3DMark Sling Shot Extreme: 2,841 (Vulkan)

Nubia said it advanced the Snapdragon 835 in its telephone, and that improvement appears. The benchmark numbers surpass most other Snapdragon 835-prepared telephones, including the ongoing Moto Z3, and the Google Pixel 2.

In any case, the Red Magic Phone is worked to diversion, and we need to handle the inquiry in the long run: how great is it as a versatile gaming gadget? We tossed the most requesting recreations we could discover at it, playing different rounds of Tekken, Asphalt Legends 9, and Dragonball Legends, and the Red Magic Phone took care of every one of them unimaginably well, with sleek execution. We even figured out how to get a session of Rocket League running utilizing the Steam Link Android application and USB OTG support to associate a controller to the telephone.

Red Magic Phone

Check Jansen/Digital Trends

It wasn't immaculate, however. It had a few issues running PUBG Mobile, hitting a couple of casing hitches amid the underlying parachuting grouping, however it kept running as easily as alternate diversions after that — this may not be the telephone's blame, but rather more the application engineer.

The Red Magic Phone is furnished with Bluetooth 5.0, however there's no NFC. That implies you can't make contactless installments through Google Pay. It's a disgrace to see this missing, as a few telephones in its value extend — and less expensive gadgets — have this component.

Additionally included with the Red Magic Phone is the Gameboost mode, actuated by flicking the red switch on the right-hand side of the telephone. It should support gaming execution by compelling a more steady framerate, blocking notice cautions, and increment application stacking times. Since the Red Magic Phone's execution was at that point so smooth, we didn't see much contrast whether the mode was on or not. We generally utilized the mode as an approach to flaunt the LED strip, and square warnings amid ongoing interaction.


The camera is the weakest piece of the Red Magic Phone, maybe obviously. It's a solitary 24-megapixel focal point with a f/1.7 gap. We adore the hexagonal edge and red feature around the focal point, however it does marginally projects from the back.

It performs well in great lighting, giving us photographs with great shading precision and detail. While there's no second focal point for profundity of-field imitating, the Red Magic Phone has a bokeh mode that includes obscure behind subjects. It's hit-and-miss as it experiences difficulty precisely setting the foundation obscure.

red enchantment telephone survey redmagicphone camsample3 Mark Jansen/Digital Trends

red enchantment telephone survey redmagicphone camsample4 Mark Jansen/Digital Trends

Stamp Jansen/Digital Trends

The absence of optical picture adjustment (OIS) truly hampers the camera, and you'll battle to take nice shots if your objective is moving. The HDR mode likewise will in general overexpose, and things get ugly in low light. The camera attempted to locate a decent spotlight point on a sufficiently bright seafront, bringing about a photograph with bunches of haze and a lot of clamor.

The camera application is quick and responsive, notwithstanding, and there's not really any screen slack. It's a little barebones contrasted with different applications, yet regardless you'll locate a not too bad suite of highlights here. Professional mode gives you a chance to adjust the shade speed and ISO, and video recording goes up to 4K.

The 8-megapixel selfie camera takes not too bad photographs, yet it will in general overexpose — particularly the sky. The Beauty mode is likewise a little ponderous, and we looked somewhat plastic in a couple of our snaps.


The Red Magic Phone accompanies a tremendous 3,800mAh battery that ought to guarantee your gaming sessions are never stopped by a level battery. We took the telephone off the charger at 8 a.m., and following multi day of substantial to medium utilization viewing YouTube recordings, music spilling, some light gaming, and texting, it finished the day at 8 p.m. with in excess of 60 percent battery left. It figured out how to last until late morning the following day, when it hit 15 percent and was connected to charge.

You'll locate no remote charging here, yet the telephone supports Quick Charge 3.0. Accusing from 13 percent of the included charger, it achieved 100 percent in under a hour and half.


The Red Magic Phone costs $520, however it's not accessible in the U.S. at this time. A variant is being made for the U.S. market, and it will be accessible on the Red Magic store when prepared. Something else, it's accessible in Europe including the U.K. beginning on September 7. The telephone was crowdfunded through Indiegogo, and telephones have just delivered out to early benefactors.

Nubia offers a two-year guarantee on the telephone, and a year on the included charger. System accessibility hasn't been affirmed yet, yet the underlying reports recommend that it'll chip away at each system — yet we'll affirm that closer to the U.S. dispatch.


The Red Magic Phone conveys amazing execution, a solid battery, incredible speakers, and a perfect structure. The feeble camera doesn't prevent this from being a strong mid-extend cell phone.

Is there a superior option?

Truly. The OnePlus 6 accompanies the redesigned Snapdragon 845, a lovely structure, and a considerably more skilled arrangement of cameras. It doesn't have the Red Magic Phone's RGB strip, and its speakers aren't anything to keep in touch with home about, however it's the more grounded generally speaking telephone, and it'll additionally diversion to a great degree well. In case you're hoping to purchase in the $500 territory, the OnePlus 6 is an extreme telephone to disregard.

On the off chance that you're hoping to stay with the gamer-centered marking, look at the Razer Phone. It has indistinguishable processor from the Red Magic Phone, extraordinary speakers, and a presentation with a mind blowing 120Hz revive rate. It at first expense $700, however you can discover it on Amazon for $550.

Not constrained in spending plan, and essentially need an extraordinary telephone? Look at the Galaxy Note 9, or whatever is left of our picks in our best cell phones manage.

To what extent will it last?

We don't figure Red Magic Phone will look great after a considerable amount of utilization, as it has effectively scraped up after a brief timeframe. It's metal body is still more solid than glass, however you may even now need to snatch a case.

The Red Magic Phone will get Android 9.0 Pie at an unspecified date later on, however we don't know what different updates it will get a while later. In light of that, the Red Magic Phone's thin OS and incredible innards should last both of you to three years.

Would it be a good idea for you to get it?

It's hard to prescribe this telephone over the OnePlus 6. The main reason you ought to consider the Red Magic Phone over it is in case you're truly sold on the one of a kind plan, RGB strip, and gaming-center, and in the event that you do put it all on the line, we think you'll be fulfilled.