Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro review: powerful and transparent smartphone

You can buy Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro here

Xiaomi is ambitiously expanding its offerings in the niche of flagship devices, and now we have the opportunity to purchase a “fat” Global version of Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro for a little more than $ 500, it is offered by the Chinese marketplace CooliCool. Yes, this is an expensive smartphone, but it is still cheaper, the flagships of its main competitors.

Xiaomi phones have something that people recommend to others. Nevertheless, the recognition of Xiaomi by users is mainly due to the low price of smartphones and the best price-quality ratio. Attracting the most demanding customers is completely different. The company’s first approaches to the top shelf were generally successful – in terms of components and capabilities, the most expensive Xiaomi smartphones did not differ much from the brand ones. How will the Mi 8 Pro show itself? Read in my review.

Characteristics of Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro

Size 75×155×7,6 mm
Weight 177 g
Ищвн Monoblock (without removable back panel)
SIM standard nanoSIM + nanoSIM, Dual SIM
Screen Super AMOLED 6.2-inch resolution 2248 × 1080, 402 ppi
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Architecture 2.8 GHz, 8-cores (4 × Kryo 385 Gold 2.8 GHz + 4 × Kryo 385 Silver 1.8 GHz)
Graphics Adreno 630
RAM 6 GB
Battery 3000 mAh, Quick Charge 4+
Memory card support No
Port USB (OTG support)
ROM 128 GB
Operating system Android 8.1.0 Oreo, MIUI 9.6
Access protection Fingerprint scanner built into the screen, unlocking the face
Connection LTE
WIFI 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2,4 Ggh и 5 Ggh)
GPS (Dual) A-GPS, Glonass, Beidou, Galileo, QZSS
Bluetooth 5,0 с aptX и aptX HD
NFC Yes
Main Camera 12-megapixel, 4K video (3840 × 2160), 30 fps, flash, additional lens – 12-megapixel
Frontal 20-MP, FullHD video (1920×1080), 30 fps

Transparent design

The design of the Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro is unique and is currently a distinctive addition to the background of the usual similar devices. Xiaomi refined the idea of ​​HTC – transparent glass backs. The entire back of the new phone is transparent, and only at the edges of the glass becomes darker. You can see all the components and connections through glass, or, it seems, at first glance. In the network you can find a video with the analysis of Mi 8 Pro, where it turns out, almost everything that can be seen through the glass case – the dummy. Real components do not look so elegant.

Of course, it is a pity that these are not real components of a smartphone, but it is worth recognizing that the phone looks beautiful. Remember the transparent HTC, its insides were so-so looking. Even a careful look at the body does not cause any signals that it might just be a piece of plastic. The red power button on the side is the cherry on the cake. Visually, Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro is one of the most beautiful smartphones on the market. At least until you take it into your own hands, because all the stains and fingerprints will remain on the smooth glass.

On-Screen Fingerprint Scanner

Mi 8 Pro is not the first smartphone with a fingerprint scanner on the screen that I am testing. The solution is undoubtedly convenient and allows you to coordinate the narrow frame of the screen with quick access to the reader, regardless of whether the phone is on the table or placed in the car holder.

Nevertheless, I must say that, although it looks super modern, the scanners placed on the screen are currently a little slower than the traditional ones we are used to, although most will not notice. But, it does not spoil the pleasure of using Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro, but rather the opposite.

Components and filling

Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro has one mono speaker on the bottom edge of the case, which is easy to close by hand in horizontal mode. Although this type of gadget has extremely loud driver. Even while listening to videos while cooking in the kitchen, I reduced the sound by several levels from the maximum volume, which I did not do with any other smartphone before. The device is great for video and negotiations, but the sound is a bit flat for music, branded smartphones with stereo speakers win here.

The two main camera lenses protrude slightly above the rear case and make the Mi 8 Pro phone swing slightly while lying back on the table, but the gadget recognizes all screen touches. The physical keys on the side faces are very pleasant to use, with an accurate, tangible click.

The biggest limitation in the Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro is the lack of protection against water and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. If the USB Type-C port for headphones gradually becomes the standard for expensive models, the lack of sealing is difficult to justify.

Great screen

Phone Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro received a 6.21-inch AMOLED-display with a resolution of 2248 × 1080 pixels and a pixel density of 402 PPI. The screen is compatible with HDR10 and DCI-P3.

Panel parameters correspond to the top shelf. AMOLED provides high contrast and rich colors. Brightness adjustment with a wide range, provided a high maximum value. I have nothing bad to say about the viewing angles. Compared with the flagships from other manufacturers, the QHD resolution, also called 2K, is absent here.

In the display settings there is a reading mode, a reduction in blue light, as well as contrast and color temperature. Screen Mi 8 Pro has a wide cutout, partly due to the system of infrared facial recognition. As a result, there is not much space for notification icons, which for some reason are not yet displayed even in the remaining space.

CPU and performance

Recently, Xiaomi has gained even more popularity due to the high specifications in the low-priced Pocophone F1. The Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro also has a Snapdragon 845 processor with 4 × 2.8 GHz and 4 × 1.8 GHz cores. Responsible for the graphics is the fast Adreno 630 chipset. All this is supported by 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB for the system and user files (there are less). It is a pity that the manufacturer here refused to support memory cards, but there is a double SIM card slot.

We already know the Snapdragon 845 well, and we know what results we can expect from it. In the case of Mi 8 Pro, GeekBench 4 scores were 1808 points for one core and 7601 points for the sum of all cores. In Antutu, the smartphone received 287,938 points, ranking 6th in the overall rating. The Androbench test of the speed of the integrated memory with sequential readings showed 727 MB / s and with a sequential write of 204 MB / s.

Operating system

Smartphone Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro is running the operating system Android 8.1 with the shell MIUI Global 9.6. While phone manufacturers are not in a hurry to transfer their devices to Android 9, and devices that offer the latest Google OS on the day of the premiere can be counted on fingers.

Everyone who is familiar with the MIUI interface from other Xiaomi smartphones will feel at home. Nevertheless, users of pure Android or shells from other manufacturers will have to get used to the settings and some features of the Mi 8 Pro.

To the left of the main desktop, instead of the Google helper, we have hidden several shortcuts with system functions, such as clearing the memory, control panel, notes, calendar events. By default, all icons of installed applications are placed on the desktop. System applications include: browser, gallery, music, control panel, calculator, clock, voice recorder, notebook, scanner, compass, weather, calendar, notes, MIUI help and file manager.

In the system settings, you can replace the screen buttons with gestures or hide the designation with a black background. MIUI also provides the ability to clone applications if we want to connect more than one account to a client of a social network, and the program itself does not support such a function. You can also create additional space that allows software to be separated, for example, private and professional life.

I appreciate the convenience and features of MIUI, which are really useful, but in terms of aesthetics and layout, I prefer pure Android or solutions from other manufacturers. However, this is a matter of individual preference. In terms of stability and smoothness of the work, I have no complaints about Xiaomi 8 Pro.

Mi 8 Pro Cameras

Updated Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro has two cameras on the back of the case – with a resolution of 12-megapixel. Primary with f / 1.8 aperture, optical image stabilization and focusing using PDAF phase detection. The second camera offers a double approximation, f / 2.4, but without optical stabilization and phase detection. I always emphasize that the three-time approximation in Huawei is much more practical than the double in other smartphones. When you enlarge the image, the difference is clearly visible.

You can select camera modes by moving the screen from side to side, which is just above the shutter button. Available modes include: picture, video, short video, portrait, panorama, etc. In addition, there is HDR, and you can activate AI (AI – artificial intelligence) by adding automatic correction in the color scheme of images or choose one of the color filters. Under the settings button there are more options.

It takes time to “find yourself” in the Mi 8 Pro camera app. In manual mode, all the necessary settings are offered, you can even set the time interval, which is rarely found in similar software of telephone cameras.

Photo quality

The most important factor is the quality of the photo, in the past it was the Achilles heel of the best Xiaomi models. In the case of the Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro, everything is really good. Photos detailed and cutting. The tonal range is good and well supported by the HDR feature. Colors are natural, but not blurry. AI copes with the recognition of many scenes. In short, you will be satisfied with the pictures of this Xiaomi.

Compared to the Huawei P20 Pro, you may notice a bit more noise, the Mi 8 Pro does not have a special night mode and a triple optical zoom. On the other hand, the price of the Xiaomi gadget is clearly lower, therefore such differences are excusable.

Video shooting

The new flagship smartphone Xiaomi provides a wide range of video modes. 4K and FHD quality is very high. Both 4K and FHD modes are stabilized, although 4K is optical stabilization, while FHD has an additional digital one that is invisible when viewed during recording, but only after the file is played. So you can create great, 4K stabilized videos.

Mi 8 Pro shoots FHD at 120 frames, as well as slow motion video with the same resolution of 240 fps, although in the latter case the resolution looks interpolated from HD. The difference is that material with slow motion is immediately slowed down and saved to play clips in 30 frames, although normal FHD in 120 frames is played at normal speed.

Front-camera

The front camera Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro received a high resolution 20-megapixel and f / 2.0 aperture. The focus of the lens is constantly blocked, but in most cases it allows you to achieve high quality selfies.

Communication and sensors

LTE 1024/150 Mbit / s, WiFi AC, Bluetooth 5.0 and NFC are responsible for the connection. The location is determined using GPS, GLONASS, BDS, GALILEO and QZSS. The manufacturer reports two independent antennas and GPS modules to improve the accuracy of work in difficult terrain.

The package of sensors includes: gyroscope, accelerometer, proximity sensor, light, digital compass, barometer and fingerprint scanner on the screen. There is a face scan function using infrared radiation.

Autonomy Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro

Smartphone Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro got a 3000 mAh battery. Compared to other top shelf flagships, this does not make a special impression. Fortunately, the device copes well with energy consumption.

In a continuous test of a YouTube video stream with screen brightness set to half, Mi 8 Pro discharged the battery from 100% to 10% after 10 hours and 41 minutes. In other words, there is a chance to exceed 12 hours of continuous video viewing. This is a very good result. The recently tested Nokia 7.1 worked 8 hours. The result of Xiaomi is similar to Honor Play or Sony Xperia XZ3. Some competitors work longer, but this is a certain minority.

Conclusion

Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro is an interesting and noteworthy smartphone. As for the price of the device at $ 500, which is now offered by CooliCool.com, it is justified in view of its functions, if you can afford it. On the other hand, starting from the day of launch, the Mi 8 Pro is gradually getting cheaper and even at the start it was more accessible in comparison with the flagships from other brands. This is a huge difference.

Updated Xiaomi Mi 8 got a lot of remarkable features – an excellent screen with a built-in fingerprint scanner, a transparent back cover, high performance, a lot of RAM and good cameras.

For whom is Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro?

  • Who is looking for an original design.
  • Wants to have a fingerprint scanner on the screen.
  • Looking for the best parts and camera at a reasonable price.
  • For MIUI lovers and Xiaomi fans.

Who does not fit?

  • Not for requiring a sealed enclosure.
  • Not for those who appreciate pure Android.
  • Not for very economical.

What distinguishes the Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro – is a transparent case, which, although it does not display the real components, but it looks very unusual. In this smartphone, all the compromises look less problematic, so I recommend it for purchase, without a shadow of a doubt. If you can afford it, of course.

Advantages

  • One of a kind design.
  • Super loud speaker.
  • Fingerprint scanner in the screen.
  • AMOLED screen with great features.
  • Infrared and fast face scanner.
  • Flagship specifications.
  • Two GPS antennas.
  • RAM 8 GB and 128 GB for the system and files.
  • Additional practical features MIUI. High quality photos and videos.
  • Stabilization of both FHD and 4K records.
  • Slow-mo in FHD 240 frames per second.
  • Camera app with Ai and many options. 12 hours of video from YouTube on one battery charge.
  • The price is lower than most competitors.

Disadvantages

  • No water protection.
  • No 3.5 headphone jack.
  • Monaural, not stereo speakers.
  • No memory card support.
  • There is no video recording at 60 frames per second.

 

You can buy Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro here