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[Reviews] [Mi Product Review #20] [Device Team] Redmi Note 5A Unboxing and Review!

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12:20, Sep-14-2017 | From PC
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This post was edited by mitch002 at 15:53, Sep-15-2017

Mitch Product Review.jpg

Redmi Note 5A Basic Comprehensive Hands On: Dream Ultra Budget Phone
by mitch002


After the very successful debut of the Redmi 4A, Xiaomi wasted no time to release another ultra budget friendly device again for the Redmi Series. This time around, its not the 5 Inch display anymore, but its the 5.5 inch Redmi Note series joining the bandwagon. Now, many people really like to take a chance to buy the Xiaomi phone, but honestly not everyone can afford it, that's why the company released this model along with the Redmi 4A for entry level phones to satisfy the market looking for a Xiaomi quality phone at jawdropping prices. Lets just assume that the A in Redmi Note 5A stands for Affordable. Now there is 2 versions of the Redmi Note 5A to avoid confusion, there is the Basic Edition and the Prime Edition, we are tackling the Basic Edition for this review.

Redmi Note Series has far been know as a mid range phone, with its quality and price, nothing really beats it. The Redmi Note 4X was pretty much a huge success, after the MTK series of the Redmi Note 4, Xiaomi has finally deployed the Snapdragon Edition and was able to launch in India. Redmi Note 4, sporting the Mediatek Chipset was not allowed to enter India, due to some legal battles between the Ericson and Handsets Manufacturers using Mediatek Chipsets in India.


Redmi Note 5A Basic Specs Sheet
5.5-inch display @ 720 x 1280 pixels, 401 PPI, 70% NTSC Color Gamut, 450 NIT
Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 Quad-core CPU, Cortex A53, MSM8917
Adreno 308 GPU
2GB Ram
16GB Internal storage
Expandable via microSD, up to 128GB (dedicated slot)
13MP Rear Camera, f/2.2
5MP f/2.0 front-facing camera
Dual-SIM (Nano + Nano)
4G LTE, 3G (4G+ not available)
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n
Bluetooth 4.2, A2DP, LE
Wifi Direct, Wifi Display
Micro USB Port
3080 mAh battery
Android 7.1 Nougat w/ MIUI 8
153mm x 76.2mm x 7.7mm
150 g
Available in Gold, Rose Gold, Grey

What's in the Box:








Unboxing Video:


The Redmi Note 5A resembles a little from the Redmi 4A, the curve of the body plus the materials used on the back casing is pretty much alike. Now, there are 2 variant of this phone, one is the basic and the other is prime. The basic has a lower RAM as well as a lower GPU, no finger print scanner and lower storage to mention some. The main difference is the prime sports the Snapdragon 435 compared to the Snapdragon 425 on the basic variant. Right now we are handling the Basic Variant.



The front of the phone sported the 5MP selfie camera which is pretty normal for any Redmi Series handset. The 3 Capacitive touch buttons below does not lit up when touched, and another thing, the notification LED is color white.



At the back, there is the 13MP samsung sensor camera (similar to the Prime Edition) as well as the ever useful fingerprint scanner. This phone only deploys single LED flash bulb and sometimes its not enough to lit up some dark places.

The linings looks pretty elegant for a ultra budget phone, Xiaomi sure knows how to impress us with the way they design a smartphone even at a ultrabudget level.


On the right side of the camera, there sits the volume rocker as well as the powerbutton.


The top lies the 3.5mm audio jack, noise cancellation mic as well as the IR Blaster.


On the other side, there sport the sim card slot, which can accomodate 2 nano sims, as well as a SD Card. Now thats a first as well by Xiaomi. Thanks for listening to our troubles of using 2 sim as well as the micro sd cards.


Down there lies the micro usb cable, this unit supports USB OTG.

Snapdragon 425

We were able to fully test the power of this unit to the extent, running games and multitask, in my opinion this unit did a pretty good job in multitasking, as well as playing some basic online games. The flow of the unit is not as fluid as the Prime edition take note as we experience a little lag probably due to 2GB of RAM. We tried NBA 2k17, it was quite laggy and this was expected from this unit. Surfing, Chatting, Calls and Navigating all done at the same time and it was quite stable, it lags a bit but not totally clamping down the unit.

AnTuTu awarded a score of 35,110 points to the Redmi Note 5A Basic, which is a bit far cry from the 45,551 points from the Redmi Note 5A Prime variant. But Xiaomi made it clear that the Note 5A is definitely a ultra budget phone, not to be compared to the other lines of the Redmi Note Series. The 10,000 points difference is due to a lower processor and a lower GPU as well.


All Redmi Note 5A Basic ships in MIUI 8 installed, we were a bit disappointed since many have rumored that this unit would be the first to ship with MIUI 9 preinstalled. But like the Mi 5X, it shipped with a MIUI 8.5 instead.



The Redmi Note 5A Prime supports 10 different LTE bands, it's easy to switch to LTE network inside the settings but once your do the second sim will be running on GSM connectivity only. You can freely choose which sim you want to use your LTE data, since this is a Dual LTE, Dual standby smartphone. We have experienced no problem surfing using LTE or 3G in our home country in the Philippines as well as dual standby mode is working seamlessly. Wireless connectivity via Wi-Fi b/g/n is also smooth and it also supports Wi-Fi Direct. Wireless screen mirroring is also available via the Miracast protocol, tethering data is also working perfectly. Bluetooth 4.2,GPS, and GLONASS are all present. We also have a smooth navigation using Google Maps while cruisin in the city. 4G+ was NOT available on this unit as we were trying our best to achieve that connection but it was of no avail.


Here are the supported bandwidth of the Redmi Note 5A Prime as provided by the official website:

GSM B2/B3/B5/B8
CDMA2000/1X BC0
FDD-LTE B1/B3/B5/B7/B8
TD-LTE B34/B38/B39/B40/B41(2555-2655MHz)

Audio and Video
  • MP4
  • M4V
  • MKV
  • XVID
  • WAV
  • AAC
  • MP3
  • AMR
  • FLAC

Support H.264 / HEVC (Main profile), H.264 (Baseline / Main / High profile), MPEG4 (Simple profile / ASP), VC-1 (Simple / Main / Advanced profile) and other video formats, support PCM, AAC / AAC + / eAAC +, MP3, AMR-NB / WB, FLAC, APE, DSD, WAV and other audio formats


We watched some movies and experience was okay, sounds using Mi Headphone Light was good at the same time the movie rendered was above average. There is no poblem during watching movies or streaming music from Spotify.


The main reason why we keep upgrading to a newer phone is simply the camera, we love taking pictures, who doesn't? Now the debate is that how will the camera in the ultra budget Redmi Note 5A Basic fare? Will it surpass expectations? Will it fall below expectations? Manual mode on this camera is quite very limited to just white balance and ISO change, nothing more beyond that. This phone sports the Samsung Camera Lens both front and back. Behold the sample shots from the Redmi Note 5A Basic:

Unedited Photos:

Good Lightings

Dim Lightings


















Camera was able to grab some decent shots on good lightings, but on dark places, it is underperforming. Neither is the front selfie camera good as well

The manual mode lacks a lot of function that you can normally see in a Redmi Note series phone.

Battery Performance

We were able to achieve a good battery rating for this unit since its a Snapdragon (Qualcomm is known for their battery efficiency), on a normal day with normal task being done, the phone can last almost a day without hitting the charging dock. PC Mark Battery Stress Test result gave it a 11 hour and 7 minutes SOT, pretty not bad for a 3080mAh battery. This achieved 1 hour more than the Prime edition as the Snapdragon 425 consumes less power than the 435 counterpart. The only downside is that it does not support Quick Charge 3.0 and still sports the old micro USB charging slot.

More Benchmarks Just for You:
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Collage 2017-09-14 11_25_08.jpg

Collage 2017-09-14 11_25_35.jpg

Collage 2017-09-14 11_25_54.jpg

Collage 2017-09-14 11_26_17.jpg




It comes down to this, is this a worthy ultra budget phone? For me it really depends, if you are not the type of person who loves taking selfies, and only uses phone for calls and some browsing, this is already a good budget phone for you. If you want a more powerful device and a more decent front camera, I would suggest you buy the Prime edition as it has more firepower and a better front facing camera with LED flash as well as fingerprint scanner. For just an extra 200 RMB, you get a better phone of the same caliber. This phone is now available at Xiaomi China Webstore for 699 RMB.


Back Issues of Mi Product Review:

Disclaimer: Please don't send me any PM regarding any type of Sales related inquiries. I'm a Xiaomi enthusiast but not a seller of Mi Products. I'm just a hardcore Xiaomi Fan, one notch higher than many of you here. Also I'm a Tech Blogger in the Philippines and all my review devices are either bought by myself from Xiaomi or borrowed from someone for a short period of time.

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12:56, Sep-14-2017 | From PC
That's a suitable device for old people. It had large screen but still powerful for basic smartphone usage.


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12:58, Sep-14-2017 | From PC
This post was edited by Abhijith_ashok at 10:29, Sep-14-2017

I prefer 3/32GB instead of 2/16GB.. Thanks for the fantastic review

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17:00, Sep-14-2017 | From Redmi 3S
Very accurate and detailed review. Thanks for sharing.

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17:46, Sep-14-2017 | From Mi 5s
Great review, really detailed. Seems that Xiaomi wanted to enter the budget phone section, and it did.

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17:48, Sep-14-2017 | From Redmi Note 3
This phone looks really dope.

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17:51, Sep-14-2017 | From APP
5.5 inch HD display not 401 ppi...

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17:51, Sep-14-2017 | From APP
My redmi 3 (5") has hd display with 294 ppi

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21:15, Sep-14-2017 | Via mobile
Once more a fantastic review from the master.

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02:12, Sep-15-2017 | From Redmi Note 4X
Great review!! thanks

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