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Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S Smartphone Review

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S is the inexpensive little brother of the Redmi Note 10 Pro with a quad camera and a reasonable price tag of around £200 but how good is it at taking photos?


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Redminote10s | 1/200 sec | f/5.0 | 23.0 mm | ISO 200

 

Quick Verdict

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S is an inexpensive smartphone that looks great but its performance could be better. Images are great in conditions where lighting isn't too tricky to handle and when the smartphone doesn't have to work too hard to balance a wide dynamic range but overall, it's a bit hit and miss. The portrait/aperture mode is surprisingly good and the wide-angle lens produces the best quality images. You also have a decent amount of creative filters to play around with. If you don't want to splash a lot of cash and like to keep things simple, you may like the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S but if you can, pay a bit extra for the Redmi Note 10 Pro

+ Pros

  • Price
  • Size & Weight
  • Decent battery
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Good Portrait Mode 
  • Panorama Mode (lacking on the Redmi Note 10 5G)

- Cons

  • Image quality is hit and miss
  • Digital Zoom is poor 
  • The camera app is a bit basic

 

The Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S will most likely grab your attention for its price (around £200 and under over on Amazon depending on the version) but with a quad-camera setup, 6.43” AMOLED DotDisplay, 5000mAh battery supporting fast charging and 4K video, it could be a smartphone that stands out from the crowd for more than just its price. Shall we find out?

 

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Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S Features

Redminote10 | 1/320 sec | f/5.6 | 23.0 mm | ISO 200
 

The Redmi Note 10S from Xiaomi is equipped with a 6.43” AMOLED DotDisplay, Arc side fingerprint sensor, 5000mAh battery, 33W fast charging, dual speakers, and a quad-camera setup featuring an 8MP ultra-wide-angle camera for group shots, 2MP macro camera for close-ups, and a 2MP depth sensor for bokeh-filled shots. On the front is a 13MP selfie camera and you also get a 3.5mm headphone jack. Rear camera photography features include a 64MP mode, Night mode, AI Beautify, AI portrait mode with bokeh/depth control, and various built-in filters. You also have access to a panorama mode. Video is captured in 4K at 30fps as well as in FullHD and if you happen to splash the Redmi Notes 10S, it'll be ok as it's IP53 rated. 

It's also part of the Redmi Note 10 range that was introduced in March 2021 which also features the Redmi Note 10 Pro and Redmi Note 10 5G which we've previously reviewed. 

Key Features

  • Rear Camera: 64MP f/1.8 26mm Wide with PDAF, 8MP f/2.2 Ultrawide, 2MP f/2.4 Macro, and 2MP f/2.4 Depth Sensor
  • Front Camera: 13MP f/2.5 
  • Zoom: Up to 2X then digital up to 10X
  • Video: [email protected][email protected]/60/120fps, [email protected]
  • Display: 6.4" AMOLED Gorilla Glass 3
  • Dimensions: 160.5x74.5x8.3mm
  • Weight: 178.8g
  • Battery: 5000mAH (supports fast charging)
  • RAM/ROM: 64GB/6GB, 128GB/4GB, 128GB/6GB, 128GB/8GB
  • Audio: 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Colour options: Onyx Gray, Pebble White, and Ocean Blue

 

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S Handling

Redminote10s | 1/250 sec | f/5.6 | 23.0 mm | ISO 200
 

When you first pick up the Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S you'll notice how comfortable it is to hold and how well it fits in the hand. It's also pretty lightweight and its compact size means you can, just about, operate it one-handed but we always recommend holding a smartphone with two hands when capturing photos. Even though you can get a good grip of the smartphone, a clear plastic case is provided which will enhance your grip further and also protect the Redmi Note 10S a little better. For even more peace of mind, the Redmi Note 10S is IP53 rated so it's resistant to splashes and dust. 

The colour of the back of the Redmi Note 10S on test (Onyx Grey) is lovely, looking like a mixture of deep blue, black and grey depending on the light. It's a very modern colour but the plastic it's constructed from does attract fingerprints which gets annoying. The plastic frame/back also make the Redmi Note 10S feel slightly cheaper than some of its competitors but the rounded edges are nice, making it comfortable to hold. Talking of edges, the right edge is where you find the power/volume rockers and to the bottom is the USB-C port and 3.5mm headphone jack. The left side is home to the MicroSD slot. 

The 6.4" AMOLED display featuring Gorilla Glass 3 is bright and produces accurate colours. It's a much better screen than what's built into the Redmi Note 10 5G which is a little on the dark side and has a slight blue cast to it. 

You can swipe to access the camera app from the bottom right of the screen and it's very similar to many other camera apps built into smartphones with access to a Pro Mode, Night mode, 64Mp shooting mode, AI Beautify, AI portrait mode with bokeh/depth control, and various built-in filters along with a Panorama mode. There are also Macro, Tilt-Shift and Timed-Burst options but these are accessed from the top of the camera app rather than in the 'More' menu. Also up top is where you can toggle HDR and the AI function on/off and where the digital filters are housed. 

 

Redminote10s | 1/320 sec | f/5.6 | 23.0 mm | ISO 200
 

On the Redmi Nore 10S you have a 64MP f/1.8 26mm Wide-Angle lens with PDAF, an 8MP f/2.2 Ultrawide, a 2MP f/2.4 Macro, and a 2MP f/2.4 Depth Sensor that helps create bokeh when capturing portraits. 

To switch between the lenses, you can press the dots on screen or pinch-zoom which you also use to access digital zoom up to 10X. You can use a macro mode for close-ups but it's a bit tricky in operation and we didn't really find ourselves thinking 'I'll capture that with the macro lens'. To be honest, we'd prefer to see a telephoto lens built-in rather than a macro lens as these tend to be more useful but these tend to be something found on more expensive smartphones. 

In portrait mode, you can adjust the aperture by using the sliding scale which goes from f/1.0 to f/16. You can also apply filters when in portrait mode if you want to and make use of the smartphones AI which is designed to help improve your shots. When capturing landscapes, there's an option to switch on HDR, too, for improved dynamic range. 

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10S Cameras At A Glance:

  • Rear Camera: 64MP f/1.8 26mm Wide with PDAF, 8MP f/2.2 Ultrawide, 2MP f/2.4 Macro, and 2MP f/2.4 Depth Sensor
  • Front Camera: 13MP f/2.5 

 

Battery life - The battery is rated at 5000mAh which gives you plenty of power for a day of taking photos and capturing video. 33W fast charging is also supported.


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