Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus is Redmi 5’s big brother. But “Plus” stands for way more than only a 6-inch FHD 18:9 display. A faster Snapdragon 625 processor, more storage with at least 3/32GB and a 4000mAh battery. Even though both devices look pretty much the same it’s not only peanuts that make a difference here. Redmi 5 Plus is said to be the Redmi Note 4X successor, but in our opinion the Note series is definitely worth a more powerful successor which is still to come. We tested Redmi 5 Plus in daily use.
Rumours about Xiaomi Redmi Note 5
Some blogs claim Redmi 5 Plus to be Redmi Note 4X’s successor. This is due to a statement of a so-called “Super Moderator” in the official MIUI forum when he published one of the first Redmi 5 Plus reviews declaring that Xiaomi simply cancelled the name “Note”. This is not an official statement by Xiaomi.
The recent leaks announcing Snapdragon 630 and 660 for Redmi Note 5 are still valid and we simply don’t belive that Redmi 5 Plus should be the long-awaited Redmi Note 4X successor. A Redmi Note 5 has to keep up with Xiaomi Mi A1 and therefore has to house a dual camera.
This review is regarding Redmi 5 Plus as an alternative to Redmi Note 5 and not as Redmi Note 4X’s successor which should offer more than this.
|Xiaomi Redmi 5||Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus|
|Weight and dimensions||
Design and build quality
Just as Redmi 5, the slightly bigger Redmi 5 Plus pretty much copies Redmi Note 4X’s design. The rear is almost identical for all three devices. Redmi 5 Plus has camera, dual LED flash and fingerprint scanner aligned vertically. The camera juts out 1mm what makes the phone pleasingly slim with 8.2mm. Redmi 5 Plus is 75.5mm wide and 159mm long. Despite the 6-inch display it is still slimmer than a Redmi Note 4X, but noticeably longer. There is a big difference in terms of size between Redmi 5 and Redmi 5 Plus: Redmi 5 Plus is more uncomfortable in your pocket and can hardly be operated with only one hand. 180g make Redmi 5 Plus a rather heavy phone.
The biggest selling point is the 6-inch display in 18:9 format. It is just as big as Oneplus 5T on the front (case-to-display-ratio) and the bezel is very slim with 3mm. Above the display, there is a 9mm space, 11mm below. Thanks to 18:9 display you have to go without sensor keys and the additional display surface is covered with configurable on-screen buttons. There is a white notification LED above the display. The fingerprint scanner is fast and unlocks in 10/10 attempts.
Plastic on top and bottom of the phone ensures better reception and the metal frame even encloses the sides (in contrast to Redmi 5). Build quality is outstanding – as usual for Xiaomi – and can keep up with Xiaomi Redmi Note 4X. Power button and volume keys are located on the right side and consist of metal. The SIM slot on the left side can hold 2x nano SIM or 1x nano SIM and 1x micro SD (up to 200GB). Redmi 5 Plus, too, goes without USB type-C.
Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus has a 6-inch display with a 2160×1080 pixels resolution. This results in a 18:9 format with razor sharp 402 pixels per inch. There is a difference in sharpness between Redmi 5 (only HD display) and Redmi 5 Plus. Even though 6 inches may scare you at first, handling the phone is pretty much the same like Redmi Note 4X’s 5.5-inch display. Color representation is rather cool for a Xiaomi phone and white is displayed a little blue-ish. Brightness is sufficient with 450cd/m² and therefore you can comfortably use your phone outdoors. Viewing angles are stable as it is usual for IPS, however, some changes in color can be noticed. In this aspect Redmi 5 Plus scores lower than Redmi 5 and Redmi Note 4X that simply don’t have any changes in colors.
The display feels great with its 2.5D glass and almost melts into the frame. The finger glides smoothly across the surface and the glass is not as prone to fingermarks as other phones. The 10-point touchscreen reacts fast and is very precise. Redmi 5 Plus has a scratch-resistant display, even though Gorilla glass is not mentioned in the descriptions. Those who are looking for a 6-inch display with an up-to-date 18:9 format won’t find any alternative to this great quality.
Performance and operating system
Redmi 5 Plus houses our favorite processor: Snapdragon 625. The octa-core clocks at 8 x 2.0GHz and is supported by an Adreno 506 GPU and (on our device) by a 4/64GB storage. There is also a version with 3/32GB. Slowly I’m getting tired of writing about the combination of the processor and MIUI, but let’s go: Snapdragon 625 combines the perfect middle-class performance with an outstanding energy efficiency. Redmi 5’s Snapdragon 450 is based on the same manufacturing process and the CPU is almost the same. This is why the performance is basically the same for Redmi 5 and Redmi 5 Plus.Antutu Result Geekbench Multi Result Geekbench Single Result 3D Mark Result
Redmi 5 Plus easily handles every task like surfing, WhatsApp or videos with a high speed. Normal users most probably won’t need any additional speed and even demanding 3D games are handled by SD625 with ease. In daily use maybe Asphalt 8 might cause lags. Redmi 5 Plus scored reasonable 63,300 points in the Antutu benchmark. The most recent MIUI 9 system is based on Android 7.1 and makes Redmi 5 Plus just as fast as Redmi Note 4X. The 4GB of RAM make a good speed of 5.4GB/s and the 64GB storage is pretty amazing with a reading/writing speed of 216/212 MB/s.
Still, devices with an SD821/835 processor and UFS storage are much faster, but, of course are much more expensive, too. Normal users will be more than satisfied. Xiaomi’s MIUI operating system is not only very attractive in terms of appearance, it also offers a lot of additional features. You can love it or hate it, but you have to try it at least once! Those who want to enjoy the advantages of a Snapdragon 625 on stock Android should definitely go with Mi A1, which is a little more expensive but also better equipped. If you should choose a Redmi Note 4X or a Redmi 5 Plus is not a decision of performance. You can download the official global ROM at miui.com. If you buy the global version, the global ROM is already pre-installed.
Xiaomi does a very good job and uses for Redmi 5 Plus the same 12mp camera sensor as for Mi A1. In normal light, Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus takes realistic and detailed pictures. Image noise is kept to a minimum and the modification by the software is pretty much restricted: what seems to be very strong colors in Redmi Note 4X is rather realistic in Redmi 5 Plus. The soft shapes of Redmi Note 4X have disappeared and details are now visible. Close-ups turn out better with Redmi Note 4X. Redmi 5 Plus produces good and detailed selfies with realistic colors. Even in bad light the images turn out much better than Redmi Note 4X’s. Still, the camera can’t keep up with high-end smartphones’.
A feature Redmi 5 or Redmi 4X don’t offer: the possibility to record 4K videos. Sadly, the autofocus struggles occasionally. Slo-mo mode is now available. Trigger time and focus are excellent when taking pictures. Those who are looking for a good camera for occasional snapshots and videos in the low-budget price segment will be very well-served by the new Redmi phones.
Connectivity and communication
Reception is just excellent. During a phone call, noises are cancelled well and the calling partner can be heard loud and clearly.
The internal speaker is not as loud as in Redmi 5, but much more detailed and clearer. Quality is perfectly fine for this price, still, there is no bass and no stereo. The 3.5mm headphone jack impresses with a high volume and clear sound.
There is n-standard WiFi and 5GHz can be used. Reception is good all the time and data throughput is high. All usual Xiaomi sensors are included: acceleration, proximity, brightness as a standard. Additionally, there is a gyroscope, an e-compass and infrared emitter. There is an FM radio and an additional hall sensor for smart cases. Bluetooth 4.2 does a great job.
Xiaomi Redmi 5 Plus gets its power by a 4000mAh battery. Since the 6-inch FHD display consumes a lot of battery, Redmi 5 Plus is beaten by the smaller Redmi 5 in the PCMark battery test. Anyway, 12 hours of battery life are an excellent value. During the test period I had to charge my Redmi 5 Plus after 2 days with a DOT of 7-8 hours – of course, with a high strain of benchmarks, games and GPS navigation. Therefore, you can make it easily through the day without having to worry where to charge your phone next. Redmi 5 Plus is a real stamina champion, still, it doesn’t reach the battery life of a Redmi Note 4X or Mi Max 2.Battery lifetime Result Unit: hours
Charging time is a real surprise, since real Quick-Charge à la Qualcomm is not supported. With a QC 3 charging adapter you get from 20% to 90% in only 60 minutes. A real good value, compared to Redmi 5 or Redmi Note 4X.