Redmi Note 9S: a review of the new Xiaomi budget-friendly smartphone

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Is Redmi Note 9S the best smartphone with the price up to €200? Or you can find a better alternative (Redmi Note 8 PRO or Realme 6)? You will find all the answers to these questions on this post.

Redmi Note 9S Key Features
Redmi Note 9S Key Features

Redmi Note 9S Global is entering to Europe now. So what features does Redmi Note 9S have? Can it be compared to flagship phones? Let’s check.

Design of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Dimensions:165.8 x 76.7 x 8.8 mm
Weight:209 g
Body:Front/back glass – Gorilla Glass 5
Colors:Aurora Blue, Glacier White, Interstellar Grey
Fingerprint Sensor:Side-Mounted

So dimensions and weight of Redmi Note 9S are very similar to an older Redmi Note 8 PRO. It can feel a little bit large within the hand, but you can grip Redmi Note 9S just fine. Playing or watching videos using a phone of these dimensions is a bliss.

Redmi Note 9S by Xiaomi has a Gorilla Glass 5 on the front and back of the body. Same protection as flagship Xiaomi Mi 10 PRO has. Only that Redmi Note 9S has a plastic frame instead of aluminum. But this plastic frame on the Redmi Note 9S has a metallic coating, so it is non-slippery and feels good in the grasp.

One of the most interesting Redmi Note 9S design element is its main camera. It combines 4 lenses and shaped in a square, located at the center of the top back of the smartphone. If you are pushing its edges when the smartphone placed on its back, this design of the camera reduces the phone from swinging. Noteworthy that the main camera’s module is also covered by Gorilla Glass 5.

Redmi Note 9S
Redmi Note 9S

Display of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Screen:6.67-inch IPS LCD
Resolution:1080 x 2400
Screen-to-body ratio:84.5%
Peak brightness:450 nits

So, Redmi Note 9S has an LCD screen. It is a pity that it has no AMOLED screen, but remember that we are talking about a smartphone with the price up to €200. One of the downsides of this LCD screen that sometimes you can see very slight shadows at the edges of the screen and around the front camera. Although these shadows are very tiny and you will not spot them on the Redmi Note 9S daily use.

Noteworthy, that Redmi Note 9S has a larger screen than older Redmi Note 8 PRO, therefore and more pixels (6.67-inch vs. 6.53-inch, and 1080 x 2400 vs. 1080 x 2340).

Redmi Note 9S display has 450 nits of Peak brightness. And because of, that it performs rather poorly on the bright sunlight. In often cases, if sunlight is very bright, you will need to find the shadow. In which you will be able to see what Redmi Note 9S’s screen is showing.

Performance of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Chipset:Snapdragon 720G
RAM:4GB or 6GB
Storage:64GB or 128GB
MicroSD:up to 512GB
Write/Read:UFS 2.1

*4GB of RAM for 64GB storage and 6GB – 128GB.

Redmi Note 9S powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G. It is the stable chipset, very similar to Redmi Note 8 PRO’s Mediatek Helio G90T. Differences between these chipsets are minor. Although older Redmi Note 8 PRO performs slightly better than Redmi Note 9S, Note 8 PRO has some heating issues, that Note 9S does not.

Gaming on Redmi Note 9S is neat. You can run Call of Duty, PUGB, and other top games without a problem. Although, if you would like to play on “Ultra-high” graphic settings, you will only get 30 fps. On “High” settings of graphics, it is all good you can play on 60 fps. So as for ~€200 smartphone, gaming performance is outstanding.

Noteworthy that the AnTuTu benchmark score for Redmi Note 9S is about 280 k. It is a similar score to the older Redmi Note 8 PRO – about 290 k. So, as I said before, the performance of both these phones are nearly the same.

The good news is that there is a capability to upgrade Redmi Note 9S storage up to 512GB with a microSD.

Camera of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Main camera:48 MP f/1.8 wide
8 MP f/2.2 ultra-wide
5 MP f/2.4 macro
2 MP f/2.4 depth
Front camera:16 MP f/2.5 wide
Redmi Note 9S Photo,
Redmi Note 9S Portrait Photo,
Redmi Note 9S Selfie Photo,

Redmi Note 9S camera performs a little bit worse than Redmi Note 8 PRO. But talking about this, you need to take into account circumstances that Redmi Note 8 PRO is in the market for a while and had many camera updates, while Redmi Note 9S is a new phone and did not receive any updates yet. But still, it performs a bit better in low light conditions than Note 8 PRO.

Still, Redmi Note 9S takes a great, flagship alike, day shots. Pictures and videos are detailed and colorful. The downside is that Night-mode photos are weak, and there is no Electronic image stabilization on 4K videos.

The front camera is fulfilling expectations, and you get high quality, detailed selfie shots, and videos. This camera adjusts well to bright light and shadows. The drawback is that the selfie camera’s video recording does not have Electronic image stabilization.

Battery of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Battery size:5020 mAh
Charging:18W Fast
Battery life:About 14 h
Fully charges:2 h 20 min

Redmi Note 9S battery drain overnight on standby is about 4%. It is excellent because flagships like Xiaomi Mi 10 in the same conditions have about a 9-10% drain of battery. Moreover, according to the PCMark benchmark, Redmi Note 9S battery life is about 14 h for the standard use. It is a truly exceptional result, for example, flagships like Xiaomi Mi 10 last only for about 11 hours.

Although, Redmi Note 9S has a lasting battery, so its charging takes time. On 18W, it fully charges an empty accumulator in 2 h 20 min.

Sound of Redmi Note 9S

Redmi Note 9S
Loudspeaker:High amplitude ultra-linear
Headphone jack:Yes

The Redmi Note 9S’s loudspeaker is sufficient. Sounds are bright, full, and there is a little bass in them. Also, this smartphone has a headphone jack. So you will have no problem listening to music on headphones and charge Redmi Note 9S at the same time.

Is Redmi Note 9S is a best budget-friendly smartphone?

You can say that Redmi Note 9S is the best smartphone up to €200. But it truly depends on what features do you need in a smartphone. Redmi Note 9S has a stunning and exceptional design, tolerable display, decent performance. Moreover, it takes flagship alike photos and videos on the main and front cameras. For a budget phone, the battery life of this phone is enormous – you can use it freely 2 days to fully drain it. So, by mentioned, Redmi Note 9S is worthed to be the best budget-friendly smartphone up to €200.

What alternatives?

Redmi Note 8 PRO

Redmi Note 8 PRORedmi Note 9S
🔸a more practical design🔸a more refined design
🔸a bit better camera🔸more battery life
🔸slightly better performance🔸cheaper
🔸no heating issues

Redmi Note 8 PRO has a more practical design (more comfortable to hold it in your hand), a bit better camera, and slightly better performance. Although, Redmi Note 9S did not receive any updates for its camera, so we can not say yet if Redmi Note 8 PRO cameras performance are surely overtopping Note 9S. Moreover, Redmi Note 9S has a more refined design, more battery life, and is cheaper. Also, Redmi Note 8 PRO has some heating issues, while Redmi Note 9S solved these problems with its new Qualcomm chipset Snapdragon 720G.

Realme 6

Realme 6Redmi Note 9S
🔸90 Hz Display🔸more exquisite design
🔸120 Hz touch-sensing Display🔸better performance
🔸fully charged in up to 1 h🔸superior main camera
🔸much longer battery life

Realme 6 is in the same price range as Redmi Note 9S. Although it has a better display refresh rate – 90 Hz and 120 Hz touch-sensing. Also, Realme 6 charging is much faster – with 30W, you can charge it in up to 1 hour. However, Redmi Note 9S has more exquisite design, better execution, superior main camera, and much longer battery life (about 3-4 hours difference).


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Redmi Note 9S 64GB

Xiaomi Redmi Note 9S
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Redmi Note 9S
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Redmi Note 8 PRO
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