Camera

Still shots are OK, but don’t have high expectations with the video recording quality.

The Xiaomi Mi Note Pro ships with a 13-megapixel main camera using Sony’s IMX214 CMOS sensor, which is also accompanied with a 6-element f/2.0 aperture lens, Philips 2-tone flash, and OIS. The front camera, too, is especially inviting with its 4-megapixel size with large 2-micron pixels. All of its gear sounds mighty delicious!

At first sight, the camera app is very reminiscent to the one we’ve seen on iOS, with a very similar interface, and even the option to control the exposure in a manner similar to that on iOS. And while it copies its design approach and simplicity, it does have quite a few settings that you can manually tweak, including a manual shooting mode. Speaking of different modes, you can swipe left or right inside the app to bring up various filters, as well as access different modes like HDR and Panorama.


The Mi Note Pro is quite a capable phone for most shooting situations. Detail levels are decent, and the white balance is mostly fine, though at times it does get colder than needed. Exposure could also be a bit better, as certain images tend to come out a bit darker than they should.

We’re pleased by its HDR mode as well, blending enough color saturation and exposure adjustment to the mix without being too artificial. Under low light, noise is kept in check, but the compromise is made in its softer details. Oddly, though, the 2-toned flash loses its effectiveness at around 7 feet – where it tends to wash out images.



Taking a pic Lower is better Taking an HDR pic (sec) Lower is better CamSpeed score Higher is better CamSpeed score with flash Higher is better
Xiaomi Mi Note Pro 2.8
4.3
551
522
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 2.1
2.7
842
No data
Apple iPhone 6 Plus 1.93
2.1
435
293
LG G4 2.7
3.9
357
311

Having 4K video recording adds some versatility to its arsenal, but the results from it are rather underwhelming. Normally, there’s a substantial amount of detail superiority that accompanies 4K capture, but there’s just this softness with its quality that prevents it from really standing out. The softness is something that manifests and becomes more problematic when switching to its 1080p recording. We’re also not fans of its scratchy audio recording, which is something that’s extremely distracting when you try and play back something you just captured.



Multimedia

While it’s usable for watching videos, its speaker performance is subdued and lacks depth.

The media experience on the Mi Note Pro is tailor-made for the Chinese market, starting from the gallery app, and going to the music and video players.

The gallery, for instance, is a fairly straightforward affair, and it offers you the nice option to back up your images in the Xiaomi cloud. This is a nice option (we did notice some Chinese characters when registering and setting up the account, but nothing that would make registering impossible for those who don't speak Chinese), and the phone backs up your images effortlessly, but we did notice that trying to retrieve or just browse through those images was a bit slow.


As for the video watching experience, it has no issues playing various formats and codecs of videos. It is also tightly integrated with an online streaming function that allows you to watch the latest Chinese soap operas and even full-on movies without paying a dime. The only thing missing here to solidify its package is just a handy multi-tasking element of some kind.

The music player is a very straightforward affair with no fancy options: it shows you all your music arranged in alphabetical order, and you can also conveniently view songs by files and folders. The speaker positioned on the phone’s bottom edge cranks out 75.6 dB of audio power, and while it seems good on paper, its quality in reality lacks depth – making it sound subdued.

Headphones output power (Volts) Higher is better
Xiaomi Mi Note Pro 0.814
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 0.609
Apple iPhone 6 Plus 1.014
LG G4 0.764
Loudspeaker loudness (dB) Higher is better
Xiaomi Mi Note Pro 75.6
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 70.7
Apple iPhone 6 Plus 71.6
LG G4 79

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32 Comments

1. hafini_27

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

I thought the Mi Note series has glass back. Pro version has plastic back?

2. Takeharu

Posts: 285; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

It's glass as well. Phonearena should fix that.

4. hafini_27

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

Maybe it is too glossy he thought it is plastic. Quite positive that this has glass back just like the standard Mi Note

9. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

Yes, it's glass. This guy clearly has no business reviewing phones.

17. neela_akaash

Posts: 1239; Member since: Aug 05, 2014

It's a Corning Glass on both sides...

3. abdoualgeria

Posts: 928; Member since: Jul 27, 2015

The battery its 3090 mah

5. Super.Vegito

Posts: 43; Member since: Aug 04, 2015

7.2? wtf???!

7. MSi_GS70 unregistered

Bcos it is overheating better is note not pro

19. arch_angel

Posts: 1651; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Battery Life.

6. hmd74

Posts: 540; Member since: Jan 31, 2013

Waiting for Redmi Note 2 review please review it

10. athos07m

Posts: 137; Member since: Apr 22, 2012

THIS! A.authority made a brief review but I'd really like to have a more complete one, heck even the usual Phonearena versus reviews would be great this time - maybe pit the 160USD Redmi Note 2 against the likes of ~USD500 G4, the ~USD500 Mi Note or ~USD400 Galaxy A7.

18. Martin_Cooper

Posts: 1774; Member since: Jul 30, 2013

No need for PA review. Probably the best valued phone on the planet right now.

28. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Other than Samsung and Apple that probably pay PA well. Other manufacturers should not bother to get PA to review their device. They don't have a consistent way of measuring devices. Take their PRO and CONS for example.

29. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

For example LG G4 has a score of 9 with no CONS yet XiaoMi Note seem to have a better overall screen. http://www.phonearena.com/phones/LG-G4_id9104 Its all about the back door deal.

8. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

I've got this phone and 7.2 is total BS !!! I'm not claiming it's a world beater or anything, but the battery is great and the camera is fabulous and it's fully in English except for a few apps you probably won't use. Forget this review and ask me anything you need to know for this 8-8.5 rated phone.

11. hafini_27

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

I am quite fond of this phone's design and MIUI. Can you clarify some of my questions: - Does the phone overheat uncomfortably or slow down when playing games or multitasking for extended period of time - What is your average SOT and using habit ? - Does it have an international ROM version or any conflics when using Google services like Google Play, Email, Google Now ? - Does its Hi-fi audio make noticeable differences when listening to music with earphones and how is the speaker quality ? - How much user storage is available out of the box ? - Any strange apps crashes ? - Does it have notification Led ? - Does Xiaomi update the software regularly ? MIUI 7 ? Sorry if I ask too much. Many thanks ^^.

12. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

1) I don't deny it gets rather toasty, but I cannot say I have done any 'excessive' gaming. Only in stints of 20 to 30 minutes and haven't noticed any slowdown. 2) Guess I'm just Joe Average when it comes to use. Screen is probably on for several hours a day with messaging and games and calls etc... Unplugging at 8am I still find myself with about 10-20% left when I'm ready for sleep at about 11 or 12pm. 3) My phone is entirely in English except for a few of the China Xiaomi Apps. Once Google Services are installed, all Maps, Translator, Camera etc etc work flawlessly. 4) I'm no audiophile, but I have no issues with the sound. Using my Xiaomi Piston2 headphones gives a fantastic and deep experience but I cannot really discern any difference with hi-fi audio on or off. The speaker is acceptable to me... other opinions may vary :) 5) 58.78gb available according to my Storage section. 6) Ummmm..... MIUI certainly has the occasional quirk. But nothing deal breaking or serious or anything that should annoy anyone for more than a few seconds when one happens. 7) Yes, an LED of many colours. 8) I'm seeing a software update notice every couple of weeks. MIUI is VERY well supported if you check out the en.mui.com forums and such. MIUI7 not with me just yet tho. Still rocking the still rather swish MIUI6 on Android 5.0.2 - Cheers

15. hafini_27

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 31, 2013

I read and watched quite a lot of Xiaomi devices reviews and they all seem to be really good for the prices. I myself own a Piston 3 and love it. Thank you for your answers, might check this out cause I love using different phones brands.

13. cpaun

Posts: 3; Member since: Sep 11, 2015

For me the Hi-Fi makes a big difference, both in volume and in sound quality. I have a Mi Note, not Pro, but they share the same audio hw.

14. cpaun

Posts: 3; Member since: Sep 11, 2015

Over 7 inch, you probably see the so called "Chroma flash". Maybe PA can confirm if it was enabled in Camera settings.

16. tanush

Posts: 15; Member since: Aug 26, 2015

Waiting for Honor 7 review.

20. arch_angel

Posts: 1651; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

So I Guess The 810 Is Responsible For Terrible Battery Life Or This Phone Is Just Poorly Optimized. Now I'm Very Interested To See How The Z5's Perform In The Battery Life Test.

22. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

The battery life isn't terrible, considering the screen and the power, it's extremely decent.

23. arch_angel

Posts: 1651; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

The Note 5 Has The Same Resolution, Screen Size, And Battery Size As The Mi Note Pro So No Its Not Extremely Decent Its Extremely Terrible Considering The Alternatives.

25. MaryPoopins

Posts: 324; Member since: Jan 15, 2015

My point is that this article is full of BS from top to bottom. John V seems to have a beef against anything not Apple and my own experience with the battery shows a massively different picture to what's posted here.

26. arch_angel

Posts: 1651; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

Oh You Own A Mi Note Pro Then I Guess Your Opinion Should Matter Then, My Bad Didn't Know You Were Speaking From Experience. If You Say Its Decent Then It Is. And Yeah John V is Biased.

31. tpv27

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 08, 2015

You don't have to capitalise each word there chief.

21. fyahking

Posts: 1146; Member since: Jan 28, 2015

The iphone 6s plus will get a record 9.8 imo.

24. arch_angel

Posts: 1651; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

9.3 At Most.

27. alouden unregistered

How does a reviewer screw up the build? The phone is not plastic. I don't own the phone, but based on what I have read elsewhere, I really do not think this was an accurate or fair review.
Mi Note Pro
  • Display 5.7" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 4 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, Octa-core, 2000 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB
  • Battery 3000 mAh

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