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Realme GT Neo 2 review: great gaming performance at a reasonable price

High-end gaming smartphones don’t come cheap – take a look at the Asus ROG Phone 5, which has everything a gamer might need, but for a price. The Asus ROG Phone 5 (First Impressions) is available in three flavors starting at Rs. 49,999 for the basic version and a whopping rupees. 79,999 for the top-end ROG Phone 5 Ultimate.

But most casual gamers don’t necessarily need this kind of hardware, which is why Poco developed the F3 GT (Review), which is currently a serious contender in the mid-range gaming space with prices starting at Rs. 26,999. Now we also have a smartphone from Realme with a similar price, but not flashy “gaming” like the Poco F3 GT. It has no launch buttons or RGB lighting and is available in both bold and subtle colors. So, does it satisfy the needs of the mobile gamer without gambling? And is he taking it one step further to become an all-rounder?

Realme GT Neo 2 Price in India

Realme GT Neo 2 is available in three finishes: Neo Green, Neo Blue and Neo Black. As for the options, there are only two to choose from. Basic variant with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, priced at Rs. 31,999, while the 12GB RAM and 256GB storage variant is priced at Rs. 35,999 in India. Both options are competitively priced compared to rivals that include the Poco F3 GT and Xiaomi Mi 11X. What is missing is the 6GB RAM option that would make the GT Neo 2 more affordable.

Realme GT Neo 2 design

The Neo Green Realme GT Neo 2 device I received for review has a unique two-tone glass back. The green part has a soft matte texture, while the two black stripes running across the entire panel are glossy. The rear panel, which is made up of multiple sheets of glass, leaves no fingerprints and makes this device quite comfortable to use, which is good for a smartphone that will mostly be used by gamers. The Neo Blue and Neo Black variants do not have such stripes, and while the former has a gradient, the latter is completely simple.

The back panel of the Neo Green Realme GT Neo 2 is made of two-tone glass.

The middle frame is made of polycarbonate, although it looks like metal and has a matte finish. There’s also a matte gray silicone case in the box, but it makes the phone a little slippery. The camera module protrudes about 3mm from the back and looks a bit like those found on the OnePlus Nord 2 (Review) and Oppo Reno 6 Pro (Review). This phone will wobble slightly when placed on a flat surface.

While I love the unique colorways (each one looks different) that Realme has come up with for the GT Neo 2, the Neo Green’s bright green finish is pretty loud and will get a lot of attention. If you don’t want to stand out, go for Smoky Neo Blue or Satin Neo Black.

Realme GT Neo 2 front panels ndtv RealmeGTNeo2 Realme

The AMOLED display of the Realme GT Neo 2 has a thin bezel.

The bezel around the display is rather thin. The 6.62-inch display is quite wide (which is good for gaming) compared to the Realme GT Master Edition and GT displays, and you’ll need two hands to use this phone. In terms of weight, the Realme GT Neo 2 seems lighter than it sounds – around 200g. No IP rating, but you have stereo speakers.

Realme GT Neo 2 specifications and software

The Realme GT Neo 2 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC. The phone comes with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of UFS 3.1 storage, but no microSD slot for expanding storage. There are two Nano-SIM slots and this phone supports 5G dual standby as well as multiple 5G SA and NSA bands. Communication standards include Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC and conventional satellite navigation systems. The Realme GT Neo 2 packs a 5,000mAh battery that can be charged using the 65W charger that comes with the package.

The software is a typical Realme UI 2.0 based on Android 11. It is very similar to Oppo’s ColorOS and has several customization options, including the ability to change and change icon shapes, customize the always-on display, and even change the thickness of the responsive font. … What I didn’t like was the annoying notifications from the theme store. Fortunately, they could be turned off in the settings. The phone also comes with several third-party apps pre-installed, including Netflix, Facebook, Snapchat, and Josh. With the exception of the FinShell Pay app, all of these apps can be uninstalled.

Realme GT Neo 2 performance and battery life

GT Neo 2 features an AMOLED display with Full HD + resolution and 120Hz refresh rate. The display also offers touch sampling at up to 600Hz, which is said to be useful when gaming. Display colors were slightly harsh, so I used the Soft Color mode for most of the review period. What I was missing was HDR support, which would have been a nice addition given the large size of this screen and made it much better for streaming video. The phone also has stereo speakers, which get quite loud and give you an immersive gaming experience.

Realme GT Neo 2 side display ndtv RealmeGTNeo2 Realme

The AMOLED display of the Realme GT Neo 2 has a touch sampling rate of 600Hz.

The Realme GT Neo 2 performed impressively in our benchmarks. It performed better than its competitors, scoring 7.19.508 points in AnTuTu and 1.005 and 3.152, respectively, in the Geekbench single and multi-core tests.

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor has enough power to run the most demanding 3D games without any problems. What’s more, the GT Neo 2 stayed cool even during long gaming sessions, thanks largely to its large stainless steel cooling system and a new “diamond thermogel” that the company claims is used as a heat dissipation layer.

A game mode called “GT Mode” is available in Realme GT Neo 2. As we saw on earlier GT series models, it increases the processor clock speed and touchscreen sampling rate (the display supports up to 600Hz). , but I did not notice any significant difference in response speed compared to disabled GT mode. The regular Game Space app also has a retractable console that allows me to tweak the swipe and touch sensitivities, but this is not a per-game optimization and will need to be adjusted between games.

Realme GT Neo 2 return button ndtv RealmeGTNeo2 Realme

The middle frame of the Realme GT Neo 2 is made of polycarbonate.

The 5000mAh battery of the Realme GT Neo 2 is by far the largest among the GT series smartphones. The battery life is impressive in normal use, and the phone easily lasted a day and a half, even in some games. The GT Neo 2 lasted an impressive 28 hours 56 minutes in our standard HD video battery test. Charging was also pretty quick for the 5,000mAh battery. The phone managed to go from a dead battery to 100% charge in just 44 minutes.

Cameras Realme GT Neo 2

The Realme GT Neo 2 is equipped with three cameras on the back – a 64MP main, 8MP ultra wide-angle and 2MP macro camera. Selfie duties are handled by a 16MP front camera. The camera app interface is similar to what we’ve seen on other Realme smartphones with Realme UI 2.0. The most important controls are just a tap away, and a neat slide-out tray on the left-hand side gives you access to more advanced features such as tilt-shift mode, frame selection and a timer for shutter.

Rear cameras Realme GT Neo 2 ndtv RealmeGTNeo2 Realme

Realme GT Neo 2 has three rear cameras

Daylight photos are generally quite saturated, but show decent detail and dynamic range. When switching between the main camera and the ultra wide-angle camera, there is a noticeable shift in color and tone. Colors generally vary slightly from scene to scene, so there is no consistency between shots, some showing natural colors while others look wildly saturated. Shooting pets and people indoors resulted in soft and colorless images with very rich colors. The ultra-wide-angle camera reproduces even less detail, and pictures also have a noticeable purple border in brighter areas.

Realme GT Neo 2 Daylight Camera Samples. Top: Main Camera, Bottom: Ultra Wide Camera (Tap to view full size)

Selfies taken with the front camera showed good detail and decent dynamic range, but were generally overexposed. Edge detection when using the front camera in portrait mode was decent at best. However, using the portrait mode with the rear camera resulted in good edge detection and dynamic range.

The fixed focus macro camera takes decent photos, but at 2 megapixels, they don’t contain enough detail. Close-ups taken with the main camera looked much better with more detail.

Realme GT Neo 2 close-up camera samples. Top: main camera, bottom: macro camera (click to see full size)

In low light, details were on the underside and some photos looked hazy. Night mode has boosted contrast, saturation and sharpness, which has resulted in some dramatic landscape shots, but you have to wait 3-5 seconds to shoot each one, so this mode definitely can’t be used for shooting people or pets in dim lighting.

Realme GT Neo 2 camera samples for low light. Top: automatic mode, bottom: night mode (click to see full size)

Daylight video quality was decent at best. You can shoot up to 4K at 60fps, but at these settings, the camera doesn’t offer stabilization, so the video comes out pretty shaky. 4K videos at 30fps came out fine, with good detail and stabilization, but like 1080p videos, they tended to be overexposed. In low light, video captured at any resolution looked hazy and dreamy at best.

Verdict

After using the Realme GT Neo 2 for over a week, it becomes clear that it is not versatile. This is mainly due to the camera’s unreliable performance, which fell short of expectations given its price tag. Simply put, you can get the best camera performance with Realme’s own GT Master Edition (Review), which is priced much lower starting at Rs. 25,999.

What you won’t get anywhere else is the hardcore gaming performance provided by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 SoC and this phone’s cooling system. It lacks the dedicated trigger buttons and RGB lighting that you would get with the Poco F3 GT (Review), but instead, this phone offers you a high-quality AMOLED display and excellent battery life.

With this price tag, it’s hard to recommend anything else to a mobile player. For non-gamers, there is the Xiaomi Mi 11X (Review), which also has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor and an IP53 rating, but drops display specs, battery life and charging speed in favor of a slimmer design. As such, the GT Neo 2 still offers a good price tag for Rs. 31,999, assuming you are satisfied with the average camera performance.



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