Realme 2: Not a Notch Above
The Realme 2 is the latest iteration amongst the company’s affordably priced phones. How good is it? Conchita Fernandes finds out.
Realme, which was until recently a sub-brand of Oppo, launched the Realme 2 in September. It features significant changes in design, as well as camera features. The phone now supports a notch and is supposedly the cheapest device to feature one. The display size has also increased slightly—6.2-inches IPS LCD with 720 x 1520 pixels. The phone also features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 octa-core processor, a downgrade from its predecessor.
Limited Camera Features
The Realme 2 features a 13MP + 2MP f/2.2 dual camera setup on the rear, with PDAF fast focusing and an LED flash. The dual camera has been optimised for shooting portraits with depth in the background, via the Portrait mode. The mode is however, not available for the front camera. There’s also a Time-lapse, HDR and Panorama mode, and users can record 720p and 1080p video at 30fps. The rear camera however, lacks a manual mode.
On the front, there’s an 8MP f/2.2 camera with a AI Beauty Selfie mode. This is how the website describes it… “Recognising 296 facial points, the 8MP camera analyses your age, gender, skin type and skin colour. The AI Beauty 2.0 technology selects from 8 million beautification options to pick out the most special and suitable one for you.” The mode offers six levels of ‘beautification’, where each level makes your skin appear smoother. When I tried it on myself, it not only smoothened my skin, but also lightened it considerably, to a point where I appeared soft was glowy. I didn’t enjoy the effect at all.
The edges of my photographs were visibly soft. The camera also doesn’t handle highlights very well, very often blowing them out, to an extent where details can’t be retrieved. What I liked though was the pleasant and not overly saturated colours in my images. The AF speed was also fast, but this wasn’t the case when shooting in low light, where I did experience some lag. Details also get murky when the light is poor. The Portrait mode was very average. In a picture that I had shot of a friend, a large chunk of her hair, which was supposed to be in focus, was quite badly blurred out.
Is It Redeemable?
The Realme 2 (costing Rs. 8990) confuses me because immediately after, the company launched the Realme 2 Pro (costing Rs. 13,990), featuring a dual rear camera with manual mode, better display resolution and processor. The only new features that the Realme 2 offers (in contrast to the Realme 1—a wholesome camera with a faster processor) is the notch, dual rear camera, better battery and a fingerprint sensor. But it’s not enough to redeem it, despite its affordable price tag.
|AT A GLANCE|
|SPECIFICATIONS||3MP + 2MP f/2.2 dual rear camera, 8MP f/2.2 front camera, 4GB RAM, 64GB internal memory (expandable up to 256GB), Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 octa-core processor, 6.2-inch display, 4230mAh battery, Rs. 8990.|
|WHAT WE LIKE||Colour reproduction that is true to the scene|
|WHAT WE DISLIKE||No manual mode, sluggish AF and poor detail reproduction in low light|
|WHY BUY IT||The Realme 2 is currently the most affordable amongst the flagship phones provided by the company.|
|CAMERA FEATURES||13MP + 2MP dual rear camera, no manual mode||20/25|
|IMAGE QUALITY||Decent reproduction of details in ambient light, poor in low light||22/30|
|VIDEO QUALITY||1080p video recording at 30fps, and time-lapse||12/15|
|HANDLING||Convenient placement of buttons, easy to hold||13/15|
|SPEED & RESPONSIVENESS||Overall, the phone responses speedily||12/15|
Tags: better photography, Cellphone Review, November 2018, Realme, Realme 2