Xiaomi Mi 11 review: Snapdragon 888 chipset, 120Hz OLED screen, 108MP camera, all at a good price Review

Maria J. Danford

At the substantial conclusion of its variety, Xiaomi presents smartphones with a excellent, if not detailed, assortment of innovative features at a aggressive cost. Last year’s Mi 10T Pro 5G is a excellent illustration. Now, the Chinese business is first to sector with a globally accessible handset run by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 888 5G […]

At the substantial conclusion of its variety, Xiaomi presents smartphones with a excellent, if not detailed, assortment of innovative features at a aggressive cost. Last year’s Mi 10T Pro 5G is a excellent illustration. Now, the Chinese business is first to sector with a globally accessible handset run by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 888 5G Cellular System, in the condition of its new flagship Mi eleven, which sells for a cost that implies one more superb benefit-for-money selection: €749 with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage, or €799 with 8GB/256GB.  

As Huawei’s stock falls thanks to the US ban on Google Cellular Expert services, so Xiaomi’s is growing, to the stage exactly where the business took third put driving Apple and Samsung in the Q4 2020 all over the world smartphone sector. But does the Mi eleven dwell up to expectations? 

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The six.81-inch Xiaomi Mi eleven arrives in Particular Version, Midnight Gray, Cloud White and Horizon Blue colors.


Graphic: Xiaomi

Xiaomi’s newest flagship cellular phone undoubtedly seems the section. My assessment unit experienced a backplate whose official color is Horizon Blue, even though based on the light-weight it is really reflecting, the color shades properly from gray by blue to lavender. The rear camera setup is substantial and unmissable, with the major lens sitting extremely proud. The three-layered riser is perhaps made to disguise fairly how far the lens juts out from the foundation, but when the handset is resting on a desk the camera bump makes a large protrusion, and tapping the display wherever on its left side leads to a wobble. 

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For some rationale, the 120Hz refresh rate is explained as ‘medium’.


Graphic: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The Mi eleven won’t have an IP rating for dust and drinking water resistance, which may be a stumbling block for some likely consumers. The absence of a 3.5mm headset jack is significantly less of an concern, even though once more it may irritate some persons. There is an IR blaster in the top rated edge, and amid the pre-set up applications Mi Distant allows you use this to regulate all method of IR-geared up units. 

The Mi eleven is large and moderately weighty at 74.six mm broad by 164.3mm deep by eight.06mm thick and 196g. The dimension is down to the substantial six.81cm display, which has minimal top rated and bottom bezels and curves into the prolonged edges. Corning’s toughest Gorilla Glass Victus provides protection. There’s a very small front camera lower-out in the top rated left corner that’s barely obvious. The AMOLED show has a resolution of 3,two hundred by 1,440 pixels (515ppi), and it is really merely outstanding, even though it is really really worth noting that I located it unattainable to attain throughout it a person-handed. 

The display has a greatest refresh rate of 120Hz, and an automated assortment facility that decides no matter if to deploy the whole 120Hz or drop to 60Hz. I would have preferred to be able to set this at the higher rate permanently, but that won’t seem to be an option — perhaps due to the fact Xiaomi is wary of compromising battery daily life. Oddly, 120Hz is termed ‘medium’ relatively than ‘high’. What is going on there, I ponder? 

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Handset makers like to discuss up the contact sampling rate these days — that’s the pace at which the display responds to finger taps, which is 480Hz for the Mi eleven. It is good to say that I by no means experienced to wait around for this cellular phone to do everything I requested of it — but that’s not ordinarily an concern for increased-conclusion handsets. Gamers are most probable to perceive a serious gain from a substantial contact sampling rate, together with end users of the in-display fingerprint sensor.  

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Looking at manner options incorporate a paper-like ‘texture’ and distinctive color options.


Pictures: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

My only serious display-similar grumble considerations Looking at manner, which pops the display into distinctive color saturations, and can also apply a paper-like ‘texture’. There’s a whole lot to participate in with in this article, and you can set a timed agenda for Looking at Method to appear on and off — but what you cannot do is have it kick in when a distinct application is introduced. As far as I’m aware only OnePlus handsets can be configured to transform display manner when an application is introduced. Arrive on everyone else, do capture up! 

Xiaomi rightly highlights the new Snapdragon 888 chipset with its built-in 5G manner (the Mi eleven supports two SIMs, by the way). The 5nm processor is supported by 8G of RAM and is rapid. Not shockingly it knocked every other handset I have reviewed out of the drinking water, delivering average Geekbench 5 scores of 1129 (single main) and 3704 (multi main). 

But do the highly effective processor and the needs of that substantial substantial-resolution display impact battery daily life? Of course, they do — and as pointed out before that’s almost certainly a person rationale the display refresh rate cannot be cranked up to 120Hz as typical. The Mi 11’s 4600mAh battery lasted for just thirteen hrs 29 minutes beneath the PC Mark Do the job two. for Android battery rundown exam, which is a prolonged way off the pace. Somewhat fundamental YouTube viewing for three hrs depleted a thoroughly charged battery by 19%, suggesting battery daily life of just beneath sixteen hrs. 

Battery daily life should not be an concern while, and all-day operation need to be commonly achievable. There is 55W ‘turbo’ charging for a speedy power strengthen if desired, as very well as help for 50W wi-fi charging. And if you are inclined to demand other handsets from the Mi eleven 10W reverse wi-fi charging is also accessible. 

SEE: 5G smartphones: A cheat sheet (cost-free PDF) (TechRepublic)

My Xiaomi Mi eleven assessment unit came with 128GB of internal storage, of which 20GB was applied out of the box, leaving 108GB cost-free. That 20GB is applied by Android eleven, Xiaomi’s MIUI 12 overlay, and a good quantity of pre-set up applications, a person of which — Mi Distant — I have presently pointed out. The applications are typically filed absent in folders termed Tools, Games and Much more Applications, with the latter containing staples like Amazon Searching, Fb, TikTok, LinkedIn and eBay, together with the journey reserving application Agoda and WPS Office. In other places you’ll find issues like the Opera website browser, a notes application, file supervisor and a Themes application for personalising the handset’s look as very well as ringtones. You can delete a whole lot of this if it is really surplus to specifications. 

The camera setup is highlighted front and centre on Xiaomi’s web site, and the emphasis is on top quality relatively than quantity. The in-display front camera is a 20MP f/two.two unit that’s able of 1080p movie at 30fps and 720p gradual-motion movie at 120fps. It also requires a excellent selfie, which is the major issue, truly. 

The rear camera array contains three cameras, the major a person remaining a substantial-resolution 108MP sensor with an f/1.85 broad-angle lens and optical image stabilisation (OIS). This is joined by a 13MP f/two.4 ultra-broad-angle (123°) camera and a 5MP f/two.4 telemacro (3-10cm) camera. The autofocus telemacro lens is particularly satisfying to use, even though I would have preferred OIS as well.  

You can shoot 8K movie at 30fps and 24fps, or 4K movie at 60fps and 30fps. 

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Pictures shot with the telemacro camera (left) and major 108MP camera at 30x zoom (proper).


Pictures: Sandra Vogel / ZDNet

The major camera delivered correctly excellent stage-and-shoot pictures, with a good deal of detail and excellent color, and utilizing the whole display to body pictures can generate some satisfying compositions. But you should not be fooled by the 30x (digital) zoom accessible for still pictures. As you can see from my woodpecker image, it is really not truly really worth the bother — and excellent luck keeping the camera continuous to just take a shot of even my sample’s top quality. A telephoto camera would strengthen issues, but would also appear at a value. 

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Graphic: Xiaomi

Conclusions

The Xiaomi Mi eleven showcases the new Snapdragon 888 chipset, with substantial-conclusion features – particularly the 120Hz AMOLED display — that enhance it very well. The camera array is very well believed-out (even though optical zoom would be welcome), and though battery daily life isn’t really stellar, thanks to the substantial-conclusion chipset and show, fitting in a larger sized battery would have been fairly a challenge. 

Xiaomi has accomplished very well to hit these types of a aggressive cost stage for the Mi eleven, and proper now it sets the bar for other mid-priced flagship-class handsets to aim at.

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