Redmi 6A / 6 / 6 Pro Review!

 

So I have been using the Redmi 6 for some time now, took a little more time because I needed to try out all 3 phones. At first glance, it’s pretty different with the previous Redmi 5. Slightly different design, smaller display and also using Mediatek chip for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6. The most notable design is the Redmi 6 Pro or as known as Mi A2 Lite, with the notch design. To avoid confusion, the Grey color is the Redmi 6A, Gold color the Redmi 6 and Black color the Redmi 6 Pro.

Redmi 6 Family

Redmi 6 Family

 

Design and Build Quality

Let’s talk about the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6, the design is pretty much identical with the exception of a missing fingerprint sensor on the Redmi 6A. The body is definitely made of plastic, since it’s a continuous use of material and the lines are actually just grooves cut into the back. As for the Redmi 6 Pro, the back has a metal plate with plastic caps at the top and bottom for signals to pass through. The Redmi 6 Pro definitely feels heavier, sturdy and well built in my opinion.

Redmi 6 Speakers

Redmi 6 Speakers

Speaker placement is different as well, with the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 having it at the back, and the Redmi 6 Pro at the bottom. I can imagine people that uses phones on the table will experience some muffling and there is going to be an ugly hole for phone cases.

For the fingerprint sensor on the Redmi 6 and Redmi 6 Pro, the placement is just nice where the finger will rest naturally and unlock speeds are pretty quick. If you wish, face unlock is also available and works well too. As for ergonomics, the power and volume rockers are easily reachable with the thumb and as always, 1 handed is there if you need.

Redmi 6 protruding camera

Redmi 6 protruding camera

All cameras are protruding and is horizontal for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 and vertical on the Redmi 6 Pro. As for LED, it’s on the left of the front camera for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 and on the bottom chin for the Redmi 6 Pro. Colors cannot be changed and there are only 2 options for it. Also, there is a TPU case that comes with the Redmi 6 Pro.

 

Hardware and Display

The Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 display looks a little yellowish and the Redmi 6 Pro looks whiter. When looking at colors, likewise the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 has a warmer tone compared to the Redmi 6 Pro, which is more blue. If I’m correct all 3 uses LCD panel, and it could be different panel used or pixel density that is making them look different.

Redmi 6 slight different color screen

Redmi 6 slight different color screen

Following the Redmi 5 trend, on screen buttons replace hardware ones for a larger viewing area. The Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 has a 720 x 1440, 5.45 inch display with 18:9 ratio and the Redmi 6 Pro has a 1080 x 2280, 5.84 inch display with 19:9 ratio. In terms of sharpness and clarity, the Redmi 6 Pro wins in my opinion.

There are many variants of each model and just to let you know that I’m using 16GB / 2GB model for the Redmi 6A, and 32GB / 3GB for the Redmi 6 and Redmi 6 Pro. Based on experience, I recommend getting at least 32GB storage cause I keep running out of space for the 16GB Redmi 6A. There is also support for USB OTG and all 3 models also support micro SD card up to 256GB.

Redmi 6 SIM tray

As for SIM card, all of them support dual SIM. The difference is both the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 supports dual 4G but the Redmi 6 Pro does not. SIM tray is a little different as well, Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 has a shared SIM 2 with micro SD card. Whereas Redmi 6 Pro has a dedicated slot.

For WiFi connection, both the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 only support 2.4Ghz and the Redmi 6 Pro supports both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz. The Redmi 6 Pro also has an IR blaster at the top whereas the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 does not.

 

Software and Performance

Xiaomi decided with the Helio A22 CPU for the Redmi 6A and the Helio P22 CPU for the Redmi 6. The Snapdragon 625 was chosen for the Redmi 6 Pro. In my experience, loading of apps was pretty quick on all 3 models. There were some delay between them, and usually the Redmi 6 Pro loads the fastest. As for multitasking and RAM, 2GB wasn’t enough for me so I suggest getting at least 3GB to be sure.

Redmi 6 PUBG

Redmi 6 PUBG

As for gaming, again the Redmi 6 Pro loads the fastest. It’s not so obvious on video but comparing side by side, gameplay was the smoothest on the Redmi 6 Pro. It was a little laggy and sluggish on the 2 lower end models, especially the Redmi 6A. In PUGB case, the highest graphics setting is Balanced on all 3 phones. Just to note, it gets a little warm when gaming for longer durations, but no overheating.

Redmi 6 Pro front

Redmi 6 Pro front

Daily usage was pretty fine without any weird behavior. Calls were clear and network speeds were pretty good as well. As of this review, the software versions are Redmi 6A MIUI 9.6.6, Redmi 6 MIUI 9.6.8 and Redmi 6 Pro 9.6.17. Those are China ROMs so you will need to install Google Apps yourself. It’s pretty easy, just head to the MI App Store, search for Google, install this app and follow the instructions.

Redmi 6 AI Assistant

Redmi 6 AI Assistant

The current version is pretty similar to the MIUI 9 video that I covered, so just head over there after this video. With on screen buttons, you can use gestures to navigate the UI and Lite mode is a very simplified UI for elderly ease of use. There is also their version of AI assistant but it’s only available in chinese.

 

Battery

Both the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 has a 3000 mAh battery and the Redmi 6 Pro a 4000 mAh battery. Had about 25%-35% battery for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 and 27%-45% battery for the Redmi 6 Pro at the end of each day. There is a battery saver mode to extend battery life if you ever need it.

Redmi 6 Charger

Redmi 6 Charger

The supplied charger is rated 5V/2A for the Redmi 6 Pro and 5V/1A for the other 2. You can check out the battery video that I did in the description box below but it took around 2.5 hours for the Redmi 6 Pro and 3 hours for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 to charge from 0-100%.

 

Camera

A single 13MP camera is on the Redmi 6A, and dual 13MP and 5MP camera on the Redmi 6 and Redmi 6 Pro. Camera options are the same with modes like Panorama and Tilt Shift. As usual, tap the triple circle icon for camera filters.

Redmi 6 camera modes

Redmi 6 camera modes

Day shots are pretty good on all 3 devices but the Redmi 6A colors seems to be slightly more dull. HDR does pretty okay for brightening up photos. But there seems to be an issue with HHT night mode for the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6. No matter what settings I tried, the photos will be very dark. If anyone knows the reason please let me know. Other than that, I feel the Redmi 6 Pro takes the best night shots.

As for macro shots, all are pretty decent and needs to be a distance of around 10-15cm to be clear. Camera manual and auto focus speeds are pretty much the same in daylight and much slower in low light. Manual mode is different, Redmi 6 Pro is missing Focus and Shutter speed. Portrait mode is not available on the Redmi 6A.

Redmi 6 Manual mode

Redmi 6 Manual mode

For video recording, it’s able to record up to 1080p and Redmi 6 Pro support up to 60fps. There is no OIS but the image stabilization does a pretty good job. For the front camera, Selfie Portrait mode is also not supported for the Redmi 6A.

 

Conclusion

Long story short, the Redmi 6 Pro is a much superior device among the 3. I feel the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6 takes a step backwards in design and performance is pretty average in today’s context. If budget is really a concern and you only need a phone for basic usage, you can consider the Redmi 6A and Redmi 6. The Redmi 6 Pro is very affordable and should be the choice of device.

Redmi 6 Face unlock

Redmi 6 Face unlock

 

Battery test video

MIUI 9 Feature video

Available here
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Redmi 6A
Redmi 6
Redmi 6 Pro 32GB
Redmi 6 Pro 64GB

 

Richard

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