Realme arrived in Madrid with three new products for 2019. After the Realme 5 Pro and the X2 Pro, it is now the turn of Realme X2 to be put through its paces at our editorial office. Available for less than €300, the smartphone has a lot to offer and is very interesting for the price. How does it perform on a daily basis? Find out in this full review.
- Good photos and videos
- Battery life
- Headphone jack, microSD slot
- In-display fingerprint sensor
- Ultrawide-angle is disappointing
- Poor quality screen protector
- Realme X2 Pro is even better
Realme X2 release date and price
The Realme X2 is available in a single version with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. The smartphone is available in two colors (Pearl Blue and Pearl White) from 29 October on the Realme website, Amazon and AliExpress website for €299. This is €100 less than the Pro version and €100 more than the Realme 5 Pro. The device is also known as the Realme XT in some other regions.
A modern design
As its name suggests, the X2 is a lighter version of the X2 Pro. However, aesthetically speaking, the price difference between the two devices does not really show. Compared to the Pro version, the Realme features a smaller 6.4-inch display but it still has a dewdrop-shaped notch at the front to accommodate the front camera.
The smartphone offers Gorilla Glass 5 both at the front and rear of the phone but its chassis remains plastic. This is not in itself very embarrassing since it is painted and you have to accept some concessions given the price of the Realme X2. You'll just have to be more careful with it to avoid scratches. On the other hand, there is nothing wrong with the quality of the finish and the glass, which clearly gives a premium look.
At the rear, the smartphone is just as elegant with pretty reflective effects when light hits it. However, the camera's lens protrudes a bit, which causes some instability when the smartphone is placed on a flat surface.
The feature that will delight many fans is the appearance of a fingerprint reader under the screen. It is also interesting to note that the SIM card slot may also contain a second SIM card as well as another microSD card. On the other hand, forget about waterproofing since it does not have IP68 certification.
In general, the Realme X2 has a modern and friendly look that meets current standards. The handling is pleasant thanks to its low weight.
A good AMOLED display
The Realme X2 has a 6.4-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 2340 x 1080 pixels. The pixel density is (almost) equivalent (403 dpi versus 402 dpi) as the one on the X2 Pro and is perfect for multimedia content or surfing the web.
The presence of the notch does not bother me, especially since it houses the front camera essential for facial recognition. A fingerprint reader is also available with a reaction time of 334 ms. This one is very effective but most of the time you will not need it because of the facial recognition.
The AMOLED screen provides complete satisfaction. It is rare to see this technology on devices priced at less than 300 bucks. Realme makes it possible to democratize this feature. As you can imagine, the contrasts are perfect and the colors well balanced. I must admit that I preferred to choose the Gentle mode rather than the default Vivid mode which tends to lean towards yellow tones a little too much.
The maximum brightness is sufficient for sunny days and the minimum brightness is low enough not to be annoying in total darkness. The only criticism is that the screen protector set by default is far too dusty.
Android 9 and ColorOS
Like all members of the family announced in October, the Realme X2 runs on Android 9 Pie with the manufacturer's own ColorOS 6.1 interface. Realme should quickly deploy the Android 10 update for the X2 Pro according to the manufacturer. The X2 should also benefit from this update.
Anyway, the interface (and experience) is similar to the Realme 5 Pro and X2 Pro. For the rest, the interface looks a bit like iOS but there is an application drawer. Gesture navigation is available as an option, as well as a gaming area, App Lock, and an FM radio. Some bloatware applications are preinstalled but they can be uninstalled.
On a daily basis, navigation is generally smooth. I never encountered any bugs but there have been two or three times when I have had problems with Bluetooth, especially when I was using car-sharing services and trying to unlock the vehicle. To learn more about this OS, take a look at our dedicated article:
A Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 processor
Under the hood of the device is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 processor coupled with 8GB of RAM. It is a mid-range chip derived from the high-end of 2018, a Snapdragon 845 with an octa-core, manufactured with an 8-nanometer process with two ARM A76 2.2 GHz cores and 6 A55 1.8 GHz ARM cores.
Not surprisingly, the Realme X2 is capable of performing all tasks, including those who use this equipment a little more than the target audience of the mid-range segment. The smartphone manages to run all games, including PUBG or Fortnite, and does not have any particular overheating issues. There is no problem with multitasking either.
Not surprisingly, the results of the benchmarks tests are therefore good and better than many of its competitors in this same price range. Xiaomi should be worried.
Realme X2 benchmarks test comparison
|3D Mark Sling Shot Extreme||3D Mark Sling Shot ES 3.0||3D Mark Ice Storm Unlimited ES 2.0||Geekbench 5 (Single/Multi)||Passmark Memory||PassMark
|Mi 9T Pro||5008||4156||73220||N/A||24438||75736|
A good camera phone
We are no longer surprised by Realme smartphones because they have so much to offer for the price. This X2 has a quad-camera which is composed as follows:
- A Samsung ISOCELL GW1 64-megapixel, f/1.8 sensor
- An 8-megapixel sensor f/2.2 wide-angle sensor, f/2.25
- A 2-megapixel 1.75 µm sensor for macro functionality, f/2.4
- A 2-megapixel 1.75 µm sensor for portraits, f/2.4
The camera application is identical to the one found on other Realme smartphones. Regular customers will feel at home and newcomers will easily understand the interface. With a click on the side, you can access the various modes, including the famous night mode. At the top, you will find the wide-angle sensor, the HDR mode or the flash.
In practice, the focus is fast and the rendering of the photos is surprisingly good . Colors are well represented and photos are rich in detail, which usually results in good quality shots under normal lighting conditions, but sometimes light is not very well managed. When the brightness is bad, the noise is much more present. The night mode allows you to obtain interesting shots without competing with the best on the market with more saturated colors, while Artificial Intelligence sometimes aggressively corrects certain details.
Admittedly, I expected a little more from the 64-megapixel sensor but I think Realme hasn't had enough time to perfectly optimize the software part yet. It should also be recognized that the sensor offers more detail than smaller sensors. Images taken with 64-megapixels show a significant increase in noise when the brightness decreases.
The portraits are also satisfying with generally quite successful shots. The macro mode will delight close-up fans. The wide-angle sensor tends to change the colors a little, while the image quality at the front is also largely satisfactory. The 32-megapixel sensor (f/2.0 opening) does its job well with lots of details.
For videos, you will find in both cases the 4K definition at 30 fps, FHD at 30/60/120 fps and HD at 690 fps. The Realme X2 is also good here.
A great battery
It is a non-removable 4,000 mAh battery that sits in this Realme X2. The device performs very well and provides better battery life than the Realme X2 Pro, a result that can be explained by a smaller and less energy-consuming display (60 Hz) and a less powerful processor.
In practice, the phone offers sufficient autonomy to last a day with rather intensive use (emails, YouTube, WhatsApp, calls...). With slightly more limited use, you can even get two days of battery life. By tweaking a few options in the battery settings, it is possible to activate the battery saver mode to extend the life of your smartphone. On the PC benchmark battery test, it scored a nice 11 hours 55 minutes with Wi-Fi and SIM connected and brightness set somewhere in the middle of the bar.
Charging is done via USB-C and benefits from the VOOC Flash Charge 30 Watts. This is enough to go from 0 to 67 percent in 30 minutes. The complete charge is done in a little over an hour (1 hour 15 to be precise). It's excellent but it's obviously behind the SuperVOOC 50 Watt version of the Realme X2 Pro.
Realme X2 technical specifications
Once again, Realme impresses with the price-to-performance ratio of its smartphone. While not as sexy as the X2 Pro, this Realme X2 offers a lot for its money. Its good battery life, excellent handling, and photo capabilities make it one of the best choices for under €300. However, if your budget is a little more stretchy, I advise you to choose the Pro version which uses the same ingredients while adding more quality to the camera and flagship features such as 50 Watt charging and a 90 Hz display.