Full Reviews of Red Magic 9 Pro:
The Red Magic 9 Pro is one of the latest gaming smartphones to hit the market, packing some impressive specs like the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset and upgraded cooling technology. But is it the best gaming phone out there? This detailed review covers the pros, cons, and frequently asked questions to help you decide if it’s worth buying.
- Powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 processor delivers elite performance
- Large 6,500mAh battery keeps you gaming for over 5 hours even at max settings
- 80W fast charging juices up quick when you need it
- Vapor cooling chamber and internal fan keeps phone cool during intensive gaming
- Dedicated gaming features like shoulder triggers, performance modes and in-game toolbar
- Very heavy and bulky design at over 200g
- Average camera performance compared to flagship phones
- Lack of water resistance due to cooling vents
- Gaming focus means higher price tag
Design – A Purpose-Built Gaming Brick
The Red Magic 9 Pro features a very industrial, rugged design that feels sturdy enough to withstand some serious gaming marathons. However, with dimensions of 166.27 x 77.1 x 9.98mm and a weight of 235g, it’s a absolute brick of a phone.
The rectangular shape does make it easy to grip sideways for landscape gaming though. And there’s almost no curve or bump to the flat metal frame and glass rear, allowing you to really lock on with your fingers.
Looks-wise, the “Obsidian” black model I tested features some aggressive gamer aesthetics like random text, exposed screws and a vented pane showing the internal fan. So it’s really in-your-face about its gaming credentials.
There are also RGB lights on the back triggers and logo, plus along the side vent. These can all be customized to your liking for a bit of flare.
On the whole though, this is a beefy handful of phone that puts function over form. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing for serious mobile gamers looking for a purpose-built portable gaming rig.
Display – Smooth Refresh Rates & No Notch Interference
The display is a key highlight of the Red Magic 9 Pro, featuring a big and bold 6.8” AMOLED screen with small bezels and no notch or punch-hole cutouts to get in the way.
It uses a nice flat panel too, which I actually prefer over curved edges for gaming. The 2480 x 1116 FHD+ resolution is plenty sharp on a screen this size, while the 120Hz high refresh rate kicks everything up to buttery smooth levels.
What’s more, there are no compromises or blemishes to interfere with your full-screen gaming visuals. And vibrant HDR10+ support helps colors really pop when playing the likes of Genshin Impact.
Top brightness of around 1600 nits is perfectly adequate for outdoor gaming. However it falls short of the 2000+ nit panels found on certain flagship phones.
Overall though, this screen checks off all the key boxes for a premium gaming experience.
Performance & Cooling – Next Gen Power That Runs Cold
Of course, a gaming phone is only as good as it’s processing package. And the Red Magic 9 Pro delivers next generation power thanks to being one of first phones to use Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 mobile platform.
This upgraded chipset blows its last-gen predecessor out of the water in benchmarks. And more importantly, it provides a super smooth 60fps gaming experience in demanding titles like Genshin even at maxed out graphic settings.
Staying cool under pressure is often an issue on gaming phones. But the Red Magic 9 Pro brings the heat with an upgraded “Ice Cooling System 13” featuring an internal fan plus vapor cooling chamber design that keeps surface temperatures down to comfortable levels.
You can also manually crank up cooling power when needed. And the highly effective system is surprisingly quiet even on full blast.
This advanced cooling allows you to go all out for hours on end without worrying about thermal throttling or random shutdowns. And that’s exactly what you need in a dedicated gaming phone.
Gaming Features – Triggers, Performance Modes and More
The Red Magic 9 Pro doesn’t just rely on raw power. It also backs its gaming prowess up with a stack of dedicated software and hardware features specifically designed for gaming.
This includes high response shoulder triggers with vibration feedback, an unobtrusive in-game control toolbar and various performance modes to max power where you need it most.
The proprietary Red Core R2 chip also helps minimize main processor strain. While the physical gaming switch gives you quick access to your game library and settings menus at a flick.
Handy gaming assists like screen touch sensitivity adjustment, notifications blocking and charging bypass features round things out nicely.
Battery Life & Charging – Extreme Marathon Gaming
With great power often comes not-so-great battery life. But the Red Magic 9 Pro says “challenge accepted”, packing an enormous 6500mAh battery cell into its chunky frame. This allows for epic marathon gaming sessions even at peak performance.
I clocked over 5.5 hours screen-on time in Genshin Impact at max graphical and touch settings. That’s stupidly good for such an intensive 3D title.
The phone also supports a blazing 80W wired charging, juicing back up in well under an hour. So you shouldn’t be left high and dry for too long if you do somehow manage to drain this battery beast.
Camera Performance – Does the Job But Lacks Versatility
Let’s be real – you aren’t buying this primarily as a photo or video camera. And the Red Magic 9 Pro’s triple lens setup reflects its true focus.
The 50MP main camera utilizes a 1/1.5” sensor size plus OIS stabilization for solid clarity and focus in most conditions. And there’s a capable enough Night Mode available too.
Shots aren’t at the same level as premium flagship phones. But the Red Magic 9 Pro still packs in enough imaging chops to capture decent family pics or social sharing on the fly.
Just don’t expect wildly creative compositions or video chops beyond casual usage. This camera system is designed primarily for quick unobtrusive mobile documentation, nothing more.
Software – Clean Android 12 Build With Gaming Focus
The RedMagic 9 Pro ships with Android 14 RedMagic OS 9, topped with Nubia’s own RedMagic gaming interface. This offers a clean Android-esque experience free of unwanted bloatware.
You’ll have to make do without wireless charging or official water resistance due to the custom cooling design. But these are understandable concessions in a gaming-first device.
RedMagic OS does make it super simple to access and manage all your games in one place. Extensive tweakable settings cover everything from performance modes to display and touch response preferences on a per-game basis.
So if the gaming software experience is your priority over generic flagship versatility, I think you’ll find the RedMagic 9 Pro custom interface very well suited.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Is the Red Magic 9 Pro good for normal everyday use too?
Its heavy size and gaming focus mean this isn’t the most practical device as an everyday phone. But thanks to clean software and that gorgeous display, the Red Magic 9 Pro can still handle daily duties fine like web browsing, messaging, video binging and casual photography. Just expect to need two hands for basic use due to the chunky footprint.
How long will the phone get Android OS updates?
Nubia hasn’t officially confirmed an update policy yet. However we expect at least two major Android OS upgrades to be supported based on past Red Magic models.
Security patches may come at a slower pace though. So while the software should stay fairly up to date, don’t expect long term support matching a Google Pixel.
Is there a microSD card slot for extra storage?
Unfortunately external storage expansion is not offered on the Red Magic 9 Pro. However the base 128GB variant should have you covered for installing a decent number of larger AAA game titles and apps.
And the higher-end 256GB or even whopping 512GB models offer tons of room to grow your collection for years to come.
Conclusion – A Specialist Gaming Powerhouse
To wrap up this Red Magic 9 Pro review, there’s no denying this latest gaming phone is an absolute beast – cramming bleeding edge silicon and cooling into a unapologetically chunky frame.
While the heavy rugged aesthetics and average cameras clearly cater to gaming enthusiasts first, a clean software experience plus stunning unblemished screen make it surprisingly solid for general use too.
If you desire no-compromise gaming power above all else from your mobile device and don’t mind the bulky footprint, the Red Magic 9 Pro delivers dazzling specs and dedicated features you’d struggle finding elsewhere for under $700.
So mobile gamers who crave seamless Android performance should definitely rank this impressive gaming flagship among the elite options worth considering in 2023.