Realme 7 Performance Review: Can the MediaTek Helio G95 make a difference?

Realme 7 Performance Review: Can the MediaTek Helio G95 make a difference?

Subhrojit Mallick | 03 Sep 2020
HIGHLIGHTS

The Realme 7 launched today in India, alongside the Realme 7 Pro, priced starting Rs 14,999.

The Realme 7 is also the first smartphone to be powered by the MediaTek Helio G95.

We test the 5 percent GPU performaance boost claim.

The Realme number series of devices have always been one of the best answers to the Xiaomi Redmi Note series in the mid-range segment. The lineup challenged Xiaomi’s domination by matching both the price and features, and sometimes even setting a benchmark by offering features like 30W fast charging and a 90Hz refresh rate display. The Realme 7(₹ 16460 at amazon) series continues with the same strategy, and as expected, we get the regular Realme 7 and the Realme 7 Pro. Now, even till last year, the base model in this lineup has been a budget offering, targeting the Rs 10k-segment. But now, due to multiple factors, prices have shot up, and the Realme 7 can no longer be deemed a budget offering. It’s a lot more expensive at Rs 14,999, but is it also more powerful?

The MediaTek Helio G95 that’s debuting with the Realme 7 will give the impression that this is meant for gaming and high-intensity usage. The SoC specs, however, are almost identical to the previous MediaTek Helio G90T, which powered the Realme 6, except for a 5 percent boost in GPU rendering speed. A direct impact of this would be in gaming. So we ran a few tests and played a few games to gauge how well the Realme 7 holds up when the going gets tough.Now, if you want to know everything about the Realme 7 including the camera, battery life and the design, check out our review below.

What’s inside the Realme 7?

Realme 7 performance review

The Realme 7 is powered by the MediaTek Helio G95 SoC combined with up to 8GB LPDDR4X RAM and 128GB UFS 2.1 storage. There’s a 5,000mAh battery and a new carbon-fiber cooling system inside indicating it can handle sustained high performance. On top of the hardware is the RealmeUI based on Android 10 which Realme claims is well optimised for the new chipset and shouldn’t result in sluggish behaviour. Let’s see what our tests have to show.

Realme 7 Benchmark comparison

Realme 7 Antutu scores

With the MediaTek Helio G95 in place, the Realme 7 remains competitive among its rivals and peers on benchmarks. It does manage to beat the previous Realme 6, on all benchmarks and the POCO X2 on 3DMark Slingshot Extreme. But it’s the AnTuTu score that raises suspicion. The score is higher than all its rivals in the mid-range segment, even ones that sport more powerful chipsets inside. And considering the backdrop of MediaTek indulging in artificial boosting benchmark scores, we’re not surprised.

Realme 7 Real World Usage

Then again, the Realme 7 feels perfectly fine when using it. The side-mounted fingerprint sensor takes less than a second to unlock and take you to the homescreen, and majors apps like the camera, dialer and Chrome launches in an instant. However, these are still early days and smartphones usually require long-term usage to show signs of slow down. We did fill up the storage will the major apps and games to see if makes the phone slouch, but so far, so good. The 90Hz refresh rate display also helps make things appear smoother. We are testing the 8GB RAM variant of the smartphone, and there’s always a good 2-3GB RAM free most times.

Realme 7 Gaming comparison

Back when we were testing the Realme 7, we still had no idea PUBG Mobile will be banned in India. The news came in yesterday, and while the smartphone’s PUBG Mobile performance won’t really matter anymore, it was satisfying to see more mid-range smartphones hit 30 FPS at 100% stability with High Graphics. And the Realme 7 manages to do it at High graphics even. The 4-core ARM Mali G76 GPU clocked at 900MHz does allow a lot more graphical fidelity than most other mid-range SoCs, offering an experience that’s smooth and reliable. The textures, buildings and grass look rich enough for this segment, although the draw distance can be hampering to the gameplay.

COD: Mobile also hits ‘Very High’ graphics with all graphics-elements like Ragdoll physics, reflections, shadows, etc. enabled. As a result, the game doesn’t look bare bones like it does on budget smartphones, and actually is very close to the experience expected from high-end smartphones. And with PUBG Mobile now banned, COD: Mobile really is the best alternative to mobile battle royale players. And here, the Realme 7 scores high with 55FPS at 96% stability. Lower the graphics down a notch, and the FPS shoots up to 60FPS and stays stable.

To compare, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 also clocked 30 FPS with 100% stability on PUBG Mobile while on COD Mobile, the Note 9 was able to push to 58 FPS with 97% stability.

Realme 7 Sustained Performance

Finally, to see how the Realme 7 holds up when subjected to high-intensity compute loads for sustained periods of time, we ran the CPU Throttling App for 45 minutes to gauge whether there’s any thermal throttling and see how the new cooling system performs. Here, we have some bad news. The 45 minute-long session made the CPU throttle to 67% of its performance, which is certainly not a good sign. The performance started dipping 25 minutes into the test, and continued to decline heavily.

This indicates that while the MediaTek Helio G95 promises better performance thanks to a speed-binned GPU, it also heats up significantly enough to limit the performance. This is something that the benchmark apps are unable to bring out since the SoC is forced to run at peak speeds regardless of whether it can do the same in the real world. This is also why benchmark results should be corroborated with real-world performance tests to get a better idea of how a smartphone performs.

Verdict

The Realme 7 comes out as an excellent smartphone for mobile gamers, even though the market itself is expected to be dented after PUBG Mobile was banned in India. Nevertheless, the smartphone is able to handle intensive games with stable performance. The daily usage is also impressively smooth, and near-instant app launches, lag-free multitasking and more. But going by our test for sustained performance, the Realme 7 may not hold up when you are trying to do too many things at the same time.

Realme 7 Key Specs, Price and Launch Date

Price:
Release Date: 03 Sep 2020
Variant: 64GB6GBRAM , 128GB8GBRAM
Market Status: Launched

Key Specs

  • Screen Size Screen Size
    6.5" (1080 x 2400)
  • Camera Camera
    64 + 8 + 2 + 2 | 16 MP
  • Memory Memory
    64 GB/6GB
  • Battery Battery
    5000 mAh
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Subhrojit Mallick

Eats smartphones for breakfast.

Digit caters to the largest community of tech buyers, users and enthusiasts in India. The all new Digit in continues the legacy of Thinkdigit.com as one of the largest portals in India committed to technology users and buyers. Digit is also one of the most trusted names when it comes to technology reviews and buying advice and is home to the Digit Test Lab, India's most proficient center for testing and reviewing technology products.

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