RedMagic 9 Pro – Review

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewI have wanted to get my hands on the RedMagic 9 Pro since I first saw it up for release at the end of last year. During my time at MWC 24 earlier this year, I was able to get a chance to get some hands-on time with the RedMagic 9 Pro and this confirmed that I wanted to find out more. After some exchanging of emails, I now have said phone in my possession and it is time to review it. So without further delay let’s dive into the review below.

Design

Here is a brief unboxing video showcasing the phone.

This is one of the biggest things when it comes to a gaming phone and the RedMagic 9 Pro (hereafter referred to as the 9 Pro). The phone has some very specific gaming cues. Time to take the tour around the device starting from the top edge.

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewOn the top of the device, we find one of the side-firing speakers along with an IR blaster for controlling IR-equipped devices. In addition to this is something that is a bit of a rarity these days, a 3.5mm headset jack is sitting up there on the top. We also find one of the pinhole mics and some of the many antenna line breaks.

Moving around the right-hand side we have a lot going on so let’s go from the edges in.RedMagic 9 Pro   Review On the edges, we have the RGB shoulder trigger buttons which can be configured within games. The RGB lighting can be set in different modes from the software which we will cover more later on. The trigger buttons support up to 520hz touch detection making them very responsive for use in games. RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewNext, we have one end of the fan channel, I believe this is the exhaust vent but I could be wrong. RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewNext, we have the volume rocker switch which has good feedback and is distinctive when compared to the sleep/wake/power switch. The next thing here is again a hint at the gaming focus of this phone as we have a dedicated home mode slider switch. by moving this switch towards to power key then the phone will enter into its gaming mode where you have all the toggles from various software-led functions. I will cover these more later in the gaming section of this review. The last thing of note here is the presence of another pinhole mic.

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewOn the bottom edge of the phone is another one of the side-firing speakers another pinhole microphone and the USB 3.2, Type-C with DisplayPort functionality, for plugging into an external display. This port will also support fascharing if you use the correct charger and the phone will charge at up to 80W giving a pretty good 0 to full charge time of under 35 minutes. We also have a dual SIM card slot.

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewMoving around to the left-hand side of the phone apart from the usual antenna break we have got the other end for the fan channel which I think is the intake end.RedMagic 9 Pro   Review

On the rear, we have got a fair amount of things going on alongside some graphical exuberance RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewIn the top right-hand corner we have a reference to this being the 9th Generation of RedMagic phones with a 09 that will illuminate when the phone is in gaming mode. Coming down from his but sticking to the right-hand side we have the “Win More Games” text written on the rear panel with the Redmagic Logo at the very bottom right. On the left-hand side at the bottom edge, there is again some text outing the phone brand name REDMAGIC and then as you move up the phone there are more text references this time under the camera array we have Ice Cooling System written around the middle section. above this is where things get a bit more interesting. we have what looks to be three camera modules in a vertical stack, however, this is not the case. The bottom of the stack is a very small but powerful fan. RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewThis fan will spin at a speed of up to 22,000 RPM and is fully customisable with RGB as well fitting into the gaming phone vibe very nicely. The fan can be quite loud when it is operating at max capacity but in normal use, it is barely audible over the background noise.. I have got is set to be one most of the time. I will hear it ramp up to full speed if I have it fast charging but otherwise it will just spin away pulling cold air through the cooling chamber for me.RedMagic 9 Pro   Review

Above the fan, we have two camera sensors which are both 50mp sensors one being an ultra-wide and the other being the normal aspect ratio. I believe that the lower of the two cameras has also got an OIS which is a first for a camera on a RedMagic gaming phone. RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewBoth cameras feature a 7-element lens and the sensors are from Samsung manufacturer. But that is not all as we also have an additional 2MP sensor off to the side sitting below the dual LED flash. This camera is there to pick up the macro shots duties as you would expect in this sort of set-up. Above the 2MP Macro camera is a Dul LED flash light which will also pull double duty as a torch if required.

A few things to note about the back cover is that this is incredibly slippy despite there being a texture to the glass panel which means that unless this is on a flat surface it will slip off things and make its way to the ground a lot. There is a clip-on shard plastic case included in the box but this does little to negate these inevitable tumbles. You can also buy an additional case from the RedMagic store but I cannot see this helping this situation much further. I have combated this by purchasing a skin for the rear panel which provide just enough grip to stop is sliding away from me all the time.

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewMoving around the the front of the phone is where we have the display along with the camera but we will come back to that in a moment. The display itself is really large and the panel under the Corning Gorilla Glass 5 surface is maxed out as much as possible. The screen is a 6.8 inches FHD+ panel and it is of the AMOLED variety. It has a brightness of up to 1600nits with a colour accuracy of △E<1. The Screen-to-body ratio is 93.7% which is one of the highest I have used recently, and it has a resolution of 2480 x 1116 with a PPI of 400. RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewThe panel has a refresh rate of up to 120 hz (this can be adjusted in software). There are a couple more gaming-specific stats as well that I need to share and these are that the Instant touch sampling rate is 2,000Hz, with an overall sampling rate of up to 960Hz multitouch. I presume that these are meant to indicate that it will pick up on detections of input a lot quicker in fast-paced games.

RedMagic 9 Pro   ReviewWell, that concludes our tour of the device’s exterior. But as with all phones, we also need to investigate what is under the skin of the phone, in the hardware section.

Hardware

Firstly here is a specs table as there is lot of stuff going on here.

NameRedMagic 9 Pro
DimensionsHeight: 163.98 mm
Width: 76.35 mm
Depth: 8.9 mm
Weight229 g
DisplaySize: 6.8 inches FHD+
Material: BOE Q9+
Refresh Rate: up to 120Hz
Overall Touch Sampling Rate: up to 960 Hz multi-touch Instant
Touch Sampling Rate: 2,000 Hz
Resolution: 2480 x 1116
Screen-to-body Ratio: 93.7%
Type: AMOLED
Brightness: 1600 nits max brightness
Material: Corning® Gorilla® Glass
PWM Dimming: 2160 Hz
Color Accuracy △E<1
Back MaterialGlass
ColorsSleet (Black)
Snowfall (White)
Cyclone (Black with Gold Accents)
Operating SystemREDMAGIC OS 9.0 based on Android 14.0
SoCQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
RAM12GB/16GB LPDDR5X
Storage256GB/512GB
ConnectivtyWi-Fi:11b/g/n/ac/ax/be (Tri-band 2.4G, 5G, 6G) with HBS support
Bluetooth 5.3
Battery6500 mAh Dual Cell
ChargingUp to 80 W
PortsUSB 3.2, Type-C, DP, Dual nano-SIM slot, 3.5mm Audio Jack
Audio FormatsPlayback: WAV, AAC, MP3, AMR, FLAC, OGG, APE
Recording: MP3
Video Formats3GP, ASF, AVI, FLV, M2TS, MKV, MOV, MP4, MPG, MTSTS, WEBM, WMV, MPEG, M4V
Recording: MP4
Image FormatsPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP, WBMP, HEIC
Output: JPEG
Unlock OptionsUnder display Fingerprint reader
Face Unlock
Network2G: GSM 2/3/5/8
3G: WCDMA B1/2/4/5/6/8/19
CDMA BC0
4G: TD-LTE B34/B38/39/40/41/42 FDD-LTE B1/B2/B3/B4/B5/B7/B8/B12/B17/B18/B19/B20/B26/B28A/B28B/B66/
5G NR NSA: n41/n78/n77/n38/n7/n40
SA: n38/n40/n41/n78/n1/n77(3600M-4100M) /n28/n3/n7/n8/n20/n5/n66/n2/n26/
NFCYes
Rear CameraResolution: 50MP+50MP+2MP
Sensor: Samsung GN 5 sensor 1/1.57
OIS optical image stabilization
7P lens
APL-coated anti-glare
Front Camera16MP, 2nd generation under-display-camera (UDC) Pixel Size: 1.12μm Aperture: 2.0
FlashDual LED
GPSGPS, AGPS
SensorsFingerprint, G-sensor, Electronic Compass, Gyroscope, Proximity, Ambient Light Sensor, Sensor hub
Cooling Features

ICE 13 Multi-Dimensional Cooling System
22,000 RPM high-speed turbofan
Cooling Air Duct
Type: Centrifugal fan
Number of fan blades: 59
Thickness of fan blades: 0.1mm

Other cooling components

Under-screen copper foil
Under-screen graphene
3D Ice Step Dual Pump VC
Aerospace aluminium mid-frame
High thermal conductivity rare earth High thermal conductivity gel
Motherboard copper foil
High thermal conductivity copper foil

Special featuresShoulder Trigger Buttons: 520Hz touch sampling rate touchpads
Game Space Switch: Toggles special game mode on or off
RGB Light: fully customizable lighting effects
In the boxREDMAGIC 9 Pro phone
Clear phone case
Power adapter
Type-C data cable
SIM tray ejector
Warranty Card
Documentation

I am going to focus on the aspects that will take this from a regular phone to begin a gaming hone as all the other hardware is very commonly seen on most high-end phones these days, there are however some exceptions to this which I will cover later on in my review.

  • Cooling system

As this is a gaming phone let’s start with the cooling system as this is the real headline grabber for this phone. As you can see from the specs sheet above the 9 Pro has got quite an elaborate system in place for cooling which is a combination of both heat dissipation foils and thermal pastes and active cooling via the cooling fan itself. The fan is a very small component as it is smaller than the diameter of a 5-pence coin. That being said it is very intricately built as it has 59 0.1mm fan blades that are capable of up to 22,000rpm to pull air into the cooling duct. As you will be able to imagine this cooling duct is where the main heat dissipation happens with the components that are generating the heat being located close to the cooling duct. The image below shows the various elements in more detail.

RedMagic 9 Pro   Review

You can see from the above image that the Snapdarogn 8 Gen 3 Chip is located on the underside of the cooling channel to give the optimum exposure to the airflow being managed by the fan. In addition to this, there is an extensive area of thermally conductive material on the midframe to help stop any heat coming through the display from the motherboard. All of this means that the *gen 3 Chip can run at higher temp fro longer meaning that it can push more calculations through. This in turn will mean faster processing of files, quicker video rendering and most importantly for buyers of this phone a better gaming experience with higher frame rates being provided in the game with more fluid motion characteristics etc. There is however one very minor downside to this and that is that when you have got the fan cranked up to max it is audible.RedMagic 9 Pro   Review

I have recorded this small clip to give you an idea of the difference between the fan on and off. I was using the phone plugged in whilst playing Asphalt 9 in the mode called Diablo Mode which is when everything it maxed out and the processor and GPU are both running at full power.

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