Realme Narzo 50A review: Camera upgrades, rest remains the same
Business Insider/Shadab Akhtar Rabbani
- The Narzo 50A is Realme’s latest offering in the super affordable series.
- While the camera has seen a definite upgrade, there’s plenty that could have been better.
- Read the full review to find out about its performance, design and everything that’s on offer.
AdvertisementRealme with its Narzo series makes highly affordable smartphones, and earlier this month, the company launched its latest addition to the series — the Narzo 50A and Narzo 50i. We are reviewing the Narzo 50A smartphone, which is the successor to the Narzo 30A that launched in February this year.
In this review, we will talk about the Narzo 50A’s overall performance and compare the specifications with its previous generation smartphone and see what’s new on offer. Without further ado, let’s dive in to find out more about the device.
The unit we are reviewing is the 4GB+128GB storage variant in Oxygen Blue colour, which carries a price tag of ₹12,499. In terms of storage, the base model is the 4GB+64GB variant that retails at ₹11,499. The other colour variant is Oxygen Green.
The Narzo 50A features a polycarbonate back with a matte finish and a diagonal stripe design under the camera bump at the back. The rectangular camera module at the back is massive and sits at the top left of the device. Oddly, the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner is integrated with the camera module and adds to its size.
On the front is the 6.5-inch display with a tear-drop notch, housing the selfie camera. The bezels are noticeable, especially at the chin. The right side of the device features both the power button and volume rocker. While the power button can be accessed easily with both hands, you have to make adjustments to reach the volume rockers.
The SIM tray has three slots — two for 4G LTE SIM cards and one for the SD card — and is placed on the left side of the phone.
At the bottom, it houses the USB Type C port for charging along with a 3.5mm audio jack and a bottom-firing speaker. The phone weighs 207g and the dimensions of the phone are 164.5mm x 75.9mm x 9.6mm.
Overall, the build may seem sturdy to some, but it is bulky and does not provide the most comfortable feel when holding it. However, the fingerprint scanner is accessible with the index fingers of both left and right hands. Single hand usage is very much possible with this device.
The display is not its most attractive feature. The phone features a 6.5-inch FHD display with a resolution of 720 x 1600 pixels, which does not justify the price. Its competitors like the Poco M3 and Infinix Hot 11S feature Full HD+ displays. The phone comes with a standard 60Hz refresh rate while some other brands offer 90Hz in the same price segment.
AdvertisementThe screen-to-body ratio is 88.7% and the phone offers a peak brightness of 570 nits, making it fairly visible under sunlight. Nothing has changed in terms of display from its predecessor the Realme Narzo 30A.
Even though there were no hiccups, media viewing and gaming on this device was just average in terms of the display.
In terms of performance, the phone is powered by the MediaTek Helio G85 chipset, the same as its previous generation device, Realme Narzo 30A. While there has been no upgrade in terms of the chipset, the performance is good. The chipset could handle most tasks very well from gaming, streaming or using social media apps.
The face unlock and the fingerprint scanner is highly responsive, adding to its decent performance. The performance is consistent for regular usage and I did not encounter any lag while loading apps or switching between them.
AdvertisementRealme markets the G85 processor as a gaming processor and rightly so, the gaming performance in terms of its processing power was smooth. I tried highly demanding games like Call of Duty, Gear Club and also a few lighter games like Golf Battle, World Cricket Championship and the output was more than decent.
Gaming on the device did result in noticeable heating and drained the battery much more than other applications, including streaming.
One thing you cannot complain about is the battery. With a 6,000mAh power rating, you get around 10 hours of screen on time with regular usage that includes gaming, streaming and using social media apps. It can easily last for two days, depending on the usage.
AdvertisementThe camera is one of the most important features in smartphones, and surprisingly we have an upgrade here when compared to its predecessor. The Realme Narzo 50A features a 50MP AI triple camera set up at the back, up from a 13MP dual camera set up in Narzo 30A.
The triple camera lenses include a 50MP primary sensor, a 2MP macro sensor and a 2MP portrait lens. In terms of photography modes, the camera supports 50MP mode, Night mode, Portrait mode, Ultra-Macro, Panoramic view and the Pro mode that lets users adjust the white balance, ISO, autofocus and click photographs like an expert.
Now talking about the camera performance, the images taken in daylight offer impressive results with clarity and sharpness. When there is notable contrast, the result comes out well with the HDR feature. The night mode helps capture enhanced images in low-light conditions. The photos I took had definite improvements when using the night mode than the normal Photo mode.
The camera supports capturing videos in 1080p resolution at 30fps and 60fps, 720p resolution at 30fps and 60fps, and in 720p resolution at 120fps in slo-mo mode. The video output was impressive as it reproduced natural colours and the image stabilization worked well.
As for the camera application, it is highly responsive and you can switch between the Night, Video, Photo, Portrait and 50M mode from its main menu but to access other modes like Panoramic, Ultra-Macro you will have to click on More in the main menu. Switching between modes is smooth and there is no noticeable lag.
AdvertisementThe front camera features an 8MP sensor with f/2.0 aperture. It delivers artificially enhanced output. The results are fairer than natural skin colour and some of the spots are blurred out. The front-facing camera supports video recording at 1080p and 720p at 30fps. I did not face any issues while video calling with this device as my face looked clear on the screen.
The video output with the front camera produced close to natural results in daylight but the output became grainy in low ambient lighting.
Overall, the camera performance is fairly decent and some of the results were comparable to the performance of the Realme 8i. Realme Narzo 50A for its price has a camera with striking performance.
The Realme Narzo 50A features realme UI 2.0 running Android 11 out of the box. The UI offers customisation options such as live wallpapers, shapes and sizes of icons, dark mode, eye comfort and others.
The phone comes with pre-installed apps such as Amazon, Prime Video, Josh, Dailyhunt, Snapchat among others. You should be able to delete most unwanted applications except for the realme’s system apps such as Calculator, Compass, Clone Phone, HeyTap Cloud and others.
The Realme Narzo 50A is an average device for regular usage and definitely not value for money, with better options available from other brands. But with an above-average camera module and a massive battery, it could appeal to budget buyers looking for long battery life and good camera performance. The chipset performance is decent.
For those of you who already have a Narzo 30A, you have most of what this phone has to offer except for the 50MP triple camera module.
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