iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: two routes to mid-range mastery

If you’ve got around $400/£400 burning a hole in your pocket and you’re looking for a mid-range smartphone to buy, then the iPhone SE (2022) and Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G have to be among them. of the conversation.

So which of the two is the better buy? It’s a tricky comparison, given that the two phones look and perform completely different from each other.

Both phones have their share of upsides and quirks, but we’ve come up with a clear winner – for most people, at least. Let’s take a closer look.

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: price and availability

The iPhone SE (2022) starts at $429 / £419 / AU$719 for the 64GB model. The 128GB model costs $479 / £469 / AU$799, while the 256GB model costs $579 / AU$569. £ / AU$969. It hit stores on March 18, 2022.

There are several Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G configurations, but not all of them are equally available. The base model, with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage, is priced at $329, though it’s not available in the US. The most common model is the one that comes with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, and this has a list price of $349/£319. There’s also a 128GB/8GB model for $379, but it’s not on sale in many regions.

iPhone SE 2022

(Image credit: future)

The Redmi Note 11 Pro is definitely the cheaper phone of the two, but its availability is a bit chaotic compared to the iPhone SE (2022).

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: design

The iPhone SE (2022) looks a lot like the 5-year-old iPhone 8, which is positively old in smartphone terms.

You get a phone with a prominent forehead and chin, a physical home button (although it doesn’t actually move), and a tiny 4.7-inch screen. At 138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3mm and 144g, it’s one of the smallest phones on the market.

We love how different it is from every other phone on the market, but let’s not pretend here. It’s an outdated approach, and we wish Apple had moved the lineup to a fresher design language.

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Compare that to the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G, which is a much more modern but also more anonymous handset. We hollow out the glass back, which isn’t a common feature in an Android phone of this price, but the frame is square plastic as opposed to aluminum, like on the iPhone SE.

A Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G from behind

(Image credit: TechRadar)

It’s a big phone at 164.2 x 76.1 x 8.1mm and 202g – certainly way bigger than the iPhone SE (2022), anyway. It also packs a much larger camera module than its rival, for reasons we’ll cover in the appropriate section.

While the iPhone houses a fingerprint sensor in its dedicated home button, the Redmi hides its own sensor in the power button on the right edge. It’s nice and fast, but no one beats Apple at this stuff.

Both phones give you stereo speakers, which is great to see at this price.

A final advantage for the iPhone SE is that it has an IP67 rating, while the Redmi Note 11 is stuck at a low IP53. The SE will hold up better in downpours and dusty pockets.

In a nutshell, the Redmi is bigger and more modern, but the iPhone is better built and uses more premium materials.

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: display

With such a small body and huge bezels, the iPhone SE (2022) screen was never going to be huge. At 4.7 inches, however, it’s really tiny.

Used iPhone SE 2022 on wooden background

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Plus, it’s only an IPS LCD panel, which means it lacks the vibrant color and contrast of its OLED rival. It’s also not too sharp at 750 x 1334 resolution and it’s not particularly bright at 625 nits, while its refresh rate peaks at 60Hz.

The Redmi Note 11 5G sweeps this round in every respect. It’s a 6.67-inch Super AMOLED with a resolution of 1080 x 2400 (FHD+) and a maximum refresh rate of 120Hz. Its brightness goes up to 700 nits under normal conditions and peaks at 1200 nits.

Bigger, sharper, brighter, smoother and more dynamic. It’s simply better than Apple’s dated display, as good as it was in its heyday.

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: camera

You might assume that the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G has the camera in the bag, especially if you just go by the facts and figures.

Xiaomi’s budget phone has a triple camera system for the iPhone’s single camera system, and the main wide sensor is a whopping 108MP compared to the iPhone’s pokey 12MP.

But in terms of actual image quality and reliability, the iPhone SE (2022) is far ahead. Thanks to Apple’s unparalleled image processing skills, combined with the A15 Bionic chip, the iPhone SE produces shots that our reviewer found “pleasing to the eye, color accurate, and often beautiful.”

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A Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G from the front

(Image credit: TechRadar)

“Overall, the photo quality of this mid-range phone can still rival that of competing handsets that sell for almost twice as much,” they concluded.

Smart HDR 4 and Deep Fusion techniques ensure these shots are much better than you might expect from such modest hardware. Additionally, Apple remains the undisputed king of video capture at up to 4K 60fps.

By comparison, the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G is underwhelming, given its flashy hardware. “We captured a bit too many blown skies, and it often eludes twilight scenes,” our reviewer observed.

While it could still capture great results, it just wasn’t as consistent as we would have liked. You’ll need to work more with the settings, whereas the iPhone SE is wonderfully fire and forget.

Still, you can at least take ultrawide shots with the Redmi, thanks to its dedicated 8MP ultrawide camera. Sure, the results are a little soft, there’s also an obvious drop in dynamic range, and you can’t use Night mode at the same time – but at least the option is there, unlike the iPhone.

The iPhone absolutely destroys the Redmi when it comes to video recording, capturing top quality footage up to 4K. The Redmi can only handle 1080p.

iPhone SE 2022

(Image credit: future)

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: specs and performance

There’s no competition on the power front either, with Apple’s phone again taking a clear victory. The iPhone SE (2022) runs on Apple’s A15 Bionic chip, which is the same one that powers the iPhone 13 family.

It’s enough to beat the best Android flagship phones, not to mention the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G’s modest Snapdragon 695 5G.

We found the latter to be relatively slow, even in terms of a mid-range Android smartphone. The Redmi specs also explain the crippled video capture capabilities of the phone as mentioned in the previous section.

Needless to say, while the iPhone SE can run Fortnite and Genshin Impact flat out, the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G is more of a mid to weak type of device.

It also makes the iPhone SE (2022) much more upgradable. It’s going to stay fast for years to come, while the Redmi Note 11 5G already feels like it’s reaching its limits in places.

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A Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G, with a focus on the screen

(Image credit: TechRadar)

CPU aside, the iPhone SE (2022) gives you 4GB of RAM and a choice of 64, 128, or 256GB of RAM. The Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G offers 4 or 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB or 128 GB of storage. Both phones support 5G connectivity.

Another win for the iPhone comes with software delivery. With iOS as standard, like every other iPhone, you know you’re getting a clean, sleek operating system with guaranteed timely updates.

The Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G comes with MIUI 13, Xiaomi’s clunky Custom UI based on the outdated Android 11 operating system. Our reviewer called it “mostly…pretty harmless,” which is damning with low praise if we ever hear it.

In particular, we found that MIUI aggressively shut down apps running in the background, which was especially annoying for background audio apps.

Used iPhone SE 2022 on wood background

(Image credit: TechRadar)

iPhone SE (2022) vs Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G: battery life

The small body of the iPhone SE (2022) houses a compact 2018 mAh battery. It’s bigger than the previous generation, but it’s still tiny by modern standards.

Add 5G connectivity, and it’s no surprise that our reviewer was often unable to get through a full day on a single charger. It usually lasted 12 hours before giving up the ghost.

In contrast, the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G packs a much larger 5,000mAh battery, which lasted a full day of heavy use without running out of juice. This was also with the display set to 120Hz.

The Redmi also wins when it comes time to recharge. Xiaomi has integrated a 67W fast charger, which will get you from 1 to 48% in 15 minutes.

A Xiaomi Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G from the front, in someone's hand

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Apple didn’t give you any charger with the iPhone SE, and it only supports up to 20W in any case. On the plus side for Apple, the SE supports 7.5W wireless charging, while the Redmi does not.

Take away

While the iPhone SE (2022) may look like a much more dated device than the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G, its performance, main camera, and software are on a whole new level.

Conversely, the Redmi has a much bigger and better screen, longer battery life, faster charging and the ability to take ultra-wide shots.

Overall, we have to give the iPhone SE (2022) the edge in a direct mid-range head-to-head. While both of these phones have fundamental trade-offs and the Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G is undoubtedly cheaper, it’s the iPhone SE (2022) that’s likely to offer more consistency and more value over time. of ownership.

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