With each passing day, the sub-Rs 30,000/- price segment is getting competitive with OEMs targeting it heavily. There are plenty of smartphones in this segment including some with high-octane specifications. Realme GT Master Edition is a beefed-up version in the midrange sector with a unique suitcase-inspired design that I have explained below. The phone brings the new Snapdragon 778G SoC on board but how does it perform when put against its competitors?
Is it worth it? Here’s a detailed hands-on review that I’ve penned after using the phone for almost a week so read along.
The majestic Realme GT Master Edition comes in three colour variants. You can either go for Luna White, Cosmos Black, and Voyager Grey. The base 8GB+128GB trim fetches Rs 27,999/- while the topmost 8GB+256GB fetches a price tag of Rs Rs 29,999/-. You can buy the almighty Realme GT Master Edition from the Realme India online store. Club offers listed on the website such as No EMI on selected cards, MobiKwik discount of Rs 500/- and so on. There’s free shipping and COD available on the website during check out. There’s a third 6GB+128GB variant too that should arrive in India soon.
Before we talk in detail about Realme GT Master, let’s have a quick look at the key specifications.
- Display: 16.33 cm (6.43 inch) Full HD+ 120Hz sAMOLED Display
- Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G
- Storage: 6GB/8GB, 128GB/256GB
- Software: realme UI 2.0 based on Android 11
- Rear camera: 64MP + 8MP + 2MP
- Selfie camera: 32MP
- Battery: 4300 mAh, 65W SuperDart charging
- Weight: 180g
- Dimensions: 159.2 x 73.5 x 8.7 mm
Now, let’s move ahead and see what makes the Realme GT Master a powerful mid-ranger.
Realme has always maintained a high status when it comes to the design of its smartphones. Although there are some mesmerizing designs exhibited by OnePlus, Xiaomi, Samsung alike, Realme hired designer Naoto Fukasawa to create a majestic-looking design for the Voyager Grey variant of Realme GT Master which resembles a travel suitcase. A suitcase is the most widely used item so that is what inspired Naoto. The back panel is vegan leather so it feels good to touch and hold.
The other two colour variants i.e. Luna White gets a matte finish while the Cosmos Black has a dark copper tint to it. Hands down, all three colour variants look pretty flamboyant.
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The back panel also has a vertically stacked triple camera setup with three huge lenses and a flash LED adjoining them. Realme didn’t choose a humongous insignia this time and instead, the back panel has a Realme branding with Naoto’s signature and that’s all.
The edges are covered to enhance grip and one-handed usability but I am not everyone will be able to reach the top of the display without doing some finger gymnastics but that’s okay. Smartphone companies are adopting one-handed mode on a software level such as Samsung and OnePlus so I hope Realme joins the wagon soon.
Going forward, we have a SIM card slot and a volume rocker on the left side, and a power button on the right. There’s a 3.5mm headphone jack (yes, there’s a port too), a USB-C port, a primary mic, and a single bottom-firing loudspeaker at the bottom.
The display mounted on GT Master Edition is good and I have explained it more in the next section. For now, the display stretches over the front panel although you still have sufficient bezels around the edges, especially the chin. There’s a thick punch-hole cut-out as well and that’s pretty much all for this section.
The upper mid-ranger Realme GT Master packs in a 6.43-inch Super AMOLED panel boasts 1080 by 2400 pixels resolution and a 20:9 aspect ratio. The display arrives with a 120Hz refresh rate and a peak brightness of 1000 nits.
The display arrives with many chops including a 360Hz touch sampling rate, Widevine L1 DRM, HDR10+, and HLG to name a few. The L1 DRM certification allows the users to view content in FHD resolution although HDR is not available on Netflix. The panel is bright enough to be visible and readable even in harsh sunlight thanks to its 1000 nits of peak brightness. Although I have noticed that the light sensor tends to have a delayed performance in some cases such as when viewing HDR content where the display adjusts the brightness to furnish the best viewing experience.
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The colours are saturated, punchy, and vivid because at the end of the day, it is a Super AMOLED panel much like Realme X7 Max 5G.
You get to choose whether to stay on the standard 60Hz or go for an auto mode that lets you switch between 60Hz and 120Hz HRR modes dynamically. As long as you are interacting with any app or UI element, the display is refreshed on a 120Hz mode and otherwise, it switches to 60Hz when not interacting. Some apps like video players, Google Maps, games are the exception here just as is the case with a myriad of high refresh rate devices out there. Xiaomi Mi 11x is among the top contenders as it is the best in class in the display segment with an E4 AMOLED panel.
Realme GT Master packs in a Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G 5G chipset built on q 6nm node. The chipset has a max frequency of 2.4GHz with Adreno 642L GPU, 128/256GB of UFS 3.1 storage, and 6GB/8GB of storage.
On the hardware front, the Snapdragon 778G is among the new chipsets from Qualcomm. Although it is comparable to the performance yielded by Snapdragon 870, it doesn’t have an edge over Dimensity 1200 which is a top-of-the-line chipset from MediaTek. But hey, it’s a Qualcomm chipset integrated into the smart software system on the Realme GT Master Edition which collectively brings more performance to the device.
There’s no issue in texting, calling, browsing, and other day-to-day usages. When gaming, the chipset doesn’t shy away from holding frame rates to their optimum. You get 5GB of Dynamic RAM on the Realme GT Master Edition that does make the phone roar with a decently powerful RAM management system.
Usually, games like BGMI, COD Mobile, Fortnite are among the ones that reviewers check out to ascertain the performance of any phone, and I did the same. Turns out you can go as high as “High” graphics and “Ultra” fps on COD Mobile while the BGMI is among the best when the graphics are HDR or Ultra and with smooth to extreme frame rates. Plus, there’s a GT Mode that you can flick to and get an instant boost in performance as the chipset allocates more resources for gaming purposes.
There’s a vapour chamber under the hood that keeps the chipset cool by up to 15-degrees. Overall, the chipset is high-octane and good for a mid-range smartphone at this price tag.
On the software front, almost all Realme smartphones have upgraded to Android 11-powered Realme UI 2.0. No doubt the GT Master Edition is also upgraded to Realme UI 2.0 out-of-the-box. The software brings the best of both worlds such as a high degree of customizations, mini and floating windows, AOD customizations, enhanced privacy mode, multiple variants of dark mode among others.
Realme UI 2.0 isn’t too heavy as MIUI 12 based on Android 11 and rather has a pleasant and joyful user interface. However, the phone has its fair share of third-party apps or bloatware, and push notifications are a thing too. Anyways, the phone comes with two guaranteed Android OS upgrades so Android 12 (Realme UI 3.0) and Android 14 (Realme UI 4.0) will bring the phone back to life even two years after the release.
Realme GT 5G packs in a beefy 64MP triple camera setup at the back. Arranged in a vertical stack, the device packs in a 64MP primary snapper (with f/1.8 aperture, 0.7micron pixel size, PDAF); an 8MP ultrawide snapper (with f/2.2 aperture, 119-degree FoV, 1.12micron pixel size); and a 2MP macro sensor (f/2.4). There’s a 32MP front-facing camera housed in a punch-hole cut-out with f/2.5 aperture and 0.8micron pixel size.
The primary snapper is the jewel of the rear camera setup. It has a default binned mode at 16MP but you can go as high as 64MP mode to capture shots. Talking about the binned mode on the primary snapper, it captures good-quality images unless you are comparing it with the likes of the Samsung Galaxy A52. Details are high although the shots suffer from exposure management issues.
The shots are either high in exposure and thus, colours on photos look washed out. On the other hand, some shots show low brightness. This is a frequent issue and so much so that you would end up thinking of these two possible outcomes when you capture the shots.
The night mode on the primary sensor improves details retention, highlighting the scene and brightening it up. Shots see more details in the night mode as opposed to regular low-light photography, however, photos look soft and often overexposed. The sensor can record videos at up to 4K resolution at 30fps. You can go for 60fps at 1080p resolution with gyro-EIS as well.
Albeit an 8MP ultrawide snapper is standard across many mid-range smartphones, Realme somehow messed it up on GT Master. The shooter tends to lose colour retention as the shots sometimes have different colours than what you see with your eyes. Dynamic range is good and comparable to Realme X7 Max. Daytime ultrawide shots are okay but low-light photography takes a hit so I would simply suggest using the primary camera for quality shots.
Finally, we have a 2MP macro snapper which I consider as a decorative module, to be honest. The images are decent although you should have the patience to focus on the subject before you can tap on the shutter button. Again, Mi 11x from Xiaomi is a clear winner but GT Master does its job anyway.
Speaking about the selfie camera, the 32MP shooter does its job pretty well. The dynamic range is good, detail retention is good as well and the portrait shots are on-point with better edge detection, isolation, and application of the bokeh effect. The sensor can capture videos at 1080@30fps.
At 4,300 mAh, the battery mounted on the Realme GT Master Edition is still good but I personally feel Realme should’ve included a larger battery pack. My screen on time (SOT) on GT Master Edition was around 5-6 hours which is average which means there’s still room for improvement. A casual usage that includes texting, calling, browsing the internet, watching videos, and doing such stuff gives you a day’s worth of battery backup. I mean you can extend it further with moderation or usage in bursts or simply add a power saver mode to extend the battery a bit.
On top of that, if you include games and especially hardcore high-graphics games, I wouldn’t say that the battery would last for a day. At the end of the day, it all depends on your usage which is subjective.
With this phone, you get a speedier 65W fast charging that takes just 30 to 33 minutes to charge in full. What this means is that you can use your phone a lot without worrying about juice it up. Plugin the charge on a tea break or take a brisk walk for 10 minutes and you have more than 1/3rd of the battery back to life. Realme is using SuperDart 65W to get the juice flowing so that’s a relief.
Okay, I am pretty sure that here’s where you will feel disappointed. A sub-30K INR smartphone must get a stereo speaker but GT Master resorts to a single bottom-firing loudspeaker instead. Turns out the single speaker isn’t that loud and rather weak when on handsfree calls. There’s a 3.5mm headphone jack to compensate for the same though since you can plug in your old headphone/earphone and get the best of sound quality. However, that doesn’t mean you can neglect the fact that GT Master has a weak single speaker setup.
The device packs in a lot of beef in terms of connectivity features. Realme GT Master packs in dual-band Wi-FI 6, Bluetooth v5.2 with LE and A2DP, GPS with QZSS, BDS, Galileo, Glonass, and A-GPS; NFC, and a USB Type-C 2.0 port for storage transfer along with battery charging. Finally, there’s a 3.5mm headphone jack onboard as well.
The phone supports multiple bands across SA and NSA 5G networks internationally and the same goes for 4G with LTE-A. The call quality is clear on the handset although the bottom-firing loudspeaker that the phone will be using during a call on a loudspeaker, feels weak to me most of the time.
Realme GT Master gets an in-display fingerprint scanner (UD FPS) because why not since you have a Super AMOLED panel here. Turns out the UD FPS on GT Master is among the fastest, highly responsive, and reliable. It doesn’t take much hassle unlocking the phone using this solution. On the other hand, you can unlock the phone using Face Unlock that works swiftly and responsively too although the UD FPS has an upper hand in the speed and reliability aspects.
- 120Hz refresh rate sAMOLED display
- Snapdragon 778G
- 32MP selfie camera
- 65W super dart charging
- Appealing design
- 4300 mAh battery only
- No IP rating
Like any other smartphone you could try, Realme GT Master Edition has its pros and cons too. Except for the cameras, other specifications are worth a shot including the user experience, fluid and smooth display, fast charging tech, and a unique design that makes GT Master stand out among the odds. On the other hand, it has a tough competition due to the specs and pricing bracket so which includes Realme X7 Max, Poco F3 GT, Oppo Reno 6, OnePlus Nord 2, Samsung Galaxy A52, and a few others.
Realme GT Master Edition won’t disappoint you though as you can do almost everything on it including playing hardcore games but it doesn’t outshine the Snapdragon 888 that you get with the Realme GT 5G although not for comparison.