realme GT Master Edition Review
For some time now, realme has been stepping up its game with its mid-range smartphones, and the realme GT Master Edition is no exception. It has a unique design, a super AMOLED display, a new processor, and a battery that charges up from zero to 100 percent in about 30 minutes. It’s the most affordable device within the GT series, but will that be enough for it to be worth choosing over its rivals? Let’s find out in this review.
Design and Construction
This device is well-made; It’s a slim and hype-looking phone that feels compact to grip. The best part is that this vegan leather style doesn’t attract a lot of smudges.
Obviously, part of the GT Master’s appeal comes from its suitcase aesthetic by Japanese designer, Naoto Fukasawa, in this Voyager Grey color variant. You get that luggage-like structure in vegan leather material, with a slightly protruding camera module that has a nice touch of glass. Meanwhile, the Daybreak Blue variant is also available locally and it sports a metallic look that gives a holographic effect.
Upfront, the bezels look relatively slim, then there’s also a punch hole notch on the upper left for the selfie camera, the call speaker on the top bezel, and an in-display fingerprint scanner that’s placed on the lower part of the display.
Look on the right side and you will find the power button alone.
Meanwhile on the left are the volume rocker and the card tray for 2 nano-sized SIM cards. Do take note that there’s no microSD card slot here, but 128GB or 256GB should be more than enough for most users.
At the top, we have a single microphone, while at the bottom you can find the loudspeaker, USB-C port, main microphone, and the 3.5mm headphone jack. Yup, thank you realme!
Display and Multimedia
Taking a closer look at the display, the realme GT Master Edition flaunts the same display as the realme GT 5G. It features a 6.43-inch Samsung Super AMOLED screen with Full HD+ resolution, a pixel density of 409ppi, 360Hz touch sampling rate, and a 120Hz high refresh rate which can be adjusted to standard 60Hz or auto-select if you want to save more battery life. Nicely we already get a pre-installed screen protector on top.
The display offers good viewing angles and it is vibrant which is expected as it has an AMOLED panel. Colors look vivid and blacks look pleasingly inky. However, unlike its smudge-resistant back, the display is a lot attracted to dust and smudges.
Like what we’re used to with RealmeUI, in the settings, we get 3 screen color modes to pick from, as well as a screen color temperature slider going from cooler to warmer. Then you can also turn on the OSIE Visual Effect, which uses Artificial Intelligence to enhance colors and picture quality for supported apps.
Audio-wise, the phone comes with a single downward-firing speaker that can get loud enough for a small room. The mids and highs are present, but not so much for bass. I’d say it’s pretty average within the midrange smartphones segment. If you want a better listening experience, we still suggest that you take advantage of its headphone port.
The realme GT Master Edition offers a triple camera setup at the back with a 64MP main, an 8MP ultra-wide, and a 2MP macro shooter. Meanwhile, for selfies, you get a 32MP selfie camera.
Checking out some rear camera photos, the default mode often provides clear and sharp outputs under good lighting conditions. We noticed that the post-processing can be intense at times, but you can lessen this by turning off the AI enhancement. The HDR can also be inconsistent so make sure to tap to focus so you get a very good shot.
If you’re into high contrast and saturation shots, you’ll definitely appreciate the GT Master’s camera quality. The quick zoom toggles from 2x to 5x, but it’s still capable of zooming in up to 20x just in case you need it. Its quality will be sacrificed, of course, but you can just use the 64MP lens if you want to capture more details and overall a high-quality photo.
As for ultrawide shots, they’re alright. It’s not the best, but it delivers well even when there’s a slight fisheye effect occasionally.
The GT Master did impress us when it comes to its rear portrait mode and macro photography. Its subject-background separation looks clean and on point and its macro mode is very user-friendly.
If you want to take RAW photos, then you can use the Pro mode or the Street mode that has specific millimeter markings and manual focus. It’s like a simpler version of the Pro mode, really.
As for night photography, its dedicated night mode provides decent brightness and sharpness boost.
Talk about selfies, under ample lighting, photos come out crisp and well-lit, but they can look pale on the skin tone. Nonetheless, its front portrait mode also performs excellently.
Checking out video recording, you can shoot up to 4k at 60fps but the Ultra Steady stabilization is locked at 1080p.
There’s also an Ultra Steady Max option for, extra shakey conditions.
OS, UI, and Apps
Moving on to software, the GT Master runs on realmeUI 2.0 that’s based on Android 11. If you’re a previous or current realme or OPPO user you’ll know what to expect already. There are tons of customization options here where you change icon styles, app layout, fingerprint style, font, and colors. There’s also an option in the settings to toggle the home screen app arrangement and gesture navigation.
As for other features, there’s dark mode, digital wellbeing and parental controls, smart driving, riding mode, and mini window or floating window for compatible apps.
And like previous realme UI versions, it comes with pre-installed apps and bloatware including realme Community, Facebook, Messenger, Linkedin, Lazada, PUBG Mobile, and Netflix.
Out of the 256GB of storage that we get, about 236GB is available right out of the box. As mentioned earlier, this device doesn’t have a dedicated microSD card slot, so there’s no expandable storage.
Performance and Benchmarks
Under the hood, this phone is equipped with a Snapdragon 778G 5G processor that’s paired with an Adreno 642L GPU, 8GB of RAM, and 128/256GB of internal storage.
The GT Master also has ‘RAM expansion,’ which means that a portion of the storage (2GB, 3GB, or 5GB, 3 by default) is set aside to function in tandem with the actual RAM, dumping less critical tasks, and theoretically letting you to have more apps cached and available when you need them.
In our experience, we’re glad to say that this phone delivers flagship-grade performance for day-to-day use. Multitasking is a breeze and it can easily handle heavy tasks and gaming with rare stutters.
There’s a GT Mode that you can turn on which works like a performance mode to boost the phone’s performance—it will, as expected, consume more battery. You don’t really need to use it every day but it’s handy if you’ll do heavy activities. Thermals aren’t much of an issue here thanks to its layered vegan leather design.
If you want to see the benchmark scores that we got, we’ll flash them now:
- AntuTu V9.1.6 – 536,893
- Geekbench 5 – 790 (Single-core), 2,771 (Multi-core)
- PCMark – 12,661 (Work 3.0)
- 3DMark – 5,013 (SSE OpenGL 3.1), 2,497 (Vulkan)
- AndroBench – 952.7 MB/s (Seq Read), 786.01 MB/s (Seq. Write)
When it comes to biometrics and security, the GT Master Edition comes with an in-display fingerprint scanner and face unlock. They both work fast, but the fingerprint scanner is oddly placed lower than expected so it can take some adjustment. Then again, it’s still reliable.
Connectivity and Battery Life
The usual connectivity features are present in the realme GT Master Edition. It has Wi-Fi, ??Bluetooth 5.2, NFC, dual-5G, 4G LTE, and GPS.
Battery-wise, we get a 4,200mAh capacity with realme’s 65W fast charging. 4,200mAh doesn’t sound enough for today’s standard, but the 65W charging tech actually compensates well.
In the PCMark’s Work 3.0 battery test wherein we kept it at a 120Hz refresh rate, the GT Master yielded 13 hours and 34 minutes. As for our standard video loop test which involves playing a 1080p video on loop under the standard 60Hz refresh rate, Airplane mode turned on, 50% brightness, 50% volume, and earphones plugged in, we got a long 24 hours and 23 minutes, which is definitely not bad.
Charging on the other hand is truly rapid. We got to charge it from 0 to 100% within just 30-35 minutes.
The realme GT Master Edition is available for either 128GB or 256GB of internal storage. The 128GB variant is a Lazada exclusive deal for PHP 18,990, while the 256GB will be available via Lazada and realme retail stores and dealers for PHP 21,990.
To be honest, there’s nothing really beyond it to be called “master” but this is definitely another undissappointing mid-ranger from realme. There’s quite a competition in its range today but the realme GT Master has an advantage as it certainly offers good value for money, given that you get a new Snapdragon 778G processor, 5G connectivity, a vibrant Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate, and 65W fast charging support. Its camera performance is pretty decent too for your social media uploads. So yeah, we don’t have much complaints about it, and its highly recommendable if it’s within your budget.
And that wraps up this review. How about you guys? What do you think of this realme GT Master Edition? Let us know in the comments.
With inputs from Aj Viray
realme GT Master Edition specs:
6.43-inch FHD+ (2400 x 1080) Samsung Super AMOLED display
120Hz refresh rate
360Hz touch sampling rate
Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G 5G processor
128GB, 256GB storage
Triple rear cameras:
• 64MP F1.8 (main)
• 8MP F2.2 (ultrawide)
• 2MP F2.4 (macro)
32MP F2.5 front camera
GPS, Beidou, Glonass, QZSS, Galileo
Hi-Res Audio certification
realme UI 2.0 (Android 11)
4,200mAh battery w/ 65W fast charging
159.2 x 73.5 x 8mm
Voyager Grey and Daybreak Blue