Nubia’s REDMAGIC 7S Pro will be going up against Asus’ ROG Phone 6 Pro in the global gaming smartphone segment. The new Android smartphone was first unveiled in China alongside a standard model, the REDMAGIC 7S. Unfortunately, the standard model, which is surprisingly superior to the pro model in some areas, hasn’t been launched globally.
The REDMAGIC 7S Pro is a follow-up to the REDMAGIC 7 Pro that was announced in February 2022. The new smartphone comes with a handful of upgrades, with one of the most notable being an upgrade from the the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 to Qualcomm’s newer Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor.
These two gaming smartphones look nothing alike. The front of the REDMAGIC 7S Pro is covered in glass while the back is a mix of glass and metal. It has an under-display camera for a genuine full-screen design and is available in three colors, two of which have a transparent back panel. There is also a Transformers (Bumblebee) edition that’s exclusive to China. The ROG Phone 6 Pro has glass on both sides. It also skips the notch in favor of a not-so-slim bezel that’s thick enough to house the selfie camera. Asus has placed a 2-inch OLED secondary screen on the back that displays different animations as well as notifications. The ROG Phone 6 has an IPX4 rating and is available in a single color – Storm White.
The REDMAGIC 7S Pro’s 6.8-inch FHD+ AMOLED display is a tad bigger than the 6.78-inch FHD+ AMOLED display of the ROG Phone 6 Pro. The former has a 120Hz refresh rate, a 960Hz touch sampling rate, and Gorilla Glass 5 protection. The Samsung E4 display on the Asus phone refreshes at 165Hz but has a lower 720Hz touch sampling rate, is protected by the stronger Gorilla Glass Victus, and supports HDR10+. Both phones have an under-display fingerprint scanner and support DC Dimming. In terms of performance, the two phones should be largely identical as they both use the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor. However, the REDMAGIC 7S Pro has a secondary Red Core 1 chip to handle audio and haptic feedback. While the ROG Phone 6 Pro is available in a single configuration with 18GB of RAM and 512GB of storage, the REDMAGIC 7S Pro can be purchased with 12GB+256GB or 18GB+512GB. Unsurprisingly, neither phone has a microSD card slot for storage expansion.
Their differences extend to their cameras, despite having the same number of sensors. On the back of the ROG Phone 6 Pro is a 50MP Sony IMX766 sensor, a 13MP ultrawide angle camera, and a 5MP macro camera. It also has a 12MP front-facing camera that sits in the bezel above the display. In contrast, the REDMAGIC 7S Pro packs a 64MP ISOCELL GW3 main sensor on the back paired with an 8MP 120-degree ultrawide angle camera and a 2MP camera. While those may not match up to the ROG Phone 6 Pro, it impresses with its 16MP under-display front-facing camera which uses a combination of a smart screen circuit and a display chip to remain invisible. Nubia has also added some useful components to reduce light diffraction so the camera can capture sharper and brighter images. Both phones can record in 8K at 24fps and in 4K at 60fps but only the ROG Phone 6 Pro has (electronic) image stabilization. Apart from having the same number of cameras, both phones have customizable shoulder triggers built into the side of the frame.
Both manufacturers have adopted different cooling solutions, an important aspect of any gaming smartphone. The REDMAGIC 7S Pro’s ICE relies on a built-in cooling fan with a 20,000 RPM (and LEDs on the transparent models) combined with an aluminum heat sink, graphite thermal pad, aviation-grade aluminum heat sink, vapor chamber, and high thermal conductivity copper foil. The ROG Phone 6 Pro doesn’t have a built-in cooling fan but Asus says its GameCool 6 cooling system includes a Boron Nitride thermal compound for reducing thermal throttling during short gaming sessions; an enlarged vapor chamber and graphite sheets for cooling during mid-length gaming sessions; and a separately purchased AeroActive Cooler 6 cooling fan for cooling during marathon sessions. Nubia also sells a bigger cooling fan that can be attached to the back of its phone.
The two smartphones run Android 12 out of the box and come with dual-SIM support, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC, WiFi 6 (WiFi 6E on the ROG Phone 6 Pro), an audio jack, stereo speakers, and triple microphones. The Asus ROG Phone 6 Pro packs a 6000mAh battery with support for 65W fast charging. It also supports Quick charge 5.0 and Power Delivery 3.0. Despite having a slightly larger display and a built-in fan, the REDMAGIC 7S Pro has a smaller 5000mAh capacity battery. It also supports 65W fast charging, although the version sold in China supports 135W fast charging. Thankfully, both manufacturers ship their phones with a charger. With respect to availability and pricing, both Asus and ZTE (Nubia) have confirmed their phones will be available in North America. Asus has yet to reveal the US price of the ROG Phone 6 Pro which sells for €1299 in Europe, but the REDMAGIC 7S Pro will start at $729/€779 for the base model.