Nubia Red Magic 3 Review: Serious Smartphone Gaming Starts Here

The Nubia Red Magic 3 gaming smartphone is available in India starting at Rs 35,999.

Published
Tech Reviews
5 min read
The Nubia Red Magic 3 comes with physical touch-sensitive shoulder triggers.
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The smartphone gaming industry in India is is booming and Nubia couldn’t have picked a better time to launch its flagship gaming smartphone the Nubia Red Magic 3.

The Nubia Red Magic 3, though the new kid in town, is here with a clear mind to bully the likes of an Asus ROG Phone and even the Black Shark 2.

Priced at Rs 35,999 for the 8GB RAM model, Nubia has a good nose for knowing what Indian gaming enthusiasts want. Impressive specs withing a budget.

So, is the Red Magic 3 really something to shout about? Or will it crumble under pressure from the demanding gamers user base of the country. Here’s what we think.

Snapshot

Pros

  • Physical gaming triggers
  • Advanced cooling system
  • Excellent spec sheet
  • Big battery
  • Large 90Hz display

Cons

  • A bit too heavy
  • Low audio levels from speakers
  • UI needs polishing

What’s Good

The phone sports a large 6.65-inch AMOLED display and with that kind of real estate on a phone, you’re bound to enjoy gaming. The fact it’s a 90Hz screen eliminates all possibilities of incessant motion blurs enabling a smooth gaming experience.

Not only is it good for gaming, but it’s perfect for consuming video content.

The Nubia Red Magic 3 comes with 5,000mAh battery.
The Nubia Red Magic 3 comes with 5,000mAh battery.
(Photo: The Quint)

The Red Magic 3 comes with a Snapdragon 855 processor, which in this price segment is rare. It comes with a dedicated game switch to activate the game mode which pushed the Red Magic 3 into a separate UI dedicated for gaming.

This mode offers gamers the ability to customise performance setting and also help keep unwanted calls and messages at bay during gaming sessions.

The Nubia Red Magic 3 comes with USB Type-C charging.
The Nubia Red Magic 3 comes with USB Type-C charging.
(Photo: The Quint)

At the helm of the cooling system is a dedicated cooling fan and a liquid-cooling system. It’s very efficient and you can keep a constant track of the phone’s temperature in the side bar.

You can constantly keep a track on the phone’s temperature in the game mode.
You can constantly keep a track on the phone’s temperature in the game mode.
(Photo: The Quint)
The touch-sensitive triggers (called “touch buttons” in the phones) adds a lot of value to the entire setup. You can map these to any on-screen buttons and this does give you the upper edge. I mapped them to the down sight scope and shooting button in PUBG and that’s improved my performance immensely. 
The phone comes with a dedicated game mode.
The phone comes with a dedicated game mode.
(Photo: The Quint)

The only disappointing bit is that you can’t control the touch sensitivity on the triggers so at times even a slight tough activates it.

It’s a good looking phone and that LED strip at the back just give it a very futuristic look. Even my mom though it was “cool”.

Fingerprint scanner on a phone this big. Big problem. 
Fingerprint scanner on a phone this big. Big problem. 
(Photo: The Quint) 

The mammoth 5,000mAh battery is a great companion for a gaming phone like this. The battery juice will vary based on the mode you have chosen, however, the playing high-end games on a 90Hz at 90 FPS is bound to drain that battery quicker.

What’s good is that it comes with a 27W fast charger which charges the phone at a brisk pace. You can get a full charge in almost 60 minutes.

What’s Bad

It’s a heavy phone and playing for ling hours will take a toll on your wrists. No two ways about that.

I wasn’t really impressed with the audio output from the twin speakers especially when I kept my ear out for the minutest of sounds like enemy footsteps. Headphones are always the better option while gaming.

The display could have done with an anti-glare coating. There were times I had to battle with the odd light bulb in the back.

The Red Magic 3 comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack. 
The Red Magic 3 comes with a 3.5mm headphone jack. 
(Photo: The Quint) 

Though very close to stock Android, the UI still needs a lot of polishing not to mention there are still a lot of typos in the UI. I couldn’t wrap my head around what “Qualitu priority” means. I hope Nubia means “Quality priority”.

Spot “Qualitu” priority.
Spot “Qualitu” priority.
(Photo: The Quint)

Though it comes with a 48-megapixel rear camera, there are better cameras out there in the same price range. Yes, it offers video recording at 8k resolution, which is the first ever but that too is in its beta phase.

The phone comes with a 48-megapixel rear camera.
The phone comes with a 48-megapixel rear camera.
(Photo: The Quint)

I really didn’t feel the need to pull out my Nubia Red Magic 3 to click pictures, but if it really comes to that, hope you have good photography skills.

Final Verdict

The Nubia Red Magic 3 is a phone that every smartphone gamer needs to have on his game station. Bundle it with a good pair of gaming headphones and you are good to go.

I haven’t had the chance to have a go at the phones gaming accessories, however, I will update you on how much utility they bring to the table.

As a daily use smartphone, I don’t find much utility in the Magic 3 than what you’d find in a sub-15k phone although it does come with ample battery backup so it can always be used as your secondary phone.

At Rs 35,999 for the 8GB RAM variant, the Nubia Red Magic 3 is value for money and also offers that little ‘extra life’ that every player needs.

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