The Xiaomi Mi 11 line-up was met with wide acclaim, and the 11T Pro (minus the “Mi”) aims to bring those features and high-caliber performance to the masses starting at $649. If you’ve found yourself in the loop of paying $1000 or more for a smartphone upgrade every year, this may just be the answer you’ve been looking for. Featuring a gorgeous 120Hz AMOLED screen, a 108MP rear shooter and AI-driven camera features, and a Snapdragon 888 processor, the 11T Pro promises a lot for less. Let’s see if it delivers.
- 8GB+128GB: EUR $649,
- 8GB+256GB: EUR $699
- 12GB+256GB: EUR $749
- 120Hz 6.67” AMOLED flat DotDisplay
- DisplayMate A+
- Up to 480Hz touch sampling rate
- Aspect ratio: 20:9
- FHD+, 2400x1080
- True Display
- Over 1 billion colors
- HBM 800 nits(typ), 1000 nits peak brightness(typ)
- Contrast ratio: 5,000,000:1 (typ)
- 120Hz AdaptiveSync
- Dolby Vision®
- Sunlight mode 3.0
- Reading mode 3.0
- 360°ambient light sensor
- Meteorite Gray, Moonlight White, Celestial Blue
- LxWxD: 164.1mm x 76.9mm x 8.8mm
- Weight: 204g
- Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 888
- 108MP wide-angle camera
- 0.7μm pixel size, 2.1μm 9-in-1 Super Pixel
- f/1.75, 7P lens
- Dual Native ISO
- 8MP ultra-wide angle camera
- 120° FOV, f/2.2
- 5MP telemacro camera
- f/2.4, 3-7cm AF
- 16MP in-display front camera
- Bluetooth 5.2
- WiFi 6
- Dual SIM
- Multi-functional NFC
- IR blaster
- Arc side fingerprint
- PIN/Password, Pattern
- 5,000mAh (typ) Battery
- 120W Xiaomi HyperCharge
- 120W in-box charger
- Dedicated dual speakers
- SOUND BY Harman Kardon
- Dolby Atmos®
- X-axis linear vibration motor
- MIUI 12.5 based on Android 11
Introduction and Overview
It’s not by chance that Xiaomi finds itself as the second-largest smartphone manufacturer in the world. It’s made its name on delivering a wide range of devices to fit any market segment. Last year, we had the Mi 11 Ultra, an incredibly high-performance device that went toe to toe with Samsung and, in many cases, won. This year, we have the 11T line-up, including the standard Xiaomi 11T and the 11T Pro, which we’re reviewing today. These devices fall in the middle of the market in pricing with the 11T beginning at $499 and the 11T Pro beginning at $649.
Though the two devices have more in common than different, there are some core differences that might push you to spend more on the Pro. Starting with the similarities, both phones offer bright 1000-nit 6.7-inch AMOLED screens running at 120Hz for smooth scrolling. They each offer 8GB variants with up to 128GB or 256GB of storage (the Pro also has a 12GB option). Around the back, we have a trio of rear cameras including a 108MP main shooter, an 8MP ultrawide with a 120-degree field of view, and a 5MP telemacro lens. The front camera is 16MP with an f2.4 aperture for improved low-light performance. Both feature side fingerprint readers, and 5000mAh batteries for all-day battery life.
The 11T Pro sets itself apart with its SoC and supporting features. While the normal 11T features a MediaTek Dimensity 1200 processor, the Pro uses a newer Snapdragon 888 CPU. The 888 isn’t the absolute latest chip available in smartphones, but it’s close and has enough performance for just about any task you’d care to throw at it. Likewise, the Pro is specced out with supporting features like speakers tuned by Harmon Kardon, Dolby Vision HDR, DisplayMate A+ certification to ensure the colors on the screen are accurate and well-suited for mobile photography and vlogging. The 11T Pro also features a ridiculously fast 120W charger.
The theme for these phones is “CineMagic,” so it’s clear than Xiaomi is banking on the camera and screen performance to really set the phone apart from the competition. Apart from having massive resolution, they each feature AI picture enhancements (the phone can recognize different types of shots and adjust settings for the best result. Likewise, there are multiple creative video modes unlike anything available from Apple or Samsung, as well as presets that allow you to easily create stinger intros for you VLOG.
They’re certainly full-featured packages for the money, so let’s dig a bit deeper into each element.
The 11T Pro is available features a large 6.7-inch display, which makes this a large phone overall, especially if you add a case. You’ll need to use two hands to use the on-screen keyboard unless you hand large hands. The phone is comfortable to hold thanks to its slim, 8.8mm design and rounded rear edges. The phone uses Gorilla Glass Victus to protect its display which lends it a premium feel in normal use and an added degree of protection in the event of a drop.
Around the back, we have the rear of the phone which is available in Meteorite Gray, Moonlight White, or Celestial Blue. I was sent the Meteorite Gray version, which features a brushed aluminum finish. It looks great, though shows fingerprints almost immediately in normal use (Xiaomi includes a clear protective case to help with this). We also have the camera bump with its triple-camera array. It’s not obtrusive, doesn’t get hung up being taken in or out of the pocket, and is generally very standard among other premium smartphone camera designs.
The display on the 11T Pro is great. It features a resolution of 2400x1080 and comes DisplayMate A+ certified. That means it has greater color accuracy out of the box. This initially struck me when compared side by side with my Samsung Note 20 Ultra. The Note 20 is naturally more vivid and saturated, while the Xiaomi 11T Pro is better suited to content creation and mobile editing right out of the box. If you like the more saturated look, it supports multiple picture profiles, including sRGB and P3 color profiles, which is the first time I’ve seen these on a smartphone. You can also manually adjust color balance, hue, saturation, contrast, and gamma, akin to a decent computer monitor.
The display features 120Hz high refresh rate support with adaptive sync. This does not come enabled by default but should absolutely be turned on, even at the expense of some battery life. Enabling this setting makes fast motions, like quickly scrolling web pages and menus, much more smooth.
The display also supports HDR10+ and Dolby Vision for enjoying HDR video content. It doesn’t get as bright as some of the competition, however, coming in with 800 nits of typical brightness and a peak of 1000 nits. That’s still quite bright (I was able to use it outside in the sunshine without much difficulty), but falls short of Samsung’s S21 and Note 20 Ultra.
Coming from prior Xiaomi phones, the screen is one of the key areas that has been scaled back. The resolution has been dialed back slightly and the refresh rate is actually a step slower than the 144Hz found on the Mi 11. That said, the display was still crisp, detailed, and smooth. These changes didn’t negatively impact my experience with the phone.
The model I tested was the 8GB variant with 256GB of system memory. Though neither is exceptionally high in the current smartphone landscape but is in line with other offerings at this price point and higher. I’ve yet to find a real-world application that uses up all 8GB of smartphone storage either, so spending more on the 12GB variant is best left to true power users.
I tested the phone through nearly two weeks of daily use as well as with Geekbench. In day to day use, it offered smooth, snappy performance. For browsing the web, watching YouTube videos, and cruising social media, it worked beautifully — a seamless jump from the Samsung Note 20 Ultra 5G.
Dropping into demanding games, like Asphalt or Genshin Impact, the phone can sometimes hiccup. This isn’t consistent, but as the phone heats up it will dial back performance to prevent overheating. If you’re a hardcore mobile gamer that wants to avoid minor stuttering, this isn’t the phone for you.
That said, I still found it perfectly playable in roughly one-hour periods. The FPS drops weren’t enough to make any game painful to play, they were just noticeable. Depending on your title, your mileage may vary.
In Geekbench, we’re able to see how the 11T Pro stacks up against its peers. In the CPU test, it earned an 838 in single-core performance. This falls short of Samsung’s S21 series and the Note 20 Ultra, which scored a 929 in my testing, even with its older Snapdragon 865 chipset. According to the data reported by Geekbench, it did land higher than the Samsung S20+ however.
In the multi-core test, it scored 3231. I was surprised to find that this topped Geekbenches charts. The next closest score was reported from a Samsung S21 Ultra which had 3176. My own Note 20 Ultra scored 2887. The benefits of the newer processor are clear versus the Note and give this phone a competitive footing against the latest and greatest from the competition in this test.
The Xiaomi 11T Pro comes equipped with a triple camera array. The main camera can shoot all the way up to 108 megapixels and is crisp and detailed. It features an aperture of f1.75 and delivers a very nice shallow depth of field, even without AI background blur. Alongside it is an 8MP ultrawide camera with a 120-degree field of view, perfect for landscapes, real estate photography, or really anything where you need to capture a wide scene. The camera also corrects any curvature in the picture so they come out without any kind of fisheye distortion. Finally, there’s a 5MP macro telemacro lens for ultra close-up shots. Around the front, is a 16MP in-display camera for selfie shots and VLOGs.
Note 20 Ultra
Xiaomi 11T Pro
In the above picture set, the AI camera took over, recognized the plant in the scene and adjusted the greens so they were more vibrant and appealing.
Note 20 Ultra
Xiaomi 11T Pro
In the above picture set, notice the improved auto-exposure which increases detail in low light scenarios
The performance here is very good. The overall level of detail does seem to be slightly softer than my Samsung Note 20 Ultra when in bright lighting, but the colors are more appealing on the 11T Pro. Likewise, the auto-exposure doesn’t over-brighten images quite as starkly as the Note 20, so there’s less adjustment needed to get a good shot and improved detail in uneven or low-light scenarios. I was also very impressed by the low-light performance on the front shooter. It offered a much clearer shot with less noise.
Note 20 Ultra
Xiaomi 11T Pro
In this picture set, notice the wider field of view on the 11T Pro
I was also floored by how good the macro lens is. Typically, macro lenses on smartphone cameras aren’t great, offering weak detail due to the reduced amount of light they can gather. The 11T Pro, on the other hand, is a genuine macro shooter. The minimum focusing distance is rated at 3-7cm but in my testing, it worked well inside of that distance with the front lens almost touching the target. Have a look at how it compares to the standard lens on the Note 20 Ultra 5G (non-macro since it doesn’t have a macro lens at all).
Note 20 Ultra
Xiaomi 11T Pro
That’s impressive stuff.
When it comes to video, the camera packs a punch. It shoots up to 8K30 video (without HDR), or 4K, 1080p, or 720p at 60p with HDR enabled. This mode also supports AI video enhancements (which can guide centering and focus), steadyshot, color filters (realtime LUTs), and sliders for Beautify and Bokeh effects. There’s also a suite of creative video options to do things like clone your subject, freeze the background around them while they’re still moving, mimic a slow shutter/long exposure, or capture video clips to craft your own high quality VLOG intro.
The camera suite here is genuinely fun if you’re a creative person. How often you’ll use these extras will depend on the person, but the fundamentals here — the lenses, slow motion, time lapse, panorama, AI — are all sound.
The only thing I miss is a zoom lens for capturing far away subjects. The 108MP lens gets part of the way there. The higher resolution allows you to zoom in to an incredible degree without losing detail, but is most useful for zoom in on close subjects. Hopefully this is added in the inevitable Xiaomi 12 Pro.
Battery Life and Charging
With a 5000 mAh battery, you would expect battery life to be good and it mostly is. I use my phone a lot throughout the day, mainly with email and web browsing with the YouTube and Netflix thrown in for a couple hours each day. Screen on-time is typically 5-7 hours. With that scenario, I didn’t have any trouble getting from morning until bedtime, leaving WiFi, Bluetooth, 5G, and 120Hz enabled. Movie watching is the most impactful, so if you’re a regular video streamer, you may need to plug in at the end of the day.
Thankfully, recharging the battery is incredibly fast. The 11T Pro comes with a humdinger of a charging brick — 120 watts of charging power takes a charger that’s fully twice the size of the average Samsung charging brick. That added size opens the door to ridiculously fast charging times. From dead to a full charge takes less than 20 minutes. Yes — less than 20 minutes.
The recharge time has been freeing. I’ve become used to carrying a USB cable or portable battery pack in my bag throughout the day. Instead, I don’t worry about recharging at all until I’m home from work, usually with a good amount of charge left. A few minutes later, the phone is completely replenished. If you do happen to run it dry, you won’t be left waiting ages for it to recover.
I’ve lived with the Xiaomi 11T Pro for about two weeks, carrying it alongside my Samsung Note 20 Ultra. I paid around $1200 for that device, I was curious to see exactly how the 11T would compare, so I did a lot of side-by-side comparisons. If there is a way to have a flagship experience without paying the ridiculously high, and growing ever higher, flagship price, I wanted to know about it. Thus far in my smartphone testing, there has always been some major trade-off that left me going back to Samsung.
Here, however, the actual day-to-day use comparison is so close that it really doesn’t feel like I’m sacrificing anything impactful, despite the 11T Pro costing literally half the price. At the same time, I actually find myself enjoying the camera system on the 11T even more than the Note 20. That isn’t something I expected.
I use my phone for an incredible amount of photos. I take product shots with it when I don’t want to take out my larger cameras. I take pictures of the kids. Sometimes I even record video clips that then get put into larger projects. I need an exceptionally good camera system. In my testing, Samsung still has a slight edge in overall detail, but Xiaomi had better colors, better bokeh, actually useful AI enhancements, and the best macro lens I’ve ever seen on a camera. What Xiaomi has done here is very impressive, though I do miss the true optical zoom of the Note 20 Ultra.
The other big highlight is the battery life. Not only is the battery huge but the 120W charger is ridiculously fast. Being able to completely recharge the foam in less than 20 minutes is a godsend and has saved me from having to carry around a back-up battery bank “just in case.”
Perhaps a better comparison would be against the Samsung S21+ and S21 Ultra. Unfortunately, I don’t have those phones on-hand to compare against. If my experience with the Note 20 Ultra is any indication, there are probably a handful of things they also do better. That only makes sense given their higher price. What’s being delivered here is genuinely impressive.
The Xiaomi 11T Pro more than lived up to my expectations — it’s left my reaching for it anytime I need to take a picture or record a quick video. The performance doesn’t rank at the absolute top of the synthetic benchmarks, even amongst others that use a Snapdragon 888, but in actual use I wasn’t able to feel any difference between it and my Samsung Note 20 Ultra, which made changing over painless.
The 11T Pro is an exceptionally good smartphone and is an outstanding value for the price. If you have trouble stomaching the ever-increasing prices of other flagships, I highly encourage you to give it a closer look. It is an excellent investment, whether you’re a casual user or a power-user crafting videos on the go.
The product described in this article was provided by the manufacturer for evaluation purposes.