Very similar in appearance to its “full screen” predecessor, the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S snubs the iPhone X-started notch trend while packing a beefed-up Snapdragon 845 processor and adding a second rear-facing camera to the imaging equation.

The budget-focused Chinese company has never excelled at high-end photography and videography, but that changes today, as the Mi MIX 2S scores an impressive 97 points in the latest in-depth DxOMark analysis.

That’s not enough to replace Samsung’s Galaxy S9 Plus at the top of the DxO charts, but it’s actually the same exact total posted by the Huawei Mate 10 Pro and iPhone X, as well as just one point behind current silver medalist the Pixel 2.

As far as still image performance goes, Xiaomi even manages to beat Google’s newest flagship phone, with a 101 score, which also matches the iPhone X’s photography test results.

Apparently, the main 12MP wide-angle lens and secondary 12MP telephoto shooter on the back of the Mi MIX 2S are capable of producing snapshots with very fast and accurate autofocus, “mostly” accurate white balance, vivid colors, “barely visible” noise, and a natural bokeh effect in portrait mode with good subject isolation.

Of course, the “Chinese gem” is not perfect in terms of still quality, losing detail in “very low light”, and exhibiting somewhat limited dynamic range compared to the best of the best phones reviewed in the DxO labs.

88 points in video performance means the Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S is perhaps not a vlogger’s dream phone, although there’s a lot to like about that aspect of the 6-incher as well. Namely, “fairly effective” stabilization, solid autofocus, its bright and vivid colors in “most conditions”, and “well-controlled” noise in outdoor conditions. At the end of the day, if you can find this beast in a store near you, you should at least consider buying it as a way more affordable iPhone X alternative with a comparable camera.

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