The Realme GT Neo 3 is a solid mid-range phone, and a refreshingly unlikely vehicle to show off Realme’s 150W charging. It’s blazingly fast to recharge, but those after the best deal should check out the slightly older Realme GT 2.
- Powerful and consistent MediaTek CPU
- Solid primary camera produces punchy pictures
- 150W charges the phone in 20 minutes
- Plastic sides make the phone feel cheaper
- Battery life is just OK
- Ultra-wide camera colour tone is skewed
- Potentially off-putting finishes
150W chargingFastest charging in a mid-range phone? 150W takes the battery from flat to full in 20 minutes 22 seconds. An 80W version of the phone is available in some countries too.
MediaTek Dimensity 8100 SoCWhile not as popular as Qualcomm’s chipsets, the Dimensity 8100 is similar to the last-gen Snapdragon 888 in power, and its performance is a lot more stable than the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1’s.
Sony IMX766 cameraThis phone uses the Sony IMX766 sensor in its primary camera. This large, high-quality chip unlocks features like DOL-HDR video, and produces vibrant images almost all of the time.
The Realme GT Neo 3 is an upper mid-range Android phone, the kind that offers an experience similar to a flagship phone, minus a few niceties such as curved front glass displays, telephoto cameras and ultra-high resolution displays. Phones like this are sensible buys, and usually fairly easy to recommend.
The Realme GT Neo 3 is no different, but its impact is dulled a little by its predecessors the Realme GT 2 and GT Neo 2. Buy “old” and you get (arguably) a better processor for the same price in the Realme GT 2, or can spend less on the GT Neo 2.
That said, neither one of these has the Realme GT Neo 3’s star feature: 150W charging. It is, no denials here, very impressive. However, I can’t quite shake the feeling Realme’s last generation of Androids represented a slightly better deal.
Still, the Realme GT Neo 3 is a generally good value and complete-feeling Android, even if it doesn’t quite match Realme’s all-time classics in the value stakes.
- Glass back
- Bold, if questionable, design
- Plastic sides and buttons don’t feel that high-end
The Realme GT Neo 3’s design is classic Realme stuff, in that it will seem borderline offensive to some eyes. My phone is a bold blue with a couple of white stripes running along the back, an effect similar to a pair of tracksuit bottoms.
It is also available in white with black stripes or, for those who do not like this style at all, black. These finishes are either attention-grabbing or dull, with no options in the middle ground. But you can judge whether its your cup of tea for yourself.
The Realme GT Neo 3’s back is curved glass, with a soft and totally matt finish. It casts zero reflections and is impressively fingerprint resistant.
It’s a shame the smooth glass isn’t paired with aluminium sides. The Realme GT Neo 3’s sides are plastic, so while this is a well-made phone it does not quite feel on-par with a Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus or iPhone 13.
Like most upper-mid range phones, the Realme GT Neo 3 does not have a headphone jack. Memory is non-expandable too but, in the UK at least, the lone 256GB storage configuration means this isn’t a big issue for most people.
The phone’s speakers are good, with two drivers that provide good maximum volume and enough low end to avoid harshness at high volumes. There’s also a fast in-screen fingerprint scanner, bringing the day-to-day experience closer to that of an even more expensive phone.
- Good quality display
- 120Hz refresh rate
- Solid brightness
The Realme GT Neo 3 has a large 6.7-inch screen. Just like the phone’s build, it is subject to a few budget-related compromises, but none are particularly onerous.
For example, the resolution is 2412 x 1080 pixels rather than a super-high one. It still looks sharp and clean, though. The display glass is Gorilla Glass 5 rather than the even stronger Victus, but we were happy enough with this generation in older flagships so it’s not amiss here. Realme also applies a plastic screen protector in the factory, reducing your chances of damaging it before you decide whether to buy your own screen protector or not.
Colour is vibrant – almost excessively so when you first turn the phone on. But there is a Natural mode for more normal-looking saturation levels. It seems DCI P3 is as unsaturated as Realme is willing to go, though, with no sRGB option.
This does fit Realme’s more youthful brand style, though, as faithful sRGB looks almost greyscale if you’re used to OLED phones that like to show off their colour depth.
The 120Hz refresh rate ensures smooth-looking scrolling as you jump around the software; there’s no super-dynamic refresh rate mode here, just an Auto Select mode that flicks between 60Hz and 120Hz based on the app currently running.
Maximum brightness is fairly good, without hitting any new heights. The Realme GT Neo 3 maxes out at 480 nits indoors, and will head up to 675 nits when in direct sunlight. It’s enough for solid outdoor clarity but – funnily enough – the cheaper Neo 3T actually goes brighter according to my readings, maxing out at 770 nits.
It’s another reminder that real-world brightness has as much to do with a manufacturer’s decisions about display power versus battery consumption and heat generation as it has to do with a screen panel’s raw capabilities.
Performance and software
- Efficient, powerful MediaTek CPU
- Cleaner software than you might imagine
- Game optimisation not at Qualcomm level
The Realme GT 3 Neo runs Android 12 and has a RealmeUI 3.0 software layer on top. This is an inoffensive custom UI that feels quite “vanilla”.
It doesn’t mess with the layout of the drop-down menu like some versions of Xiaomi’s MIUI, the default round icon shapes don’t look stiff and the preinstalled wallpapers are mostly tastefully plain colour patterns.
A few apps you may not want come preinstalled: a couple of naff games, three Amazon apps, LinkedIn, and discount shopping app Joom. But they can all be deleted using the usual method. Long press, tap uninstall, bye-bye junk.
The Realme GT Neo 3’s day-to-day performance is great and I have encountered zero bugs or serious glitches during testing, which is nice. Apps load quickly too, which might be helped by the fast internal storage, whose 730MB/s read speeds beat those of a classic SATA SSD you might find in a desktop PC.
This phone uses the MediaTek Dimensity 8100 SoC. Some people may be tempted to snub the Realme GT Neo 3 simply because it’s not got a Qualcomm on board, but in fact it might be time to rethink your preconceptions of MediaTek as this appears to be a very good processor.
Its CPU and gaming performance are both highly compelling; a Geekbench multi-core score of 4025 beats both the Snapdragon 888 and Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, although those chipsets’ single-core performance is slightly better.
The Realme GT Neo 3 earns 5391 points in 3D Mark’s Wild Life test, which is extremely similar to the score of a Snapdragon 888 phone. While it’s beaten by a Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, this phone simply does not suffer from the sort of 50% or more performance throttling you’ll see from those handsets.
3D Mark’s Wild Life Stress Test runs a 1-minute graphical benchmark 20 times to see how much the score dips as the phone heats up. The Realme GT Neo 3 lowest score was 96.7% of its highest, meaning there’s basically no noticeable throttling over a 20-minute play session. The phone wasn’t even particularly warm by the end either.
This is what I like to see: performance that you’ll actually benefit from in the real world rather than it being toned down dramatically after a few minutes thanks to heat build-up.
Benchmark comparison tests
Fortnite runs well on the Realme GT Neo 3, while simultaneously shows the cost of getting a phone with a slightly less commonly used processor; a “not officially supported” pop-up appears when you install the game, and it only runs in the default Medium graphics setting, at a maximum of 30fps.
The Dimensity 8100 could probably handle a higher grade of visuals than this, and the look of the game suffers as a result. This may change in the future, as the chipset is relatively new and, of course, so is the Realme GT Neo 3.
- Good primary camera
- Processing focuses on punchy images over fidelity
- Wide and macro cameras aren’t great
The Realme GT Neo 3 has three rear cameras. First off, there’s a 2MP macro camera you shouldn’t use, because you’ll get better much results by digitally zooming with the main camera.
The 8MP ultra-wide camera is much more useful, but there’s often an off-putting colour variance compared to the main camera. It tends to make skies appear much more blue than the primary, for example, and other shots have cool or purplish skews. And like most 8MP ultra-wides, image detail is going to look soft when you zoom further into the image and the dynamic range is not close to that of the main camera.
It’s your classic so-so mid-range ultra-wide. Still, it produces images good enough that I haven’t actively avoided using it, and that counts for something.
The Realme GT Neo 3 main camera is far more interesting because it uses the 50MP Sony IMX766 sensor. This is a large 1/1.56-inch chip, and is leagues better than the much lower-grade 50MP hardware now found quite often in cheaper mid-range phones.
The Realme GT 2 also uses this sensor, as does the pricey Oppo Find X5 Pro. So, should we expect similarly good things?
The Realme GT Neo 3 image quality and style is heavily coloured by Realme’s processing and image handling style. It’s something I also noticed in the Realme GT 2.
Realme loves a bright, punchy image, and goes to great lengths to avoid dull-looking mid-tones. The aim is clearly to generate the sort of pics you’ll want to instantly share to friends, or on social networks, rather than the more measured approach of something like the Google Pixel 6. Fidelity and realism aren’t always given top billing.
The Realme GT Neo 3 will occasionally overexpose parts of the picture, usually the edges of clouds, in order to keep pictures looking bright. In the most taxing scenes pictures can take on a very “HDR” look, the kind you might usually use Photoshop to achieve.
However, I don’t dislike these. And such scenes would likely appear dull in the darker areas were it not for this kind of processing. The blown highlights? They’re less easy to forgive.
Still, most of the images I took with the GT Neo 3 are punchy and bold, attention-grabbing without looking too overbaked. If the Realme aim is to produce “shareable” pic, I think it has succeeded.
The above picture shows the lens flare at play.
The above photo was taken using the phone’s 2x zoom.
In extreme HDR conditions photos can take on an almost fairytale character. Note there are still overexposed areas in the picture above, and the same exaggerated effect is present in the one below too.
The above picture was taken with 2x zoom, for use in the direct comparison below:
As you can see, the 2x zoom option does indeed boast a wee bit more detail than at 1x.
Seeing as the macro camera isn’t up to much (above, on the left) you might as well take close up pictures using the 2x zoom mode instead (above, right).
The Realme GT 3 Neo also takes bright night photos, ones that are in some ways a bit better balanced than the daylight ones at times. Auto mode shots are decent, and the slightly slower-to use Night mode offers significantly better dynamic range for those willing to spend a whole second to take a picture.
In the above example, the Realme GT 3 Neo managed to being out foliage detail in the bottom left, and light pollution in the night sky
There are a few other quibbles. The Realme GT 3 Neo doesn’t have the most natural-looking processing when you get down to pixel level. Tricky textures like leaves on far-away trees and ripples in water at a distance take on the character of a digital pattern — giving you the sense it’s an interpretation of what the “AI noise reduction” algorithm saw rather than just the sensor itself.
I also don’t think the phone’s screen gives a good account of the colour in images. It tends to make everything look slightly oversaturated, even when set to the “natural” mode. After viewing pictures on a colour-calibrated monitor, tones appeared much more lifelike.
This may tie into something I mentioned in the display section of this review. The Realme GT 3 Neo only calm down the display colour so much, and all profiles are slightly jazzed-up.
How about video? The Realme GT 3 Neo is fairly strong, although Realme has made some odd choices here.
You can shoot video at up to 4K resolution, 60 frames per second. This is stabilised too, but at 4K the phone only uses OIS to smooth out footage. That’s the little motor that moves the lens to compensate for motion.
4K footage looks great, but I wouldn’t call it ultra-smooth as OIS is not as effective as good software stabilisation (EIS) when there’s a lot of motion. At 1080p EIS kicks in. However, it seems to disable OIS because the 4K mode is much better at getting rid of those micro-judder movement visible from natural handshake when you try to keep the phone still. You have a choice of solo OIS or not-particularly-effective EIS at a lower resolution.
4K footage also looks a lot better, unsurprisingly. I’d recommend sticking with this mode most of the time.
The Realme GT 3 Neo also has an “AI” mode that uses Live HDR when necessary, and is recommended for low-light shooting. It can do a good job for low light indoors shooting, but for classic night scenes the 4K mode is often still better. It has lower dynamic range, but better fine detail on objects with a little light scattered across them.
Also, the AI mode is limited to 1080p 30 frames per second and the clips I shot all had noticeable dropped frames when panning. Normal 4K also looks decent thanks to the high-quality sensor.
And selfies? The Realme GT 3 Neo has a 16MP sensor, and it does a good job. In solid lighting there’s a lot of fine facial detail. There’s evidence of effective pixel binning in low light to retain some fine detail and the Auto HDR effectively evens out harsh backlighting, like windows behind your head.
- Solid enough but unremarkable battery
- 4500mAh capacity, not super-high
- Heavy users will rely on excellent fast charging
The Realme GT 3 Neo has 4500mAh battery, a little smaller than the 5000mAh that we’ve become used to seeing in phones of this calibre over the past couple of years.
It holds on OK, and significantly better than the Poco F4 Pro released recently. Power consumption when not actively using the phone is minimal. And I reckon if you don’t go out into the sunshine much or do anything too challenging you could be left with perhaps 20% charge left by the end of the day.
This was not my experience, as the Realme GT 3 Neo arrived during a precious couple of weeks of London sun. Time spent in the sun will naturally reduce run time as it forces the screen to its turbo brightness setting.
The Realme GT Neo 3 still lasted until bed time, but it would typically have 5% or less by the time I was thinking about clocking off. This is pretty typical for a 4500mAh phone, and suggests it is respectably efficient. It could do with 5000mAh capacity, as seen in the only fractionally thicker Realme GT 2.
Realme’s answer is 150W fast charging, which is much faster than anything Apple or Samsung offers, at any price – and it does deliver.
The Realme GT Neo 3 battery goes from completely dead flat to full in 20 minutes 22 seconds. It actually hits 100% at 17 minutes, but only stops drawing power 3.5 minutes later. It also reaches 50% just before the six-minute mark. While power draw dipped well below its 146W peak by just the second minute plugged in, it does maintain high power delivery rates right up until it hits 100%. The adapter draws 46W while tipping over from 99% to 100%, for example.
Just as impressive, the Realme GT Neo 3’s charger is not particularly heavy or huge. This is a more powerful adapter than plenty of laptop chargers, but is far smaller than those. Bear in mind that not all versions of the Realme GT Neo 3 have 150W charging; some have “just” 80W. But this is still so fast I would buy the lower-spec version if it sold at a significantly lower cost.
Should you buy it?
Fast charging, a punchy processor and capable main camera: the Realme GT Neo 3 delivers the essentials of a high-end phone at a reasonable price. It’s classic Realme in this respect.
If you’re not too bothered about 150W charging, the Realme GT 2 is possibly a better deal. Larger battery, better-supported processor and less contentious finishes for those not into “go faster” stripes.
The Realme GT Neo 3 is a powerful mid-range phone with a mix of high-end and lower-end parts that help keep the price sensible. Its MediaTek processor is flagship-grade powerful and very impressive in terms of heat generation and the consistency of its performance. The primary camera uses a great sensor with OIS. And the 150W charging is as high-spec as you can get, even if it only actually uses that much power for a fistful of seconds.
Lower-end parts include the secondary cameras, the plastic rim on the phone’s sides and the Full HD resolution display.
The Realme GT 2 from earlier in 2022 was arguably a better deal, has a larger battery and a processor game developers are more likely to optimise for. I preferred its design too. If you find that model selling for less, perhaps snap that one up instead.
How we test
We test every mobile phone we review thoroughly. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly and we use the phone as our main device over the review period. We’ll always tell you what we find and we never, ever, accept money to review a product.
Tested with synthetic benchmarks and real world use
There’s no water resistance rating here, so treat the Realme Gt 3 Neo carefully around swimming pools.
The phone does not have a headphone jack so you’ll have to use a wireless or USB-C pair/adapter.
There’s no memory card slot. Realme chooses to lean on high internal storage instead.
Trusted Reviews test data
The table below details all the test data we collected reviewing the GT 3 Neo and how it performed against key rivals.
Geekbench 5 single core
Geekbench 5 multi core
1 hour video playback (Netflix, HDR)
1 hour music streaming (online)
Time from 0-100% charge
Time from 0-50% charge
3D Mark – Wild Life
3D Mark – Wild Life Stress Test
Realme GT 3 Neo
Realme GT 2
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus
You can see a comprehensive breakdown of the GT 3 Neo and its closest rivals’ specs in the table below.
First Reviewed Date
Realme GT 3 Neo
50MP + 8MP + 2MP
75.6 x 8.2 x 163.3 MM
Android 12, Realme UI 3.0
1080 x 2412
MediaTek Dimensity 8100
Black, White, Blue
Realme GT 2
50MP + 8MP + 2MP
75.8 x 8.6 x 162.9 MM
Android 12, Realme UI 3.0
1080 x 2400
Snapdragon 888 5G
Paper White, Paper Green, Steel Black, Titanium Blue
Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus
50-megapixel wide, 12-megapixel ultrawide, 10-megapixel telephoto
75.8 x 7.6 x 157.4 MM
Android 12, OneUI 4.1
1080 x 2340
Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 / Exynos 2200
Phantom Black, White, Pink Gold, Green, Graphite, Sky Blue, Violet, Cream
TrustedReviews’ holds the fact that global warming is not a myth as a core value and will continuously endeavor to help protect our planet from harm in its business practices.
As part of this mission, whenever we review a product we send the company a series of questions to help us gauge and make transparent the impact the device has on the environment.
We currently haven’t received answers to the questions on this product, but will update this page the moment we do. You can see a detailed breakdown of the questions we ask and why in our sustainability info page.
An abbreviation for milliampere-hour and a way to express the capacity of batteries, especially smaller ones in phones. In most cases the higher the mAh, the longer the battery will last but this isn’t always the case.
The brightness level of a display. 300 nits is regarded as the minimum target for high-end screens.