We've seen Sony's IMX586 1/2-inch 48MP sensor appear in several higher-end devices in recent months but the Redmi Note 7 is now the first budget device to offer the chip. The sensor isn't really meant for outputting medium-format image resolution image files. Instead a quad-Bayer filter array allows for high-quality 12MP images with low noise levels and real-time HDR processing. The main chip is accompanied by a 5MP depth sensor for bokeh and similar effects.

Redmi, which used to be the budget line within the Xiaomi smartphone portfolio, has now been promoted to a proper sub-brand, similar to what Honor is to Xiaomi competitor Huawei. The Note 7 is the first device launched under this new sub-brand and does not only offer impressively looking main camera specs for the money.

You also get a 13 MP front camera, 6.3-inch Full-HD+ LCD display, Snapdragon 660 chipset a massive 4,000 mAh battery with quick charge support and a microSD slot.

In terms of RAM and storage you can choose between 3/32 GB, 4/64 GB, and 6/64 GB combinations. and there is a microSD slot as well.

The cheapest option will set you back $150 (CNY999) and even the largest memory version is only $210 (CNY1,399). Pre-orders have already started in China and shipments are scheduled for January 15. We'd expect the Redmi Note 7 to make the jump into the US and other regions in the nearer future. We'll have to wait for the first samples but it looks like the Note 7 should be high up the list of those who want good smartphone image quality at budget pricing in 2019.