We won’t pretend we have an intricate understanding of Realme’s naming and marketing strategies, but we’ll admit the GT Explorer Master we have for you today has quite the ring to its name. Promised for a European release, this particular member of the GT series comes with an unorthodox design, a great primary camera, and a nearly flagship-grade chipset.
A few things are out of the way first. We’re reviewing a Chinese version of the GT Explorer Master – it came without Google Play Services pre-installed, but works just fine with Google’s suite sideloaded. A proper International version will probably follow at some point.
Additionally, you may find the phone called Explorer Master Edition or Master Explorer, or something of the sort – it should be the same phone. In any case, don’t confuse it with the GT Master (non-Explorer) we reviewed recently.
Another point worth having in mind is that the Explorer Master will not be available in India, at least for the time being.
That lengthy preamble now behind us, let’s go over the key bits. The GT Explorer Master features the standout Suitcase design we saw on the GT Master, and we’re already off to a good start.
The curved-edge display scores it some additional points for style, but there’s also plenty of substance in it – 120Hz of bright AMOLED substance.
On the inside, there’s the Snapdragon 870 ticking, Qualcomm’s second-best currently on offer behind the 888.
Realme GT Explorer Master review
But it’s in the camera department that the Explorer Master has one of its key selling points. The 50MP primary unit is all kinds of great, boasting a big 1/1.56″ sensor, omnidirectional AF, and OIS. The 16MP ultrawide is also one better than the basic 8MP ultra wides on the other GTs, while the 32MP is shared with the GT Master, where we did like it a lot.
Here’s a recap of the most important specs of the Realme GT Explorer Master.
Realme GT Explorer Master specs at a glance:
Body: 159.9×72.5×8.0/8.8mm, 183.5/185g.
Display: 6.55″ Super AMOLED, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1100 nits (peak), 1080x2400px resolution, 20:9 aspect ratio, 402ppi.
Chipset: Qualcomm SM8250-AC Snapdragon 870 5G (7 nm): Octa-core (1×3.2 GHz Kryo 585 & 3×2.42 GHz Kryo 585 & 4×1.80 GHz Kryo 585); Adreno 650.
Memory: 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 12GB RAM; UFS.
OS/Software: Android 11, Realme UI 2.0.
Rear camera: Wide (main): 50 MP, f/1.9, 24mm, 1/1.56″, 1.0µm, omnidirectional PDAF, OIS; Ultra wide angle: 16 MP, f/2.2, 14mm, 123˚, 1/3.09″, 1.0µm; Macro: 2 MP, f/2.4.
Front camera: 32 MP, f/2.5, 26mm (wide), 1/2.74″, 0.8µm.
Video capture: Rear camera: 4K@30/60fps, 1080p@30/60fps, gyro-EIS; Front camera: 1080p@30fps.
Battery: 4500mAh; Fast charging 65W, 50% in 13 min, 100% in 33 min (advertised).
Misc: Fingerprint reader (under display, optical); NFC.
Realme GT Explorer Master unboxing
The GT Explorer Master arrives in the same overly large box that we received the GT Master in. Since both our review units are the Chinese version, their boxes have plenty of Chinese script on them, but regardless of region, there will be a lot of bold letters on the GT EM’s box.
Realme GT Explorer Master review
The box contents include a 65W SuperDart fast charger and a proprietary USB-A-to-C cable to facilitate that fast charging. Also bundled is a gray soft silicone cover case. The Suitcase versions get one that mimics the striped back of the phone, the plain ones get a plainer one.