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Hands on: OnePlus 8 Pro review

This new OnePlus four-lens camera phone is the more affordable cousin of the Oppo Find X2 Pro

(Image: © Basil Kronfli)

Our Verdict

Even if it isn’t necessarily the best smartphone at one thing in particular, the OnePlus 8 Pro is an across the board corker that brings Sony’s latest smartphone camera sensor to a newly affordable price.

For

  • Stunning screen
  • Fast wireless charging
  • Stacks of power

Against

  • Pricier than past OnePlus’s
  • No expandable storage
  • No periscope camera

We loved the Oppo Find X2 Pro, but it’s one of the most expensive Android flagships out now. For anyone who doesn’t need sensational telephoto imaging or 512GB storage, however, OnePlus has created something of a Find X2 Pro ‘lite’ in the OnePlus 8 Pro.

Running with the same screen and power - a 120Hz 6.78-inch QHD+ Fluid Display panel, plus a Snapdragon 865 the 8 Pro is a true flagship. It also sports the same main camera sensor as the Find X2 Pro, Sony’s new IMX 689 sensor. So while it doesn’t get you as close to the action as some superzooms out there, it’s still a cracking camera phone on paper.

Design and screen

(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

The 8 Pro is a looker, available in three colors, Onyx Black, Glacial Green or Ultramarine Blue. Our Glacial Green sample is frosted, however, the other colors are high-gloss, all sleek in their own rights. A first for OnePlus, this phone is also IP68 water and dust resistant.

The Fluid AMOLED display is clear as day, with a 3168 x 1440 resolution and a long 19.8:9 aspect ratio. It supports HDR10+ content and features an advanced blue light filter certified by TUV Rhineland, so it is kind to eyes too. The fact the screen is 120Hz is also a boon, bringing its smoothness up to speed with the Galaxy S20-series and the iPad Pro. 

It’s a big phone, and the curved display was a challenge to use one-handed on occasions. Specifically, edge palm rejection wasn’t great, though this is likely going to be improved in a software update. We had a similar experience with the identically curvy Oppo Find X2 Pro, and it was swiftly corrected for. 

Camera

(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

The OnePlus 8 Pro features four cameras, a primary 48MP sensor with an f/1.78 aperture lens, a 3x telephoto camera with 8MP resolution, a 48MP ultra-wide camera, and a new Color Filter Camera, which can grab interesting looking shots that distort reality.

The results in initial tests were promising, with decent levels of clarity and shallow depth of field in shots that once would have looked totally flat on a smartphone. The OnePlus 8 Pro can also track pets, keeping their faces sharp which we tested out on a couple of cats, and it seems to work.

What’s more, the 8 Pro’s Nightscape mode has been refined to work across the primary and ultra-wide cameras, and the shutter can stay open for as long as 30 seconds in Pro mode. As for the selfie camera, it’s a perfectly respectable 16MP fixed-focus module, and the phone can also record video at up to 4K resolution at 60fps.  

Additional specs

(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

Powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, coupled with LPDDR5 RAM, the OnePlus 8 Pro is fast, and it’s fast data speeds also match, with the 5G modem enabling 7.5Gbps theoretical top speeds.

The phone packs either 8GB RAM and 128GB storage (£799) or 12GB RAM + 256GB storage (£899), which undercuts the main big-screened competition, and matches the Galaxy S20 like-for-like. 

Unlike older OnePlus devices, however, the 8 Pro’s specs also stack up better across the board, with the introduction of wireless charging to the OnePlus Pro family. Warp Charge 30 Wireless, a speedy new wireless charging feature powers up the phone using the Qi standard, and reaches 30W speeds with a compatible OnePlus charger (£69).

Add to the mix OnePlus’s trademark Oxygen OS, a beautifully clean take on Android 10, not to mention stereo speakers and a lot of smart modes, like Reading Mode, to help the day-to-day experience along, and the 8 Pro looks like it could be one of the best value flagships across the board.

OnePlus 8 Pro: Early verdict

(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

Even if it isn’t necessarily the best smartphone at one thing in particular, the OnePlus 8 Pro is an across the board great phone, which introduces water resistance and wireless charging to the series. 

With a starting price of £799 climbing up to £899, prices are climbing year-on-year, but so too are the specs. In turn, fans of OnePlus’s once outstanding value may turn to other brands like Realme and Xiaomi in 2020, but anyone after a Samsung Galaxy S20 alternative that delivers a bit more bang for buck, you’d likely be well served with one of these.  

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