OnePlus 7T Pro Review | NDTV Gadgets360.com


If you’ve been following OnePlus’ product cycle over the past few years, then it should have been obvious that ‘T’ versions of the 7 series were inevitable, although they have arrived sooner than expected. The OnePlus 7 (Review), positioned well below the superior 7 Pro, has already been refreshed. The new OnePlus 7T (Review) has borrowed many features from the OnePlus 7 Pro (Review), and its design, cameras, and display have all been improved, making it nearly as good as its more premium sibling.

So now, with the launch of the OnePlus 7T Pro, has the company made equally big changes to its higher tier model in just four months? Well, the short answer is no. The new OnePlus 7T Pro is a minor refresh with a slightly faster processor, a marginally bigger battery, and faster charging. It also ships with OxygenOS 10 out-of-the-box, just like the OnePlus 7T.

This might not look like much of an upgrade on paper, but is there more to it than meets the eye? It’s time to put the OnePlus 7T Pro to the test to see if these upgrades make any significant difference in our day-to-day usage.

 

OnePlus 7T Pro design

The easiest way to tell the new OnePlus 7T Pro apart from the OnePlus 7 Pro is by its colour. The new model comes only in a new ‘Haze Blue’ colour, at least at the time of its launch. This looks lighter than the Nebula Blue variant of the OnePlus 7 Pro. OnePlus has also created a McLaren Edition of the OnePlus 7T Pro, with orange themed accessories and a unique paint job for the phone itself.

 

The frosted, matte texture of the OnePlus 7T Pro’s glass rear feels great in the hand and doesn’t easily attract fingerprints, but is quite slippery. Other than colour, the only other differentiating factor is the placement of the laser autofocus sensor on the back, which has been moved from within the camera strip to the left of it. The OnePlus 7T Pro is practically identical to the OnePlus 7 Pro in terms of dimensions and weight. This means it’s still a little heavy, and not the easiest to manage with one hand.

Other design elements have stayed the same. You get 3D Corning Gorilla Glass on the back and front; a pop-up selfie camera; an in-display fingerprint sensor; stereo speakers; and all the same ports and buttons in the same place. That includes the textured alert slider on the right, for quickly switching between ring, vibrate, and silent modes.

The OnePlus 7T Pro standard (left) and McLaren Edition (right) side by side

 

The display is the same 6.67-inch QHD+ Fluid AMOLED panel with a 90Hz refresh rate and support for multiple colour profiles, including DCI-P3 that we saw on the OnePlus 7 Pro. It’s also rated to support HDR 10+ encoded videos, for displaying a wider spectrum of colours and higher brightness. We found the display to be excellent in most usage conditions. Colours are vibrant and well saturated, the brightness is very good even under sunlight, and viewing angles are great. The OnePlus 7T Pro ships with a pre-applied screen protector, which is a little annoying since lint and fibres stick to its edges quite easily.

The USB Type-C port and SIM tray are on the bottom. The tray only accepts two Nano-SIM cards, and there’s no support for a microSD card. As before, you don’t get a headphone jack either. Around the back, the vertical camera strip creates a small bump on the otherwise even surface. As we mentioned before, this phone can be slippery, but thankfully there’s a bundled silicone case.

Inside the oversized red retail box, which is very similar to that of the OnePlus 7T, you’ll find the usual accessories including the aforementioned transparent silicone case, a Type-C cable, a SIM eject tool, warranty information, some stickers, and the charger. The latter is now called the Warp Charge 30T charger, where the ‘T’ signifies faster charging over the previous-generation Warp Charge 30 charger, even though both are rated at 30W.

OnePlus 7T Pro specifications and software

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ SoC replaces the Snapdragon 855 which powered the OnePlus 7 Pro. This newer chip made its debut with the Asus ROG Phone 2 (Review), but is now seen in many recent flagships, including the OnePlus 7T. Qualcomm touts around a 15 percent improvement in graphics rendering performance, and the chip’s ‘Prime’ core runs at a higher clock speed. We’ve tested phones with this newer chip and honestly, with regular usage it’s quite difficult, if not impossible, to actually tell the difference between the Snapdragon 855 and 855+.

OnePlus 7T Pro display oneplusThe display on the OnePlus 7T Pro is HDR 10+ certified

 

The OnePlus 7T Pro is only available with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage, unless you choose the McLaren edition. Like before, the smartphone features LPDDR4X RAM and UFS 3.0 storage.

You also get dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5, NFC, dual 4G VoLTE, support for multiple satellite navigation systems, the usual suite of sensors, and Dolby Atmos. There’s no FM radio and the 7T Pro still lacks an official IP rating for waterproofing. This would have been the perfect time to add wireless charging, considering it’s the company’s flagship device, but sadly, OnePlus hasn’t done so.

When it comes to software, it’s hard to find any company that does a better custom Android skin than OnePlus’ OxygenOS. On the OnePlus 7T Pro, you get OxygenOS 10 which is based on Android 10. The security is up-to-date too, with the September patch pre-installed. Compared to OxygenOS 9.5, which debuted with the OnePlus 7 Pro, version 10 has some notable changes, partly thanks to Android 10. We’ve talked about most of these in our OnePlus 7T review, but we’ll skim over some of them here.

OnePlus 7T Pro apps oneplusOxygenOS 10 looks slick on the OnePlus 7T Pro

 

Reading Mode now gets a new ‘chromatic’ option, which reduces the saturation level of colours so it’s more comfortable to the eye when viewing content. You can manually set which apps use the monochrome and chromatic options, so the display changes accordingly when they are launched. Game Space is redesigned and now offers a more intuitive way to set up customised profiles for each game.

You can choose to use gesture-based navigation, instead of the three-buttons system. This works well, except for the ‘back’ gesture, which can conflict with pull-out menus in some apps such as Slack. We really like the design of the new ‘Customisation’ menu in the Settings app, which shows previews of all visual elements in one place and lets you change very specific elements such as the clock style and accent colour.

Android 10 features such as auto-suggested replies in message notifications, a new sharing menu for files, and new privacy and permission notifications are also present.

OnePlus 7T Pro performance and battery life

We tested the OnePlus 7T Pro for a little less than a week, and we had a very positive experience. Similar to the OnePlus 7 Pro, the OnePlus 7T Pro feels extremely fast and snappy. We had absolutely no delays when browsing through the various menus in Android, and the 8GB of RAM comfortably allowed a good number of apps to stay running in the background, making it easy to switch back and forth.

The 90Hz display makes scrolling through menus feel fluid, and some games such as Rayman Adventures can actually take advantage of it, running at the full 90Hz refresh rate. This phone isn’t the easiest to handle with one hand, but it’s just a matter of getting used to its size.

OnePlus 7T Pro alert popup cam oneplusThe OnePlus 7T Pro’s pop-up camera does a good job with face unlock

 

We also liked how fast the face recognition and in-display fingerprint sensor are. The selfie camera module is quick to pop up to authenticate you, and it takes no longer than a standard front camera. There is the faint whirring sound of the motor every time it ejects and retracts, but it’s not at all distracting. The fingerprint sensor, like last time, is also extremely quick. All it takes is a quick tap on the display to unlock the phone.

Regular app and gaming performance is solid. We were unable to run all our usual benchmarks, since OnePlus has blocked many of them on pre-release devices in order to prevent the model number and specs from leaking, but we did manage to run a few tests. Geekbench 5 returned 773 and 2,789 points for the single and multi-core tests respectively, while GFXbench gave us 60fps and 41fps in the T-Rex and Manhattan 3.1 gaming tests. PUBG Mobile ran smoothly at the ‘High’ preset, and gameplay was lag-free. The back of the phone did get a little warm during gameplay but never got uncomfortably hot.

Media files look and sound great on the OnePlus 7T Pro, thanks to the HDR display and good stereo speakers. Dolby Atmos works even for the speakers. The stereo effect is noticeable, but not as good as on, say, the Asus ROG Phone 2 (Review). The main speaker is louder and produces richer sound than the earpiece, but the two of them don’t sound too unbalanced with casual listening.

OnePlus 7T Pro alert compare laser AF oneplusThe OnePlus 7T Pro (left) looks identical to the 7 Pro (right), except for the colour and the re-positioned laser autofocus sensor

 

The battery capacity of the OnePlus 7T Pro has increased by a tiny bit to 4,085mAh, from 4,000mAh on its predecessor. With the display resolution left to ‘Auto Switch’ and the refresh rate at 60Hz, our battery loop test ran for 15 hours and 12 minutes. Setting the refresh rate to the default 90Hz, we got a lower figure of 11 hours and 19 minutes of runtime. This is a little less than the OnePlus 7 Pro’s numbers, but that was on older firmware based on a seasoned build of Android 9 Pie. Things could improve with future versions of OxygenOS, and as Android 10 matures.

Real-world battery usage was much better. With a full day of heavy usage at the 90Hz refresh rate, which included testing the cameras, streaming music over Bluetooth, and some benchmarks, we still had about 20 percent left in the battery at night. With a little more frugal usage, we were getting more than a full day’s worth of battery life but not enough to take us through a full second day. This is more than satisfactory, especially since the phone charges really quickly.

The Warp Charge 30T charger managed a 59 percent charge in half an hour and a 96 percent charge in one hour. It took about five to six minutes more to top the phone up completely. These are very good charging speeds, and will come in especially handy if you’re in a hurry.

OnePlus 7T Pro cameras

The OnePlus 7T Pro features the same camera setup as the OnePlus 7 Pro. This includes a primary 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor with OIS and an f/1.6 aperture; an 8-megapixel telephoto camera with OIS and an f/2.4 aperture; and a 16-megapixel ultra wide-angle camera with an f/2.2 aperture. In the front, we have a 16-megapixel, fixed-focus pop-up camera for selfies.

However, the camera app has gotten a host of new features such as a Super Macro mode and the ability to use Nightscape with the wide-angle camera. You still can’t adjust the level of background blur in Portrait mode, but you can now use either the telephoto or main camera to capture a portrait shot.

In daylight landscapes, the OnePlus 7T Pro captured good details and colours. HDR works well, exposure is balanced nicely, and there’s a good amount of dynamic range even with backlit subjects. Overlay buttons in the viewfinder let you quickly toggle between the different camera sensors.

The wide-angle camera is useful for framing more in each shot. Details are slightly poorer compared to shots taken with the main sensor, but this is only noticeable if you zoom in to the image. The telephoto camera is useful for getting closer to your subject. Details are good, and there is optical stabilisation, but focusing is a little slower.

Shot using the primary camera on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

Shot using the ultra wide-angle camera on the OnePlus 7T Pro

 

Shot using the telephoto camera on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

Close-up shot from the primary camera of the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

We had a slight issue with the OnePlus 7 Pro’s autofocus system when it came to close-up shots, but thankfully, this has been fixed – well, almost. We came across this issue once or twice when using the OnePlus 7T Pro but not as often as we did with the OnePlus 7 Pro. Close-ups had very good details and colours, with a pleasing shallow depth-of-field effect. Colours could look boosted at times, especially reds. Some edges of close-up subjects still lacked good definition though, and we noticed a bit of colour bleeding around the edges of objects in some shots.

There’s a new Super Macro mode, which we also saw on the OnePlus 7T (Review). This lets you get as close as 2.5cm to your subject. It uses the ultra wide-angle camera, and works very well. It takes a bit of patience to get the focus right, as there’s a lot of hunting even with slight movement, but we managed to get some good macros. It’s a much better implementation compared to phones with dedicated low-resolution macro cameras, as you can get much crisper shots.

In Super Macro mode, the viewfinder still appears to give you the option to switch between cameras, but what it’s actually doing is digitally zooming in with the ultra-wide camera itself, to emulate the perspective of the other lenses.

Shot using Super Macro mode on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

Portrait shot using the telephoto lens on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

Selfie HDR test (tap to see full-sized OnePlus 7T Pro camera sample)

 

The selfie camera captures decent shots under good light. HDR worked well, giving us well-exposed selfies even when shooting against bright light. Skin tones had a slight reddish hue, which we didn’t quite like, but details were decent. Videos are recorded at up to 1080p with the front camera, and there’s electronic stabilisation too.

Portrait mode works well when shooting people and objects. The camera app now lets you use either the telephoto lens (for extreme close-ups, like headshots) or the primary lens (if you want more of the background in the frame), which is handy. You still can’t adjust the level of blur before or after the shot is taken, but thankfully, the applied effect looked pleasing most of the time in our experience.

The OnePlus 7T Pro did well at reproducing accurate colours when shooting in low light. Focusing speed dipped a little and there were instances when the focus in landscapes and close-ups was too soft. At times, we had to manually tap the viewfinder to get the phone to lock focus properly. The main camera managed to pick up fairly good detail, but shadow regions did have a bit of noise.

Shot using the telephoto camera in low light (tap to see full sized image)

 

Shot using primary camera on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap for full-sized image)

 

Shot with ultra wide-angle camera and Nightscape on the OnePlus 7T Pro (tap to see full-sized image)

 

The wide-angle camera’s narrower aperture doesn’t let it capture very bright images, but thankfully, you can now use Nightscape with this sensor too, making it more useful in low light. Keep in mind that while Nightscape does help brighten scenes and produces better detail in shadowy areas, textures on objects tend to look a little artificial. We’re also happy to see the phone actually using its telephoto camera in most of our low-light samples, rather than digitally zooming in using the main sensor.

Video recording tops out at 4K 60fps. Colours continue to be terribly exaggerated at 4K, irrespective of the framerate, which is an issue we had with the OnePlus 7 Pro. Reds, especially, look almost radioactive. Colours are a bit more under control at 1080p. We found that continuous autofocus worked very well across resolutions.

The OnePlus 7T Pro uses a combination of optical and electronic stabilisation whenever possible when shooting at 1080p 30fps. You can manually switch between the sensors while recording, but only at that resolution and framerate. The switching feels a little abrupt and there’s a noticeable drop or gain in image quality, depending on which sensor you switch to. Stabilisation is also available at 4K, but you can only use the primary camera. The phone does have a Super Steady stabilisation mode, which records at 1080p only using the wide-angle camera. With this, the frame is cropped heavily to get rid of of the fish-eye effect, but in return, you get gimbal-level stabilisation.

Low-light video quality still needs a lot of work. Even at 1080p, the quality is below average as there’s a lot of visible grain even in relatively well-lit scenes, and stabilisation causes a lot of jitter and distortion when you’re moving about.

The camera app is clutter-free and easy to navigate. The main shooting modes are just above the shutter button. Additional ones hidden in a separate menu that you can swipe up to reveal, but this isn’t really obvious and some users might miss it completely. Controls for various settings line the upper portion of the viewfinder. You can also shoot in the full 48-megapixel resolution by using Pro mode, but again, you’ll have to dig around to actually find it. OnePlus has mentioned the ability to capture 960fps slow-motion video with the OnePlus 7T Pro, but our unit only had 240fps and 480fps options, so this might come with a future software update.

Verdict

Looking at the OnePlus 7T Pro, we can’t help but feel as though OnePlus was obligated to refresh the OnePlus 7 Pro, just so it wouldn’t look old and irrelevant now that we have the OnePlus 7T. We would have liked to have seen more meaningful upgrades, like the OnePlus 7T received, but this isn’t the case with the OnePlus 7T Pro. There isn’t much differentiation between the two product tiers anymore, apart from the higher-resolution curved display and the pop-up camera on the more expensive model.

The OnePlus 7T Pro looks and feels premium, and does a lot of things well. It features an excellent display, good stereo sound, very good software, and useful camera capabilities. It’s still a bit on the heavier side though, and we’re still waiting on wireless charging and IP-rated waterproofing. The new software has fixed some of the niggles that we previously encountered with the cameras, but this phone still struggles with capturing video, especially in low light.

This is one of the best looking phones at Rs. 53,999, but this is also a pretty steep premium over the OnePlus 7T, which offers very similar features. Some might argue that the design and display alone are worth the premium over the OnePlus 7T, and if you fall in that camp, then you won’t be disappointed. If you want to go even crazier, you could opt for the McLaren Edition of the OnePlus 7T Pro at Rs. 58,999, which gets you 12GB of RAM, a fancier case, and a unique colour scheme.

The OnePlus 7T Pro is a good flagship, but keep in mind that the Google Pixel 4 is right around the corner, and going by recent rumours, it could be priced very competitively. It just makes good sense to wait a bit and see how things play out, before spending this kind of money.



Source link

Share: