OnePlus Nord 2T: More of the same with an improved camera
Impressive design, a good camera and a price that will leave you with more than NIS 2,000: We tested the new mid-range smartphone from the Chinese manufacturer OnePlus, which contains new options compared to other models in the category.
And who is it less suitable for anyway?
Here is the full review
Yinon Ben Shoshan
Thursday, June 23, 2022, 1:00 p.m.
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OnePlus Nord 2T (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
After years in which OnePlus chose not to enter the mid-range market, in the last two years it has been announcing at an impressive pace devices from the Nord series, the company's mid-range series that draws various capabilities from its flagship devices.
The next model in the series, the OnePlus Nord 2T, which was announced last May with an emphasis on advanced photography and high working memory, arrived in Israel through the official importer Cell Now - and we have already managed to take it for review.
For those of us who are unfamiliar, OnePlus is a brand belonging to the growing Chinese smartphone corporation BBK Electronics, which is responsible for several other reputable brands like Oppo, Vivo and realme.
These are several brands that are positioned differently, but end up coming from the same creative house.
Last year, Oppo's and OnePlus' cellular divisions were merged, but the two brands continue to operate in parallel.
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Design and structure
The OnePlus Nord 2T manages to create a beautiful balance between a large screen in a thin and impressive structure, and is reminiscent of other models in the series, but a bit may disappoint those who will use it without a cover.
The back, which is made of rough glass - and gives a luxurious look to the device - feels very smooth in the hand and not particularly pleasant to hold.
Probably the first thing you do is put it in a cover that will solve the problem.
The frame is made of plastic and not aluminum, and is slightly heavy - 190 grams and 8.2 mm thick. We will continue to the Nord 2T base, where there is a single speaker, SIM card tray and USB-C socket for charging, data transfer and also for sound. OnePlus, like The rest of the manufacturers have abandoned the headphone jack, and on the left side of the device are the volume keys, with the power button on the right side and a ring / silent switch above it.
Succeeds in creating a beautiful balance between a large screen in a thin and impressive structure (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
Up front, it does not look like much has changed at all and we got another smartphone that we have already encountered before, but a pleasant surprise awaited us: the Nord 2T screen is an AMOLED screen that offers Full HD + display resolution, high refresh rate of 90 Hz, as the current fashion order, And support for the HDR10 + standard.
This is a surprising quality screen, with good detail and excellent colors as expected from an AMOLED screen - all very deep and rich, with successful color detail.
On the other hand, this is not about the quality you get in flagship devices (which is perfectly fine).
The fingerprint reader is located at the bottom of the screen - as standard in recent years, which is in principle much more convenient and accessible to our taste than the readers that are in the buttons on the frame or back of the device.
After unsuccessful experience with other smartphones in the category that did not provide a successful fingerprint scan, here the reader does a great job and unlocks the device quickly.
Back made of rough glass that gives a luxurious look to the device (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
Interface and performance
The Nord 2T comes with the OxygenOS 12.1 interface, which is based on Android 12, and as part of the union with the Oppo brand it also incorporates certain elements from the ColorOS system.
In practice, the company guarantees two major Android updates and three years of security updates.
This is not terrible, but less than what other manufacturers promise - including Samsung and Apple that provide 5 and 6 years of security updates, respectively.
The icons have been redesigned by default and look the same as those you will find in OPPO's ColorOS.
The encouraging part: you can replace the design with settings - "customizations".
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The device combines a MediaTek Dimensity 1300 processor, 12 GB of working memory (RAM) and 256 GB of storage memory.
It also comes with support for the fifth generation network (5G) and an extra-large battery with a capacity of 4,500 mAh, including an 80-watt charger, which charges the device with SuperVOOC technology from 0 to 100% in half an hour.
The working memory management here is quite successful, and the performance of the device in general is good.
In practice, it can be said that apps come up quickly and respond great and it seems that even heavy applications do not pose a challenge for it, and we did not encounter unnecessary stuttering or hiccups, except for a few crashes of applications during use (but this is forgivable).
The video viewing experience (YouTube or Netflix) was also great.
What did we not like?
The sounds of the speaker.
Here it's obvious that OnePlus wanted to save: the high-volume speaker rattles, the bass is very flat and definitely does not emit a clean sound.
If you want to enjoy the sound, it is best to wear headphones.
When it comes to photography, the OnePlus Nord 2T follows in the footsteps of its predecessors - bringing a fairly advanced photography set to the cheap price range.
It features Sony's 50 megapixel sensor with optical image stabilization, and a pair of additional sensors with a resolution of 8 and 2 megapixels.
In fact, it is a device that provides photo results that are not usually seen in this price category, with a particularly stable autofocus system, along with the automatic identification of objects using AI.
For example, when we photographed a cat, the device knew how to recognize that it was a "kitten".
The slightly disappointing part has to do with colors, which have sometimes been more processed and come out too bright.
Photography in AI mode recognized that it was a "kitten" (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
By default the camera will not shoot at 50 megapixels and you will have to select this option in settings.
However, even in normal mode the images come out great - full of light (in ideal lighting conditions).
Even in night mode photography the camera manages to meet the challenge and the shots come out excellent, with good lighting without excessive deficit or smearing.
On the other hand, it fails to properly illuminate darker areas.
50 megapixel photography (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
Photo in automatic mode (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
Close-up shooting on automatic mode.
Photography with the OnePlus Nord 2T (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
Night photography with the OnePlus Nord 2T (Photo: Walla! Technology, Yinon Ben-Shoshan)
The OnePlus Nord 2T provides a good experience for those looking for a smartphone with good performance, an elegant look that connects you well to social networks, produces good photos, a battery that charges quickly and does not require you to put your hand deep in your pocket.
For those of you whose phone is a major tool and requires the performance of a first-class processor and an equally excellent camera - it is better to look for other alternatives, which will also be more expensive.
But it's important to remember: the main problem, as expected from middleware, is the short support for operating system updates.
If your ambition is to use a low-budget smartphone for more than 3 years, Google's iPhone SE or Pixel 6a may be a better choice.