OnePlus 5 review: Doing the math right?

OnePlus 5 review: Doing the math right?

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Strange that with a name like that OnePlus doesn’t know simple addition. Oh well, tetraphobia is real and many product lines avoid the number 4, so it’s anything but odd for a Chinese company to skip straight to 5. That, and the 3T was sort of like a 4.

But wait, to say that the OnePlus 5 carries more than a passing resemblance to the iPhone 7 Plus would be an understatement. So what we have here is a new take on basic math: 1+5=7+ (minus $300). A simple enough equation for most people we guess.

Okay, seriously now.

A second camera has cropped up on the OnePlus’ back, prompting the OP designers to go for a total makeover. The source of inspiration is obvious: Apple’s latest Plus has been emulated all the way to the placement of the secondary mic next to the pair of lenses. Makes you wonder if they run the sketches by the legal department but even the lawyers would agree the OnePlus 5 is one cool-looking phone.

The OnePlus 5 is powered by a Snapdragon 835 and its set of Kryo cores that all top models have this season. Few of them boast 8 gigs of RAM though, which the OnePlus 5 does proudly offer. That crazy amount of RAM is matched by 128GB of storage in the more premium OnePlus 5 version. The other packs a more pedestrian 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. We guess it’ll take a long and hard thought to make up your mind considering the storage you get out of the box is all there is.

All three camera modules (selfie cam included) come courtesy of Sony, the 5.5-inch FullHD AMOLED display is unchanged from the 3 and 3T, battery capacity is 3,300mAh, complete with the proprietary Dash charge tech for quick top-ups, and the phone runs the latest Android 7.1.1 – the ‘flagship killer’ slogan may be gone, but the mentality remains.

OnePlus 5 key features

  • Body: Anodized aluminum body, 2.5D Gorilla Glass 5 display glass. Midnight Black and Slate Gray color schemes.
  • Display: 5.5″ AMOLED, 1,920×1,080px resolution, 401ppi; sRGB/DCI-P3 color space support.
  • Rear cameras: Main camera: Sony IMX398 sensor, 16MP, 1.12µm pixel size, f/1.7 aperture, dual pixel phase detection autofocus, EIS; multi-shot noise reduction; 2160p/30fps video recording. Tele camera: Sony IMX350 sensor, 20MP, 1.0µm pixel size, f/2.6 aperture.
  • Front camera: Sony IMX371 sensor, 16MP, 1.0µm pixel size, f/2.0 aperture; 1080p/30fps video recording.
  • OS/Software: Android 7.1.1 Nougat; OxygenOS custom overlay.
  • Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon 835: octa-core CPU (4xKryo 280 + 4xCortex-A53), Adreno 540 GPU.
  • Memory: 6/8GB of LPDDR4X RAM; 64/128GB UFS 2.1 storage.
  • Battery: 3,300mAh Li-Po (sealed); Dash Charge proprietary fast charging (5V/4A).
  • Connectivity: Dual SIM; 3-Band carrier aggregation, LTE Cat.12/13 (600Mbps/150Mbps); USB Type-C (v2.0); Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac; GPS, Beidou, Galileo; NFC; Bluetooth 5.0.
  • Misc: Front-mounted fingerprint reader; single speaker on the bottom; 3.5mm jack; tri-position Alert Slider.

Main shortcomings

  • No ingress protection
  • No microSD slot for expansion
  • No stereo speakers

Not all is great – the absence of a microSD slot for one, but there’s no waterproofing either, not even splash protection. If you’re running with the big boys, better be ready to brave the puddles. Even if it’s more affordable than most, an asking price of $500 is not exactly peanuts, so you can’t just get a new one should you drown the first.

OnePlus 5 press images - OnePlus 5 review OnePlus 5 press images - OnePlus 5 review OnePlus 5 press images - OnePlus 5 review OnePlus 5 press images - OnePlus 5 review
OnePlus 5 press images

Some of us here insist that stereo speakers are mandatory, and they won’t be happy to know that OP hasn’t ticked that box for them. Even the stereo-skeptics agree that an extra channel can’t hurt.

You can’t do a review without a phone (though we’ve seen folks try), so the OnePlus 5 needs to come out of its box first. Join us on the next page where we get busy exploring.

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