Oneplus Nord CE 2 5g Review: A mixed bag
In 2020, the rules of the game changed when OnePlus decided to launch the Nord series. With the original Nord, the company returned to the budget department that was gradually vacated a few years ago. The phone was met with a good response, it helped to become a fan favorite
A few months later, OnePlus enhanced its mid-range game with a more aggressive priced device, the Nord CE. However, it was not a hit. And now, the company has launched a follow-up device in the form of Nord CE 2. On paper, the phone offers a good price for the ratio of performance with excellent design. But how does it work in real life? Let’s find out in our in-depth review of Nord CE2.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Create and design
OnePlus has a history of making handsome phones and Nord CE2 is no exception. It has clean lines and a glossy back panel. Compatible with other Nord series phones, the Nord CE 2 strives to keep things simple and sophisticated. However, due to the specific design decision, the phone now looks more attractive than other Nord series phones we have seen in the past.
The biggest of these is the decision to equip the phone with a raised camera module that expands quite a bit. This gives the phone a distinctive look from the back – unlike what we’ve seen on Nord series phones in the past. OnePlus Nord CE 2 is being launched in two colors. First up the gray mirror. OnePlus explains that it gives a smooth, mirror-like finish with a chic overtones that look like “luxury polished metal”. And the other is the more neglected Bahamas Blue Colorway. While OnePlus may want you to believe that it has been devalued and, at best, the reality is completely different. Make no mistake, it looks good. But sadly a phone that is trying to look good.
Due to the materials used in the device, the phone feels slippery in the hand and its rear panel is also a big smoke magnet. But due to the presence of a light-reflecting gradient pattern on the back, the effects of the smoke are somewhat reversed. In addition, the OnePlus Nord offers CE 2 and solid build quality, which of course proves to be the best for the phone.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Display
In the display section, the Nord 2 comes with a 6.43-inch 90Hz fluid AMOLED display that works as expected. The panel is HDR10 + certified and delivers a maximum brightness of 800 nits. It comes with HDR support for platforms like Netflix, YouTube and Amazon Prime Video.
The panel itself is equal to the course and works well for all purposes and purposes. It is very bright – even in direct sunlight – and produces vibrant and vibrant colors. OnePlus includes two display profiles. Of these, we found Gentle more balanced for all basic uses, however, if you want to watch movies or play games on Netflix, we recommend switching to Vivid Profiles for access to a wide range of color gamut. The OnePlus Nord CE 2’s panel also offers good viewing angles and text clarity up to the mark, and overall the display is great for games and videos and movies.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Specification and performance
The OnePlus Nord 2 is a phone for the public, and as such, the company has tried to cover all bases with the device, including the original hardware. Underneath the hood, we get a powerful mid-range chipset in the form of Dimension 900 SoC, which comes with either 6GB or 8GB RAM and 128GB storage. This hardware interacts with a copy of OxygenOS 11 based on Android 11 Although we would prefer Android 12, the wait won’t be too long as the device is expected to receive the Android 12 update soon.
This combination of Nord CE 2’s core hardware and clean software ensures that the phone offers enough to easily handle everyday tasks. In our time with the phone, there was no noticeable gap and the apps of daily use worked without any interruption.
However, it was in the benchmarks and gaming section that the phone left a bit to be desired. Using benchmarks like AnTuTu, Geekbench and 3DMark WildLife, we put the phone to the sword and in all these tests, the results thrown by the device were somewhat uncomfortable.
In fact, all the benchmarks we’ve run on the device prove that the OnePlus Nord CE 2 doesn’t even make the best use of the chipset in hand, its score is lower than the Oppo Reno 7 which plays under the same chipset. The screen. Although the difference in scores is not overnight, it is enough to point it out in this review.
Fortunately, though, Benchmark doesn’t take the phone’s low-performance performance to gaming, where the device has been able to run simple headlines like Call of Duty Mobile and Asphalt 9 Legends without any hassle. Playing these games, we didn’t notice any frame drops and the performance was generally smooth. The Nord CE 2 CPU also performed well in the throttling test, where it throttled to about 95 percent of its performance. This is a good indication that the phone handles its thermals well and that it can provide durable maximum performance during long gaming sessions.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Camera
The OnePlus Nord CE 2 offers some decent hardware in the camera section. The back of the phone has a triple camera with a 64-megapixel primary camera, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide camera and a 2-megapixel macro lens complete set-up. On the front, we have a 16-megapixel selfie camera.
In our limited time with the device, we found the Nord CE 2’s cameras to perform quite well. The device’s primary camera is capable of clicking some really nice pictures with some detail and clarity in daylight. Supported by OnePlus’s advanced photography algorithm, clicked images in daylight come with natural colors. This is also largely the case with ultra-wide lenses that manage to capture a good amount of detail and color accuracy is again at the point.
However, due to the low number of megapixels in this lens, the photos do not look as sharp as the primary lens. These photos have some barrel distortion effects, but fortunately it has been kept to a minimum.
The low light performance is decent for both lenses, and the phone’s computational photography algorithm often enhances the brightness of night mode shots, rather than supplementing the shot with more detail. In addition, these low light shots have some level of noise.
The phone also offers a 2-megapixel macro camera lens. But to make up only the numbers present in this one. This is largely due to its low megapixel count, as clicked macro shots using it come out with less detail and also lack sharpness. The front camera of the device does a decent job of capturing the right skin tone and details. I’ll be honest, this lens isn’t in the segment, but it’s good enough and it gets the job done.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Battery
The battery segment is where the OnePlus Nord CE 2 creates a lot of lost space. This is because the OnePlus not only equipped the device with a larger 4500mAh battery but also added support for its top-of-the-line 65W Warp Charge. Working these two together not only helps it get a top on the Nord CE but also brings it on par with the Nord 2.
After a full charge, the phone can usually last up to a day and a half in moderate use. However, if you plan to watch movies or play games on the device, the battery life is a bit damaged. To give our readers an idea, our video loop test means that Nord 2 manages about 9 hours of screen time, losing 40 percent charge, and drops 4 percent battery after 20 minutes for games like Call of Duty Mobile. When we run out of charge, we attach the device to the OnePlus 65W Warp charger so that the battery is about 50 percent full in 13 minutes and fully charged in about 32 minutes.
OnePlus Nord CE 2: Is it worth buying?
In my opinion, OnePlus Nord CE 2 does nothing outstanding. At this price point, there are other phones like iQOO Z3 and Realme 9 Pro + that offer better quality. Both these phones come with powerful hardware and Realme 9 Pro + also comes with somewhat better camera. But then again, these two phones also have their failure points. The iQOO Z3, for example, does not sport an AMOLED panel, where the Realme 9 Pro + loses the competition in the design category.
In comparison, Nord CE 2 successfully manages to avoid this trap. OnePlus’s new mid-range device doesn’t deliver segment-leading performance in any major segment. In fact, it stays strictly on top overall. But what makes Nord CE2 right is that it doesn’t fail in any of these sections. Whether it’s camera, general performance or even gaming, it offers top-notch results everywhere, establishing itself as a good competitor for your money – even if not a direct winner.