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OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Review: A Proper All-Rounder Got Expensive

Pros

  • Good Design
  • 90Hz AMOLED Panel
  • Good battery
  • Good Main Camera
  • Decent Performance

Cons

  • Videos are not good
  • Expensive
  • Plastic Build

Smart Talk Pvt. Ltd. has launched the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G in Nepal. It is OnePlus’s first affordable mid-tier phone for the year 2022.

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Review
OnePlus Nord CE 2

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G price in Nepal is Rs. 47,499 (8/128GB).

I have been using this device for a couple of weeks and I’ll tell you all about it in this review article.

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Specifications

  • Body: 160.6 x 73.2 x 7.8 mm, 173 g, Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
  • Display: 6.43 inches AMOLED, 1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~409 PPI density), 90Hz refresh rate, HDR10+, Corning Gorilla Glass 5
  • Chipset: MediaTek Dimensity 900 5G (6 nm)
  • CPU: Octa-core (2×2.4 GHz Cortex-A78 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • GPU: Mali-G68 MC4
  • Memory: 128GB 8GB RAM, UFS 2.2, supports microSD card
  • OS: Android 11, OxygenOS 11
  • Rear Camera: 64MP, f/1.79, 26mm (wide), 1/1.97″, 0.7µm, PDAF
  • Front Camera: 16 MP, f/2.4, 27mm, 1.0µm
  • Battery: Non-removable Li-Po 4500mAh battery, fast charging 65W, reverse charging
  • USB: Type-C 2.0, USB On-The-Go
  • Misc: Fingerprint (under display, optical), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Colors: Gray Mirror, Bahama Blue

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Price in Nepal: Rs. 47,499 (8/128GB)

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Review

Design

  • 160.6 x 73.2 x 7.8 mm
  • 173 g
OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Review
Design

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G looks exactly the same as the Oppo Reno 7. There’s a triple camera setup on the rear inside a rectangular module. And, it has the same plastic back with a glossy finish.

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The plastic back looks premium but the gray mirror variant is very reflective as the name suggests. While the CE 2 looks premium, the plastic frame and the chunkier bezel up front make it look like a budget phone.

Upfront, it has a punch hole on the top left and an in-display optical fingerprint scanner. The fingerprint scanner is fast and responsive, I did not encounter any issues with it.

Despite the plastic build, Nord CE 2 5G is well built and feels sturdy in hand.

The power button is on the right whereas the volume button and sim tray are on the left. Unlike expensive OnePlus phones, it doesn’t get the alert slider.

On the bottom, it has a 3.5mm headphone jack, a USB Type-C port, and a speaker. Also, it doesn’t have any official IP rating, however, there is a rubber gasket around the SIM tray which should provide some protection.

Display

  • 6.43 inches AMOLED
  • 90Hz
  • 1080 x 2400 pixels
  • Corning Gorilla Glass 5
OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Review
Display

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G still has the same 90Hz AMOLED display. But, OnePlus claims that it has full sRGB and D-P3 coverage along with HDR10+ certification.

The AMOLED display is a good one with vibrant colors and more than enough brightness. However, I did have some issues with Auto-Brightness outdoors, screen brightness would get too low and I had to manually adjust the slider.

The 90Hz refresh rate is not anything to boast about for a phone at this price tag as you can easily get a 120Hz display in this segment. Also, it doesn’t have an adaptive refresh rate. Overall, it is a smooth display and I did not have any touch issues or display ghosting.

Regarding the HDR capability, I was not able to verify it as the Netflix app did not list any HDR capabilities.

Camera

  • Rear Camera: 64MP, f/1.79, 26mm (wide), 1/1.97″, 0.7µm, PDAF
    • 8MP, f/2.2, 119˚ (ultrawide)
    • 2MP, f/2.4, (macro)
  • Front Camera: 16 MP, f/2.4, 27mm, 1.0µm
OnePlus Nord CE 2 Review
Camera

OnePlus Nord CE 2 has a triple camera system on the back consisting of a 64MP f1.7 main sensor, 8MP f2.2 ultra-wide sensor, and 2MP f2.4 macro sensor. On the front, it has a 16MP f2.4 sensor for selfies. The camera setup is the same as the Oppo Reno 7 except for the front camera.

NORMAL PHOTOS

In daylight, the main camera captures surprisingly good photos. The images are well exposed with good color accuracy. The dynamic range is not great and it tends to overexpose the shots sometimes.

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ULTRAWIDE PHOTOS

The ultrawide camera is decent but the detail level is not great as well as the dynamic range. The color is also slightly different than the main camera.

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LOW LIGHT PHOTOS

In low light, the Nord CE 2 tends to oversaturate the colors. The photos are quite good in Auto mode but the highlights are not under control. If you use the Night mode, it tends to bring more exposure in the dark areas but those areas tend to have low details. Thus, the image can look unappealing sometimes compared to Auto mode.

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FRONT CAMERA

On the front, there is a 16 MP selfie camera. In daylight, the selfies look good with good details but the background might look overexposed sometimes. Indoor, the photos did not have the same sharpness as outdoor photos and some photos turned out slightly blurry.

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VIDEOS

For videos, it can capture up to 4k 30fps from the main camera. The 4k footage has good detail and nice sharpness but the color is boosted. The pan is smooth but the stabilization is not great and the footages appear shaky.

The 1080p 30fps footages look smoother and stabilization is better than 4k footage but 1080p videos are a bit noisy. Furthermore, it also has an ultra steady mode that captures 1080 60fps footage.

Performance

  • MediaTek Dimensity 900 5G (6 nm)
  • Octa-core (2×2.4 GHz Cortex-A78 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)
  • Mali-G68 MC4
  • 128GB 8GB RAM, UFS 2.2

Nord CE 2 5G is powered by Dimensity 900 chipset from MediaTek.

MediaTek Dimensity 900 has Octa-core (2×2.4 GHz Cortex-A78 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55) CPU and Mali-G68 MC4 GPU. For memory, it comes with 8GB RAM and 128GB UFS 2.2 storage.

The Nord CE 2 5G sails through daily tasks without any hiccups. It runs smoothly and I did not face any issues with it.

GAMING

For gaming, we tested COD Mobile and Genshin Impact on the Nord CE 2. COD Mobile can be played at ‘Max’ fps with a ‘Low’ graphics setting. Likewise, you can play at ‘High’ Graphics at the ‘High’ fps setting.

COD Mobile

At Max fps, COD Mobile runs smoothly with average fps of 57.9 without any issues. There were no frame drops and stutters as well.

For Genshin Impact, I tested it on default medium settings and it ran decent. There were some frame drops and stutters as well but the performance was good overall.

Battery and OS

  • Non-removable Li-Po 4500mAh battery
  • 65W Fast Charging
  • Android 11
  • OxygenOS 11
OnePlus Nord CE 2 Review
OS

OnePlus Nord CE 2 has a 4500mAh battery and comes with 65W fast charging support.

With normal usage and the ambient display turned on, the Nord CE 2 was able to provide 5-6 hours of screen on time. Likewise, its 65W fast charging can charge the phone up to 48% in just 10 mins and up to 100% in just 50 mins.

As for OS, it runs on Oxygen OS 11.3 on top of Android 11 and it is supposed to receive two years of Android upgrade.

Oxygen OS 11.3 still has Oxygen OS styled launcher unlike the Oppofied launcher of Oxygen OS v12. The notification drawer, ambient display, and toggles are as same as the Nord 2.

One of the best things about Oxygen OS is the customization option.

Should You Buy OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G?

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is not exactly a bang-for-buck smartphone at Rs. 47,499.

It could have had a better display with a higher 120Hz refresh rate and a powerful chipset than the Dimenity 900 at this price tag. With that said, its camera setup is pretty good but not the best. However, its 65W fast charging support is outstanding.

Overall, Nord CE 2 is a good phone with blazing fast charging but it is expensive. This would have been a great phone if it was priced around 40k.

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What do you think about the OnPlus Nord CE2? If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments!


Also, watch our review video of the Samsung S22 Plus in Nepali.

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