OnePlus 10 Pro

OnePlus 10 Pro

Introduction:

OnePlus’ latest flagship is officially here. After launching in China several weeks ago, and now the OnePlus 10 Pro is available outside of China. The OnePlus 10 Pro is powered by the Qualcomm’s flagship Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, a larger battery, a new selfie camera and revamped ultrawide camera.

In theory, these improvements feel more like they should belong to a vanilla OnePlus 10, with more significant upgrades reserved for the “Pro” model. The recent rumor of a OnePlus 10 “Ultra” to arrive later this year is starting to make more sense – speculatively, of course.

Body

163×73.9×8.55mm, 201g; Gorilla Glass 5 back, aluminum frame, ceramic camera cover.

Display

6.7″ Fluid AMOLED with LPTO, 1 billion colors, 120Hz, HDR10+, 1440x3216px resolution, 20.1:9 aspect ratio, 525ppi.

Chipset

Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (4 nm): Octa-core (1×3.00 GHz Cortex-X2 & 3×2.50 GHz Cortex-A710 & 4×1.80 GHz Cortex-A510); Adreno 730.

Memory

8GB, 128GB; 12GB, 256GB; LPDDR5, UFS 3.1.

Operating System

Android 12, Oxygen OS 12.

Rear Camera

Wide (main): 50 MP Sony IMX 789, f/1.8, 23mm, 1/1.43″, 1.22µm, Muilti-Autofocus: All-Pixel Omni-directional PDAF + LAF + CAF, OIS;

Ultra wide angle: 50 MP Samsung ISOCELL JN1, 1/2.76″, f/2.2, 150˚;

Telephoto: 8 MP, 1.0µm f/2.4, PDAF, 3.3X optical zoom. OIS.

Selfie Camera

32 MP, 26mm (wide), 0.7µm, EIS, fixed focus.

Video capture

Rear camera: [email protected], [email protected]/60/120fps, [email protected]/60/240fps, [email protected], EIS;

Front camera: [email protected], [email protected]

Battery

5,000mAh; 65W SuperVOOC (80W in Asia), 100% in 34 min (advertised), 50W AirVOOC, 100% in 47 min (advertised), Reverse wireless charging.

Misc.

Fingerprint reader (under display, optical); NFC; flick-detect sensor, front RGB sensor. SLA X-axis linear motor.

Unboxing:

The OnePlus 10 Pro is shipped in a standard OnePlus package: a sturdy red box with all the essentials included. The retail bundle includes a protective case.

The package includes OnePlus stickers, documentation, SIM-ejection tool, 80W SuperVOOC charging adapter and a USB-A to USB-C cable.

This charging cable is USB-A to USB-C and thus incapable of supporting USB-Power Delivery standard. This charger can only charge OnePlus and Oppo phones, but everything else will get the standard 10W, making it pretty much less useful.

Design:

In previous generations, we could make out a picture as to what the next OnePlus phone was going to look like based on recently released devices from OnePlus’ sister brands. With the OnePlus 10 Pro, the story seems to be different, since it feels like the Oppo sub-brand is making an effort to stand out from other smartphone brands under BBK.

The OnePlus 10 Pro has a… less “ordinary” looking design this time around. After having a rectangular-shaped bump with the OnePlus 9 Pro and a linear, vertical setup on the 8 Pro, the new 10 Pro has a flag-shaped that merges with the frame and extends to the back. This gives the 10 Pro a design that stands out among other flagship phones. The three cameras and the LED ring does have the uniqueness that can definitely make heads turn.

Interestingly, only two of the camera rings, main camera and telephoto shooter, are slightly raised above the camera island. The ultrawide cam and LED flash ring sit just below the surface of the bump.

OnePlus seems to have taken the looks of the sandstone finish, for which it is known for, and made it feel like premium matte glass finish. Under soft light, the finish looks like most other matte phones, but under a bright lamp or direct sunlight, you’ll see what resembles the metallic paint of high-end vehicles. This is identical to the finish we saw on the Black OnePlus 9RT.

Although it weighs 201g it is quite well-balanced. It is a great experience holding the device in hand – it isn’t slippery, and the coarse but soft texture doesn’t attract fingerprints. Do note that the phone is large with a footprint measuring 163 x 73.9 x 8.55 mm. The OnePlus 10 Pro does not have any official IP rating except for the T-Mobile variant in the US, where it comes with IP68 rating. You can rest assured if you accidently dropped your phone in a puddle, but we would suggest not bringing it with you to a water park.

Aside from the new camera setup that merges into the frame, the layout of the 10 Pro is what we’ve come to expect from the last couple of predecessors. The phone has a flat top, though opposite to the assumption – you can’t balance it on its head. The top has a noise-canceling microphone here for calls, and the in-call receiver is accommodated in a thin slit along the top of the display.

The left side of the frame is home to the volume rocker, and the right-side accommodates the power button and the physical Alert slider. It has three positions: down is Ringer ON, middle is Vibrate only and the top is Silent. Like the slider, the keys are slim and are quite clicky.

The down side of the phone is home to the in-call microphone and the loudspeaker port. There’s also a nanoSIM tray here with no option for expandable storage.

The aluminum frame is slim along the sides of the phone, with a matte anodized finish that nearly matches the backplate in both color and texture.

Overall, the 10 Pro’s design is spectacular. The bold camera bump and sparkly matte finish make it stand out from other flagships out there. OnePlus is known for the colorful and iridescent finishes, it took a step back with the new OnePlus 10 Pro’s volcanic Black and Emerald Green colors. There’s a white variant too, though that one is currently limited to China.

Display:

The OnePlus 10 Pro is equipped with a 6.7” AMOLED display with 3216 x 1440 resolution. The display panel uses second-generation LTPO technology and dynamic refresh rate that maxes out at 120Hz. The panel features 10-bit color depth and 100% coverage of the sRGB and Display P3 color spaces.

Although this panel is the same as the one on the 9 Pro, the 10 Pro now has “Dual Calibration”. Meaning, the 10 Pro has been calibrated at 500 nits, as well as 100 nits for more accurate colors across multiple levels of brightness.

OnePlus claims 1300 nits of peak brightness. However, the brightness hit the 780 nits mark with SDR content, although it should be possible to reach the 1300 nits mark with HDR under the right conditions and a smaller APL. With manual adjustments you can expect nearly 500 nits of peak brightness for SDR content. The lowest brightness measured was a dim 2 nits.

The display color setting gives you three options to choose from – Vivid, Natural and Pro. Vivid is calibrated to the DCI P3 standard, while Natural is tuned to the sRGB standard.

Pro mode has two sub-options, Cinematic, which sets the display to the Display P3 color space, and Brilliant, which sets the screen to its widest native color gamut. Regardless of which color preset you go for, you always have the option of manually tweaking the color temperature, although it’s a simple slider without an exact color temperature readout.

The display supports dynamic refresh rate. While you are interacting with the display, it can refresh at up to 120Hz, but the moment you stop it slowly drops down 60Hz, 10Hz or even 1Hz.

Battery life & Charging speed:

OnePlus has revamped the battery on its flagship to 5,000mAh dual-cell battery. Like with previous dual-cell batteries, two smaller batteries running in parallel, both charging and depleting, making it possible to recharge the entire capacity of the battery quicker compared to a conventional battery. The downside to this, however, is the necessity of a proprietary adapter in order to take advantage of SuperVOOC. Otherwise, using SuperVOOC charging doesn’t result in excessive temperatures.

The 10 Pro delivers a talktime of slightly over 33 hours. You can keep browsing on the web for over 13 and half hours or you can watch videos for 20 minutes over the 16 hours milestone.

The fast charging on the OnePlus has now jumped from “flying through space” to “warping”, and we’ve reached the SuperVOOC. Rather than maintain separate names for charging technologies between sister brands. OnePlus’ integration with Oppo Oppo means that OnePlus is positioned as a sub-brand for Oppo, which also uses SuperVOOC charging.

The OnePlus 10 Pro in EU and India (as well as China) ships with an 80W charger while in North America it comes with a 65W instead. OnePlus official reason for this is that the 80W SuperVOOC is not compatible with 110V current but, honestly, it doesn’t matter because both chargers deliver identical charging time.

The 80W SuperVOOC adapter is advertised to refuel the 5,000mAh battery in 32 minutes, though we managed to see about 60% battery with a 20 minutes on the cable. The 80W charging adapter is a valuable addition to the retail package, especially considering not all premium phones do ship with a charging adapter now.

Speakers:

The OnePlus 10 Pro has a decent but pretty ordinary sounding pair of stereo speakers. There’s one behind the grille on top and another one at the bottom of the phone. Do note that they sound pretty well balanced when playing together.

The sound is more mid-forward, which makes it quite suitable for YouTube  videos, podcasts and similar stuff, as the sound is clear with a good amount of warmth. However, the bass and treble response seems to be weak, so the music doesn’t sound all that great.

Compared to its predecessor, 9 Pro, the 10 Pro model sounds a bit muted at lower volumes as the 9 Pro sounds more lively. At higher volumes the 9 Pro sounds sharp, while the 10 Pro sounds more balanced with better bass response. The loudness of both phones is at par, but the 9 Pro sounds a bit louder due to the added treble.

The 10 Pro supports Dolby Atmos which is permanently on for the speakers but can be disabled when you connect headphones.

Performance:

The 10 Pro is powered by Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 1. The chipset uses an octa-core CPU consisting of 1x main Cortex-X2 core clocked at 3.0 GHz, assisted by 3x Cortex-A710 cores running at 2.5 GHz paired with third cluster of 4x Cortex-A510 cores ticking at 1.8 GHz for less stressful tasks to conserve energy. The graphically intensive tasks are handled by the Adreno 730 GPU which is 25% more efficient than its predecessor.

Moving on to the benchmarks, the smartphone on the Geekbench 5 test scored 975 points and 3447 points in the single-core and multi-core departments. As for the more concrete performance results the AnTuTu scorecard shows a score of 886,248 points.

The OnePlus 10 Pro underperformed the 9 Pro in Geekbench 5 test, but saw significant improvements across the board. It was the lowest scoring Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 running device on AnTuTu.

OnePlus confirms that it has made significant efforts to improve the thermal performance of the 10 Pro with what it likes to call “3D Passive Cooling System”. The cooling system consists of a large, custom made vapor chamber, copper foil and copper carbon, all of which pulls heat from both sides of the motherboard. The cooling system has a new cooling film made of graphene, which altogether makes up a surface area of more than 34,110 mm sq.

The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset is both an appetite for power and generates plenty of heat, thus keeping it cool is no easy feat. All of that said, this new cooling system works amazingly well.

Camera & Photo Quality:

Rear Camera

Wide (main): 50 MP Sony IMX 789, f/1.8, 23mm, 1/1.43″, 1.22µm, Muilti-Autofocus: All-Pixel Omni-directional PDAF + LAF + CAF, OIS;

Ultra wide angle: 50 MP Samsung ISOCELL JN1, 1/2.76″, f/2.2, 150˚;

Telephoto: 8 MP, 1.0µm f/2.4, PDAF, 3.3X optical zoom. OIS.

Selfie Camera

32 MP, 26mm (wide), 0.7µm, EIS, fixed focus.

Daylight photo quality:

The 12MP shots from the main camera have a good level of detail. There is noticeable sharpening, which seems slightly aggressive at times, but is usually tolerable. The color rendition has come a long way and is generally pleasing but not exactly accurate. The camera also has a tendency to oversaturate and clip colors.

The Display P3 color gamut adds extra depth to the colors when viewed on a compatible display. White balance is pretty decent although the camera has an overall tendency to lean towards the warmer side.

The dynamic range is average. The camera has good highlight rendition but often darkens shadows artificially to deliver an overly processed, contrasty image. This compresses the usable dynamic range to a narrow band, which is especially limiting if you like to edit your photos.

Another area of concern is focusing. On several instances, we feel the camera is missing focus. The issue is that it usually misses by a few inches, which is impossible to detect on the viewfinder and something you can notice only while looking at the stills. It’s particularly unmistakable when viewed on a larger screen.

The main camera does have an option to capture stills in 48MP, but this is just upscaled from the 12MP photos, and not worth using.

The photos from the telephoto camera are often quite good. There is plenty of detail in the photos and the overall look is less over-sharpened and over-processed compared to the main camera. The contrast is quite pleasing.

However, there is an issue with the color processing of this camera, which sometimes results in washed-out colors with heightened contrast, reminiscent of the bleach bypass effect. We are not sure exactly what causes the camera to produce images that look like this but it seems to crop up quite often.

Quality at higher zoom levels is usable, with 5x and even 10x being quite okay, even if they are achieved digitally.

Lastly, we have the new ultrawide camera. When capturing photos in Standard Photo mode, the camera applies a pincushion correction to straighten the lines. This produces fairly standard results optically, and the images look just like they would on most other ultrawide cameras.

The image quality in this mode is decent. Images are a bit soft and lack sharpness in the micro-detail due to a lack of autofocus. Despite this, the overall level of detail is still sufficient.

Switching to the 150-degree mode lets you access the full field of view of the ultrawide lens. This produces a wider but distorted image as the camera makes no attempt to correct the perspective. This can produce some interesting images depending on the subject.

The camera also has a fisheye mode, which produces a digitally distorted fisheye effect with a circular crop. The photos here are severely distorted to produce the intended look and as such has very limited use. There isn’t much need to shoot in this mode as the results are often unsatisfactory except in very specific cases.

The daylight quality of all three cameras is good, particularly from the main camera. We do however feel sad about the omission of macro functionality. We are also not too happy about the ultrawide camera being downgraded from the previous generation model and don’t think much about the gimmicky new fisheye effect.

Moreover, the Hasselblad “tuning” continues to be a sham; the color science looks nothing like anything we have seen coming out of an actual Hasselblad camera but does look remarkably similar to other OnePlus phones that supposedly aren’t tuned by Hasselblad. This is either the most barefaced lie in the industry or the easiest paycheck Hasselblad has ever earned.

Low-light photo quality:

The main wide-angle camera has very good image quality in low-light. Areas with a bit of lighting come out looking great even without turning on the night mode. Actually it’s better to leave the night mode off for these scenarios, as the result is often an overly bright and over processed looking photo.

However, as the sun goes down and it starts to get darker, the Night mode becomes essential. Here, the standard model can no longer keep up but the Night mode produces better exposed photos with a good amount of detail and dynamic range but can still look a bit over processed.

Based on the surrounding light in the scene, the telephoto camera will simply not be used and instead the camera will fall back on using the main camera with digital zoom. However, when it is being used, the telephoto cam can still deliver some surprisingly great results, especially with Night mode enabled.

The ultrawide shooter is where things go off the rail in low light. Without Night mode, the ultrawide cam is simply capable of delivering good results at night unless the scene is well lit. The edges tend to get quite dark and the image turns very soft to cover up the noise. With the Night mode ON, the results are much more usable but still far from ideal.

While the shots clicked during the daylight don’t show much of a difference, in low-light the difference between the new ultrawide camera on the OnePlus 10 Pro becomes obvious compared to the 9 Pro. The IMX766 was a superior quality sensor, and it shows as it outperforms the Samsung JN1 sensor on the 10 Pro.

Overall, the low light performance is good on the main camera but the new ultrawide cam is an unequivocal downgrade.

Portrait:

The portrait mode on the 10 Pro only works on the main camera. It has two modes, one for a single person that applies a digital crop and the other that uses the full width of the lens for a group shot.

The quality of the background blur effect is decent with a relatively high success rate. It handles most subject edges well enough but things like glasses can still trip it from occasionally. The blur can be adjusted using the aperture slider and a lower blur strength can mask issues with edges while also making the subject look less like a cardboard cutout.

The portrait mode on the rear camera is missing the beauty filters that are available on the front camera and includes a simple retouching slider that can be adjusted for strength (and is off by default).

The portrait mode effect works decently with the front camera. As with the back camera, the front camera aften trips with glasses. It also tends to give your beard a bit of a trim as it clips stray hairs. Still, the results are quite acceptable.

There are several beautification modes available on the front camera, including one able to adjust skin texture, cheeks, eye size, nose, chin, head, retouching and a 3D option whose functionality remains unknown. Each of these can be adjusted in any manner until you look like a totally different person or just turn them all off and get a reality check.

Selfies:

The selfie camera is a nice improvement over the previous generation. Details are very good and colors are pretty natural. In low-light the performance seems to take a toll in low-light. But that isn’t something an OTA update can’t patch.

Portrait mode worked very well too and has good subject separation. HDR is impressive when it comes to exposing my face against a bright background.

Final verdict:

The OnePlus brand seems to be restructuring its strategy as a way of figuring out how to cope with its unification with Oppo’s resources. The latest release of the OxygenOS has been a disappointment. It feels like OnePlus just grabbed a bunch of elements from ColorOS and dumped them into the latest version, and still somehow pretended that it was still OxygenOS.

It’s a good thing that OnePlus took feedback from the community, but user’s won’t be seeing the undoing of the unification of the OxygenOS with ColorOS until Android 13 makes its way to the scene later this year.

Disappointments aside, the handling of the thermal is quite impressive and the raw performance of the OnePlus 10 Pro. There are enough features to keep the gamers satisfied.

If you are willing to part with $899 for a OnePlus 1 Pro, you might consider adding a bit more to your budget and get a more refined and consistent experience somewhere else. However, we still think that the OnePlus 10 Pro is worth considering and a strong contender, but it’s a subjective matter.

Pros

  • Refreshing design with a premium finish.

  • Beautiful 120Hz LTPO 2 AMOLED display with granular HRR control and amazing color accuracy.

  • Battery life is quite impressive.

  • 80W SuperVOOC charging speed is amazing.

  • Excellent  sustained performance and thermals.

  • The performance from the main camera is reliable.

Cons

  • No official IP rating outside of the US.

  • OxygenOS 12 is now lacking that OnePlus fan-favorite look and feel.

  • Ultrawide camera isn’t at par with last year’s model and is missing the autofocus or macro.

  • Most games are locked at 60Hz refresh rate.

  • The 80W charger shipped with the global variant isn’t much faster than the 65W charger in the US, which also supports USB-PD for fast charging of your other devices.

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