OnePlus Nord 2 review: the secret OnePlus 9 Lite?
With the OnePlus Nord 2, the manufacturer “OnePlus” brings the successor to the first “Nord” device onto the market. TechnikNews tested it in everyday life.
The Nord 2 offers a lot on paper, as did its predecessor. The use of a MediaTek is new Prozessor – so far unique in a OnePlus device. The manufacturer speaks of a "joint development" of the Dimensity 1200 Prozessors, that's why it got the addition "AI".
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Scope of delivery of the OnePlus Nord 2
The OnePlus Nord 2 came to us in a media kit with sleeves, the customer will only get the device. As usual, the box includes a quick charger, a cover and a display film. This is already pre-installed. The manufacturer does not leave anything out of the standard scope of delivery for a smartphone.
Design and workmanship
The design of the device fits noticeably into the OnePlus Nord, but also OnePlus 9 series. On the front there is a "punch hole" in the upper left corner, the predecessor had a larger recess there with two cameras. The three cameras are located in a camera module that does not protrude from the housing, with the smallest “macro sensor” placed next to the flash. This module is somewhat similar to the OnePlus 9 serieswhich my colleague Fabian tested for you. The OnePlus typical "notification slider" should not be missing in the OnePlus Nord 2, in contrast to the CE 5G he doesn't either.
The processing of the device is high quality. The back is made of glass, the frame is made of plastic and not aluminum as is the case with flagships. I can get over that bleakly at this price. For an RRP of 399 euros, the OnePlus Nord 2 is beautifully designed (subjectively) and has a high-quality finish.
The display, which at 6,43 inches (approx. 16 cm) is relatively small for a smartphone in 2021, is convincing. With Full HD+ and AMOLED, the quality is appropriate for a smartphone in this price range, and only the maximum brightness and refresh rate of 90 Hertz could be better. A small "chin" on the underside of the display also looks a bit out of date. In everyday life, I could only not read the display well in strong sunlight, the difference to 120 Hz is minimal. These are small things that differentiate a mid-range device and a flagship. OnePlus advertises to match the MediaTek “AI” Prozessor with an "AI video mode" for YouTube and Co. But I didn't notice any major differences in everyday life.
I was a little skeptical at first Proprocessor choice. MediaTek doesn't really have a good reputation in the industry, but I think it's improved with the last few SoCs. The performance is excellent in everyday life, in Geekbench the values are only slightly below flagships from last year (Note 20 Ultra/ Galaxy S20), but still well below a OnePlus 8 Pro. Depending on the version, the Dimensity 1200 AI has 8 or 12 gigabytes of RAM memory available and, accordingly, 128 or 256 gigabytes of internal UFS 3.1 memory. The performance can be compared with devices like the S20 FE, which costs almost 150 euros more. Much better than the Nord CE is the haptic feedback and the speaker. The vibration motor does a good job, but it's not at flagship level. The stereo speakers sound good, as does the sound during phone calls.
The main camera, which has a resolution of 50 megapixels, comes from the OnePlus 9 / Oppo Find X3 series. This is supported by an 8 megapixel ultra wide angle and 2 megapixel "mono" camera. How does this camera setup perform in everyday life?
As suspected, the main sensor is great for a mid-range device and produces bright, sharp and detailed images. The ultra-wide-angle camera seems to be the same sensor from the OnePlus Nord CE, it delivers rather “mediocre” images. Especially at the edges of the pictures, the photo is blurred and there is also picture noise. The 2 megapixel mono sensor is more of an argument to be able to say “triple camera” in advertising. This money could very well have been put into a better ultra-wide-angle camera.
Video recordings have been greatly improved compared to its predecessor. Better stabilization, better dynamics and nicer colors. through the Processor, functions such as front and main camera recordings are also possible at the same time. Apropos front camera, this takes nice selfies with a good portrait mode. The decision to omit the second camera was the right one.
The battery performance of the OnePlus Nord 2 is fantastic. On average, a "screen on time" of 5 to 6 hours is achieved, and the battery should last for almost two days for many. If the battery does run out, the "WarpCharge 65" quick charge will charge the battery from 33 to 35 in about 0-100 minutes Procent recharged.
OnePlus Nord 2 software
The software “Oxygen OS 11.3” runs on the smartphone, for the first time with “the same substructure as ColorOS from Oppo”. For those who don't know, Oppo and OnePlus belong to the same group and have been officially working with the same hardware teams for a few weeks.
OnePlus asserted that OxygenOS is still identical and that there are no noticeable differences in everyday life. I see it a little differently. differences e.g. B. to the Nord CE are definitely to be remembered. The camera app has been completely redesigned and is now almost identical to Oppo's. The settings have been adjusted a bit, the software definitely feels "different" than OxygenOS. Is that worse? I think no. I like ColorOS from Oppo and if OnePlus like versproIf it can bring longer (2 OS and three years of security) and faster updates, then I'm a fan of it. In China they have already switched completely to ColorOS, but this step will not take place in Europe.
Conclusion on the OnePlus Nord 2
The OnePlus Nord 2 could again become one of the best mid-range smartphones of the year. Very good hardware, good display, very good battery, good cameras. The total package can be seen again for a price of 399 euros for the "normal version", which most customers should / will definitely use again. With the Nord 2, OnePlus can build on the popular Nord well and impress with its good price / performance. The only points of criticism would be a 120 Hz display and a higher brightness, and the camera selection is not entirely successful.