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Oppo Reno 8 5G Review: Familiar Wine in a New Bottle?

Oppo has expanded the Reno series with the introduction of the Reno 8 5G and the Reno 8 Pro 5G (Review). These two smartphones are being marketed as “The Portrait Expert” by Oppo. We’ve already reviewed the Reno 8 Pro 5G which impressed us with its design and build quality, but it didn’t offer as much value as the competition when it came to performance. Will the Oppo Reno 8 5G deliver a similar experience or does it have an edge over the competition? Let’s find out.

Oppo Reno 8 5G price in India

The Oppo Reno 8 5G is priced at Rs. 29,999 for the lone variant with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. Oppo does offer the phone in two finishes, Shimmer Gold and Shimmer Black. The pricing puts it up against the OnePlus Nord 2T 5G and the Mi 11X 5G.

oppo reno 8 5g ports gadgets360 Oppo Reno 8 5G Review

The Oppo Reno 8 5G has all the ports at the bottom

Oppo Reno 8 5G design

The Oppo Reno 8 5G has a stylish design and the Shimmer Gold variant I have grabbed attention quite easily. In line with the current design trends, Oppo has flattened the sides of the Reno 8 5G. This makes it easy to hold and comfortable to use single-handedly. The corners are curved and they don’t dig into your palms while using the phone. The frame is made out of plastic and doesn’t feel very premium to the touch.

You get a big 6.4-inch display in the front of the Oppo Reno 8 5G, with a cutout in the top-left corner for the selfie camera. It has fairly thin bezels which help offer an immersive experience, except for the chin at the bottom. Oppo has used Corning Gorilla Glass 5 over the display for protection.

At 179g, the Reno 8 5G isn’t heavy and does not cause fatigue when used for extended periods. The power and the volume buttons are positioned towards the middle of the frame on either side, making them easy to reach. These buttons have a reassuring click which helps avoid second-guessing an input. The top of the frame only has the secondary mic. The SIM tray is at the bottom along with the USB Type-C port, speaker and the primary microphone.

oppo reno 8 5g back panel gadgets360 Oppo Reno 8 5G Review

The Shimmer Gold variant can hide fingerprints quite well

The Oppo Reno 8 5G has a triple camera setup at the back and the module is moulded into the back panel. The camera lens cutouts are huge which easily draw attention to the camera module. The design does remind me of the OnePlus Nord 2T (Review).

Oppo Reno 8 5G specifications

The Oppo Reno 8 5G sports an AMOLED display with a full-HD+ resolution, 90Hz refresh rate, and 180Hz touch-sampling rate. While the OnePlus Nord 2T also has a 90Hz refresh rate, other competing devices such as the Motorola Edge 30 (Review) offer a higher 144Hz refresh rate.

The Oppo Reno 8 5G is powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 1300 SoC, an octa-core SoC clocked at 3GHz. There is a RAM expansion feature that allows you to extend the RAM up to 5GB. The fixed storage space could be a cause of concern for a few people since it is non-expandable. smartphone. Oppo could have offered a variant with higher storage.

You get two nano-SIM slots and the tray has a rubber ring around it to offer some ingress protection from dust and water. However, the Reno 8 5G isn’t officially IP certified. It has support for Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.3, NFC, dual-5G standby, and dual-4G VoLTE. It also has six satellite navigation systems. The Reno 8 5G has a 4,500mAh battery with support for 80W fast charging. Oppo also bundles a compatible charger in the box which is a big plus.

oppo reno 8 5g side buttons gadgets360 Oppo Reno 8 5G Review

The plastic frame on the Oppo Reno 8 5G doesn’t feel premium to the touch

The Oppo Reno 8 5G runs ColorOS 12.1 on top of Android 12. It was running the July 2022 Android security patch at the time of writing this review. The phone has a fair amount of bloatware preinstalled such as Byju’s, Dailyhunt, FinShell Pay, HeyFun, Josh, Moj, Netflix, Paytm, Snapchat, and a few more. Most of these apps can be uninstalled. Oppo offers multiple customisation options through the Theme Store app. You also get the option to change accent colours to match the colour of your wallpaper.

Oppo has added Air Gestures which allow the user to interact with the smartphone using hand gestures without touching the screen. I found this feature to be gimmicky and it didn’t work as expected. You still get traditional gestures such as the three-finger swipe for a screenshot, double-tap to wake the screen up, and flip to mute incoming calls among others.

Oppo Reno 8 5G performance

The Oppo Reno 8 5G offered a smooth experience and showed no signs of lag or stutter during my use. The 8GB RAM onboard coupled with the 5GB of storage allocated as RAM allowed for seamless multitasking. I did not have to wait for long for apps to load either. The in-display fingerprint as well as face recognition were consistently quick at authentication.

The AMOLED display was crisp and had good viewing angles. The Reno 8 5G only has a single bottom-firing speaker, but dual speakers would have improved the video watching experience. Thankfully, the single speaker is loud enough. Scrolling through the menus felt smooth on the 90Hz display. The panel is set to 90Hz by default but you do have the option to switch to 60Hz. There is no option for dynamic refresh rate. I used the phone at 90Hz throughout the duration of this review.

oppo reno 8 5g camera module gadgets360 Oppo Reno 8 5G Review

The primary camera on the Reno 8 5G uses a 50-megapixel Sony IMX766 sensor

 

In Geekbench 5, the Reno 8 5G managed to score 603 in single-core and 2,522 in multi-core tests. In AnTuTu, the Reno 8 5G managed to score 592,361 points. In graphics benchmark GFX Bench, the phone managed to score 60fps in the T-Rex and 41fps in Car Chase test suites. These scores are very similar to the OnePlus 2T 5G. The Motorola Edge 30 was also close in terms of performance with its Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ SoC.

Gaming performance was good and the Reno 8 5G could run Call of Duty: Mobile at ‘High’ graphics and ‘High’ frame rate settings. The game ran at these settings without any hint of lag or stutter during gameplay. I played the game for 20 minutes and noticed a four percent drop in battery level. The phone was barely warm to the touch after gaming.

Battery life was very good and I could easily go up to two days with my usage, which usually consisted of surfing Instagram, browsing Reddit, replying to WhatsApp messages and watching YouTube videos. In our HD video loop test, the phone managed to run for 22 hours and 48 minutes which was impressive. The bundled 80W charger helped keep charging times low. It managed to charge the phone to 84 percent in 30 minutes and was completely charged in under 40 minutes.

Oppo Reno 8 5G cameras

The Oppo Reno 8 5G sports a triple camera setup. It has a 50-megapixel primary camera with a Sony IMX766 sensor. This camera sensor is widely used in smartphones such as the Nothing Phone 1 (Review), Realme GT Neo 3, OnePlus 10T and even the Oppo Reno 8 Pro 5G (Review). This primary camera does not have OIS and relies on EIS instead. The other cameras are an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle camera with a 120-degree field of view, and a 2-megapixel macro camera. For selfies, the Oppo Reno 8 5G sports a 32-megapixel selfie camera. I found the camera app to be easy to use.

Photos from the primary camera were quite detailed and had accurate colours. Even in bright conditions, the Reno 8 5G managed to capture colours accurately. The ultra-wide-angle camera had a slight drop in quality compared to the primary shooter. However, it did not have any barrel distortion and I couldn’t find a big difference in colour tones. The camera app has an AI scene optimisation toggle which bumps up colour saturation to make photos more vibrant.

(Top to bottom): Primary and ultra-wide angle camera samples (Tap to see full-size image)

Closeup shots were good and the phone didn’t take much time to lock focus. Portraits too had good edge detection and a natural blur for the background. Macro photos were good, but I constantly had to move the phone around to ensure the shot had proper focus.

(Top to bottom): Close-up and macro camera samples (tap to see full-size image)

 

 

Low-light camera performance was decent and the phone did manage to capture good shots in well-lit environments. Darker areas of the frame had a water-colour like effect. With Night mode enabled, the phone took long-exposure shots which did result in blurry photos if the subject moved a bit.

Low-light and Night mode camera samples (tap to see full-size image)

 

Selfies from the 32-megapixel camera were excellent in daylight as well as low light. Even selfie portraits were quite detailed. In low light, the phone automatically enabled the screen flash which helped capture a brighter image.

(Top to bottom): Daylight group selfie and low-light portrait selfie (tap to see resized image)

 

Video recording topped out at 4K 30fps for the primary camera and 1080p for the selfie shooter. The phone relies on EIS to stabilise footage and does a decent job while shooting at 1080p resolution. However, jitter was visible in the output while shooting at 4K in daylight and was more prominent in low light.

Verdict

The Oppo Reno 8 5G is a well designed smartphone with capable hardware priced under Rs. 30,000. It offers good performance that’s on par with others in the segment and has decent cameras for the price. ColorOS has good features but the amount of preinstalled bloatware could get annoying to someone who prefers a clean Android experience. The lack of OIS also does adversely affect camera performance, especially when shooting photos in low light.

Given the amount of smartphones that have launched in this price range in the past year, the Reno 8 5G has its work cut out. The OnePlus Nord 2T 5G (Review) is the closest alternative and it is nearly identical to the Reno 8 5G in terms of hardware. The Motorola Edge 30 (Review) is priced similarly and focuses on a slim design while offering a 144Hz refresh rate display and clean near-stock Android. The Mi 11X 5G (Review) is also worth considering for anyone purely looking for good performance at this price.


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