OnePlus 10 Pro in the cell phone test – one feature doesn’t live up to its promise

The Chinese smartphone manufacturer presented its new top model, the OnePlus 10 Pro. It has been available in stores since April 5, 2022. The hardware has been improved, but the price has remained the same. Does the OnePlus 10 Pro have the potential to be a bestseller? That is what atechbook’s test shows.

The OnePlus 10 Pro once again focuses on the cooperation with the Swedish camera professional Hasselblad. The camera on the back also catches the eye visually. Coupled with a new design and updated hardware, the new smartphone promises a lot. But can it keep its promises? This is the question that atechbook investigated in the review of the OnePlus 10 Pro.

New design with matte surface

What is immediately noticeable about the OnePlus 10 Pro is the good build quality and the new surface of the back. The manufacturer has ground the glass to a matte finish, which makes the surface feel very velvety. Fingerprints or streaks are hardly noticeable – a real advantage. The smartphone is available in both Forest Green (review here) and Volcanic Black.

Back of the OnePlus 10 Pro
The back of the OnePlus 10 Pro is made of matte glass. However, the camera module is very eye-catching. Photo: atechbook

The frame is made of highly polished metal and gives the device the necessary stability. The difference between the shiny metal and the matte glass is very nice to look at and gives the smartphone a high-quality look. The camera’s design is particularly eye-catching in the OnePlus 10 Pro. Whether you like it is a matter of taste. However, it takes up a lot of space on the back when judged neutrally, since it measures 5 x 4 centimeters. The module is made of dark glass and contains the three camera sensors as well as the round dual flash, which almost looks like a sensor with its shape – a nice detail.

Nevertheless, we wonder why OnePlus has enlarged the camera module so much compared to the predecessor. After all, the camera itself has hardly changed (details below). Another small drawback: The OnePlus 10 Pro does not have the official certification for water and dust protection in Europe. In contrast, the 9 Pro supports IP68. However, the manufacturer emphasizes that the new model has also gone through the same phases of the test procedure; in the US, the T-Mobile models even come with IP68. Curious why he did not make the certification official for all models right away?

Partial score: 5 out of 5 stars

Display now even better

Mit 6,7 Zoll ist das OnePlus 10 Pro ebenso groß wie das 9 Pro aus dem Vorjahr. Auch an der Resolution von 3216 x 1440 Pixeln und der Pixeldichte von 525 ppi hat sich nicht geändert. Die Darstellung bleibt also gewohnt scharf und kontrastreich. Wer so viele Pixel nicht benötigt, der kann die Resolution in den Einstellungen auf FullHD+ herunterregeln und so Battery sparen. Neu ist zudem die Möglichkeit der automatischen Anpassung der Resolution . Je nach Inhalt wechselt sie dann zwischen QHD+ und FullHD+. Die maximale Helligkeit beträgt 1300 Nits, was im direkten Vergleich ähnlich bepreister Smartphones recht gut ist.

Display of the OnePlus 10 Pro
Narrow edges and a large display. Nothing has changed in the new OnePlus 10 Pro. Photo: atechbook

OnePlus relies on a 2nd generation LTPO panel in the 10 Pro, where the refresh rate can be variably adjusted between 1 Hz and 120 Hz. The always-on display, for example, benefits from the low refresh rate, which allows it to work particularly energy-efficiently. In normal use, the refresh rate change works very smoothly and is thus not noticed. Again, if you do not need the peak of 120 Hz, you can set the rate to 60 Hz in the settings and save energy.

Ebenfalls neu ist die zweistufige Farbkalibrierung, die beim OnePlus 10 Pro erstmals zum Einsatz kommt. Statt Colors nur auf eine Helligkeit von 500 Nits zu kalibrieren, wurde das auch für die Helligkeitsstufe von 100 Nits getan. So werden die Colors des AMOLED-Displays noch etwas knackiger und auch bei niedriger Leuchtkraft bis zu 50 Prozent natürlicher dargestellt. Der Weißabgleich funktioniert ebenfalls hervorragend und verstärkt dadurch die Kontraste zusätzlich. Insgesamt sorgen diese Anpassungen für eine exzellente Ablesbarkeit und Darstellung des Displays.

Partial score: 5 out of 5 stars

Android 12 and security

The OnePlus 10 Pro is already shipped with Android 12 and thus the latest operating system version from Google. The modifications of the OxygenOS 12.1 interface are limited, so users can work with a pretty clean system overall. However, users will find dozens of options to customize the look in the settings. This ranges from the shape and color of the font and app icons to background images and color settings. Even the dark mode can now be adjusted individually via three levels.

Even during our test, the smartphone received various updates that bring new features and optimizations for the camera, the system and the general performance, among other things. Pleasing: The security patch has the status of March 2022, so it is also very up-to-date.

Those who have used a OnePlus smartphone before will notice that the fingerprint sensor is now placed much further up on the display. This has the advantage that the thumb does not have to be bent down as far when unlocking, which is much more convenient. The sensor itself responds quickly and reliably. The aforementioned update, which has improved this area once again, certainly helps here.

Partial score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 provides performance

Herzstück des OnePlus 10 Pro ist sein Processor, in diesem Fall der Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 von Qualcomm, begleitet von der Grafik Adreno 730 GPU. Nutzer können zudem zwischen verschiedenen Memoryversionen wählen: 8 GB RAM und 128 GB Memory oder 12 GB RAM und 256 GB Memory. Schön wäre auch eine Version mit mehr Memorykapazität gewesen, denn auf eine microSD-Karte muss man beim OnePlus 10 Pro verzichten. Der Memory ist nicht erweiterbar.

Doch zurück zum Processor. Im Alltag wird sich der Leistungssprung zwischen dem Snapdragon 888 (im OnePlus 9 Pro) und dem Nachfolger Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 kaum bemerkbar machen. Um die volle Leistung auszureizen, bedarf es schon einiges an Mühe, oder ein sehr anspruchsvolles Mobile Game. Wer sein Smartphone hingegen überwiegend zum Surfen und normalen Gaming nutzt, ab und zu Fotos aufnimmt oder auch ein kleines Video schneidet, der wird sich zwar über die flotte Leistung freuen. Apps öffnen blitzschnell, das Scrollen durch Webseiten ist flüssig und auch mit Multitasking kommt das Smartphone super zurecht.

Overall, however, the handbrake is applied because OnePlus has throttled the chip’s performance out of the box. Users who want the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1’s full performance – which is not necessary in everyday use as mentioned – should go to the “Advanced Settings” via “Battery” in the settings and activate the “High Performance Mode” there. But beware: If this is enabled, the smartphone will warm up quite quickly and also consume considerably more energy.

Features at a glance

OnePlus 10 Pro
Display 6.7-inch, AMOLED with LTPO,
1-120 Hz, 1300 nits,
3D Gorilla Glass
Resolution QHD+ (3216 x 1440 pixels), 525 ppi, HDR10+, 10bit color depth.
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1,
Octa-Core with 1x 3.0 GHz + 3x 2.5 + 4x 1.8 GHz
RAM 8 / 12 GB GB
Memory 128 / 256 GB, not expandable
Main camera Triple camera
48 MP Sony IMX789 wide-angle, f/1.8, EIS+OIS
50 MP Isocell JN1 ultra-wide-angle, f/2.2, up to 150 degrees.
8 MP telephoto, f/2.4, 3.3x hybrid zoom, 30x digital zoom, OIS

8K video with 24 FPS, 4K video with 120 FPS.

Camera modes Pro, panorama, movie, slow motion, time lapse, long exposure, dual video view, 150°, tilt shift, XPAN
Front camera 32 MP, EIS
Battery 5000 mAh,
80 watt SuperVOOC
50 Watt AirVOOC
Reverse wireless charging with 10 watts
Software Android 12, OxygenOS 12.1
Security Fingerprint sensor under the display,
Face unlock, PIN, password
Connections Bluetooth 5.2, infrared, NFC
Internet WLAN a/b/g/n/ac/ax, LTE, 5G
Other Dual speaker, dual SIM
Dimensions and weight 163.0 × 73.9 × 8.55 mm,
200.5 grams
Colors Volcanic Black, Emerald Green
MSRP 8/12 GB: 899 Euros
12/256 GB: 999 Euros

Partial score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Hasselblad camera in the test

OnePlus 9 Pro next to OnePlus 10 Pro
The OnePlus 9 Pro next to the OnePlus 10 Pro in green. Here, the camera has become significantly larger. Photo: atechbook

The name “Hasselblad” is proudly emblazoned on the camera module. But how much Hasselblad is actually in the OnePlus 10 Pro? The two partners do not provide any information about that. The only thing mentioned is the optimization of the camera software – presumably the core of the cooperation. Connoisseurs will recognize Hasselblad’s typical red shutter button as well as the noise during shutter release. Some Hasselblad-typical adjustments also come into play in the automatic image processing.

However, the cooperation between the two companies is not new; it already existed in the OnePlus 9 Pro and now also in the manufacturer Oppo. Apart from the changed camera design, there are only a few differences between the cameras of the OnePlus 9 Pro and 10 Pro at first glance. The manufacturer now relies on a triple cam and does without the monochrome sensor. However, the other cameras come with the same resolution as before:

  • Wide-angle (Sony IMX789) with 48 megapixels, f/1.8 aperture and optical image stabilization
  • Ultra-wide angle (JN1) with 50 megapixels, f/2.2 aperture and 150-degree field of view
  • Telephoto camera with 8 megapixels, f/2.4 aperture, OIS and 3.3x optical and up to 30x digital zoom

Wirklich neu ist somit nur der Ultraweitwinkel, dessen Blickwinkel bis zu 150 Grad beträgt, also etwas höher als die üblichen 110 bis 120 Grad. Statt auf den Sony IMX766 setzt OnePlus nun auf den Isocell JN1 von Samsung. Es handelt sich hierbei um einen 50-Megapixel-Sensor mit der bislang kleinsten Pixelstruktur von 0,64 Mikrometer bei einer Sensorgröße von 1/2.76 Zoll. Was technisch klingt, soll am Ende durch die Isocell-2.0-Technologie für eine bessere Isolierung der einzelnen Pixel sorgen. Das Resultat: Eine bessere Ausleuchtung von Szenen und eine kräftigere Farbgebung in Fotos. Zudem verspricht die 10Bit-Farbtiefe einen besonders feinen Farbverlauf und noch naturnähere Colors. Nutzt man 10Bit statt den gewohnten 8Bit, werden die Fotos allerdings als HEIF-Datei abgespeichert, die sich nur über das OnePlus 10 Pro oder mit einem MacBook von Apple öffnen lassen.

Photos not as natural as promised

All die Versprechen einer gesteigerten Fotoqualität kann das Smartphone im Test aber nicht so ganz erfüllen. Bei Tageslicht überzeugen die Details, die Colors und die Gesamtkomposition. Man muss allerdings auch sagen, dass die Colors zum Teil etwas übersteuert sind. Daran sind wir durch zahlreiche Instagram-Videos mit sattem Grün und strahlendem Blau bei Himmel und Meer allerdings schon so sehr gewohnt, dass das kaum noch stört. Der Slogan “Hasselblad Natural Color Solution for Mobile” ist dennoch nicht erfüllt.

Daylight photo OnePlus 10 Pro
Bei Tageslicht zeigen sich viele Details, allerdings auch sehr satte, sogar etwas übersteuerte Colors. Photo: atechbook

However, the loss of details is more noticeable in low or poor light situations. Especially in the dark, the pictures look a bit coarse and washed out, despite the promised optimizations in night mode.

Photo with OnePlus 10 Pro at dusk
The photo taken in twilight shows a slight red cast, caused by the color balance with the sun. The houses in front look slightly washed out. Photo: atechbook

The wider angle on the ultra-wide-angle camera plays to its strengths in certain situations, as it can capture more image content. However, it’s also important to point out that the new sensor and its pixels are smaller overall. Thus, they also capture less light, which partly leads to somewhat dark pictures with less details.

Photo at night with OnePlus 10 Pro
Die Colors bei der Nachtaufnahme wirken zum Teil schon grell. Bei genauem Hinsehen verliert es etwas an Details. Photo: atechbook

Partial score: 4 out of 5 stars

Battery: OnePlus now relies on VOOC

Despite the same display size, OnePlus has increased the battery capacity of the 10 Pro from 4500 mAh to 5000 mAh now. At the same time, the charging technology has been renamed and the charging performance increased. Instead of WarpCharge, it is now called VOOC, so OnePlus adopts Oppo’s technology. And instead of charging with up to 65 watts, the OnePlus 10 Pro now charges with 80 watts via cable. The manufacturer even includes the matching SuperVOOC power supply, which is a special feature in this day and age. It allows fully charging the smartphone in about 35 minutes, which is an excellent rate. However, OnePlus has left wireless charging (AirVOOC) at 50 watts.

As mentioned, the display size and brightness have not changed. In addition, the frame rate is set to a dynamic 120 Hz ex-factory and the performance of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 is throttled. All these points mean that the OnePlus 10 Pro actually lasts longer with its larger battery. We achieved a screen runtime of about 10 hours without gaming and with classic smartphone applications in the test. Overall, we had to recharge the OnePlus 10 Pro after about one and a half days.

Partial score: 5 out of 5 stars

Conclusion

When a smartphone manufacturer focuses so much on the camera, it has to deliver. Unfortunately, the OnePlus 10 Pro only manages that to some extent. On the one hand, it is an excellent smartphone that convinces with its design and performance – and that delivers quite a bit of performance at a reasonable price. Users have numerous options to customize the system according to their wishes and thus individualize the OnePlus 10 Pro. The display is excellent, and the battery lasts longer than the predecessor thanks to its higher capacity.

Und auch die Kamera macht gute Fotos. Gute Fotos reichen allerdings nicht mehr, wenn man ihre Leistung so stark hervorhebt und Versprechen von Natürlichkeit und Detailreichtum gibt, die man am Ende nicht in vollem Umfang halten kann. Das ist schade, denn wären diese Versprechen nicht gewesen, hatte das Conclusion uns nach dem Test auch nicht mit einer leichten Enttäuschung zurück gelassen. Insgesamt ist das OnePlus 10 Pro nämlich als Smartphone durchaus zu empfehlen. Leider tritt der Hersteller bei der Weiterführung seiner Reihe mit dem neuen Modell aber etwas auf der Stelle.

Overall score: 4.5 out of 5 stars / 89%.

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