Oppo Find X5 Pro review: The new flagship standard

The Oppo Find X5 Pro is a stand-out smartphone in a sea of flagships that all look the same

Oppo Find X5 Pro review
Oppo Find X5 Pro review
Bottom Line

Thanks to its stunning design and being packed with high-end features, the Oppo Find X5 Pro is a stand-out smartphone in a sea of flagships that all look the same. Apple and Samsung should take note, because this is a flagship phone that truly challenges them. It’s just a shame that it’s quite pricey and that it can’t be purchased in the U.S. 

Pros
Stunning design with a ceramic finish
Phenomenal AMOLED display
Incredible camera with excellent low-light photography
Speedy performance
IP68
Great battery life
Fast charging 
Cons
Bloatware
Only 2X optical zoom
Pricey
Not available in the U.S.
4.4

Oppo recently released their Find X5 Pro flagship smartphone and color us impressed. It’s not only loaded up with features and cutting-edge tech, it’s possibly one of the best-looking phones on the market right now. This 5G Android powerhouse is competing with iPhone 13 Pro and Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra. The Oppo Find X5 Pro has so much going for it that it’s hard to even define its stand-out quality. The camera, screen, specs, and battery/charging options are among the best you can find on the market right now. Should you buy the Oppo Find X5 Pro? Read on for our in-depth Oppo Find X5 Pro review.

Design / Form

The design and finish of the Find X5 Pro screams “premium” and flagship. It’s hard to stand out these days when phones are almost entirely screen, but X5 Pro pulls it off. The edge-to-edge screen beautifully melts into the sides of the phone with its Gorilla Glass Victus face. The back is made of mirrored ceramic with round tapered sides and ultra-smooth curves for the camera bump.

The camera bump is like a giant water drop melting into the back of the phone. The camera lenses are all perfectly flush with the bump. There’s no hard edges anywhere on the phone. The device has some heft, but also a premium feel with no plastic to be found. The ceramic back is brilliant and unique — it’s smokey, black, metallic, and reflective all at the same time. If you don’t like Glaze Black it also comes in a very clean ceramic White.

Fingerprints are noticeable in certain light but it’s much better than we’d expect for a glossy back. We didn’t even have to wipe it down while shooting photos of it. The back has a glass-like feel to it, which many found to make it less grippy — I personally found it more grippy than iPhone’s smooth matte back. The smooth curved sides also help with a more comfortable grip.

Oppo does include a protective case with the X5 Pro, which is certainly appreciated. While the case is a little boring with a matte black finish, we love that it’s thin, light, and well fitted. There’s good protection to all sides without much bulk. It’s also easy to take off when you feel like celebrating X5’s design.

Oppo also comes with a very thin screen protector already perfectly applied. It’s hardly noticeable, and it’s much thinner than most after-market screen protectors we’ve seen. Thankfully it looks and feels as good as the glass.

I found Oppo to feel as good as it looks. It IS a large phone, but executed well and fairly palm-able for most hands. That said, my smaller-handed friends found it to be a bit too much for comfortable one-handed use and noted it’s top-heavy. Compared to the iPhone 13 Pro Max it’s actually narrower and taller — yet they have the same screen size. The curves and tapered edges give it a nicer in-hand feel. It weighs 218 grams versus iPhone’s heavier 240 grams. Oppo is also lighter, narrower, and a touch taller than Samsung’s S22 Ultra. As an everyday iPhone 13 Pro (non-max) user, I found Oppo to feel quite natural. It was nice to have the extra screen real-estate while only being a few mm wider.

Display

Oppo Find X5 Pro display

We’re obsessed with the aesthetics of the Find X5 Pro, and the screen is a key factor. With the screen on, this phone seriously shines. The edge-to-edge screen is bright, vibrant, detailed, and all-around beautiful. The 6.7″ display is AMOLED, and it really shows off the rich contrast and inky blacks. The resolution is an impressive QHD+ at 3216×1440 which squeezes 525 pixels into every square inch. This pixel density is greater than iPhone’s 458ppi and the Samsung’s 500ppi. The display supports 10-bit color, which translates to over a billion colors. To top it all off, the refresh rate is 120 Hz for silky smooth UI transitions. The excellence of this screen is very noticeable and Oppo’s ColorOS Android operating system knows how to flaunt it. We haven’t seen a phone screen that looks better than Find X5 Pro, but there are a couple of flagships out there that come close.

The screen actually defaults to a still high FHD+ (2412×1080) resolution and I’m not shocked that I didn’t even realize I wasn’t using the full QHD+ (3216×1440) for weeks. The lower resolution is still 394ppi, which is an excellent pixel density. You can have this setting on auto-select, which adjusts depending on your display content.

There are plenty of options to make the display even better for your eyes. There’s the natural tone display that adjusts the screen temperature based on ambient lighting, there’s eye comfort which can reduce blue light on a schedule, there are light and dark modes, and then there are a few enhancing options specific to this phone. Image Sharpener, video color enhancer, and bright HDR video mode can all be configured in the phone’s display settings or with a quick setting toggle.

We love that there’s an always-on option for the display. It can be configured with a variety of clocks and animations, and can display notification icons, date, and battery. It even outlines the fingerprint sensor. This is all made possible by the OLED display which keeps most of the pixels effectively turned off during this time.

Finally, there’s no notch, just a small hole punch camera on the top left which blends right in with the menu bar.

Features / OS / Usability

Being able to unlock the phone with both Face and Touch is the feature that makes us happiest. The optical touch sensor is embedded under the screen and is effortless to use and setup. Plus, there are multiple animations that you can choose from and we don’t get tired of watching a vortex whirl around our thumb when unlocking. The face unlock is just about as good as it gets — it takes a fraction of a second and works at an angle. It even works with some masks! Finger unlock can actually be used while the screen is “off” (with the always-on screen) which makes it even quicker to unlock your phone.

The Find X5 Pro comes packaged with the latest Android OS 12, and on top of that is Oppo’s ColorOS 12. We dig a lot of the features added in ColorOS, and they really help the screen pop. That said, there’s still some unnecessary bloat that we could do without. Thankfully most bloat is removable and there’s no noticeable effect on the superior performance. There’s so much personalization baked into Android these days that it’s easy to make this phone your own. The gestures really amplify the usability.

The phone is IP68 water and dust resistance, so it can withstand most any weather. With that, the included screen protector, and the included case, the X5 Pro is well equipped to handle everyday life.

Performance

The specs do not disappoint on this flagship phone. It’s powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor, which has 8 cores and reaches speeds of 3GHz. It comes with a whopping 12GB of RAM and if that’s not enough you can bump it up an extra 7GB if you have extra storage. There’s 256GB of storage. Depending on your region you may be able to get 512GB. There’s no expandable storage. 256GB is plenty of storage unless you record a lot of high-resolution video, and then you’ll need to invest in a good cloud storage option.

Notable specs and features

We’ll save the camera specs for the next section, but Oppo is so serious about camera quality the X5 Pro packages a neural processing chip dedicated to imaging. The MariSilicon X is an Oppo designed chip geared towards unprecedented picture quality and speed with the camera. There’s also a dedicated GPU, the Adreno 730 @818MHz. Finally, there’s NFC, Bluetooth 5.2, WiFi 6, Dual-SIMs, eSim, and global 5G service. Unfortunately, 5G did not work on my pre-production review unit with T-Mobile in the US.

There are dual speakers built-in — one on the bottom of the unit near the charger and the other at the top of the screen. The speaker separation makes for a wider soundstage. The speakers get louder than my iPhone, but they do distort at higher volumes. At normal volumes, the speakers sound good, but we wouldn’t describe audio quality as one of the many strengths.

Camera

Oppo wanted to make sure they meant “flagship” when it comes to the Find X5 Pro’s camera setup. They partnered with Hasselblad to develop this camera, and it’s even branded on the back of the phone. There’s also the mentioned MariSilicon NPU dedicated chip built-in to bring powerful AI to the camera.

The Find X5 Pro has 3 rear cameras. The main camera is 50MP f/1.7 and wide-angle with 5-axis stabilization. Then there’s a 50MP ultra-wide-angle camera with a 110-degree field of view, also capable of macro photography up to 4cm. And then there’s the 13MP telephoto lens with a 2X optical zoom. There’s a Sony IMX 766 image sensor behind the 50MP cameras.

The front camera is 32MP f/2.4 with a wide 90-degree field of view. It can actually shift between 80 degrees and 90 degrees for a personal selfie versus a friends/family/background selfie. The field of view is better than iPhone’s and you can get more people and/or background in your selfies.

The first thing I noticed with the camera is how fast it is, in many respects. The 5 axis image stabilization means you can easily snap photos on the move or without such a steady hand and there’s no blur. The Oppo excels in low-light situations — the default camera still takes instantaneous shots without requiring a steady hand for a few seconds. The camera app is simple and smart; it almost always defaults to a usable setting for a fantastic shot. There are also countless configuration settings available if you’ve got the time for it. Even though low-light photos work instantly by default, there’s a low-light mode that does rely on a steady hand and few second hold. This will pick up a lot more light, but may come with some extra blur.

With no configuration, a quick shot produced excellent photography. HDR is set to auto and AI scene selection is off. The only setting I toggled on permanently is 50MP for the extra resolution and detail. 50MP disables the macro shot and also disables the ability to zoom. With 50MP you get two zoom options: 1x and .6x. We were extremely impressed with the color, detail, contrast, and overall clarity of shots. Portraits were also quick and beautiful with accurate skin tones and DSLR-like bokeh.

We went head-to-head with iPhone 13 Pro and found Oppo Find X5 Pro to be an excellent adversary

We went head-to-head with iPhone 13 Pro and found Oppo Find X5 Pro to be an excellent adversary. Both phones have top-tier cameras capable of giving professional cameras a run for their money. At this advanced level, judging photos is highly subjective. We found the cameras to be mostly on-par with each phone excelling in certain categories.

Oppo takes great photos outside at night, without even requiring night mode. Strangely, Oppo had a tougher time with very sunny situations and photos could get washed out. Oppo has the better front facing camera, largely due to the extra megapixels and wider field of view. Portraits were a tough call — a good iPhone portrait came out better with more natural bokeh/separation of the subject. That said, it’s easier to capture a nice portrait with Oppo.

Videos were pretty evenly matched, both excelling in low light. The Oppo camera app has more options and customizations. While Oppo did a nice job making the camera simple and fast there’s no beating iPhone’s simplicity. The only exception is iPhone’s night mode — iPhone takes excellent low-light shots as well, but configuring this is not easy and you’ll often find yourself taking a 3 second photo in dim rooms. We found most iPhone photos came out a little darker than Oppo’s, but still with very rich detail. Oppo’s colors often looked more accurate.

Battery-life and Charging

The large 5000 mAh battery has been treating us well, yielding over a day of regular use and multiple days of minimal use. This is with the always-on display and always-listening google assistant enabled. This phone is spec’d with superior charging options. There’s a built-in USB Type-C 3.1 port capable of fast charging at 80W. It reportedly can charge the phone from 0% to 50% in an impressive 12 minutes.

If you have a wireless charger capable of up to 50W you can charge to 100% in only 47 minutes. My review unit came with an 80W “SUPERVOOC” charger for the UK. With an adapter for the US it charged at 66 watts and only took 16 minutes to charge 50% and 43 minutes to charge 100%. Using a regular 61 watt USB-C laptop charger it took 40 minutes to charge 50% and 80 minutes to charge 100%, this is because it’s not built with the VOOC speed charging.

One feature we loved having is reverse wireless charging — you can use the Oppo to charge any wirelessly charged device at speeds up to 10W. Since fast charging can put more strain on the battery, Oppo guarantees the battery will retain 80% charge up to 1600 charge cycles.

Should you buy the Oppo Find X5 Pro?

A month into using Oppo Find X5 Pro and we’re still obsessed with looking at it. The screen is so visually engaging, especially with the wallpaper constantly cycling. We’re equally obsessed with the back of the phone and the ultra suave curves and shimmering ceramic. The camera has been such a pleasure to use. We love how fast and effortless it was to take professional-grade shots, especially in low light! The only thing it’s missing is better optical zoom. The battery and charging options are also big highlights. The fast charging speeds are insanely fast. And reverse wireless charging has come in handy. Android 12 and ColorOS has been really slick and usable, and we love how much personalization there is. It’s easy to take advantage of all the phone’s features.

Surprisingly, there’s almost nothing bad to say about Find X5 Pro… other than the price and limited availability in the U.S. Oppo Find X5 Pro was released on March 14th for €1299 ($1,448). This price tag is not unreasonable given the specs and the market, but it is certainly expensive and not at all competitive. Thankfully this phone is so well loaded that it can easily last you for years to come. The pricing, availability, and even configuration changes by region — as of now, it’s unlikely that the device will come to the States.

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