OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G First Impressions: Renovating its Predecessor
OPPO introduced the Reno series as a means to showcase its latest innovations in the smartphone world. The first Reno device had a periscope camera, an edge-to-edge display, a pop-up camera in the shape of a shark fin, and the latest Snapdragon chipset running the show. With subsequent iterations though, OPPO deviated from its original philosophy for the Reno series and took a route that focused mainly on design and multimedia experience.
With the Reno 5 Pro from early this year, OPPO revamped its strategy once again and put in flagship-grade internals, and priced the device quite competitively just like the original Reno series. The Reno 6 Pro 5G follows the same footsteps and feels almost like a revamped, or for the sake of wordplay, a renovated version of its predecessor. It follows the same core principle of adding a powerful SoC in the form of a MediaTek Dimensity 1200, a curved OLED display, 64MP quad-cameras, and super-fast charging, culminating in an overall premium experience.
About this review: The unit used for review was provided to us by OPPO India and we used the OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G for the better part of two weeks before peening down a brief summary of our experience with the device. OPPO had no input regarding the content of this review.
OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G: Specifications
|Specification||OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G|
|Dimensions & Weight||
|RAM & Storage||
|Battery & Charging||
|Security||In-display fingerprint scanner|
|Front Camera(s)||32MP f/2.4|
|Port(s)||USB 3.1 Type-C|
|Audio||Dolby Atmos support|
Design: Typically OPPO
OPPO generally relies on the offline market to achieve its sales targets and that’s a market where consumers have design and the overall look and feel of the device high on their priority list. Since you can physically go to a store to experience these devices before buying them, factors like the texture of the back panel or the weight and thickness of the phone matter considerably. Hence, OPPO has consistently done well in this department over the years and the Reno 6 Pro 5G is no exception.
The back has a nice sand-blasted texture that adds a decent amount of grip while holding the phone in your hand. More than the texture though, the back is recognizable for its shiny colorway which OPPO is calling Aurora. It’s designed in a way that reflects light at multiple angles based on how it’s falling on the back and then creates multiple different colors out of it.
It’s really hard to describe the way it looks but the takeaway is if you’re getting this color option on the Reno 6 Pro, your phone is going to seem different every time you look at it.
The back is curved, just like the display (which we’ll talk about in a bit) and both the front and back seamlessly merge with the frame, making the device seem thinner than it actually is. Given the overall footprint of the phone, it does feel quite light and the weight distribution has been done well. Holding the Reno 6 Pro in your hand will feel like you’re holding a premium phone and that the brand has paid close attention to the design of this device.
Display: Smooth Curves, but 90Hz Refresh Rate
Like it or not, 3D curved displays surely add a hint of premium-ness to a phone and that’s exactly the case with the OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G. The Full HD+ OLED display with a punch-hole cutout on the top-left curves ever so slightly and spills over to merge with the frame. Due to the curvature, gesture navigation, especially on the sides of the phone, feels as smooth as ever. Even holding the phone while you scroll through your social media feed feels smoother than usual since your hand wraps around the curves easily.
The second reason for the smooth feeling is that the display refreshes at 90Hz. Yes, there are phones with 120Hz displays around the same price range or even lower for that matter, and that’s one reason why we’ll deduct some points here. The quality of the panel itself is top-notch regardless of whether you’re using the phone casually or watching HDR content on OTT platforms. The Reno 6 Pro also has an in-display fingerprint scanner that’s both fast and accurate.
Just like the design and build quality, even the quality of the display on a phone is evident right when you look at it and that’s the reason OPPO hasn’t compromised on the kind of panel they’ve used on the Reno 6 Pro. It’s sufficiently large to enjoy content while still feeling relatively compact and easy to navigate around.
OPPO Reno 6 Pro: Performance
The OPPO Reno 5 Pro came with a MediaTek Dimensity 1000+ which was the best chip MediaTek had to offer at that time. The Reno 6 Pro replaces that with the Dimensity 1200 which is their current flagship SoC. Accompanying it is 12GB of RAM that can…wait for it…be “expanded” to 19GB with the help of virtual RAM. No, this doesn’t mean the Reno 6 Pro has 19GB of actual RAM, it just means multi-tasking may feel slightly smoother on the phone. There’s 256GB of onboard UFS 3.1 storage.
The Dimensity 1200 has been a proven performer and does exceptionally well with day-to-day tasks. Even heavier loads like gaming and video rendering are taken care of with ease by this chipset. For those of you who are not very familiar with chipsets from MediaTek, the Dimensity 1200 slots in between the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 and the 888, both of which are flagship processors. Whether you’re a conqueror in BGMI or just want a phone that can run social media apps without hiccups, the Reno 6 Pro 5G will take care of all your needs. If you’re someone who doesn’t particularly care what processor your phone runs as long as it can run well, this is a phone that is worth considering as an option at least.
Just like all OPPO phones, the Reno 6 Pro runs on ColorOS 11. ColorOS as a custom skin has matured significantly over the years and has a lot of features you may find useful. It’s stable, the UI looks good, and it provides some good utilitarian features. Of course, it’s got its own set of downsides like pre-installed bloatware, spam notifications from stock apps, etc, but overall, the software experience on the Reno 6 Pro is good for the most part.
The Reno 6 Pro retains the same camera setup from the Reno 5 Pro, except for some changes to the external camera module/housing. The primary camera is a 64MP shooter capable of capturing some good shots in broad daylight. The shots look detailed and OPPO is even making use of the higher resolution to allow digital zoom that looks pretty usable up to 5X.
We noticed a slight inconsistency in the exposure levels while capturing shots outdoors and the dynamic range can be improved. The shots get slightly noisy when you try to capture a scene with less light.
The ultra-wide isn’t as sharp as we would expect at this price range. The 8MP shooter takes above-average pictures and is certainly usable, but not reliable. The selfie shooter, on the other hand, does a good job of capturing the right skin tones. The dynamic range here as well can be better since highlights in the background were over-exposed at times.
OPPO is marketing the Bokeh Flair Portrait Mode as one of the highlights of the Reno 6 Pro 5G and it does a good job at making the background appear like what it would when shooting with a natural depth of field.
In terms of videos, the OPPO Reno 6 Pro can shoot up to 4K at 30fps but if you want to shoot 60fps video, you’ll have to tone the resolution down to 1080p. Given the powerful SoC, 4K 60fps should have been present. The front camera is capped at 1080p 30fps. There are features like AI Highlight Video that improve colors and reduce noise levels at night and the Bokeh Flair Portrait Mode we talked about earlier is applicable for videos as well.
Charging: Ultra-fast Charging with SuperVOOC
OPPO’s VOOC charging technology has been around for a while now and has undergone a lot of development to reach its current stage. On the Reno 6 Pro 5G, it accepts an input wattage of up to 65W which can charge the 4500mAh battery in about half an hour. 65W charging isn’t something new and Realme even had it on a sub-₹20k phone, but it’s just a nice thing to have and surely worth mentioning.
The battery life itself is pretty solid on the Reno 6 Pro. You can easily get through a day’s usage with about 20% battery remaining before you go to bed. You don’t need to plug it in overnight, although a quick top-up in the morning will ensure your phone can get through the day.
The vibration motor on the phone is pretty good and the haptic feedback you get especially while typing is right up there with other flagship phones. The phone has dual SIM slots. You can’t expand the storage via a microSD card. One letdown on this device is the fact that it only has a single bottom-firing speaker.
It does get quite loud though and there’s support for Dolby Atmos, but at this price, we expected stereo speakers. There’s no headphone jack either if you’re wondering. The phone is Widevine L1 certified and Carrier Aggregation is supported.
Something also worth keeping in mind is that OPPO does not offer a bootloader unlock option officially. Consequently, the OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G is not a good choice for users who like to root their devices right out of the box, as you will not be able to bootloader unlock your device.
The OPPO Reno 6 Pro has been launched in India for a price of ₹39,990 (~$536) which is more expensive than the ₹35,990 price tag of its predecessor. You get a more powerful SoC, more RAM, and storage while the rest of the package remains largely similar. There are certainly other options in this price category that provide better value, but the Reno 6 Pro doesn’t compete with the likes of Xiaomi, Realme, or iQOO.
OPPO as a brand is more prevalent in offline markets and emphasizes things like design, display, and a premium experience. Considering those factors, the OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G might be a good option for you to consider if it checks the right boxes on your priority list. If you’re looking for the best performance and the most value in your smartphone, you need to assess your other options. While the OPPO Reno 6 Pro 5G does those things well, the combination of features it offers is valued more by average users in the offline market than spec enthusiasts in the online market.