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Gadget of the Week: Oppo targets the high end

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What is that?
A glass back, glossy sheen, curved edges and lightweight body give the new Oppo Reno8 Pro smartphone a
premium feel typically found in high-end phones. The company’s flagship range, the Find X
series, is not yet available in South Africa, but the Reno8 offers many of its features at a lower price.
This is Oppo’s first handset sold above R16,000, but it still sells for less than R20,000.
Flagship ranges usually begin.
Besides looking and feeling the food in the hand, does it deliver on the flagship promise?
For one thing, it runs on a computer chip that has been described as the most power-efficient
2022 processor, the MediaTek 5nm Dimensity 8100-MAX SOC, which allows smooth loading
and running apps, and transitioning between apps, without overheating the handset.
It is powered by a 4500mAh battery and comes with an 80W charger using Oppo’s proprietary technology.
SuperVOOC fast charging technology. This enables a 50% charge in 11 minutes – giving almost a full
a day of use thanks to a charge that takes the time to drink a cup of coffee. Yes it was our
benchmark: can we prep the phone for a day’s work out of the office while we grab the latter
caffeine booster? The answer is, yes we can!
Oppo says its Battery Health Engine allows over 1,600 full charge cycles, which works
about four years of optimal battery health. Few high-end smartphones are used for more
more than three years, so it will take time to test this claim, but it gives some confidence to make
this purchase decision.
Storage is generous, but also adaptable, at 256GB, while supporting expandable memory up to 1TB.
RAM comes in at a decent 8GB, but is also expandable via Virtual RAM, borrowed from the
main storage, to offer an additional 5 GB and a total of 13 GB. This allows for more efficient multitasking,
when multiple applications are open, as well as improved performance of any interactive content, such as
Game.
Speaking of which, the 6.7-inch screen has a fast 120Hz refresh rate and 1000Hz Ultra touch response,
which means it is instantly responsive, and even gives an edge in competition with others in
mobile games. An X-axis linear motor delivers realistic haptic vibrations – essentially force
feedback – to make game action more realistic.
The camera array is close to flagship level, with a 50MP main camera using a 23mm wide-angle lens
with a focal length of f/1.8 – numbers that spell prime. It’s complemented by an 8MP ultrawide
16mm lens and 2MP macro lens, which combine to deliver 4K shooting at 30fps
(fps) or 1080p video (high definition) at 30/60/120/240fps, and 720p video at 960fps – ultra slow –
movement.

The 4K feature includes Ultra Night Video, which promises faster image processing and better
detail and color accuracy in low light.
The front of the handset hosts a 32MP selfie camera with 2X zoom, offering more options – and
challenges – for content creators.

Most lenses are supplied by Sony, but Oppo also uses its own imaging neural processing unit
(NPU), the MariSilicon X, which works with Sony lenses and is dedicated to managing
camera functions and processes. It mainly works by applying artificial intelligence processes to video
Capture. Although the lenses of the Reno8 Pro are not much different from those of its predecessor, the
Reno7 Pro, NPU elevates them to higher capabilities in low-light video as well as portrait
photography.
How much does it cost?
The OPPO Reno8 Pro 5G is available in two colors, Ice Green and Ice Black, retailing from
R19,999.
Why is it important?
The lines between midrange phones and flagship devices are blurring, and now there’s a
continuum of features, rather than a hard cut of premium features between different price points-
points. The handsets that navigate this continuum most successfully tend to be those that sit
between mid-range and high-end smartphones. The Reno8 Pro isn’t just a great
more at this level, but gladly passes for a flagship phone.
What are the biggest negatives?
 Lenses haven’t progressed much from previous Reno7 phones
series.
 Limited color options.
What are the biggest positives?
 50% charge in 11 minutes.
 120Hz refresh rate and 1000Hz ultra touch response.
 Incredibly thin, at 7.3mm, without compromising side buttons.
 A premium phone at a lower price than premium.

  • Arthur Goldstuck is the founder of World Wide Worx and editor of Gadget.co.za. Follow him on
    Twitter on @art2gee

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