OnePlus 12 Review: Is it Worth Upgrade?

The OnePlus 12 has been globally launched with upgrades like Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 gen 3 for excellent performance, a new 4th Gen Hasselblad camera setup, a 5400mAh battery, and a QHD+ display. But is it a worthy flagship contender against the Galaxy S24 or iPhone 15 Pro?

What’s in the box?

OnePlus 12 unboxing

The OnePlus 12 comes with a Supervooc 100W charger, a braided red USB cable, a user manual, a warranty card, OnePlus stickers, and a membership card for the Red Cable Club. There’s also a welcome letter from Pete celebrating 10 years of OnePlus.

Design and Build

OnePlus 12 design and build quality

The OnePlus 12 introduces a controversial change with its alert slider now positioned on the left edge. This shift is attributed to a redesigned antenna that enhances connectivity, particularly beneficial for horizontal gaming or video streaming. During intense sessions of Call of Duty or Genshin Impact, connectivity remained stable without issues.

Curved screens are a popular trend, yet the OnePlus 12 surprises with slightly curved edges. While this adds a touch of sleekness, I noticed sensitivity challenges when using the phone in a relaxed position, such as in bed late at night. The screen occasionally registered unintended touches from fingers or palm contact. A flat-screen design, akin to the Galaxy S24 series, would have been preferable. Nonetheless, the slim profile ensures the OnePlus 12 remains ergonomic and easy to handle.

Moving to its back, the OnePlus 12 offers a glass finish available in black, white, or green, with a textured pattern. The design exudes sophistication and includes a tactile surface that aids grip, complemented by a prominent camera bump serving as a convenient finger rest during one-handed use.

Additionally, the OnePlus 12 boasts IP65 water and dust resistance, offering protection against moisture exposure. While it can withstand significant humidity, it’s not fully waterproof, so caution is advised to avoid submerging it in water.

Constructed with an aluminum frame (sans titanium), the OnePlus 12 manages fingerprint resistance reasonably well. Its display is shielded by Gorilla Glass Victus, providing robust protection against scratches. Although susceptible to minor scuffs, the included screen protector enhances durability, promising longevity.

Software and OxygenOS 14

OnePlus 12 design and build quality - 550 × 350px.html

As for the software and features, when you unlock the OnePlus 12 using that ever-reliable indisplay fingerprint sensor, we have the latest OxygenOS 14, which gives Android a delightfully oneplus you. We heard back in 2023 that they will be committed to 4 years of OS updates and 5 years of security patches on their flagship phones.

OxygenOS is still one of my favorite Android launchers. It’s smooth and stable in version 14 and boasts all the usual customization options and bonus features, so for instance, there’s some mental health stuff packed onto the OnePlus 12. For instance, Zen Space is still like a do not disturb deep cut, which grants you limited access to just a handful of apps that you specify; it’s fully customizable.

Display and Audio

OnePlus 12 Display and audio quality

The OnePlus 12’s display is a 6.7-inch OLED panel with Quad HD Plus resolution, like most other premium flagships. There’s no HDR support shown on Netflix for me just yet, but it is apparently Dolby Vision and HDR10 certified. and same as last year, a good bit of LTPo tech, which scales from 1 Herz all the way up to 120 HZ, and this screen is bright enough to comfortably use even under the midday sun.

The stereo speakers are unsurprisingly solid for a good bit of video streaming, but as usual, I wouldn’t blast music through them, and there isn’t a headphone jack here on the OnePlus 12, but the Bluetooth streaming is absolutely flawless.

Performance and Gaming Test

OnePlus 12 Gaming Performance Test Genshin Impact

Like most other recent flagships, the OnePlus 12 boasts a Snapdragon 8 gen 3 to keep everything running as smoothly as possible. My review model has 16GB of RAM, and action is top-notch, as expected. The impact on the highest detail settings is handled beautifully, especially when you switch on the performance mode in the game and toolbar. I did find that the phone got a little bit wormed up near the top end after around 40 to 50 minutes of non-stop gaming, and I didn’t see any disruption the frame rate perfectly fluid.

OnePlus 12 Gaming tools

The OnePlus 12 boasts a great set of gaming tools as well, which you can drag out at any point during your game. It’s absolutely stuffed with great tools, some of which are courtesy of OnePlus. On the Snapdragon adreno GPU, you got the usual performance mods to switch between lower power mode, balanced mode, and then the pro gamer mode, which is definitely recommended for the likes of Genshin Impact and tweak the screen refresh rate and the touch response, all the standard stuff like blocking calls and notifications and checking the quality of your online connection, which is obviously very handy for the games Call of Duty and anything where you need to stay online.

You can fiddle with touch sensitivity and touch optimization as well, so if your pores and products aren’t quite responsive enough, you can fiddle with that. You’ve also got the hyper-response engine, which can adjust the refresh rate in real time. You got the hyper HDR feature to boost that dynamic range. You can also dive into GPU settings and tweak various graphical efforts there.

We also got an adaptive frame booster, which can’t be turned on at the same time as that hyper-response engine. You got hyper-resolution if you want to make those visuals even more crispy, as you can see just lots of stuff. and a championship mode, which basically turns on pretty much every option going on, obviously not forgetting the slightly creepy voice changer.

Battery life

OnePlus has managed to squeeze a 5,400mAh battery into the OnePlus 12 that’s even more capacious than the one in the Galaxy S24 Ultra flagship. The battery life is absolutely positive; it just refuses to drop. I used it for 24 hours when traveling into the state, and I still had power in the battery when I eventually got on my bed. Even with heavy camera use and lots of audio streaming in the background, you will happily manage 6 to 7 hours of screen time on time with every charge.

In fact, speaking of Samsung’s Ultra phones, the OnePlus 12 is more than a match for them, so definitely any power users out there get on it, and when it comes to charging the battery back up again, the OnePlus 12 is a clear winner because we got 100 watt wide charging as well as hazar 50W wireless charging.

You get all the usual battery health settings if you plug it in at night, but honestly, just a cable in it for 20 to 30 minutes in the morning, and chrage it fully.

Cameras Test

The OnePlus 12 has the Optics 50m 4th Gen Hasselblad camera, and the primary shooter is a 48-mm ultra-wide-angle lens. They’ve also got a new 64 megapixel periscope zoom with up to 3x optical zoom at times. When it comes to the picture quality, I really love the natural-looking results captured by the OnePlus 12 in that auto mode with the default settings. You should be more than happy with your photo collection; there’s no aggressive color-boosting, sharpening, or other heavy processing on Shore. What you see in real life is generally what you get in your gallery.

The OnePlus 12 is once again a Dependable Snapper, turning out crispy picks, and at night, there’s no steep drop in visual clarity or accuracy; expect bright shots with next to zero noise unless we’re talking proper pitch black situations, and that’s with a fast shutter action too.

Image: Tech Spurt

And that portrait action, as ever, we got to choose between one, two, or three times Zoom for your portraits. Of course, you have full control over the action. Now if you zoom in using the telephoto lens, the results are superb. Zoom actually maxes out at 120x, which kind of feels like OnePlus beating Samsung; it’s 20 times better, and in truth, photo quality remains surprisingly decent. There’s no 5x or 10x zoom lens; it’s certainly clever stuff, and it’s even rather effective in the evenings.

As for the ultra-wide shooter, this is one of the better efforts I’ve tested on any smartphone recently, mostly stepping in line with that primary shooter, though in low light it can fall down a bit.

Image: tech Spurt

When it comes to shooting home movies, no worries. You can capture footage at 8K resolution at 24 frames per second. I tend to use the OnePlus 12 at 4K level because I don’t have an 8K TV, and the video and audio quality are respectably good, more than good enough for capturing those precious family moments. Even at night, you’ll get fairly bright, sharp visuals rather than a murky, noisy mess.

Digital stabilization is a little bit aggressive at that 4K level, so panon isn’t as smooth as I would like; it is a wee bit slow to start at times as you walk, but zoom in is relatively smooth, thankfully with transitions that aren’t too terrible as you flip from one sensor to the next, and though the change to the ultra wide-angle shooter is quite obvious at times, especially when the lighting is softer.

The OnePlus 12 has a 32-megapixel selfie shooter slapped on the front end, and this turned out to be some good-looking picks, too. Perfectly captured portraits work well.

Verdict

So this is my full OnePlus 12 review after using it as my full-time smartphone for just over a week, and you know I absolutely love the older OnePlus 11 and the OnePlus 12 is a gentle evolution in quite a few areas; it doesn’t do anything particularly special apart from perhaps the battery life, which is right up there with the very Top best Android smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra.

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