The OnePlus Nord lineup has been a huge hit in India, and for good reason – after all, the handsets retail at wallet-friendly prices and despite that, retain most , if not all of the company’s core features that normally make OnePlus phones an external stand. And, sure enough, a recent Counterpoint report proves the same, with the Chinese tech giant benefiting from a sales boost led by the Nord range (59% to be exact). YoY) in 2021. Well, it looks like the company wants to strike when the iron is hot as the brand recently announced the newest contender in the Nord line to be dubbed the OnePlus Nord 2T. Starting at Rs 28,999, the Nord 2T has to compete with several devices in the mid-range and budget flagship segment. Let’s try to find out if the device succeeds in knocking out its competitors.
Basically, the OnePlus Nord 2T offers the same specs and experience as the Nord 2 from last year. For a mid-range smartphone, the Nord 2T doesn’t lack any parts and OnePlus loyalists along with new buyers won’t be disappointed with this device.
Design and display
OnePlus Nord 2T physical appearance mimics iQOO Z6 Pro (review) In more ways than one. For starters, like the Z6 Pro, the Nord 2T also comes with a large camera array that houses three sensors. In fact, except for the location of the LED flash module, it is difficult to distinguish one phone from another, at least from the back. Thankfully, OnePlus has rolled out the device in unique colors, including the stunning Gray Shadow that was sent to me for review. The paint job looks elegant and it reminds me of the company’s sandstone finishing appliances. The highlight on the cake is that the back of the phone is covered with Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5, and it even offers a matte finish that helps limit smudges.
The 8.2mm frame is relatively thin, although I feel that OnePlus could have trimmed it a few millimeters, given that the Nord 2T also doesn’t come with a headphone jack. However, the smartphone feels solid in the hand and despite that, weighs only 190 grams. And, you’ll be thrilled to know that the company has also kept the iconic OnePlus alert slider with the device. So you can switch your smartphone’s sound profile in a flash. As for the rest of the I/O, the handset is equipped with a USB Type-C port and a speaker grille located at the bottom. Thankfully, the phone offers stereo output, with the headset doubling as a secondary speaker unit.
In terms of display, the Nord 2T even draws many similarities to its predecessor, the Nord 2. In a word, the device is equipped with a 6.43-inch Super AMOLED panel, FHD+, can refresh at 90Hz. The panel’s brightness levels start at a healthy 800nits but the smartphone struggles to dynamically alter the display’s brightness by accounting for the ambient light appropriately. In addition, the Nord 2T’s panel looks stunning and exhibits strong colors, deep blacks, and wide viewing angles. You can even forward HD media on set as the smartphone is WideVine L1 certified. That means the device cannot forward HDR media from OTT services like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Furthermore, while the panel’s 90Hz refresh rate feels snappy enough, I feel that the 120Hz display will level the playing field for OnePlus’ competition. All said and done, the OnePlus Nord 2T’s display, while usable, is nothing worth writing home about.
The OnePlus Nord 2T ships with the same camera setup as on the OnePlus Nord 2. In terms of specs, the device features a triple-camera setup that includes a 50MP Sony IMX766 main shooter with OIS support, an 8MP ultra-wide sensor. and 2MP monochrome lens. For selfies, the smartphone has a 32MP sensor at the front. Looking at how both phones have similar hardware, you’d be wise to assume that the images taken by the Nord 2T are also quite similar to those taken by its predecessor, the Nord 2. Now, that’s not a bad thing as the Nord 2 is one of the better camera-focused phones from last year.
So the Nord 2 also captures slightly better images than the Nord 2T in low-light situations, which can be seen clearly if you look at the slider attached above, where, the power output Smartphones are also sharper and brighter. Now, note that corner sharpness is the same in both images and the devices have made elements positioned towards the periphery of the frame a bit softer. That said, the handsets removed a fair amount of detail from the shadows, which is nice.
Furthermore, the Nord 2T’s daytime photography skills are more than pleasing, and images captured in the sun offer loads of detail, excellent dynamic range, and tasteful despite the slightly saturated colors. White balance, for the most part, seems to work well as well as handle exposure even when the sensor is pointed directly towards sunlight. You can also take 50MP full-resolution photos with a single tap and add an extra layer of detail in scenes.
Moving on, like the Nord 2, the 2T’s main sensor also offers slow shutter speeds. Correspondingly, the handset has a slight blur when taking photos of fast-moving objects. On the bright side, the presence of OIS helps stabilize the photos to a good extent. I should also add that the phone’s large sensor paves the way for high-quality close-ups with natural bokeh. That said, I recommend turning off Scene AI recognition because it amplifies the color palette on any given landscape, thus losing the natural tones of the image.
For the 8MP ultra-wide angle, the sensor inverts the sharpness just enough along the center of the frame. And, while I was happy with the camera’s 120-degree FoV, the device failed to reduce the fringing around the edges of the frame. That’s not all, as the UW sensor tends to click images with warmer tones and easily detects the color temperature difference between the main sensor and the ultra-wide sensor. Still, portrait mode images look pretty good with the output delivering a convincing blur effect. In the end, I found that using a monochrome sensor made no sense compared to something more practical like a macro or a telephoto shooter.
In terms of video, the phone is capable of 4K 60fps video recording and super slow motion at 960fps. On the front is a regular 32MP selfie camera with slightly off-tone skin tones and a slightly brighter face.
Performance and software
Nord 2T is the first device to come with the MediaTek Dimensity 1300 SoC. Now, the chipset is considered the successor of the Dimensity 1200 platform, however, the SoC has operated in the same fashion as the one that powers the Nord 2 during my time using the device. In fact, Density 1200 yields slightly better results than Density 1300 in certain benchmarking applications like Antutu. Making matters worse, the Dimensity 1300 SoC faces a fair share of throttling issues that, in our testing, dropped peak performance to 64 percent when the phone suffered. Continuous download for 30 minutes. Our CPU Throttle test results were further bolstered in 3DMark’s Wild Life Extreme Stress run, where the Dimensity 1300 SoC scored a steady 65.2%. Maybe so, this phone is also very good at handling everyday tasks. In fact, the performance of the smartphone, although not improved, is still not too bad.
To wit, the device rarely has trouble combining multiple social media apps alongside other resource-hungry extensions like Chrome. Applications also open quickly, and the handset displays all the in-app transitions and user interface smoothly. For gaming, the device can run the popular BR title BGMI at Extreme frame rate (60FPS) and Smooth Graphics preset. And, you can even push the device to run the game at HDR graphics settings, as long as you’re happy with running the game at 45FPS. In terms of memory, the smartphone supports up to 12GB of LPDDR4X RAM and up to 256GB of UFS 3.1 memory.
Moving on, the OnePlus Nord 2T ships with a snappy in-display fingerprint sensor that worked without a hitch for the duration of my review. And, while the phone doesn’t have a headphone jack, it introduces a sizable dual speaker setup while maintaining clarity and depth. For connectivity purposes, 5G is available to be used whenever India’s telecom infrastructure is upgraded to support the next generation of communications. OxygenOS 12.1 is the operating interface on Nord 2T based on Android 12.
Personally, the difference between OPPO’s UI and ColorOS is minimal. However, that doesn’t mean the interface doesn’t borrow a page or two from ColorOS either. For example, the Nord 2T’s camera app looks similar to the one on most OPPO phones. On the bright side, the smartphone is packed with minimal bloatware, the OnePlus stand is as useful as ever, and overall, the interface is user-friendly enough. OnePlus is offering three years of security updates and two years of Android upgrades on the Nord 2T.
A standard 4,500mAh cell can be found on the OnePlus Nord 2T and the difference from the Nord 2 is that the battery can be charged at 80W instead of 65W. Overall, faster charging will save about 10 minutes when boosting the phone from 0 to 100 percent. You can read about my comparison between different charging speeds here.
In terms of battery life, I was able to drain the phone after a day of heavy use. This includes watching a few episodes of Strange thingsplay a little BGMI, and browse social networks in general.
The OnePlus Nord 2T reminds me a lot of the OnePlus 3T which, for starters, provided iterative upgrades over the OnePlus 3. You see, the Dimensity 1300 SoC isn’t a huge leap. in terms of performance compared to the Dimensity 1200 chipset. imagination. Moreover, Nord 2T also offers the same screen, camera array and battery pack. In fact, the only notable changes offered can be called the improved charging speed of the handset and its new design.
That’s not to say the Nord 2T is a bad phone. In fact, OnePlus has kept the overall appeal of the Nord series more or less the same as its latest version, while adding some nifty tweaks including support for 80W super-fast charging. Rest assured, while I wouldn’t advise buyers to upgrade their Dimensity 1200 phone to the Nord 2T, the device is a decent option for those with a slightly older handset.
Editor’s Rating: 3.5 / 5
- Sharp display
- Good design
- Capable stereo speakers
- Super fast charging 80W
- The monochrome sensor is not very useful
- CPU may slow down under load