Oppo Find X5 Pro, the best smartphone for the night

Thanks to the MariSilicon X NPU, the Chinese flagship delivers excellent video in the harshest conditions.

A bet won thanks to a striking novelty, despite the price. The challenge Oppo set itself with the launch of the Find X5 Pro was difficult, but after testing the smartphone, it is hard to find flaws in the Chinese company’s flagship. Which took a gamble with a cost reserved so far only for Samsung’s top-of-the-range and the iPhone, but proved that the cards to stay at the top end of the market are there. The challenge also lay in delivering on the promise of giving nighttime videos like no other. After shooting and recording clips among the beaches and discos of Ibiza (below is the photo gallery), there is no doubt that Oppo has hit the mark.

The secret to the success depends mainly on MariSilicon X, the 6-nanometer neural processing unit that Oppo first designed for the photo-video compartment to raise the quality bar, particularly with regard to nighttime clips. Three technical aspects facilitate the tasks: 5-axis stabilization of the main camera (also a first), fast and accurate focusing, and currently unparalleled AI computing power, enabling excellent video even when recording in 4K at 30/60 fps. And with the focus on color reproduction, movies present a level of sharpness similar to photos taken at night and in low-light conditions.

The NPU is then embedded in a high-end compartment, with Sony’s signature dual rear camera offering two 50MP sensors, 1/1.56” size, and 2um pixel binning for both wide-angle (f/1.7 aperture) and ultra-wide-angle (f/2.2 aperture). The two lenses combined with the 4K Ultra Night Video mode enable excellent recordings even in complicated situations to bring out details, such as nightclubs. In this regard, it should be mentioned that Oppo has closed a three-year deal with Hasselblad (replacing OnePlus, a company that has come under Oppo’s own control), with the Find X5 Pro representing the first taste of a collaboration that promises improvements in color rendition with future models in the Find X series. Less bursty was the 13MP telephoto (f/2.4) with 2x zoom, while the 32MP front-facing camera with Sony IMX709 sensor does its job well for single and group selfies.

In a market dominated by glass, the choice of ceramic is a signal by which Oppo wants to distinguish itself, but more than a quirk, the body on the back is a symbol of a design aimed at combining elegance and scratch resistance. The trade-off of relying on premium materials is felt on the scale, as the Find X5 Pro weighs 218 grams, not a few if justified by the aesthetic result, and also on the price since the manufacturing process involves higher costs than the glass used for the Find X5.

The 6.7” AMOLED display with 3216 x 1440 pixel resolution and 120 Hz refresh rate despite its size can be handled with one hand, while on the performance side, there is the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, with 12GB of Ram and 256GB of Ufs 3.1 Storage. Very good is the 5000 mAh battery split into two cells, which despite heavy use, provides enough battery life to get you through the evening without a problem. And in case you run out of power, however, there is no need to be alarmed because, with 80W fast charging, it only takes 10 minutes to get 30 percent and 36 minutes for a full charge.

With the ColorOS operating system, Oppo has improved the graphics part, but the essential advantage is the four years of guaranteed updates, a sign of attention that during our tests, we also found with the various updates that fixed some initial bugs. Audio is good with the two speakers making themselves heard both on speakerphone and when playing games and watching movies.

In the end, then, skepticism remains about the selling price, 1,299.90 euros, but not because the Find X5 Pro is not worth them, but instead because lowering the threshold to 999 euros would have won over even those curious people disinclined to rapid market developments, who take refuge in more popular alternatives at that price. In all this, however, Oppo’s strategy should also be considered, which, albeit with different formulas, includes the offer of the Kevlar cover, the AirVOOC 50W wireless charger, and the Watch Free smart band (in France), adding in some cases even the Enco earbuds (in Italy), while in other countries (Spain, the United Kingdom, and Germany) there are no other products besides the smartphone.

Alessio Caprodossi is a technology, sports, and lifestyle journalist. He navigates between three areas of expertise, telling stories, experiences, and innovations to understand how the world is shifting. You can follow him on Twitter (@alecap23) and Instagram (Alessio Caprodossi) to report projects and initiatives on startups, sustainability, digital nomads, and web3.