OnePlus Nord 2T 5G review: Flagship essentials, but wanting in prowess




Chinese smartphone maker recently launched in India the Nord 2T . Successor to the Nord 2 5G, the T-edition is more of a seasonal refresh with improved design, enhanced performance, and fast charging capability. Starting with design, the Nord 2T gets new colour themes on the back cover – jade fog and gray shadow. The gray shadow colour variant (review unit) is reminiscent of sandstone back covers of the early models. The sandstone texture is smooth and not grainy and rough as was the case with the original sandstone back covers. It is, however, as efficient in repelling fingerprints and smudges.

Coming to performance, the Nord 2T settles for a modest price-performance ratio. Modest because the MediaTek Dimensity 1300 system-on-chip powering the smartphone is not entirely different, or better, than the MediaTek Dimensity 1200 SoC of the predecessor. Yet, there is a perceptible difference in the performance of the two. The smartphone works well for daily tasks and manages to handle power tasks without breaking sweat. Unlike the predecessor, the smartphone does not heat up. It becomes warm at times, especially when used extensively for graphics-and-power intensive tasks, but not to a point where it becomes uncomfortable to use and operate. ALSO READ: OnePlus Nord 2 5G review

Boost in battery charging speed is another bit of upgrade that the OnePlus Nord 2T 5G gets over the predecessor. The phone ships with 80W SUPERVOOC fast-wired charger, which fully charges its completely drained 4,500 mAh capacity battery in about 40 minutes. It is not an industry-leading fast-charging solution, but one of the best you get in a midrange segment. As for the on-battery time, the smartphone works for about a day on a single charge.

Apart from the above-mentioned upgrades, the OnePlus Nord 2T 5G is identical to the predecessor. It sports a HDR10+ certified 6.43-inch fullHD+ AMOLED screen of 90Hz refresh rate.

The screen is bright, vivid and responsive. Though not feature-rich, it is good for everyday use. Complementing the modest screen is the Dirac-tuned audio delivered by stereo speakers. The speakers are loud and clear, but not balanced.

Imaging is covered by a triple-camera array on the back, featuring a 50-megapixel primary sensor with optical image stabilization, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle sensor, and a 2MP mono lens. On the front, the phone has a 32MP sensor. This is the camera configuration lifted from the predecessor as is, and therefore delivers familiar experience. The primary camera sensor is the star here. It performs well in all lighting conditions. The ultra-wide-angle sensor is good but not the best. There is no colour symmetry in the frames clicked through the primary sensor and ultra-wide-angle sensor. Unlike the primary sensor, the ultra-wide-angle sensor struggles in low-light conditions. Coming to the front camera, it works well for both regular shots and portraits.

The Nord 2T 5G can record up to 4K resolution videos at 30 fps from the primary sensor, 1080p at 30fps from ultra-wide-angle, and 1080p at 30fps from the front camera. The videos recorded from the primary sensor look good but the ultra-wide-sensor disappoints, especially in low light conditions.

Verdict

The Nord 2 5G was a good smartphone in its own right but now it deserves a successor, perhaps one with a bigger screen of higher refresh rate, better imaging system, large capacity battery, and a powerful processor. Unfortunately, the Nord 2T has neither of these. The smartphone brings incremental upgrades with regard to design, performance, and charging speed, but there is a whole lot left unchanged from the predecessor and that makes it more of a seasonal refresh. That said, the Nord 2T (priced Rs 28,999 onwards) may be the best smartphone in the OnePlus midrange line but not in the segment simply because it seems wanting in comparison with other midrange launched this year.

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