OnePlus has a fame for strong service within the mid-range smartphone market, however I used to be disenchanted that some elements had not been upgraded within the lately reviewed OnePlus Nord 2T 5G, which begins at £369. There’s additionally disappointment with the brand new Nord CE 2 Lite 5G — not a lot with the cellphone itself, however as a result of in a crowded market this £279 cellphone is arguably dearer than it must be: provided that the ‘Lite’ model is barely £20 cheaper than the Nord CE 2, which we reviewed again in March, OnePlus may have pushed its most cost-effective handset additional on worth (see specs comparability under). Like its Nord CE predecessors, the Nord CE 2 Lite 5G is not formally on sale within the US.
There are two colour choices, Black Nightfall and my overview handset’s quite arresting Blue Tide, whose light-refracting again morphs between child blue and barely deeper shades. The higher part of the again homes a big digital camera digital camera which stands very proud, inflicting important rock-and-roll on the desk when the uncased cellphone’s display screen is prodded. Vertical stripes operating the total depth of the digital camera bump and full width of the cellphone is not the perfect design thought I’ve ever seen – it appears to be like like somebody put sticky tape on this part of the cellphone.
As with the Nord CE 2, OnePlus omits its trademark Alert Slider, which helps you to change between silent, vibrate and ring modes. Nonetheless, the inner specs impress. The Nord CE 2 Lite is powered by Qualcomm’s quick mid-range Snapdragon 695 5G chipset with 6GB of RAM, a platform that delivered Geekbench 5 CPU scores of 685 (single core) and 1945 (multi core). By the use of comparability, the MediaTek Dimensity 900-based Nord CE 2 with 8GB of RAM scored 719 (single core) and 2143 (multi core).
There’s 128GB of inner storage of which 108GB is free out of the field. The 5G assist is clear within the handset’s title, and customers have the selection of utilizing both two SIMs or one SIM and a MicroSD card.
There is a 3.5mm headphone jack on the underside edge, and a fingerprint sensor constructed into the facility button on the precise aspect.
The display screen is fairly good contemplating this handset’s worth. It is an IPS panel quite than AMOLED (as on the Nord CE 2), however at 6.59 inches and delivering 2,412 by 1,080 pixels (401ppi) it appears to be like clear and sharp. The 120Hz refresh price can also be good to see in a cellphone at this worth.
There are few surprises on the software program entrance, too Android 12 and OxygenOS 12 offering a reasonably clear expertise, with a gratifying lack of bloatware. I may do with out Netflix and TikTok cluttering the place up, however each might be uninstalled. The Nord CE 2 Lite 5G contains the OnePlus ‘shelf’, the place you swipe down from the display screen’s prime proper to entry a variety of widgets. Some customers discover this distracting as they’ll hit it by mistake when accessing the notifications bar, however I discover it straightforward sufficient to work with.
There are three rear cameras, the principle one being a 64MP f1.7 unit that shoots an honest image. The opposite two are quite much less helpful: a 2MP f/2.4 depth-assist digital camera and a 2MP f/2.4 macro lens that must be 4cm from the topic for greatest impact. You may shoot 1080p video at 30fps, and slow-motion 720p video at 120fps. The entrance digital camera is a 16MP f/2.0 unit that shoots acceptable selfies and captures 1080p video at 30fps.
The battery capability is a beneficiant 5000mAh. Though the Nord CE 2 Lite refused to finish the PCMark for Android Work 3.0 battery life check, I discovered it misplaced 15% of a full cost after operating YouTube video repeatedly hours. This implies whole battery lifetime of 20 hours. OnePlus offers a 33W charger, which ought to take the handset from empty to 50% in half an hour. There is no assist for wi-fi or reverse charging, as you’d count on with a handset on this worth bracket.
The OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite 5G is a neat and decently specified handset, nevertheless it’s arguably a bit overpriced contemplating that, for simply £20 extra, the Nord CE 2 provides you an AMOLED display screen (albeit with 90Hz quite 120Hz refresh), barely higher efficiency, comparable battery life, quicker (65W) charging, an ultra-wide angle digital camera, and Wi-Fi 6 quite 5.
OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite specs
|OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite||OnePlus Nord CE 2|
|Dimensions||75.6mm x 164.3mm x 8.5mm||73.2mm x 160.6mm x 7.8mm|
|Show||6.59-inch IPS, 1080 x 2412 (20:9, 401ppi), 120Hz refresh price||6.43-inch AMOLED, 1080 x 2400 (20:9, 409ppi), 90Hz refresh price, HDR10+, Gorilla Glass 5|
|Display screen to physique ratio||84%||85%|
|OS||Android 12 + OxygenOS 12||Android 11 + OxygenOS 11|
|Chipset||Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 5G||MediaTek Dimensity 900|
|MicroSD card reader||sure (through shared SIM slot)||sure (devoted)|
|Battery||5000mAh||4500mAh (2x 2250mAh)|
|Battery charging||33W Tremendous VOOC||65W Tremendous VOOC|
|Rear cameras||64MP f/1.7 broad angle (EIS) • 2MP f/2.4 depth-assist • 2MP f/2.4 macro||64MP f/1.79 broad angle (EIS) • 8MP f/2.2 ultra-wide angle (119°, EIS) • 2MP f/2.4 macro|
|Entrance digital camera||16MP f/2.0||16MP f/2.4 (EIS)|
|Networks||2G GSM, 3G WCDMA, 4G LTE, 5G SA+NSA||2G GSM, 3G WCDMA, 4G LTE, 5G SA+NSA|
|SIM slots||twin Nano-SIM||twin Nano-SIM|
|Wi-Fi||Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac)||Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax)|
|Location||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou, QZSS||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou, QZSS|
|Sensors||side-mounted fingerprint scanner, accelerometer, digital compass, gyroscope, ambient mild, proximity, sensor core||in-display fingerprint scanner, accelerometer, digital compass, gyroscope, ambient mild, proximity, sensor core|
|Ports||USB-C, 3.5mm audio out||USB-C, 3.5mm audio out|
|Buttons||gestures & on-screen navigation, quantity, energy||gestures & on-screen navigation, quantity, energy|
|Audio||1x speaker||1x speaker|
|Within the field||OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite 5G, 33W SuperVOOC energy adapter, USB-C cable (helps USB 2.0), cellphone case, display screen protector (pre-applied), SIM tray ejector, welcome letter, quick-start information, security data and guarantee card||OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G, 65W SuperVOOC energy adapter, USB-C cable (helps USB 2.0), cellphone case, display screen protector (pre-applied), SIM tray ejector, welcome letter, model sticker, Crimson Cable Membership membership card, quick- begin information, security data and guarantee card|
|Worth||from £279||from £299|
Alternate options to think about
As the price of dwelling rises, many smartphone patrons are shifting their focus from costly flagships to mid-range and price range handsets. There’s an growing vary of alternative at cheaper price factors — listed below are three main contenders across the £300/$350 mark.
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