Oppo’s latest flagship, the Find X5 Pro is basically a fusion of the best quality components currently on the market and some bespoke designer items.
For the week I’ve been testing it, I’ve mainly focused on its camera and video capabilities, as that’s a big part of what Oppo says sets the Find X5 Pro apart. I’ve also used it as my main smartphone in general, with mostly positive results.
Here’s what I found overall.
The Find X5 Pro has three rear cameras: a 50-megapixel 1x wide (f/1.7), a 50-megapixel 0.6x ultrawide (f/2.2), and a 13-megapixel 2x optical telephoto (f/2.4) that’s digitally zoomable 20x for photos and 10x for videos.
Its video capability is up to 4K at 30 or 60 frames per second, with support for 1080p and 720p.
The front-facing selfie camera, which is excellent, is a 32-megapixel (f/2.4) lens.
The main camera sensor is slightly smaller than some competing flagship phones; From a physical light-sensing perspective, this means it shouldn’t be able to match the low-light performance of, say, a Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra (18-piece larger sensor) or Xiaomi’s top-of-the-line phones.
But Oppo tries to compensate for this in other ways, mainly related to its engine and the layout of its camera muscles. In that context, the Find X5 Pro has some key claims of photographic superiority.
The first is the type of computer-aided photography it employs through its custom artificial intelligence, in part through what it dubs “MariSilicon X.” This should do two things. First, it’s supposed to evaluate and balance the photo composition based on a variety of factors that its computer brain can identify. Secondly, it is said to improve nighttime video recordings. In general, it works very well in some low-light video conditions. I’ve found that when I directly compare the sharpness and detail of the videos, it’s sometimes blown away other systems – including the iPhone 13 Pro – in low indoor light.
However, it can sometimes use HDR with a pretty heavy hand. These things come down to personal taste: if you want as much of what’s in the shadows of your night photo or video to be exposed as possible, you’ll like this system. For me, it sometimes teetered on the edge of overkill.
Conveniently, this feature can be toggled on or off with a simple tap at the top of the screen, and can be used for both photos and videos (although it does limit video to 30fps).
The other key feature that the Find X5 Pro brings to its camera system is what Oppo calls five-axis optical image stabilization at “SLR levels”. The idea is to make photos less prone to camera shake (and therefore blurry) and videos far smoother than they otherwise would be.
In general, most phone makers don’t feel they need this level of mechanical stabilization, given that the lenses and sensors are already so small and packed so closely together, resulting in relatively low levels of camera shake. Still, I was excited to see it in motion, especially for video. What I found was a system that, while undeniably good, may still have some work to do to topple flagship competitors like the iPhone 13 Pro.
The actual quality of the video output – from the resolution to the color balance – is excellent. But the stabilization was a bit back and forth at times. While some of the shots I took were smooth and silky, other parts were jumpy and edgy; not in some old-fashioned “wobbly” way, but in the way the system jumps to reframe the shot as the camera pans around or walks hand-held.
Zooming in and out of a video capture is also a bit blocky at times, statically jumping through segments of focus area.
It can all be a little jarring when you look back on it. I found it less of a problem, and sometimes no problem at all, using Oppo’s on-screen zoom-in and zoom-out control buttons, rather than the intuitive action of pinching in and out on the screen.
My experience with it tells me it’s more of a software and computational issue than an optical stabilization issue – Oppo may have loaded the very best stabilization tech, but its software doesn’t quite do it justice in the finished output.
Is the Find X5 Pro a less powerful video shooter than, for example, Google’s Pixel 6 Pro (899 euros)? No, it’s generally more powerful. What about Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra (prices same, like €1,299)? Here it is a mixed bag; Some low-light shots are better, but smooth hand-walking videos are best, just eye-level and sometimes more judder.
And the iPhone 13 Pro? With the exception of some low-light shots (where Oppo shines), the Apple phone is still better for video, particularly smooth, stabilized footage.
The only other limitation I really found was the 2x telephoto zoom, which isn’t really enough on a £1,300 flagship camera phone in 2022. Quality is excellent up to about 6x, but drops off quickly after that.
What will be interesting to see here is Oppo’s deepening partnership with Hasselblad, the renowned Swedish medium format camera company associated with famous portrait photographers such as Vanity Fair cover shooter Annie Leibovitz. It’s not really clear how much of an influence Hasselblad actually had on the Find X5 Pro’s camera system, but the two companies have now inked a three-year deal to “focus on breakthroughs in color science”.
For those who don’t base their decision on lenses, another key appeal of the Find X5 Pro is its build quality. It has a very sturdy smooth ceramic shell that is quite expensive to produce. (The only downside is the visible fingerprints on that super glossy finish.)
The other specs are what you would expect from a $1,300 phone. First up is an absolutely superb 6.7-inch, 120Hz (with 240Hz touch-sampling), QHD+, 525ppi display that can hit an insanely bright 1300 nits under certain circumstances.
There’s also a really top-notch engine (Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and 12GB Ram) that can handle any typical task. And there’s a higher standard storage capacity than usual (256GB).
Battery life is generally excellent too, thanks to a 5,000mAh power reserve under the hood.
Arguably the biggest bonus for those who prefer this phone to another flagship is the maximum charging speed of up to 80 watts – that’s about half the charge in 15 minutes. And unlike most of its main competitors, you get a cable and charger in the box.
A special mention also goes to the Find X5 Pro’s speakers, which are really excellent: you can easily watch a Netflix or YouTube video without headphones and get a really decent audio experience.
Finally, there’s an under-screen fingerprint sensor that works pretty well.
You can get the Find X5 Pro in either black or white.
Oppo’s Find X5 Pro is a real flagship for fairly intensive use. It’s incredibly powerful, feels good in the hand, and has a few unique selling points, including its amazing loading speed. Its camera system is great, although not quite on par with the ultra-elite rivals it faces at the same price point (Samsung’s Galaxy S22 Ultra and Apple’s iPhone 13 Pro).
https://www.independent.ie/business/technology/review-oppos-find-x5-pro-challenges-the-best-that-samsung-and-apple-have-to-offer-41486935.html Review: Oppo’s Find X5 Pro challenges the best that Samsung and Apple have to offer