Stylish modern design, sufficient power and smooth operation, an interesting set of cameras, and support for fast charging. This is OPPO Reno5 Lite.
My acquaintance with OPPO smartphones began a year ago with the Reno3 Pro. Although before that my colleague Dmitry Koval had already reviewed OPPO Reno2 Z and Find X2.
Even then, while testing Reno3 Pro, I was sure that OPPO mobile devices have a chance to win the hearts of its users. Then there was Reno4, which surprised us with its design, interesting cameras, and support for super-fast charging thanks to SuperVOOC 3.0 technology.
Most recently, OPPO presented its new product, Reno5 Lite, which, by the way, has already appeared on the shelves. Even during the presentation, I was struck by the design of the smartphone, especially the colors of the cases. It all looked quite fantastic. The Flowing Light Design concept creates such a depth of shade that at first glance it can be mistaken for a single color. Therefore, I was looking forward to the arrival of the new item from OPPO. But first, let’s get acquainted with the technical characteristics of the smartphone.
OPPO Reno5 Lite full specifications
|NETWORK||Technology||GSM / HSPA / LTE|
|LAUNCH||Announced||2021, March 23|
|Status||Available. Released 2021, March 23|
|BODY||Dimensions||160.1 x 73.2 x 7.8 mm (6.30 x 2.88 x 0.31 in)|
|Weight||172 g (6.07 oz)|
|SIM||Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)|
|DISPLAY||Type||AMOLED, 430 nits (typ), 800 nits (peak)|
|Size||6.43 inches, 99.8 cm2 (~85.2% screen-to-body ratio)|
|Resolution||1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~409 ppi density)|
|PLATFORM||OS||Android 11, ColorOS 11.1|
|Chipset||Mediatek MT6779V Helio P95 (12 nm)|
|CPU||Octa-core (2×2.2 GHz Cortex-A75 & 6×2.0 GHz Cortex-A55)|
|Internal||128GB 8GB RAM|
|MAIN CAMERA||Quad||48 MP, f/1.7, 26mm (wide), 1/2.0″, 0.8µm, PDAF
8 MP, f/2.2, 16mm, 119˚ (ultrawide), 1/4.0″, 1.12µm
2 MP, f/2.4, (macro)
2 MP, f/2.4, (depth)
|Features||LED flash, HDR, panorama|
|Video||4K@30fps, 1080p@30/120fps, gyro-EIS|
|SELFIE CAMERA||Single||32 MP, f/2.4, 24mm (wide)|
|COMMS||WLAN||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot|
|Bluetooth||5.1, A2DP, LE, aptX HD|
|GPS||Yes, with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, BDS, QZSS|
|USB||USB Type-C 2.0, USB On-The-Go|
|FEATURES||Sensors||Fingerprint (under display, optical), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass|
|BATTERY||Type||Li-Po 4310 mAh, non-removable|
|Charging||Fast charging 30W|
What’s in the box, price and first impression
OPPO Reno5 Lite came to me in a standard-sized black box with a branded turquoise dust jacket, which has changed its shade to a slightly lighter one.
Inside is the smartphone itself, as well as a power supply unit with a cable, a silicone case, wired headphones with a microphone and papers with a warranty and instructions. Sufficient set for a modern mid-range smartphone.
The smartphone amazes with its design and color literally from the first second. Plus, the OPPO Reno5 Lite came to me in an amazing purple color. Color, color, color… It is simply impossible to convey in words.
Of course, I’ve seen smartphones with a gradient, but not like this. The slim and light design of the device enhances the effect. The smartphone is unusually pleasant in the hand, and it seems smaller in comparison with modern smartphones. OPPO has managed to create a modern mobile device that meets all standards.
Slim and elegant design
I will not hide the fact that I like this smartphone, especially the color scheme of its rear panel. Although, at first glance, we get a device similar to all the others, but everything here seems thinner, lighter, more graceful. The body is made of a material that plays lightly with colors, thus creating an interesting visual effect.
The case still collects fingerprints, but they can be easily removed, and you can also put on the bundled case. In addition, the case was particularly susceptible to scratches, although it is only plastic. The slightly curved polished aluminum frame also looks very solid.
Let me remind you that the OPPO Reno5 Lite is fully consistent with the design concept called Flowing Light. My device, as I said, had a fantastic purple color, and when held at certain angles, you can see a subtle aurora-like green that seeps through the purple and accentuates the premium look of the device.
You can also get the device in black. Both colors shimmer in the light, giving it a modern look. Each of the two has its own charm.
The smartphone is quite lightweight and compact. Despite the large display, it doesn’t feel bulky in the hand. The smartphone weighs 172 g and is only 7.8 mm thick. The body of the smartphone is thin and light.
On the rear panel, at the top left, there is a rectangle with four cameras and the word AI, while on the right side there is an LED strip. Yes, the camera island protrudes somewhat above the body, but not very much, so any case, even the one in the box, almost neutralizes this issue. Below is the OPPO logo and that’s it.
At the front is a 6.43-inch screen, which, thanks to the thin bezels around it, takes up almost the entire panel. I will talk about the display itself in more detail later. In the left corner in a special hole placed the front camera of the smartphone. This decision is no longer surprising to most of us. Some people like it, some don’t. Different strokes for different folks.
The placement of buttons, ports and connectors is practically the same as in the Reno4 Lite. The power button on the right side is placed at a comfortable height and is quite sensitive to pressure.
On the left side there are two volume control buttons. They are separate, very neat and work as expected. Above them, the developers placed a tray for two SIM cards and a memory card. Yes, OPPO did not save money and allow not only using two SIM cards, but also expanding the device’s storage.
There is only one microphone on the top edge. For many manufacturers, this has already become commonplace.
At the bottom, you will find a 3.5mm mini-jack for wired headphones, a USB Type-C port that can be used to charge your smartphone or connect it to a PC or laptop, a microphone and speaker are located next to it. Have you noticed that there is no fingerprint scanner too? It fits comfortably under the screen.
I was pleasantly surprised by the build quality and the materials. Yes, they are not premium, like in modern flagships, but the plastic and glass on the front are very resistant. Nothing bends, nothing creaks. All that is missing is protection, but this is a mid-range device.
Display: Super AMOLED again and again only 60Hz
OPPO decided that the display that was in the OPPO Reno4 Lite is sufficient for the updated device. Perhaps they are right. I tested the predecessor, and I really liked the performance and display settings.
So far, the screen is one of the strongest points of the new OPPO model. The manufacturer settled on a wonderful 6.43″ Full HD Plus Super AMOLED display, a resolution of 1080×2400 pixels, an aspect ratio of 20:9 and a standard brightness of 430 nits (maximum brightness is 800 nits). The display’s color gamut is reported to cover 96% of the NTSC range. Keep in mind, however, that most of the content on smartphones is sRGB, which has 100% to 72% NTSC coverage. Unfortunately, there is no sRGB emulation mode, so the colors are oversaturated when playing back content saved with the sRGB profile. Some people may like this, but in terms of color accuracy, this is incorrect. The color temperature, depending on the hue, ranges from 7647-8115 K. If necessary, the color temperature can be corrected using the appropriate setting.
With the default setting, the Delta E color difference towards gray reaches 18.9, which is already quite a lot. With primary colors (RGBCMY), the difference does not exceed 9.3, which is considered a normal result for mobile screens. The average gamma value is 2.43.
The OPPO Reno5 Lite flat screen is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 3, which some users may like. It should be noted that a protective film has already been glued at the factory.
As a result, we have saturated colors, viewing angles are very wide, black is almost perfect, thanks to AMOLED. We can also turn on the blue light filter in the settings and set the color temperature that suits us, as well as activate the dark mode for the menu. The matrix is characterized by wide angles and high brightness, which makes the displayed materials look great in any conditions. By the way, I would also like to compliment the ambient light sensor, which adjusts the brightness of the screen very well to the environment.
But there is still a pretty big flaw in the new device. I’m talking about a 60Hz screen refresh rate. Yes, you read that right, exactly 60 Hz. Again, the manufacturer did not want to raise the frequency to at least 90 Hz, which competitors have had for a long time. Therefore, some users may complain about the standard refresh rate. But if we have a well-optimized and efficient system and an AMOLED screen, then this drawback becomes unimportant. Moreover, we are dealing with a very high quality display. Also, don’t forget that we are talking about a mid-range smartphone. During everyday tasks, you will not have problems due to the smooth operation of the entire system, but with even simple mobile games, the low refresh rate is noticeable. Mobile gamers will definitely not be satisfied with the display’s performance.
OPPO Reno5 Lite: biometry
When it comes to biometrics, OPPO offers several ways to unlock the screen. The most interesting of these is, of course, the fingerprint scanner, which is again integrated with the screen. Why again? We saw the same solution in the Reno4 Lite.
And this is great, because such a scanner is more often found in high-end smartphones, and not in the mid-price segment. How does the scanner work? It should be noted that it is even better than in the previous version.
There is also a face unlock function, and it works even in complete darkness. In fact, I tried to use both methods at the same time, which added to the comfort of use.
OPPO Reno5 Lite sound
Smartphones in this price range have one problem in common – sound. Usually, when the specs contain information on mono speakers, we can only expect average sound.
What about the OPPO Reno5 Lite? The smartphone supports codecs for high quality data transfer, namely LDAC and aptx HD. There is no stereo sound like the A-series smartphones, although the mono speaker sounds loud enough, I would not use it as a standalone device for listening to audio content. But the most important thing is that the sound that comes from it, even at maximum volume, does not have any distortion. You won’t be able to party with this smartphone, but it’s perfect for listening to YouTube or podcasts.
Thankfully, the OPPO Reno5 Lite comes with a classic wired headphone jack. The sound is much better that way, even if you use the included headphones. The sound is even across the entire range, perhaps a little lacking in high frequencies. The sound sometimes seems kind of “boring”, I wanted more details. Of course, there is an equalizer that can be used to improve the listening experience a bit.
In combination with external equipment, for example, OPPO Enco W11 wireless headphones when connected via Bluetooth, everything is fine. The connection is stable, nothing breaks it, and the sound is also at the right level.
Cameras and quality of photo and video
When comparing the camera set to last year’s Reno4 Lite, it seems that nothing has changed. Again, we have a set of four cameras, which are located in a rectangle on the back. As before, we have the main 48-megapixel Samsung GM1ST lens, 1/2″, f/1.7, 0.8 μm, 6P, which complements the 8-megapixel wide-angle Hynix Hi846, 1/4″, 1.12 μm, f/2.2, 5P, 2MP monochrome lens, GalaxyCore GC02M1B, 1/5″, 1.75um, f/2.4, 3P and 2MP f/2.4 macro camera, FOV 89°, 3P.
Yes, now one of the mono lenses has been replaced with a macro camera, and it paid off. The front camera is now one 16 MP, IMX 471, 1/3 “, 1.0 μm, f / 2.4, 5P, that is, the 2 MP depth sensor has disappeared. The best feature of the phone is the video recording capability. It can record 4K video and 1080P at 30fps. In addition, 1080P also has slow motion recording function. The smartphone also supports various modes including AI color portrait video, dual view video and dynamic bokeh.
The main 48MP camera on the OPPO Reno5 Lite performs well in most scenarios. The sensor captures a large amount of detail with virtually no noise or distortion. Colors are generally well represented, but can sometimes come out oversaturated. If you just want to post photos on social networks, then the Reno5 Lite will do its job perfectly and your photos will be bright, clear, detailed and display the full gamut of colors. Photos also have a wide dynamic range and detailed shadows.
Without AI enabled, colors are natural and not overly enhanced. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the photos taken after dark. Even in automatic mode, we managed to get an acceptable result. In the case of completely dark scenes, the night mode helps a lot. Keep in mind, however, that you will achieve the best results when photographing static subjects.
When using the wide-angle camera, we get pretty good photos too. Although you may notice a slight decrease in quality, and this is especially true for the details of the captured frame and slightly altered colors. In good lighting conditions, the image comes out with decent contrast, nice detail and adequate dynamic range.
Even after dark this lens can be used, but then you have to be prepared that some details, especially around the edges, will not be quite clear. However, I would like to point out that the overall impression (as for this type of lens) is absolutely positive. In any case, I have not seen a smartphone in which the wide-angle module would meet the quality of the main matrix.
The image quality from the macromodule is rather mediocre. Although sometimes it is possible to grab some pretty decent macro shots. Stock up on patience, and everything will work out.
The selfie camera is not affected in any way by the disappearance of the depth sensor. On the front panel, in the hole on the top left, there is now only a 32-megapixel lens with f/2.4 aperture. Images taken with a selfie camera will definitely please you.
First of all, they are characterized by good detail and color reproduction. Portrait mode, of course, is also there, and allows you to get a nice blurred background effect.
A few words about night mode. Yes, it is separately highlighted here, but in complete darkness sometimes it does not illuminate objects with high quality. It’s still a long way from the Huawei Mate 40 Pro or the Google Pixel 5, but it’s not useless. Shooting at night can be quite enjoyable, but it will most likely depend on your photographic talent and your ability to capture the moment.
The biggest advantage of the phone is its video recording capability. It can record videos in 4K and Full HD at 30fps. In addition, in Full HD mode, it is also possible to take advantage of the slow motion recording function.
You can record video with blurry or black and white backgrounds. But the most interesting is the dual video mode with which you can record from the front-facing and rear cameras at the same time. This feature has recently appeared in some flagship smartphones, in particular, in the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, which Dmitry Koval talked about in his review, but here we are dealing with a device from a different price range.
The quality of the footage is really very good. You can easily share it on social networks without feeling embarrassed.
In general, OPPO has done a very good job not only with the quality of the built-in cameras, but also with the software. Perhaps ColorOS 11 was the reason for this change?
I’m sure some users were surprised to notice that the OPPO Reno5 Lite has the same processor. Yes, OPPO is often criticized for prioritizing ideas and design over the efficiency and performance of its mobile devices. As in its predecessor, Reno4 Lite, the new product has an old set of 8-core MediaTek Helio P95 processor, based on 12nm process technology, and IMG PowerVR GM9446 graphics. Why not use MediaTek Dimensity? The smartphone does not support 5G, so these SoCs would be inappropriate here.
Of course, it is worth noting that the Helio P95 processor has HyperEngine at its disposal, which is responsible for intelligent resource management. In theory, this should lead to better performance of particularly difficult tasks. The graphics chip has also received an injection to improve efficiency.
The set may not look great in synthetic tests, but it’s hard to find fault with anything in everyday life. I want to note that the system is supported by 8 GB of LPDDR4X RAM and up to 128 GB of storage, which can be expanded with a microSD card. The system is very stable, it is difficult to unsettle the OPPO Reno5 Lite. In any case, during the test, the hardware showed very smooth switching between screens, and the opening times for apps were minimal. I also haven’t experienced any issues with touch responsiveness.
In practice, it all looks very good too. The smartphone is efficient enough. For a mid-ranger, it’s really good. The credit for this belongs to both the ColorOS 11 shell and the effectiveness of the components. There is no need to wait for anything here, I did not notice any delays in the work when performing everyday tasks. A large amount of RAM does the trick. Thanks to this, many apps can be stored in memory for a long time.
As for the gameplay, there are no problems here either. Most modern mobile games work at near maximum settings. Yes, it is possible that some of them heat up the smartphone somewhat, but not too much. Moreover, you can use the game mode, when all the resources of the smartphone will be directed specifically to a game.
In terms of connectivity, we get a standard set consisting of Bluetooth 5.1, dual-band Wi-FI v802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and NFC for contactless payments. I must point out the lack of support for the next generation of 5G.
Android 11 with ColorOS 11
Out of the box, the device runs on the latest version of Android 11 with its own ColorOS 11 shell. This is surprising, given that it’s not a flagship.
Those who have ever held OPPO smartphones in their hands will probably remember that the latest version of their own shell was ColorOS 7.2, and here they immediately jumped to ColorOS 11. This is most likely due to the desire to match the name of Android 11.
I don’t want to talk a lot about the new shell from OPPO. On our website, I wrote about this in great detail in the ColorOS 11 review. For those interested, you can read it in detail here. Just note that the new shell is one of the most attractive and thought-out among competitors on Android 11. The company managed to make a modern design and delight fans with a variety of settings. And they didn’t forget about privacy and security, as well as high-quality battery performance. See for yourself.
In the modern world of smartphones with powerful batteries, the capacity of 4310 mAh, perhaps, will not surprise anyone. However, remember that we are dealing with a very lightweight smartphone. In addition, the OPPO Reno5 Lite supports fast charging thanks to VOOC Flash Charge 4.0 technology.
In the box we have a 30W adapter, so it took me 58 minutes to fully charge the smartphone from 0% to 100%.
|Battery charge||Charging time, min|
|10% █ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░||7|
|20% █ █ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░||16|
|30% █ █ █ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░||23|
|40% █ █ █ █ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░||29|
|50% █ █ █ █ █ ░ ░ ░ ░ ░||34|
|60% █ █ █ █ █ █ ░ ░ ░ ░||39|
|70% █ █ █ █ █ █ █ ░ ░ ░||45|
|80% █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █ ░ ░||50|
|90% █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █ ░||54|
|100% █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █ █||58|
As for the battery life, I can assure you that you will not need to charge your smartphone every day. It worked for me for almost 1.5 days, even with fairly intensive use. Although, perhaps, with lots of gaming, you will have to recharge the phone every 6-7 hours.
Is the OPPO Reno5 Lite worth it?
This is the question I’ve been asking myself lately when I’m testing mid-range smartphones. The middle class of mobile devices has changed a lot, and the competition is fierce. Take Redmi and Realme smartphones, for example. But OPPO decided to change almost nothing compared to last year’s Reno4 Lite and had the right to do so. There are not many improvements, but they are sufficient, aimed at eliminating the shortcomings of the predecessor. Yes, someone will blame the Chinese manufacturer for the fact that again there is no increased refresh rate of the display, but it is already of very high quality and works smoothly without it. Someone will miss the new MediaTek Dimensity or something from Qualcomm Snapdragon, but Helio P95 does an excellent job. Why change what works well? Also, Snapdragon is in short supply right now.
The OPPO Reno5 Lite is a very good phone. The new product from OPPO has a great screen and an extremely lightweight and comfortable body. This smartphone just fits perfectly in the hand, so I rate the overall user experience very highly. You definitely won’t complain about the quality of the photos, as well as the smoothness of actions thanks to the ColorOS 11. The fast charging is also really cool.
The OPPO Reno5 Lite is a modern smartphone that can become your faithful assistant in everyday tasks. It will serve faithfully for more than a year. I am sure you will fall in love with it from the first second.
- lightweight and comfortable body
- the interesting color scheme of the rear panel
- general comfort of use
- high-quality AMOLED display
- fingerprint scanner under the screen
- photo and video above average in its class in good lighting
- high-quality selfies
- enough power to play mobile games
- decent autonomy thanks to the 4015 mAh battery
- proprietary shell ColorOS 11 based on Android 11
- acceptable price
- lack of water and dust protection
- plastic case
- outdated MediaTek Helio P95
- again 60Hz, no high refresh rate (90/120Hz)
If you want a modern, lightweight, and powerful enough smartphone, then take a closer look at OPPO Reno5 Lite. He will be able to pleasantly surprise you.