Oppo F5 Review – Do Your Selfies Need to be Ai Powered?

The Oppo F5 is another Selfie Master to their portfolio, let's find out if the ultra thin bezels,18:9 format and Ai powered selfies can make it standout in a sea of mid-range Smartphones.
by Nicole on January 23, 2018
Positives
  • Excellent Selfie camera and average rear camera
  • Great battery life
  • Reliable fast performing UI
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • Dual SIM or SDCard slot
  • Comes with a nice feeling, solid case
Negatives
  • Photos can feel flat but have good colors
  • Autofocus is jumpy
  • No NFC
  • No VOOC fast charging (even though it does charge somewhat quickly)
  • Older MicroUSB connector
  • ColorOS is not very 'Android'

Design

  • The entire front is almost all display, on more than one occasion someone asked if it was the iPhone X (it’s obviously missing the notch, but at a glance, it’s easy to make the mistake).
  • There is not much else around the front of the Oppo, besides display. The bottom chin is absolutely empty. Not even a notification LED, hidden away somewhere. On top, there is a single speaker, light and proximity sensors, as well as the now single selfie shooter.
  • The “antenna lines” on the back are a nice design accent, even though they are not actually needed for the radios to function.
    Since there wasn’t really any space for Oppo’s typical home button/fingerprint reader combo, the F5 relies entirely on on-screen navigation. As for the biometric reader, it is moved to the back of the phone. Center-mounted and slightly elongated.
  • It’s the same size as the Samsung Galaxy S8, but instead of 5.5 inches we have 6”.
  • Very slim, 7.5mm thick and only 152g

Positive

  • Polished high end look in a mid-range smartphone
  • Thin bezels all around, including the top and bottom of the phone.

Negative

  • No metal (but it’s not obvious), the F5 has a silver nano coated plastic which is typically used to provide waterproofing, but the F5 is not waterproof.

Display

  • 6” 2160 x 1080 IPS LCD screen 402ppi
  • 18:9 aspect screen with 2160 x 1080 resolution. Most call this ‘Full HD+’, because it’s effectively standard Full HD with some extra pixels to accommodate the elongated shape.
  • Display quality is typical of a lower-mid range phone: very good but a level below the best. The Oppo F5 uses an LTPS IPS panel, and as such, color depth isn’t at the level of an OLED or high-end LCD.

Positive

  • Oppo has included an option to handle 18:9 aspect ratio on unoptimized apps as well. You can go in the settings and choose which apps get forced into the new aspect. Or rather, which get left alone, since “ON” is the default state.
  • The panel of choice offers excellent contrast and brightness.

Negative

  • Certain tones are a bit washed out, but you get used to it.
  • The whites can have a blue tint, which means a cooler display temperature. There is no way to personalize the display’s color appearance.
  • 18:9 doesn’t fit all content so you are often left with black bars, which aren’t distracting
  • If you’re after a top-tier display, you’ll have to keep looking

Rear Camera

  • 16MP F1.8camera on the rear. Samsung S5K3P8 sensor which is a 1/2.8-inch sensor with 1.12 micron pixels.
  • The F5 can only record videos as high as 1080p. Quality is decent enough

Positive

  • Excellent camera speed, even when using HDR mode or leaving the camera in HDR auto.
  • Short post processing delay, if you need to take multiple photos in short succession.
  • Still quality is adequate for a mid-ranger. There is plenty of detail, colors are good and noise is kept low.

Negative

  • Exposure metering can be off, so it’s not the most reliable point and shoot
  • Noticeable corner softness and dynamic range is not great.
  • No Optical image stabilization (OIS) which does help with faster low light photos and obviously stabilizing video. No OIS typically means slightly softer photos.
  • Focus can be unreliable, especially when going macro, the photo might be great, but it may not be the point of focus you were hoping for.
  • Though capable of a great photo in daylight, fine detail might look flat and in general, the photos aren’t particularly sharp.
    Relatively dark scenes often look clear but are rarely super-sharp

Oppo F5 rear camera sample photos

Oppo F5 Rear camera low light sample photos

Oppo F5 2X Zoom sample photos:

Selfie Camera

  • 20MP Selfie Camera Sony IMX376 sensor
  • Ai powered selfies. You can see this in action when beauty mode is in Auto Mode.
    Oppo F5’s selfie camera even lets you use background blur, although the phone doesn’t have the dual cameras normally required to achieve such effects. Instead, it simply recognizes your head and shoulders and blurs around them. Luckily the F5 recognizes multiple faces and won’t blur them, all though we do feel the faces further back are a little less sharp than they should be.
    The camera interface has borrowed a lot from the iOS app. Most settings are on the left, while different modes can be selected on the right next to the shutter key. Strangely, the left-hand side also has a few additional modes that didn’t find a spot in the right carousel.

Positive

  • The Auto mode does a good job of keeping your selfie natural looking in most scenarios, but personal preference has me putting the default to 1 or 2 so I avoid looking plastic and totally featureless.
  • Colors are good and though there is bokeh multi face detection will stop the people further back in the photo from being blurred out.

Negative

  • When set to full the beauty mode is so aggressive and fake, it’s not for me, but some people will like this flawless touch on occasion.

Ai powered. Low light selfie handles direct back-light very well.

Hardware

  • Octa-core MediaTek MT6763T CPU
  • 32GB storage and 4GB RAM
  • Fingerprint sensor on the rear
  • 7.5mm thick and 152g
  • No NFC
  • Dual SIM or SD Card slot

Positive

  • The Helio P23 supports Dual 4G LTE and DSDS (Dual SIM, Dual standby) on both its slots, but also Dual VoLTE/ViLTE. That means both SIM cards can take advantage of high bandwidth data transfer and crisp audio calls.
  • Good hardware for the price point, feels better in hand than you would expect

Negative

  • Missing high-end capabilities for gaming

Software

  • Android 7.1.1 with Color OS
  • ColorOS is a mashup between Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, purists will object, but the recent iterations haven’t become quite usable. Earlier iterations were the worst of the two ecosystems in one handset, which was at times unusable
  • Face unlock. This rely’s on the front facing camera and not an IR based approach like Apple. However, thanks to the very high-quality sensor in the front facing camera, it works surprisingly well.
  • ColorOS 3.2 is closer the the iOS aesthetic than ever. Quick toggles have their own shade that pulls up from the bottom. Notifications can’t be swiped away, but require a second tap. Many Oppo applications have some of their settings positioned outside the app and into the main settings menu, like on iOS.

Positive

  • It’s the closest you can get to iOS on Android, if you’re switching over, you’ll find some of the behaviors similar, like swiping up for the action center.
  • Themes is wonderful. Some themes have uniform icon shapes; some don’t. Some even make the icons smaller or larger, which has a surprising impact on how Android looks. A few themes also add unlock screens.
  • Oppo has been introducing interesting new features in its ROM, like WeChat payments via fingerprints, a dedicated night mode, and more refined UX.
  • ColorOS has a pretty in-depth notification permission and management system that differentiates notification areas and goes all the way down to a per-app level.
  • You can have cloned apps, which means you can log in to two different accounts (one for your partner, one for your lover)
    Screen-off gestures are customizable and muscle memory can whip you into any app in a flick. Just run your finger across a black screen – O to start the camera, V for the flashlight, several symbols to control the music player and a few custom options.
  • Built-in Photo encryption
  • Recently deleted folder, in case you accidentally delete that perfect selfie.

Negative

  • Settings setup isn’t entirely logical
  • It’s the closest you can get to iOS on Android, if you like the hardware but want Android, you’ll have to get used to a new experience.
  • If you want to install stock Android, you’ll have a hard time, Oppo has gone to great lengths to keep you using ColorOS.
    The OS isn’t the most bloated, but we wouldn’t call it a “clean installation” either. It comes pre-loaded with social networking apps, a document editor, and few minor-footprint apps.
  • You can also set-up Quiet Time for notifications and calls. There is an auto power on and off scheduler as well, but oddly it’s in a whole separate menu, called Additional Features.

Performance

  • MediaTek MT6763V CPU (aka Helio P23) built on 16nm manufacturing process that uses a total of eight Cortex-A53 cores (4 @ 2.3GHz and 4 @ 1.6GHz)
  • ColorOS employs invasive battery-saving techniques that stop most apps using too much power

Oppo F5 Benchmarks

AnTuTu 63294
Basemark X 9213
PCMark Work 2.0 3647

Positive

  • Fast reliable UI

Negative

  • Have noticed an occasional screen lags when switching apps, over the 3 week review period there have been half a dozen or so.
  • Geekbench 4 refuses to run on the phone, we’re guessing it’s because ColorOS is so obsessed with saving data and power it doesn’t let the app use the network connection.

Battery Life

  • 3200mAh battery with a fast charge that tops up an empty handset in about two hours.
  • Standby time is excellent
  • All Day Battery life for the average to heavy user, 2 day for a very light user because of the good standby time.
  • 0-50% charge in 30min, the other 50% will take just under 1.5Hours.
  • PCMark Battery life score of

Positive

  • Battery life is solid, with a full day of fairly extensive use completely realistic. While I normally charge my phone every night, at one point during testing the Oppo F5 lasted until around midday on day two.

Negative

Oppo doesn’t let you see the screen on time.

Sound

  • Built-in FM Radio
  • Single Speaker

Positive

  • With an active external amplifier, the clarity of the Oppo F5 audio output is top notch, while volume is nicely high.

Negative

  • Single speaker
  • No high-end audio capabilities for the headphones

Price

At 400EUR thie OPPO F5 is a little steep considering you can get a OnePlus 5 for 440EUR, the selfie camera might not be as good but overall the OS is a more familiar Android experience and the CPU a little quicker.

Rating
Design / 8
Camera / 7.5
Sound / 7
Performance / 7
Battery Life / 8.5
Software / 7
Price / 7
Editor's Choice / 8
Hardware / 7.5
Display / 8
Oppo F5

The Oppo F5 is a solid mid-range phone whose selfie camera is just as good, or technically better than the one on the back. It comes packed with easy all-day battery life, solid fast performance and a fantastic selfie camera that comes with AI capabilities to make you look effortlessly beautiful all the time.

Like all mid-range phones out there, we’ve got compromises, it’s not metal, no OIS (for a camera focused phone, this should have been included), no VOOC fast charge or NFC.

In a sea of mid-range phones that are all looking the same, the Oppo F5 stands out with its good looks and thin bezeless design. If selfies are important to you and all you want is a solid no-frills handset, the F5 could be your next handset.

7.6
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