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OPPO Reno 3 Review

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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was not until recently since we got the official Philippine price of the OPPO Reno 3.

The delayed price announcement has prohibited us from formulating our full review. Because, as you know, we’ve already had this device for quite sometime now. Our hands-on review of this handset has been out since last March.

But now, we finally have the price and everything we need to complete our OPPO Reno 3 full review. So, without delaying it much further, let’s start digging in.

OPPO Reno 3 specs

  • Android 10, ColorOS 7
  • Dual SIM, Dual Standby
  • 6.4-inch AMOLED display, 2400 x 1080 pixel resolution, ~441ppi
  • Corning Gorilla Glass 5 (front and back)
  • MediaTek Helio P90 octa-core processor
  • 8GB/12GB RAM
  • Mali-G77 GPU
  • 128GB internal storage
  • 44-megapixel
  • 48-megapixel (f/1.8) + 13-megapixel (telephoto, 2x optical zoom) + 8-megapixel (ultra-wide) + 2-megapixel (mono) rear cameras, PDAF, LED flash
  • In-display fingerprint scanner, Face unlock
  • 4G LTE, 5G
  • WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax, dual-band
  • Bluetooth
  • GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, BDS
  • NFC
  • USB Type-C
  • Dimensions: 160.2 mm x 73.3 mm x 7.9 mm
  • Weight: 170g
  • Colors: Starry Night Blue, Sunrise, Black, White
  • 4,025mAh non-removable battery, 30 VOOC 4.0 fast-charging support

Design and Build Quality

The OPPO Reno 3 shares the same sleek and lightweight build to the Reno 3 Pro. Although, the Reno 3 is a tadbit smaller on paper.

They have curved edges on the back, making it feel really comfortable in the hands. Although, I wish that the front glass was a bit curved, too. The sharp corners can be annoying at times.

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The only way you can tell them apart is by the cameras on the back. The Pro model has a larger glass as it accommodates all the four cameras and the LED flash. On the other hand, the non-Pro variant has a slimmer glass, with the LED flash on the side.

Still, the back panel looks really clean. Other than the cameras, we only have the OPPO logo on the bottom right. OPPO was able to achieve this by putting the fingerprint scanner beneath the screen.

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LR: OPPO Reno 3, Reno 3 Pro

Speaking of which, we have the 6.4-inch AMOLED screen on the front. There’s a notch on top of the screen for the 44-megapixel selfie camera. This is another design difference between the two, since the Pro model has a large punch-hole for the dual front cameras instead of a notch.

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LR: OPPO Reno 3, Reno 3 Pro

The top of the screen only has the noise-isolating microphone, while on the bottom we have the USB Type-C port, loudspeaker, primary microphone, and thankfully, a headphone jack.

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We have the SIM card tray on the left, which can house two nano SIM cards and a microSD card. That’s above the volume controls, with the lock/power switch on the opposite side.

The buttons provides an audible sound when pressed, but not the most satisfying thing to press. The lock/power button has the signature OPPO green strip.

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The OPPO Reno 3 unit that we have here is the Starry Night Blue model. It’s a color gradient of white/silver and blue, with hints of purple. It looks really shiny on this Corning Gorilla Glass 5 panel, which is the same glass that’s protecting the screen.

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If this color is not your cup of tea, the Reno 3 is also available in Black and White.

Display and Sound Quality

It appears that the OPPO Reno 3 has the same display as the Pro model. This thing has a 6.4-inch FHD+ AMOLED screen, with a 2400 x 1080 pixel resolution, and ~441ppi. It also has TÜV Rheinland Low Blue Light Certification so you can use it safely for hours without stressing your eyes.

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The screen lacks a 90Hz refresh rate and HDR10 support, which is really disappointing for a device at this price.

But if you can get past that, the display on the OPPO Reno 3 offers good sharpness, great for those who like reading. The colors are vibrant and the contrast is deep, just like most OLED screen. It can also get really bright for outdoor usability.

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The bottom-firing loudspeaker has decent volume and well-balanced sound. But for better listening, you can plug in a pair of earphones and experience the device’s Dolby Atmos and Hi-Res Audio technology.

Hardware and Performance

The OPPO Reno 3 is powered by a MediaTek Helio P90 processor, with a PowerVR GM9446 GPU, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB (97.6GB usable) of expandable storage.

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Thanks to the generous flagship-level 8GB of memory, multitasking is seamless on this phone. Apps load fast, flicking through social media news feeds is smooth, and taking pictures is ‘snappy’.

Games run fine, but we’ve definitely seen other devices performed better. Light titles like Mobile Legends ran smoothly at good graphics. However, you have to lower down the graphics settings on demanding games like Call of Duty Mobile and Asphalt 9 for a smoother experience.

OPPO Reno 3 Benchmark scores

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The overall performance of the OPPO Reno 3 is reflected in its benchmark score. As you can see, the large RAM really helps to up the score, albeit the CPU and GPU performance are less than impressive.

Software and User Interface

The OPPO Reno 3 runs on the new  Android 10-based ColorOS 7, just like the flagship Find X2 Pro and other newer OPPO handsets.

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At first look, ColorOS 7 looks similar to its predecessor. But if you look closely, you can notice that it’s more streamlined and cleaner.

For one, you can choose between three different icon styles: default, pebble, and rectangle. The system-wide Dark Mode is not only easy in the eyes but can also improve battery life.

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Multi-user mode lets you share the device with other users, think of it as the User Profiles on PCs. The camera app is intuitive to use. It also uses the Google Keyboard that’s easy to type on and familiar to use.

Overall, the interface of the OPPO Reno 3 compliments the device’s hardware. Over the previous generations, ColorOS have greatly improved in terms of style and usability.

Camera Quality

The OPPO Reno 3 has a quad-camera setup on the back. Let’s start with the 48-megapixel main shooter with an f/1.8 aperture and PDAF. It takes really clean and sharp images, especially outdoors or with good lighting.

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Just like the Pro model, the colors look really vibrant without looking too unrealistic. It also offers a shallow depth-of-field for that professional-camera look.

But just like most camera phones, it does struggle in low-light conditions with mixed-up White Balance in most times. Although, it’s still better than other’s we’ve seen. You can also use the night mode feature for brighter images.

The 8-megapixel ultra-wide outputs the same colorful images with deep contrast, but the details aren’t as sharp as the former. On the upside, the OPPO Reno 3 did a great job of handling the edges, so it won’t suffer from stretched corners, unlike other ultra-wide cameras.

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The OPPO Reno 3 is also capable of 2x optical zoom thanks to its 13-megapixel telephoto lens. The four toggles on the viewfinder lets you switch from ultra-wide, 1x, 2x, and 5x.

Images looks fairly clean at 2x, while 5x is forgivable and still very usable. You can slide the toggle to bring up the dial that lets you reach 20x of digital zoom. As expected, details are now terrible since you’re basically cropping the photo. It can be useful for extreme scenarios, but not everything.

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1x
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2x optical zoom
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5x hybrid zoom
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20x digital zoom

We also have a 2-megapixel mono camera. It’s not clear what it’s used for since we’re not seeing any mono option in the camera app. We suspect it’s a special color sensor that enables the cameras’ vibrant and realistic image capture.

Lastly, we have the star of the show, the 44-megapixel selfie camera. As expected, it takes really sharp and well-detailed photos. Having this much pixel also means that it works well in low-light.

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The pixel-packed sensor also allows the AI Face Beauty feature to have more room to work with, so the overall image wouldn’t look softened and low-quality.

Security

The OPPO Reno 3 has all the new security features that Android 10 and ColorOS 7 offers on the table. That includes software-level security like file protection, payment security, emergency SOS, block and filter unknown numbers, kid space, app lock, and private safe.

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We also have the in-display fingerprint scanner. It worked fast and reliably — no issues here. In fact, if you want to unlock the device faster, you can enable the Face Unlock feature. The device will be ready for you the moment you pick it up.

Connectivity

OPPO rigged the Reno 3 with all the connectivity that you could ask for. It comes with 4G LTE, dual-band WiFi, Bluetooth 5.0, multiple GPS antennas, USB Type-C, and even NFC. Although, as we said earlier, the unit that we have here in the Philippines doesn’t have 5G connectivity.

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As per our testing, connectivity shouldn’t be an issue on the OPPO Reno 3. Both the earpiece and dual microphones are also great for making calls.

Battery

With the OPPO Reno 3 you’re getting a 4,025mAh battery. In PCMark’s battery test, the device got a score if 7 hours and 29 minutes. That’s a loop of synthetic workload that was ran with the WiFi and Bluetooth off, and the screen and volume set to 50%, until the battery reached 20%.

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This translates to an entire day of light to moderate use. But if you’re a heavy user, the Reno 3 do come with a 20W VOOC Flash Charge 3.0 that lets you fully charge the device in under an hour and a half.

Verdict

Without a doubt, the OPPO Reno 3 is one of the most popular mid-range phones in the market today. That’s thanks to the company’s popularity and the device’s features that are set to appeal to the mainstream market.

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For one, it’s one of the first smartphones to come with a 44-megapixel front camera. A great companion for those who like taking selfies and the growing popularity of video-sharing apps like TikTok.

If you’re an aspiring photographer, the quad-cameras on the back outputs good colors without the need of editing, and has telephoto and ultra-wide lenses for flexibility.

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But if you’re in it for performance, the processor on the OPPO Reno 3 provides a satisfying work. The battery life is reliable, too. However, the OPPO Reno 3 is still suffering from the same cons that its other brothers have — the price nad value for money. There are a lot of competing devices out there who offer more for the same price.

Bottom line is, the OPPO Reno 3 is a good buy, if you can wait for its price to come down.

OPPO Reno 3 price and availability in the Philippines

The OPPO Reno 3 is now available nationwide for a price of Php18,990. But due to the community quarantine that’s currently imposed in most parts of the Philippines, you can only get it in OPPO’s retail partners like Lazada and Shopee.

Pros

  • Sleek and comfortable design
  • Reliable performance and battery life
  • Great cameras, front and back

Cons

  • Expensive for what it offers

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