One Plus 3: The One Who Never Settles

 
One Plus3

One Plus3


With the launch of the OnePlus 3, Conchita Fernandes puts it to the test and finds out if the phone lives up to its popular lineage.

Since the beginning, OnePlus has sought to give users the best quality and design at a pocketfriendly price point. No wonder their phones are so eagerly anticipated and often sold out. This time though, the OnePlus 3 was available on a non-invite basis. So as soon as I received the phone, I was not curious, but eager to see what the latest iteration had in store.

What’s New in the Phone
The OnePlus 3 has been upgraded to a 16MP f/2 rear camera with OIS and EIS, and an 8MP front camera. But, the phone misses the dual LED flash and laser AF present in the OP 2, and features an LED flash instead. Also, the company has brought back RAW shooting, only that you cannot shoot in RAW when using the burst mode (20 images) and the Manual mode in the camera.

In the Auto mode, the camera has HDRa highlighted, which means that it decides whether the scene requires the use of HDR or not. Of course, the use of HDR, which is always done by quick burst, can produce strange albeit interesting results while shooting fast moving subjects. Photograph/Conchita Fernandes

In the Auto mode, the camera has HDRa highlighted, which means that it decides whether the scene requires the use of HDR or not. Of course, the use of HDR, which is always done by quick burst, can produce strange albeit interesting results while shooting fast moving subjects. Photograph/Conchita Fernandes

Otherwise, the phone more or less retains the same features as the OP 2, with a 5.5-inch display (which performed well on extremely bright days), 4k video recording at 30fps and the inclusion of NFC. The only downgrade appears to be in the battery, which has been reduced from 3300mAh to 3000mAh.

The Good and the Bad
The OnePlus provides the usual modes— Time Lapse, Slow Motion, Photo, Video, Manual and Panorama. There is also an HD and HDR option, which can be accessed only one at a time. The HD option is said to produce sharper images, but I did not find much of a difference. As for my shooting experience, the OnePlus 3 was an absolute delight. It was fast with no lag in AF. However, I wasn’t too kicked about the quality of the JPEGs. There was noise reduction, with very visible smearing. The RAW files on the other hand, were very good. Nevertheless, the camera did a good job in capturing quite a lot of details and textures in the photographs, and did not over brighten the scene. There was minimal to no flare as well.

For the most part, the phone stays true to the original colours of the scene and does not oversaturate it. Photograph/Conchita Fernandes

For the most part, the phone stays true to the original colours of the scene and does not oversaturate it. Photograph/Conchita Fernandes

What Makes it a Steal
Despite its average JPEG engine, the OnePlus 3, is a good phone on the whole. At Rs. 27,999, you are not just getting good image quality, a RAW shooting feature and 4k video recording, but a device with double the RAM (6GB) than the OnePlus 2 and more importantly, a phone that offers a good build quality and feels extremely sleek and stylish to carry around. At the price point it’s available for, the OnePlus 3 feels like a bit of a steal, and definitely lives up to its popular lineage.

AT A GLANCE
SPECIFICATIONS 16MP f/2 rear camera, 8MP front camera, 64GB inbuilt memory, Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 6GB RAM, Rs. 27,999
WHAT WE LIKE Sleek design, great UI, good colour reproduction, fast AF
WHAT WE DISLIKE Unable to shoot RAW in the Manual mode
WHY BUY IT The phone produces good images, offers great specs and hardware, all at a very pocket-friendly price tag.
FINAL RATINGS 85%
CAMERA FEATURES 16MP rear camera, OIS, fast phone  22/25 
IMAGE QUALITY  Good low light performance and RAW files  24/30
VIDEO QUALITY 4k video at 30fps  13/15
HANDLING  Easy to hold, smooth exterior  13/15
SPEED & RESPONSIVENESS Speedy phone without any lag  13/15
Tags: August 2016, Better Cellphone Photography, Better Photography Recommended, Conchita Fernandes, One Plus, One Plus 3, Review