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The OnePlus Nord 2, additionally referred to as the “flagship killer,” has some spectacular specs and performs effectively all spherical. 


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

OnePlus calls its model new Nord 2 the “flagship killer,” and I get why. This phone has spectacular specs, performs effectively and when paired with a reasonable beginning price (solely £399 right here within the UK), it is designed to supply every little thing you’d want from a phone with out emptying your checking account. A highly effective processor, a strong twin rear digital camera setup, 5G connectivity, tremendous quick charging — and it isn’t unhealthy to take a look at both. 

Read extra: OnePlus Nord 2 vs. Nord vs. Nord CE vs. OnePlus 9: Comparing OnePlus’ newest telephones

Like the earlier Nord — and the cheaper Nord CE, launched simply a few weeks again — the Nord 2 won’t be on sale within the US. It’s destined for the UK and wider Europe, the place it’s going to price £399 for the model with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage or £469 with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. For reference, £399 converts to about $540 or AU$740.

But no, it does not actually “kill” any flagships. It’s not as highly effective as a “true” flagship just like the iPhone 12 Pro Max or S21 Ultra, nor will its digital camera abilities appeal to the world’s most demanding photographers. The flagship that I really feel is most in danger is OnePlus’s personal 9 collection, which shares many options with the Nord 2, but has a a lot increased beginning price of £629 ($729). 

I’ve spent a quick period of time with the Nord 2 forward of its unveiling, and listed here are the 5 issues I like most about it.

A highly effective MediaTek processor 

OnePlus has usually used Qualcomm’s Snapdragon line of processors for its telephones nevertheless it went with MediaTek’s Dimensity 1200-AI chip for the Nord 2. You’ll discover completely no distinction in use — it is the identical as some other Android phone — however you’ll discover that it is surprisingly highly effective for the price. 

While it isn’t up there with the iPhone 12 Pro Max when it comes to benchmarks, it did beat the Pixel 5 and wasn’t far under the dearer OnePlus 9. It’s actually highly effective sufficient for gaming, picture enhancing and video streaming and navigating across the Android 11 interface is easy and stutter free.

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The OnePlus Nord 2 homes a highly effective processor, a twin rear digital camera setup, 5G connectivity and tremendous quick charging. 


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Android 11 software program

The Nord 2 runs Android 11 at its core, over which OnePlus has slapped its typical Oxygen software program. I actually like OnePlus’s software program because it’s neat, simple to make use of and does not try to load the phone up with too many bundled providers and bloatware. As a outcome, the phone stays nippy and trouble-free for longer.

It’s significantly essential on decrease and midrange telephones that may not cope as effectively with being slowed down by providers. The outcome right here is a phone with easy efficiency that I anticipate to stay for a while to return. 

OnePlus says it is assured to get a minimum of two years of Android upgrades — so an replace to Android 12 this fall and Android 13 subsequent yr is a given — with a further yr of safety updates after that. 

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The OnePlus Nord 2 runs Android 11 software program. 


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Incredible quick charging

The Nord 2 has the identical 65-watt quick charging seen on the OnePlus 9 collection and it is wonderful. It’ll take the phone from empty to full in solely about half-hour, which makes it wonderful for giving it a fast enhance earlier than you head out from residence. The 4,500-mAh battery ought to nonetheless offer you a day of use from a cost, however when you’ll be able to recharge so shortly, battery life turns into considerably much less of a difficulty.

Even higher is that a 65-watt quick charger comes within the field, so that you need not scour Amazon for one. What the phone does not have is wi-fi charging, however I do not see that as a specific drawback. 

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The OnePlus Nord 2 has speedy charging with 65-watt assist.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Vibrant, sharp show

The Nord 2’s show measures 6.43 inches and boasts a decision of two,400×1,080 pixels, which is ample to make tiny textual content look good and sharp. It’s an AMOLED panel, making it extraordinarily vibrant too: great for movies, pictures or taking part in no matter colourful sport is at the moment making the rounds on the Google Play Store.

It has a 90Hz refresh price which is a contact decrease than the 120Hz of the OnePlus 9 collection, however I doubt you’d be capable to inform any actual distinction in day-to-day use. It’s silky easy when scrolling across the interface, however you may also flip it right down to a extra common 60Hz, which can apparently assist save battery life. 

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The primary cameras on the OnePlus Nord 2 are a 50-megapixel lens mixed with a 8-megapixel super-wide lens.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Decent rear cameras

We have not completed our full suite of digital camera checks but, however what we have seen from the cameras up to now seems good. The primary sensor is a 50-megapixel affair — the identical one seen within the OnePlus 9’s ultrawide digital camera. Outdoor pictures look well-exposed, with loads of element and natural-looking colours. 

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OnePlus Nord 2 outside digital camera check, customary lens.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

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OnePlus Nord 2 outside digital camera check, customary lens.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

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OnePlus Nord 2 outside digital camera check, super-wide lens.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

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OnePlus Nord 2 outside digital camera check, customary lens with 2x digital zoom.


Andrew Hoyle/CNET

The 8-megapixel super-wide lens is noticeably much less detailed, nevertheless it too appears able to capturing handsome outside pictures. There’s an on-screen possibility for 2x zoom however there is not a zoom lens, in order that 2x relies on digitally cropping the shot. Results nonetheless look good, nevertheless it’s value retaining in thoughts that you simply will not get most high quality doing this. 

There’s additionally technically a 2-megapixel monochrome sensor, which is completely pointless in my view as a photographer. If you need handsome black and white pictures, use the common digital camera and apps like Adobe Lightroom or Snapseed to have full management over changing to mono. Frankly, I really feel OnePlus might have pulled this out and lopped one other 20 quid or so off the price. 

OnePlus Nord 2 specs

Display dimension, decision, refresh price 6.43-inch AMOLED, FHD+ (2,400×1,080 pixels), 90Hz
Pixel density 410ppi
Dimensions (Inches) 6.25×2.88×0.32 in.
Dimensions (Millimeters) 158.9×73.2×8.25 mm
Weight (Grams) 6.66 oz; 189g
Software Android 11
Camera 50MP (primary),  8MP (wide-angle),  2MP (mono)
Front digital camera 32-megapixel
Video 4K
Processor MediaTek Dimensity 1200-AI processor
Storage 128/256GB
RAM 8/12GB RAM
Fingerprint reader No
Battery 4,500 mAh
Price In-display
Connector USB-C
Headphone Jack No
Special options 5G-enabled, 65W quick charging, 90Hz, twin stereo speaker, face unlock
Price (USD) Approximately $540 (transformed from UK price)
Price (GBP) £399
Price (AUD) Approximately AU$740

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