Review: Oppo hits the premium spot with Find X
By Chong Jinn Xiung August 6, 2018
- Quick unlock using facial recognition on slide-out mechanism
- Performance is impressive and the camera is very good
TAKE a look at the swathe of flagship smartphones out on the market this year and you would be greeted by rows of similarly designed models. So, when Oppo decided to launch their own flagship device, the Find X with its unique design, proved to be a very different proposition.
Launched in Malaysia no more than a month after its initial global reveal in Paris, the Find X is an interesting flagship that takes a step back from the regular rectangular all screen design we have seen of late. The Find X has an air of minimalism in its design and opts to not include a notch, which will definitely please some.
But does style really define Oppo’s flagship or is there actual substance behind it? That is what we plan to find out in this review of the Oppo Find X.
While many phonemakers grapple with the decision to make FullView displays that either include or exclude the notch, Oppo has spared no expense in finding a design that breaks away from this conventional aesthetic.
They succeed in maximising the Find X’s 6.42-inch screen with razor-slim bezels that are just 1.65mm in width, with the Find X possessing a 19.5:9 aspect ratio which makes it one of the largest screen-to-body ratios to date in a smartphone.
Oppo achieved this effect, by doing away with a fingerprint reader and hiding the cameras within a slide-out mechanism dubbed the Stealth 3D camera by Oppo. It is a highly unusual solution that harkens back to slider phones of old.
This leaves you with only one method to unlock the phone, via biometrics, and that is through facial recognition. It is impressive how quickly and silently the camera rises up from the body, takes a quick scan of less than a second before disappearing back.
That said, it is a bit concerning just how these moving parts open the camera up to collecting dust. Having used the phone for two weeks, it was clear from the transparent back that there was dust being introduced on the inside.
Oppo has assured that the mechanism is durable to last throughout the lifetime of the phone, but its durability is still worrying considering this.
Our review unit had a special transparent back that allowed us to take a peek at the internal mechanism that powers the slide-out camera. Unfortunately, this is not available for retail but it would have been cool as a special edition.
In hand, the Find X feels very slim and comfortable to hold. However, due to its smooth back and curved design, the phone was very slippery. The Find X had on several occasions almost slid off a table while charging and fell out of this reviewer's pocket while he was sitting down.
A protective case is most certainly needed but we imagine it can be quite challenging finding cases for the Find X given its unique design.
The Find X comes in two colours, distinctive Bordeaux Red or Glacier Blue. It falls in line with phone makers playing with colourful materials that make the device stand out.
Falling in line with the design language of the Find X, everything around it is kept very minimal. A single power button is on the right while the volume buttons are on the left.
On the bottom you will find a USB-Type C port nested in the centre, flanked by the speaker/ microphone and SIM card tray. It comes to no surprise that there is no 3.5mm headphone jack.
Internally, Find X is equipped with a top-of-the-line Snapdragon 845 processor, which isn’t surprising given that it is the top processor most flagships sport in 2018. Our review unit came with a generous 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. There is, however, no microSD card slot to expand.
In everyday use, the Find X was an absolute beast. It managed to tear through literally anything thrown at it with ease. As our daily driver, the Find X handled multitasking effortlessly thanks to the enormous amount of RAM onboard.
Looking at the benchmark results, the Find X scores extremely well across the board. It most notably has a terrific Antutu score over another flagship we recently tested, the Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S. Looking at the other scores, the Geekbench score wasn’t too surprising or different. PCMark was decidedly better overall and the 3DMark score definitely indicated that this was a graphics powerhouse.
Speaking of gaming, the Find X had no trouble playing the very latest graphics intensive games like Asphalt 9 Legends, Darkness Rises and Into the Dead 2.
Oppo’s Color OS 5.1, running over Android 8.1, has gotten better over time. The interface has matured since we last tested an Oppo device.
There was minimal bloatware on the device. Out of all the default apps on the device, we could only find the Amazon app as the odd duck out of the bunch. Oppo wisely decided to leave the choice up to users to install “recommended” apps from its own app store.
As per usual, Oppo has a dedicated game mode that claims to up the performance when gaming. Interestingly, the Find X takes advantage of its notch-less large screen and implements a slide-out panel on the left that gives you a shortcut to messaging apps and the ability to screen record when gaming. A thoughtful gesture for those who love to cast their games.
The Find X’s 3,730mAh battery is a bit on the larger side compared to other flagships out there. It’s performance, however, was average at best, lasting us close to a full day of use. Using it a full day with moderate to heavy use, the Find X still had 40% left in the tank.
Fortunately, the Find X support’s Oppo’s VOOC fast charging so it should get your phone back up to a full charge within 90 minutes.
A lot has been said about the Find X’s cameras. Though they are hidden within a slide-out mechanism, launching the camera was effortless and quick. Within a second of unlocking the phone, you can begin shooting with it.
You get a standard dual rear camera setup with the Find X, consisting of a 16-Megapixel (f/2.0) and 20-Megapixel (f/2.0) camera. One acts as your standard main camera while the other functions as a telephoto camera.
With Phase Detect Auto Focus, for lightning-fast focusing and Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS), it wasn’t difficult snapping good clear images with the Find X. Autofocus was very quick and locked on to faces in a jiffy.
Daylight shots looked very good and balanced in our tests. The Find X’s use of High Dynamic Range (HDR) to bring out shadows and pull back highlights, is quite aggressive. It borders on looking just slightly artificial but it works really well especially under Malaysia’s harsh midday sun.
Picture quality was especially very sharp, picking up an ample amount of detail. Taking the Find X indoors, the camera still managed to take decent shots with good colour accuracy without introducing too much noise.
The Find X’s low light performance is quite respectable and commendable. It manages to get well exposed steady shots thanks in part to OIS. There is however noticeable noise reduction in dark parts of the image, giving it a pastel-like texture.
Not forgetting the 25-Megapixel front camera, which capitalises on Oppo’s experience in making selfie cameras. The selfies look nice and detailed. The inclusion of a LED flash also opens up opportunities to selfie even in low light.
If there is one major criticism over the camera, it is in its portrait mode. Though the Find X has a variety of cool portrait capture modes that simulate different lighting conditions, very often the camera takes a very long time to process one shot before being able to take another.
The results are not fantastic either, they appear slightly worse than a doctored photoshop photo.
In terms of video prowess, the Find X isn’t too shabby either. It is able to record up to UHD 4K quality though we found Full HD to totally acceptable and we stuck to it throughout the review.
Videos looked pleasing and came with all the standard modes you would come to expect including a slow-motion mode and time-lapse.
It is evident that Oppo is trying really hard to make some headway in the flagship game. Certainly, one can appreciate the efforts Oppo has taken to create a unique design for the Find X which differentiates it from the pack.
The massive 6.42-inch OLED screen is stunning to look at while remaining manageable and practical to use. The extra screen real estate can be put to good use whether you are web browsing, watching videos or playing games.
You won’t come away disappointed by the Find X’s performance. It is a heavy hitter from the get-go and we came away impressed by its multi-tasking capabilities. Gamers meanwhile can expect to run the very best Android games at high settings with the Find X.
The cameras, be it front or rear, are a step above the usual cameras Oppo outputs. It is nice to see that they exhibit great quality in daylight and moderate performance in low light.
However, all this comes at a price. The US$911 (RM3,699) price tag is tough to swallow considering there are plenty of more affordable options in the market. Really, you are paying for the style, design as well as the generally good camera of the Find X.
Honestly, with plenty of cheaper flagship models with a similar chipset and increasingly good mid-range smartphones, the Find X may only find an audience among premium buyers who value style over anything else.