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#7DayReviewChallenge switching from an iPhone 6S?

  1. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 2, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 2, 2017 :
    Day One - Unboxing:
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    Hey what is up it`s me Red-Pi and today I start the OnePlus 5T - 7 Day Review Challenge.

    I ordered the OnePlus 5T Base Modell with 64 GB of storage and 6 GB of Ram, which for my use case should be enough. But I want to put my review and everything that follows in the next days into context. I mostly used iOS in my smartphone life, apart from a week with a OnePlus One. So, after all these iOS years I just need something different in my life. Furthermore my iPhone sometimes acts up. Sometimes the keyboard input on the edge doesn’t work, other times the fingerprint reader doesn’t unlock my phone. So I made the plan to switch from an iPhone 6S to the new OnePlus 5T.

    I ordered the OnePlus 5T with the early bird bundle consisting of a tempered glass screen protector and the sandstone case. The sandstone case has a nice feel and will probably provide a good grip. I don’t think it will protect the phone, as it’s just a thin hard plastic shell with the texture on the back. But that’s a good thing for me as I don’t normally use cases and a thin case is a lot more likely to stay on the phone.
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    Time to take a look at the OnePlus 5Ts box. I think it is strange that the front of the box just says 5 and the sides OnePlus 5T. Why is there no T on the front? I don’t know, but it´s weird. Other than that I like the white and red box design. Opening the box immediately reveals the phone, which can be lifted with the help of a small tab.
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    Inside we find a red charging cable, a Dash Charger, some paper work, a sim tool and a plastic case.
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    The cable comes with reusable clips, which I think is a lot better than the throw away clear plastic you get with the iPhone. The sim tool is no longer in its own red plastic sleeve, as it was with the OnePlus One, but normally you won’t use it all the time so that’s fine.
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    The plastic case is a nice extra and will probably protect the phone a lot better than the sandstone one, but the soft plastic feel isn´t for me. I chose the OnePlus 5T because of the metal build. I just don´t like those glass backs on phones.
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    The 5T sits quite tightly in the red tray, comes with a pre-installed screen protector and an easy to peel of label on the back. Overall the phone feels just like a premium phone should, but the metal doesn´t feel as soft as the iPhones. But all those design related thoughts will be covered in day 2.

    And that’s all there is to my unboxing. Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow with day 2, which will be all about the design and display.

    I plan to release a video for every day of this challenge, so here it is:
     

    Attached Files:


    #1
    Crystal Z. likes this.
  2. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 3, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 3, 2017 :
    Day 2 - Design and Display:
    It`s day 2 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. Today it´s all about the design and display of the new OnePlus 5T.
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    Let`s start with the design: The phone body is made from black anodized aluminium, which feels premium yet harder than the iPhones aluminium or the magnesium of the surface. The antenna lines are black and nicely blend in with the rest of the body. At the back we find an engraved OnePlus logo under the round ceramic fingerprint sensor. At the top we find two glass-covered 20 and 16 megapixel cameras. Unfortunately these cameras protrude and create quite a big camera hump. These camera humps have been the new standard on phones for a while now, but it still bothers me. On the right of the dual cameras we find a small microphone and a led flashlight.

    On the right side of the phone there is a dual sim slot and a metal power button. The power button has a nice feel. Just like the volume switch, which sits right under the alert slider on the left side of the phone. The slider itself has an interesting texture to it.

    On the bottom we find the speaker grill, a USB Type C port, a microphone and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. Apparently a headphone jack is a feature nowadays so I appreciate it.
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    On the front there is just a notification LED, a camera, a metal earpiece and an enormous 6-inch screen.

    While on the iPhone the glass and metal completely curve around the device, which makes it nicer to hold. The metal body of the 5T curves nicely until it hits a sharp edge. This leads makes it a little bit less comfortable to hold, especially because of its size. The overall build quality is good though.

    The display is a 6 inch 1080 by 2160 pixel AMOLED display covered by gorilla glass 5. The corners of the screen a rounded, which gives the display a better look in my opinion. The rounded corners are subtle enough to not lose any screen space, but still add a nice look.
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    I know some people obsess over screen resolutions, but I think this 1080p display is perfectly sharp. As this is my first AMOLED display I am amazed by the black blacks. Colours and viewing angles are fine. AMOLED enables a really nice screen when you pick up the phone, because only the nonblack pixels are lit. This screen shows icons for the apps that have notifications but not the actual notifications, which is unfortunate.

    The final part of day two is a showcase of the personalized wallpaper. My wallpaper isn’t downloaded from anywhere it is a picture of my dog I took on the beach. She had to work quite hard for this shot, but I think it turned out awesome.

    So thanks for reading and see you tomorrow for day 3 the camera day.

    Here is todays video:
     

    Attached Files:


    #2
    Crystal Z. likes this.
  3. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 4, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 4, 2017 :
    Day 3 - Camera:
    It`s day 3 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. Today it´s all about the cameras of the OnePlus 5T.
    Edit: I didn't really had time to check out the raw photos of the OnePlus. These fix basicly all my complains with the rear camera, as they don't apply noise reduction and therefore grant a sharper image with just the regular harsh noise. It's still alot more noise than I would expect, but I like those raws a lot more.
    Unfortunately pro mode is not available for the front camera and the front camera is my main problem with those post processing filters.

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    The OnePlus 5Ts front camera has a 16 megapixel sensor with a f/2.0 aperture, which can record at 1080p with 30 fps. On the back of the OnePlus 5T we find two cameras: a main 16 megapixel camera and a secondary 20 megapixel camera. Both have a f/1.7 aperture. The main camera can record 4K at 30 fps, 1080p at 60 fps and 720p at 120 fps. So what does the second camera do? It exists for low-light photography, where 4 pixels are combined to 1 to reduce noise, which apparently doesn’t work as the lowlight photos are saved as 20 megapixel photos. Furthermore it enables the portrait mode which adds background blur. So I really don’t know why every new phone has to have 2 cameras at the back, but I really don’t get the OnePlus 5Ts setup. Couldn’t you just combine the pixels of the main camera to achieve better low light performance? And blurring the background in portrait mode? Well the pixel 2 does it better without a secondary camera and this feature still needs some work. All in all I would have ditch the second camera and put in a better main camera, or at least a second camera with a different field of view, like a fisheye lens.
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    But let’s get into testing. Comparing the OnePlus against a DSLR with a good lens would be unfair, even though some phone marketing departments claim that these are comparable, which is simply a lie. So that mean my 5T will be compared to my iPhone 6S.

    The 6S features a 12 megapixel camera with a f/2.2 aperture and can record video at 4K 30 fps, 1080p at 120 fps and 720p at 240 fps. The front camera uses a 5 megapixel sensor, which can record 720p videos.

    Let´s get into the comparison! The OnePlus 5T is on the left and the iPhone is on the right. This test scene was lit by two softboxes.
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    One the first photo we can see that the OnePlus got the white balance right, but the iPhone failed. Furthermore the 5Ts wider aperture adds more blur to everything that’s not in focus, while the iPhones depth to field is bigger. The 5Ts photo also keeps more detail due to the higher resolution, but has a round blurry noise pattern.
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    When we turn off the softboxes and just use the standard lights the 5T takes a brighter shot with softer noise, but less sharpness compared to the 6S.
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    With even less light both phones lose most detail. The iPhones noise is quite harsh and the OnePlus noise blurs the image.

    The OnePlus has a portrait mode, which blurs the background to have a DSLR-like image. The second camera is used to determine what should be in focus, but the blur is all software. I don´t like this feature as it’s simply fake blur and doesn’t do a good job at the edges. But to each his own.

    But there is a big problem with the OnePlus 5T: the front camera. While the beauty mode on the rear camera can be switched off, which it should, we can’t turn it off for the front camera. This results in unnatural photos.

    Looking at these photo in detail makes me realize the 5Ts cameras are actually okay smartphone cameras, but every time I took a picture in my everyday life with the OnePlus I didn’t like the result. Maybe I am simply to picky. Something feels off, but I can´t any evidence that there is something wrong. Obviously a smartphone won’t replace a dedicated camera, but for snapshots the OnePlus should be alright. Still I think there is some kind of noise reduction going on which makes the noise softer and therefore softens the image. The iPhone simply has harsher noise, but simply looks sharper at everything below optimal lighting conditions.

    The 5Ts camera has a build in Pro Mode, that allows us to control all the camera settings, except for aperture as its fixed in the small smartphone lenses. It’s nice that we don’t have to download another app to control this and this app allows us to shot raw in the dng format.

    So lets compare the video capabilities. Both cameras shot 4K in 30 fps and the rest of my YouTube video is 1080p upscaled to 4K.

    When I first got my iPhone I though it would be a good idea to use it to record 4K, but I dropped the idea, when I saw the amount of noise. This is still the same with the OnePlus. The video probably has no or has a lot less noise reduction applied, which makes me realize how much sharper, but noisier, the OnePlus photos could look. The EIS, or electronic image stabilization, isn’t as good as physical stabilization and can lead to a stuttery pans at certain speeds.

    So all in all I have to say the OnePlus has a capable smartphone camera. I think the budget for the secondary camera could have spend better and the inability to turn off the beauty mode on the front camera is horrible. For me something is off with the 5Ts camera, but I can’t find what.

    So thanks for reading and see you tomorrow for day 4 the performance day.

    Here is todays video:
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017

    #3
  4. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 5, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 5, 2017 :
    Day 4 - Performance:
    It`s day 4 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. Today it´s all about the performance of the OnePlus 5T.
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    So before we get into the test let’s talk about the specs of the OnePlus 5T. The OnePlus 5T uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 octa-core processor clocked at up to 2.45 GHz and an Adreno 540 GPU. This is paired with either 6 or 8 GB of RAM. The 5T has the same specs as any top tier android phone out there, so performance should be top notch.
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    We will compare the OnePlus to my iPhone 6S in this review so here are the specs of the 6S. In the iPhone 6S we find an Apple A9 dual-core ship clocked at 1.84 GHz. But there is one big difference: The iPhone is using iOS.
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    Before we get into benchmarks I want to talk about the everyday stuff. Both phones open Apps extremely quickly, and navigate around their interface flawlessly. But there is a difference when you unlock the phones. The fingerprint reader on the OnePlus 5T feels a lot faster. Some of this is due to the cutting down on animations, but even without this benefit the OnePlus would be faster. But the fingerprint reader isn’t the only way to unlock the 5T. You can also use a face unlock feature, which is really fast as well. The face unlock works fine in the evening, but it doesn’t work in completely dark rooms. In my daily usage of the 5T I never see the lock screen, which makes the phone feel so much faster compared to the iPhone. The iPhone has a lot more and a lot longer animation almost everywhere, which now that I have used the OnePlus feel unnecessary.

    I don’t normally play games on my phone as I simply don’t like most mobile games. That’s why you are only getting benchmarks with me, but games should run fine on both devices.
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    In the AnTuTu benchmark the OnePlus scores 178020 points, while the iPhone 6S (a two year old device) scores 125485 points. The biggest difference can be seen in the 3D score, probably due to Adreno GPU.
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    Next up is 3D Mark Sling Shot Extreme. The iPhone got 2131 points, while the OnePlus managed to get 3538 points.
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    So the OnePlus 5T is definitely faster than the iPhone 6S, but that’s to be expected. Both phones feel responsive in day to day activities and that’s whats important to me. But the shorter, snappier animations make the OnePlus 5T the clear winner.

    But I have got another thing I want to talk about: The radio antenna performance. While I didn’t see any differences in the Wi-Fi performance, the cellular data connection of the 6S seems to be better than the 5T. The 5T loses the cellular connection a lot faster in remote location or tunnels compared to the iPhone. Furthermore the 5T sometimes doesn’t connect to the mobile internet, when I leave the house. If I turn mobile data on and off, or toggle airplane mode, the OnePlus connects to the internet just fine, but there a hiccups. I think this can be addressed in a software update and I hope it will be, because not having a mobile data connection when leaving the house is unacceptable.

    So that’s my take on the OnePlus 5Ts performance. Thanks for reading and I hope I you tomorrow for day 5 the power consumption day.

    Here is todays video:
     

    Attached Files:


    #4
  5. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 6, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 6, 2017 :
    Day 5 - Battery:
    It`s day 5 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. Today it´s all about the battery of the OnePlus 5T.
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    The OnePlus 5T is equipped with a 3300 mAh non-removable battery. The phone comes with a red USB Type C charging cable and a Dash Charging brick. The Dash Charger is bigger and heavier than a normal phone charger, but it can deliver 4 amperes at 5 volts.

    Let’s start with the power consumption. I don’t game on my phone, but watch a couple of YouTube videos throughout the day. Other than that, I surf the web, chat a lot, use some social media apps and keep auto brightness on. So I am not a power user but I don’t go out of my way to save battery life. In my time with the 5T I never had to worry about my battery life. Normally I can go one and a half days without the need to charge, but if I don’t watch as many videos I can easily get 2 days out of it.
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    I won’t go out of my way to test the battery life on my phone due to time constrains. There are informative posts and videos out there like this video:

    I haven’t used the included dash charger a lot, as I normally charge my phone overnight (the iPhone teaches you to do this). If you need it dash charging will be the fastest option out there to charge your phone, but it could hurt the battery lifespan.
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    I know this part of my review isn’t all that informative or useful and I am sorry. The 5T will get you through the day and can be charged really quickly so in this department the OnePlus can't disappoint.

    So thanks for reading even thought this part isn’t that fleshed out. I hope you join me tomorrow for day 6 – the OxygenOS day.

    BTW: I updated the camera part of my review.
    Here is todays video, but its not that interesting:
     

    Attached Files:


    #5
  6. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 7, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 7, 2017 :
    Day 6 - OxygenOS:
    It`s day 6 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. Today it´s all about operation system of the OnePlus 5T. The OnePlus uses its own android variant called OxygenOS, or HydrogenOS in china. It’s supposedly close to base android with a lot of customization options on top.
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    I am a long time iOS user and don’t know what features are OxygenOS and which are android feature so I’m simply going to cover the entire OS.

    Before we even pick up the phone one thing is new to the typical iOS user, the notification LED. It is fantastic you can assign different colours to different apps and with just a glance you know if there is something new or not. I love this feature, android people may think this is a given, but no it’s not and that’s quite sad. I hate lights in my room when I’m sleeping so if there was a convenient way to turn of the LED, for example by activating do not disturb, this feature would be even better.
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    When we pick up the phone we see another feature, which isn’t enabled by default, a screen with the time and little icons for every app that send a notification. It would be cool if we could read the notifications on this screen, but we can’t. Still this is a nice replacement for the lock screen. Don’t get me wrong the OnePlus 5T still has a lock screen, but with the face unlock and the quick fingerprint reader you are not going to see it.

    We haven’t unlocked the phone yet, but there are still more things to discuss: Gestures. You assign different letters different functions. If you draw that letter on the phone while it’s asleep it will perform the assigned action. Super handy.

    But let’s unlock the phone already! Everyone should find there way around the OS pretty easily, there are a couple of cool features, like being able to freely arrange your app icons and add widgets to the home screen. Yay… iOS has some stupid limitations. If we swipe to the right we find a place for widgets. I think that’s quite useless as I can put them on a home screen anyway so what’s the point? All the build in apps are easy to use, but there are less of those. No notes or reminder app for example. I don’t miss these apps as I use different apps anyways, but still iPhone users may wonder where those apps are. Another great thing is splitscreen. If you hold down the multitasking button you can enter multitasking. This mode is awesome and every phone should have this, right Apple?
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    But let’s get into the settings. You can customize a lot of things, but I don’t think as many things as with the One and Cyanogen, but it has been a long time for me since then so I could be wrong. One of the first things I wanted to change some keyboard settings. I want to be honest: all these options kind of intimated me at first and I didn’t want to read all of their descriptions, but I quickly grew to like this amount of customization.
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    First up is the alert slider, there are some options but not nearly enough. I want to change the order of the 3 functions and just have more control over each option. For me do not disturb is simply not what the 5T tries to sell me. Let me change exactly what this mode does and I would love the slider even more. One quick thing to add: I never had my iPhone on loud, but at home my 5T is in loud mode, because of the weak vibration motor. Some might think this is such a small thing, but that vibration motor really isn’t that good.

    Furthermore we can have parallel apps. This mean you can have for example two Instagram apps with different accounts, pretty awesome. But this feature is limited to specific apps, which is quite sad. I would love to have two (or more!) Steam Apps, but this feature in itself is awesome.

    I’m not going to go over all the options. There are a lot and that’s really cool.

    There is one thing that bothers me with android as a long time iOS user: the permission system. It’s not as organized and some apps refuse to run if you don’t give them location access, even though those apps have no reason to use it. But that’s probably an android problem and OnePlus can’t do much about that.
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    iOS and Android are different, but both are easy enough to use. I knew iOS limited what the iPhone could do, but the OnePlus shows there is no reason for these limitations. It would be hard for me to switch back to iOS now, and that’s a good sign.

    Overall android and OxygenOS have convinced me. Obviously there is always room to improve, but it’s a solid experience.

    So thanks for reading and I hope you join me tomorrow for day 7 for my conclusion. Was it a good decision to switch to android?

    Here is todays video:
     

    Attached Files:


    #6
    Crystal Z. likes this.
  7. Red-Pi
    Cupcake Dec 8, 2017

    Red-Pi , Dec 8, 2017 :
    Day 7 - Conclusion:
    It`s day 7 of the OnePlus 5T 7 Day Review Challenge. This means it is time for my conclusion. Was it the right decision to switch from my iPhone 6S to the OnePlus 5T?
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    I don’t know if 7 days are enough to get all the information to review a device. Maybe I will make another full review of the 5T when I had more time with it. For example I am still not sure what to think about the camera, I think it’s better than I thought at first, but a software update could improve it. The Oreo update could make this phone better, or even worse, so there is still enough to evaluate.

    But let’s not worry about that and get to the question: Will I keep the OnePlus 5T and sell my iPhone 6S? Yes, yes I will. Is the OnePlus 5T perfect? No. Can you really go wrong with any of the top phones? I don’t think so.

    For me the OnePlus was a chance to get a new experience. I grew tired of Apple, iOS and their marketing focused products.
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    Most things have been covered in the last days, so I don’t want to go into detail about the phone in this conclusion. The OnePlus 5T is a great phone and won’t disappoint you. The design is gorgeous especially if you are into metal phones (or simply don’t like these glass backs like me). It doesn’t feel perfect in the hand. The edge on the side is quite harsh and the iPhone has a nicer, softer feeling metal body. But the Sandstone case is one of the few cases that is allowed to stay on my phone, due to the interesting texture.
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    The single bottom firing speaker is substantially louder than the iPhone, but dual front facing speaker would be better. The display is fantastic, the colours look nice, we have a lot more contrast than on the iPhone and the rounded edges on the display add a nice touch.
    Call quality is fine, the fingerprint scanner at the back is a step up from a front mounted solution. The phone unlocks extremely quickly and feels even quicker in everyday use. The battery life is fantastic.
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    I still don’t get the basically identical second camera, but to each his own. The rear camera is a capable camera especially in pro mode. Most people will be happy with the camera, I just want the best camera results and I won’t get them with any smartphone.
    I still think the front camera suffers from OnePlus’ post processing. Just patch in an option to turn of the beauty effect I think this camera is going to be okay as well.
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    OxygenOS and Android are amazing, well except for Googles emojis. All messaging apps use different emojis and that’s a good thing. The customization is something I appreciate as a long time iOS user. There are just two things I miss: force touch on the keyboard to move the cursor and a truly easy way to share my calendar with my girlfriend (with notification when she changes something in the calendar). Other than that my experience was satisfactory.

    So let's make finish this with a short list of pros and cons.

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    Hopefully my review was helpful to you and to OnePlus. OnePlus hosts this challenge to learn and improve their products and that’s awesome.

    The OnePlus 5T is an amazing phone.


    Thanks for reading and thanks for everyone that watched my videos and followed my entry.

    • Red-Pi
    Here is my final video for this challenge:
     

    Attached Files:


    #7