OnePlus Nord 3 5G Review: Nailing the Mid-Range Game

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OnePlus Nord 3 Review Summary

Design

Display

Performance

Battery

Camera

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Pros

  • Attractive design
  • Good display
  • 80W fast charging
  • Reliable everyday performance

Cons

  • Average macro lens
  • No audio jack

In a bid to carve its own niche in the ever-shrinking global smartphone market, OnePlus introduced the Nord Series couple of years back. Ever since its introduction OnePlus has done well in the Aforedable segment: Now OnePlus Nord 3 5G has arrived. Packed with premium features, this device aims to deliver a top-notch experience without breaking the bank. Boasting a formidable Dimensity 9000 chipset, a cutting-edge Sony IMX890 camera sensor, and more, the OnePlus Nord 3 promises to impress. Not to mention, its stunning display and lightning-fast charging capabilities aiming to win more hearts for the brand. With a starting price of Rs. 33,000 in India, the question remains: does this new Nord member truly justify its price tag? Let’s dive in and find out!

After using Nord 3 for a couple of weeks, we are sharing our experience in the form of a review. It includes the performance of the smartphone in everyday tasks, its design, battery, and more.

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OnePlus Nord 3 Price & Availability

OnePlus Nord 3 has been launched in India in 2 storage models. The beige and green color variants have a leather finish whereas the black color model has a glittery glossy finish for the rear panel.

  • 8GB RAM+128GB storage- Rs. 33,999
  • 16GB RAM+256GB storage- Rs. 37,999

OnePlus Nord 3 Specifications

Model Name OnePlus Nord 3
Software Android 13 + OxygenOS 13
Display6.74-FHD+ AMOLED; 120Hz refresh rate; 1450 nits brightness
ChipsetMediaTek Dimensity 9000
RAM8GB / 16GB
Storage256GB
Rear Camera50MP+8MP+2MP
Front Camera16MP
Battery5000mAh
Charging80W
Dimensions162.6 x 75.1 x 8.2 mm
Weight191.5 grams
Connectivity5G SA/NSA, 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth 5.2, dual-band WiFi 6, dual-frequency GPS, USB Type-C audio, Type-C Port, Dual SIM Slot, in-display fingerprint sensor

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Unboxing

OnePlus Nord 3 comes in a black colored box. It has the name of the smartphone and OnePlus branding on the top and on the side, while the back has key information about the device. Opening the box will reveal an even smaller box that has a cover and some important documents. Underneath it is the handset. The black cardboard box contains-

  • OnePlus Nord 3 handset
  • USB Type-C cable
  • SIM Ejector Tool
  • Quick guide
  • Safety guide
  • Protective cover
  • 80W adapter

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Design

OnePlus Nord 3 is a good smartphone that doesn’t feel weird or heavy when held in hand. We received the Misty Green shade that looks quite premium. The rear panel comes with a glass finish, while the frame has a matte finish in the same color. Although the device looks attractive it is equally difficult to to stop from slipping away. OnePlus has provided a protective cover inside the box that too is made in the same color as the device. Putting this cover on makes sure that the smartphone doesn’t slip and still looks pretty stylish.

This time OnePlus has provided its alert slider in this mid-range device. The alert slider can be found alongside the power button on the right edge. The left edge houses volume rockers. The buttons on both sides can easily be reached with one hand. The edges are slightly curved which makes the hand grip better and doesn’t poke when held for long durations. With the cover on, the grip becomes even better.

The rear panel of the device has two big circular cutouts, out of which one houses the primary sensor and one houses the other two camera sensors. In front of these cutouts are an LED flash and color temperature light. The OnePlus branding sits right in the middle of the rear panel. The bottom edge consists of a speaker grille, a Type-C port for charging, a microphone, and SIM Tray. At the top edge is a secondary microphone and an IR Blaster.

On the front, there is a flat screen accompanied by minimal bezels that are barely noticeable. Surprisingly, the bezels on the chin measure 2.31mm, while the other three sides boast 1.46mm bezels, creating a sleek and symmetrical appearance. Positioned neatly in the middle of the display is a punch-hole camera, which adds to the phone’s modern aesthetic. Notably, the touch response of the display is incredibly quick, enhancing the overall usability and navigation experience.

Overall the design of the OnePlus Nord 3 is quite premium for a mid-ranger. It is stylish as well and comes with a good in-hand feel. The smartphone weighs under 200 grams and comes with Gorilla Glass Protection for the display. It is IP54 rated as well.

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Display

OnePlus Nord 3’s display is a 6.74-inch Fluid AMOLED panel that truly impresses. With its 2772×1240 pixel resolution and 120Hz refresh rate, the screen delivers smooth and fluid visuals. What’s even better is the adaptive nature of the refresh rate, offering five levels of adjustment ranging from 40Hz to an impressive 120Hz. Whether you’re scrolling through your social media feed or playing games, the high refresh rate ensures a seamless experience. Additionally, the display’s peak brightness is excellent as it is visible in bright outdoor environments. To reduce eye strain, the Nord 3 employs 1440Hz High-Frequency PWsM dimming, making it a comfortable choice for prolonged usage.

OnePlus Nord 3 display review

When it comes to color profiles, the Nord 3 offers four options, with two available in Pro Mode. The Natural Mode is a delight for the eyes, delivering soothing and accurate colors. For those seeking more vibrant hues, the Vivid mode strikes a balance without going overboard. And if you’re looking for even brighter and more distinctive color options, the Pro mode presents the choice between Cinematic or Brilliant Profiles.

Thanks to HDR10 support, the OnePlus Nord 3 ensures an enjoyable content consumption experience. Whether you’re streaming your favorite shows on Netflix or indulging in multimedia content, the colors and viewing angles are commendable, providing immersive visuals that bring your content to life.

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Performance

OnePlus Nord 3 is powered by Octa-core MediaTek Dimensity 9000 chipset that is based on a 4nm manufacturing process. In terms of chipset, the Nord series smartphone has received a good upgrade. Last year, OnePlus Nord 2T had a Dimensity 1300 chipset that was based on a 6nm manufacturing process. OnePlus Nord 3 comes with 8GB and 16GB RAM options along with 256GB onboard storage.

We used this device as the primary handset and tasks like app usage, calling, social media browsing, gaming, video streaming, and listening to music were smooth. The smartphone has LPDDR5X RAM and UFS 3.1 storage which enhance the performance of the device even more. In terms of gaming, there were no lags felt. We gamed for around half an hour, during which there were no frame rate drops. However, after a point when stress increases, then frames start dropping by one or two.

In comparison to Nord 2T, this one has a 4129mm2 vapor chamber cooling system that makes sure the device doesn’t heat up easily. During our usage, the temperature of the device was normal, but during the benchmarking tests, it did warm up. Keeping the summer heat in mind, this feels obvious.

Given below are some benchmark test scores-

Talking about software, OnePlus Nord 3 runs Oxygen OS 13 based on Android 13. Oxygen OS gives an experience similar to ColorOS. For me, it was slightly different as I use MIUI otherwise. However, it didn’t take much time to adopt the OxygenOS and the usage is very simple. There is no bloatware which is the best part about this UI.

Just like Realme and Oppo smartphones, there is a split screen, flexible windows, quick launch, and quick return features. When you create a OnePlus account, you get O-Relax, O-Haptics, and Omoji-like features. O-Relax lets you have silent notifications and play games, while O-Haptics allows you to adjust the sound of haptics accordingly. Omoji allows you to create emojis for yourself.

Coming to audio performance, there is a stereo speaker at the bottom and a small speaker at the top. The sound is loud when a video is played and the audio is clearly audible. While calling, the receiver works well. All-in-all the audio performance is decent.

The Face Unlock and Fingerprint sensors on the OnePlus Nord 3 work like a charm, allowing us to unlock the phone in the blink of an eye.

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Camera

OnePlus Nord 3 comes with the same primary camera as the OnePlus 11. There is a 50MP Sony IMX890 main sensor with OIS. In good daylight, the sensor clicks good pictures. In the photographs, colors are accurate. There is loads of detailing and the dynamic range is decent as well.

Along with the primary sensor, there is an 8MP ultrawide Sony IMX355 sensor. In comparison to the primary camera, the colors in pictures taken via an ultrawide lens are different. It makes green look greener. Detailing is just about ok but very less than what is found in primary camera shots. In night shots taken through the ultrawide lens, there is noise as well.

Nord 3 has a 2MP macro lens as well. There is no detailing in its shots, but the colors are ok.

macro shot

OnePlus Nord 3 features a 16MP selfie camera at the front. It clicks good shots when the light is good. The detailing lessens when the light is dim, but this is hardly noticeable as shots are clear and precise. The best part about the selfie lens is that it doesn’t change the natural look of your face. For those who want to change things a bit, there are in-built filters that can be used to modify skin tone, eyes, nose, chin, and more. You can see this in the picture below.

Apart from this, the device can record 4K videos at 60fps. There is a tripod mode and a steady mode as well.

OnePlus Nord 3 Review: Battery

OnePlus Nord 3 packs a 5000mAh battery under the hood. The smartphone comes with 80W wired fast charging support and the 80W charger is bundled inside the box. The charger takes about 35 minutes to charge to 100% and 15 minutes to charge to 55%. Battery life is decent as well. Calling, testing, social media, gaming and more brought down the battery life to around 30% at the end of the day which is good. We used the device with a refresh rate on Auto Mode, so if you switch it to 120Hz then the battery might drain slightly faster.

Battery features include High-Performance Mode, Optimize Battery Use, Sleep Standby Optimization, Wise charging, and more. Battery Optimization allows the battery to last longer.

OnePlus Nord 3 Review Verdict: Should you buy it?

n conclusion, the OnePlus Nord 3 is a standout device that combines impressive performance and a stylish design, all at an affordable price of 35,000. Its powerful Dimensity 9000 chipset ensures smooth multitasking and gaming, surpassing expectations for its price range. However, the secondary camera falls short compared to the primary camera’s performance.

While the OnePlus brand carries better brand value compared to Realme, iQOO, and Xiaomi, it is worth noting that the Realme 11 Pro+ offers a similar experience at a slightly lower price point. Ultimately, the choice between the OnePlus Nord 3 and its competitors will depend on individual preferences and priorities.

Reasons to Buy

  • Attractive design
  • Good display
  • 80W fast charging
  • Fast Performance

Reasons to Not Buy

  • Average macro lens
  • No audio jack
Shivangi AgarwalShivangi Agarwal
Shivangi is an honours graduate in English from Delhi University with a passion for reading and writing. Always keen to know more about the latest gadgets, when she is not reading about tech, she loves listening to Hindi music and grooving to the latest Hindi beats.

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1 Comment
Sathish Mechy
Sathish Mechy
@sathish_mechy
11 months ago

Awesome work!

Reply