Oppo maintains its sharp focus with R9s smartphone


By Paisal Chuenprasaeng

With the R9s phone, you’re guaranteed great pictures from both front and back

WITH 16-megapixel cameras both fore and aft, the new R9s phone from Oppo is ideal for folks who like taking pictures as much as making calls.

The decent resolution front and rear is abetted by a fast lens and advanced auto-focusing on the main camera. Trying the phone out in the newsroom, I got some terrific shots with both cameras.

This shouldn’t be a surprise, since Oppo has positioned itself as a top manufacturer of camera phones.

The secret to the high standards of the R9s main camera, it says, is the image sensor and a very bright and fast lens.

That would be the all-new Sony IMX398 sensor, which Oppo explains is a customised 1/2.8-inch sensor the two firms developed jointly. The lens aperture is a wide f/1.7, so you get 40 per cent more light than with Oppo’s previous flagship model, and thus good images in low light, with minimum noise.

Oppo R9s

I was able to capture some beautiful lights at night and nice road scenes with the streams of car headlights and taillights.

Dual PDAF (phase detection auto-focus) technology represents another upgrade in standards, in fact doubling the area of the sensor’s pixel array equipped with the photodiodes needed for auto-focus. I found it to be very fast indeed.

The front camera has a 16MP sensor and f/2.0-aperture lens and uses Oppo’s Screen Flash for impressive selfies in any lighting situation. And you have Beauty mode to brighten and smooth facial skin. In fact I got terrific selfies in both Auto and Beauty modes.

The R9s has a nice stylish look to it, especially the Rose Gold model. The 6.58mm body is 98.9 per cent metal and the screen-to-body ratio is nearly 73 per cent. The edges curve softly both front and back.

The phone’s thinness allows for two triplets of ultra-fine antenna lines – three at the top and three at the bottom. These six lines, a mere 0.3mm in diameter each, replace the thick white bands found at the back of most smartphones. The design gives you six frequency ranges for 4G and Wi-Fi signals.

I tested the R9s’ connectivity at 802.11ac 5GHz Wi-Fi with Lnksys EA8500 router and got hooked up fast, ready to share files with other devices.

Sampling the 4G connection, I noticed impressive speed on TrueMove H’s LTE network, both in connecting and in downloading apps and backing up pictures to the Google Photos cloud. The Ookla Speedtest app measured downloads at 63.11Mbps and uploads at 31.88Mbps.

With Oppo focusing on camera quality, the R9s doesn’t have a massive mobile processor. But the Qualcomm MSM8953 Snapdragon 625 octa-core processor running at 2GHz certainly gets the job done, backed by four gigabytes of working memory and 64GB of expandable on-board storage. Note that the slot for a microSD card is the same one needed for a second nano SIM.

During my test I didn’t feel that R9s was slow at all. Most applications and video clips ran smoothly and the touch screen was responsive. The phone runs on Oppo’s ColourOS 3.0, which is based on Google Android 6.0. The user interface is lovely and intuitive.

The 5.5-inch Amoled display with Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) is nice-looking too, and very good for viewing photos and HD videos. Tough Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protects the display.

Another feature I love about the R9s is its capacity to play High-Resolution Audio files smoothly with good sound quality. I tried it with Sony MDR-1ABT headphones and the music quality was truly impressive, with crisp details and powerful bass.

The phone has a fingerprint reader embedded in the home button that worked effectively for me in unlocking the device. You can use your fingerprint to lock away your private files as well.

The 3,010mAh battery uses Oppo’s own VOOC Flash Charge – a five-minute charge will give you two hours’ talking time.

The Oppo R9s has a suggested retail price of Bt14,990.

Key Specs

– Operating system: ColourOS 3.0 based on Android 6.0

– Networks: 2G GSM: 850/900/1800/1900MHz, 3G WCDMA: 850/900/1900/2100MHz, 4G LTE Bands 1/3/5/7/8/20/28/, TD-38/39/40/41

– CPU: Qualcomm MSM8953 Snapdragon 625 Octa-core 2GHz

– GPU: Adreno 506

– Memory: 4GB RAM

– Storage: 64GB (use microSD card to boost up to 256GB)

– Display: 5.5-inch Amoled touchscreen with 1,920 x 1,080 pixels behind Gorilla Glass 5

– Cameras: Main 16MP with f/1.7 lens 4K video recording, front 16MP with f/2.0 lens

– SIM: Dual nano-SIM slots

– Connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, 2.4GHz, 5GHz, Bluetooth 4.1

– Sensors: Distance, light, |g-sensor, e-compass, gyroscope

– Battery: 3010mAh (typical) |li-po, cannot be removed

– Dimensions: 153×74.3×6.58mm

– Weight: 147 grams


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