The third head of the BBK smartphone business, along with the first two — OPPO and Vivo — continues its measured speech, steadily releasing two «flagship killers» a year. Following the summer OnePlus 6, the OnePlus 6T went on sale in late autumn. It is not officially supplied to Russia, but no one can prevent us from writing material about it, just like you — to buy it
The T-version of the next OnePlus has always made the summer «numbered» pointless — but not this year. There are, as always, many differences between them, but not all of them even seem positive. For example, the mini-jack disappeared — the fashion came to OnePlus, while there was no compensation in the form of the declared moisture protection. Or, say, the fingerprint scanner has moved from the back to the display — yes, now it’s convenient to unlock it with one hand without lifting it from the table, but questions immediately arise about the speed of unlocking. The cutout in the middle of the status bar has turned into a “droplet”, but is it such a virtue?
At the same time, neither the camera nor, of course, the hardware platform has changed. So how can OnePlus 6T hook its potential audience this time — people looking at the flagships of A-brands, but ready to part with only half the required amount? Does it stand up to fierce competition with Xiaomi Mi 8 on the one hand or cheaper Huawei P20/P20 Pro on the other? Previously, OnePlus successfully got out of this double press, but perhaps at the beginning of 2019, even fans of the brand should prefer a more inexpensive “six”? We will try to answer these questions in the review.
The OnePlus 6T costs $37,990 to $420 in the Phonempire store today, depending on the amount of memory.
|OnePlus 6T||One Plus 6||Xiaomi Mi 8||Huawei P20 Pro||Oppo RX17 Pro|
2340 × 1080 dots, 402 ppi, capacitive multi-touch
2280 × 1080 dots, 402 ppi, capacitive multi-touch
|6.21 inches, AMOLED, 2246 × 1080 pixels, 402 ppi, capacitive multi-touch||6.1″ OLED
2240 × 1080 dots, 408 ppi, capacitive multi-touch
2340 × 1080 dots, 401 ppi, capacitive multi-touch
|Protective glass||Corning Gorilla Glass 6||Corning Gorilla Glass 5||Corning Gorilla Glass 5||No information||Corning Gorilla Glass 6|
|CPU||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845: Quad-core Kryo 385 Gold @ 2.8GHz + Quad-core Kryo 385 Silver @ 1.7GHz||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845: Quad-core Kryo 385 Gold @ 2.8GHz + Quad-core Kryo 385 Silver @ 1.7GHz||Qualcomm Snapdragon 845: Quad-core Kryo 385 Gold @ 2.8GHz + Quad-core Kryo 385 Silver @ 1.7GHz||HiSilicon Kirin 970: four ARM Cortex A73 cores, 2.4GHz + four ARM Cortex A53 cores, 1.8GHz; HiAI architecture||Qualcomm Snapdragon 710: two Kryo 360 Gold cores, 2.2 GHz + six Kryo 360 Silver cores, 1.7 GHz|
|Graphics controller||Adreno 630, 710 MHz||Adreno 630, 710 MHz||Adreno 630, 710 MHz||ARM Mali-G72 MP12, 850 MHz||Adreno 616, 750 MHz|
|RAM||6/8/10 GB||6/8 GB||6 GB||6 GB||6 GB|
|Flash memory||128/256 GB||64/128/256 GB||64/128/256 GB||128 GB||128 GB|
|Memory card support||No||No||No||No||There is|
|Connectors||USB Type-C||USB Type-C, mini jack 3.5 mm||USB Type-C||USB Type-C||USB Type-C|
|SIM cards||Two nano-SIMs||Two nano-SIMs||Two nano-SIMs||Two nano-SIMs||Two nano-SIMs|
|Cellular 2G||GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz CDMA 800/1900||GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz CDMA 800/1900||GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz||GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz||GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz|
|Cellular 3G||HSDPA 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1800 / 1900 / 2100 MHz||HSDPA 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 MHz||UMTS 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100||HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 MHz||WCDMA 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100 MHz|
|Cellular 4G||LTE Cat.16 (up to 1024 Mbps): bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32 , 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 46, 66, 71||LTE Cat.16 (up to 1024 Mbps): bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34 , 38, 39, 40, 41, 66, 70||LTE Cat. 16 (up to 1024 Mbps): bands 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 20, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41||LTE Cat. 18 (up to 1200 Mbps), bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 17, 18, 19, 20, 26, 28, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41||LTE Cat.15 (up to 800 Mbps): bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 32, 34, 38, 39 , 40, 41|
|Bluetooth||5.0||5.0||5.0||4.2 (aptX HD)||5.0|
|NFC||There is||There is||There is||There is||There is|
|Navigation||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou||GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo|
|Sensors||Illumination, proximity, accelerometer/gyroscope, magnetometer (digital compass)||Illumination, proximity, accelerometer/gyroscope, magnetometer (digital compass)||Illumination, proximity, accelerometer/gyroscope, magnetometer (digital compass)||Light, proximity, accelerometer/gyroscope, magnetometer (digital compass), IR sensor||Illumination, proximity, accelerometer/gyroscope, magnetometer (digital compass)|
|The fingerprint scanner||Yes, on screen||There is||There is||There is||Yes, on screen|
|Main camera||Dual module, 16 + 20 MP, ƒ / 1.7 + ƒ / 1.7, hybrid autofocus, dual LED flash||Dual module, 16 + 20 MP, ƒ / 1.7 + ƒ / 1.7, hybrid autofocus, dual LED flash||Dual module: 12 MP, ƒ / 1.8 + 12 MP, ƒ / 2.4, phase detection autofocus, optical stabilization (with main camera)||Triple module, 40 + 20 + 8 MP, ƒ / 1.8 + ƒ / 1.6 + ƒ / 2.4, hybrid autofocus, optical stabilization, dual LED flash||Dual module, 12 + 20 MP, ƒ / 1.5-2.4 + ƒ / 2.6, phase detection autofocus, optical stabilization, LED flash|
|Front-camera||16 MP, ƒ/2.0, fixed focus||16 MP, ƒ/2.0, fixed focus||20 MP, ƒ/2.0, fixed focus||24 MP, ƒ/2.0, fixed focus, no flash||25 MP, ƒ/2.0, fixed focus, no flash|
|Nutrition||Non-removable battery: 14.06 Wh (3700 mAh, 3.8 V)||Non-removable battery: 12.54 Wh (3300 mAh, 3.8 V)||Non-removable battery: 12.92 Wh (3400 mAh, 3.8 V)||Non-removable battery: 15.2 Wh (4000 mAh, 3.8 V)||Non-removable battery: 14.06 Wh (3700 mAh, 3.8 V)|
|Weight||185 grams||177 grams||175 grams||180 grams||183 grams|
|Operating system||Android 9.0 Pie, OxygenOS shell||Android 8.1 Oreo, OxygenOS skin||Android 8.1.0 Oreo, MIUI shell||Android 8.0 Oreo, EMUI shell||Android 8.1 Oreo, ColorOS shell|
|Current price||$320 for 6/128 GB version, $320 for 8/128 GB version, $420 for 8/256 GB version||$320 for 6/64GB version, $320 for 8/128GB version, $420 for 8/256GB version||$220 for 6/64GB version, $220 for 6/128GB version, $220 for 6/256GB version||420$||420$|
⇡#Appearance, ergonomics and software
OnePlus 6T is one of the instigators of the «who has the smallest notch» social competition. So that instead of «monobrow» — «droplet». Many note this framing of a lonely front camera as perhaps the main advantage of the 6T — they say, unlike the huge cutouts of the iPhone. Yes, indeed, such a solution takes up less space for information on the status bar — there are no problems in fitting the charge percentage and even the network speed there. But as for the visual impression — the question is more than controversial. And there’s no need to talk about OnePlus’ innovation – the summer BQ Universe can boast of such a solution. Have you heard of such a smartphone? Is it because you carefully read 3DNews.
The rest of the OnePlus 6T is very similar to the «six» — with some amendments. Firstly, almost all smartphones in a standard form factor (without a slider mechanism or two screens) are similar to each other. Secondly, the back is glass again, but not glossy, but matte — it looks easy to mistake it for metal, but the difference is obvious to the touch. Tactilely, it is much more pleasant, and it looks great with these light highlights. And the layout, minus the fingerprint scanner (it, again, moved to the screen), is the same, with a slightly protruding dual camera in the center.
There is, however, a glossy version — also black, like the one that we tested. From the back, it is almost indistinguishable from the OnePlus 6. No other colors are provided, betting on the still most popular classic.
OnePlus 6T received a slightly larger display (6.41 inches instead of 6.28) and a more capacious battery (3700 mAh vs. — 8.2 mm, companies are no longer chasing the ultimate thinness of the case, minimal bezels around the display are in fashion), but narrower. In any case, we are talking about a gadget with a display diagonal of almost 6.5 inches. It’s a lot. Despite the almost missing bezels, the phone is large and cannot be operated with one hand.
In terms of build quality, there are almost no questions. Almost — because the glass is not glued into the front panel too neatly, there are rather sharp edges. Of course, you can’t cut yourself on them, but it’s a little unpleasant to the touch.
This glass, by the way, is tempered, Corning Gorilla Glass 6. The back is probably also made of tempered glass, but its specifications are not disclosed.
Functional elements duplicate what we are already used to seeing on OnePlus — the power and volume keys are on different edges, in place and a distinctive sign, an analog sound mode switch. Of the deviations from the classics — the lack of a mini-jack.
The OnePlus 6T has two main user identification tools — face recognition and a fingerprint scanner. Both are implemented at a decent level. Again, the speed and clarity of the face recognition system are pleasing — despite the fact that OnePlus does not have a special sensor or at least IR illumination, only the front camera is used. This method does not provide adequate reliability (you can fool the system with a simple photo), but it works even in low light levels — there is enough light emitted by the screen.
Not bad and built into the screen optical fingerprint sensor. At least in terms of speed and accuracy, I liked it more than the one that, for example, Huawei uses in its latest smartphones (Huawei Mate 20 Pro, Honor Magic2). But Vivo NEX is quite comparable in terms of the quality of the scanner. Companies belonging to the same concern may well exchange successful technologies. But on the OnePlus 6T, I liked the location of the scanner less — too close to the bottom edge, which is why the smartphone needs to be slightly intercepted in the palm of your hand. This is fraught with the risk of dropping the gadget.
OnePlus 6T out of the box runs Android 9.0 Pie — with the Oxygen shell (current version 9.0). This is one of the most unobtrusive fronts for the Google operating system, adding to it only a few rewritten basic applications, a couple of branded services (along with the One Community forum platform, a tool for quickly transferring data from one OnePlus to another) and a custom Never Settle platform occupying the far left screen instead of Google Now. Well, extended options for managing the interface have been added — your own themes (very flexible and attractive), wallpapers. Gestures, keys, navigation tricks — everything is typical for Android 9.0 Pie.
It works very quickly and stably — in two weeks of testing, I did not catch a single serious error (only a couple of freezes in specific applications).
⇡#Display and sound
The OnePlus 6T has a new display — larger (6.41 inches), with a different aspect ratio (approximately 19.5: 9), but still with Full HD resolution. Here — 2340 × 1080 points. The pixel density is standard, 402 ppi. It is enough that during normal work you do not notice the pixelation of fonts and do not feel a lack of resolution when watching a video. There are no problems with viewing angles — even when viewed from a large angle, neither contrast nor color accuracy is lost.
Measured maximum white brightness is 466 cd/m2 — for an OLED display, an almost prohibitive level. Given conditionally infinite contrast ratio and the presence of a polarization layer on the screen, you will not experience problems with the perception of information in any environment. Even on a sunny day, you can not only read text on the OnePlus 6T, but also watch photos or videos without suffering from a faded picture.
For the OnePlus 6 display, you can choose several settings in the “screen calibration” section: either let the smartphone determine the color reproduction itself, or adjust the color temperature on its own, or choose a color space. I tested the 6T screen in default mode and sRGB space. Also among the settings you can find the “night” mode with a blue filter, which is already mandatory for a modern smartphone, but there is also a proprietary “reading mode”, in which the smartphone either always or when you start the selected applications will change the color rendition for the most comfortable reading, depending on external lighting — up to the introduction of black and white.
In the default calibration mode, the gamma fluctuates around the 2.26 mark, with a fairly stable behavior of the curves. The median temperature is 8000 K — the colors are displayed colder than expected, but not that much. The average deviation for the extended Color Checker palette (shades of gray + a wide range of color shades) is 5.88 with an upper limit of 3.00. The color gamut is close to DCI-P3. That’s a pretty good level of customization, offering a wide color gamut, if a bit chilly, that should still be to the taste of most users.
When set in the calibration settings according to the sRGB standard, we get the corresponding color space. The curves straighten out (although the gamma deviates further from the reference value of 2.2 and reaches 2.30), the color temperature is kept at an optimal level of 6,500 K, and the average Delta E value according to the Color Checker table is kept within the normal range of 2.86. The reference level (2.00) is not reached, but in any case, the quality of the OnePlus 6T’s factory-set display can safely be called excellent.
In OnePlus 6T, I repeat, there is no mini-jack — and in this case, this decision can be explained not only by the pursuit of fashion, but also by an attempt to make money on additional accessories. Included with the smartphone is only an adapter from USB Type-C to 3.5 mm jack, but the headphones are offered to be bought separately – now OnePlus also produces them. This is a wired model with a USB Type-C connector called Bullets and boasts a built-in digital-to-analog converter. It costs a little ($20), but, like the smartphone itself, it is not officially sold in Russia.
As for the sound quality of a smartphone with wired headphones from other manufacturers equipped with a classic analog connector, the 6T, like its predecessor, has nothing special to offer. The detail is average, the scene is not bad, but there is a general bias towards low frequencies, plus some muffled sound. For wireless sound transmission, the smartphone offers support for the aptX and aptX HD codecs, so the sound should be quite decent.
Approximately the same emotions are evoked by the main speaker — loud, but not sparkling with high sound quality. The speaker, as well as the microphones, is quite normal — making calls using the 6T is comfortable.
⇡#Hardware and performance
The main advantage of the first generations of OnePlus was the performance at the level of flagship A-brands at a much lower price. Formally, it has been preserved. Another thing is that there are also cheaper offers with Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 — Xiaomi Pocophone F1 or Xiaomi Mi 8, for example.
Yes, the OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition was released in December with 10 GB of RAM and fast charging, but in this case, it’s no longer necessary to talk about “budget”. OnePlus is trying to take its toll not with naked power, but with a set of parameters.
This, however, does not mean that there are any questions about the performance of the 6T. The still current Qualcomm flagship platform (four Kryo 385 Gold cores at 2.8 GHz, four Kryo 385 Silver cores at 1.7 GHz; Adreno 630 graphics subsystem at 710 MHz) provides high places in all synthetic tests and the ability to run any mobile games with maximum settings — and over the next couple of years, you won’t have to worry about possible problems in this regard.
RAM is also in order — the standard versions of OnePlus 6T have 6 or 8 GB LPDDR4X installed.
It’s nice that the OnePlus 6T copes with cooling very confidently. In the CPU Throttling Test benchmark, the average performance was 176 GIPS when the frequency was reduced to 88% of the maximum. Among smartphones with Snapdragon 845, this is one of the best results — of those gadgets that we managed to test (the first time throttling of mobile platforms began to be measured in 3DNews since August 2018), only Pocophone F1 performed better. At the same time, the central processor warms up to 61 degrees Celsius — yes, the smartphone noticeably warms up, but the situation does not reach a critical level.
I also tested the OnePlus 6T for neural network performance in the Ludashi AI Mark benchmark. So far, we have not accumulated a database, and this is more of an illustrative test, but you can compare it with Huawei Mate 20 Pro, in whose platform a serious bet on machine learning is made. The gap is very large, Kirin 980 is much more suitable for these purposes than Snapdragon 845. Snapdragon 855 will correct the situation, but for now we are talking about the previous generation of the platform.
There are three main versions of OnePlus 6T: with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of non-volatile memory, with 8 and 128 GB (as in our case) and with 8 and 256 GB. Well, the version of the McLaren Edition mentioned above is 10/256 GB. The slot for expanding memory using memory cards is traditionally missing for OnePlus.
Communications and wireless communications
In terms of the set and quality of wireless connections, OnePlus 6T is no different from the “six”. Two nano-SIM slots are accompanied by one radio module. Both slots support operation with LTE with a theoretically possible data rate of up to 1024 Mbps, and transmission — 150 Mbps (Cat.16/Cat.13). The coverage of the ranges is as wide as possible, there will be no connection problems not only in Russia, but also in the vast majority of countries in which 4G base stations are present at all.
The set of wireless modules is also standard: Bluetooth 5.0 (supporting aptX and aptX HD), dual-band Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n/ac), NFC. There is no IR port. The navigation module works with GPS (A-GPS), GLONASS, BeiDou, Galileo. It copes with its duties normally — it takes a couple of seconds to establish communication with satellites when the application starts, the location is tracked quite accurately.
The set of cameras has not changed at all in comparison with OnePlus 6: the main, 16-megapixel Sony IMX 519 sensor with an aperture lens is found here. ƒ/1.7 and an additional 20-megapixel Sony IMX376K with a lens with the same aperture.
Autofocus — hybrid, when using the main camera, a contrast method is used, on the additional (portrait) — phase. Moreover, it is clearly modified programmatically — the percentage of marriage has fallen significantly. If earlier it was necessary to do a couple of takes, regardless of the plot and lighting conditions, then the 6T almost always catches the sharpness on the first try. The optical image stabilizer on the main camera has also been preserved, thanks to which (in combination with a fast lens) you can take high-quality pictures in the dark.
The zoom, like on all OnePlus, starting from the fifth, is hybrid. The real focal length difference between the cameras is 1.5, while the software device offers a 2x zoom. There are noticeable losses in image quality, but it’s hard to say whether they are related to compression, or whether it’s the difference between the sensors. Although they are, of course, easily explained when shooting at night — the stabilizer does not work in this mode, which forces the camera to raise the ISO and, accordingly, sacrifice detail and fill the picture with noise.
The interface has not changed — the same minimalistic menu with switching between modes with a swipe. Night mode has been added to the set of portrait mode with software background blur, manual with a virtual horizon line, interval and slow motion video.
In it, the OnePlus 6T glues together several shots taken at different exposures, thereby achieving an even distribution of highlights and shadows in the frame. But it goes a little overboard with software enhancement of detail — this is the fault of the 6T software as a whole, but in this mode it is somehow quite pronounced.
OnePlus doesn’t make any sudden moves with its smartphone cameras, using the same circuitry across generations of devices in a row, but gradually improving them. Now these improvements have touched the software part — and have affected autofocus and the emerging night mode. However, since both of them “arrived” with updates on OnePlus 6, it’s not necessary to talk about the superiority of the 6T over its predecessor in terms of shooting quality – they have parity. But in comparison with direct competitors, the next OnePlus looks very confident. Of the shortcomings, it is worth noting only a mediocre dynamic range, too hard work on enhancing the contour sharpness (especially in night scenarios) and soft blurring of the background in portrait mode, which is slightly inferior to the level of A-brand smartphones. When compared with Xiaomi Mi 8, the OnePlus 6T photomodule should be recognized as the winner. Not to mention the Pocophone F1.
Video recording is carried out with a maximum resolution of 4K at a frequency of up to 60 frames per second. Electronic stabilization is available when shooting in Full HD resolution.
The front camera has not changed: 16-megapixel sensor (physical dimensions — 1 / 3.0 »), aperture lens ƒ/2.0. Autofocus and flash is not provided. Minimalism, which OnePlus adheres to in many areas, has also touched on the possibilities for taking self-portraits — there are no masks and animoji, and retouching is easily turned off by pressing a single icon. The quality of shooting for a selfie camera is very good.
Along with a larger display, the OnePlus 6T also received an increased capacity battery — up to 14.06 Wh (3700 mAh, 3.8 V). This is enough for the smartphone to live daylight hours at maximum load and more than a day with a measured, everyday load.
In our traditional HD video playback test, at maximum brightness, with Wi-Fi on, the OnePlus 6T lasted almost 16 hours on a single charge, improving on its predecessor’s already good performance.
OnePlus 6T is charged using a USB Type-C port — again USB 2.0 standard with a low data transfer rate. The kit includes a Dash Charge adapter that uses a voltage of 5 V and a current of 4 A. Up to 55% of the smartphone is charged in half an hour, and fully — in about one and a half. Just do not forget to buy an adapter for a European outlet.
Another OnePlus smartphone no longer looks like a holy grail for connoisseurs of maximum performance combined with savings. Ever since Xiaomi improved the shooting quality of their devices, and Huawei rushed into space in this parameter, the main advantage of this manufacturer’s smartphones, in fact, has become almost pure Android.
The OnePlus 6T doesn’t add any finishing touches to this picture — it’s a great smartphone with a glass but non-slip body (matte finish), a good camera, great performance and decent battery life. Another thing is that it really has a lot of compromises: there is no memory card slot, no mini-jack, no moisture protection, no support for wireless charging (if someone needs it). The competition among “flagship killers” today is too great to be content with the level at which OnePlus devices have been all these years – the familiar alternative today has many of its own alternatives.
- bright and superbly tuned AMOLED display;
- powerful platform;
- non-slip glass body (matte version);
- good (albeit not outstanding) quality of shooting both on the main and on the front camera;
- almost pure Android (there is a shell, but fast and unobtrusive).
- no moisture protection;
- no mini-jack;
- no slot for a memory card;
- USB 2.0;
- The price hasn’t been as good as it used to be.
For the OnePlus 6T smartphone provided for the test, we thank the phonempire store.