The OnePlus 9 may seem like a less attractive phone considering everything the Pro model has to offer, but don’t be fooled by appearances. Because it is true that there are differences and some may be important depending on what type of users, but still it is a device that has a lot to offer at a very attractive price.
The very essence of the OnePlus 9 Pro
The design of the OnePlus 9 is practically the same as the Pro model with some other differences that also imply the loss of some characteristics that, perhaps, could make it look less interesting. However, let’s review the most important aspects of the product’s aesthetics.
On a physical level it is very beautiful, with a very elegant rear and where that camera module with the Hasselblad logo is what attracts the most attention. Although if you have the opportunity to see both devices at the same time, the most striking thing between the normal and Pro model is on the front. We put aside the curved panel to go on to use a flat one that will surely attract many more, the problem is that with the change not only resolution is lost but also the LPTO technology that allows managing the refresh rate in a very smartest. Although I’ll talk to you about the screen itself later.
Otherwise, the product looks very good despite the fact that the frames also make use of a less noble material on this occasion. Instead of the aluminum in the 9 Pro we have a plastic material that still feels great in hand. What’s more, you would have to be very meticulous to notice it, because the feeling in the hand is very good.
From the rest of the details, what I have always liked about OnePlus is that they keep the Alert Slider , a button that with three positions allows you to activate the sounds, only the vibration or the silent mode quickly. It may seem unnecessary knowing that from the quick settings, available when we get the Android notifications, it can also be done. But with the phone, for example, in a pocket it is much faster to do it from the button.
Without a doubt, everything related to design is something very personal, but the OnePlus 9 is a device that is physically very attractive to practically anyone who sees it.
A screen and sound to match, but inferior to the Pro
It is impossible not to compare the Pro model with this OnePlus 9 when there is any provision, but that does not have to lead us to think that having certain limitations makes it worse. This time the OnePlus 9 screen offers a lower resolution , becoming FHD + instead of QHD +. Of course, the main difference may be that despite offering 120Hz of refreshment, it does not offer that intelligent management that LTPO technology allows and that the 9 Pro panel does have.
Still, the screen looks good in all kinds of scenarios. So the viewing of content such as YouTube videos, photos, etc., is done properly. To which we must add the color settings offered by the operating system, which does offer advanced parameters when choosing color profiles, etc.
Of the sound I have to admit that I cannot say much more than it is correct. The speaker capacity that this OnePlus 9 includes is solvent for most of the uses and needs that users really require today.
However, do not expect anything from the other world, because when you go up to certain levels you can see that the sound lacks a bit of body. It is not worrying or the worst in the industry, but if you want to enjoy higher quality, you better opt for external headphones.
Fast charging as a benefit
Fast charging systems are no longer as surprising as they were a few years ago, but the improvements that some brands continue to implement make them increasingly efficient. In the case of OnePlus and for this new generation, the most striking thing is the increase in cable load that reaches 65W .
The OnePlus 9 charges by cable at the same speed as the Pro model, but when charging wirelessly it is limited to 15W instead of the Pro’s 50W. Is this a problem? Well, the truth is that no, it is something that is noticeable if you even had the opportunity to try the highest-end model, but on a daily basis it is a lesser evil that you can live with.
So what you are interested in knowing is that the autonomy of the phone allows you to use it without problem for a day or a day and a half. And if you use it very intensively, the fast charge will compensate you.
Performance and fluidity, the great value of OnePlus
So far everything could seem very normal, since there are already many devices on the market that offer all this, but when we get to the performance section, things change. With a high-end hardware where the Snapdragon 888 governs two configuration of RAM (8 and 12 GB) and another two of storage (128/256 GB) the user experience can be classified as unique.
OxygenOS offers great performance at all times and as you discover small details that it offers, it is very enjoyable. But without a doubt it is the fluidity that is achieved in all kinds of uses, from the use of the operating system to the apps that install them, is one of the great attractions of the device.
The Hasselblad seal on their chambers
As with the OnePlus 9 Pro, the cameras on this OnePlus 9 again are signed by Hasselblad . Of course, the work of the iconic photography brand is based only on the calibration of the sensor. For the rest, it can be said that on this occasion and as a “lower” model, the configuration at the sensor level is basically the same as the OnePlus 8T.
Is this negative? Well no, the performance is quite good in all kinds of situations, although in low light it may suffer a bit more. The good news is that you are getting frequent system updates with camera enhancements.
In my tests, the only thing that I have noticed is that for some types of photographs I have missed the telephoto lens of the Pro model. But if you are not that type of photos, the angle and wide angle allow very interesting things. What’s more, you can even zoom up to 2X by cropping on the main sensor itself.
From the same video, OnePlus offers in this OnePlus 9 the possibility of recording video at 8K resolution at 30p for the first time. It is not something super necessary, but if that later implies improvements in 4K video capture, then go ahead.
Personally, the OnePlus 9 camera seems good to me and reminds me of Apple’s strategy with its iPhone 12 and 12 Pro. That is, it is a camera that dispenses with the telephoto lens and is still capable of achieving results that with a little of patience, knowing how to take advantage of options such as the Pro mode and containing the technique can be of great quality.
OnePlus 9 or OnePlus 9 Pro?
With all this you may wonder which model is more interesting, the 9 or 9 Pro. Well, if they gave me a choice and money was not a problem, logically the OnePlus 9 Pro is a better terminal. However, I think I would go so far as to say that the smart buy is the OnePlus 9 .
The device sacrifices certain features when it comes to hardware, but it covers the main aspects very well. That is to say, the performance is outstanding and without a doubt one of the best user experiences that you can find in an Android terminal today. The screen is not that Pro, but it looks very good and on a day-to-day basis you will not really notice or miss anything that the superior model offers. And the cameras unless you take a lot of photos with the zoom, it also allows great quality captures.
Therefore, and returning to the comparison with Apple phones, the OnePlus 9 would be like the iPhone 12. A terminal that has some differences with respect to the Pro model, but for 709 euros it is much more attractive for those looking for a capable high-end to offer a great user experience in all kinds of scenarios and use cases.