Oppo Reno 6 Pro 5G first impressions: Six months later, song remains the same

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Updated: July 21, 2021 7:46 PM

If anything, it makes phones like the Realme X7 Max/Realme X7 Pro and others stand out even more, as more value for money.

The Reno 6 Pro India price is Rs 39,999.

Oppo is launching the Reno 6 Pro 5G in India today. The new phone comes six months after the Reno 5 Pro 5G (which itself had come six months after the Reno 4 Pro). Contrary to the Reno 6 5G, which is also launching in India today, the Reno 6 Pro 5G is more than just another lifestyle product. It is a “pro” after all. It has a curved screen, better hardware, and a jacked-up price.

Next to the Reno 5 Pro however, the upgrades here are marginal. Iterative, if you will. You can count them on your fingers. Oppo has tweaked the design a bit, added a faster system-on-chip (and faster storage) and spruced up the battery ever so slightly. Let’s take a quick look at each of these upgrades one by one.

Oppo Reno 6 Pro hardware

The Reno 6 Pro has a MediaTek Dimensity 1200 SoC. The Reno 5 Pro came with a Dimensity 1000 Plus. Dimensity 1200 is MediaTek’s first 6nm chip. It is also the first MediaTek chip to use the Cortex-A78 core. It has a tri-cluster CPU with a “prime” A78 core running at 3.0GHz, three other A78 cores at 2.6GHz, and four A55 “efficiency” cores at 2.0GHz. Next to the Dimensity 1000 Plus, we’re looking at 22 percent faster performance. It can also do this while consuming up to 25 percent less power. Both chips pack the same Mali-G77 GPU though.

Oppo is using fast UFS 3.1 storage in the Reno 6 Pro, an improvement over UFS 2.1 inside the Reno 5 Pro. There is still no expandable storage.

The situation is somewhat reminiscent of the Realme X7 Max (Dimensity 1200) and Realme X7 Pro (Dimensity 1000 Plus). But while Realme is using a stainless-steel vapour cooling system inside the X7 Max to tame the beast, and it has also been able to do that successfully (you can read more about this in our full review here), Oppo says it is using a “multi-cooling” system in the Reno 6 Pro without sharing any technical details.

Heating and throttling have been two of the biggest pain points of next gen chipsets like the Dimensity 1200. Even the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 is not immune to this. OnePlus literally had to lower the performance of some very popular Android apps like Chrome on the OnePlus 9 Pro and OnePlus 9 in order to reduce power consumption though it chose to do that post launch – and after most of the reviews were out – through a software update and users can’t toggle that setting off so far. Geekbench has de-listed both the phones from its benchmark charts for OnePlus’ alleged “manipulation” tactics.

Fact of the matter is, not all Dimensity 1200/ Snapdragon 888-powered phones are created equal. It would be interesting to see how Oppo is handling this concern in the Reno 6 Pro. Strictly on the basis of core hardware though, the Reno 6 Pro is undeniably a step above the Reno 5 Pro. Whether or not it’s a step in the right direction is something that only time will tell.

Moving on, the Reno 6 Pro has a 4,500mAh battery. The Reno 5 Pro came with a smaller 4,350mAh battery.

As for design, here’s how the two phones stack up:

Oppo Reno 6 Price in India, Oppo Reno 6 Pro Full SpecsOppo Reno 6 Pro on the left, Reno 5 Pro on the right

Everything else about the Reno 6 Pro is more or less being carried forward from the Reno 5 Pro. It’s made of glass and has a 6.5-inch 1080p 90Hz curved AMOLED display with an optical in-display fingerprint scanner. It has a quad camera setup on the rear with a 64MP main, 8MP ultra-wide-angle (with a wider 120-degree field-of-view lens), and two 2MP cameras, one for macros and another for portrait photography.

Like a lot of its other phones, including the Reno 5 Pro, Oppo is again highlighting its video prowess here with an “industry first Bokeh Flare Portrait Video” and “cinematic bokeh flare effects in portraits” AI chops. Video recording on this phone caps out at 4k@30fps though. The Realme X7 Max with similar hardware can shoot at up to 4k@60fps. On the front, the Reno 6 Pro has a 32MP camera. This can shoot at up to 1080p@30fps only. Like the Reno 5 Pro, the Reno 6 Pro does not have a headphone jack/micro-SD card slot for storage expansion. There is only a mono speaker on this phone. Rounding off the package is 65W fast charging.

Oppo Reno 6 Pro final thoughts

The Reno 6 Pro India price is Rs 39,999. This is for the version with 12GB RAM and 256GB storage. An 8GB/128GB version of the Reno 5 Pro cost Rs 35,990 at launch. It’s an upgrade, yes, but as a Reno series phone, it does not do a lot to reinvent the wheel for Oppo. If anything, it makes phones like the Realme X7 Max/Realme X7 Pro and others stand out even more, as more value for money. Also, the vanilla Reno 6 5G is essentially the same phone with a watered-down Dimensity 900 chipset, 64MP triple rear camera system, and a smaller 4,300mAh battery at Rs 10,000 less (for a version with 8GB/128GB).

Just like a dozen Reno phones before it, the new “pro” Reno seems like a stop-gap before the next one comes along – at least on paper. That’s not bad or anything, but then again, I’d like to revisit this piece I did around the time that Oppo launched the Reno 5 Pro in India (you can read it here). As it turns out, six months later, the song still remains the same.

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