OnePlus 2 Review: Worth the hype?


oneplus 2 review

The OnePlus 2 launched on a sea of hype and to the trumpet call of “2016 Flagship Killer” but does the OnePlus 2 really deliver? Find out what we think in our full OnePlus 2 review.

If you cast your mind back to my OnePlus One review last year, you will know that I didn’t buy in to the hype and was overall disappointed with the device. Sure it was a good package, but with a lack luster camera, tall body and dodgy screen I felt much happier with the Vivo Xshot.

When the OnePlus marketing machine kicked off and started to promote the OnePlus 2 I didn’t get excited, the more I learned and saw the less interested I. So how do I feel now after a few weeks living with the OnePlus 2 as my daily driver?

OnePlus 2 Review: Design and build

oneplus 2 review

When we saw the early TENAA leaks of the OnePlus 2 I think we all had similar feelings. You either thought the design was ugly and OnePlus had finally lost the plot, OR the designs were fake. We quickly learned that those leaks were the real deal and the OnePlus 2 really does look like that, but its not really bad in the flesh.

It’s hard to put my feelings down in to words about the design of the OnePlus 2. It s certainly growing on me, but I’m at a loss as to how to describe it.

oneplus 2 review

The best I can come up with is that it looks very business like. To me it is almost like a high-tech briefcase in appearance. It has classic lines, and is made from the highest quality materials to the highest standards, but it’s still just a rectangle. It grabs peoples attention, no one ever says its a pretty, but it is very eye-catching.

oneplus 2 review

Out of the box the OnePlus 2 comes with a sandstone black Style Swap cover with a rough, almost sandpaper like finish. I like the sandstone finish, it feels great (everyone says so) and it doesn’t slip and slide about. However as much as I like the Sandstone, it isn’t a patch on the carbon cover.

oneplus 2 review

Switching to a carbon cover adds a little to the overall thickness of the phone, but at the same time it adds a beautiful feeling soft touch to the rear. I have to admit that with the carbon cover on I actually hold the OnePlus 2 a lot more than just sticking it in my pocket, simply because if feels gorgeous.

The rest of the materials are all top of the line too. The alloy chassis is engineered to a level that other Chinese phone makers haven’t yet reached and all the buttons and switches are just perfect. For example I never use the 3 position notification switch but the quality of the movement and knurled finish tempt me move it just to enjoy the movement and satisfying ‘click’.

oneplus 2 review

Compared to the OnePlus One the OPT is a more compact phone, which in itself is a great feature and worthy upgrade over the original. The bezels are slim without being uber thin, and the overall length has been reduced too.

OnePlus 2 Review: external features

So now you have an idea of what the quality is like what about the features on the outside of the phone?

oneplus 2 review

Well the front has a glass panel with 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080 display taking up most of the area while a slightly indented ‘button’ area acts as the fingerprint scanner and home button. In the images it might look like a physical button (similar to iPhone or Meizu) but it is just a capacitive button set into the body. Either side of the home button are menu and back capacitive buttons. They aren’t visible when not pressed and only a simple line lights up when you do press them.

oneplus 2 review

On the rear is the Style Swap cover that comes in carbon, bamboo and a few other options. It is removable to switch and to get to the dual nano SIM card tray.

oneplus 2 review

Aftermarket Style Swap covers also feature a couple of connections which are meant to inform the OnePlus 2 which cover is applied and then change the system’s theme to match. This doesn’t work on my phone and I don’t really care, but what I do wonder is if those same connections can be used to add NFC to the OP2 in the future?

oneplus 2 review

The rear also features that famous OnePlus logo, and just above that we have an alloy panel with the laser (for the laser focus), 13 mega-pixel OV camera and dual LED flash.

An alloy chassis makes up the center section of the phone. It has a grey or smoked finish to it that is very hard wearing. In the weeks that I have used my OnePlus 2 I have often placed it in the same place as loose change or keys and the chassis still look as good as new.

oneplus 2 review

Taking a look around the chassis we find dual speakers in the base either side of a USB 2.0 Type C plug, a 3 position notification switch on the left side, power and volume rocker on the right and 3.5mm headphone jack at the top.

OnePlus 2 Review: Hardware

I think we are all quite aware of what hardware the OnePlus 2 has, and some people are quite vocal about what the phone lacks, but for now let’s focus on what it does have.

Specifications include a 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080 display, 13 mega-pixel OV camera with laser autofocus, USB Type C, dual nano sim, 64GB memory, 4GB RAM, Snapdragon 810 chipset, fingerprint scanner, RGB Notification LED, 3300mAh battery and LTE. There is also another option available that has just 3GB RAM and 16GB memory, but if I were you I would go for the larger memory as there is no SD card support.

oneplus 2 oxygen os vs hydrogen os

My model is the Chinese version of the phone which according to OnePlus has different LTE bands to the International model. The general feeling in the OnePlus community is that the hardware on both phones is exactly the same and only the OS changes what bands and frequencies the phone uses. The good news is that it is very easy to install the international ROM on the Chinese phone (see the video below).

According to OnePlus the Chinese version of the phone won’t have full support for LTE around the world and that you will have issues with dual SIMs as it only comes with one EMEI number. In my time with the phone LTE has worked flawlessly in Spain, UK and China, and dual SIM’s have worked without issue also.

oneplus 2 review

Looking at each part in a little more detail I can tell you that the 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080 display of the OnePlus 2 is really one of the best 1080p panels I have used.

I have found that some panels are difficult to see when wearing polarised sunglasses on sunny days, but this isn’t the case with the OP2, and I can easily see the panel even if the brightness is on lower than normal. I’m also happy to report that the OP2 hasn’t had any ghost touch issues so far (a problem that some OnePlus owners reported having). There are also no yellow marks on the panel either.

I’m sure you are all wondering if the Snapdragon 810 overheats well, I can confirm it does get warm. Even simply taking photos can generate some heat from the phone. OnePlus have tried to keep overheating to a minimum by under clocking the CPU to only 1.8GHz and have designed the chassis to absorb and move heat quickly. So yes the OnePlus 2 does get warm but it also cools very quickly. I’ve never had it get so hot that I have been concerned about it though.

Before the release of the phone, someone at OnePlus was quoted as saying that the OP2 would feature a “better than touchID fingerprint scanner”. I’ve not had a lot of experience with the iPhone fingerprint system, but if the OnePlus 2 is better then it means the iPhone version is far from perfect.

oneplus 2 review

When it is feeling cooperative, which is about 95% of the time, the fingerprint scanner is fast. A brief touch of your print is enough to wake and unlock the OnePlus 2. It takes a fraction of a second, almost as if there were no security protocol in place. The other 5% of the time it just doesn’t respond, and the only way to get it running is to first wake the screen (either by a double screen tap, or pressing the power button) which then wakes the scanner. So far the OP2 has had only one OTA, and I am hoping future updates with fix the issue.

Read Also:  OnePlus Nord Buds Specifications Tipped Ahead Of India Launch

OnePlus 2 Review: Camera

When we learned the OP2 would have ‘just’ a 13 mega-pixel sensor on the rear many people were not that happy. Personally though I am happy that they stuck to 13 mega-pixels.

oneplus 2 review

While it would have been nice to see a 16 mega-pixel or 21 mega-pixel camera, I believe the 13 mega-pixel would still be the better option. Having tried phones with bigger sensors I know how difficult it is for companies to optimise them for consistent use. For example the 20.7 MP camera on the Meizu MX4 takes some great photos, but only if you take the time to get your settings correct and even then you aren’t guranteed a great shot.

oneplus 2 camera sample

In my opinion a good mobile phone camera should be one that you can open and snap away in normal/auto mode regardless of the conditions and get a good photo. Smartphone cameras are meant to be convenient so you can get a picture when the opportunity arrises, if you need to take a few minutes to set up the camera before getting the perfect shot you may as well carry a DSLR.

oneplus 2 camera sample

OnePlus have done a great job with the OnePlus 2 camera. You can take your phone out in the middle of the day or the middle of the night and get great photos without changing settings or even using the flash.

oneplus 2 camera sample

Even if you wanted to use more advanced settings you wouldn’t be able to. The only options you have are Normal, HDR, Clear Image, and Beauty. But that’s all you need.

OnePlus 2 Camera Samples

OnePlus 2 Review: Audio

The OnePlus 2 ships with Maxxaudio, this plus a Snapdragon chipset usually means pretty good audio, but I’m not blown away in this department.

oneplus 2 maxx audio

My first issue with audio on the OnePlus 2 is that MaxxAudio doesn’t seem to be 100% compatible with all earphones. First of all I tried to use my Xiaomi Piston 3 in the OP2. MaxxAudio can be turned on, but there is no enhanced sound. Unplugging the headphones and plugging them back in get’s it working again, but when a new track plays MaxxAudio is off again.

Using OnePlus Silver Bullets or a pair of Bluetooth headphones has the system working without issue, but the audio produced isn’t as good as say the LeTV or Xiaomi Mi Note. With those other two phones I feel drawn in to the sound and enjoying every ounce of a track, even hearing notes I hadn’t noticed before. With the OnePlus 2 I am constantly playing with the equalizer to balance the sound, but it almost alwasys sounds better with MaxxAudio off, and then its pretty average.

OnePlus 2 Review: Battery

Screen on time for me with the 3300mAh battery is about 3 1/2 hours. I’m running Oxygen OS with the latest OTA and have seen a slight improvement when compared to the first Oxygen release.

Now 3 1/2 hours can been very different things. If its 3 1/2 hours of gaming or movie then wow, but that’s not the case for me. My average usage is a lot of photos, social media, web browsing, a few minutes of online video, WeChat and as usual LTE, WIFI and GPS on all the time.

In terms of how long the battery lasts, well I can get to the end of the day and into bed with about 30% left on some days, but on others (today for example) I hit 30% by mid day and was out of juice buy the evening. That’s with no change in my usage habit either.

It’s still early days with Oxygen OS, and as time moves on and updates arrive I am hoping we are going to see longer battery life and more stable power consumption figures.

OnePlus 2 Review: Oxygen OS

Oxygen OS is the international ROM for the OnePlus 2 and it’s the ROM I suggest you use if you buy the Chinese version of the phone. Basically the OnePlus development team have simply taken a stock Android Lollipop install and just add a few of their own features on top.

oneplus 2 review

Some features include support for gestures like double tap to wake, draw a circle to open the camera etc, app permissions so you can only allow apps the access they need rather than grant them everything they require by default and there is also “Shelf”.

oneplus 2 review

“Shelf” is a feature that is still in beta but you can turn it on from the screen settings options. In it’s current form it basically keeps track of the people you contact most and apps you frequently use and lists them in a fast to access slide panel (slide from the left of the screen). Shelf will also tell you the weather in the current location.

As Oxygen OS is basically stock everything works out of the box. All Google apps work without issue, and of all the Chinese phones I have used Oxygen OS is the most stable with Android Wear and also with keeping a connection with your watch.

Oxygen OS isn’t perfect though, it does simply slow down to a stop for no apparent reason at times, and apps sometimes hang too. It is very rare that these issues crop up but they are there from time to time.

OnePlus Oxygen OS Vs Hydrogen OS

How to install Oxygen OS on the Chinese OnePlus 2

OnePlus 2 Review: Conclusion

When the OnePlus 2 marketing began I ignored the hype and reminded myself of how much I didn’t get along with the original OnePlus. When the specs were revealed and the phone finally announced I felt that it wasn’t much of an upgrade over the OnePlus One.

oneplus 2 review

But I’ve had the phone as my daily driver now for a few weeks, and (I kind of hate to say this) I don’t think I can go back to any of my other current phones.

The OnePlus 2 is not a perfect phone. The audio is average, battery life hit and miss, fingerprint scanner can be fussy and Oxygen OS still needs a little work, but when it all works (and it does about 98% of the time) it is an amazing experience.

It might sound strange that I point out so many issues, but really they only happen now and then (except for audio) and in all honesty the reliability is about the same as any other high-end with well optimised operating system.

No matter how much I like the phone, and I will continue to like and use if for sometime to come unless something else comes out, I’m still not buying in to the hype. There are phones with better specs, the OP2 still lacks NFC and Quick Charge and the invite system is a pain in the arse, but when all said and done there are few phones on the market that offer the same level of quality user experience.

If you feel that you now want to get your hands on a OnePlus 2 but don’t want to wait for an invite then you can use one of the following stores who all offer fast shipping to Europe and the rest of the world:

We also have a spare OnePlus 2 which you can try to win in an upcoming giveaway so stay tuned for that!

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153 Comments

  1. realjjj
    August 27, 2015

    You don’t actually address overheating and conveniently no benchmarks. The problem with SD810 is not that the outside of the phone gets hot, that has very little relevance. The issue is that the chip gets too hot and slows down to avoid getting even hotter. It’s more than odd how you forget to run any benchmarks, just this one time.

    • August 27, 2015

      Benchmarks can be posted its not a problem. Just thought we would follow a new format these days as benchmarks really don’t mean all that much and few other sites run them. I’m in the airport now, but will get them all loaded up once I have decent WIFI

      • balcobomber25
        August 27, 2015

        Personally I liked that you skipped the benchmarks, too many people pass up on great phones because it doesn’t fall within their ideal benchmark score.

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      The overheating isn’t as bad on other SD810 phones but it still exists and it stills throttles at times, very badly to where it needs to reboot. It doesnt happen often but it does happen.

      • Phil
        August 27, 2015

        Been using a Minote Pro for 4 months now. Still havent experienced one single occasion where the phone would throttle or slow down at all. The only time I have had an the external phone feel hot was after watching a whole 3d SBS movie using a plastic VR Glasses – and then obviously the phone was enclosed in the plastic box.

        • balcobomber25
          August 27, 2015

          You have been lucky then because the Mi Note Pro has been one of the worst offenders. Do you play a lot of top games or edit a lot of photo/video?

          • Phil
            August 28, 2015

            I am not a gamer really but have had extensive hours of VR experience using my VR headsets to play demos , complete sbs 3d movies and games. As I said the phone does get hot after 2 hours enclosed in the plastic headset but never slows down or switches off. On normal use , I notice that the phone does get warm when using 3g or 4g data
            but again nothing worse than other phones. (I have had numerous andoid phones so far – Jyayu, Neo, Mi3W and Cube and Onda tablets) . This is why I am always surprised to hear about over heating issues for Mi Note pro but then again these comments rarely come from Note Pro owners themselves . its more related to the reputation of the SD810 .
            If I can add, the new Miui V7 has also taken this phone experience to another level

            • balcobomber25
              August 28, 2015

              I know several Mi Note Pro owners that have made these comments. I am a Xiaomi fan, have owned the Mi3, Hongmi Note, Mi4 and Redmi 2 but from what I have heard from actually Xiaomi users the Pro is full of issues.

            • Phil
              August 28, 2015

              What can i say – I must be extremely lucky then as I am yet to have any issue ! Like I said I moved from the Mi3w to the Mi Note Pro and its a world above !

            • Clippoz
              September 1, 2015

              Actually have to agree with Phil, I have no issues at all with my Mi Note Pro, bought one, second hand, here in China. Put inside the Dev rom (weekly updates) and still runs like a charm, never a problem, and i have to be honest..it gets hot just like the s6 edge. So SD810 is not a big problem so far..
              Again..maybe i too fall in the lucky ones?

            • balcobomber25
              September 1, 2015

              It just depends what you do, if you dont push it to the max and try to use all the available power the 810 is a good processor. But when you do push it to the max it will throttle. It might even throttle and you don’t realize it is doing it.

            • Clippoz
              September 1, 2015

              Actuallly i game a lot (free time) and i basically live with the phone in my hand at work..so far i still have to find problems..keep in mind i come to the Mi Note Pro, after a good period of time with the s6 edge. So far i can say that the only plus of Samsung is the loading time…but i see no difference between the two SoC so far.
              For me the SD810 is a good SoC…we should stop thinking about benchmarks…leave that were they really matter (PC) and not in a market were 99% of the people play only Candy Crush..XD

            • balcobomber25
              September 2, 2015

              Your preaching to the choir on benchmarks, I don’t even quote benchmarks when i talk about phones I think they are useless. Has Xiaomi released any major updates since you had the phone? Most of the people I know where complaining when it was first released, and many didn’t keep it they ended up with the regular Note instead.

            • Clippoz
              September 4, 2015

              Actually my benchmark reference was for the people that keep crying about that 🙂 nothing personal on you.
              About the updates..I’m not sure about it, so I can’t say.
              I actually don’t know if is my weekly rom that helps, maybe the Global rom is pretty buggy, but so far is running on par as the S6 edge.
              Again, sadly i can only compare this two top smartphone (probably saying that the Note Pro is a top is a long shot..no NFC, no Fingerprint scanner) but SoC wise they are wonderful phones..both of them.
              I really don’t know if Xiaomi fixed something or again if i’m falling in the “Lucky side” of the Mi Note Owners..can be both, can be one..can be none..i seriously don’t know. :S

  2. MickyLo
    August 27, 2015

    the back cover is ugly

    • August 27, 2015

      agreed it isn’t the best looking but it feels nice

      • MickyLo
        August 27, 2015

        how about compare with ZUK Z1, which one is better

        • August 27, 2015

          The ZUK Z1 stil has the Chinese ZUI. Once it has CM it will be a pretty equal battle on most areas. I think the OP2 will win on camera still, where as the Z1 should be better in battery and maybe even audio. I haven’t really had time to use it much but will now the OP2 review is out of the way

          • MickyLo
            August 27, 2015

            thank you Andi

  3. Angry Mobile Nerd
    August 27, 2015

    Wow a 1.1MB title image, that’s a new record for this site…

    (I have noticed lately Yash’s stories have much improved image optimization, though, unless it’s just a fluke)

    • August 27, 2015

      Nice to see a useful comment after sitting for hours writing a review. Noted for next time.

  4. nilinaxolotl
    August 27, 2015

    I thought there’s only one speaker, which on the right side?

  5. yalok
    August 27, 2015

    I wonder if we blindfold Andy and give him to listen the same audio track(s) using the same headphones but different smartphones. That would be a true experiment!
    PS
    This kind of experiments were done with audiophiles. Most often, they couldn’t distinguish the difference( when blindfolded) between $50 and $1000 DACs and headphones, provided, a high quality audio sample was used.

    • August 27, 2015

      I would like to think I could tell the difference between the LetV and Op2 🙂 it would be a cool experiment though.

      • balcobomber25
        August 27, 2015

        Does LeTV compare to Vivo when it comes to Audio? Vivo is still the golden standard for me when it comes to Audio.

    • Venci
      August 27, 2015

      Clearly you are a guy who haven’t tried a 1000$ amp/dac, so please don’t comment on it.

      • yalok
        August 27, 2015

        🙁 but I want so much to seem smarter, wiser, richer than I really am.

  6. Rizera
    August 27, 2015

    Andi, in your personal opinion, which one would you rather keep as your daily driver: LeTV One or the OnePlus 2? Regards

    • August 27, 2015

      Currently the Oneplus 2 for these reasons. 1) Android Wear is more stable on the OP2 2) the camera is better. But if I had never had a OP2 I would still be more than happy with the LetV and it will still be my 2nd phone. All that said, I think I have a Le Max at the office waiting, so this might change things 😀

      • Ionut Niculita
        August 27, 2015

        test that SoC of Le Max and lets see if overheats

      • Matouš Kostlivý
        August 27, 2015

        How would you compare those phones – camerawise – to the Vivo Xshot (the phone I have at the moment).

  7. Venci
    August 27, 2015

    Why no review score ?

    • August 27, 2015

      ah very good point! will add this

  8. jolu
    August 27, 2015

    Great and detailled review Andy. But the review outcome is not as I hoped. I was hoping that after reading your full review I would have been able to make a descission, if I would buy it or not. I’m not convinced enough to make the purchase right away. I might wait a bit and follow the OTA updates.

    For now I will stuck to my Be Touch 2. (And Mi note ofcourse)

  9. August 27, 2015

    Nice review, thank you. Lately saw comments that questioned about the ‘honesty’ of reviews on this site: this one gives me the feeling you try to be objective :-).

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      This is one of the few sites where they tell it like it is. If a phone is a disappointment they will tell everyone. If they give a good review and notice problems later they will have an update (like Andi did with the LeTV and Yash with MX5).

  10. balcobomber25
    August 27, 2015

    I used one for about two weeks when I was traveling through Asia (can read my full comments in the forum). I echo most of what Andi says, except for I will say with regards to performance, I notice some issues where the processor will be tasked too much and come to a crashing halt, it’s like taking a motorcycle up a mountain and it’s searching for an extra gear that isnt there. The only solution is a reboot. It can get very warm at times but never to the point where it hurts to hold it, Oneplus claimed to use a lot of thermal paste to deal with the heating issues. I am interested to see how the heat is 6 months from now when the thermal paste starts to wear down.

    As for the Camera I agree with him, the MX5 uses the same camera as the MX4 and it can take amazing photos but you have to get the settings just right. For the average user the OP2 is better out of the box, for those of us with experience the MX5 is better. At the end of those 2 weeks I wasn’t left with a feeling of wanting to keep the OP2, I was glad i got to test it out and if it was my phone I wouldn’t have any issues. But I was glad to go back to the MX5.

    • Cuerex
      August 28, 2015

      It’s not thermalpaste, it’s layers of highly conductive Graphite which spreads the heat throughout the phone, which are probably glued via thermal adhesive. It can’t wear down

      • balcobomber25
        August 28, 2015

        From OnePlus themselves:

        “Inside the 2, the 810 consists of several CPU processors. Layered on top of these processors is both thermal gel and graphite placed across different areas of the phone.”

        Thermal Gel and thermal paste is the same thing (also known as thermal grease) and it can very well wear down depending on what kind they used, how hot the chip gets under thermal load and how good the ventilation is. Thermal paste hardly ever wears out on PC’s because most PC’s have very good airflow, but on a cell phone it’s a different story. A cell phone has no fan and very limited places for the heat to escape.

    • Tajwar
      August 31, 2015

      Hi Balcobomber25
      could you please tell me how is your mx5 rocking performance wise(especially gaming) and as a daily driver, I want to recommend it to a friend who wants a phone to last at least 2 years. ( currently has a iFone5)
      Thanks

      • balcobomber25
        September 1, 2015

        I am not a gamer so im not the best person to answer this question. All of my gaming is done on Xbox One. My phone is for work, camera and music.

  11. Terry Ong
    August 27, 2015

    Hi Andi, which phone would you recommend me to go for, OP2, LeTv One, MX5 or Xiaomi Mi Note? My main concern was actually the camera. Thank you!

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      I have used three of those and I would say out of the box the Mi Note has the best camera followed very closely by the OP2. If you take the time to really figure the camera out and test the best possible settings for each environment the MX5 can blow them both out of the water, but it does take a lot of time.

      • Terry Ong
        August 27, 2015

        Hello, thanks for your suggestion, I’ve heard that Mi Note has autofocus problem was it true? I’m fine with changing mode this and that, as I’m doing it with my current phone most of the time. If not phone above, any recommendation for phone with great camera too? Thank you!

        • balcobomber25
          August 27, 2015

          I only used the Mi Note briefly, it was for about an hour with a friend of mine who is a Xiaomi marketing rep. I didn’t notice any issue with it but again it was such a short time. The Lenovo Vibe Shot and Nubia Z9 both have excellent cameras but that have the SD 615 which is good for everyday use but not good if you do anything processor intensive.

          • Terry Ong
            August 27, 2015

            I see I see but for short moment like that everything was fine is it? Nubia Z9 was way too expensive!

            • balcobomber25
              August 27, 2015

              Z9 Max is actually cheaper than the Mi Note Pro. They all have the same camera the difference is the regular Z9 has SD 810.

            • Terry Ong
              August 27, 2015

              Z9 Max with SD 615 is with 2 GB ram right?

            • balcobomber25
              August 27, 2015

              Not sure to tell you the truth.

            • Tajwar
              August 31, 2015

              Yeah somewhere I see SD615 and others SD810

  12. Varun Varma
    August 27, 2015

    Andi, from your review it sounds like the oneplus 2 has worse battery life compared to the previous generation oneplus one. I know many other reviewers have come to the same conclusion. Why do you think this is the case despite the oneplus 2 having a larger battery? Do you think it is due to the phone having less power efficient internals such as the snapdragon 810 or due to oxygen is being less optimised for the phone compared cyanogen os?

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      There could be a number of reasons, the 810 is less efficient than the 801 (just shows how poorly designed it is by Qualcomm). CM is much better for battery life than most other UI’s and Oxygen isn’t fully optimized yet. Also the Two has more features than the One like a fingerprint scanner. It doesn’t use much battery but it still uses some.

      • Varun Varma
        August 27, 2015

        It’ll be interesting to see the battery life on the zuk z1 with cyanogen os. If they could get around 6 hours SOT on the oneplus one with a 3100mah battery, then they should be able to get upwards of 9 hours SOT on the zuk z1 with its 4100mah battery while having similar specs such as the snapdragon 801 SoC.

        • balcobomber25
          August 27, 2015

          CM is amazing at battery life, it gets rid of a lot of the clout that comes with Android.

  13. realjjj
    August 27, 2015

    You don’t actually address overheating and conveniently no benchmarks. The problem with SD810 is not that the outside of the phone gets hot, that has very little relevance. The issue is that the chip gets too hot and slows down to avoid getting even hotter. It’s more than odd how you forget to run any benchmarks, just this one time.

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      Benchmarks can be posted its not a problem. Just thought we would follow a new format these days as benchmarks really don’t mean all that much and few other sites run them. I’m in the airport now, but will get them all loaded up once I have decent WIFI

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      The overheating isn’t as bad on other SD810 phones but it still exists and it stills throttles at times, very badly to where it needs to reboot. It doesnt happen often but it does happen.

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      Personally I liked that you skipped the benchmarks, too many people pass up on great phones because it doesn’t fall within their ideal benchmark score.

    • Phil
      August 27, 2015

      Been using a Minote Pro for 4 months now. Still havent experienced one single occasion where the phone would throttle or slow down at all. The only time I have had an the external phone feel hot was after watching a whole 3d SBS movie using a plastic VR Glasses – and then obviously the phone was enclosed in the plastic box.

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      You have been lucky then because the Mi Note Pro has been one of the worst offenders. Do you play a lot of top games or edit a lot of photo/video?

    • Phil
      August 28, 2015

      I am not a gamer really but have had extensive hours of VR experience using my VR headsets to play demos , complete sbs 3d movies and games. As I said the phone does get hot after 2 hours enclosed in the plastic headset but never slows down or switches off. On normal use , I notice that the phone does get warm when using 3g or 4g data
      but again nothing worse than other phones. (I have had numerous andoid phones so far – Jyayu, Neo, Mi3W and Cube and Onda tablets) . This is why I am always surprised to hear about over heating issues for Mi Note pro but then again these comments rarely come from Note Pro owners themselves . its more related to the reputation of the SD810 .
      If I can add, the new Miui V7 has also taken this phone experience to another level

    • balcobomber25
      August 28, 2015

      I know several Mi Note Pro owners that have made these comments. I am a Xiaomi fan, have owned the Mi3, Hongmi Note, Mi4 and Redmi 2 but from what I have heard from actually Xiaomi users the Pro is full of issues.

    • Phil
      August 28, 2015

      What can i say – I must be extremely lucky then as I am yet to have any issue ! Like I said I moved from the Mi3w to the Mi Note Pro and its a world above !

    • Clippoz
      September 1, 2015

      Actually have to agree with Phil, I have no issues at all with my Mi Note Pro, bought one, second hand, here in China. Put inside the Dev rom (weekly updates) and still runs like a charm, never a problem, and i have to be honest..it gets hot just like the s6 edge. So SD810 is not a big problem so far..
      Again..maybe i too fall in the lucky ones?

    • balcobomber25
      September 1, 2015

      It just depends what you do, if you dont push it to the max and try to use all the available power the 810 is a good processor. But when you do push it to the max it will throttle. It might even throttle and you don’t realize it is doing it.

    • Clippoz
      September 2, 2015

      Actuallly i game a lot (free time) and i basically live with the phone in my hand at work..so far i still have to find problems..keep in mind i come to the Mi Note Pro, after a good period of time with the s6 edge. So far i can say that the only plus of Samsung is the loading time…but i see no difference between the two SoC so far.
      For me the SD810 is a good SoC…we should stop thinking about benchmarks…leave that were they really matter (PC) and not in a market were 99% of the people play only Candy Crush..XD

    • balcobomber25
      September 2, 2015

      Your preaching to the choir on benchmarks, I don’t even quote benchmarks when i talk about phones I think they are useless. Has Xiaomi released any major updates since you had the phone? Most of the people I know where complaining when it was first released, and many didn’t keep it they ended up with the regular Note instead.

    • Clippoz
      September 4, 2015

      Actually my benchmark reference was for the people that keep crying about that 🙂 nothing personal on you.
      About the updates..I’m not sure about it, so I can’t say.
      I actually don’t know if is my weekly rom that helps, maybe the Global rom is pretty buggy, but so far is running on par as the S6 edge.
      Again, sadly i can only compare this two top smartphone (probably saying that the Note Pro is a top is a long shot..no NFC, no Fingerprint scanner) but SoC wise they are wonderful phones..both of them.
      I really don’t know if Xiaomi fixed something or again if i’m falling in the “Lucky side” of the Mi Note Owners..can be both, can be one..can be none..i seriously don’t know. :S

  14. MickyLo
    August 27, 2015

    the back cover is ugly

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      agreed it isn’t the best looking but it feels nice

    • MickyLo
      August 27, 2015

      how about compare with ZUK Z1, which one is better

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      The ZUK Z1 stil has the Chinese ZUI. Once it has CM it will be a pretty equal battle on most areas. I think the OP2 will win on camera still, where as the Z1 should be better in battery and maybe even audio. I haven’t really had time to use it much but will now the OP2 review is out of the way

    • MickyLo
      August 27, 2015

      thank you Andi

  15. Naveed Kazi
    August 27, 2015
    • FlashTec
      August 27, 2015

      Yes that is a sad story but I can almost guarantee you that every phonecompany have at least one of these stories.

  16. Angry Mobile Nerd
    August 27, 2015

    Wow a 1.1MB title image, that’s a new record for this site…

    (I have noticed lately Yash’s stories have much improved image optimization, though, unless it’s just a fluke)

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      Nice to see a useful comment after sitting for hours writing a review. Noted for next time.

  17. nilinaxolotl
    August 27, 2015

    I thought there’s only one speaker, which on the right side?

  18. yalok
    August 27, 2015

    I wonder if we blindfold Andy and give him to listen the same audio track(s) using the same headphones but different smartphones. That would be a true experiment!
    PS
    This kind of experiments were done with audiophiles. Most often, they couldn’t distinguish the difference( when blindfolded) between $50 and $1000 DACs and headphones, provided, a high quality audio sample was used.

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      I would like to think I could tell the difference between the LetV and Op2 🙂 it would be a cool experiment though.

    • Venci
      August 27, 2015

      Clearly you are a guy who haven’t tried a 1000$ amp/dac, so please don’t comment on it.

    • yalok
      August 27, 2015

      🙁 but I want so much to seem smarter, wiser, richer than I really am.

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      Does LeTV compare to Vivo when it comes to Audio? Vivo is still the golden standard for me when it comes to Audio.

  19. Guest
    August 27, 2015

    Andi, in your personal opinion, which one would you rather keep as your daily driver: LeTV One or the OnePlus 2? Regards

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      Currently the Oneplus 2 for these reasons. 1) Android Wear is more stable on the OP2 2) the camera is better. But if I had never had a OP2 I would still be more than happy with the LetV and it will still be my 2nd phone. All that said, I think I have a Le Max at the office waiting, so this might change things 😀

    • Ionut Niculita
      August 27, 2015

      test that SoC of Le Max and lets see if overheats

    • Matouš Kostlivý
      August 27, 2015

      How would you compare those phones – camerawise – to the Vivo Xshot (the phone I have at the moment).

  20. Venci
    August 27, 2015

    Why no review score ?

    • Andi Sykes
      August 27, 2015

      ah very good point! will add this

  21. jolu
    August 27, 2015

    Great and detailled review Andy. But the review outcome is not as I hoped. I was hoping that after reading your full review I would have been able to make a descission, if I would buy it or not. I’m not convinced enough to make the purchase right away. I might wait a bit and follow the OTA updates.

    For now I will stuck to my Be Touch 2. (And Mi note ofcourse)

  22. liki
    August 27, 2015

    Andy, when will you do a MEizu MX5 rewiev??? And how I read on other forum they sead that MEizu MX5 is at end better then OP2????

    • Muhammad Yasir
      August 27, 2015

      Yash did that already !

      • liki
        August 28, 2015

        It was very bad by Yash… We need new one rewiev

        • Muhammad Yasir
          August 28, 2015

          heyyy ! don’t be so harsh now …

  23. Raoul Teeuwen
    August 27, 2015

    Nice review, thank you. Lately saw comments that questioned about the ‘honesty’ of reviews on this site: this one gives me the feeling you try to be objective :-).

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      This is one of the few sites where they tell it like it is. If a phone is a disappointment they will tell everyone. If they give a good review and notice problems later they will have an update (like Andi did with the LeTV and Yash with MX5).

  24. balcobomber25
    August 27, 2015

    I used one for about two weeks when I was traveling through Asia (can read my full comments in the forum). I echo most of what Andi says, except for I will say with regards to performance, I notice some issues where the processor will be tasked too much and come to a crashing halt, it’s like taking a motorcycle up a mountain and it’s searching for an extra gear that isnt there. The only solution is a reboot. It can get very warm at times but never to the point where it hurts to hold it, Oneplus claimed to use a lot of thermal paste to deal with the heating issues. I am interested to see how the heat is 6 months from now when the thermal paste starts to wear down.

    As for the Camera I agree with him, the MX5 uses the same camera as the MX4 and it can take amazing photos but you have to get the settings just right. For the average user the OP2 is better out of the box, for those of us with experience the MX5 is better. At the end of those 2 weeks I wasn’t left with a feeling of wanting to keep the OP2, I was glad i got to test it out and if it was my phone I wouldn’t have any issues. But I was glad to go back to the MX5.

    • Cuerex
      August 28, 2015

      It’s not thermalpaste, it’s layers of highly conductive Graphite which spreads the heat throughout the phone, which are probably glued via thermal adhesive. It can’t wear down

    • balcobomber25
      August 28, 2015

      From OnePlus themselves:

      “Inside the 2, the 810 consists of several CPU processors. Layered on top of these processors is both thermal gel and graphite placed across different areas of the phone.”

      Thermal Gel and thermal paste is the same thing (also known as thermal grease) and it can very well wear down depending on what kind they used, how hot the chip gets under thermal load and how good the ventilation is. Thermal paste hardly ever wears out on PC’s because most PC’s have very good airflow, but on a cell phone it’s a different story. A cell phone has no fan and very limited places for the heat to escape.

    • Tajwar
      August 31, 2015

      Hi Balcobomber25
      could you please tell me how is your mx5 rocking performance wise(especially gaming) and as a daily driver, I want to recommend it to a friend who wants a phone to last at least 2 years. ( currently has a iFone5)
      Thanks

    • balcobomber25
      September 1, 2015

      I am not a gamer so im not the best person to answer this question. All of my gaming is done on Xbox One. My phone is for work, camera and music.

  25. Terry Ong
    August 27, 2015

    Hi Andi, which phone would you recommend me to go for, OP2, LeTv One, MX5 or Xiaomi Mi Note? My main concern was actually the camera. Thank you!

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      I have used three of those and I would say out of the box the Mi Note has the best camera followed very closely by the OP2. If you take the time to really figure the camera out and test the best possible settings for each environment the MX5 can blow them both out of the water, but it does take a lot of time.

    • Terry Ong
      August 27, 2015

      Hello, thanks for your suggestion, I’ve heard that Mi Note has autofocus problem was it true? I’m fine with changing mode this and that, as I’m doing it with my current phone most of the time. If not phone above, any recommendation for phone with great camera too? Thank you!

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      I only used the Mi Note briefly, it was for about an hour with a friend of mine who is a Xiaomi marketing rep. I didn’t notice any issue with it but again it was such a short time. The Lenovo Vibe Shot and Nubia Z9 both have excellent cameras but that have the SD 615 which is good for everyday use but not good if you do anything processor intensive.

    • Terry Ong
      August 27, 2015

      I see I see but for short moment like that everything was fine is it? Nubia Z9 was way too expensive!

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      Z9 Max is actually cheaper than the Mi Note Pro. They all have the same camera the difference is the regular Z9 has SD 810.

    • Terry Ong
      August 27, 2015

      Z9 Max with SD 615 is with 2 GB ram right?

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      Not sure to tell you the truth.

    • Tajwar
      August 31, 2015

      Yeah somewhere I see SD615 and others SD810

  26. Varun Varma
    August 27, 2015

    Andi, from your review it sounds like the oneplus 2 has worse battery life compared to the previous generation oneplus one. I know many other reviewers have come to the same conclusion. Why do you think this is the case despite the oneplus 2 having a larger battery? Do you think it is due to the phone having less power efficient internals such as the snapdragon 810 or due to oxygen is being less optimised for the phone compared cyanogen os?

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      There could be a number of reasons, the 810 is less efficient than the 801 (just shows how poorly designed it is by Qualcomm). CM is much better for battery life than most other UI’s and Oxygen isn’t fully optimized yet. Also the Two has more features than the One like a fingerprint scanner. It doesn’t use much battery but it still uses some.

    • Varun Varma
      August 27, 2015

      It’ll be interesting to see the battery life on the zuk z1 with cyanogen os. If they could get around 6 hours SOT on the oneplus one with a 3100mah battery, then they should be able to get upwards of 9 hours SOT on the zuk z1 with its 4100mah battery while having similar specs such as the snapdragon 801 SoC.

    • balcobomber25
      August 27, 2015

      CM is amazing at battery life, it gets rid of a lot of the clout that comes with Android.

  27. xi7
    August 27, 2015

    My oneplus2 come next week, i think it have – Build Quality 10, Camera 7,5 , battery 7, performance 7 and price 7. VS my Lumia 1020 , Build Quality 10, Camera 10, battery Case 6, performance 5 and price today 10.

  28. Naveed Kazi
    August 27, 2015
    • FlashTec
      August 27, 2015

      Yes that is a sad story but I can almost guarantee you that every phonecompany have at least one of these stories.

  29. Muhammad Yasir
    August 27, 2015

    why is cam 9/10 … not 10/10??

    • FlashTec
      August 27, 2015

      Should anything ever be able to reach 10/10? 10/10 would mean that absolutely nothing could get better and with a camera in a phone I don’t think that would be possible so 9/10 is still very good, at least thats what I think

      • Muhammad Yasir
        August 27, 2015

        hmm.. ok

        its just that im looking for a GREAT CAM phone … if i there ever were to be a phone under $200 with a 9/10 CAM rating … i’d be more than happy to go for it !

  30. Guest
    August 27, 2015

    Andy, when will you do a MEizu MX5 rewiev??? And how I read on other forum they sead that MEizu MX5 is at end better then OP2????

    • Guest
      August 27, 2015

      Yash did that already !

    • Guest
      August 28, 2015

      It was very bad by Yash… We need new one rewiev

    • Guest
      August 28, 2015

      heyyy ! don’t be so harsh now …

  31. fido futte
    August 27, 2015

    The screen quality does not look good,. Is this JDI screen or who is the manufactor ?

  32. Faux-News
    August 27, 2015

    Have to give credit to One plus software developers for bringing an entirely new UI design on their Hydrogen OS. Most others usually just rip off from many different UI to create one.

  33. xi7
    August 27, 2015

    My oneplus2 come next week, i think it have – Build Quality 10, Camera 7,5 , battery 7, performance 7 and price 7. VS my Lumia 1020 , Build Quality 10, Camera 10, battery Case 6, performance 5 and price today 10.

  34. FlashTec
    August 27, 2015

    Did I read anything wrong in this review or did I understand it correctly if I got the idea that one could buy a Chinese OPT and just change the rom to an international version and after that the phone will have both band 7 and 20?

  35. Guest
    August 27, 2015

    why is cam 9/10 … not 10/10??

    • FlashTec
      August 27, 2015

      Should anything ever be able to reach 10/10? 10/10 would mean that absolutely nothing could get better and with a camera in a phone I don’t think that would be possible so 9/10 is still very good, at least thats what I think

    • Guest
      August 27, 2015

      hmm.. ok

      its just that im looking for a GREAT CAM phone … if i there ever were to be a phone under $200 with a 9/10 CAM rating … i’d be more than happy to go for it !

  36. The Special Juan
    August 27, 2015

    Nice review andi. Cheers for taking the time and effort. We regular followers all appreciate your efforts. Looking forward to your mx5 review for comparison . I am using an mx5 now, but am in a queue for a op2, so will wait for your thoughts. Like the new format without benchmarks BTW…far too much “my tool is bigger than your tool“ when it comes to phone benchmarks (and camera mp come to think of it) , with not enough consideration by some to actual real world use. Keep up the good work!

  37. FlashTec
    August 27, 2015

    Don’t know where my last post ended up so guess I’ll try again. Did I understand this review correctly when I got the idea that it’s possible to buy Chinese OPT and install international rom and thereby get band 7 & 20 on it?

    • MattD
      August 28, 2015

      You other post is right below xD
      However one plus officially said that the chip of chinese version doesn’t support all of the international bands, but i personally don’t think it actually like that.
      Producing 2 different versions would cost them some extra money, and the effort is not worth it.
      So probably the model is just the same, but they said they’re not to prevent people from buying from a reseller, i think.
      However, if you check xda i really think there must be the answer to your question somewhere, and if not, it would come soon

      • FlashTec
        August 29, 2015

        Don’t know if it was my galaxy s2 messing around or what happened but the first one didn’t show up before I posted the second one xD

        If one was to buy an Chinese OPT I guess I would have to source a charger from somewhere else as I live in Sweden?

        • MattD
          September 1, 2015

          Usually most resellers send an adapter for european costumers, but it isn’t a rule, so maybe you’d have to use another charger or an adapter

  38. fido futte
    August 27, 2015

    The screen quality does not look good,. Is this JDI screen or who is the manufactor ?

  39. Faux-News
    August 27, 2015

    Have to give credit to One plus software developers for bringing an entirely new UI design on their Hydrogen OS. Most others usually just rip off from many different UI to create one.

  40. The Special Juan
    August 27, 2015

    Nice review andi. Cheers for taking the time and effort. We regular followers all appreciate your efforts. Looking forward to your mx5 review for comparison . I am using an mx5 now, but am in a queue for a op2, so will wait for your thoughts. Like the new format without benchmarks BTW…far too much “my tool is bigger than your tool“ when it comes to phone benchmarks (and camera mp come to think of it) , with not enough consideration by some to actual real world use. Keep up the good work!

  41. FlashTec
    August 27, 2015

    Don’t know where my last post ended up so guess I’ll try again. Did I understand this review correctly when I got the idea that it’s possible to buy Chinese OPT and install international rom and thereby get band 7 & 20 on it?

    • MattD
      August 28, 2015

      You other post is right below xD
      However one plus officially said that the chip of chinese version doesn’t support all of the international bands, but i personally don’t think it actually like that.
      Producing 2 different versions would cost them some extra money, and the effort is not worth it.
      So probably the model is just the same, but they said they’re not to prevent people from buying from a reseller, i think.
      However, if you check xda i really think there must be the answer to your question somewhere, and if not, it would come soon

    • FlashTec
      August 29, 2015

      Don’t know if it was my galaxy s2 messing around or what happened but the first one didn’t show up before I posted the second one xD

      If one was to buy an Chinese OPT I guess I would have to source a charger from somewhere else as I live in Sweden?

    • MattD
      September 1, 2015

      Usually most resellers send an adapter for european costumers, but it isn’t a rule, so maybe you’d have to use another charger or an adapter

  42. E8hffff
    August 31, 2015

    I actually love its looks. I’m so desperate at the moment for a phone, that I would be tempted to buy this, especially with the open source support, but it kicks me in the teeth to think no; NFC, small resolution cameras, low-res screen. small storage memory of 16GB, etc, etc.

    People please don’t say the camera resolutions don’t matter, as they do to me.

    • Youl
      September 14, 2015

      Mega pixels mean almost nothing… close to nothing.
      Look iphones..

  43. E8hffff
    August 31, 2015

    Nice review!

  44. E8hffff
    August 31, 2015

    I actually love its looks. I’m so desperate at the moment for a phone, that I would be tempted to buy this, especially with the open source support, but it kicks me in the teeth to think no; NFC, small resolution cameras, low-res screen. small storage memory of 16GB, etc, etc.

    People please don’t say the camera resolutions don’t matter, as they do to me.

    • Youl
      September 14, 2015

      Mega pixels mean almost nothing… close to nothing.
      Look iphones..

  45. E8hffff
    August 31, 2015

    Nice review!

  46. Youl
    September 14, 2015

    I own a OP2 since 2 weeks.
    For me, it’s a flagship killer.
    S810 is powerful. Heating ? yes. Over Heating ? no

    400euros/dollards, show me a better deal please

  47. Youl
    September 14, 2015

    I own a OP2 since 2 weeks.
    For me, it’s a flagship killer.
    S810 is powerful. Heating ? yes. Over Heating ? no

    400euros/dollards, show me a better deal please

  48. David Morris
    September 23, 2015

    “The general feeling in the OnePlus community is that the hardware on both phones is exactly the same and only the OS changes what bands and frequencies the phone uses.”

    So does this mean we can just install oxygen on the Chinese version and you will have coverage in North america? It seems hard for that to be the case because the north american version and the EU/asia version both use oxygen correct? Yet if you look at the difference between the versions here https://www.gizchina.com/2015/08/12/oneplus-2-network-compatibility-explained/ you see that there are differences in the bands that the eu/asia model use and the northamerican model use.

  49. David Morris
    September 23, 2015

    “The general feeling in the OnePlus community is that the hardware on both phones is exactly the same and only the OS changes what bands and frequencies the phone uses.”

    So does this mean we can just install oxygen on the Chinese version and you will have coverage in North america? It seems hard for that to be the case because the north american version and the EU/asia version both use oxygen correct? Yet if you look at the difference between the versions here http://www.gizchina.com/2015/08/12/oneplus-2-network-compatibility-explained/ you see that there are differences in the bands that the eu/asia model use and the northamerican model use.