OnePlus warmed up the crowd a few weeks ago by announcing its three year, $150 million partnership with legendary camera maker Hasselblad. Hasselblad cameras flew on Apollo 11 to the moon, now they come equipped on the latest Snapdragon 888 flagship.
The OnePlus 9 Pro introduces Fluid Display 2.0 and Warp Charge 50 Wireless charging. It also has a bespoke Sony IMX789 image sensor in its main camera. The vanilla model has its own upgrades.
OnePlus 9 Pro
The headlining feature this generation is the camera that Hasselblad helped develop and the OnePlus 9 Pro has the best version. On its first go-around in the smartphone segment, the Swedish camera maker focused on improving the color science of the two phones.
The main camera uses a IMX789 sensor that was co-developed with Sony. It’s a large 1/1.43” sensor with 1.12 µm pixels, 48MP resolution. It features the latest camera technologies, including dual native ISO, Digital Overlap HDR (DOL-HDR) and 2×2 on-chip lens (OCL). And OIS, of course.
This sensor can produce 12-bit RAW images. The dedicated Hasselblad Pro Mode in the camera app will help you fine-tune your photos for a natural look and feel. The main sensor can also record 8K video at 30 fps as well as 4K at 120 fps. There’s a 2MP black & white camera on board meant to assist the main camera with monochrome shots.
The ultra wide-angle camera boasts another Sony sensor, the 50MP IMX766. The 1/1.56” sensor sits behind a freeform lens, which reduces distortion near the edges to 1% (compared to 10-20% for a typical lens). This camera has an autofocus system that allows it to shoot macro photos at just 4 cm distance.
This phone skips the periscope, equipping a standard telephoto lens instead. It offers 3.3x optical magnification (77 mm), bringing ever so slightly closer to the action than 8 Pro’s 3x lens. The 8MP sensor in that one has 1.0µm pixels and OIS.
The new Fluid Display 2.0 makes its debut with the OnePlus 9 Pro. It’s a 6.7” LTPO panel, which promises up to 50% power savings in general usage. This efficiency stems from the ability to adjust the refresh rate from the top 120Hz (for a smooth UI) all the way down to 1Hz (used when reading text or showing the Always On Display). The display can adapt to its content too, e.g. run at 24Hz for movies or 90Hz for Fortnite.
The 1440p+ display is built using the E4 emitting material and native 10-bit color depth. It has ambient light sensors on the front and back so that it can automatically adjust its color temperature. All of this earned it an A+ score from DisplayMate. The display is quite bright too, peaking at 1,300 nits.
The 120Hz refresh rate is backed by touch sampling rate of 240Hz, which improves response times when gaming. Speaking of gaming, let’s look at the chipset.
The OnePlus 9 Pro is powered by the Snapdragon 888, of course, paired with LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage. The new Cool Play setup is based on the 8T cooling solution, but with a larger vapor chamber, thicker graphite sheets and more copper foil for a higher capacity to pull heat away.
The phone comes with 8GB of RAM as standard, but you can upgrade to 12GB. Base storage is 128GB, with a 256GB option. Check the bottom of this article for a table with the prices.
Besides a new display, this phone also introduces Warp Charge 50 Wireless. The new wireless charger is bought separately and offers two coils so the 9 Pro can be charged vertically or horizontally (say, while you’re watching a movie). A full 1-100% charge takes only 43 minutes.
But if you are really in a hurry, then you can just use the Warp Charge 65T wired charger that comes with the phone. It’s twice as fast as the 8 Pro charger – 1-100% takes 29 minutes, 8 Pro’s 30W charger only gets to 50% in that time. Also, you can use this to charge other gadgets that support SB Power Delivery: a laptop, a power bank, a Nintendo Switch, etc (PPS is supported).
Finally, a bit about the phone’s hardware. It has an aluminum frame sandwiched between two panes of glass. The front is a curved pane of Gorilla Glass, the back has several options. The new hero color is Pine Green with a soft double-layer matte finish. Morning Mist shows a silver-to-black gradient and Stellar Black has a frosted finish that recalls the trademark sandstone look. The body is rated IP68 for dust and water resistance.
The OnePlus 9 gets a parred back version of the Hasselblad camera. The main module switches to the older IMX689 sensor – it is still a 1/1.43” 48MP sensor with 2×2 on-chip lens, dual native ISO and 12-bit RAW output. DOL-HDR is replaced with traditional HDR.
OIS is gone and while the camera keeps the 8K 30 fps mode, it loses the 4K 120 fps mode (it tops out at 4K 60 fps). The Hasselblad Pro Mode is still on board, despite the sensor change.
The good news is that the 50MP ultrawide camera is the same – same IMX766 sensor with freefrom lens and ability to shoot macro photos at 4 cm. The 2MP monochrome camera is still on board, but the biggest loss of going from Pro to vanilla is that you get no telephoto camera.
The vanilla OnePlus 9 has a first generation Fluid Display, meaning it has 120Hz refresh mode, but it is not adaptive. It’s a flat 6.55” AMOLED panel with 1080p+ resolution, just as we saw on the 8T. It did still earn an A+ score from DisplayMate, though, as it is HDR10+ certified and tops out at 1,100 nits of brightness.
The phone is powered by the Snapdragon 888 chipset with the new Cool Play cooling system. The phone is equipped with LPDDR5 RAM and UFS 3.1 storage with the same configuration options – 8/128GB and 12/256GB.
The vanilla model also comes with a 4,500 mAh battery and a wired Warp Charge 65T (1-100% in 29 minutes). This is the first non-Pro model of the family to feature wireless charging (region dependent), though it only supports 15W Qi charging. Note that only the North American and European versions have this.
Both OnePlus 9 models feature dual stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos, plus upgraded haptic feedback motors. Both models use the same selfie camera – 16 MP sensor (IMX471, 1.0 µm), fixed focus f/2.4 lens.
The OnePlus 9 has a fiberglass-reinforced polymer frame with new “metalization” process that gives it a glossy look. Three colors are available: Winter Mist (a subtle purple gradient), Arctic Sky (a matte blue) and Astral Black (a matte film below the glossy glass back).
Here are the prices for the two models in the US, Europe and India:
|OnePlus 9 Pro||USA||Europe||India|
|8/128 GB||USD 970||EUR 900||INR 65,000|
|12/256 GB||USD 1,070||EUR 1,000||INR 70,000|
|8/128 GB||USD 730||EUR 700||INR 50,000|
|12/256 GB||USD 830||EUR 800||INR 55,000|