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Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G review

A well-rounded mid-ranger with an eye-popping price tag

Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G review
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

With its sleek looks and well-rounded feature set, the Reno 4 Pro 5G seems an appealing mid-range option until you look at the price tag. Aside from best-in-class 65W fast charging, nothing about the Reno 4 Pro 5G stands out in a fiercely competitive market space.

For

  • Blazing fast charging
  • Plush design and form factor
  • Decent performance

Against

  • Too expensive for mid-range specs
  • No wireless charging
  • No water or dust resistance

Two-minute review

The next generation of Oppo’s mid-range Reno family is here, headlined by the Reno 4 Pro 5G, aiming to bring a plush design matched with decent specs at an attractive mid-range price.

The previous generation Oppo Reno 3 Pro had middling performance, but with the Reno 4 Pro 5G, Oppo has made some changes. There's now a more competent processor and the phone also includes its SuperVOOC 2.0 65W charging tech.

We liked the Oppo Reno 3 Pro’s design but Oppo has improved it further with the Reno 4 Pro 5G. It’s a slimmer and lighter phone clad in glass and metal, giving it a plush in-hand feel. It also has a comfy form factor thanks to its slim profile and curved edges.

Unless you have small hands you should have no trouble wielding and operating the phone with one hand - the top edge can be a stretch, but there's a software feature to help with that.

The 6.5-inch AMOLED display is vibrant, though a tad oversaturated out of the box. It can render deep blacks and vivid colors that are easy to view across a wide range of viewing angles.

However, it’s not the sharpest screen we’ve tested in terms of clarity. But the phone gets plenty bright at peak brightness, which means you’ll have no trouble viewing the screen at mid to low brightness levels.

Its 4,000mAh battery can last around a day, or even a bit more if you are a moderate user, and when you run out of juice, getting back up to 100% is incredibly quick with the phone going from zero to full in just 30 minutes - something we first saw on the Oppo Find X2 Pro.

The Reno 3 Pro’s cameras were quite capable and versatile; the Reno 4 Pro 5G, in contrast, has two fewer lenses and a lower spec'd main snapper, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It's a cleaner camera experience, but we found it struggled to capture color and contrast accurately. Often, pictures felt washed out even with HDR.

The cameras fare okay in low light, but the dedicated Night Mode makes a dramatic difference by adding light and details in darker areas for a clearer and brighter photo. This is assuming you can keep your hands steady for the 5-10 seconds it takes the phone to capture shots in this mode. Shaky hands will result in muddied photos where details blur together to form murky blobs. 

(Image credit: Future)

ColorOS 7.2 is laid on top of Android 10 here, and offers a couple of smart features we really like. The first is 'Icon pull down', which lets you squeeze all the icons on your screen with a simple gesture to one corner for easy reach. Second is a smart floating bar that can be pulled up from the edge of the screen to bring up a handy list of frequently used tools and apps.

In terms of raw power, the Reno 4 Pro 5G has the Snapdragon 765G at its heart, which is not the beefiest chipset on the market but is more than capable of handling intense gaming and a decent bout of multitasking. 

Right now, there are other phones that can do what the Reno 4 Pro 5G does - sans the 65W charging - and for a lot less. In this fiercely competitive segment where options are plenty and consumers look for value, the Reno 4 Pro 5G’s price makes it a hard phone to recommend.

Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G price and availability

  • Out now in the UK
  • No word on the US or Australia
  • Costs £699.99 / AED2,499 (around $900 / AU$1,250)

The Reno 4 Pro 5G launched on October 16 in the UK and September 22 in the Middle East. It's priced at £699.99 / AED2,499 (around $900 / AU$1,250, but with no word on a US or Australian release). It’s available in Galactic Blue and Space Black.

Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G

(Image credit: Future)

Design and display

  • Thin, light and curvy
  • 6.5-inch 1080 x 2400 AMOLED screen
  • 90Hz refresh rate

The Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G has a plush design and premium feel that masks its mid-range price tag. From the curved Gorilla Glass 6 display on the front to the glass back with subtle repeated Oppo monogram and glossy aluminum frame, the phone has a delicate but sturdy feel. 

It’s also very thin at 7.6mm, and pleasantly light at just 172g. The curved edges at the back lend a slight grip but we still recommend putting the bundled silicone case on the phone as it can get slippery.

(Image credit: Future)

The Reno 4 Pro 5G’s tall and slim profile makes it comfy to hold and use with one hand. You can easily reach the thoughtfully placed power button on the right side with your thumb (or index finger if you’re left handed). It rests just above the midway point for easy access. The volume rockers are found on the opposite side, placed slightly higher than the power button.

The top is a smooth, metal frame aside from a pair of antenna bands and a microphone hole, while the bottom houses a speaker grille, a USB-C port and a dual-SIM tray. Unlike its non-5G variant, the Reno 4 Pro 5G has no slots for SD cards for expanded storage and no headphone jack, which might be a deterrent for some.

The camera bumps on the phone’s back come in two parts: one forming the base around the triple lens setup and then the lenses protruding from the base. The bundled case offers little protection here so we’d be extra careful of accidental drops.

(Image credit: Future)

Over on the front, the Reno 4 Pro 5G houses a 6.5-inch AMOLED display with a tall 20:9 aspect ratio and a 1080 x 2400 resolution, which equates to 402 pixels per inch. Contrast and saturation are blown up on first boot up but can be tweaked by switching to Gentle Screen mode instead of Vivid within the display settings.

Other than that, the display is vibrant, rendering deep blacks and vivid colors that are easy to view across a wide range of viewing angles. However, it’s not the sharpest screen we’ve tested in terms of clarity. The phone has a very high peak brightness, which you’ll rarely need as the display is perfectly legible at mid to low brightness. 

The screen here is taller and thinner than what you’ll find on most phones, giving it a wide screen for media and gaming and more space for content when you’re scrolling vertically. It’s particularly useful when using split screen apps but not always comfortable when watching YouTube videos or content designed for 16:9, which results in the screen having massive black bars on either side.

The bezels around the curved display are thin and don’t get in the way of your viewing experience, giving the phone an almost all-screen look - save for the selfie-camera cut-out on the top left. It also has a 90Hz refresh rate, which is a welcome addition and makes scrolling through content a lot smoother

The display houses an in-screen fingerprint scanner, too, that unlocks the phone with swift speed and accuracy. Or you can opt for face unlock, which is just as fast and impressive.

(Image credit: Future)

Camera

  • 48MP main, 12MP ultra-wide, and 13MP telephoto cameras
  • Great night mode

The Reno 4 Pro 5G has two fewer cameras than its predecessors and a lower spec'd main snapper, but it gets the job done. The triple-lens array on the rear includes a 48MP f/1.7 IMX586 Sony sensor, a 12MP f/2.2 ultra-wide angle lens, and a 13MP f/2.4 telephoto lens that supports 5x hybrid optical zoom and 20x digital zoom. 

Photos taken with the Reno 4 Pro 5G generally turn out great with ample lighting and a steady hand. The main snapper can take 48MP images, although it's set to 12MP by default. Images shot at 48MP appear to be more detailed, allowing you to get decent quality prints or fine tune them further in a photo editing software.

(Image credit: Future)

The default 12MP images still have good level of detail but leaving AI on can add unnatural levels of contrast and color, which is an issue we ran into with the Reno 3 Pro. Though, HDR can help elevate an image by ensuring it picks up ample color and preventing images from appearing too dim or overexposed. 

With the ultra-wide lens you can cram in more of a landscape, but quality drops in comparison, as is to be expected. Images are muddier with a noticeable lack of detail and color. For wide landscape photos this isn’t an issue as turning HDR on can boost color composition, but for subjects that are closer, images just aren’t as crisp.

There’s also zoom capabilities here with the telephoto lens that can go in as close as 20x with digital zoom. The further you zoom in the more noise and grain appear in a photo.

Images are fine up to 2x and even 5x in certain scenarios, but beyond that images are just too grainy to be acceptable. Outdoors, the zoom fares better, but when you are indoors we’d stay away from using the zoom options as much as possible.

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Ultra-wide

Ultra-wide (Image credit: Future)
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Regular

Regular (Image credit: Future)
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5x Zoom

5x Zoom (Image credit: Future)
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10x Zoom

10x Zoom (Image credit: Future)
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20x Zoom

20x Zoom (Image credit: Future)

You can shoot videos on the phone at up to 4K resolution (30fps), though it’s set to 720p/30fps by default. Regular videos turn out really nice with the camera’s electronic image stabilization kicking in to smooth things out. It’s not perfect, but better than what you will find on some similar spec'd phones. 

For even smoother video, you can turn on Ultra Steady mode which removes as much shakiness from a video as it can, although it uses the 12MP ultra-wide angle lens to do so, allowing the software to crop the video to compensate for the excess shake. It’s a neat trick that allows for steadier video but the quality is obviously softer. 

The camera app on the Reno 4 Pro 5G remains largely unchanged from its predecessor. It employs a minimal interface similar to Huawei’s EMUI, with basic camera modes laid out in a neat row and extended settings tucked away behind the More tab. 

The app is faster and more responsive to use this time around, even with AI and HDR on. Shots are taken relatively quickly, with only Night Mode taking a longer time (more on that in a bit). There’s also a Pro mode for shutterbugs who want to fine tune settings to their liking.

To add more flair to your photo you can tap the conjoined circles icon on the top left of the camera app, which brings up 10 Instagram-style filters for you to play around with. Portrait mode is also here for all your bokeh needs, and it does really well to distinguish foreground from background with impressive accuracy.

The camera app’s Night Mode is the highlight feature of the Reno 4 Pro 5G. It does well to keep noise out and add details to darker areas that you wouldn’t normally get with the default photo mode, making a dramatic difference.

Image 1 of 4

Night Mode off

Night Mode off (Image credit: Future)
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Night Mode on

Night Mode on (Image credit: Future)
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Night Mode off

Night Mode off (Image credit: Future)
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Night Mode on

Night Mode on (Image credit: Future)

This is assuming you can keep your hands steady for the 5-10 seconds it takes the phone to capture shots in Night Mode. If you have shaky hands, you’ll still get a photo with ample lighting but details will be murkier and mushed together, creating an unpleasant effect. The quality of night shots also varies based on the environment and number of light sources present.

With Night Mode video, you can expect better lighting under low-lit scenarios but there’s a jarring effect when stabilization is turned on or if there’s too much movement. However, with careful handling and calmer subjects you can get decent results for sharing on your social platforms.

The selfie snapper on the front is a 32MP lens, similar to the one found on the OnePlus Nord. It takes detailed selfies with ample lighting but doesn’t fare so well with backlit selfies, where AI tends to smoothen out features heavily, making the picture look a tad unnatural.

The front cam also gets some stabilization tricks for recording smooth video while on the move. If you’re a blogger you’ll be able to record decent 1080p video at 30fps and head to Soloop, a pre-installed video editor, for cutting and publishing a quick video. The stabilization won’t be as smooth as what you’ll get with the rear cameras, but it's decent enough for quickly sharing on social media.

Software

  • Runs ColorOS 7.2 on top of Android 10
  • Minimal bloat and some handy features

The Reno 4 Pro 5G runs ColorOS 7.2, which is based on Android 10. It’s similar in functionality to other Oppo phones like the Reno 3 Pro and Find X2, but with a couple of added smarts.

The first is ‘Icon pull down’, a feature that squeezes all app icons on the screen to one corner with a simple swipe up gesture, allowing you to access hard to reach apps easily. It’s a handy feature that we found ourselves using quite often as the Reno 4 Pro 5G is rather tall and accessing apps towards the top can be a stretch. 

(Image credit: Future)

There’s no dedicated one-hand mode though, so while you can access apps, you’ll still have to pull down notifications and quick settings by swiping down from the top. 

Bloatware is thankfully limited. You get the usual suite of Google apps tucked away in a folder, and the only excess apps are the likes of Soloop (a video editing app), OPPO Labs, which includes experimental features like creating custom ringtones, a relaxation app, and a decision spinner. Aside from that there are only a handful of third-party apps that can be uninstalled quickly.

Another feature we really like is the Floating Bar, a smart sidebar that’s pinned to the edge of the screen and brings up a list of tools and apps you’d like to have quick access to by swiping on the bar from the edge of the display. The default list includes screenshots, File Manager and calculator, but you can edit the list and add as many as you want.

(Image credit: Future)

The OS also supports Always-On display, which shows you the time, date, battery percentage and notification icons at a glance. You also get Dolby Atmos support for enhanced audio along with some audio modes. This combined with the phone’s dual speaker setup makes for an enjoyable gaming experience and comes in handy when you want to hear music or watch a video with friends.

For more visual flare you can turn on Edge lighting, which lights up the curved edges of the screen in a slick animation to indicate notifications, which you can also see when the device is laid face down.

Navigating through the UI is a pleasant affair. Swiping through various screens feels fast and responsive, but there’s a rigid fluidity, which feels less refined than what we’ve seen from other Android OS skins like Samsung’s One UI and Huawei’s EMUI. 

Specs and performance

  • Mid-range Snapdragon 765G chipset
  • Solid performance but disappointing benchmarks
  • 256GB of storage and 5G

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G sits at the heart of the Reno 4 Pro 5G and is coupled with a decent 12GB of RAM, keeping things zippy and responsive. Apps load quickly and the phone can handle multi-tasking and intensive games with relative ease compared to most mid-range handsets.

We were able to play PUBG at Ultra HDR settings (the highest available for this handset) with no issues except for the occasional framerate drop. Other graphically intensive games like Shadowgun Legends and Asphalt 9 worked fairly well with very few stutters to break the experience. 

Gaming feels even better with the 90Hz refresh rate turned on for sleeker motion and graphics. And you can further tweak your gaming experience with 'Game Space',  which can boost gaming performance for supported games (only PUBG during our testing) and lets you block notification appearances on the screen for distraction-free gaming.

As for raw power and benchmarks, the Reno Pro 5G fared averagely with a 614 single-core, and a 1,803 multi-core score on Geekbench 5. That’s lower than what you’ll get with the similar priced OnePlus 7T, but benchmarks aren’t everything.

(Image credit: Future)

We saw no noticeable performance issues aside from the odd app crash and found the phone could usually handle intensive workloads. Meaning for most users, the performance here is more than enough for regular daily use - and then some.

No microSD card slot on the phone means you won’t be able to expand its built-in storage - approximately 235GB after system use. While that’s plenty for most, you could deplete that over time if you like to hoard media, take plenty of videos or play games that take up a lot of storage.

There’s also no headphone jack, so you’ll have to rely on the bundled USB-C earphones or find a pair of Bluetooth ones (or an adapter) for all your audio needs. The speakers on the phone can be found on the top and bottom. They get plenty loud and are decent enough for listening to your favorite songs or watching a video with a group of friends. But for finer audio you’ll want to find a decent headset.

You get 5G support with the Reno Pro 5G (obviously) meaning you can take advantage of next-generation network speeds as and when they become available near you. Our review unit was quick to find 5G signals when they became available and remained latched on to them with stable connections.

Battery life

  • 4,000mAh battery comfortably lasts a day or more
  • 65W charging is very fast
  • No wireless charging

Oppo wants to rid you of low-battery anxiety and to that end has included its best in class 65W SuperVOOC 2.0 flash charging tech, which can take the phone's 4,000mAh battery from zero to half in just over eleven minutes, and get it fully charged in just thirty minutes, which is impressive.

With moderate to heavy use, you’ll easily get a day’s worth of usage out of the Reno 4 Pro 5G. We pushed the phone hard with continuous web and social media surfing, video streaming at high brightness, gaming, and Spotify in the background, and only found ourselves reaching for the charger at the end of the day.

(Image credit: Future)

Screen brightness and gaming seem to have the most effect on battery drain, so if you keep that in check, you can eke more battery life out of the phone. There are a couple of power saving modes in battery settings that help you conserve power further like the Super Power Saving Mode that lets you use only 6 selected apps and Super Night-time Standby that consumes as little as 2% battery through the night for about 8 hours.

The battery’s performance was reflected in our standard TechRadar tests involving playing a 90-minute Full HD video at max brightness with accounts syncing in the background. Our fully charged Reno 4 Pro 5G unit dropped 14% battery during the test, which is decent for a phone in this price range.

Unfortunately, there’s no wireless charging on board, which would’ve helped the Reno 4 Pro 5G stand out in the crowded mid-range segment, but the inclusion of very fast charging makes up for this shortcoming.

Should I buy the Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G?

(Image credit: Future)

Buy it if...

You want a premium design with a comfortable form factor
The Oppo Reno 4 Pro 5G is a slick-looking phone with a plush feel thanks to its glass and metal build. Its tall and slim profile makes it sit nicely in your hands, with curved edges around the back giving it a comfy grip for one-handed operation.

You want an AMOLED display with a tall aspect ratio
If you watch a lot of media on your phone you’ll love the Reno 4 Pro 5G’s vibrant screen, as with deep blacks and its 20:9 aspect ratio it's great for widescreen videos. Perfect for movie marathons.

You want to take decent night-time videos and photos
The night mode on the Reno 4 Pro 5G makes a dramatic difference from the default photo mode. It’s not perfect and requires steady hands and patience, but you’ll be rewarded with well-lit photos with better details.

Don’t buy it if...

You want high-end performance
The Snapdragon 765G is a decent chipset that can handle most tasks, but it does have its limits and for this price you can get your hands on a phone with beefier performance, like the OnePlus 7T or the Samsung Galaxy S20 Fan Edition.

You don’t like tall phones
If you have smaller hands or are used to wider screens, then you might find the Reno 4 Pro 5G difficult to handle with one hand since the top half of the screen becomes tricky to use.

You are looking for value 
The Reno 4 Pro 5G is a capable mid-ranger, but if you want a phone with similar performance you can find one that is much cheaper, such as the Samsung Galaxy A71 5G.

First reviewed: October 2020