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Oppo Find X3 Pro Camera review: Great from ultra-wide to short tele

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131
camera

The Oppo Find X3 Pro is the brand’s top-end flagship for 2021, built to compete with the best high-end devices, and with a price that positions it in the ultra-premium segment. Phone features include a 6.7-inch AMOLED QHD+ display with 120 Hz refresh rate, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chipset with 12 GB RAM and 256 GB of storage, and fast 65W SuperVOOC charging.

As you’d expect, this ultra-premium device comes equipped with plenty of cameras, too. There’s a quad-cam on the rear, including a 50 MP standard-wide main camera, a 50 MP ultra-wide, a 13 MP tele-lens module for 5x “hybrid optical zoom” shots, and a 3 MP microscope camera (not covered by our test protocol).

For video, the Find X3 Pro shoots 4K footage at both 60/30 fps with video stabilization, boasts a video zoom feature at the 4K 30 fps setting, and you can drop the resolution for super slo-mo effects at 1080p/240 fps or 720p/480 fps.

Let’s find out how Oppo’s 2021 flagship shapes up for smartphone photography as we break down the scores and compare image samples across all the attributes we test.

Key camera specifications:

  • Primary: 50 MP 1/1.56″ Sony IMX 766 sensor, f/1.8-aperture lens, PDAF and OIS
  • Ultra-wide: 50 MP 1/1.56″ Sony IMX 766 sensor, f/2.2-aperture lens with 110.3° field of view and PDAF
  • Tele: 13 MP sensor, f/2.4-aperture lens
  • Microscope: 3 MP sensor, 60x magnification, FHD video, f/3.0-aperture lens
  • LED flash
  • Ambient light & flicker detection system
  • Video: 2160p/60 fps, 1080p/240 fps, 720p/480 fps, video zoom

About DXOMARK Camera tests: For scoring and analysis in our smartphone camera reviews, DXOMARK engineers capture and evaluate over 3000 test images and more than 2.5 hours of video both in controlled lab environments and in natural indoor and outdoor scenes, using the camera’s default settings. This article is designed to highlight the most important results of our testing. For more information about the DXOMARK Camera test protocol, click here. More details on how we score smartphone cameras are available here.

Test summary


Oppo Find X3 Pro
131
camera
139
photo
71
zoom
111
video

Pros

  • Vivid and pleasant color in most photos and videos
  • Good detail in all photos and videos
  • Reliable preview image
  • Good texture and noise compromise in ultra-wide photos
  • Accurate depth estimation in bokeh photos
  • Extended dynamic range in night photos
  • Fast and smooth video autofocus
  • Mostly effective video stabilization

Cons

  • Photo exposure instabilities in high-contrast scenes
  • Video exposure adaptation instabilities
  • Underexposed low-light videos
  • Slow autofocus in low-light photos
  • White balance errors in low-light photos and videos
  • Luminance noise often visible in photos
  • Strong noise in low-light videos

Securing an excellent overall score of 131, the Oppo Find X3 Pro eases effortlessly into the upper echelons of our smartphone photography rankings. It scores a point better than the Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max at 130, and matches the score achieved by the slightly more affordable Vivo X50 Pro+. A little daylight remains between Oppo’s latest flagship and our current top two devices, the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra at 143 and the Huawei Mate 40 Pro+ at 139, with some key differences among the devices in our analysis. Nevertheless, the Oppo Find X3 Pro remains one of the best devices we’ve had the pleasure of testing.

The Oppo Find X3 Pro delivers nice exposure and color in almost all images shot with the primary camera.

Oppo’s 2021 ultra-premium handset does very well in the Photo category, where its score of 139 currently ranks 4th. By and large it posts excellent scores across the range of Photo test attributes, with particularly strong results for color, autofocus, texture, bokeh, and artifacts. So photographers can expect vivid and pleasant color, good detail retention, and accurate target exposures from the primary camera in almost all lighting conditions.

It’s not infallible, with occasional exposure instabilities resulting in blown highlights in bright light, or clipped shadows in low light. But even so, dynamic range remains good and correct exposure on faces in tricky lighting conditions is an additional plus point.

Some mild noise is usually visible in photos, including in outdoor HDR scenes and in lower light conditions, but signal interference is generally managed well compared to other devices. In very low light, autofocus isn’t quite as snappy as we’d like and white balance occasionally misses the mark, but those quibbles aside, Photo image quality is very high.

The device also fares well in the specialty areas of bokeh and night photography. Bokeh mode was tested at 2x magnification. Overall results are good, with accurate subject segmentation and warm but pleasant color; and although some noise is visible, it’s uniformly distributed across the sharp and blurred areas.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, bokeh shot, accurate depth estimation
Oppo Find X3 Pro, bokeh shot, warm but pleasant color

The Find X3 Pro also does an impressive job on low-light cityscapes, where target exposures are accurate, with extended dynamic range, good color, and lots of detail. Autofocus can fail shooting night portraits, and some motion blur and unnatural skin tone rendering is evident when using flash, but on the whole its night photography credentials are good, especially on those cityscapes.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, impressive cityscapes at night… 

…with wide dynamic range and good color  

The Oppo Find X3 Pro achieves a good but not amazing score of 71 in our Zoom category, where we evaluate ultra-wide and tele-lens shots.

The ultra-wide module is the stronger performer, with outstanding texture and noise results when compared to many other ultra-premium devices. Exposure and color are as nice as we observed on the main camera, too. We measured the ultra-wide camera at a focal length of 15 mm, which is a useful range for landscape or architecture.

Where the Find X3 Pro lags behind the very best devices at the top of the leader board is for tele-lens shots. Its 5x hybrid optical zoom solution offers acceptable detail in both close- and medium-range zoom shots, but zoom HDR capabilities are limited and noise is often visible. Push the magnification a little harder to long-range and resolution is also fairly limited, resulting in a noticeable loss of detail compared to devices with a 120 mm-equivalent (5x optical) tele-lens like the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, long-range zoom, limited level of detail and high noise
Oppo Find X3 Pro, ultra-wide angle, nice exposure and color, well-controlled distortion correction, good detail with low noise

With an excellent Video score of 111, the Oppo Find X3 Pro also maintains its position as a top-ranked device for moving images. The Find X3 Pro defaults to the ultra-wide module for video, but we tested it using the main camera at 4K/30fps resolution, which achieves the best compromise between stabilization, exposure, texture, and noise. You can 60fps select manually, which will help improve video quality in bright light, but the Find X3 Pro doesn’t offer an automatic variable frame rate like we saw on the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra. (This is a handy feature for achieving the best video quality across a range of lighting situations without any user intervention, and it would be nice to see Oppo incorporate it in the future.)

Video strengths include fast and accurate autofocus with smooth tracking and effective stabilization in most scenarios. There’s a little jello here and there, as well as a slight difference in frame sharpness in low light, but walking and handheld videos are generally stabilized well. Video details are generally nicely preserved and noise is well controlled outdoors, with a little temporal and localized interference evident when the light levels drop.

Video exposure is good, but some steps and instabilities during adaptation are visible; slight clipping occurs in bright light; and some videos in low light are underexposed, although low-light exposure improves when a face is detected. On the whole, video color is accurate and pleasant, too. Just watch out for instabilities in low light, where white balance adaptation can be slow and color casts can be visible.

Below you can find a detailed analysis and image samples for all Photo, Zoom, and Video sub-attributes, as well as comparisons with some of the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s key competitors, including the Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, the Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra, and the OnePlus 9 Pro.

Photo

The Oppo Find X3 Pro achieves a Photo score of 139. In this section, we take a closer look at each sub-attribute and compare image quality against competitors.

Exposure and Contrast

Oppo Find X3 Pro

92

111

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (111)

In these tests we analyze target exposure, contrast, and dynamic range, including repeatability across a series of images. Tests are undertaken in a wide range of light conditions, including backlit scenes and low light down to 1 lux. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s exposure performance in a high-contrast outdoor scene compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, fairly wide dynamic range, only slight highlight clipping
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, preserves the highlights a little better
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, shadows and highlights slightly clipped

Color

Oppo Find X3 Pro

103

107

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max (107)

In these tests we analyze color rendering, skin tones, white balance, and color shading, including repeatability across a series of images. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s color performance in outdoor lighting compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, vivid and pleasant color with accurate skin tones
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, vivid and pleasant color with accurate skin tones
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, vivid and pleasant color with accurate skin tones

Autofocus

Oppo Find X3 Pro

104

109

Asus Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders
Best: Asus Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders (109)

In these tests we analyze autofocus accuracy and shooting time, including repeatability, in the lab. We test focus failures, depth of field, and tracking of moving subjects using perceptual analysis of real-life images.

This graph shows the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s autofocus performance while handholding the device in our lab analysis at a light level of 5 lux.

The Oppo Find X3 Pro’s, autofocus is accurate and usually fast to lock on except in very low light, where focusing speeds can be a little erratic.

Texture

Oppo Find X3 Pro

108

111

Xiaomi Mi 11
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 (111)

In these tests we analyze texture on faces and objects, including objects in motion, in a range of light conditions, using several lab test setups and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

This graph shows the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s texture measurements compared to the competition.

The Oppo Find X3 Pro recorded a high level of detail in most lighting conditions in the lab.

Noise

Oppo Find X3 Pro

79

99

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (99)

In these tests we analyze noise on faces and objects, including objects in motion, in a range of light conditions, using several lab test setups and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s noise performance in an outdoor scene compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, outdoor scene
Oppo Find X3 Pro, crop: slight noise visible
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, outdoor scene
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, crop: slightly visible noise
OnePlus 9 Pro, outdoor scene
OnePlus 9 Pro, crop: more visible noise

Bokeh

Oppo Find X3 Pro

70

80

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (80)

For these tests we switch to the camera’s bokeh or portrait mode and analyze depth estimation, bokeh shape, blur gradient, and repeatability, as well as all other general image quality attributes mentioned above. The score is derived from perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s bokeh simulation under outdoor conditions compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, accurate depth estimation
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, accurate depth estimation, nice contrast
OnePlus 9 Pro, accurate depth estimation, lack of detail

Night

Oppo Find X3 Pro

60

82

Huawei Mate 40 Pro+
Best: Huawei Mate 40 Pro+ (82)

In these tests we shoot a selection of images in pitch-black darkness as well as with city lights in the background providing some illumination. We shoot sample images with the camera at default settings in both flash-auto and flash-off modes. We analyze all image quality attributes but we pay particular attention to exposure, autofocus, and color. We do not test night modes that have to be activated manually.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s night performance in auto-flash mode compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, auto-flash mode, good exposure with visible motion blur on the face
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra, auto-flash mode, low exposure but less motion blur on the face
OnePlus 9 Pro, auto-flash mode, low exposure but less motion blur on the face

Artifacts

Oppo Find X3 Pro

71

75

Google Pixel 4
Best: Google Pixel 4 (75)

In these tests we check images for optical artifacts such as vignetting, flare, lens softness in the corner, distortion, and chromatic aberrations, as well as for processing artifacts such as ghosting and fusion errors, hue shift, and ringing.

This sample shows ringing artifacts on the Oppo Find X3 Pro.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, artifacts
Oppo Find X3 Pro, crop; ringing along high contrast edges

Preview

Oppo Find X3 Pro

69

80

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max (80)

In these tests we analyze the image quality of the preview image and the differences between preview images and captured images, particularly in terms of exposure, dynamic range, and bokeh effect. We also check the smoothness of the field-of-view changes on the preview image when zooming with both buttons or when using the pinch-zoom gesture.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s preview performance under 1000 lux lighting in the lab.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, preview image
Oppo Find X3 Pro, final image: similar exposure to preview

Zoom

The Oppo Find X3 Pro achieves a Zoom score of 71. The Zoom score includes the tele and wide sub-scores. In this section, we take a closer look at how these sub-scores were achieved and compare zoom image quality against competitors.

Wide

Oppo Find X3 Pro

48

57

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (57)

In these tests we analyze the performance of the ultra-wide camera at several focal lengths from 12 to 20 mm. We look at all image quality attributes, but we pay particular attention to such artifacts as chromatic aberrations, lens softness, and distortion.

These samples show the performance of the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s ultra-wide camera in daylight conditions compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, excellent detail right to the edges
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, wide field of view
OnePlus 9 Pro, strong noise visible

Tele

Oppo Find X3 Pro

87

140

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (140)

In these tests we analyze all image quality attributes at focal lengths from approximately 40 to 300 mm, paying particular attention to texture and detail. The score is derived from a number of objective measurements in the lab and perceptual analysis of real-life images.

These samples show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s tele performance indoors using a medium-range zoom setting.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, medium-range zoom
Oppo Find X3 Pro, crop: low detail and visible noise
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, medium-range zoom
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, crop: good detail, low noise
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, medium-range zoom
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max, crop: lack of detail, noise

Video

The Oppo Find X3 Pro achieves a Video score of 111. A device’s overall Video score is derived from its performance and results across a range of attributes in the same way as the Photo score. In this section, we take a closer look at these sub-scores and compare video image quality against competitors.

We analyze the same image quality attributes in our Video tests as for still images, such as exposure, color, texture, and noise, but we also include such temporal aspects as speed, smoothness and stability of exposure, white balance, and autofocus transitions.

NOTE: The sample video clips in this section are best viewed at 4K resolution. 

Exposure and Contrast

Oppo Find X3 Pro

85

118

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max (118)

This graph shows the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video target exposure performance compared to the competition.

The Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video target exposure is a little low under dim lighting conditions.

Color

Oppo Find X3 Pro

94

105

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (105)

These video stills show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video color in outdoor lighting compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, accurate white balance and vivid color
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, well rendered color with a warm color cast
OnePlus 9 Pro, good saturation with a slight warm color cast

Autofocus

Oppo Find X3 Pro

105

109

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max (109)

These sample clips show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video autofocus performance in outdoor lighting compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, smooth autofocus tracking
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, smooth tracking
OnePlus 9 Pro, focus failures

Texture

Oppo Find X3 Pro

91

97

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Best: Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra (97)

These video stills show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video texture under 300 lux lighting conditions in the lab compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, video still
Oppo Find X3 Pro, crop: high level of detail
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, video still
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, crop: high level of detail
OnePlus 9 Pro, video still
OnePlus 9 Pro, crop: fine details are lost

Noise

Oppo Find X3 Pro

87

105

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max
Best: Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max (105)

These video stills show the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video noise performance in low light compared to the competition.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, video still
Oppo Find X3 Pro, crop: coarse localized noise is visible
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra, video still
Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra, crop: less visible noise
OnePlus 9 Pro, video still
OnePlus 9 Pro, crop: slightly better than the Find X3 Pro

Artifacts

Oppo Find X3 Pro

82

94

Oppo Find X2 Pro
Best: Oppo Find X2 Pro (94)

For video artifacts, we check for the same kinds of artifacts mentioned in the Photo section, along with such video-specific artifacts as frame rate variation in different light conditions, judder effect, and moving artifacts (artifacts such as aliasing, color quantization, and flare can often be more intrusive when moving than in a still image).

This graph shows the advantage of an adaptive frame rate that automatically increases its fps in good lighting to improve image quality. The Find X3 Pro dropped points here due to the lower frame rate over 100 lux compared to devices like the Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra. Of course you can select 60 fps manually, but it’s better if a device implements an effective algorithm that does it for you.

OnePlus 9 Pro: 4K 60 fps is possible, but like the Xiaomi, the OnePlus device adapts automatically.

Stabilization

Oppo Find X3 Pro

101

102

Huawei P50 Pro
Best: Huawei P50 Pro (102)

In these tests we analyze residual motion when handholding the camera during recording, as well as when walking and running with the camera. We also look for stabilization artifacts such as jello effect, sharpness differences between frames, and frame shift (abrupt changes of framing).

These sample clips compare the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s video stabilization in outdoor conditions.

Oppo Find X3 Pro, effective stabilization
Huawei Mate 40 Pro+, effective stabilization
OnePlus 9 Pro, effective stabilization

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