I try a lot of smartphones, and I like it when one gives me a good feeling the moment I get it out of the box and start using it. The Oppo Reno 10 managed to do exactly that, with its unusual camera module design, curved screen, and sparkly, yet modern color scheme.
But after playing with the software and taking it out to snap some photos, have I continued to warm to the Reno 10?
Out taking photos with the Reno 10
Oppo’s Reno series has long had a reputation for delivering feature-packed cameras at a reasonable price (see phones like the Reno 10x Zoom for evidence), so it’s interesting to see a 32-megapixel telephoto camera next to the 64MP main camera on the Oppo Reno 10. However, it’s not going to rival the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra for optical zoom capabilities, as the telephoto is primarily designed for portrait shots and only delivers a 2x hybrid optical zoom for regular photos.
The telephoto-for-portraits feature has also been seen on the OnePlus 11, and it’s the same Sony IMX709 camera used on that phone that you’ll find on the Reno 10. There are two portrait zoom settings, 1x and 2x, and in my brief tests, the 2x mode lacks detail and suffers from poor performance in less-than-ideal lighting. The standard 1x mode is better, but it’s still obviously a digital portrait effect when you do take a photo.
Interestingly, you can manually alter the aperture between f/1.4 and f/16, which can help reduce any artificial effect. I often use this feature on the iPhone 14 Pro, where it’s available in the editing suite. If you take a lot of photos of other people, then you may get some value from the telephoto portrait mode, and perhaps more extensive testing will reveal greater joys, but for now, I would rather have a more capable zoom mode without the portrait effect.
In the Reno 10’s camera app, there’s a shortcut to a 2x hybrid optical zoom and a 5x digital zoom, and the 5x doesn’t do a terrible job considering it isn’t an optical mode. The other option is a wide-angle, but it’s a disappointing 8MP camera that unsurprisingly lacks detail. The main 64MP camera takes great photos, certainly in the optimal conditions I’ve seen during my tests. It doesn’t have the delicious character of the OnePlus 11’s main camera and can get the contrast and exposure wrong in difficult lighting sometimes, but there’s enough ability to be creative with it.
Curvy screens are the best
The camera has been fun to use, and I like it a great deal. The lenses are set inside an unusual pill-shaped module on the back of the phone, which certainly sets the Reno 10 apart from other phones, and it’s a theme continued across the entire Reno 10 family, which also consists of a Reno 10 Pro and a Reno 10 Pro+.
My test phone is in the aptly named Silvery Gray color, but an Icy Blue color is also available, which has a cool gradient effect to it. The Silvery Gray has a lot of silver flake in the finish, and it sparkles in the sunlight, adding some fun to what is otherwise the obvious “safe” color choice. Oppo has left behind the flat slab shape it used for the Reno 8 Pro and gone for a lovely, curvy screen and body here; it looks futuristic and cool.
The Oppo Reno 10 is also very thin and light, just 7.99mm and 185 grams, but this doesn’t mean it’s skimping on the screen. It’s a whopping 6.7-unch AMOLED panel with a 120Hz refresh rate and a 93% screen-to-body ratio. Out of the box, the phone defaults to an adaptive refresh rate, but I found it didn’t kick in when I wanted it to, likely in response to Oppo’s always-intrusive power management. I forced a 120Hz refresh rate, and the screen is wonderfully smooth all the time. The 500 nits brightness is average, but the boost feature to 800 nits meant it remained visible outside in the sun.
What about gaming and the battery?
I love holding the thin, lightweight, and curvy Oppo Reno 10, but what about using it? I have not put my SIM inside yet, so my experience is somewhat limited, but I can see that Oppo’s ColorOS 13 hasn’t changed dramatically since I last used it. There’s a new Multi Screen Connect feature that links the phone with other Oppo devices, an IR Remote Control feature, and some new widgets — including one for Spotify for the always-on screen.
Frustratingly, ColorOS insisted on automatically installing 14 games after setup without giving me the chance to refuse them. Pair this with the battery-saving low refresh rate, and the Reno 10 doesn’t provide the most welcoming experience. Performance comes from a MediaTek Dimensity 7050 processor (which performed well in the Realme 11 Pro+) and 8GB of RAM, with the choice of either 128GB or 256GB of internal storage space.
I played Asphalt 9: Legends with Oppo’s “Pro Gamer” mode active, and while there were a few stutters when it was traveling very fast, it was perfectly playable and the phone didn’t show any sign of getting hot. The stereo speakers sound good too. A 5,000mAh battery should give the Reno 10 plenty of standby time, and included in the box is a 67-watt SuperVOOC fast charger, which should recharge the cell fully in about 50 minutes. Sadly, there’s no wireless charging.
All at a great price, with a catch
Oppo does not release its smartphones in the U.S., but it announced the Reno 10 series in India a few days before announcing the Reno 10 5G in the U.K., where it will be available starting August 24 through the EE network and Oppo’s own store.
It’s competitively priced at 399 British pounds, which is approximately $505 U.S. This prices it in-between the OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite and OnePlus Nord 3, slightly less than the Samsung Galaxy A54, and about the same as the Google Pixel 7a.
The Oppo Reno 10 is a good deal
When I opened the box and handled the Oppo Reno 10 for the first time, I had a good feeling about it. I’m happy to say this continued after using it for a little while. It’s hard to argue with the price, and it’s great to see a reasonably priced phone deliver desirable features like a 120Hz refresh rate, fast charging, 5G, and decent gaming credentials. You’ll have to make concessions about water resistance and wireless charging, though.
If you’re unwilling to spend a huge amount of money on your new phone, the Oppo Reno 10 is one of those great value devices you’re always hoping to find. It’s worth checking out alongside the Pixel 7a and the Galaxy A54.