OPPO A52 Review

Aside from the OPPO Reno series which is centered on the upper-midrange market, the OPPO A series is making its space in the lower midrange market between Rs 15,000 and Rs 20,000. The OPPO A52 is the newest entrant in its A-series alongside the OPPO A12, priced at Rs 16,999 and features quad cameras, punch-hole design, and a bigger battery. Take a look at our OPPO A52 review.

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OPPO A52 Specifications

  • Display: 6.5-inch TFT LCD display, FHD+ resolution (2400×1080 pixels), 90.50% screen-to-body ratio
  • Software: ColorOS 7.1 based on Android 10
  • CPU: 11nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SoC
  • GPU: Adreno 610 GPU
  • RAM: 6 GB LPDDR4X RAM
  • Storage: 128 GB internal storage; expandable up to 256 GB via microSD card
  • Main Camera: Quad Cameras (12 MP + 8 MP + 2 MP + 2 MP)
    12 MP f/1.8 aperture camera
    8 MP f/2.2 119-degree ultra-wide-angle lens
    2 MP f/2.4 depth sensor
    2 MP f/2.4 macro camera
  • Selfie Camera: 16 MP f/2.0 aperture
  • Others: Side-mounted fingerprint sensor, 3.5 mm audio jack, FM Radio
  • Connectivity Options: Dual 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5, GPS/GLONASS/Beidou, and USB Type-C port
  • Battery: 5,000 mAh battery, 18W fast charging
  • Price: Rs 16,999

Design, Display, & Build

The OPPO A52 features a 3D Quad-curve design, the backside offers a stylish 3D texture in a glossy-back plastic body. It comes in two colors, Twilight Black and Steam White, this is the Twilight Black color variant. The design is quite neat, the curves make it easy to hold the phone.

On the front, you see a punch-hole camera design which gives the phone a 90.50% screen-to-body ratio. It features a 6.5-inch TFT LCD with Full HD+ resolution (2400 x 1080 pixels).

On the back of the phone, the OPPO A52 equips a quad-camera setup with a single LED flash, while the fingerprint scanner is located on the right side embedded on the power button, no on the rear side. The fingerprint scanner works fast, it picks up fingerprints rapidly.

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The left side has a triple-slot SIM tray that supports a dedicated microSD card while the other two slots are for dual 4G SIMs. The left side has two separate volume keys while the right side has a power-key that doubles as a fingerprint scanner.

The bottom has a Type-C USB port, this is probably the first OPPO A-series smartphone to come with a USB Type-C port. You also get a loudspeaker at the bottom, 3.5 mm jack, and a microphone. The OPPO A52 comes with stereo speakers for an immersive sound experience.

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No Fingerprint Scanner On The Back, But On The Power Key

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Fingerprint Scanner Embedded On The Power Key

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Software & User Interface

Like all of the OPPO phones, the A52 uses a ColorOS user interface on top however a newer version. The OPPO A52 runs on the latest ColorOS 7 based on Android 10 with a security patch dated 5th May 2020.

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Hardware, Performance, & Gaming

Under the hood, the OPPO A52 is powered by the 11nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 octa-core SoC alongwith Adreno 610 GPU. Furthermore, the device has 6 GB LPDDR4X RAM and 128 GB internal storage and it’s the only variant available in the country. The storage can be expanded via a dedicated microSD card slot.

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On the performance side, the Snapdragon 665 could offer decent performance, however, given the price, there are smartphones with a slightly better CPU, the Snapdragon 712 and Snapdragon 730G are far better if you are performance-oriented. Also, the upcoming mid-range smartphones will be using the new Snapdragon 765G SoC with an integrated 5G modem.

We performed some benchmarks on the phone and here are the results below on the Geekbench 5 CPU and GPU benchmark and AndroBench storage benchmark.

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On the gaming front, the device offers an Adreno 610 which is good for casual gaming, if you are into gaming such as PUBG Mobile, Call of Duty Mobile or some higher-end games, we suggest you pick a more powerful GPU phone such as the Snapdragon 730G powered phones that has Adreno 618.

Games typically run under medium settings, however, if you want to run games in better graphics, pick better CPU and GPU smartphones like realme X2, Motorola One Fusion+, POCO X2, and similar.

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Cameras

What initially seems to be the main highlight of the phone is its quad cameras, the OPPO A52 features a quad camera setup on the back. While most smartphones in this range equip a 48 MP or 64 MP main camera, the OPPO A52 comes with a standard 12 MP f/1.7 main camera combined with the rest three cameras, 8 MP f/2.2 wide-angle, 2 MP f/2.4 macro, and 2 MP f/2.4 depth sensor.

When we look at the cameras, the camera configuration is quite mainstream. Back when we used to see smartphones with 12 MP cameras before the smartphone industry jumped into 48 MP sensors, the 12 MP sensors were popular. You may not see 12 MP cameras in the year 2020, OPPO chooses not to stick with the current 48 MP or 64 MP trend. On the other hand, there’s the 16 MP selfie camera in a punch-hole design.

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The camera modes available on the phone are familiar to the most ColorOS powered phones, nothing new here. You get a Portrait mode, Expert mode, Panorama, Slow Motion (120fps), Sticker, and Time-Lapse.

There’s no dedicated Macro mode on the phone, you have to rely on the AI and autofocusing while taking photos to enter the Macro mode. This might be a tad slower as you think, by the time you take a spectacular closeup shot, the bee will be flown away.

You can shoot in 4K at 30fps only, no 60fps video. You also don’t get the video bokeh, macro camera, and other features we saw in the Reno3 Pro. No optical zoom or telelens is available on the phone, which means you need to rely on the camera’s digital zooming capabilities.

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To see how the camera performs, here are some samples we took from the OPPO A52 camera.

OPPO A52 Camera Samples

Battery Life

The OPPO A52 is powered by a 5,000 mAh battery with support for 18W fast charging. The battery performance is stellar thanks to the power-saving CPU and ColorOS 7 optimizations. The overall battery runtime runs up to 2 days on average use, you can extend the battery longer by using the power saving options.

Moving to its 18W fast charging, the phone can charge 50% from zero in about 45 minutes. You can expect it to charge fully under 90 minutes.

Verdict

The OPPO A52 primarily competes with the Samsung Galaxy M31, Redmi Note 9 Pro Max, realme 6 Pro, and the new Motorola One Fusion+ at the given price tag. Making a choice in this price range isn’t quite easy right now as you see a number of good smartphones coming from different brands.

If we talk about the OPPO A52, it doesn’t quite live up to the competition, you might get better quad cameras, a slightly better performance, 90 Hz refresh rate, as well as AMOLED screen at this price.

Nevertheless, the reliable battery life, stereo sound for a great audio experience, 3D curved design with punch-hole design, and the new ColorOS 7 perks could make it noteworthy.

Strength

  • Stylish 3D design
  • Reliable battery life (5,000 mAh)
  • ColorOS 7 perks
  • 18W fast charging support
  • Dedicated microSD card support

Weakness

  • Slow-motion limited to 120fps, No 60fps 1080p video recording
  • Competitors offer 90 Hz display, 48 MP camera