The Nord 3: OnePlus' latest offering impresses with stunning display

Exploring the Nord 3's display, battery, and camera capabilities

oneplus nord 3

OnePlus’ Nord series has been witnessing a lot of action, both in terms of phones as well as earphones. And now we have the Nord 3, the flagship lineup of the Nord series smartphones. Priced at Rs. 33,999 for the base model and Rs. 37,999 for the highest model, let’s see where it excels and where it falls short.


Display: You get a 6.74-inch (2772x1240) 10-bit AMOLED display that supports up to 120Hz refresh rates and HDR10+ playback. The display is truly one of the better ones in this price range when it comes to colors and contrast, provided you choose the right color mode from Settings according to your preference. It boasts high sharpness and contrast, making it great for viewing high-resolution images and videos. HDR playback is decent too, especially for in-app streaming on platforms like Netflix, though there is certainly some room for improvement in terms of shadows and extra brightness. The 120Hz refresh rate works more reliably when you select a high refresh rate under display settings instead of using the auto-refresh option. I also really liked the Eye Comfort mode, which has been one of the better implementations of this feature on smartphones, making it comfortable for reading or navigating throughout the day.

Battery life: The phone features a 5,000mAh battery and comes with an 80-watt SuperVooc (Endurance Edition) charger, along with a USB Type-C to Type-A cable in the box. It charges the phone from 1% to full in around 35-40 minutes, which is pretty quick. I found the phone to last me a day quite frequently, and rarely did I have to charge the phone twice within the same day, even on moderate to heavy working days.

Performance and software: The Nord 3 uses MediaTek’s 9000 Dimensity chipset (octa-core processor up to 3.1Ghz, Mali-G710 MP10 GPU), paired with 16GB of LPDDR5X RAM and 256GB UFS3.1 storage (the base model comes in an 8GB + 128GB configuration). It runs on Android 13-based Oxygen OS 13.1 with the July security patch installed. The phone didn't show any hiccups or issues during daily tasks; it can handle scrolling, switching between apps, and resuming apps seamlessly. You can play games on it, such as BGMI and F1 Mobile Racing, but only at 60FPS, which is one of the limitations of this OnePlus device. Speaking of software, there are hardly any third-party apps installed, and the few existing ones can be uninstalled too.


Design and thermals: It’s a bit of a mixed bag here – the phone has a nice frosty matte-finish back with Gorilla Glass 5 and curved edges with the triple camera system housed in separate glass cutouts next to the two LED flash modules. It has symmetric and slim bezels around the display with a punch-hole in the top-middle. I tried it in the Tempest Gray color, and it also comes in Misty Green. You can immediately see the phone has a blocky rectangular design and is top-heavy, with the weight not spread evenly. Also, the phone tends to heat up a bit every now and then during different tasks – quick charging, video calling, and gaming for about 20 minutes or so. There’s a noticeable rise in the temperature of the back panel when the phone is under such loads, which is a bit disappointing since the company advertises this phone’s cool and reliable heat thermals in its marketing campaigns.

Camera: The phone sports a triple camera system on the back – a 50MP (f/1.8) main camera, an 8MP (f/2.2) ultra-wide camera, and a 2MP (f/2.4) macro camera. There’s a dual LED flash and another single LED flash to go with it. The photos from the phone have good dynamic range when shots are taken standing still. It captures high contrast and detailed shots, even in low-light conditions, and shots can at times be well-stitched without too much noise if your subject isn’t moving. The camera can struggle a bit with its color reproduction of skin tones and overexposure even when used outdoors in decent lighting, which we have seen from OnePlus’ cameras in the past. The 16MP (f/2.4) front-facing camera is adequately sufficient for social media use and video calls, but you might want to tone down filters and beauty modes as per your choice. You can shoot 4K videos at up to 60FPS with the rear camera and 1080p videos at up to 30FPS using the front camera.

Verdict: The Nord 3, priced at Rs. 33,999 and Rs. 37,999, offers a lot of good experiences at its price point. While the highest model isn’t significantly cheaper than the company’s own 11r, which I really liked and would still recommend if you can spend around Rs. 40,000 or a bit more, the Nord 3 is a solid choice for those looking for a phone around Rs. 35,000. It doesn’t come with too many third-party apps pre-installed, provides a great battery experience and display, and offers a decent set of cameras. The Nord 3 is a pretty good choice to consider for an Android device, especially if you aren’t particular about playing games at very high refresh rates.

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