I’ve been using OPPO phones for a long time, from way back when they were slow and laggy to now when they are some of the best smartphones on the market.  In fact, the phone that currently has a permanent place in my pocket is an OPPO Find X5 Pro, their latest ultra-premium smartphone.

Although OPPO has made great strides in recent years with their ultra-premium smartphones, the mid-range is where they’ve made their name in Australia.  They have always offered great build quality along with decent specs and great value for money – the main problem has been choosing which one you want with so many in their stable.

The latest OPPO mid-range smartphone is the Reno8 Lite 5G which retails at a comfortable $599.  OPPO sent it to use to test out and in the end we came away impressed but at the same time able to see where they cut the corners to fit in the sub-$600 price range – afterall, every mid-range phone must make some allowances if it is going to make the price range.

Design and Hardware

The design of the Reno8 Lite 5G is different to nearly every other Android phone on the market.  Instead of the smooth, curved edges to allow it to fit comfortably in the hand, the edges of the phone are boxier – not rounded off.  I have to say it isn’t as comfortable to hold but it looks more stylish.  OPPO call it a retro design and if 7 years ago is retro, then that’s what it is.  I don’t hate the design as it’s good to try something to stand out from the pack – this design change is good to be honest and definitely catches the eye.

The colour we received is the Cosmic Black spec which is black with silver stars/speckles throughout it.  You can also get it in a Rainbow Spectrum, as pictured below, which looks more like a Rainbow Paddlepop than a phone.

The rear of the device hours a dual rear camera setup, which looks impressive with the size of the lenses but let’s not take the size as a given for imagery – check out the results below.  OPPO has also included new Dual Orbit Lights which are lights located behind the two primary cameras and light up/blink in various blue hues for different scenarios such as charging, receiving calls, notifications etc.  I very rarely noticed these because I always leave my phone sitting display up (I’m paranoid about scratching it).

As I mentioned above OPPO has a history of providing great bang for your buck when it comes to their mid-range smartphones.  The Reno8 Lite is no different.  It houses a 6.4-inch AMOLED display which is impressive to look at although it does only support 60Hz refresh rate – in 2022 many other manufacturers are including 90 and 120Hz refresh rates in their mid-range phones so it is disappointing that OPPO has only included a 60Hz refresh rate display.  A higher refresh rate would make for a much smoother experience.

Powering the large display is a very decent Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 5G chipset accompanied with 8GB RAM and 128GB of storage – you can expand the storage with a microSD should you wish to.  The chipset combined with the RAM made for a very smooth experience without any stuttering or lag in the user experience.

The battery is a decent 4,500mAh battery with support for 33W SuperVOOC charging technology.  If you haven’t used charging this fast, then you are missing out.  Although I would have preferred even faster charging, possibly 65W, the 33W is still faster than most other smartphones in this price range – for example the Pixel 6a at $750 only charges at 18W.  OPPO included 65W in their super mid-range Find X3 last year and it would have been nice to see that trickle down this year but, well, maybe next year.

OPPO has included one of the fastest and best in-display fingerprint sensors on the market.  The sensor is so much faster than that in ANY Google Pixel device it is not funny.  The sensor is consistent and accurate in every case. 


Many years ago, I wrote a hit piece on OPPO’s ColorOS because it was slow, buggy, bloated, ugly and turned Android into a terrible experience.  How the tables have turned.  Now I have to say that OPPO’s ColorOS 12 is one of the best software skins for Android on the market and I have become a fan of their software to an extent.   I love the ability to customise it in so many ways to suit you and the way you use your smartphone.

It is now a good looking, subtle and stylish skin which you can modify to your heart’s content.  One good thing with OPPO is that they include nearly every single tweak that is in ColorOS on their ultra-premium smartphones into the software on their mid-range smartphones.  Tweaks such as personalisations, screen on and off gestures, fingerprint tweaks and more are all included and all work as well on this phone as they do on their ultra-premium smartphones.  Sure, the speed and snappiness aren’t quite the same but the experience difference is barely noticeable.

There is still one thing that does not work on ColorOS 12 and that is device control that is built into Android 12 now.  You are meant to be able to specify certain devices in your smart home that are included here for quick access to but ColorOS 12 just does not allow you to add any devices.  I had the same issue last year on the find X3 Pro – come on OPPO, fix it!

One thing they have fixed in recent times is Android Auto.  Now using Android Auto is a seamless, beautiful experience – whether it’s wired or wireless.  Using Wireless Android Auto is smooth a butter without any dropouts or issues with projection or transmittance of signal at all.


The imaging system is normally where a mid-range has to make sacrifices and the Reno8 Lite is no exception.  The specs on the cameras don’t match those in an ultra-premium smartphone but you should not expect that for less than half the price.  What you do get for $599 thought are no slouch.

The Reno8 Lite 5G includes a 64MP High-Res Main Camera, a 2MP Macro Camera, a 2MP Depth Camera, and a 16MP Front Camera.  OPPO has also included a raft of imaging features including Bokeh Flare Portrait, Selfie HDR, AI Palettes, AI Color Portrait and Portrait Retouching – none of which you are going to use on a regular basis.  Let’s face it most people set their smartphone to auto and just point and shoot.  That is how I test out the camera on the Reno8 Lite and the results were decent without being mind-blowing.

The AI scenery seemed to work well and whether it made any difference to the pictures is unknown but it doesn’t look like it made them worse.  In the examples below you can see decent colour reproduction, light balance and sharpness, even with large amounts of zoom.  It was unable to match the camera in the more expensive Pixel 6a but it is still no slouch and offers many other things other than just a decent camera. The resultant pictures from the Reno8 Lite were certainly decent and passable.

Battery life and performance

The battery is not a massive battery at 4,500mAh but the phone seems to just keep on and on.  I was able to take it off the charger at around 6am in the morning, use it fairly extensively throughout the day including a Tour de France catchup, tethering the data to a laptop and more and by 7pm I still had 20% left and had used over 5 hours of screen on time.  Impressive.

Of course, you can plug it is and charge it extremely quickly using OPPO’s SuperVOOC charging so running the battery out or low is not a huge issue.  

A mid-range device has to miss out on some things to make the price and one of them is often wireless charging.  For most manufacturers that is not a huge issue as their wireless charging is boring and slow.  Not with OPPO with their 45W wireless AirVOOC faster than most manufacturers wired charging so it was a little disappointing OPPO did not include wireless charging but to hit the mid-range segment something has to give.

With the decent chipset, along with the 8GB of RAM I did not have any performance problems at all with the phone.  It was fast and snappy with all apps loading fast and effortlessly.  Side by side with an ultra-premium device you nice a slightly slower experience but if this is all you know then you’d swear it was as fast as it could get.  If you get the Reno8 Lite 5G you will not be disappointed with its performance chops, even while gaming.

Why you should buy the OPPO Reno8 Lite 5G

At this end of the mid-range it’s a tough sell for OPPO when they are competing against other high-end manufacturers such as Samsung and their A-range and Google and the new Pixel 6a. The Reno8 Lite 5G comes in a fair bit under these phones at $599 (Pixel 6a is $749) and as such can certainly entice users to take the punt on an OPPO smartphone.

The camera in the OPPO Reno8 Lite is nowhere near as good as the Pixel 6a thanks to Google’s amazing computational photography but at $150 cheaper than the Pixel 6a, the Reno8 Lite 5G certainly offers bang for your buck in the imaging results. If camera quality is the only thing you want in your smartphone and are willing to pay the extra to get the Pixel 6a then you probably should but if you prefer the $599 price of the Reno8 Lite then you will not be disappointed with the pictures you are able to produce using it.

On a day-to-day basis the OPPO Reno8 Lite 5G gives the user a wonderful experience with so many options and tweaks to enable them to be able to use the phone exactly how they want to use it. The battery provides for all-day battery life and the charging is extremely fast thanks to OPPO’s proprietary 33W SuperVOOC charging.

The OPPO Reno8 Lite 5G is a great phone for those who want a great looking phone that provides a relatively snappy experience along with decent photography but don’t want to break the bank paying for such. The OPPO Reno8 Lite 5G is available now for $599 from JB Hi-Fi, Officeworks, Harvey Norman, Big W, Woolworths, Bing Lee, and Australia Post.