Oppo F21 Pro review

Oppo has finally released the Oppo F21 Pro in the Subcontinent after a few days of teasers. The mid-range smartphone debuts with a redesigned look and an expanded feature set. Like its predecessors, it has a distinctive look and feel, but its specifications are only average. Is this phone better than other

Oppo F21 Pror products in the category? Is it worth buying? In this review, I try to address these questions.

I would like to state upfront that this evaluation is based solely on my own experience using an Oppo F21 Pro review sample that Oppo lent me. The corporation had no initial view or editorial input into the ideas published here; They are completely mine.

Box Contents

  • Transparent Case
  • 33W SuperVOOC Charger
  • USB Type-A to Type-C cable
  • SIM Ejector Tool
  • Documentation

Unlike previous models in the family, the product does not come with a complimentary set of wired headphones.

Oppo F21 Pro Full Specifications

AnnouncedApril 12, 2022
First ReleaseApril 15, 2022
Dimensions159.9 x 73.2 x 7.5 mm
Weight175 g
SIMDual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by)
TypeAMOLED, 90Hz
Size6.43 inches, 99.8 cm2 (~85.3% screen-to-body ratio)
Resolution1080 x 2400 pixels, 20:9 ratio (~409 ppi density)
ProtectionCorning Gorilla Glass 5
Operating SystemAndroid 13, ColorOS 13.1
ChipsetQualcomm Snapdragon 680 4G (6 nm)
GPUAdreno 610
Card SlotmicroSDXC
Internal128GB/ 8GB RAM
Triple64 MP, f/1.7, 26mm (wide)

2 MP, f/3.3, (microscope)

2 MP, f/2.4, (depth)
FeaturesLED flash, HDR, panorama
Video1080p@30fps, gyro-EIS
Single32 MP, f/2.4, 24mm (wide)
FeaturesPanorama, HDR
Video1080p@30fps, gyro-EIS
3.5mm jackYes
WLANWi-Fi 802. dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct
Bluetooth5.1, A2DP, LE, aptX HD
USBUSB Type-C 2.0, OTG
SensorsFingerprint (under the display, optical)
TypeLi-Po 4500 mAh, non-removable
Charging33W wired, 100% in 60 min (advertised)
ColorsCosmic Black, Sunset Orange, Dawnlight Gold, Starlight Black
ModelsCPH2363, CPH2461
DisplayContrast ratio: Infinite (nominal)
CameraPhoto / Video
Loudspeaker-29.7 LUFS (Average)
Battery lifeEndurance rating 127h
Oppo F21 Pro Full Specification

Design and Build

Oppo F21 Pro’s design is its biggest feature. There are two color options for the phone: Cosmic Black (glass) and Sunset Orange (fiberglass skin).

I own the previous color variation. This variant has a fiberglass skin on the back. This synthetic leather surface looks attractive in orange color and feels pleasant to the touch. It is unique because not many cell phones are available in Orange these days.

I never used the case that came in the package. It is clear that the phone is meant for naked use. There didn’t seem to be any visible dirt on the back of the leather during my week of use.

Another notable feature of the phone’s design is its camera island. Its dual-tone finish makes it look like a camcorder. In addition to an LED flashlight, there is an LED notification ring.

Despite being made of plastic, the handset’s flat frame feels solid in the hand. The SIM card port is on the left, while the volume and tactile power keys are on the right and left of the frame, respectively

There is only a secondary microphone hole on the top. On the other hand, the bottom has a speaker grill, a USB Type-C port, a primary microphone hole, and a 3.5mm headphone socket.

With the camera hump removed, the smartphone weighs just 175 grams and is just 7.54mm thick overall. As a result, it is rather comfortable to hold for long periods of time.


Oppo F21 Pro has three cameras installed on the back. A 2MP Galaxycore GC02M1 sensor with 15x microlens, a 64MP OmniVision OV64B primary sensor, and a 2MP Galaxycore GC02M1B depth sensor make up the system. On the other hand, there is a 32MP Sony IMX709 RGBW sensor on the front for selfies.

Only two of the four cameras are functional. As with any other smartphone, the depth sensor is useless. Conversely, microlanes have limited applications. After a while, one can get bored and possibly forget it ever existed.

To begin with, the primary camera is the same sensor used in last year’s expensive Oppo Reno 6 Pro 5G (Review) and Oppo Reno 6 5G (Review). Software processing is very different though.

Appropriate human skin tones could not be output by these two Reno handsets. The new F21 Pro, however, is pretty close. I adore how well it captures the color of black skin. Even anomalies like pimples are not changed by technology. The camera output closely resembles what is seen in real life.

However, lack of color fidelity is acceptable because visually appealing images are highly sought after. This is surprising because there is no real oversaturation.

High dynamic range, or HDR, is a positive thing, but like the Renos I’ve tried before, there are instances when the processing is too harsh with more backlight. As a result, the halo effect can be seen in these images.

As can be expected from a low-mid-range smartphone, images are blurry in low light. Even night mode isn’t very helpful.

selfie camera

Regarding the selfie camera, the hardware of the gadget is fine, but the processing is subpar. Using the front camera was something I really disliked. Skin tones are completely different. But other features are comparable to the primary camera. To capture more subjects, the front and rear cameras have wider lenses.

The maximum resolution of both the front and rear cameras for shooting videos is 1080p at 30 frames per second. All in all, the videos produced by these two sensors are mediocre. They lack consistency and have trouble focusing. They look blurry in dim light, just like a photo. Regardless, the mics recorded clear audio, but no apparent noise cancellation.

Display and Sound

The Oppo F21 Pro’s 6.43-inch AMOLED display has a punch hole in the upper left corner. Canvas has a 20:9 aspect ratio and a resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels.

Up to 90Hz refresh rate and 180Hz touch sampling rate is supported by the screen. For the price, the display does a great job. In direct sunlight, it becomes sufficiently bright.

It is important to note that panels cannot always operate at a refresh rate of 90 Hz. Software optimization or a lower mid-range chipset could be responsible for this. For phones with comparable configurations, this is a known issue.

It is interesting to note that although the screen complies with HDR10 and HLG standards, it cannot play YouTube HDR movies. Additionally, since the device is not Widevine L1 certified, it is unable to play HD videos on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, two well-known streaming services. Oppo, however, claims that the retail model will not have these issues.

Unlike most smartphones in this category, the Oppo F21 Pro does not have dual stereo speakers. It has a bottom-firing unit, but it’s loud enough to watch a movie in one sitting. Regardless, if you’re like me and used to stereo sound, you’ll constantly notice its absence.

A headphone jack is available for those who don’t want to use or don’t own wireless earbuds. However, as already mentioned, a complimentary set of wired earbuds is not included in the package.

Hardware and Software

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 680 SoC powers the Oppo F21 Pro. 128GB UFS 2.2 storage and 8GB LPDDR4x RAM complement the chipset.

Additionally, the phone supports up to 5GB of virtual memory. It comes with a 3GB virtual memory option enabled by default. Unlike most users, I didn’t change the value at all while using it.

In terms of software, the gadget runs ColorOS 12.1 based on Android 12. With slower processing, the experience is similar to Oppo smartphones running the same OS. It follows that you also get bloatware, which is sadly uninstallable.

Low-end chips hamper software responsiveness despite best efforts. The phone isn’t inherently slow though. Simply put, it’s not as fast as rival devices, including Oppo’s own Reno 7 and Reno 6.

The phone works effectively for daily use. It can store several apps in memory, but not as much as one would expect from a smartphone with similar specs. It’s not designed for gaming, so don’t expect a great experience.


The device can only connect via 4G, which is acceptable given that 5G networks are yet to be launched in The Subcontinent. The new generation network will not be generally accessible across the country even if it is launched in late 2022 or early 2023.

Talking about what’s available, mobile hotspots and LTE data functions like the objective. Both the microphone quality and the audio coming from the headpiece are in perfect working order. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth also work perfectly. I had no drops in my mouth.

Last but not least, an LED ring light for the microscope camera can also be used for game launches, call alarms, notifications, and charging signals. Although it looks nice, I don’t really use it because I always have my phone on the back.

Battery and Charging

Powering the Oppo F21 Pro is a 4,500mAh battery. It can easily last a day or more on a full charge. Because the device’s Snapdragon 680 chip, which employs a 6nm technology, is energy-efficient.

Also, the battery can be recharged using the 33W SuperVOOC fast charger that comes with the package in less than 90 minutes. From 10% to 100%, it takes about an hour and twenty minutes to fill.

It is definitely not the fastest-charging phone in the segment. For the majority of people, though, this is acceptable – unless you’re one of those people who are constantly in a rush.

Pros & Cons of Oppo F21 Pro


  • Great design
  • Capture nice photos in daylight
  • Budget-friendly
  • Good performance 


  • Lack of stereo speaker
  • Need improvement in low light capture.


Oppo F21 Pro is not for everyone, much like Oppo smartphones. Everything about it is mediocre except for the design. To truly appreciate the phone’s look and feel in the hand, you must hold one in your possession.

For certain customers, design is everything. It could be their best investment.

However, there’s nothing wrong with choosing this phone over its rivals if you can live with the aforementioned drawbacks.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a secondary smartphone in this price range, the Oppo F21 Pro is probably among your best choices. Primarily because, apart from its eye-catching looks, it is light, thin, and has a long battery life.

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