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Oppo Find X5 Pro could beat Galaxy S22 Ultra for night photo crown

Oppo Find X5 Pro back view
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Oppo's produced some impressive flagship Android smartphones over the past couple of years, and the newly revealed Oppo Find X5 Pro is the company's latest potential contender for our best Android phones list. 

There is a small caveat tin that the Find X5 Pro won't be coming to the U.S. but for U.K. buyers there's a new contender for the Android flagship crown, and a potential rival for the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

A suite of flagship specs

As one might expect from a flagship phone, the Oppo Find X5 Pro has a solid high-end specs sheet. You’ll find the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 at its heart, with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage backing up the slice of silicon. 

A 6.7-inch 120Hz refresh rate display is present, but this time a new LTPO panel means its adaptive nature can scale as low as 1Hz to reduce power consumption, similar to the Galaxy S22 Ultra. And there's a huge 1,000Hz touch sampling rate so that your fingers feel like they are interacting with the apps themselves as opposed to glass.

Superfast charging, a staple of Oppo phones, has been ramped up from 65W to 80W in order to juice up the 5,000 mAh battery pack faster than ever. Wireless charging comes in at 50W but with a proprietary AirVOOC charger. 

A familiar but eye-catching design

Oppo Find X5 Pro display

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The Find X5 Pro’s design is broadly similar to that of the Oppo Find X3 Pro’s, only this time it’s dropped the oddball microscope camera, resulting in a more compact camera bump that’s integrated into the phone’s unibody. 

I wish Oppo had done more with the design, given the Find X3 Pro was a dramatic departure from the Oppo Find X2 Pro. But the Glaze Black and Ceramic White options are easy on the eye, and the Find X5 Pro is a lovely phone to hold and use, though the shiny black model shows fingerprints like crazy.

As for cameras, the X5 Pro brings in a new 50-megapixel main camera, backed up a 50MP ultrawide camera with the same Sony IMX766 sensor. Those are joined by a 13MP telephoto camera with a 2x optical zoom. The selfie camera sits at 32MP. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but that's basically the same specs sheet as the Find X3 Pro’s cameras.

However, there's more to the story here. Oppo, like its sibling phone maker OnePlus, has joined forces with Hasselblad, with Oppo taking care of the hardware and the Swedish camera specialist aiding on software and color tuning. 

We’ve seen this applied with some success to the OnePlus 9 Pro, but the really interesting thing here is the new MariSilicon X imaging neural processing unit the Find X5 Pro uses.

Oppo Find X5 Pro: Let there be light

Oppo Find X5 Pro cameras

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

This 6-nanometer chip is used to power the Find X5 pro’s AI image processing, and promises to deliver better overall photography, especially in low-light situations.

Now, I’ve not had too long to test the Find X5 Pro but for a clutch of shots I’ve taken and briefly compared to the iPhone 13 Pro and Google Pixel 6 Pro, Oppo has once again produced a very capable camera system. 

The new MariSilicon X imaging neural processing unit is designed to deliver the best night mode photos possible

The shots might not quite have the sheer contrast of Google’s phone, and Apple’s phone has a warmer take on colors, but so far I’m impressed by the Find X5 Pro.

But this year the secret sauce is in low-light photography and video. The new MariSilicon X has been tuned to filter out more noise when using night mode than before. Overall, it seems to have worked.

Take a look at the shot below. The Find X5 Pro has done a rather impressive job at handling a dimly lit street. It’s a shot flush with detail, with the letters and numbers on car plates more defined when one zooms than with a comparative iPhone 13 Pro shot. Streetlights aren’t blown out either, which is something even the best phones struggle with.

In some darker conditions, the Find X5 Pro can occasionally be beaten by the iPhone 13 Pro. But at times when Cupertino’s flagship fumbles to illuminate a seriously dark shot, the Find X5 Pro comes out on top.

But good night modes aren’t exactly uncommon in flagship phones, especially the Samsung Galaxy S22 range with their new Nightography chops. So Oppo plans to have the Find X5 Pro stand out when it comes to shooting videos at night. 

The new 4K Night Mode, again powered by the MariSilicon X chip, can take gloomy scenes and brighten them up considerably, pulling detail out of shadows and keeping light sources from blowing out the shot. 

I’ll need more time to test this, but there are some promising signs already that the Oppo Find X5 Pro could end up being one of the best phones of the year when it comes to night time photography and video recording. 

And I should hope so, as at £1,049 it’s far from cheap. The Oppo Find X5 may mildly undercut it’s £1,099 predecessor, but it’s still priced higher than the iPhone 13 Pro, Pixel 6 Pro, and Galaxy S22 Plus. That's a dangerous position to be in, especially when it doesn't offer a brand-new design.

While I’ll have to fully review the phone before I come to any definitive conclusions, there's a real feeling of refinement and a lack of fluff or gimmicks to the Find X5 Pro, and that’s looking very promising indeed.

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.