OnePlus 8 versus OnePlus 8 Pro: which one should you buy?


As you may have heard, OnePlus has just unveiled its two new flagship smartphones for 2020, the OnePlus 8 and the OnePlus 8 Pro. While the company did have two devices last year, it chose to restrict availability by market, not giving everyone the opportunity to choose between the two. This year, OnePlus will be making both phones available in most markets that it serves across the globe. SO, the question is, which one should you buy?

To help with that, let’s start off with the basics and highlight what features they share. Inside each phone, you’ll find a Snapdragon 865 chipset with 5G support, the option to choose between 8GB or 12GB of RAM accompanied by 128GB or 256GB of storage. Both phones also use the same 16MP front-facing camera, Warp Charge T for 30W fast charging, run the same software experience with Oxygen OS on top of Android 10, but that’s where the similarities end.

In all honesty, these two phones have more differences than similarities. The regular OnePlus 8’s triple camera system on the back consists of a 48MP main camera, 2MP macro camera and 16MP ultrawide. While the Oneplus 8 Pro has a quad-camera setup which uses two 48MP sensors, one for its main camera and the other for its ultra-wide, an 8MP camera which delivers 3x hybrid zoom and finally a 5MP color filter camera.

But while the 48MP sensors inside the two phones may seem the same, they’re not. The Sony IMX689 sensor inside the 8 Pro is the same one used in the Oppo Find X2 pro while the IMX586 that the regular OnePlus 8 uses is the same one the company used on last year’s 7T Pro.

The results speak for themselves. The 8 Pro definitely has a better camera setup. While it’s hard to notice a significant difference in well-lit scenarios, they’re definitely noticeable once lighting conditions aren’t perfect. And the extra camera with the 3x hybrid zoom on the Pro gives you an extra tool to get in closer to your subject with sharper and more detailed images the regular OnePlus 8’s 2x digital zoom

Fortunately, both phones sport the same upgraded camera app with improved manual mode features and enhanced video capture at 4K/60FPS with incredible image stabilization that uses electronic and optical stabilization simultaneously.

The Oneplus 8 Pro also has the upper hand when it comes to its display and performance. The 6.55-inch FHD+ OLED of the standard 8 manages to deliver a refresh rate of 90FPS, but the 8 Pro takes it one step further with a 6.78-inch OLED panel and 120Hz refresh rate at its full resolution, that’s something that the Galaxy S20 Ultra can’t even pull off. and it also sports a dedicated MEMC chip for even smoother video playback.

As you might imagine, the difference in screen size also leads to a difference in the overall sizes of the two phones. The OnePlus 8 is 5mm or roughly a quarter-inch shorter than the Pro and weighs in at 180 grams which is 10% lighter than its larger sibling. To most, these differences will only be noticeable if holding both devices at the same time, but personally I prefer the smaller footprint of the OnePlus 8.

The difference in battery capacity at 4300 versus 4510 mAh between the 8 and 8 Pro shouldn’t really be noticeable due to their differences in screen size and resolution, but the Pro does come with two charging tricks that have been left out of the regular 8. That’s right, wireless charging is finally here and it’s not the plain old 15W charging rate that other flagship devices are using. OnePlus has built its own 30W fast wireless charger that sports a built-in fan to keep things cool and on top of that, you also get reverse wireless charging to help top off a friend’s phone or give your wireless headphones a bit of a power boost.

Another difference worth considering between these two is the official IP68 dust and water resistance rating of the 8 Pro. OnePlus says that the other device still has undergone extensive water resistance testing to ensure it can survive a drop in a puddle or an accidental spill, but if you want that official rating, the 8 Pro is the way to go.

OnePlus 8 versus OnePlus 8 Pro specification

Oneplus 8 Pro OnePlus 8
Price $899/$999 $699/$799
Screen size 6.78-inches 6.55-inches
Resolution 1440 x 3168 1080 x 2400
Density 513 ppi 402
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
RAM 8 / 12 GB 8 / 12 GB
Storage 128 / 256 GB 128 / 256 GB
Battery 4510 mAh 4300 mAh
OS Android 10 Android 10
Rear camera

Quad-cameras: 48MP, f/1.78, (standard),
8MP, f/2.4 (telephoto),
48MP, f/2.2, 119 degrees (ultrawide),
5MP, f/2.4 (color filter)

48MP, f/1.7 (standard),
2MP, f/2.4 (macro),
16MP, f2.2, 116 degrees (ultrawide)

Front camera 16MP, f/2.4 16MP, f/2.2
Bluetooth v5.1 v5.1
NFC Yes Yes
Dimensions 165.3 x 74.35 x 8.5 mm 160.2 x 72.9 x 8.0 mm
Weight 199 g 180 g
Water Resistance N/A N/A
Wireless Charging Yes No
Special features

30W fast charging,
30W wireless fast charging,
Reverse wireless charging,

In-display fingprint sensor,
120 Hz display

30W fast charging,
In-display fingprint sensor,
90 Hz display

And that brings us to the final item on the list: the price. While the spec sheet of the basic model may not be as impressive as that of the 8 Pro, at least the price difference between these two phones more than makes up for the OnePlus 8’s shortcomings.

The base model for the OnePlus 8 comes in at $699 while the 8 Pro will set you back $899. Tack on an extra $100 and Oneplus will upgrade the RAM to 12GB and storage to 256GB on both devices.

At the end of the day, it all comes down to your priorities and how you use your phone. If photography is an important item on your must-have” checklist, the OnePlus 8 Pro and its quad-camera offer a better set of tools to capture that perfect shot. Add in wireless charging and the phone’s gorgeous display and you have yourself one of the best devices of 2020.

But sometimes price wins out in the end, especially if you’re not into photography that much and all you want is an incredibly fast phone with the latest chipset from Qualcomm. The regular Oneplus 8 is still just as powerful as the Pro and at $700 bucks, you’ll be hard-pressed to find something better.

Let us know which features are most important to you and if you’re willing to pay the $200 premium OnePlus is charging for the 8 Pro this year.

Nick Gray
I'm a life-long tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC. After writing about tech for more than a decade, I jumped at the opportunity to take on the role of Editor in Chief at Phandroid. Please contact me at [email protected].

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