Test Oppo AX7: our full review – Smartphones

Oppo starts the year with an entry-level smartphone, the AX7, which does not want to make any concessions on the design. A choice that still has implications for other aspects of the smartphone. Here is our test.

Technical sheet
                                    Oppo AX7
            OS version
                            Android 8.1
                Screen size
                            6.2 inches
                            1520 x 720 pixels
                Pixel density
                            271 dpi
                            Snapdragon 450 at 1.8GHz
                Processor (CPU)
                Graphics Chip (GPU)
                            Adreno 506
                RAM memory
                Internal memory (flash)
                            64 GB
                Camera (backpack)
                            1:13 megapixel sensor, 2 megapixel sensor
                Camera (front)
                            16 megapixels
                Video recording
                            LTE, HSPA, GSM
                Supported bands
                            2100 MHz (B1), 800 MHz (B20), 1800 MHz (B3), 2600 MHz (B7), 700 MHz (B28)
                            2x nano SIM
                Ports (Inputs / Outputs)
                            4230 mAh
                            155.9 x 75.4 x 8.1 mm
                            168 grams
                            Blue, Gold
                            249 euros
                        Product sheet
                                This test was made from a smartphone loaned by the brand.
By far, we can think that the design of the Oppo AX7 is not really out of the ordinary, and for good reason: the smartphone follows the trends of the year 2018. Yet this screen edge to edge with notch shaped drop, and this design with a glass back and a frame resembling metal, impress for a smartphone at this price.

This is the strength of the design of this smartphone, with the AX7 it seems to have in hand a smartphone that would be sold more expensive. We find the finesse of the finishes that are usually expected on a range above. One element brings us back to reality, the integration of the screen with the chassis. The screen is a little too much of the device, a classic feature of entry-level smartphones, which could be the sign of a fragile screen, its edges can easily be impacted in case of a fall.

Side connectivity, we are a little disappointed that a smartphone at this price is still equipped with a micro USB port while USB Type-C tends to become more widespread, especially when this smartphone wants to emphasize its design. Last point to note, the presence of a micro SD player, in addition to two nanoSIM housing.
The smartphone features a 6.2-inch IPS LCD screen with a resolution of 1520 x 720 pixels and a pre-installed screen protector. The latter has been removed so as not to interfere with the measurements. To the naked eye, the screen seems dim, even when pushed to the limit, but the main problem is not there.
The screen does not benefit from oleophobic treatment, and even with clean hands, we can quickly see effects related to fat fingers. With the rather low pixel density of the phone, it gives a screen on which it is too often unpleasant to read.

Once passed under our colorimetric probe, it is clear that the screen Oppo AX7 also offers rather good benefits. First the maximum brightness recorded is 442 cd / m² for a contrast of 1388: 1, in both cases scores more than respectable for a smartphone at this rate. Like most smartphones on the market, the colors are blue by default, but here it is quite moderate with an average color temperature of 7500K (ideally 6500K).
The AX7 runs on Android 8.1 Oreo with the updates of December 5, 2018 and the ColorOS 5.2 interface. We can only regret that a smartphone launched in 2019 is not equipped with Android 9.0 Pie out of factory, especially for the entry level or the issue of tracking updates is posed.
While waiting for ColorOS 6.0, we will make the same criticism as for the tests of Find X or Realme 2 Pro. We love the additional features offered by Oppo, such as night mode, the ability to calibrate the screen, or the choice of the order of navigation buttons. The interface uses attractive colors and the settings of the device are quite intuitive and well organized.

However, we do not like the complete absence of notification icons in the status bar, while the notch is fine enough to allow placing 3 or 4. In the notifications pane, these can only be removed with a gesture by sliding to the right. The native Oppo launcher does not include any application drawer and you have to go through the smartphone settings to change the wallpaper. Finally, and it's specific to French, the translation of the interface is always approximate with many truncated words making it difficult to understand certain menus.

Good news, the Oppo AX7 incorporates the Widevine L1 DRM, which allows full compatibility with SVOD services like Netflix.
With the AX7, Oppo has made a big performance concession by choosing one of the worst chips on the market today, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 450. This chip launched in late 2017 integrates a processor with 8 cores Cortex-A53 1.8 GHz, an Adreno 506 graphics chip. Here the Snapdragon 450 is supported by 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage, expandable by microSD.
Oppo AX7Xiaomi Redmi 6Wiko View 2 GoXiaomi Mi A2 LiteHonor 8X
SoCSnapdragon 450Helio P22Snapdragon 430Snapdragon 625Kirin 710
AnTuTu 7.x69 94377 03259 51579 365139 987
CPU30 Score 69636 88427 77938 77867 147
GPU12 score 02612 0119 08912 86622 439
UX20 score 62319 31417 90922 89937 636
Score Memoire6 5988 8234 7384 82212 765
The Snapdragon 450 already shows its limits with the system interface, or some actions like launching and browsing the Play Stores are slow or jerky. This is also confirmed during a game session with Arena of Valor where the smartphone holds 30 images per second while stack, and lacks fluidity on complex scenes.
The Qualcomm SoC on the 400 series are not all recommended for a smartphone, or it must be sold at a low price. Here, with the price of the Oppo AX7, it's a problem. We would have liked a SoC series 600 like Xiaomi offers on its Redmi Note, sold cheaper in France.
As has become the standard on the market, the Oppo AX7 incorporates two cameras on the back. The first uses a 13 megapixel sensor with a f / 2.2 lens, while the second is based on a 2 megapixel sensor and an f / 2.4 lens. Given these characteristics, the latter will be mainly figurative and will provide a little more information to the smartphone for capturing photos.
Unsurprisingly for a smartphone in 2019, the daytime photos are rather successful without being exceptional. The photos show a nice sharpness for a device at this price, with good dynamics enabled by a rather successful HDR.

At night, things are necessarily complicated, the management of lights is completely missed, the least source becomes burnt and makes appear halos on the cliche. The photos lack detail and the white balance leaves something to be desired.

On the front, the smartphone uses a 16-megapixel sensor with a f / 2.0 lens. This solution produces once again rather successful photos with the right light conditions. On the other hand, at night, it becomes very difficult. The management of the light is missed, and the photos blurred, or not usable, multiply.

The AX7 incorporates a voluminous battery of 4230 mAh. With a Snapdragon 450 and a screen with a rather low resolution, the autonomy of the smartphone should be exceptional. Unfortunately, we could not test it with our usual Viser test protocol, due to incompatibility of the tool, presumably with ColorOS.
So we used our old protocol, which is to watch a 60-minute video on YouTube with the screen set to a brightness of 200 cd / m². After this operation, the smartphone showed 93% of remaining battery, a very good score if I believe our history with this test.
In everyday life, my use of the phone showed me that it was possible to easily use it for two days, without having any problem with the battery.
The smartphone comes with a 10W charger, it's a good point when we remember that some smartphones over 1200 euros still offer 5 W chargers. Unfortunately, with such a large battery, the charge is not so fast only that. In 30 minutes, we go from 10 to 30% battery. After 60 minutes, the battery is 54%. It takes a total of just under 2 hours and 30 minutes to get to 100%.
Network and communication
The Oppo AX7 is compatible with all 4G LTE frequencies used in France: B1, B3, B7, B20, and B28. The latter corresponds to the 700 MHz band, it is often absent, especially on entry-level smartphones, and is mainly used by Free Mobile.
The phone also supports Wi-Fi 4 (802.11a / b / g / n) at 2.4GHz and Bluetooth 4.2. There is the absence of NFC, which becomes annoying in 2019 with the rise in popularity of payment by Smartphone.
Price and availability
The Oppo AX7 is launched from March 1st at a price of 249 euros.
Where to buy the Oppo AX7 at the best price? There are no offers for the moment
With this price, Oppo puts his smartphone in front of the Honor 8X, and above the Xiaomi Redmi Note 6 Pro, both offering a much better spec sheet for their price.

Our photos of the Oppo AX7
                        Test Oppo AX7 The verdict
                                Design is the main strength of the Oppo AX7. The smartphone is very comfortable in hand, and offers a neat design with beautiful finishes. This is a level of quality that is usually found with smartphones sold at a higher price.
                                The lack of oleophobic treatment on the 6.2 inch screen, and its rather low definition, make it too often embarrassing to read on the screen. It's a shame, especially since the screen also offered good brightness and nice contrasts.
                                The Oppo AX7 ships Android 8.1 Oreo at a time when we now expect Android 9.0 Pie. The ColorOS 5.2 interface has not evolved and has user experience issues (translation, mismanagement of notifications, lack of some options). Managing Widevine L1 DRM is a good point.
                                The Snapdragon 450 should be banned from smartphones as it does not offer sufficient performance for a nice use with Android. The interface or the passage from one app to another are slow or jerky. Especially, at this price, or for less, there are much better equipped smartphones, with Snapdragon 600.
                                The pictures obtained during the day, whether with the camera at the front or the back, are rather successful for a smartphone at this price. The problem comes from night photos where light management, like white balance, are to be reviewed.
                                With a 4230 mAh battery and low-power components, the Oppo AX7 offers very good battery life. It will be very simple to use the smartphone for two days or more. Be careful, however, the charge micro USB that takes a little time.
                    The Oppo AX7 would be a beautiful smartphone at 150 euros, great maximum. The problem is that it is launched at 249 euros. This is how one can quickly summarize what emerges from this test. The design of the smartphone is successful, no doubt about it, and the autonomy is rather good thanks to a voluminous battery. The problem comes mainly from other elements of the device: its interface, its screen and its central processor. These are crucial elements for the user experience, which is penalized here, especially when we come back to the selling price which is much too high. The Snapdragon 450 in particular should not be integrated on phones at this price. This processor is simply not enough in 2019, even for occasional use of the smartphone. The AX7 is not a smartphone that can be recommended at launch. Maybe when he dropped prices …
                        Good points
                        Premium design
                                                            The monstrous autonomy
                                                            (4G 700 MHz, Widevine L1)
                                                            (Port jack)
                        Negative points
                        Screen without oleophobic protection
                                                            ColorOS does not convince
                                                            Disappointing performance
                                                            Price / performance ratio to be reviewed
                                                            (No NFC)


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