OnePlus Nord CE 2 Camera Review: CE for Camera Enthusiasts?

Getting the basics right

by: - Last updated on: February 25th, 2022
Key Takeaways
  • OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is the latest device in the OnePlus catalogue of devices.
  • The device packs a triple rear camera setup- a 64MP primary, an 8MP ultra-wide and a 2MP Macro camera.
  • We will have a detailed look at the device’s camera performance and see how it stacks up against the competition.

When OnePlus launched the OnePlus Nord 2 last year, we were particularly impressed by the camera quality of this device, and it was one of our top recommendations for all camera enthusiasts looking for a device under Rs 30,000.

oneplus nord ce 2 camera review

The OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G is the latest addition to the OnePlus device catalog. It has some interesting camera specs on paper, such as a 64MP primary lens, an 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens, and a 2MP macro lens. On the front, it features a 16MP shooter.

But has onePlus done enough to make it the best camera smartphone under Rs. 25,000? Let us find out in our OnePlus Nord CE 2 camera review.

Hello Bokeh

We were particularly impressed by the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G’s primary 64 MP shooter when shooting outdoors, and thanks to the f/1.79 aperture, we did not miss any bokeh (even without using portrait mode!?). The camera lived up to our expectations, delivering photos with good color reproduction and detail. The dynamic range was also great.

However, we found that the color reproduction was not always consistent, and the pictures sometimes looked a bit blurry. However, this is not a cause for concern as we have only experienced this problem occasionally. As with most OnePlus devices, the color tone is slightly stronger, which helps the images look better on the 6.4-inch AMOLED display of the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G.

Like most devices with larger sensors, this one takes pictures at 16 MP by default using pixel binning technology. However, OnePlus has integrated a special 64 MP mode in the camera app to take crisp and detailed 64 MP shots.

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What about indoors and in low light conditions? The camera struggles a bit in these conditions, and the images are sometimes a bit grainy. It is not that the pictures are not usable, but they are not the best when compared to those of the competition, such as the Realme 9 Pro+.

As mentioned earlier, there’s a lot of bokeh when you are really close to the subject, but we recommend using portrait mode when you are a bit further away from the subject/person. The portrait mode algorithm is like all other OnePlus devices with good edge detection and background blur.

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A Wider Perspective

The ultra-wide-angle lens of the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G performs quite well considering the price. The 118-degree field of view is relatively wide, and you can expect some good shots in bright daylight, with good color reproduction and decent consistency. But like the primary sensor, the ultra-wide-angle lens struggles indoors and in low-light conditions.

Remember the third lens? I’m talking about the 2MP macro camera, which unfortunately does not perform well due to the low resolution of the lens.

Selfie-ish?

If you like to take selfies with friends, family, or loved ones, then the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G will not disappoint you. The 16 MP camera takes good selfies with natural skin tones and without much artificial embellishment.

The selfies are detailed have good color reproduction and a good dynamic range. Furthermore, the selfies are not overexposed like some devices in the sub-25k price segment.

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Hello EIS, Goodbye OIS

Unlike the Realme 9 Pro+, the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G does not have optical image stabilization and offers electronic image stabilization instead. The device can record videos at up to 4K 30FPS, but it is not very stable, while the footage looks pretty good. We, therefore, recommend switching to 1080P 60 FPS for smoother video recording.

For those who shoot videos with their smartphone, is the Realme 9 Pro+ a better device compared to the CE 2 5G? Well, not quite, since OIS does not currently work for videos on the Realme 9 Pro+, nor is the video quality marginally better, so you will have a pretty similar experience on both devices.

Does CE stand for Camera Enthusiast?

In summary, the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G has a pretty capable camera that takes some good photos outdoors and performs decently indoors. However, the camera performance was inconsistent at times, but we expect this to improve with future software updates.

Camera performance is pretty close to the recently launched Realme 9 Pro+, but the 9 Pro+ performs slightly better in indoor lighting conditions. Still, you will not be disappointed with the cameras on the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G.

But there’s more to a device than just camera quality, right? Absolutely, but you do not have to worry because our review of the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G has already been published; you can read it here.

Click here for full resolution images + additional samples.

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