OnePlus Nord 3 5G Review : A complete mid-ranger

OnePlus Nord 3 5G Review : A complete mid-ranger

To conclude, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G is a complete mid-ranger. The performance is very good, the display is stunning, and the camera is right up there with the competition. While the smartphone has a very nice in-hand feel, the way it looks is pretty much similar to the OnePlus Nord CE 3 5G and I am not a big fan of the two flash.

The OnePlus Nord 3 5G is the latest mid-ranger from OnePlus, making it the third-gen hero device in OnePlus' more affordable range of Nord smartphones. With a design similar to its younger sibling, the OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite 5G, the OnePlus Nord comes with a flagship-level chipset and goes directly in competition with some critically-acclaimed devices in this range like the iQOO Neo 7 and the Poco F5. 

So, is the OnePlus Nord 3 good enough to take on its competitors from rival brands? I used the smartphone for about a week and put it through rigorous testing to see what the smartphone is all about. In this review, we will take a look at the smartphone's design, display, performance, battery, and camera performance to give you a verdict on if the OnePlus Nord 3 5G is worth your ₹33,999. Let's take a look:


Design wise, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G looks pretty much the same as its younger brother, the OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite 5G with the two camera cutouts, the rather tall design orientation, and flat-edges. Now, while from the looks of it, the smartphone is very similar to the OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite 5G apart from the weirdly-placed dual flash, the OnePlus Nord 3 is much more premium. We get a glass back panel, an edge-to-edge display and OnePlus' signature alert slider, first time on a flat frame. 

As far as the design is concerned, there isn't anything special going on with the OnePlus Nord 3 5G. There is little to distinguish the more premium device with the more budget friendly OnePlus Nord CE 3 Lite 5G. Further, the flash placement doesn't really look good and the smartphone is a bit too tall, which is not good for single-handed usage. Yes, we get a glass back panel with Gorilla Glass 5 protection that enhances the in-hand feel and from the front, the difference is evident between the Nord 3 and Nord CE 3 Lite, which is also good. 


Coming to the display, we get a nice 6.74-inch 10-bit AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and HDR10+ support. On paper, this display is almost flagship-level. In real life, things are similar. The display looks stunning from the moment you set eyes on it. The colours are vibrant yet accurate, the display is bright enough to be used in all kinds of environments, and it is perfectly responsive and slick.

OnePlus claims a peak brightness of 1,450 nits on the Nord 3. We put this to test using a Lux Meter, and the smartphone gave a maximum brightness of 868 nits and a minimum brightness of 3 nits on a plain white background. This is pretty good for any smartphone, and it basically means that there will be no visibility issues with this display, no matter how bright the sun is out there.

Further, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G also supports HDR video playback on apps that support it (Netflix, YouTube and more), which means that watching movies and TV shows is a pleasing experience on this smartphone. You will see things in very good detail and the image is super sharp while watching content. I watched a bunch of HDR videos on the OnePlus Nord 3 5G and the experience was quite immersive and vibrant.

In terms of responsiveness as well, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G’s display is very smooth and slick. The smartphone comes with 120Hz refresh rate, which most users already know results in a super responsive scrolling and switching experience, but the issue with OnePlus devices is that some very basic apps like YouTube don’t support high refresh rate and the smartphone switches back to 60Hz, which is not the case with any other manufacturer. 

Overall, this is a very good display. I found this to be one of the best displays on any smartphone in this range, and was instantly impressed with the picture quality, since the moment I set my eyes on this panel.


Since this is a OnePlus smartphone, performance obviously takes a step forward. The OnePlus Nord 3 5G is powered by a MediaTek Dimensity 9000 chipset, paired with up to 16GB of RAM, which is good enough for a laptop as well, let alone a smartphone. Given the premium chipset from MediaTek and RAM overkill, there is no doubt that the OnePlus Nord 3 5G is a superb performer. 

Of course, we ran a bunch of benchmarks on the OnePlus Nord 3 5G and the smartphone aced most of them. On AnTuTu, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G was able to put out a score of 905,530 points, which is one of the highest on this year's mid-range smartphones. On Geekbench also, the smartphone outperforms many mid-rangers from 2023, but has been outperformed by a few devices like the Vivo V27 Pro, Poco F5, Moto Edge 40, and the likes. 

We also ran PCMark Work 3.0 benchmark on the OnePlus Nord 3 5G and here, the smartphone didn't put out as impressive numbers as compared to the other CPU-based benchmark tests. In GPU-based tests also, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G didn't impress me as much as I expected the smartphone to, but the numbers are still very good for a smartphone at this level. What the numbers show and how the OnePlus Nord 3 performs in real life are pretty much similar. During my daily usage, I never felt any kind of a lack of performance while using the smartphone, or even doing certain demanding tasks like playing games or photography, or even tasks like editing photos and videos on the smartphone. 

The OnePlus Nord 3 5G uses the UFS 3.1 storage standard, which is not the latest, but a pretty fast storage standard. In storage-based testing, the smartphone showed similar read and write speeds as compared to its rivals, with a few minor differences here and there. 

Overall, this is a pretty good performer. Yes, it's not the fastest or the highest-specced device in this range, but the OnePlus Nord 3 5G never leaves its users asking for more. Playing games on this smartphone is a beautiful experience, and the smartphone handles multitasking as well as pretty much any other smartphone out there, not just a mid-ranger. 


Here, we get a 5,000mAh battery on the OnePlus Nord 3 5G, which has sort of become the standard in most smartphones these days. The backup on this battery is quite good. I put the OnePlus Nord 3 5G on a video loop test, where I played a 4K video on the smartphone with high brightness until the battery drained out, and the smartphone lasted for a very impressive 733 minutes or 12.2 hours! 

Now, while on video playback, the OnePlus Nord 3 puts out an impressive time of over 12 hours, that is not the case with all tasks. In my tests, I found the smartphone to be draining the battery a bit too fast while using GPS. I used the GPS navigation for one hour straight and the smartphone lost 9 percent of the battery. While playing a Call of Duty Mobile online session for 15 minutes, the smartphone lost 5 percent battery. 

With a good battery backup, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G also offers super fast charging. The smartphone comes with 80W SuperVOOC fast charging, which I tested during my review. The smartphone only took 34 minutes to charge from 0 to 100 percent, which is super fast for any segment, not just the sub-₹35,000 price bracket.


The camera here is a triple camera setup. This includes a primary 50-megapixel Sony IMX890 shooter with OIS, an 8-megapixel wide angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro shooter. The camera performance here is pretty deent. In well-lit environments, this camera is capable of putting out some brilliant images with pixel binning on. However, with the full 50-megapixel resolution or in high resolution mode, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G at times overexposes details. 


In other conditions such as low light, the smartphone sometimes struggles, but mostly the results are very much usable. The portraits on the smartphone, on the other hand, are brilliant. The OnePlus Nord 3 5G takes very nice portraits. The image is sharp and detailed, and the edge detection is almost spot-on. The dynamic range in portraits is also pretty good, even in average lighting conditions.

Like the portrait mode, the front camera of the OnePlus Nord 3 5G also impressed me quite a bit. Selfies on the OnePlus Nord 3 5G are sharp, vibrant and detailed. The smartphone has a 16-megapixel front shooter, which will keep all the selfie lovers out there pretty satisfied.


To conclude, the OnePlus Nord 3 5G is a complete mid-ranger. The performance is very good, the display is stunning, and surprisingly the camera is right up there with the competition. While the smartphone has a very nice in-hand feel, the way it looks is pretty much similar to the OnePlus Nord CE 3 5G and I am not a big fan of the two flash.

Yes, the performance is not the best in this segment, but it will never leave you asking for more with its 16GB RAM. I’m not a fan of the design, especially the two LED flash modules (or whatever the second circle is for), but there are plenty of people who have liked this design. Further, you get glass back and IP rating, so that’s great. The battery sometimes drains while doing specific tasks like GPS or using the camera, but the super fast 80W charging makes up for it.

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