The Oppo Find 7a is an astounding smartphone, earning a respectable 8.5/10 score in our earlier review of the device. For those looking for an even more premium experience, however, the Find 7 takes the same design and packs in several improvements including a QHD display. Both devices are now available (though the Find 7 didn’t arrive until quite a bit later), and are separated only by a $100 price difference. The Find 7a goes for $499 while the Find 7 will cost $599.
Do the Oppo Find 7's improvements justify spending the extra $100?
Here’s the big question, though: is the Find 7 worth the $100 premium or is its cheaper sibling the better value? Let’s jump and take a look!
Our views on the Oppo Find 7 do stay parallel with those in our hands-on and first impressions post. The device touts the same awesome design as we see in the 7a, with the only main exception being the back of the device, which is made of carbon fiber instead of brushed metal. Belive it or not, this is actually a downside! As you can see in the image below, the material is deteriorating easily, making for a less than premium experience. The wear and tear seen below showed up only a couple of days into the testing stages.
Both the Find 7 and 7a borrow the same design language we saw on the Find 5. The stunning build quality and steel elements are present, but Oppo has managed to make this device feel a bit better. The weight distribution makes the device appear and feel lighter, despite it being 5 grams heavier.
The gorgeous 5.5-inch panel and capacitive buttons grace the front of the device, matched with an elegant LED light. The sides feature the power button on the left and the volume rocker on the right. To summarize: it is a gorgeous device with a build quality that can hold its own against most of the competition.
To summarize: it is a gorgeous device with a build quality that can hold its own against most of the competition.
Now if we want to talk about the deviations, this is where the Oppo Find 7 differentiates itself from the Find 7a (and from all other smartphones, really). This version of the Oppo Find 7 series comes with a mind-blowing QHD (2560x1440p) resolution that needs to be witnessed in person to understand its superiority. It’s very easy on the eyes and makes images look stunning.
1440p resolution is the new standard in high-resolution mobile displays, with very few competitors matching this specification (the most popular competitor would be the LG G3). Measuring 5.5 inches diagonally, the screen can boast a 532ppi (pixels per inch) resolution.
Now, there is one downside to this amazing screen: the device may just be a bit too large. While the bezels manage to keep the phone smaller than one would expect for a 5.5-inch smartphone, it still feels relatively large in the hand. Furthermore, the hit on battery life may make this feature less than justifiable.
Now, there is one downside to this amazing screen: the device may just be a bit too large.
Performance and hardware
Inside the Oppo Find 7 you will find a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, which offers a good upgrade from the Find 7a’s Snapdragon 800. It’s also more than enough to keep all those minuscule pixels running smooth. And while the denser screen should put a greater tool on the battery, the manufacturer has added a higher-capacity 3,000 mAh battery that keeps the device running for about 12 hours on fair usage.
To sweeten the deal, even if the phone dies, Oppo has implemented an amazing VOOC charging technology that allows the phone to charge from 0% to 75% in just half an hour. Impressive, if you ask us. Further improving the experience, the device comes with a replaceable battery, a feature that is becoming very rare these days.
Those 3 GB of RAM also help keep your apps and multi-tasking experience as smooth as butter. Not to mention, the device’s 32 GB of internal storage are also very generous, and it can be expanded via its microSD slot.
Turn the device around and you will find what proves to be quite an impressive camera. The device is no slouch in this department, carrying a very capable Sony EXMOR, 13 MP sensor.
The camera software is also far from lackluster, offering features like HDR, scene modes, panorama and your usual nicknacks. Photography enthusiasts will be more excited about a couple unique features this phone offers, though. My favorite was the ability to shoot in RAW mode, but this proved to be more cumbersome as I noticed the sluggish processing time.
My favorite was the ability to shoot in RAW format, but this proved to be more cumbersome as I noticed the sluggish processing time.
The 50 MP shooting mode was a bit faster, but still slow in processing. Regardless, I was glad to see these images turn out surprisingly good. You can see some samples of the 50 MP shooting mode in our dedicated post.
Both Oppo Find 7 devices run on the manufacturer’s Color OS. This could be either good or bad, depending on your preferences. The UI is colorful (.. obviously) and full of features, which we know some of you will deem gimmicky.
A fun feature to test is the gesture panel, which can be pulled out by sliding from the left of the dropdown menu. You can use it to program and launch gestures to perform a number of tasks. Another interesting feature is the ability to double-tap the home button to turn off and wake the device.
Over all, the software manages to stay simple enough on the outside and runs very well. Honestly, all the gimmicks can be easily ignored. The OS is definitely not for everyone, though, especially when considering the factors mentioned above.
Pricing and final thoughts
Back to the main question – is this device worth $100 over the Find 7a? Those who value screen resolution will definitely appreciate the boost in pixel density. The slightly better processor, RAM and battery don’t do much to show a significant difference, though. The higher specs may simply not be able to justify the price bump, at least for everyone.
Both devices run fairly well and much of the extra resources are probably eaten up by the power-hungry screen. Regardless, we will have to give this device a score of 8/10, which is actually a bit lower than the Find 7a got. Why? We feel the specs are not completely worth the $100 price bump. If 1080p is more than enough for you, the Oppo Find 7a will be one hell of a phone to have. You can get them both straight from the Oppo Style store.