The A57 is the newest member of OPPO’s lineup of selfie-centric smartphones. Carrying the signature design, build quality, and features that the brand is known for, it promises good performance and imaging capabilities for a reasonable price.

So the question remains, is this one worth it? or is it better to look somewhere else? Let’s find out in this full review.

OPPO A57 Specs:

  • 1.4GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 Octa-Core Processor
  • 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage expandable via microSD card (up to 256GB)
  • 5.2-inch HD Display
  • 13MP Rear Camera, f/2.2, PDAF
  • 16MP Selfie Camera, f/2.0
  • ColorOS 3.0 on top of Android 6.0 Marshmallow
  • 2,900mAh battery
  • Dual SIM, 4G/LTE
  • OTG
  • Sensors: Fingerprint, Compass Magnetometer, Proximity, Accelerometer, Ambient light, Gyroscope

A More Compact Approach

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With a 5.2-inch display, the A57 looks to be a more compact version of the popular F1s. Sporting the familiar soft curves along with metal+glass construction. The device feels solid in the hand, and thanks to the more pocket-friendly size, one-handed operation should be a breeze even for those with small hands.

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The top bezel isn’t annoyingly huge, but it would’ve been better if they slashed a few more millimeters off of it. The home button also acts as the fingerprint sensor and cannot be pressed. Oh, and the capacitive keys are not illuminated.

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There’s no LED Notification light here. So you’ll have to check the phone regularly to see if you’ve missed a call or message. It’s quite questionable as to why they didn’t include something so basic. At least, it uses a triple slot tray, which means you get the convenience of being able to use 2 SIM cards along with your microSD card.

An Ample Display

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The 5.2-inch 720p display exhibits vibrancy with sharp text and good details on each element. This, in turn, highlights the beauty of ColorOS with its bright and colorful icons.

A Decent Gaming Experience

Apart from flawlessly handling the typical daily tasks, the A57 performed better than expected even in a resource intensive game, NBA 2K17.

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The game was playable even in High settings with decent frame rates. Though I would suggest turning it down to medium for an even smoother experience.

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Oh, and if you’re planning to use this for Mobile Legends, you’ll have a great experience as the game runs smoothly, though the overall graphics quality could use some work.

Imaging Prowess? (Yes, until you turn the Bokeh Effect On)

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a57 cam12 - OPPO A57 Review: Selfie Expert Goes Compacta57 cam11 - OPPO A57 Review: Selfie Expert Goes CompactI was actually surprised with how well the rear camera performed, as photos came out vibrant, sharp, well detailed, and with accurate colors. Focusing speed is also quite fast, and taking multiple shots in succession didn’t yield any problems.

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Touted as a selfie-centric device, the front camera performance was also quite good as selfies came out with ample details.

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That is until you turn the Bokeh effect on. Sure, the background is blurred alright, but the blurred areas appear pixelated and there a few instances wherein areas that shouldn’t be blurred are blurred and vice versa.

An OS that feels a bit incomplete

I’ve always seen ColorOS as a simple yet interesting take on Android, thanks to the slew of settings that it offers the user. This time though, I feel like there are things that can be improved, such as the lack of a double-tap to sleep, and the absence of a progress bar on the notification page for instances wherein you’re downloading an app, etc.

Despite this, however, the OS remains smooth in terms of navigation, with no hint of lag or stutter when browsing through the menus. It’s also very bright and colorful, which adds a bit of fun to the overall experience.

Excellent Battery Life

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The A57 may be a compact device, but the 2900mAh battery can last you more than a day with light to moderate use. Charging from 10% to full takes around 2.5 hours, which is average. But then again, you’re getting more up time so you won’t really have to charge that often.

Verdict

There are a number of things that I like about the OPPO A57. It has a vibrant display, the gaming performance is decent, the imaging capability of the rear camera is better than expected, and of course, the outstanding longevity.

There are quirks of course, such as the unrefined Bokeh Effect, and the absence of a notification light, which is very basic. Still, I think that the performance and battery life alone makes this phone a decent choice for its PhP11,990 price tag.

The Good

  • Display
  • Build Quality
  • General and Gaming Performance
  • Camera Performance (Bokeh Effect OFF)
  • Battery Life

The Not So Good

  • Lack of Notification Light
  • Poor implementation of the Bokeh Effect

 

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Author

Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.

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