The OnePlus Nord is still the most affordable 5G smartphone in India, which in itself makes it great value. Except for this, additionally it is a very good all-rounder on the subject of the cameras, display, battery life, and app performance. Google’s recently launched Pixel 4a is here to challenge the Nord, but can it succeed?
The unmarried rear camera is the spotlight feature of the Pixel 4a, and this has been the case for almost each and every Pixel smartphone so far. This year, the Pixel 4a fixes lots of the shortcomings of its predecessor, making it a well-rounded mid-tier offering. It is time to see which smartphone offers the most efficient value, and which one you must be putting your money on.
OnePlus Nord vs Google Pixel 4a: Price in India and variants
The Google Pixel 4a is only to be had in a unmarried configuration and colour. It has 6GB of RAM with 128GB of storage, and is priced at Rs. 31,999 (with a transitory promotional price of Rs. 29,999 at launch time). The OnePlus Nord however starts at Rs. 24,999 for 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage; going up to Rs. 27,999 for 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage; and Rs. 29,999 for 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. There is a choice of three colours, but some of them are only to be had on sure variants.
When it comes to value, the OnePlus Nord has an virtue with more variants at different price points.
OnePlus Nord vs Google Pixel 4a: Cameras
Let’s start with the camera tests, since this is what both companies boast of and the general public are wondering approximately. Which phone captures better photos and videos?
OnePlus Nord Google Pixel 4a Main Camera Resolution 48 megapixels 12.2 megapixels Aperture f/1.75 f/1.7 Stabilisation Optical Optical Ultra-wide Camera Resolution 8 megapixels None Aperture f/2.25 Macro Camera Resolution 2 megapixels None Depth Camera Resolution 5 megapixels None Selfie Camera Resolution 32 megapixels 8 megapixels Aperture f/2.45 f/2.0 Ultra-wide Selfie Camera Resolution 8 megapixels None Aperture f/2.45
From the table above, it’s lucid that the OnePlus Nord wins the numbers game as it has a complete of six cameras, in comparison to just the two on the Google Pixel 4a. The Nord also has a higher resolution primary sensor, which in theory, must allow it to capture better detail. On the other hand, it goes up against Google’s superior machine learning and AI post-processing software, which we’ve seen work wonders before, so it is time to compare the photos and see which of them are if truth be told better.
In the first challenging backlit shot taken throughout the day, I found the Pixel 4a to do a fairly better job with HDR, as the warmer colours looked closer to the actual scene. Details were a little weaker though, and a few textures on distant objects had a bit of noise, but all this used to be only noticeable after magnifying the image. The picture captured by the OnePlus Nord had a more impartial tone, which also looked good, and objects had fairly better detail thanks to the higher-resolution sensor. Having a look at a closer subject, both phones captured very similar levels of detail, with the only difference being colour tones.
In close-ups, it is the Pixel 4a that takes the lead more often than not. In this pattern of a flower, each and every unmarried vein in the petals is visible, giving it a striking look. The OnePlus Nord boosts colours a bit and fails to capture the intricate details of the flower.
In Portrait mode, the Pixel 4a produced a striking photo with a impartial colour tone and good details. The OnePlus Nord used to be not too far at the back of, packing in good details too, but I found the skin tone it captured a bit too yellow for my liking. Both phones did a decent job when shooting objects too. The Pixel 4a means that you can adjust the level of background blur in the Google Photos app after taking shots, but this cannot be done on the Nord.
In low light, the Google Pixel 4a gets white balance spot on, with good exposure. On the other hand, whether you enlarge the image, details on objects are a bit weak. The OnePlus Nord captures fairly better details and exposure but the colour tone is not accurate to the actual scene. Night mode on both phones worked pretty evenly, but the Pixel 4a did a fairly better job in preserving shadows, giving photos better contrast and depth.
So far, the main rear cameras on both phones are pretty evenly matched on the subject of stills. The Pixel 4a does a fairly better job with portraits, and close-ups in general, in the daytime in addition to in low light, but the OnePlus Nord manages fairly better details in landscape shots. It also has a leg up over the Pixel as it has an ultra-wide-angle camera and a macro camera, and a depth camera. While the usefulness of the latter two is debatable, no amount of AI wizardry can make up for the lack of a wide-angle lens.
On to selfies. With the beauty filters disabled on both phones, the OnePlus Nord had produced better selfies. It capturedt colours pretty as it should be and even managed to expose the background as it should be. The Google Pixel 4a offered up very good detail, but the colour tone used to be a bit too warm and not very pleasant. Both phones did very good jobs with Portrait mode sefies, blurring out the right kind elements in the background. The Pixel 4a wins back serious points in low light, though.
Thanks to Night Sight for the selfie camera, you’ll be able to expect very good exposure and skin tones even with weak man made lighting. The OnePlus Nord doesn’t have the option of Nightscape for either of its selfie cameras, resulting in uneven exposure and weak details. In very dark environments, the Pixel 4a managed the unattainable, making an nearly pitch-dark selfie look well-lit, thanks to Night Sight. The Nord doesn’t perform almost as timed in comparison.
The OnePlus Nord also has an ultra-wide-angle selfie camera, for group photos, which is handy.
The OnePlus Nord and the Google Pixel 4a capture high-quality, stabilised videos at 4K. The Nord can also shoot at 4K 60fps, which the Pixel 4a cannot. Other than a fairly warmer colour tone from the Pixel 4a, details, colours and stabilisation were comparable when shooting with both phones throughout the day.
In low light, the Pixel 4a takes the lead thanks to fairly better exposure and details with minimal shimmer when walking approximately. The OnePlus Nord still has a large number of catching up to do as details were comparatively weaker and there’s an nearly fixed wobble effect whether you pan or walk approximately. When shooting video with the selfie cameras, the Nord captures sharper-looking video since it can shoot at 4K, up to 60fps.
The Google Pixel 4a is a dependable performer in relation to photography, and Google’s AI post-processing seemingly never ceases to impress us. On the other hand unlike final year with the Pixel 3a, the competition has caught up, and it’s come to some degree where software tricks simply don’t seem to be enough anymore. The OnePlus Nord might not have the most efficient low-light performance with stills or video, but it manages to retain up. It also has other strengths such as the flexibility of having more than one front and rear cameras for more than a few photography needs, which is what makes it the overall winner.
OnePlus Nord vs Google Pixel 4a: Design
Based on physical construction quality, I’d pick the Google Pixel 4a between the two. It’s lighter, more compact, and has a very understated charm to it. The body is polycarbonate, just like that of the OnePlus Nord, but instead of a glass back it has a unibody shell which looks good and doesn’t attract fingerprints. I in reality wish Google offered more colours, though.
Whether you need a bit of flash, the OnePlus Nord in this Nord Blue trim must be correct up your alley. On the other hand, it’s heavier and larger than the Pixel 4a, and because of its glass back, easily attracts smudges. Neither of these phones has any IP rating, but in my experience, they have got held up pretty timed so far even with not-so-careful use.
Both smartphones have OLED displays, with full-HD+ resolutions. They also make stronger HDR10+ video playback. Colours and brightness are good across both displays, but a couple of things make the experience of the use of the Nord a bit better. For starters, it has a 90Hz refresh rate as opposed to 60Hz on the Pixel 4a. This makes navigation and scrolling feel snappier and more fluid. The Nord also uses Gorilla Glass 5, in comparison to Gorilla Glass 3 on the Pixel 4a. Lastly, the Nord’s display produces crisper whites in comparison to the Pixel 4a.
Coming to other physical differences between the two phones, the Pixel 4a has a headphone jack, which is lacking on the Nord. On the other hand, it only supports a unmarried physical SIM card (with the option of the use of an eSIM) while the Nord can accommodate two Nano-SIMs. The Pixel 4a has stereo speakers, which the Nord doesn’t. Both phones have biometric authentication. The OnePlus Nord has an in-display fingerprint sensor and face recognition, while Pixel 4a users must make do with only a capacitive fingerprint sensor on the back panel.
Overall, the OnePlus Nord does have the better display but it’s tough to disregard the comfortable size of the Pixel 4a.
OnePlus Nord vs Google Pixel 4a: Software
Software preference can also be very subjective, but I think you must be happy with either the sort of phones. The Google Pixel 4a must obviously be first in line to get any major update from Google. The company promises no less than three years of OS and security updates. The user interface is clean without any bloatware and it has some useful gestures baked in.
The OnePlus Nord runs OxygenOS, which up until now, has been the most efficient skin on Android in our experience. It’s very similar to inventory Android, in the sense that there is minimal bloatware and it’s easy to use. On the other hand, you also get a bunch of useful add-ons such as Game Space to block calls and notifications when gaming, and gestures for such things as taking a screenshot, etc. OnePlus also promises two years of software updates and three years of security updates, which is good.
OnePlus Nord vs Google Pixel 4a: Performance
For daily use, the Google Pixel 4a and OnePlus Nord both perform very timed. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G in the Nord is faster than the Snapdragon 730G in the Pixel 4a, but you almost certainly would possibly not notice this when the use of social apps or texting. The Nord has a lucid lead in benchmarks for certain, but both phones do commendable jobs on the subject of playing games or multitasking. The higher amount of RAM in the top-end variant of the Nord must give it more headroom to continue operating smoothly even in the end. The Pixel 4a is still a snappy performer though, and I never once felt any lack of power for on a regular basis activities.
Videos look good on both displays, but sound is better on the Pixel 4a thanks to its stereo speakers.
Battery life is without doubt one of the biggest differentiating factors between the Google Pixel 4a and the OnePlus Nord. The Nord has almost a 1,000mAh battery capacity virtue (4,115mAh) in comparison to the Pixel 4a (3,140mAh). While both phones will easily get you through one full day on a unmarried charge, the Pixel 4a struggles to go beyond that, while the Nord easily lasts for a day and half or even more, depending on your usage. The Nord charges a lot quicker too, despite having a larger battery. It’s because it supports 30W fast charging, in comparison to just 18W on the Pixel 4a.
Judgement: Is there a lucid winner?
All things regarded as, the OnePlus Nord (Review) wins easily when in comparison to the Google Pixel 4a (Review). It has a more appealing starting price, better hardware, and much stronger battery life. Camera performance used to be also surprisingly competitive, and it’s tough to disregard the usefulness of its ultra-wide-angle cameras. For the general public, I think the OnePlus Nord must still be the phone to shop for under Rs. 30,000 – plus it’s 5G able.
That isn’t to say I wouldn’t recommend the Google Pixel 4a at all. It is probably not as competitive in relation to pricing as the Nord, but provided the price of Google’s preceding smartphones in India, it doesn’t look so naughty. It has a dependable set of cameras, great software, decent overall performance, and acceptable battery life. On the other hand, it loses this battle since other than low-light camera performance, compactness, and stereo speakers, it’s all the time a whip at the back of the OnePlus Nord.
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