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OPPO A91 - better than a working class phone
4.9Overall Score
Name: OPPO A91
Price (RRP): $499
Manufacturer: OPPO

The OPPO A91 is a $499 phone with the lot. That is a little strange as the A-series is a mass-market device and you expect some compromises. You don’t expect a 6.4” AMOLED screen, 48MP Quad rear camera, NFC, Wi-Fi AC,  4000mAh battery with blazingly fast USB-C VOOC Flash Charge 3.0 – no you don’t.

Now, the sub $500 market is where all the 4G action is. The OPPO A91 faces some stiff competition – from the terrific realme XT (OPPO made – GadgetGuy review here); Motorola G8 Plus (GadgetGuy review here and now $447); and the Samsung Galaxy A70 (GadgetGuy review here $649 but on sale at close to $500).

We would include the Nokia 7.3 2020 model (not yet released and the 7.2 only scored 4/5 in our GadgetGuy review here). Similarly, we have not seen the TCL 10L ($499) that won’t be here for a few months and does not have an AMOLED screen.

OPPO A91 Model CPH2021_EX_11_A.23 Dual Sim, 8/128GB

We issue the standard warning that you must not ignore

Do not buy it online from any other store that promises ‘Australian stock’ unless it specifically has the much-needed LTE band 28, NFC, comes with a genuine Australian OPPO VOOC 3.0 charger and has the Australian C-tick symbol on its regulatory page. Specifically, not models PCPM00 or PCPT00

OPPO A91 C-tick

First impression – OPPO A91

Lightening Black – I am not sure if OPPO meant to spell it that way. Lightening means lessening or reducing weight. Lightning means a flash of light in the sky or speedy/fast. Either way, it is gloss piano black with a slight prism highlight. It is a fingerprint magnet. I have not seen Blazing Blue, but I guess it is also a high gloss blue.

OPPO A91 Black
The highlights are not as pronounced

What is most apparent is the quad camera and dual-LED flash. The centre teardrop screen is AMOLED, and it is gorgeous – we will look at that later. It has a small chin and narrow side bezels.

And it is thin and light – 7.9mm and 172g – very pocketable.

Overall, it is comfortable to hold, looks subtle and premium – I like it.

AMOLED on a $499 phone – shut the front door! EXCEED

AMOLED has a special place as the best screen type, bar none. This is a 6.4”, 2400×1080, 408ppi, 90.7% STBR, 20:9, 60Hz with a typical brightness of 430nits and OLED’s deep black – infinite contrast. It well exceeds that at peak auto-brightness and is daylight readable.

Our test gear is locked-up, so you will have to take our word for it. The screen defaults to bright white and is adjustable from cool to warm white. There is no colour gamut adjustment – and we don’t expect that – but we estimate it is over 95% sRGB and looks quite accurate.

It has Gorilla Glass 5, under glass Goodix Fingerprint reader and an Always-on-Display setting. This screen uses DC 2.0 dimming instead of PWM and gains TUV certification for eye care.

The screen/GPU supports Widevine L1 for HD videos from Amazon or YouTube etc.

Our test software shows it is an OP3B9B screen – that is not a normal Samsung screen code – so we assume it is from one of the newer Chinese OLED makers.

Processor – PASS+

12nm MediaTek MT6771V/CT Helio P70, Eight-core (four-core, Cortex A73, 2.11 GHz/four-core, Cortex A53, 2Ghz).

It is a very popular mid-range chip with over 55 brands/models/variants. Used by Motorola One Macro/G8 Play/G9 Play, Vivo S1/V15, OPPO Reno2F/Lite/A9/A11/F11/F15 and realme U1/3/4. The nearest comparison is a Qualcomm SD660 – Helio P70 has a few advantages over that.

GeekBench 5 (single/multi-core 278/1409) is like the Samsung S8 series. Compute is 1123.