An affordable A9 2020?
The A9 2020 redefined the way OPPO wants to market the A-series—as a mid-range phone, not a budget offering. But its higher price tag relative to its specs and the competition make it a tough sell for budget-strapped shoppers. Unwilling to cede valuable mid-range ground, OPPO has released a relatively more affordable version with the A5 2020. If you like the A9 2020’s looks and you don’t need copious amounts of RAM or a 48-megapixel camera, the A5 2020 positions itself as an affordable alternative from OPPO.
- 12-megapixel main camera is still a performer
- Loud stereo speakers
- Way more affordable than the A9 2020
- 10w wired charging is sluggish for its 5000mAh battery
- Night mode processing time is slow
Packaging and contents
Like the A9 2020, you get the same packaging design and contents with the A5 2020. Inside the box, you have your documentation, jelly case, headset, USB-C cable, 10w charger, and the phone itself.
Virtually identical save for color choices
Put the A9 2020 and A5 2020 side-by-side, and you can barely distinguish between the two save for the color choices— you get either Dazzling White and Mirror Black. Our review unit is the latter, and while it’s not as loud as the limited edition Vanilla Mint A9 2020, we love the subtlety of the A5 2020’s Dazzling White color.
Like the A9 2020, you also get a 6.5-inch HD+ display, a dewdrop notch, stereo speakers, and Dolby Atmos. The A5 2020 produces loud and crisp sound output from its stereo speakers, making it ideal for consuming video content and playing games without the need for headphones.
The A5 2020 also comes with a USB-C port, making it the most affordable OPPO phone to come with the versatile port. As much as we appreciate the much-needed change, the A5 2020 strangely does not support USB-C earphones. While we hope OPPO issues a software update to fix this issue, it should not be a big deal: you still have that good ‘ol headphone jack to plug in your wired cans.
No 48-megapixel, no problem
The A5 2020’s quad rear cameras consist of a 12-megapixel f/1.8 main camera, 8-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide-angle camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 portrait camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 mono camera. You also get EIS at Full HD video recording and Night Mode 2.0 with the A5 2020, with the latter usable for the phone’s ultra-wide-angle lens. 4K video recording is also present, which is a big upgrade for the entry-level phone. For selfies, you have an 8-megapixel f/2.0 snapper housed in its dewdrop notch.
While it doesn’t have a 48-megapixel main snapper like the A9 2020, the A5 2020’s 12-megapixel camera produced decent photos that’s good enough for social media. Here are some of our snaps when we used the A5 2020 during our trip to Singapore:
When it comes to low light, the A5 2020’s Night mode does help in getting decent shots, though it takes a good 7 seconds for the phone to process the photo. That is annoyingly slow considering its rivals can process photos shot in Night Mode in under 4 seconds.
As for videos, the A5 2020 delivers decent footage with EIS at Full HD. While it can shoot 4K, the lack of EIS makes it hard to get stable and usable footage. Should you opt to use the A5 2020 as your vlogging tool, it is best to stick to Full HD video recording. Check out these two vlogs shot using the phone:
Familiar internals, equally familiar performance
Powering the A5 2020 is a Snapdragon 665 processor paired in either 3GB/64GB and 4GB/128GB configuration. Despite having lower RAM, there’s little difference with the A5 2020’s overall gaming performance compared to its more expensive sibling. Check out our gaming benchmarks below:
The A5 2020 also has a long battery life with its 5000mAh cell, scoring around 14 hours and 30 minutes on PCMark’s battery test. On real-life use, the A5 2020 lasted with us for one and a half day on heavy use and up to two days with light to medium use.
We find the A5 2020’s 10w charging slow to juice up the huge battery. On our tests, it took us approximately 3 hours to fully charge the A5 2020.
Verdict: Get this instead of the A9 2020
Being at least Php 5k more affordable than the A9 2020, the A5 2020 is arguably the better choice. You don’t really lose out much: save for lower RAM, a 12-megapixel main shooter, and 8-megapixel selfie camera, you still get the majority of the A9 2020’s key features: Snapdragon 665, 5000mAh battery with USB-C charging, and stereo speakers.
The A5 2020 is priced at Php 10,990 for the 4GB/128GB model and Php 8,990 for the 3GB/64GB model. The former is available at authorized OPPO stores while the latter is exclusive to Lazada.
OPPO A5 (2020) specs
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 processor
- Adreno 610 GPU
- 3GB/4GB RAM
- 6.5-inch HD+ display with waterdrop notch, Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection
- 64GB/128GB of expandable storage
- 12-megapixel f/1.8 main camera, 8-megapixel f/2.2 ultra-wide-angle camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 portrait camera, 2-megapixel f/2.4 mono camera; with PDAF, EIS, LED Flash
- 8-megapixel f/2.0 front camera
- 3G, LTE
- Dual SIM
- WiFi, Bluetooth 5.0, GPS, A-GPS,
- Fingerprint scanner, USB Type-C, Stereo speakers, Dolby Atmos
- 5000mAh battery with reverse charging
- Android 9.0, ColorOS 6
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