OPPO N1 Mini Full Review

Its time for me to finally write the full review of OPPO N1 Mini since I have got my hands on it via OPPO Malaysia for review purpose for about 3 weeks and now you are about to read everything that you will go through as a owner of the OPPO N1 Mini itself as this comes all out from me being used as a daily driver.

Display of the OPPO N1 Mini

When it comes to the display of the OPPO N1 Mini it is sized at 5-inch with a 720p HD display resulting in a resolution of 1280 x 720 which gives about 294PPI. Although it lacks of the Full HD 1080p display, I would rather say it does not matter as the display on the N1 Mini is as good as a display on a Full HD device.

Screen seems to be pretty bright, excellent viewing angles and while you’re out and walking under the bright sun, the display under sunlight is pretty impressive as well. Not to forget that the OPPO N1 Mini uses a IPS LCD display.

Design Language

Calling itself a “mini” it is not really mini after all as it is basically a term to differentiate between the N1 and the N1 Mini only. The design of OPPO N1 Mini is identical to the OPPO N1 itself in term of outlooks. Its made out of aluminium frame with a nice chamfered edge finish to give that extra classy look and to stand out looking pretty premium.

With the ergonomic design, it is slightly curved at the back making it pretty easy to be handled without having difficulty to hold it single handedly. Due to my huge hands, I would say it is pretty easy to use the OPPO N1 Mini as I could easily use it with single hand most of the time as some 5-inch smartphones was a little difficult for me to handle especially when I have to pull the drop down menu from the top.

On the left side of the OPPO N1 Mini, you will only find the power button placed there making it a little bit uncomfortable for those who are right handed, however once you’ve get used to it such placement could be rather normal and would not be an issue to be considered at all. On the right side, you will realize the existence of the volume rockers alongside micro SIM card slot as well. On the front top, you will realize the earpiece and the proximity and light sensors bundled together looking neat.

Placed underneath is the capacitive keys which are the usual ones, Menu > Home > Back. I would prefer having the on screen capacitive buttons to utilize the display area more but being a predecessor of the N1 it has no choice to look identical in that term for sure.  Bottom of the OPPO N1 Mini, you will realize the microphone, 3.5mm audio jack, micro USB slot and speaker grill placed respectively via the sequence mentioned.

Swap to the back of the OPPO N1 Mini and you will find a 13MP camera which is rotate-able up to 206 degrees paired with a single LED flash. Below that you will find another microphone which is specially dedicated for noise cancellation. Last but not least you have the OPPO branding embossed in silver color.

This smartphone has a ceramic material design which is similar to the one known as polycarbonate that gives a much premium and higher quality feel. Since it is a matte finish, you can barely notice any fingerprints nor scratches.

Fantastic Processor, RAM and ROM?

When it comes to smartphone processors, we have a different love and feel especially on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon series. On the OPPO N1 Mini, we have the Snapdragon 400 Quad core processor ( MSM8928 ) clocked at 1.59 GHz while the GPU or rather graphics is powered by none other than Adreno 305 itself. Trust me you will barely notice any lag or performance drop on the OPPO N1 Mini as it has a pretty solid hardware.

The legitimate want of a normal smartphone consumer who does not love a single drop of performance would be not disappointed with the existence of this Quad core processor and of course to make it much attractive, the OPPO N1 Mini comes with 2GB of RAM giving thesmartphone a great amount of RAM being unused most of the time even with vital apps running on the backgorund which is certainly a great addition for sure.

Internal storage for the OPPO N1 Mini is set at 16GB and NO you do not have a micro SD card slot on this smartphone. I have no idea why the storage expansion option was not given to the OPPO N1 Mini, however with the way how cloud storage is growing vastly nowadays, people tend to care less when it comes to storage space. Yes?

The one and only rotatable camera!

The OPPO N1 Mini is one of its kind, beginning from the N1 it started to be the first ever smartphone to have a rotatable camera which means it has only ONE camera which also acts as the front selfie camera. I actually love this idea as with a 13MP front shooter and you can have flash as well to snap a photo and also by using the “Fill Light” on Flash modes, you can have great looking selfie photos from your OPPO N1 Mini.

The camera in OPPO N1 Mini has a sensor size of 1/3.06″ with six element lens and an aperture of f2.0. This also means the image will be in a good quality with good amount of light able to enter the sensor and if you’re a decent photographer or even a professional photographer, tweak up the settings and you could get really good looking photos.

Heading to the camera modes, you will find Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night and Sunset mode while the categories of shooting modes available are Normal, Ultra – HD, Night Shots Pro, Beautify, HDR, Panorama, Slow Shutter, Audio photo, and also GIF.

The camera software user interface is pretty straight forward and user friendly. You can find those features mentioned above by few clicks only. Best part of the camera is the Ultra HD mode which allows you to capture photos of 24MP. How this works? Taking few 8MP shots and stitching it together forms the 24MP single image.

You do realize that taking selfies on smartphones via front camera will usually result in a mirrored image rather than the exact way you look before capturing it, otherwise on the OPPO N1 Mini, you get to take the exact shot you look like before you capturing and you can also take a mirrored image by changing the setting accordingly.

From my perspective, the images taken from the OPPO N1 Mini is rock solid and high quality. Images taken from a standard smartphone with 13MP capability seems to make OPPO N1 Mini to be ranked as one of the best when it comes to the image quality. Decent lighting condition gives images which has no visible noise at all while a little low light condition tends to show a little bit of noises.

Photos takenn using Ultra HD mode seems to be very much containing details that could be still clear enough even after zooming. Below are some shots taken directly from the OPPO N1 Mini itself, its entirely up to you to decide how good it is.

Normal Mode

Night Shots Pro Mode

Ultra HD Mode, download and zoom in this photo to see the amount of details captured.

That’s me 🙂

 Color OS V1.4.0i

Well this is the Skin On that comes with OPPO smartphones on top of the Android 4.3 JellyBean. Don’t be too upset with it being still in JellyBean rather that KitKat as OPPO Find 7 and OPPO Find 7a just got an Android KitKat update which will be definitely coming to OPPO N1 Mini not too far away.

Some of the stock looks is kept in tact within the Color OS such as the lock screen and recent apps menu. You get to install loads of themes made available for you from the Theme Engine built in within your OPPO N1 Mini itself.

OPPO N1 Mini’s Music app seems to be pretty decent as well with some useful and attractive features made available for you to try it out. One of the feature is Voice Recognition which allows you to recognize any song  playing outside your smartphone (not via OPPO N1 Mini) which than allows you to share to your friends. Yes, nothing more than that.

When you navigate to the settings inside the Music app, you will find the shake to skip song option, keep backlight on in lyrics mode, and also the headset sound effect which is Dirac HD that allows you to listen music via headset with a remarkable build in audio preset setting.

OPPO has been always good in implying support of gestures which thus includes the double tapping the screen to turn on the display and double tap the home button to turn off the display, two finger up or down to increase or decrease the volume respectively and three finger swipe down for taking screenshots.

Also, if you swipe the notification drop down menu from the left side of the screen, you will end up seeing the gesture panel which allows you to draw any custom gestures to open up certain apps such as Camera ( O ), Flashlight ( V ), WeChat ( W ) and Play Store ( ^). These are the preset gestures made available by default and if you would like to add more gestures for a specific task or another specific app, just press ” New ” in the custom gesture menu and fiddle around with it.

At some part of time if you tend to get annoyed with this feature, just turn it off in the custom gesture menu itself as sometimes while you place your phone in the pocket, some default apps tend to open by its own due to movement.

You can also activate the camera automatically by rotating the camera from rear view to front view without having to activate the camera manually. How’s that? Head over to Gesture & Motion menu and look for ” Rotate to launch the camera ” and  activate that option.

RAM usage on the OPPO N1 Mini is about 75% most of the time if there are plenty of apps running on the background which gives about 15% of RAM to be idle and free to be used. So 2GB of RAM fits perfectly on the OPPO N1 Mini with the performance and sluggishness not to be noticed anywhere during the period I was using the smartphone.

 Battery life on the OPPO N1 Mini

OPPO also has their own version of Power saving mode which allows you to tweak the settings related to screen power, haptic feedback, GPS,WiFi,cellular data, Bluetooth, and you can also take a step further by disabling the animation, disabling the data which runs on the background, underclocking the CPU, and last but not least enabling a simple desktop which only keeps dialer, contacts, messages and clock features accessible.

With 2140mAh of battery capacity made available for the OPPO N1 Mini, I am pretty sure most of you would have a huge doubt on how long the smartphone could last with a single charge. Well, I could get around almost 2 days of battery life with a single full charge together with 2 hours and 30 minutes of SOT ( Screen On Time ).  This is of course without enabling the Power saving mode and a average usage for web browsing, Facebook and a little bit of Youtube in between.

Conclusion of the OPPO N1 Mini

Towards a more mid ranged smartphone, the OPPO N1 Mini is certainly a leader in its own kind. It comes in great package, a superb 13MP rotatable camera, quad core Snapdragon processor, 2GB of RAM, 5- inch display size, and ergonomic design it is a potential to be a leader together with other mid ranged smartphones. The only concern could be regarding the OS as it is still JellyBean, however as mentioned before the KitKat update is not too far away from reaching the OPPO N1 Mini, so bare with it and shoot great photos with this stylish smartphone.

Price and availability

The official RRP for the OPPO N1 Mini is set at RM1398 and is available in any authorized retailers near you. It is available in White color only in Malaysia and will be eligible for OPPO Malaysia warranty of 1 year. Storekini is now official partner of OPPO Malaysia and they’re selling the OPPO N1 Mini for just RM1198 which you can get it by visiting Storekini