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Best OnePlus phone 2023: Affordable, high-class smartphones for you

Find the one, plus a whole lot more in our guide to the latest and greatest OnePlus smartphones

From exclusive, invite-only sales to holding its own against the likes of Samsung and Apple, OnePlus has come a long way since its humble word-of-mouth beginnings. Crunch the numbers and you will find that grabbing one of the best OnePlus smartphones makes a whole heap of sense considering all the stuff on offer.

Early OnePlus adopters may be surprised to see that its roster of smartphones has expanded considerably beyond just ‘affordable flagships’. Today, the manufacturer launches its full-fat flagships alongside a ‘Pro’ model plus a range of more affordable ‘Nord’ devices throughout the year, with their own spin-offs to boot.

However much money you’ve set aside for your latest phone, OnePlus generally offers its customers incredible value and makes each of its handsets well worth your consideration. These are the very best OnePlus handsets you can buy right now.

Best OnePlus phone: At a glance

How we test OnePlus smartphones

When testing OnePlus smartphones, we use a variety of different benchmarks. We usually start with the Geekbench and GFXBench applications, available on the Google Play store. These tests provide us with gaming and CPU processing scores that we can use to directly compare against the competition.

Next up is our display testing. For this, we use a display colorimeter and DisplayCal software to assess how well the screen reproduces colours, as well as the contrast ratio and maximum brightness.

For battery life, we set the screen brightness to the standard luminance of 170cd/m2, engage aeroplane mode and play a looped video until the phone dies. We then note down the timestamp of when we restart the phone.

We always test smartphone cameras against a competitor, and this involves a variety of shooting scenarios including low-light and nighttime photography, still life, portraits and scenic shots. We also ensure that every shooting feature is fully tested before making our conclusions, including evaluating the various frame rate, resolution and stabilisation settings for video recording.

READ NEXT: Best mid-range smartphones

The best OnePlus smartphones you can buy in 2023

1. OnePlus 11: The best OnePlus flagship

Price when reviewed: £685 | Check price at Amazon

Last year’s OnePlus 10 Pro set a high bar as a powerful flagship at an affordable price, but the OnePlus 11 clears it with ease, taking everything that worked in its predecessor and adding a more robust IP64 water resistance rating. There’s also a blisteringly fast Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor and outstanding battery life, which lasted for over 28 hours in our tests.

At the head of this already well-rounded package is a solid suite of cameras. Once again developed in partnership with Hasselblad, this comprises a 50MP main lens, 48MP ultrawide and 32MP portrait module. While the latter’s 2x optical zoom isn’t a true substitute for a longer telephoto lens, the photos it produces are particularly impressive, with crisp outlines and a smooth bokeh effect in the background. The focus struggled to land in testing when the camera was too close to the subject, but with reasonable distance, this is a terrific shooter.

Read our full OnePlus 11 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Octa-core 3.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2; Screen: 6.7in, 3,216 x 1,440; Camera: 50MP, 32MP (portrait) 48MP (ultrawide); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 13

2. OnePlus Nord 2T 5G: The best mid-range OnePlus

Price when reviewed: £369 | Check price at Amazon

If you like the price and specs of the Nord CE 2 5G, but would prefer a more alvish design and a handful of incremental improvements, then the Nord 2T is just the ticket. It’s the fastest phone in its price bracket, producing improved multi-core performance via its MediaTek Dimensity 1300 chipset compared to the CE 2 5G. Tough Gorilla Glass 5 covers the front and back – instead of the plastic on the CE 2 5G – while retaining an equally strong battery life (almost 24 hours).

We awarded it five stars and a Best Buy award during our full-length review and we reckon it’s worth paying the extra £70 over the Nord CE 2 if you can afford it. With £400 to spend, you can’t do any better.

Read our full OnePlus Nord 2T 5G review

Key specs – Processor: Octa-core 3GHz MediaTek Dimensity 1300; Screen: 6.43in, 2,400 x 1,080; Camera: 50MP, 8MP (ultrawide) 2MP (depth); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 12

3. OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite 5G: The best budget OnePlus

Price when reviewed: £263 | Check price at Amazon

The CE 2 Lite 5G is the cheapest OnePlus phone we recommend, but its low cost – and the ‘Lite’ tag – isn’t to the detriment of quality. The 5,000mAh battery is extraordinary for the cost, clocking almost 24 hours before needing a charge. The 6.59in screen is similarly impressive with a resolution of 2,412 x 1,080 and a maximum 120Hz refresh rate. Performance is solid, too, beating out the vast majority of similarly priced phones.

There are some things you have to forgive, however, including an exterior build that doesn’t inspire too much joy. Plus, you can get a Gorilla Glass protected, AMOLED screen and ultrawide lens on the regular Nord CE 2 for just £20 more. But if it’s purely a total cost thing, then there isn’t a more affordable smartphone from OnePlus than the Nord CE 2 Lite 5G.

Read our full OnePlus Nord CE 2 Lite 5G review

Key specs – Processor: Octa-core 2.2GHz Snapdragon 965 5G; Screen: 6.59in, 2,412 x 1,080; Camera: 64MP, 2MP (depth) and 2MP (macro); Storage: 128GB; Operating system: Android 12

4. OnePlus 10T: The best entry-level flagship

Price when reviewed: £629 l Check price at Amazon

Remember the big-brand killing prices OnePlus flagships used to be known for? Well, there are still flagship killers out there, but like the OnePlus 10T, they’re just a little pricier than they used to be.

Cheaper than the 10 Pro, the 10T offers a lot for a lot less money. It has the same size screen as the Pro, and it even uses the slightly newer Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipset. Like other OnePlus phones, fast charging is also a strength, with insane 160W charging. Plug it in, and the phone charges to 50% in just eight minutes and 100% in around 20 minutes.

Read our full OnePlus 10T review

Key specs – Processor: Octa-core 3.19GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1; Screen: 6.7in, 2,412 x 1,080; Camera: 50MP, 8MP (wide), 2MP (depth); Storage: 128GB, 256GB; Operating system: Android 12

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