Wednesday, June 19, 2024
Smart Phones

OnePlus 12 vs OnePlus 11: All the differences explained


What are the new features in the OnePlus 12 and is it really that much different from the OnePlus 11?

While these two phones look very similar, there are some quite significant improvements in the OnePlus 12 that you should really know about.

Let’s start right away by outlining them!

OnePlus 12 vs OnePlus 11: All the differences

Table of Contents:

Design and Display Quality

Similar styling, but more refined

The OnePlus 12 looks similar to the OnePlus 11, but it’s a bit larger overall (wider, taller and thicker) with a 6.8-inch form factor compared to a 6.7-inch size of the OnePlus 11.

The design is certainly familiar, with the round camera system on the back, but the volume and power keys are now both on the right hand side, while previous OnePlus phones had the power key on the right and volume buttons on the left. The alert slider is still here on the OnePlus 12 (we love that!), but it has also switched places and is now positioned on the left hand side.

This time around OnePlus has also paid more attention to the craftsmanship in the little details. For example the camera system is surrounded by a metal ring, which resembles an element from a luxury watch. It also has an absolutely stunning surface that reflects light in a really pretty way.

In the US, the OnePlus 12 arrives in a choice of two colors: a black version (with the same glittery finish as on the OnePlus 11) and a green version (this one has a fancy tile-like finish).

Additionally, you have tougher Corning Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on the OnePlus 12 (vs Gorilla Glass 7 on the OnePlus 11).

The US OnePlus 12 model comes with IP65 certification, while the previous model was IP64 rated. That means it is slightly better protected against splashes, but you should not submerge it in water.

The new OnePlus 12 also still uses an optical in-screen fingerprint scanner, so there are no changes here.

Last year, the OnePlus 11 introduced a ground-breaking new vibration motor with a size of 600mm2, nearly twice as big as most others on the market. This vibration motor provided nice and sharp haptics, simulating the feeling of using a real keyboard while typing and going as far as being able to give you different haptics for different weapons in supported games. This custom designed vibration motor is now improved and gets a new “Turbo” version on the OnePlus 12.

But the really big improvements come to the screen quality. It’s a slightly larger 6.8-inch screen, but most impressively it uses a new panel and can get insanely bright.

OnePlus claims local peak brightness can reach 4,500 nits, while the global brightness level of the screen goes to 1,600 nits compared to just 800 nits on the OnePlus 11. That’s a huge leap forward.

Notice how the minimum brightness is now lower, which is a good thing and helps for much more comfortable use of the phone at night.

Both the OnePlus 12 and OnePlus 11 come with a super fast, 80W charger and that signature OnePlus red cable included in the box, and that’s great to hear as most other rivals no longer provide a charger (let alone such a fast one!).

Performance and Software

Just how much faster is Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 on the OnePlus 12?
The OnePlus 12 runs on the newest Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, while the OnePlus 11 is powered by the older Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, but the big question is whether there really is a meaningful difference between the two?

The answer, according to benchmarks, is a clear “yes”.

Performance Benchmarks:

We see some meaningful gains in CPU performance, but an even bigger jump in graphics performance, so gamers would definitely love this device.

As for software support, you have four years of OS updates and five years of security updates on the OnePlus 12, the same commitment as with the OnePlus 11. That is good enough for most people, but you have to remember that Samsung and Google recently started offering a whopping 7 years of updates on their flagship phones.


OnePlus 12 camera gains new zoom powers over the 11

The OnePlus 12 sports three cameras on the back, among which a powerful 3X zoom periscope lens, and Hasselblad branding.

The main camera on the OnePlus 12 uses the new Sony LYT-808 sensor (1/1.4-inch size), which OnePlus says is probably second in quality to only the larger 1-inch Sony sensors. It has a 23mm focal length and fast, f/1.6 aperture, a bit wider than the 24mm lens with f/1.8 aperture on the OnePlus 11.

The ultra-wide camera on the OnePlus 12 seems to use the same 48MP sensor from the OnePlus 11, with a 14mm focal length and f/2.2 aperture.

But the more impressive new addition is the 3X zoom periscope camera. This looks to be the same camera as in the much more expensive OnePlus Open. It uses a 64MP sensor and it can do 3X zoom natively, and 6X zoom via sensor cropping, and it has a fast aperture of f/2.6, perfect for low light photos. And it can also do macro shots with a focus distance of 20cm, and this is really impressive as macro shots from a zoom lens look so much better than macro shots from the ultra-wide camera (as we have on iPhones and Galaxies).

OnePlus also takes great pride in the physical design of the camera system and the metal ring around the cameras, which admittedly looks like something out of a luxury watch.

OnePlus 12 vs OnePlus 11 Camera Sample Photos

As you can see in the images above, colors look generally more natural out of the OnePlus 12, almost as if coming out of a traditional camera rather than a smartphone.

OnePlus brags it can take “DSLR-level portraits” and while we thought that might be an overstatement, we are indeed very happy with the results.

Zoom quality is much improved at 3X and 6X thanks to the new periscope zoom lens. But the improvements seem to be across the board starting even with selfies and ending with the ultra-wid camera where the processing makes a bigger difference than you’d expect.

In comparison, images out of the OnePlus 11 often look a bit washed out and not quite as lively.

One issue that we did notice with the OnePlus 12 is that it was more susceptible to sunflare, but if you can avoid that, chances are you will like the improved image quality.

Battery Life and Charging

A big step up in battery life

The OnePlus 12 has a massive, 5,400mAh battery inside it, a big increase over the 5,000mAh battery on the OnePlus 11 (and most Android flagship phones too for that matter).

This is a big deal, and OnePlus seems to beat the competition in battery life.

PhoneArena Battery Test Results:

While we have an 8% increase in battery size, the OnePlus 12 scores significantly higher across all of our battery tests.

For YouTube video streaming, it lasted an impressive 13 hours and a half, compared to nearly 8 hours and a half on the older generation OnePlus 11, and the difference was similarly big in our web browsing test, again in favor of the new OnePlus 12

Additionally, the OnePlus 12 supports 80W fast charging, which means a full 1% to 100% charge takes around 30 minutes.

PhoneArena Charging Test Results:


Because of the slightly bigger battery on the OnePlus 12 and the same 80W speeds as the 11, the full charge takes just a few minutes longer, but it is still impressively quick.

The previous OnePlus 11 did not support wireless charging at all, and the company said that with fast wired charging most people don’t really need wireless charging. However, the new OnePlus 12 gets wireless charging and a zippy one, at speeds of up to 50W (it requires the use of a OnePlus charger for those fast speeds, though).

Audio Quality

The loudspeaker on the OnePlus 12 feels a bit roomier and sound is a bit more spacious, but the difference is not huge. It’s a small tweak to the sound quality, and we had to mention it.

As we’ve already mentioned, haptics are also a tiny bit improved over the already impressive ones on the OnePlus 11. 


Just a couple of years ago, OnePlus seemed a bit confused and losing its identity. But it has pledged to rediscover itself and the OnePlus 11 was the first step to that process.

The OnePlus 12 takes things a big step further. It is a flagship phone through and through, with a flagship processor, more refined design, improved cameras and great battery life.

It might not have a “Pro” in its name, but it is just as “Pro” and “Ultra” as other phones, without parading this.

It is also an excellent deal. Starting at $800, it undercuts the competition by quite a bit, as the Galaxy S24 Ultra for example retails for $1,300. Keep in mind that you can also trade literally any phone in any condition for a $100 discount on the OnePlus 12, making the price even sweeter.

The only thing it really lacks is specialized AI features, but we’re yet to see how essential that will be for the average user considering that you can download an app for many AI features too. At the end of the day, if you are wondering whether an upgrade is worth it, the OnePlus 12 might be one of those rare cases where next year’s model is actually quite the big leap forward and we’d say “go for it”.


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