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OnePlus Nord CE 2 vs OnePlus Nord CE: What are the key differences?

OnePlus has just launched another mid-range phone boasting 5G connectivity, but what sets this one apart from its predecessor? Read on for all the key specs differences between the two handsets.

OnePlus is a band that boasts many loyal followers, and there’s a good reason for that; it offers a range of excellent Android phones that offer something impressive at every price point.

At the lower mid-range part of the spectrum, you’ll find the OnePlus Nord CE 5G and the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G; but what separates one from the other, and which should you go for? Read this guide to find out.

Design and Screen

Superficially, the design differences between the two devices are visible from first glance; the camera module of the Nord CE is a thin black vertical strip, whereas the 2nd-generation handset has a smooth slightly raised bump a little similar to that of the Oppo Find X3 Pro.

OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G Rear Panel

The colour options are different too; the older phone is available in Charcoal Ink, Blue Void, and Silver Ray, while the newer one comes in two shades: Bahama Blue and Gray Mirror.

However, the screens are where you’ll see plenty of similarities. They’re both 6.43-inch AMOLED panels with 90H refresh rates, and a 1080x2400p (Full HD+) resolution. However, a key difference is that the OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G has HDR10+ support which was lacking in its predecessor, so images and supported videos should be a tad more vibrant.

There are very fine margins at play here, but it seems that the Nord CE 2 just pips its forerunner to the post.


Though the camera modules look significantly different, as discussed above, the actual specs are strikingly similar.

Both come equipped with a 64-megapixel main camera, an 8-megapixel ultrawide lens, and a 2-megapixel macro sensor. the only significant differences are to be found in the apertures; the Nord CE’s main and ultrawide sensors have apertures of f/1.7 and f/2.2 respectively, whereas those of its successor measure f/1.8 and f/2.3.

Top half back view of a blue One Plus Nord CE 5G 5 resting upside down on top of the wall
OnePlus Nord CE 5G Camera Module

There’s very little to choose from between the two in this regard, and you’d be hard pressed to choose one over the other based on this specification alone.


The chipsets of both devices are different, with the latest model toting a MediaTek Dimensity 900 5G, and the older variant running on a Snapdragon 750G 5G processor.

Having put both of the devices to the test, here are the resulting benchmark scores:

Geekbench 5 Single-CoreGeekbench 5 Multi-Core3D Mark Sling Shot3D Mark Wild Life
OnePlus Nord CE 5G632180727151124
OnePlus Nord CE 2 5G727214837252015

As you can see, the newer model has improved on all of the previous edition’s scores, most especially in the latter two tests which particularly pertain to gaming performance.

Battery Life

Once again, the two devices are broadly similar in another metric; they both pack a 4500mAh battery capacity. However, there’s one spec here that puts the Nord CE 2 head and shoulders above the original, and that’s with regard to fast-charging, where its 67W charger easily outpaces the (nonetheless impressive) 30W capability of the Nord CE.

Early Verdict

OnePlus has made precious few changes to the Nord CE 2, as it strongly resembles the preceding device in the series. The new one is likely to have a very slight edge in a few areas, most especially fast-charging and performance, but if you can find a cut-price deal on the Nord CE 5G then it might actually prove to be better value for money.

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